Now, I haven't worked in the field in several decades (not since being run over by that drunken judge really). It should work, as Goodyear (?) had a rubber air pressure stressed wing airplane in the sixties that I worked on the concept and drawings for that air dropped inflateable rescue plane. By the way, it must make use of lawn mower engines, and I must pilot it and I weigh a substantial 255 lbs. I have nothing in the way of ability to calculate the likelihood of failure and my funding is nearly nil.
Don't worry about me though, I've got food, lodging (courtesy of the State Mental Hospital and CHCS's shelter plus care!) and I'm a Bell Ringer for the Salvation Army (they tell me I'm even famous) - so perhaps even God has heard of me and is on my side! I have always counted on humor to get me out of tough scrapes, and I'd hope that a cardboard and duck tape airplane might be a worthy medium. If on the other hand, this project has already been done there is no use reinventing the wheel so please send me any details you might have of any former attempts. PS:I thank the fellow in that other forum for redirecting my inquiry here; but, please forgive my bad spelling and grammer and don't get too mad that the other forum passed the buck on this one! Interesting task for cardboard, but then I guess with the right planning anything is possible.
Join Date Dec 2003 Location Taree Airport Australia Posts 271 Now this is getting interseting! So, while that by definition precludes the use of steel cables for load bearing, (ie:a wire braced biplane) you probably still have the ability to install some 'Hardpoints', like bits of plywood, to attach motors, seatbelts (better safe than sorry!), wheel axles and so on.
I had thought of many places you would need hardpoints, but with a bit of planning many of these could also be cardboard like control pushrods (rolled up paper tubes), undercarriage legs (use a mono wheel with tip skids, even the wheel could be cardboard!!), control belcranks (make them REAL big to cut down point pivot loads).
As for your 'Duct' tape, here in Australia if you say duct tape, we tend to think of a plastic coated adhesive tape that has a cotton cloth backing with a very 'gummy' adhesive, that is very similar to a product we refer to as '100 mph tape'. This is of far better quality having more threads per inch (but still of cotton) and a finer grade of adhesive that is less likely to creep. BUT, while 100 mph tape is good, it is not as strong as fibreglass reinforced PACKING tape, which would be more in keeping with the 'built from boxes' concept, as well as being about a quarter of the price! This stuff has some serious tenslie strength so multiple layes of it would make good lower spar caps, as for compressive loads I would look at 'bundles' of cardboard tubes (minimum x3) tightly cross spiral (ie; both directions) wrapped to form top spar caps or more likely multiple top skin 'stringers' for the wing. Lots of bits and pieces to carry other bits and pieces and extra bits supposedly for stabilty and the like.
The next year, our team bit the dirt with an chunk of corrugated cardboard and duct tape, which showed little planning and way too much weight.
Although not exactly cardboard as most of us klnow it, a full scale paper airplane has already been done by Molt Taylor and Jerry Holcomb. A simplified version might be possible but should not be taken lightly (sorry about the pun) as the paper has a very low modulus and so, unlike more conventional airplane materials, would have to be designed for panel buckling more so than anything else. The task should be possible but will most likely have a very limited life and will be structurally very marginal. I like the delta idea but it will require quite a bit more power due to the characteristics of that particular configuration. Actually, there was a stipulation in the bet that multiple small lawn mower engines be utilized as power plants. As for the layout, I was going with a conventional monoplane with no landing gear similar to what I helped design in rubber and polyester for the US armed forces at the end of the Viet Nam war. Either way it's definitely an outlaw venture; I'm quite sure the FAA would frown on me flying again, even if it weren't in a cardboard airplane.
Join Date Dec 2003 Location Taree Airport Australia Posts 271 You mention some Vietnam time inflatables?, were these the GoodYear machines?

