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Mike White's Dominator 44

Article by Mike White

rc propjet


The Dominator 44 is the fifth in a line of models designed and built over the past 15 years or so, all of which have the same wing planform. The model is not a scale design, but it does bear some resemblance to the F15 fighter. The 44 inch span model is of all-sheet construction and is great fun to fly!

The wings are made entirely from 3/8" (9mm) sheet balsa. They are simple and quick to make - first the wing planform is cut out, then the sheet balsa is then simply planed to an airfoil section.

The fuselage construction is a simple all balsa box. This is divided into three compartments to form the central fuselage assembly and the two outer ducts. Various balsa formers give stiffness, and the rearmost former to which the motor is attached is made from ply.

rc prop jet

2. Designer and builder Mike White with his sucessful and attractive Dominator 44.

Mike White and his Dominator (click image to enlarge & get more information).

balsa model under construction

3. The Dominator 44 during the building process (click image to return to original size).

The Dominator 44 during the building process (click image to enlarge & get more information).

Power system
To my mind there is no point in building a fighter type model if it is to be flown around like a trainer. No sir, no way!! My usual power loading for this type is around 125 watts per pound of model which gives sprightly performance, although this model has a rather better power loading.

The motor chosen for this model was the EMP B3650/06. This is an inrunner with a Kv of 2,300, rated for a maximum of just over 1,000 watts. The motor is intended for use with 3S-5S lipo batteries. In this model, the motor is supplied with a 3S 4,000mah 30C battery.

When turning an 8x6 APC i/c (gas) prop, the motor draws around 59 Amps, for a power consumption of around 725 watts. The ESC is an 80 amp opto unit. This is housed in one of the side ducts, which also provides it with adequate cooling. The battery is cooled by air entering via a NACA duct under the nose. The warmed air leaves the model on the underside near the finger launching holes.

The battery is fixed to a 3mm liteply base by a Velcro strip and another on the ply base. As `belt and braces` another Velcro strip goes around the base and is fixed to the top of the battery.

RC electric airplane

4. The Dominator 44 features a twin tail.

The Dominator features a twin tail.

fuselage intakes

5. With a colour scheme like this, there's no mistaking which way up the model is!

With a colour scheme like this, there's no mistaking which way up the model is!

The RC gear is all powered by a 1,000mAh hydride battery. Control is throttle, aileron and elevator.

For belly landing models I like to use metal geared servos. I’ve used TowerPro 90MG servos for this model, one for each surface. So far, no servos have suffered stripped gears.

The finish is doped tissue, a little filler and Humbrol enamel paint brushed on.

Setting up
Finding the best balance position was a little worrying at first on all of these models. In the end it was achieved by using the formula for finding the balance of a delta wing, plus a little bit added forward for the long nose and side wings, plus a little bit added aft for the tail area plus a little bit more added forward for mum; just to be on the safe side………very scientific!

dominator 42 rc electric prop jet

6. Another shot of the good-looking Dominator 44, showing off its attractive colour scheme.

Another shot of the good-looking Dominator.

rc model intakes

7. The Dominator's intakes. The left hand intake houses the ESC, which receives plenty of cooling air.

The Dominator's intakes.

Up until now, the model has always been bungee launched. However one day, when the wind is up a little and I have some more flying experience with it I may get someone to do a hand launch for me. This should be no problem, really, as there is so much thrust available at full throttle the model should get away well.

The model has a thin, fast wing. The leading edge has a small radius, so this means the stall has to be carefully avoided especially during the approach and in low speed flight. To this end some down flap is mixed with low throttle position which, after some trial (and happily no errors) has proved helpful.

rc model receiver bay

8. The Dominator's receiver bay is located below the twin fins.

Dominator receiver bay.

RC electric prop jet airplane

9. Dominator waiting patiently for its next mission.

Dominator witing patiently for its next mission.

The total effective wing area is 680 square inches and the flying weight is 4lb 3oz. This results in a wing loading of a very acceptable 16 ounces/sq.ft. The power loading is 180 watts/pound.

You can see the other models which lead up to the Dominator 42 here.


Dominator technical data
Span 1,120 mm 44 inches
Length 000 mm 00 inches
Wing Area
0.00 sq m 3.47 sq ft (500 sq in)
Flying Weight 0,000g 4lb 3oz (67oz)
Wing Loading 00g/dm 16 oz/sq ft
Flight Battery 3S 4,000 mAh LiPo
Motor EMP B3650/06 (Kv 2,300)
Prop 7x6, approx 18,000 rpm
Max Power 59A / 725 Watts
Power Loading 000 W/kg Approx 180 W/lb
Endurance Approx 8min
Control functions Elevator, ailerons & throttle. 1,000mAh 4-cell NiMH receiver battery

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