Updated: 2 days ago
This is the construction blog for the bigger version of the Pitts.
Pitts Printer Settings:
Printing The Tail Feathers:
Printing the wing attach and main gear fittings:
Landing gear wire fabrication and printing the wheel pants:
Printing and Assembly of the Lower Wing:
Printing and Assembly of the Upper Wing:
Wing Struts Printing and Assembly:
Printing and reinforcing the Cowling:
Covering the Big Pitts :
Installing the electronics:
Weight and Balance:
This is a larger version of the original Pitts Special offered on our website. The purpose of this plane is to be a large, high performance, durable model.
The vast majority of the prototype of this plane was 3 D printed. This model is of a standard built up construction style as opposed to thin wall printing. The airframe is strong, light, and can take some bumps. This a composite model, however. There are a few plywood parts as well as balsa and basswood components. as well as bent wire landing gear. Additionally we will be providing a vacuum molded clear canopy as well as fiberglass wheel pants and cowling. Check the materials list and plans for fabricated parts.
Yes this model requires covering, but think about it. How strong and light is an applied covering that actually adds tension and strength to the model as compared to a model printed in a single wall vase mode? I'll let you guess which of the two models will still be around next year after a full season of flying and arguably survivable landings.
Although we are printing with thermoplastics, with much care this plane is coverable with low temp covering films. We used Ultracote for the prototype.
As an additional comment on covering options check out our blog post about old school silk iron on covering here.
This model was designed to be printed from standard PETG filament. It provides just the right amount of strength along with flexibility. Standard PLA may be an acceptable substitute but we have found the slightly higher temperature tolerance of PETG to be an advantage. Special care needs to be taken to tune your printer so that your geometry is actually printed to the correct size. The parts on this model interlock so the fit is essential. As an aid to this take a look at our separate blog post on this subject here. Make sure to download our free test gauge as well.
In order to achieve the strength and density we designed this model for pay careful attention to our recommended print settings for wall thickness and fill. To ensure it all stays up to date we have a link to those settings right here.
Let's get started! Follow the series in this blog for printing of each of the components, and then final assembly and setup of the model. Questions? Check our FAQ's page here. If that doesn't work reach out to us, we would love to hear from you.