I’ve had the GWS Me109 now for a while. Most of the time it has been sitting on the rack where I store my models. This was caused more by me than the model. It is down now and flying well now that the pilot’s skills have improved.
I got the Me109 after reading a lot of the reviews in the forums and trying to decide which of the small warbirds would be my first. The Me109 was the choice. Most agreed it was fairly easy to fly and it just looked so cool. Unfortunately, when first built I had trouble even taxiing straight and the first couple of takeoff runs ended up off the runway on pirouetting on the nose. On to the rack until the pilot caught up with the plane. The advice you’ve heard about not moving to warbirds to soon is well founded.
The Me109 went together easily. There are only a few pieces and they fit together well. The GWS adhesive is contact cement so you need to remember to put some on the pieces you are gluing and then let them set before you put the pieces together. Folks fuss about the glue but most of the problems come from not using it correctly. There were a number of firsts for me with this kit. I’ve discovered that the techniques used with the Me109 are used in many GWS kits. For me the big lesson was making sure the cuts and holes for the aileron controls and tail wheel steering are straight and true. TLAR or “that looks about right” is not a good philosophy. As an old carpenter once told me, “Measure twice, cut once.”
Decorating the model was my favorite part. I used a color scheme from the instructions that would match the decals provided with the kit. Several versions came on the large decal sheet. You can choose your own. I also spent some time on this web site learning about the various versions and color schemes before deciding to go with one from the instructions.
The model was formed in gray foam so the base coat was complete. I used a single action airbrush with craft-style water-based acrylic paint that you can find at Wal-Mart or JoAnn’s. I used blue painter’s tape and newspaper for masking. Most of the design was in straight lines so that wasn’t a big struggle. I used a brush to form the camo spots on the fuselage as well as with the bright yellow and black.
The other major change from the plan was the use of a small brushless motor instead of the brushed 350 sized motor with a gear box. I used a BP12 CD –ROM style motor bolted onto the stick-style motor mount and a GWS8060 prop.
I’ve had a couple of “mishaps” with the Me109 and the foam has proven to be quite sturdy. I’ve knocked the wing off once and a little glue was all it took. I also dislodged the motor. I did a little surgery to remove a square piece of foam from the bottom of the nose so I could get an epoxy brush in far enough to remount the stick. Once dry, I simply glued the foam square back in place. Good as new.
The Me109 is as cool looking in flight as it is on the ground. With this motor and prop I spend most of the 4 – 5 minute flights at full power. The 7.4v, 2-cell lipo is cool upon landing. After my first flight I discovered on my landing approach that Me109 doesn’t like to pull hard at low speed. I tip stalled turning to final and hit nose first. Note to self, “Long gentle finals.”
With little damage, the minor repair job offered the chance to change out the aileron servo. The roll rates were very slow and aileron movement seemed sluggish. I exchanged a mini micro for a Hitec HS-55 with a longer servo arm. That made a big difference. The ailerons moved smartly and the throws were greater, too. The first flight after the repairs showed a considerable difference. The Me109 rolled smoothly and quickly. On subsequent take-offs I’ve noticed you need to gather speed smoothly allowing the rudder to gain effectiveness. It got squirrely and ended up in the fence to the left of the take-off direction one occasion.
All in all, the Me109 is a typical foamy warbird. It is easy to build and fun to fly. I have the GWS Corsair in the building queue and with the success of the Me109 the Corsair’s priority has gone up.
|Battery:||7.4 1300 lipo|