ExCali VTPR Glider Project

ExCali VTPR Glider #1 at Ellwood Mesa from surfimp on Vimeo.

ExCali build thread on RCGroups

Five years ago on March 21st, 2007, I launched this site with the goal of making it the best source of R/C slope and glider aerobatics content in the English language. Today the site features great slope aerobatics content from all over the world and helps bring us together so we can enjoy all that is going on. And there is quite a lot these days!!

So, in celebration, I’m pleased to announce the latest collaboration between Swiss Peter and myself. We are undertaking our most ambitious project yet, a California reinterpretation of the world famous Excalibur VTPR glider from the mecca of voltige tres pres du relief: Bretagne, France.

Our glider will be named ExCali, which in Latin means From Cali and of course also pays tribute to the name of the original Excalibur designed by Eric Poulain.

We have been collaborating closely with Rémi Le Besque, the pilot of the red Excalibur 2 from the famous Ménez-Hom 2005 video. Rémi is following in the long tradition of really cool French aerobatics pilots in generously sharing his time and enthusiasm with us as we undertake this project. Merci beaucoup, Rémi! :)

The ultimate objective is a 2.5m glider with molded fuselage and wood sheeted wings, the time honored construction technique of large and durable slope gliders worldwide.

Span: 2.5m
Length: 1.48m
Weight: ~1700g
Airfoils: TP42 – 9% (root), TP29 – 9% (tip)
Madslide-style stabilizer capable of 180* rotation

Printable PDF of the ExCali fuselage shape: ExCali ZIP file (10MB). Costs about $5 to print out at your local Kinko’s or equivalent.

The design will encompass best-of-breed features of the Excalibur 1 & 2, the Madslide, the Voltij, the Wasabi and the Le Fish. We intend it to be the most cutting edge VTPR glider produced up to this point, synthesizing all that has been learned in recent years about VTPR and Madflight.

We are first building EPP prototypes to test ideas and then, when we are satisfied, we will proceed with mold production. As you can see above, the first prototype, built by Swiss Peter, has been completed and flown. It’s a lot of fun! We have more in the works :)

Next summer, August 2013, my family and I will travel to Finistère, Bretagne where we will spend a nice holiday on the coast. There I will introduce the ExCali to the locals at Ménez-Hom and fly it alongside the French pilots who have been such an important inspiration to us.

Steve “Surfimp” Lange

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