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Author Topic: Thimble...  (Read 7071 times)

Patrick Henry

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Thimble...
« on: April 23, 2010, 01:17:08 PM »

Anybody remember a fast electric called "Thimble", designed by Les Jones? It goes way back in time...anybody ever build one?

I think I might have a go at it...what do you reckon, fellas?


Rich



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knoby

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2010, 06:26:59 PM »

hi rich, I had 2 of them. Built the first 1 from the plan, had a cyclone 20 in it & 8 saft bvy cells. To be honest it never realised its true potential for me, it was a g8 boat,for naviga steering but due to its small length it wasn't to happy in any form of choppy water. also had a habit of submarining itself. At the time there were very limited motors & props available so it was hard to develop its potential. that said it ran well on a p30 prop.

The second 1 was a lot different. I won a fiber glass hull for 1 in a club raffle. the glass was so thick it was never going to be a viable electric racing boat, so i put an OS 10 ic in it. That was much more like it !!! a real handful to drive but great fun. Eventually it obliterated itself when it lost an argument with a concreate jetty.

It certainly wouldn't be competitive with modern Eco hulls, but I'm sure it would make a good performer using modern hardware & they are easy to build.

Sorry cant find any pics, Ill ask the 'old man ' see if i cant find some

cheers Glenn
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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2010, 06:38:06 PM »

Good grief Glenn, I never expected anyone to have heard of Thimble, let alone have two of them! I thought it may be make a good fun type boat(after the failure of my airboat)to throw in the car and have something to charge about the lake with.

I built it's bigger brother 'Squadge' many years ago, that was fun...nothing dramatic and certainly not that competitive, but just a fun boat.

I've ordered the plan, got the Tamiya motor, got a shaft and coupling, battery pack and a couple of props, the only change I think I may make is use plasticard instead of wood...I hate wood and it hates me!

I'd appreciate a pic or two if you can find any...cheers Glenn,


Rich
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knoby

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2010, 06:46:25 PM »

Hi Rich, I was a memeber of milton keynes model society at the time & there were a few of them in the club. I beleive it was a free plan in model boats with a feature around late 70's early 80's, but cant be more specific than that.
I'll certainlky look  for the pics, but if they exist my dad has them & it will take a while to get to him , find them & scan them  so dont hold your breath.
Always thought they'd make a great 1 make class, & with modern motors & cells it would be fun.
By the way, when you float 1 for the first time dont be alarmed it most of it seem underwater, they all were like that
 cheers Glenn

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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2010, 06:53:01 PM »

I know it was a good few years ago when the plan was published Glenn, I remember seeing Les Jones at a Cygnets race meet at Mote Park in Maidstone with the prototype of Thimble...it was that small and that low in the water other competitors had a job seeing the perishing thing! It was quite impressive though for a tiny boat, it flew round the course and made a few other drivers take notice of it, especially when it passed a few of them!

Thanks for your help Glenn, much appreciated...

Rich
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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2010, 05:20:30 PM »

I think the 'bug' by Nick Rees is a much better boat.

Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2010, 07:37:19 PM »

Maybe it is...but it's not what I want, Andy.


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normanoo4

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2011, 07:16:14 PM »

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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2011, 07:22:24 PM »

Thanks Norman, I have the original plan and the magazine write up for Thimble.

I bet it wouldn't half go with a brushless/lipo set up...hmm.


Thanks for the link anyway, much appreciated.





Rich
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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2012, 01:32:32 PM »

It's that nostalgic moment...

May I present Thimble...with an original Cyclone 15 motor, built to plan specs with the alloy turn fin and a 30x plastic prop.

And before you ask, I didn't build it, I picked it up on ebay for 14. Vintage racing, anybody?







Rich
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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2012, 01:53:03 PM »

Small pack of 2S lipo, ESC, mini servo and 2.4ghz RX and it should go better than the original equipment, with a big weight saving.

The hull could handle more, but what about the operator?

Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2012, 02:09:07 PM »

Small pack of 2S lipo, ESC, mini servo and 2.4ghz RX and it should go better than the original equipment, with a big weight saving.

The hull could handle more, but what about the operator?

I'd kinda like to keep it original, I think...Les's original version had two four cell packs of 1.2v 1.2a/h cells, and a servo operated microswitch set up for speed control. Ooh...no, I lied...it had TWO microswitches, one for full power and the other via a resistor for half power. It ran for a smidge over four minutes on a fully charged cell pack.

Now...who was it...a chap called Paul Bridgewater, I think...he built a Thimble with a ic motor in it. Now that was hairy...I believe it had an OS .15 motor in it. And I think I'm right in saying that Les had an ic powered version as well.

As for this operator...well, it'll be doubtful if he could handle it with a lipo pack in it, and I'm pretty sure that the lake owners wouldn't like it either. Remember the troubles I had with George and his Robbe Jet Ski?



Rich

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2012, 04:03:35 PM »

The lipos won't deliver significantly more juice than the Nicads, in fact slightly less, because it will be 7.4 volts instead of 9.6 volts.

I find a 2S 5A 15C pack of Lipo's takes up the same sort of footprint as an old 7.2 volt pack of sub-c nicads, but weighs less and lasts for four times longer. Instead of a few minutes of frantic fun, you'll get half an hour or more.

