Vintage Eyeball Mark V

For those of you who are interested in vintage RC pattern airplanes, you might recall Art Schroeder’s Eyeball, circa 1970. The original kits have long been out of production, but Eureka Aircraft Company in Arkansas currently reproduces a wide variety of vintage airplane kits, including the Eyeball. I received my Eyeball kit last April after a 6 week wait. Eureka gives you a heads-up regarding the long wait – they cut the balsa and plywood parts (CNC) for each kit after they receive your order. Eureka produces a high quality kit including top-notch Bud Nosen contest balsa, so it is well worth the wait. The only shortcoming is that you must print your own plans from their .pdf file and provide your own hardware, including the landing gear.

Art Schroeder’s Eyeball was rather unique for the era. The motor, wing and horizontal stabilizer are all mounted on the fuselage centerline and are set at zero incidence. The motor has no thrust line offset. This design was quite competitive against Phil Kraft’s Kwik-Fly and Joe Bridi’s Chaos.

I modified my Eyeball by going electric, plus the modern technique of tail mounted servos and dual outboard aileron servos. Ready-to-fly weight is 6.4 lbs. The nitro versions (60-size) ranged between 6.6 lbs. and 7.5 lbs. Power is provided by a Leopard 5065-520 brushless motor swinging an APC 12 x 8e prop on 6S. I finished the airplane today (10-24-2020).

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