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Rocket Kits + Accessories - Airplanes and Rockets

Skiddin' II Racing Hydroplane
August 1954 Air Trails

August 1954 Air Trails
August 1954 Air Trails Cover - Airplanes and RocketsTable of Contents

These pages from vintage modeling magazines like Flying Aces, Air Trails, American Modeler, American Aircraft Modeler, Young Men, Flying Models, Model Airplane News, R/C Modeler, captured the era. All copyrights acknowledged.

Model boat plans are more difficult to come by than model airplane plans, so seeing this article in the August 1954 issue of Air Trails magazine for a small, free-running hydroplane was a nice find. Its simple, inexpensive construction makes it a quick build for those rare modelers that still build their own models out of wood. The Skiddin' II can easily accommodate a modern miniature radio control system and a brushless motor setup. The original model was designed for a transom-mounted glow fuel outboard engine, but those things make model boat plans look plentiful. If you really want an outboard, try eBay, and be prepared to pay a couple hundred bucks for it.

Skiddin' II Racing Hydroplane

Skiddin' II Racing Hydroplane, from August 1954 Air Trails - Airplanes and Rockets
By Frank Ehling

Who's skiddin' who? We're skiddin', too. We mean we've been having lots of fun racing this free-running scale-like outboard racing shell. Although you can put a bridle on Skiddin' II and run it in circles on the end of a tether line from a center post, the real thrill comes from letting this speedster operate on its own. That photo above shows the craft making a turn in a sheltered cove. It was running with engine turned to produce a 4-foot circle.

Free-running miniature outboard racer - Airplanes and Rockets

Free-running miniature outboard racer can be turned out in an evening, will give you months of exciting operation

This boat is somewhat longer than the average, We wanted a real stable craft so the beginner in speed boating would have an easy time getting started, The extended length helps prevent the boat from flipping (in an inside loop!).

We used Berkeley's 1/20" thick mahogany veneer for top decking and bottom covering. No splicing was necessary since the wood is available in good size widths. It requires only staining and fuel proofing. Keep your cement off the outside surfaces and edges of the mahogany or you'll mar its final appearance.

Five quick steps make up the boat: cement bulkheads to bottom; add stringers; cement in cockpit sides; then add the top deck; follow with the hull sides.

Elongated design was evolved to produce more stable craft - Airplanes and Rockets 

Elongated design was evolved to produce more stable craft which would not loop-the-loop when running in choppy water.

Note of caution: when changing the boat's heading (direction), don't lift the screw (prop) from the water if engine is still running. If you operate in a pool with cement sides or rock edging, protect your racer with a sponge-rubber bumper cemented to bow.

Skiddin' II Racing Hydroplane Plans - Airplanes and Rockets

Skiddin' II Racing Hydroplane Plans

Vintage Outboard Model Boat Engines (Sherline Products) - Airplanes and Rockets

Vintage Outboard Model Boat Engines (Sherline Products)



Posted September 8, 2023
(updated from original post on 3/29/2014)

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Even during the busiest times of my life I have endeavored to maintain some form of model building activity. This site has been created to help me chronicle my journey through a lifelong involvement in model aviation, which all began in Mayo, MD ...

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