If so, I remember that they relied on external wire bracing as well as the internal pressurising. As for motors, if you have to use lawnmower engines, I would tend towards using two strokes where possible. With bigger carbs and a non restrictive exhaust, you could get around 10 hp from a 144cc model.
You guys are nuts, however I was bet 3 years ago I couldn't build a flyable airplane from strickly home depot materials. Card board is heavy and useless in my humble opinion, I prefer foam, however it can be done, if you honeycomb several parts including the spar, build it as if it were a sailplane and utilize all methods possible to save weight, like covering it with brown masking paper, which is a dirivitive of cardboard.
Plenty of cardboard my be obtained behind appliance stores, or simply by asking for it at you're local big screen TV store. I like the idea about using height advantages except for one small thing: one changes altitude too much for adequate safety in terms of engine reliability. Instead, as with the rubber airplane, I would gain speed advantage through a ground launch assist; either by bungee or as per the Wright Fliers through a dropping weight. I know that the rubber plane concept would be possible in paper; reinforced paper is comparable enough to polyester in terms of tensile strength. Although there were rigging wires on the rubber plane they were mostly to keep the engine pod pointed in the right direction and upright! No, the craft would have flown with no wires at all, but the internal pressures might have needed to be different to keep that engine from eating the airframe. I have already thought of using thin film photovoltaic but I'm happy the idea doesn't sound too kooky to work to others. Join Date Dec 2003 Location Taree Airport Australia Posts 271 Just had a bit of a dig around, and there has been a few attempts at making inflatable aircraft. Someone mentioned Goodyear, I believe we asked Goodyear, but they wouldn't build it, so we started with BF Goodrich. Essentially, the Princeton wing is a tight fabric that uses one combo spar and leading-edge with a root rib, wing-tip and a cable or rope to keep the trailing edge tight. As the air flows across the wing, the fabric adjusts itself into the most efficient airfoil for that portion of the wing, independantly, across the entire span, adjusting for the airspeed and all.
If you could get away with filling the cardboard tubing with triple-expanding foam, the resulting pressure and foam core will add strength, while adding minimal weight.
Turn your spare cardboard into a boat and a grab a paddle because this weekend is the fourth annual Riverhead Cardboard Boat Race. The popular event organized by the Riverhead Business Improvement District draws thousands to the Peconic Riverfront for a day of fun, food and friendly competition.
Heh, I wasn't aware this had gotten much interest!If I may, I'd like to add that after constructing this boat, my father and I made another version of this as a kayak, skinned with bed sheets and house paint. I plan to form a sharp conical main spar of corrugated cardboard with formers formed of bidirectional outlaid corrugated cardboard and a glued and taped stressed skin of packing tub type cardboard with bidirectional corrugation and water seal the lot with duck tape. It's kinda like a small scale Junkyard Wars, and they are supposed to construct a glider from the junkpile provided. As for engine mounts I was thinking sandwiching the compressed cardboard between the engine and a portion of the lawnmower base. I like the idea of making a documentary of the project (the last forum suggested this) and maybe I'll finance the project that way. I know that there are reinforced card-boards used in shipping crates used for furniture; I used to work with furniture. The tail was kept trim with wires, but again, this was not really required for flight, though it did help with stability of the flight controls, but I don't need to fly quite as fast as the speed that plane was intended to be able to achieve in a dive.

In fact, I've already been talking about a business loan to the government for several years, with just that point in mind.
I can't believe I forgot this, as it was one of the principle argument I had with the fellow I was working with. What materials, did you get your own mechanical characteristics, or just what the producer supplies? In addition to the prizes awarded to the fast paddlers, trophies are handed out for the most creative boat, best-costumed crew and even for best-themed boat. If he had the right supplies, chances are he'd come up with something very similar to this PVC and duct tape boat. We ended up taking first place in the Rio Grande Raft Race with it in the homemade category!Thanks for the repost!
I've a feeling that you'll be hard pressed to put an engine on it, but then with enough laminations i guess you could make sufficiently strong mounting points. But there was an airplane that flew with bungee assisted takeoff way back when with a three cylinder Franklin of quite a low rating and that carried two people; so I figure it all should even out. I would use the paper in place of the polyester and the duct tape in place of the rubber, sort of.
I would lauch myself (with a parachute on my back) from the highest point in america, and try to keep it gliding for the .5 you required, as the solar powered prop helps you maintain, and rising heat to keep you aloft. Wouldn't want the carb to need preheat or variable jetting; I like the idea of saying I didn't cheat!
Using different materials, like diamond fibers and Mylar the weight becomes an issue only when inflated. I wanted them, he said the angle was wrong and they wouldn't work anyway, and that they might snag stuff on takeoff. I plan to make it as big as possible, like an old O-40odd series observation ship, and count on economy of scale to make it light enough. Again, I know that Briggs and Stratton do not make an approved engine, but at 500 feet above sea level there shouldn't be that much difference in operation - it should work.
Generally speaking, Cheating is not wrong, (despite societies thoughts) finding new ways to cheat and win, is adapting and overcoming obstacles in the shortest amount of time.
I argued that the wings would bend under pressure and then the wires would work, as the angles would inherently change. The prototype canoe is made from PVC pipe, plastic sheeting, cord, and two empty one-gallon milk jugs with lids.
As one can see on the films of the airplane, it did just as predicted, and as my partner was the test pilot, he was a tad happy when those wings stopped bending.
And let's not forget MacGyver's favorite thing—duct tape.If you've even got the slightest bit of aquaphobia in you, I wouldn't suggest trying this makeshift watercraft out. I've opperated these engines both here and in Monson on the hill and that is over 500 feet higher than here I would hazard a guess.
At that time we will no doubt have no use for ejection seats with parachute packs on board, and our civilian craft will finally have total redundancy in their systems, right down to the airframes. But if you're more than comfortable on the open water in a boat made of plastic, then continue on to the instructions on how to build your own at Duckworks.

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