V-12A Kit Build

I’m new to sailboat building. I started a few nights ago on Victor Model Products V-12 A.

I’m now to the point where I’m placing the radio equipment and got to thinking about how my transmitter sticks return to center. I’m wondering if it would be better to remove the stick centering mechnism, so that where I set the stick, it stays. Then if you couold also add the detent mechanism supplied with some transmitters, to count the clicks. A good learning tool? :rolleyes:

This is standard practice when using R/C for Live Steam locomotives. I’m wondering what the experienced skippers/builders here do?


You want to keep the centering mechanism on the rudder control, since you always want it centered unless you are turning.

But you want to remove the centering mechanism on the sail control, and add a ratchet mechanism that allows it to stay where it is. The ratchet may be part of the transmitter kit, or you may have to order it separately.

The radio transmitter will probably have instructions for this.

You remove the spring(s) and the plastic yoke to defeat the centering mechanism. then you need a small metal strip with a tooth on the end to screw onto the control. You’ll need to order some (Tower Hobbies has them, or maybe your LHS), unless you’re really good with tiny bits of flimsy metal.

Below is a quick drawing of the ratchet strip. It may give you an idea of the part used for ratcheting the ‘throttle’ stick.


Thanks Tomohawk, luckily a rachet came with the transmitter. I just have to install it.


I need some help with identifying a source for obtaining Dacron line to finish my V-12.

Does anyone know what weight dacron line I should get?


For Foooties, you can use almost anything anywhere. Use BRAIDED line. 15lb. should be just fine. Something you can tie into knots easily.

The fishing line you can usually get at a tackle/fishing store.

For line and other parts, check this out.


I like the Dyneema (Spectra), White 0.4 mm 30 kg BS 20 meters. (Use Bowsies item #199). That is about 66 pounds which is plenty.

I think that smaller is better.

for line, go to any fishing equipment store, and get some fly line backing. 30 lb is good. It is very limp and ties easily, and not too small to see. You can buy 100 yd for about $10, but if you ask nicely, they wil give you a few yards for free.

Thanks everyone for the help…it’s much appreciated.

Frank…I took your link to Midwest Model Yachting and order the White, 0.4 mm Dyneema (Spectra).


Does anyone know if the ratchet strip is included (or otherwise available) for the Spektrum DX5e?

The DX5e is mainly intended for aircraft, and is 5 channels, so it comes with the ratchet on the vertical axis of the left stick already installed by the factory. If you buy the radio with the 5 channel reciever, that reciever seems to have the most reliable reception for model boats, and seems to be less susceptible to signal reflection problems caused by the waters surface. Good radio!


Thanks Bill! I bought a DX5e - 100% of the documentation pertains to use in model aviation. They should recognize the growing use by RC yachters and provide documentation for such 2 channel use.

Here’s some pictures of my fished V-12 A kit. A great first timer kit.

1st picture: Ready for test sail,
2nd picture: Sailing on the backyard pool,
3rd: picture: Some final finishing touches.

Regarding using the DX with a sailboat, there is a 1 or 2 page summary posted somewhere describing what channels to use for rudder & sail control.

Maybe someone can help find a link.

Found it


Now that I have a Footy, I’m trying to learn to sail, first some reading and then practice in the backyard pool.

I’ve seen mentioned here…the use of telltails.

  1. What do the other skippers here use as the telltail material?
  2. How many telltails are used? and
  3. where & how are they placed?

Thanks in advance,

For DX radios, the throttle channel will be your sail winch, and the aileron channel will be your rudder servo.

The linked article is for a DX6, which is programmable using switches. Your DX5e is less complex. Just connect your servos and set your trims.

Then have fun!


I’ve been experimenting with the balanced una rig (aka McRig) for my V-12A as described in a message thread by Brett McCormack back in 2007 and in a 2008 Model Yatching Magazine’s issue# 152, page 21.

This is the second and largest of the una rig’s I’ve made. It is 180+ sq. inches of sail. The sail material is 22" tall by 17" wide at the boom and made from florist cello.

A Z-shaped wire, made from .062" dia. s/s music wire, is the Rig’s pivot point and extends forward to accept the mast. The Z-wire provides a flexibility at the mast’s base. The 24" forestay(mast) is .125" dia. pultruded carbon fiber tube with a .074" inside dia. that slips over the Z-wire.

An 18" boom is .062" dia. carbon fiber rod is bound to the Z-shaped wire by tightly wrapping it with 50 lb. braided low stretch Dacron trolling line and then soaked with CA.

These sails are quick to make, this one taking about an hour.

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