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Author Topic: Monsoon 900 build  (Read 49817 times)

tigertiger

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Monsoon 900 build
« on: January 10, 2009, 09:55:28 AM »

The Monsson is a not so cheap RTR yacht out of a small factory in China. There has been a lot of activity on the RCGroups website where the manufacturer has been plugging his boat.
What a I will do here is share my experience of building one of these.

Warts 'n all.

I have seen these on Ebay for $200-250.
I got mine cheap in a job lot from the factory.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2009, 10:19:25 AM »

What's in the box.

A nice FG hull, a three channel radio, sail winch, rudder servos, a stand and some bits.
The first picture does not show the instructions book or the stickers sheet.

All of the stickers, including those already on the boat contain a spelling error. The boat is called the Monsoon 900. The stickers all say Mousooon.

The book of instructions is in very poor Chinglish.

Both of these issues could be easily sorted. But I have so say that this is typical of many small manufactureres here. They only look at cost, cosmetics are secondary. The fact that this tells us a lot more about the company selling the product is lost.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2009, 10:30:09 AM »

Step one is as usual the stand.

If you do this first then you have a nice platform to support the boat for the rest of the build.

The timber for the stand is roughly cut. It does the job.

It is flimsy, but it does the job.

The straps are very thin, but they do the job.
And they also had a tendancy to slide off the tops of the stand side, so I had to glue as well as screw.

The keel weight is also longer than the stand so you need to twist the boat to get the keel bulb clear of the stand, but it does the job.

The screws are steel, not good near water, but they do the job.

Every cost is shaved back to the minimum, and fingers crossed, it does the job.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2009, 10:38:41 AM »

Next step attach the keel bulb to the fin.

The keel bulb is made of iron but is well finished. The fin is also nicely made.

However the steel rod that passes through the fin, that the keel bulb is attached to is only 3mm.
This is very flimsy, but it does the job. I would be much happier if it were 4 mm.

When the keel bulb is fitted it extends beyond the thickness of the keel bulb and needs to be cut off. This could have been done in the factory. Dremel time.
I considered filling the hole in the base of the bulb with epoxy resin. I may yet do so.

What does come with the kit is this little plastic m3 socket to do up the nut.  You can't torque it much, but it does the job. This is the only thing in the kit that is a nice bonus, and thoughtful on the part of the manufacturer.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2009, 10:45:59 AM »

When I tried to insert the keel rod through the hull it would not go.

On inspection the keel tube was glued in place at the bottom with a nice gob of epoxy.
However the top was not attached.

I aligned the tube by inserting a bradawl through the locating hole in the deck. Then I could push the keel rod home.

Guess what. It is longer than it needs to be, so dremel time. This needs to be done as a cap/cover fits over the exposed nut.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2009, 11:04:11 AM »

Now the hull the keel are together, what next.

I had heard tales of the jib turning inside out and the job boom getting caught in the decorative railings and near dragging the boat over.

I was advised to remove them so I did. I started by pulling but actually pulled a hole in the deck which I repaired with epoxy putty. It was grey, but I needed to fill the hole.
2 days later I found an epoxy putty that dries white (Murphy's Law).
The remainder of the rails I twiisted out leaving nicely pugged holes in the fore deck. The deck now has cleaner lines.

As an aside, I found there is probably no need to remove the rails. I think the problem mentioned above was due to incorrect rigging, in part a result of the poor instruction manual (I will post about this later).
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2009, 11:14:14 AM »

The rudder is not quiet as nice as the keel fin and the moulding needed trimming to get rid of a nasty curling at the edge.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2009, 11:19:03 AM »

The rudder shaft has a flat side to make sure it fits securely.

The rudder arm is already fitted to the connector rod, which is also fited to the servo. So this bit is easy.

Note the way the hole cut to allow this has been well trimmed (not). But it does the job.

A plastic disc then fits over the hole for the rudder assembly. This is a different colour plastic, but as this is covered by a sticker (to secure it) it does the job.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2009, 11:33:05 AM »

The mast, for all intents and purposes isn't bad. It is groovy baby.
And non ferrous metal.

But the two halves of the mast are joined by a piece of plastic and two screws.
The plastic inserts into the masts (not shown in photo) and two small (ferrous hence rust) screws make a a slightly wobbly joint. But it does the job.
Hopefully the shrouds will make it firm enough.

The masthead is plastic but fits well into the mast. Secure  :-))
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2009, 11:59:54 AM »

The spreaders on the other hand are not nice at all. Made from what looks to be stamped steel.

The holes have been drilled leaving a sharp bur that should have been filed or ground smooth. I have seen Monsoon shrouds frayed badley after only a few outings.

Mine also came with an apparent twist in the shroud that could only have come from threading the wrong way.

Once again held on by ferrous screws. And these little chaps heads strip, and so don't over tighten them. But they do the job (once or twice).
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2009, 01:35:18 PM »

I decided to strip down the rigging and improve the spreaders.

Before begining I did a rough sketch of all the rigging, what goes where and what is attached where etc.
I always forget afterwards.

I then removed all the poor quality riging line. It looks like string and unravels easily and does not appear strong.

The spreaders were then removed and all the shap edges removed.

