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Thread: TFL 34" carbon fiber Cheetah Twin

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
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    IL
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    Default TFL 34" carbon fiber Cheetah Twin

    IMG_20191204_204204.jpg

    This boat was originally built and raced by Darin Jordan back in 2014. You can see that build thread here. It has now found it's way into my fleet after at least one other owner. Darin orignially built it to race on 4S and I'll likely leave it setup that way. I've been working on it over the past few weekends to make a few of my own tweaks and I'm just about done.

    I pulled the rudder and re-centered it on the transom to get a better steering geometry setup. I filled in the old holes with epoxy and drilled and tapped new holes in the aluminum transom reinforcement plate. I believe the original rudder was a shorter setback design and had different mounting holes. That rudder was quickly replaced in favor of this longer version to improve turning at speed. I also drilled out the pivot bushings and replaced them with a brass sleeve that had a much tighter tolerance.

    I think the rudder change is why the linkage was not as optimal as it could be. To fix that, I moved the servo to the bottom side of the electronics tray to eliminate interference with the canopy lip and shimmed the servo horn to get the linkage in the right location. I used a 3mm threaded stainless rod with ball joints at both ends to eliminate any slop in the steering response. The TFL rudder attachment arm was too far behind the pivot point for the orientation of the steering servo to maintain proper alignment. To fix this I made a small adapter from 2mm carbon plate and moved the pivot point forwards which fixed my geometry problem. Darin likes to hide the steering bellow inside the hull and I'm pretty sure his build are where I picked up that trick. I decided to trim out the small section of brass tube sticking out the rear of the hull with a short piece of carbon tube. Cleaned things up visually.

    IMG_20200131_154612.jpg IMG_20200131_155416.jpg IMG_20200131_154832.jpg
    Vac-U-Tug Jr (13mph)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    IL
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    I re-routed all of the wiring underneath the electronics tray to clean things up and replaced the cooling lines with black tubing. Cut some carbon veneer tops for the ESC heat sinks to knock down some of the blue color. I re did the heat shrink on the motor wire bullets to all black. I soldered on Castle 6.5mm battery connectors and epoxied the circuit boards on the external cap banks. I installed a neoprene hatch seal and a set of OSE thumbscrew hatch locks so I don't have to tape down the hatch. I filled the front half of the hull with a solid piece of black closed cell foam block cut to shape which also helps support the front deck.

    IMG_20200131_154548.jpg IMG_20200131_154905.jpg IMG_20200131_154918.jpg
    Vac-U-Tug Jr (13mph)

  3. #3
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    IL
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    Darin already reinforced the seams around the entire length of the hull and filled in the tops with epoxy and chopped fiber. The rear portion of the canopy was a little flimsy so I sanded down the underside and did a carbon inlay to stiffen it up.

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    Trimmed off the edges and it's all set. Should be ready for spring!

    IMG_20200201_185927.jpg
    Vac-U-Tug Jr (13mph)

  4. #4
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    Jul 2016
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    IL
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    Got the maiden voyage in on Wednesday. The boat ran like a champ on three sets of batteries. I'd estimate it was in the mid 50's on a set of 1715 props and 4S packs. I need to dial back some of the rudder travel because the boat will roll over at slow speeds. It's amazing how hard it will turn at full speed with just a small amount of steering input. It certainly doesn't need all of that travel. The hatch seal worked perfectly, not a drop of water inside despite being upside down twice while waiting for the tug. It was a good way to start off the 2020 global pandemic boating season.
    Vac-U-Tug Jr (13mph)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    la
    Posts
    39

    Default

    What you sealed the hatch with ? Just looking for ideas on mine I just finished up

  6. #6
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    IL
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyoshosp2 View Post
    What you sealed the hatch with ? Just looking for ideas on mine I just finished up
    Adhesive backed neoprene tape. You can get it in varying widths and thicknesses on ebay and Amazon.

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