SPAD Devestator Building Instructions


The Devastator is a wild lightweight entry into .40 class  combat competition. It was born as a result of designing smaller lighter planes  for RCCA "B" class combat. Tim "Grim Reaper" Tong decided to take the Coroplast®  fuselage we were using for the smaller planes, and scale it up to the Spad Dart  dimensions. The result is the hottest flying
"Outlaw" class combat plane we have ever seen! Our prototype was  equipped with a ThunderTiger® GP .42™, a 6 oz. fuel tank, and a standard sized  Hitec® flight pack. All  Coroplast® parts are made from 4mm Coroplast®. It  weighed in at 3.9 lbs. and is an excellent way to get involved for a minimum  amount of money. Flight performance is out of this world, and will provide any  pilot with the wickedest of planes with which to get in the mix. The Devastator,  as well as these instructions, are recommended for experienced pilots/builders.  If you are new to building with PVC and Coroplast, please review the "hints and  tips" section of this website!


The Devastator fuselage is constructed from a 30" piece of  Coroplast® with the flutes running in the lengthwise
direction. The fuselage is folded into a square "tube" to fit the inside  diameter of the PVC gutter pipe. Since the
inside diameter of the gutter pipe can vary, we did not put a width  dimension on the fuselage layout drawing.
Determine this dimension, and the location of the corner folds, by using  a thin strip of scrap Coroplast® and fold it
to  achieve a square which will provide a snug fit into the inside diameter of the  gutter pipe you will be using. Once
you have  determined the width, and locations of the corner fold locations, use your  "experimental" scrap piece to
layout your  fuselage. Be sure to "flame" all areas of gutter pipe and Coroplast® to be  glued, with a propane or
butane torch prior to  gluing with medium CA. We have also found that scoring and folding two flutes  for each
fuselage fold works great. 1/2" plywood  is used for the firewall, and a 2" piece of PVC gutter pipe is used as  a
"cowl" for firewall strength. There is no down  or right thrust. The firewall is cut to the inside diameter of the
gutter pipe, and is mounted flush with the front edge of  the "cowl". The firewall is mounted with four #6 x 1/2"
self tapping screws, one on each side of the "cowl". Be carefull not to  hit an engine mount screw, throttle pushrod,
or  fuel line. The fuselage is glued into the "cowl" with the foreward edge butted  up against the firewall. The wing
hold down  reinforcements are made from a 3/4" wide piece of PVC gutter pipe. The easiest  way to make them is to
cut a 3/4" piece off of  your stick of gutter pipe, then cut it in two!  Once they are glued in place,  use the fuselage flutes as a guide and drill for the wing hold down dowells two  flutes from the top edge of the fuselage. Cut out the radio access hole as shown  on the fuselage drawing.  The engine is centered on the firewall. The fuel tank  is
wrapped in foam to achieve a snug fit inside  the fuselage.  For combat streamer attachment, we simply glue a small
piece of PVC scrap to the left side of the rear fuselage,  and drill a small hole in it.


You have two choices to use for your Devastator wing. The  wing shown in the wing drawing was used on the prototype.  It is constructed  from one piece of Coroplast® with the flutes running in the spanwise direction.  A 36 inch standard yardstick is used for the spar, with four one inch pieces of  yardstick used for spar supports, as shown on the drawing. The ailerons are  hinged simply by cutting away one side of the Coroplast® flute! For a more rigid  wing, with the flutes running in the chordwise direction, simply build a  Dominator wing (see the Dominator wing building instructions and drawing), as  all chordwise dimensions are the same. Use the Defender spar configuration, and  please note that the wing center reinforcement is used only on the top to save  weight. We leave the wing tips open, also to save weight. Flame the plastic and  use medium CA for all glue areas.  USE SMALL 1/8" DROPS EVERY INCH OR SO.  A BEAD OF GLUE MAY NOT  WORK! USING TOO MUCH GLUE IS THE BIGGEST MISTAKE HERE! Cut a hole  just aft of the spar for a snug aileron servo fit, with the ears of the servo  resting on the plastic. Secure the servo in place using a zip-tie, and PVC  zip-tie doubler as shown in the drawing. Fabricate aileron control horns from  scrap PVC, and glue in place. Flame the horns and ailerons  before gluing! This is VERY important, as we  don't use screws or backplates to save weight!  Cut a small hole in the bottom  of the wing aft of the servo for the aileron servo lead to pass through.  Insert  a 5/23" dowel into the foreward most, and aft flute of the wing center  reinforcement to prevent the wing rubberbands from crushing the Coroplast®. We  feel that the spanwise flute wing may be slightly stronger, and is certianly  easier to build. However, the reason we like the chordwise flute wing, is  because the nature of the leading edge fold creates ridges, which greatly aid in  grabbing your enemies streamer or leader string!  The chordwise flute wing is  also less prone to wing rubberband crush.


