Cincopelli Fünfling

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    In the late 1800’s there was a group of little known thinkers, tinkerers, innovators and inventors, Quint Cincopelli, Diane Hedralski and Cosmo Vennise. This vigilant band of visionaries was on a constant quest for innovations to make life easier when it was not as cushy as in more recent times with all of our modern conveniences.

    In 1904, after hearing of the Wright brothers successes, this group of dedicated pioneers began to cultivate an interest in aviation, and decided to build a flying machine of there own. In studying the Wright’s airplane they noticed a couple of shortcomings not obvious to the untrained eye, and gave much thought to improving on the Wright’s basic concept.

    But before they began to design their vision for the future, they decided that the results of their findings must be published, so they formed the organization they called the EAA (Experimental Airplane Association), figuring it would be easier to get published if they had a title. Unfortunately, they never got published, but the organization has managed to survive for all these years.

    The first thing they noticed was that the Wright’s airplane didn’t fly very far, so was really of little value. To be of some worth, their machine must travel tremendous distances since the next farm was over a mile away, and it was almost 4 miles into town. So, Quint surmised that the short distance flown might be attributed to the fact that the airplane had only two wings. So in their design, they figured more wings meant more distance. They settled on five.

    Diane noticed that the Wright’s airplane had droopy wings, and required a complicated series of cables, cradles, levers and pulleys, just to keep the machine level. So she thought that if they went the other way and angled the wings upward that it might stay level on its own, and turn left and right simply by moving the rudder from side to side. The upward angled wing concept was referred to by the group as Di-Hedral, later shortened simply to dihedral, a term every modern day aviator is familiar with.

    But far and away the greatest visionary in the group was Cosmo Vennise. He saw things in the design that no one else did. Once they had their machine built, he spent hours gazing thoughtfully upon those five wings. Then it came to him; if he could somehow lash a tall stack of slats together, and find a way to rotate them, they could be hung over the windows in the house and rotated closed at night making it impossible to look in, rendering it blind to the outside world. He developed his invention in just a few short weeks, and called it the Vennisian Blind. In the end, his invention was far more successful then their airplane was. After all, it’s hard to find a house that doesn’t have at least one set of Vennisian Blinds, but not everyone has a five winged airplane!

    And yes, their airplane did fly, though it turned poorly to the right. From that experience they learned that tail volume was vitally important, and they needed a way to determine the correct ratio of wing and tail. From that came their equation that resulted in the addition of two more rudders. The calculations go like this;

Before the mod; 2 Horizontal Stabilizers + 1 rudder = 3. Subtract 3 from 5 (wings) and you get 2.

After the mod; 2 Horizontal Stabilizers + 3 rudders = 5. Subtract 5 from 5 (wings) and you get 0.

    As you can see in the first design lacked the necessary tail volume by a factor of 2, which is why the airplane turned twice as good to the left as it did to the right. But with the addition of the two rudders, it was a wash, and the airplane turned just as good one way as the other. These Guys were good! And that’s why I selected their airplane for this unusual modeling project.


The Full Scale Cincopelli was a simple rudimentary airplane with lots of innovative features


    The model is an exact replica of the original airplane built all those years ago. It was first set up with the single rudder, and just like its full scale counterpart just didn’t want to turn right. But after the addition of the two outboard rudders, it flew just fine.

     Just like the full size Fünfling, the model flies very slowly, so it will be extremely sensitive to breezy conditions. A good way to test the weather for suitable flying conditions is to draw a 4 foot diameter circle on the ground with white chalk. Hold a feather as high as you can over the circle and let it go. If the feather lands inside the circle, conditions are just right. And, since the model is so slow and lightly loaded, it would also be a terrific candidate for indoor flying as well.


Wingspan- Top 3; 29”
Bottom 2; 28”
Wing area; 464 sq. in.

Length; 26 ½”
Flying weight; 6.1 oz.
Wing loading; 1.9 oz. / sq. ft.

Equipment used;

Power System; GWS IPS-A Drive with a 5 amp ESC w/ BEC, a GWS 9-7 prop and a 700 mah 2S Lipoly battery.

Control System; 2, Micro Servos with .025-inch dia. steel wire pushrods and a Spektrum AR6100 2.4 GHz Receiver