Latest Stories
Adam Savage's Silicon Valley Comic Con 2018 Panel!

Adam's full panel from this year's Sillicon Valley Comic Con! Adam talks about this year's incognito costume walk, collaborating with The Broken Nerd, and answers questions from the audience. Lots of good stories here about making things, Mythbusters, and favorite memories!

The Creature Model Kits at Monsterpalooza 2018!

One of our favorite things about the creature effects show Monsterpalooza is finding awesome resin kits and limited-run figures made talented artists. For those of us who couldn't make it to the show, here are some of the artists you should check out and find their kits online!

Designing Wolverine's Costume from X-Men 2

Ironhead Studio brings a costume out from their archives--Wolverine's costume from X2: X-Men United--to show how designer Jose Fernandez gave the X-Men their evolved look in one of the best superhero films of all time. Jose talks to us about his design approach to this costume and shows us aspects not seen on screen. Plus, we check out one of the helmets Ironhead Studio made for Netflix's Altered Carbon!

Testing the Tilta Gravity G2 Handheld Camera Gimbal

Tested's Joey Fameli tests the Tilta Gravity G2 camera stabilizer, made for DSLRs and other handheld cameras. Using it with his GH5, Joey shows how he's used it in studio and on location and what kind of interesting shots you can get with a gimbaled stabilizer.

Quantum Creations FX's Fallout Pip-Boy Prop

We meet the prop and costume fabricators of Quantum Creations FX, who have worked on films like Watchmen, Tron: Legacy, and Ghostbusters. One prop that caught our eye is this Pip-Boy piece, realistically stylized for use in a Fallout commercial. Quantum Creations FX's founder details the making of this prop and original spacesuits showcasing their costume-making talents.

Ghost in the Shell and Warcraft Props from Weta Workshop!

Weta Workshop made some truly incredible costumes and props for the recent Ghost in the Shell and Warcraft films. We get up close to some of these pieces coming up on auction at Prop Store. From full suits of armor to sci-fi robots, these pieces are full of intricate details that look great in person!

Pat Magee's Creepy Minion Costumes!

Effects artist and creature fabricator Pat Magee makes incredible costumes for his twin boys every year. For this past Monsterpalooza, he unveiled his twisted take on creepy minions! We chat with Pat about the costumes he makes for his kids, as well as a Beetlejuice snake sculpture to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the film!

Towing Micro RC Gliders, Part 1: The Tow Plane

During WWII, large gliders laden with troops and supplies were sent into combat zones. There were many instances of this tactic being used throughout the war. One of the more famous examples occurred on D-Day in 1944. American C-47 transport planes departed England while pulling WACO CG-4A gliders on long tow ropes (two gliders per C-47). The British added their array of gliders and tugs as well. This aerial armada flew across the English Channel and over France, where the gliders were released to disgorge their loads of soldiers, guns, and jeeps into the fields of Normandy.

Several years ago, I designed a simple RC model of the CG-4A with a 65" (1651mm) wingspan. I also have a C-47 model of the same scale (about 1/15.5) that I modified to use as a tow plane for the WACO. Of course, each airplane requires a dedicated pilot. So, a lot of my flying buddies have had an opportunity to control one model or the other. Flying this aerotow rig is a little challenging, tons of fun, and always garners a lot of attention from onlookers.

Downsizing

When I saw a press release for Flyzone's new micro-sized C-47, my first thought was that it would be fun to shrink my WACO design to this scale as well (about 1/50). The wingspan of the C-47 model is 23" (584mm). This results in a comparable glider having a wingspan of just over 20" (508mm).

I've flown lots of micro RC models before. However, this project reflects my first attempt at doing aerotow with tiny airplanes. To be honest, I'm still not sure that it's going to work. Micro models tend to have some idiosyncrasies that may render aerotowing impractical. There's really only one way to know for sure. So I'm forging ahead!

The C-47 is a fun little bird. It flies at speeds much faster than scale.

I began work on the WACO model before my C-47 arrived. In the next article, I'll cover my techniques for creating this little green glider. Perhaps I'll also have a favorable flight report to share. For now, I'll focus on the C-47 in its box-stock form and also after being modified for towing.