I decided that I would cover the spreaders in wood, this would add strength and make the spreaders look straight. The plan was also to drill larger diameter holes in the steel than in the wood, acting as friction reducing thingy.
I have heard of people using a plastic grommet to do this. But I have none at hand.
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2009, 01:46:36 PM »

The ideal wood already tapered for use and in my possession was chopsticks. not perfect, but they will do the job  {-).

I first cut a flat plane side using my minitools circular saw.

I then cut off the ends at slightly different lengths to alter the profiles for upper and lower shrouds (not needed really).

I then glued the metal spreader to the wood.

Following this I then drilled, once all the way through for small diameter, and then just through the steel in a larger diameter. (see JPEG in last post).
The lower spreader has two sets of holes (for 2 shrouds), the upper shrouds one set of holes.

Finally the wood was trimmed to length.

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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2009, 01:56:55 PM »

After this I was ready to reattach the spreaders and re rig. I used 40kg Dacron line (from Sails etc) for the rigging.

Some of the attachment points were tight so I had to slacken off the screw to allow the rigging lines to pass through, before tying off.

This tying off is a bit of a bodge, but is as the original and it does the job.

The attached the shrouds to the deck. There are only two deck mountings. With no other information in the instructions, I attached the top shrouds to the forward mount and the mid and lower shrouds (already on the same snap link) to the mounting slightly abaft.

I then erected the mast and adjusted the shrouds so that it was vertical. To help this I used a spirit level across the hull to check the hull was level and then I used the level again to check the vertical. I don't trust my eyes. :embarrassed:

I also attached the rear stay to the attaching point at the transom.
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Stavros

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2009, 02:05:44 PM »

Cor blimey Mark thats far to technical using a spirit level to check if the mast is straight ;)




Stavros
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amdaylight

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2009, 02:06:34 PM »

Tiger,

Is this your first sailboat? And why did you pick this one? You picked a very very nice looking boat.  :-))  Why not replace the screws that are steel with ones that are either stainless steel or brass?

Andre
over yonder in Portland Oregon

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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2009, 02:07:01 PM »

Hey Stavros, my eyes are much worse than yours.  :o {-)
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2009, 02:13:04 PM »

Hi Andre

This is my third boat.

I manged to get it dirt cheap, so I could not refuse it. A friend got a job lot from the factory.

It is difficult to find regular stuff like stainless or even brass screws in China, and I am also doing this as an exercise in how RTR this RTR boat really is.
If she sails well I will put my hand i my pocket and pay postage for screws.

Yes she looks nice, but like everything in China they look at something good. Copy the look, but have no real conception of who it works. Which is why some nuts and bolts here are still made of cheese  ;D
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2009, 02:14:49 PM »

Cor blimey Mark thats far to technical using a spirit level to check if the mast is straight ;)




Stavros

BTW
I actually find using a level much quicker, and you don't have to keep standing 10 feet away to check.
I know its not critical, but it is easy.
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John C

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2009, 02:16:07 PM »

Very nice Mark..........................but did you remember to soak the cup of coffee first  {-)

Regards
John
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2009, 02:23:11 PM »

Very nice Mark..........................but did you remember to soak the cup of coffee first  {-)

Regards
John

Drat
I knew I had forgotten something.
This is a side project for me. My first love is historic sail. So I probably wasn't giving full attention to the caffeine quotient.
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amdaylight

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2009, 03:09:08 PM »

Tiger,

If you need new screws let me know and I will get what you need and mail them to you, I work in a Hobby shop and some of these we have in stock other wise I can go to a good hard ware store and get you better ones. We also have here in Portland a company that all they do is sell screws, nuts and bolts in all sizes materials.

I also got a real good deal on my Fairwind III which is why I picked it over the others we have in the store. Some of the ones we have look more like ocean racers and this one looks ,ore like a cruising sailboat.

Andre
over yonder in Portland Oregon
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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2009, 10:12:32 PM »

Tigertiger:  Excellent build so far, will be watching  this build progress anxiously to the finish, as it looks like to have great potential. O0  I especially am interested in the fiberglass hall and will be following your progress.  Way to go!   Possible buy for me, lots of luck.
ralph1937
:-))
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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #22 on: January 11, 2009, 11:16:13 AM »

Yes she looks nice, but like everything in China they look at something good. Copy the look, but have no real conception of who it works. Which is why some nuts and bolts here are still made of cheese  ;D
Where have I heard that said before?
(some thread somewhere about a Victor or a Hurricane ok2)
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tigertiger

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2009, 01:14:32 PM »

Correct Martin

It was you. And you were bang on the money :-)). But you were not the first to say it and you won't be the last. ;)
My brother in law was saying exaclty the same thing about Chinese goods 20 years ago when talking about how they were copying machine tools but had no idea about metalurgy.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  {-)

But cloning product is in a slightly different league  :o
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Roger in France

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Re: Monsoon 900 build
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2009, 01:28:38 PM »

tigertiger,

Great write up supported by good photographs. Very informative to have the "warts and all".

I have two worries:
1. How will you eat your dinner now you have sawn up your chopsticks?
2. Are we soon to loose you to a lucrative position re-writing instructions in good (but unamusing) English?

Roger in France.
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