How to make a homemade nitro foam RC plane

Written by amanda hevener
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How to make a homemade nitro foam RC plane
A foam RC aeroplane is simple to build and fly. (Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Radio-controlled aircraft can be made out of wood, aluminium or foam. Foam aircraft are simple and can be completed in a day. Most foam RC aeroplanes are equipped with an electric motor, but they can also be designed for a nitro engine. These types of engines use a special nitro fuel that is designed specifically for RC aircraft, so a space for a fuel tank needs to be built into the fuselage. They are also heavier, so thicker foam is required to support the weight.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Pencil
  • Measuring Tape or Ruler
  • 3-inch thick Foam Board
  • Hacksaw
  • Sandpaper
  • Packing Tape
  • Epoxy
  • Nitro motor
  • Fuel tank
  • Receiver
  • Battery
  • Velcro
  • Scissors
  • 4 Servos
  • Propeller

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  1. 1

    Lay the foam on a flat, dry surface. Measure out the components of the aeroplane and sketch them onto the foam with the pencil. The wings are 36-by-7 inches. The fuselage is 24-by-6 inches wide, and the tail structure is 5 inches square.

  2. 2

    Cut out each piece with the hacksaw, and sand slightly until the edges are smooth. Once the wings are cut out, measure an area on the end of each that is 3-by-7 inches. These will be the ailerons. Cut them out of the wings.

  3. 3

    Attach the ailerons to the wings with packing tape. Create a hinge out of the tape by folding each piece over with the sticky side out. The ailerons need to move to control the plane.

  4. 4

    Epoxy the wings and the tail structure to the fuselage. The wings should be placed flat approximately near the centre of the body. Glue the tail to the rear end of the fuselage. Rather than placing it flat like the wings, the thin edge needs to be placed down the centre of the fuselage so that the piece sticks up in the air in line with the body of the plane.

  5. 5

    Mount the motor and the fuel tank on the nose of the aeroplane with epoxy. Epoxy one servo on the tail, one on each of the ailerons, and one in the front near the engine. Cut the Velcro into small strips with the scissors, and Velcro the receiver near the engine. Connect the wires to the receiver, and the receiver to the motor. Connect the battery to the receiver. Attach the propeller to the engine and screw on by hand until snug.

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