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- Packing just the essentials distinguishes the seasoned pro from the rookie.
- This one has been set up for lefties - reversing the panels is easy.
Happy with a recent ProStand purchase, Bob
McDaniel of St. Leonard, MD called inquiring what I thought
of the pictures. Confused, I quickly scanned my inbox and spying an unopened
envelope hurriedly tore it open. Inside were photos, which because I've been
scratch-building since the early 70s meant I immediately knew I was dealing with
as major leaguers play at a higher level than minor league baseball players,
there's a hierarchy within aero modeling. The crème de la crème are without
question master-modelers; those who recreate rare or unusual aircraft (versus
just another P-51 Mustang) without benefit of plans or a kit, e.g. out of their
heads with the aid of 3-views and photographs. It ain't easy, believe
For master modelers, more than half the battle is seeking out subjects, which
are unusual. Take, for example, Bob's twin boon 1935 Crusader,
which I bet few folks even knew existed as an aircraft. This thing was created
during the Golden Age of aviation (roughly, the 20 years preceding WWII) and has
a story worthy of Hollywood because it's loaded with intrigue,
backstabbing, government contracts, and big names of the time like Earhart and
Hughes. Anyway, the guys who create this class of model aren't just a breed
of their own but are few and far between. Thus, when the opportunity to chat
with one arises, I listen carefully.
What I heard was a story worth sharing. For example, Bob called to
compliment us on the ProStand, which I consider a pretty high
quality endorsement when you consider the source. But there was more to it than
that because, as Bob explained, he'd been knocking together airplane stands for
decades and thus, knew what worked, and more importantly, what didn't. For
example, below is a photo of another of Bob's unusual models, this time a rare
low-wing Luscombe 10, which he designed and scratch built to
quarter scale. The mode features a 7-foot wingspan and to support the fuselage
he'd knocked together a custom stand using plywood.
plywood stands aren't hard to gin up, lining the hard edge on which the fuselage
rests to protect against damage can be tricky, even for a pro. For example, foam
weatherstripping is popular but it eventually deteriorates. Worse, it
always seems to fall off (once it loses its 'sticky', but invariably, while
everything looks fine) just as you place your pride and joy into it. This
is when it quits, with the end result being a fuselage ding . . .
Featuring custom-molded soft silicone saddles, which locks onto the keyed
edge of the stand, the silicone is quite 'grippy' and because it's
pliable, conforms to the model without marking or otherwise damaging it.
Naturally, this is a very important characteristic because experience
shows, saddle foam failure is the leading cause of fuselage dents
when in the workshop. Anyway, Bob also sent pictures of his 84" wingspan
Bandito Grande cradled in the ProStand. While it's
about the same size as his quarter scale Luscombe 10, there's more
to the story.
- Comfortably cradled on a
ProStand, the 84" wingspan Bandito Grande is
a thing of beauty
Bob went on to explain how inverting his model in the ProStand to
work on it was his primary use, but how he also stored his model on the stand.
Thus, basically using it as a charging cradle. It's perhaps also worth
noting how adjusting the length is easy too, e.g. to better clear the
canopy or scale features like antennas, because the two horizontal
braces are slotted where they mate using a pair of grade-8 Allen head bolts
to securely clamp the two pieces together.
- Soft silicone saddles securely grip the
Finally, Bob wanted to let us know how impressed he was with the overall
sturdiness of his ProStand because he also used it to break-in and
adjust the OS MAX 120 four-stroke engine (this, before taking his
model to the flying field to ensure the engine was fine tuned and ready). This
is a great testament of just how strong a ProStand actually
- Easily strong enough
for starting and running-in an engine prior to taking your model to the