The Devastator tail is cut from an 18" x 9" piece of  Coroplast® as shown in the tail drawing. Score and fold the center section as  shown on the drawing, and hinge the elevators by cutting away one side of the  Coroplast®
flutes. Fabricate two 6" x 1" PVC  tail doublers, and bend them to a 45 degree angle using a propane or  butane
torch. Glue the doublers in place to  achieve the Devastator's V-tail.  Fabricate two elevator control horns from  scrap PVC. Glue the horns in place, and glue the tail to the fuselage using  medium CA. Flame the tail, horns, doublers, and fuselage before gluing!  This is VERY important, as we are not using backplates or  screws to save weight!

Radio Installation:

The elevator servo is mounted to the top of the fuselage  using standard servo screws. Cut a servo hole, and use a
piece of PVC for the aft mount, and mount the foreward side of the servo  to the rear PVC wing hold dowel
reinforcement.   The throttle servo is stuck in place inside the fuselage using double sided foam  mounting tape. You
may wish to reinforce the  throttle servo mounting using a PVC doubler and zip-tie, similar to the aileron  servo
mounting in the wing. The battery and  receiver are simply stuck in place using double sided foam mounting tape.  Use
the battery positioning to achieve the  proper CG. Your Devastator should balance level at the forward top spar  line!
Slightly nose heavy is OK, tail heavy is UNACCEPTABLE and DANGEROUS!  Your antenna can be routed out  through
the fuselage by poking a small hole in a  Coroplast® flute near your receiver, and running the antenna down the
flute, and it will exit out the back of the fuselage. Mount  your switch where convenient along the side of the
fuselage. Use two pushrods, originating from the same side of the servo,  for elevator control. Keep in mind that you will have to drill your elevator  horn holes to compensate for differing travels, when using two pushrods. Or you  may
wish to fabricate a "wishbone" pushrod for  your elevators.  Rig your ailerons and elevators and throttle to your  satisfaction. The Devastator ailerons are very responsive, so be ready for it!   The nature of a V-tail makes the elevators less responsive than a conventional  elevator, so they can be rigged with a considerable amount of throw!

NOTE: When  rigging your ailerons, ensure that the bottom of the ailerons are parallel to  the top of the fuselage!  Do not allow then to droop (like flaps)!   If your  ailerons droop, they will drastically affect pitch  trim!

Flying the Devastator:
Make sure your throttle is rigged to shut your engine OFF  for landing, and your prop is clocked to stop in the horizontal position. ALWAYS FOLLOW ALL AMA SAFETY RULES AND REGULATIONS!  Mount  your wing with at
least 12 (6 per side) #64  rubber bands! The ThunderTiger® GP .42™ was plenty of power for our Devastator  prototype, and at full throttle, it climbed out perfectly with a slight hand  launch.  The Devastator will perform any maneuver a combat pilot could desire,  tighter than any other combat plane on the planet, and float in for a gentle  dead stick landing after engine shutdown.  If your enemies are balsa or foam,  they better hope they don't get in your way!  IF YOU ARE NEW  TO COMBAT, AND HAVE NOT FLOWN THIS TYPE OF AIRCRAFT BEFORE, PLEASE ENLIST THE  HELP OF A QUALIFIED INSTRUCTOR!  It is also highly recommended that you  add some bold graphics to the top of your wing for in flight  orientation!

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