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Goldberg Falcon Sires a Junior July/August 1963 American Modeler
July / August 1963 American Modeler
[Table of Contents] Aircraft modeling has undergone
significant changes over the decades - both in technology and preferences. Magazines like American Aircraft Modeler,
American Modeler, and
Air Trails were the best venues for capturing snapshots of the
status quo of the day. Still, many things never change, so much of the old content is relevant to today's modeler.
Whether you are here to wax nostalgic, or are interested in learning history, hopefully you will find what you are seeking.
As time permits, I will be glad to scan articles for you. All copyrights
are hereby acknowledged.
In the early 1960s, Carl Goldberg Models was reaching a crescendo in its kit manufacturing business. Many successful models were already on the hobby shop shelves serving all genres of the hobby - free flight, control line, and radio control. The Falcon was a particularly big hit because it served as both a trainer and an intermediate flyer. A newbie could buy a Falcon and use if from his maiden flight to introductory aerobatics. Building off the success of the Sr. Falcon to come up with a 1/2A size version. Rudder-only was still popular at the time, so the Jr. Falcon launched into a market ready for another option. I don't recall ever owning a Jr. Falcon, but I have owned a couple 1/2A Skylanes and a Skylark.
Note in the advertisements that the price for a Jr. Falcon was $4.95 in 1967 and then $5.95 three yeas later in 1970.
One Good Kit Breeds Another: Goldberg's Falcon Sires a Junior
This first try at a commercial R/C design by Carl Goldberg turned out so successfully that he has marketed the same design in smaller size; both are products of Carl Goldberg Models (Chicago). Let's dig into the original big one, to see what we can find.
Design Concept. Carl chose a medium size trainer which may be flown with the simplest Rudder-only installation, or the smaller reed receivers and servos to fly with . Rudder-Elevator-Motor Control. The shoulder-wing configuration is generally more "forgiving" than the low wing.
Since it is intended to fly with elevators, if desired, the builder may wish to try inverted operation, and the semi-symmetrical wing is accepted as a fair compromise between good rightside-up flight and the inverted maneuvers - including outside loops. Airfoil is of moderate thickness. The stab is also medium thick, fully symmetrical.
Dihedral is fairly modest, so if the plane is built for rudder-only, it could be increased to provide better rolling properties - assuming the builder was interested in violent acrobatics. If elevators are to be used, stick to the plans.
For good ground handling and ROG's, we find a trike landing gear. Nose gear furnished with the kit is not steerable. A generous distance between nose and main gears and wide main wheel tread assure stability in taxiing, takeoff or landing.
Construction. The Falcon is of simple construction. Two fuselage sides must be pieced together with a "sawtooth" joint; this is strengthened by side doublers which cover it. Fuselage formers are keyed into slots in the sides; both top and bottom are keyed, as are such additional parts as the tail assembly seat. It would be pretty difficult to put the fuselage together any other way but true.
Hardwood motor bearers are furnished along with plywood "breakaway" motor mounting plate. This plate used early in the fuselage assembly assures that the sides are even.
Landing gear main and nose wires are formed from 1/8" music wire, the nose strut having a 4-loop shock spring in it. Main gear is built into the fuselage bottom.
The main wing is rectangular, all ribs are die-cut, leading and trailing edges are notched for rib positioning. The edges are shaped to required cross-section. To spare the novice modeler some of the woes of assembling a wing with underside convex, "Symmet-Tru" construction is featured. This includes positioning tabs on the underside of some wing ribs, near the leading edge, easily removed after the frame is complete. The stab, quite simple, also has rib tabs to aid assembly. Fin and rudder are of sheet balsa, as are the elevators.
Equipment. The plane was test flown with Min-X 6 channel equipment and three Transmite servos. It may be used with engines from .09 to .19, with .15 being favored; the Multi test plane had an O.S. Max .15 RC engine, and a 2-oz deBolt clank tank (there is ample room for a much larger tank).
All parts needed to complete the plane that are not furnished in the kit are specified by name and size. The balsa has been carefully selected; wing rib sheets are light but stiff quarter-grain stock; wing spars are hard balsa (a little heavier, but they'll better stand the beating most beginners will give the plane), wing tips are cut from same block of balsa, so they will be matched in weight.
Specifications. Span-56", chord-10", wing area-558 sq. in. Test plane with 6 channel equipment weighed 3 1/2 lb. Equipment space under wing, 10 x 3 1/4," high x 2 3/4" wide; ample space for all batteries under fuel tank in forward compartment.
Knowing a good thing when he has one, Goldberg scaled his Falcon down to smaller size. Appearance, design and construction features are so much like the 56" plane you would have difficulty telling them apart in the air - except for the noise. Junior is intended especially for any .049 engine ... which gives lots of leeway.
The fuselage sides have same W-joint in the center, the same doublers fore and aft, the same keyed formers, top and bottom. Wings are made the same way, with Symmet-True methods to assure easy and accurate assembly.
Intended basically for Rudder operation, the Jr. Falcon may be flown with kick-up elevator and plans show where to cut the stab for this addition. Despite modest size, there is lots of fuselage space for radio gear, both under wing and in the nose compartment. Designer Goldberg feels Junior is ideal for the "package" radio units, depicts the Citizen-Ship R/C Pak in one sketch. Another suggested and illustrated installation is C & S Finch receiver with Septalette Mark V actuator, for proportional rudder.
Junior Falcon spans 37".
Jr. Falcon Specs: Span 37"; chord, 6 3/4"; area, 250 sq. in. Intended for .049 to .074 engines, integral or separate fuel tanks, beam or radial mount. Weight, 16-oz. Radio area under wing is 6 3/4 x 2 1/2 x 2" wide; 3 x 2 1/4, x 1 1/2" (average) compartment in nose.
The AMA Plans Service offers a full-size
version of many of the plans show here at a very reasonable cost. They will scale the plans any size for you. It is always
best to buy printed plans because my scanner versions often have distortions that can cause parts to fit poorly. Purchasing
plans also help to support the operation of the Academy of Model
Aeronautics - the #1 advocate for model aviation throughout the world. If the AMA no longer has this plan on file, I
will be glad to send you my higher resolution version.