The weight saving shold help handling, and top speed.

An esc will give you better speed control without the built in central heating.

But it's your boat. I like to see old designs, but I think they're more exciting when paired up with the advances in technology, which were just a pipe dream back in the '70's.

Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2012, 08:10:47 AM »

Now, here's interesting...further to the discussions above, I've discovered this little electronical "thing".

I'm thinking it may be a BEC?




Rich
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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2012, 08:16:13 AM »

There's also this little device...I guess a home brewed esc?









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knoby

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2012, 09:51:45 AM »

Hi Rich, nice to see a Thimble again. I used to race the Naviga Christmas tree course with one of these back in the day when i had quick reactions  :-))
It had 2 speeds, stop & go.
I think the second 'Gizmo' is an electronic switch for motor, the esc's at that time weren't up to the job, so most people used a servo operated micro switch or an electronic switch.
The first item, i am not so sure about, but my hunch is its a BEC.
Personally, I am with you & would run it as it was designed, although I would be tempted to use a higher capacity cell that 1.2 ah. as the run times were very short. That said with a small brushless set up & lipo's, I am sure it would surprise a few people.

Cheers Glenn
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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2012, 11:00:38 AM »

First item looks like a BEC to me. Second item looks like a relay switcher for motor control.

Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2012, 10:34:06 AM »

It's Thimble time...she floats (which surprised me, to be honest)


Let's recap...
Les Jones's original design was for a Cyclone 15 motor, 8x 1.2v, 1.2 a/h nicads, a plain 35mm prop, standard sized rudder servo and another one with two micro switches for half power/full power.

Mine now carries the original Cyclone 15 motor, 8X 1.2v, 2500 a/h NiMhs, same prop, an MMB micro servo for the rudder and an esc set up to give 100% power on going ahead and 25% astern.

Thimble has just got her undersides wet for what could well be the first time in a lot of years, and she floats just above the designed waterline, which is a bonus...I was nervous of putting her in the bath, because she did feel rather heavy.

Next is the maiden voyage on the 'proper' lake, Princes Park in Eastbourne.

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Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #18 on: February 17, 2012, 12:31:53 PM »

As an afterthought to this, I wired up the battery packs, hooked everything up, switched on and put the boat back in the bath.

Two clicks of throttle...forward motion. Good...half throttle, and Thimble is starting to climb up the end of the bath. Ok so far... so onto full throttle (with me hanging onto the stern) ....best part of a bath full of water rapidly transfers itself up the walls, over the window and the windowsill, on the floor, and over me.

I guess we can say it works....





Rich (and wet....)
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cuppa

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #19 on: February 17, 2012, 01:33:59 PM »

As an afterthought to this, I wired up the battery packs, hooked everything up, switched on and put the boat back in the bath.

Two clicks of throttle...forward motion. Good...half throttle, and Thimble is starting to climb up the end of the bath. Ok so far... so onto full throttle (with me hanging onto the stern) ....best part of a bath full of water rapidly transfers itself up the walls, over the window and the windowsill, on the floor, and over me.

I guess we can say it works....
Rich (and wet....)

My grandson did a similar thing with the piranha in the kitchen sink. It is amazing how far a model boat can blow water out of a sink or bath tub! My wife suffered a complete sense of humour failure when she saw the resultant flooding..............
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tr7v8

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #20 on: February 17, 2012, 01:52:44 PM »

That looks great fun, not sure if our waters would be suitable for something that small.
I've always liked the Vic Smeed Mocassion design & will build it one day.
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Jim

Patrick Henry

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #21 on: February 17, 2012, 02:22:36 PM »

I remember Les Jones, John Cundell and Paul Bridgewater racing these things at Mote Park in Maidstone way back when....three feet out from the edge and you'd lost sight of them!

Our small lake would be ideal for Thimble type boats, but the council (who own the lake) frown upon such things. I was asked politely (or told in no uncertain terms) not to run George (my Robbe Sea Jet) any longer, they even keep an eye on guys with fast patrol boats and the like.

I'm looking forward to giving Thimble a run, I did build her larger sister Squadge (another Les Jones design) that was quite good fun to run.


Rich
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John East

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #22 on: March 02, 2012, 08:57:02 PM »

Hiya..I to have two of these, and one of them is the one in the first picture on here ! The actual boat. I was a member of cygnets way back. I also have a moulded one. will dig them out, one still has all the original fitting in it.
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victor

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #23 on: August 11, 2013, 08:58:06 AM »

Sorry to dig up an old thread but in sorting out my loft I came across a Nick Rees " The Bug " plan which I thought I would build using up to date internals and as the boat is mentioned above I thought this would be a good place to ask a favour.
 
The plan is fairly straight forward but there are one or two areas that aren't clear, could anyone help out with building notes or a mgazine article?
 
Thanks.
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kiwiazz74

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Re: Thimble...
« Reply #24 on: November 28, 2018, 09:02:12 AM »

G'day guys I too am interested in building a thimble.
If anyone with plans and article  would be able to scan it and email to me i would be greatful and happy to pay for their time.
I did find the plan online at sarik i think but with $1nz = 50p plus post it makes the drawing a bit too expencive for me on a  pension.


cheers from NZ
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