RIP my Libelle DLG

RIP my Libelle discus-launched glider:


Memories of happier times:


As to how that happened, it was due to repeated stupidity on my part. One day I had a crash where the battery popped out of its hot glue mount. I decided to just stuff it back in and continue flying, since “it’ll only take high shock during crashes and I don’t mind having to put it back in after a crash”.

You probably already see the problem with that: it’ll also experience high forces during takeoff. And sure enough, 5 or so flights later when I launched it, the Libelle went in one direction and the battery went in another. It doesn’t fly so well with no control and no nose weight, so after doing some wicked acrobatics it crashed into the ground nose-first, snapping the skid plate clean in half. But that’s not the end of the story.

I had re-glued the skid plate, glued the battery down nice and good, and got another 20 flights out of it before one aileron servo stripped a gear (not sure why, as I thought that the ailerons were the least molested of my control surfaces, unlike say the rudder). But that was okay because I was able to limit the range of travel of that servo (to about -50% to +50%) to avoid the stripped area. That was fine for a while, but a later crash killed the other aileron servo.

So this morning a box of new servos arrived from Dreamflight, and I replaced both stripped aileron servos. I got about 5 beautiful flights out of it before a slight crash caused the nose to snap off along the line it was already broken on. Now you’d think that this time I would have learned about G-forces from the battery incident, but no. I didn’t want to have to go home to fix it properly, so I just taped that nose cone back on. And exactly what you think would happen happened: The nose came off on takeoff, left me with an uncontrollable fall, and the wings and nose tore apart when it crashed.