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MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS

MICRO BEAST

3D FRENZY!

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HIGH-PERFORMANCE HELI

APRIL 2011

The Original Since 1929 EXCLUSIVE: TOP FLITE P-40 | THE 4-STROKE ADVANTAGE | SCALE WEATHERING SECRETS | 30+ NEW PRODUCTS

RULE THE SKY! Exclusive!

Top Flite

P-40

+

30

PLANES, HELIS & MORE

BATTERY BASICS

APRIL 2011

ModelAirplaneNews.com

LiPo Charging Secrets

Brute Power! Get the 4-stroke advantage


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BEYOND

FOAM. BALSA. BELIEF.

The NEW Carbon-Z ™ Yak 54 Forget what you thought you knew about electric aircraft construction and performance. The new Carbon-Z Yak 54 is a giant leap in both that takes Bind-N-Fly ® aircraft capabilities to a whole new level. Knife edge loops, hovering torque rolls at half throttle, ballistic uplines – no longer is this kind of performance the privilege of a select few with the time and money to build large-scale 3D airplanes. The Bind-N-Fly Carbon-Z Yak 54 lets you experience the same precision and unlimited performance in the time it takes to charge a battery, for a fraction of the price. It’s all made possible by Carbon-Z construction. Developed by world aerobatic champion Quique Somenzini, Carbon-Z uses a patent-pending technique to fuse the lightweight durability of a molded Z-Foam™ structure with the strength and rigidity of carbon fiber. The result is an airframe that is as strong as or stronger than balsa with an exterior that looks great in all temperatures and weather. This advanced airframe, combined with the custom brushless power system Quique developed for it, gives the Carbon-Z Yak 54 a stunning thrust-to-weight ratio of 2:1 and 3D performance that knows no limits. Get to E-fliteRC.com/Carbon-Z right now for a closer look at this groundbreaking development in electric flight and to find an E-flite retailer near you.

© 2010 Horizon Hobby, Inc. E-flite, Carbon-Z, Z-Foam and Bind-N-Fly are trademarks or registered trademarks of Horizon Hobby, Inc. Patents pending. www.E-fliteRC.com 27303

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Plywood

Carbon Fiber Z-Foam

SPECIFICATIONS BNF EFL10080 PNP EFL10075 Wingspan 48.0 in (1220mm) Length 48.5 in (1230mm) Wing Area 525 sq in (34.0 sq dm) Weight with 2800mAh 4S Battery 3.75 lb (1.7 kg) Radio 4+ Channel with adjustable Dual Rates and Expo Recommended


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Endless possibilities. RealFlight G5.5 isn’t just an essential flight training tool. It’s the R/C flight sim with the most advanced flight physics for mastering your skills. RealFlight takes the risk out of learning how to fly, allowing you to adjust heli parameters to match your actual machine. You can even add changing weather conditions and turbulence levels. Apply tail rotor failures, and you can practice what to do in a real emergency. Other flight sims aren’t as realistic as RealFlight G5.5, but that’s why they aren’t called RealFlight.

®

2010 INNOVATION OF THE YEAR

®

The most realistic recreation of R/C flight ever!

© 2011 Hobbico®, Inc – 3072773 – Distributed Exclusively Through: GREAT PLANES MODEL DISTRIBUTORS COMPANY®, P.O. Box 9021; Champaign, IL 61826-9021

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realflight.com/101n


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CONTENTS FEATURES 36 4-STROKES

Is this powerhouse engine right for you?

April 2011 Volume 139, No. 4

44

BY JOHN REID

56 THUNDER POWER TP-610C CHARGER

A battery management system that does it all BY DICK PETTIT

78 HOW TO: DETAILING AND WEATHERING

Adding realism with paint chips and wear BY LYLE VASSER

102 FLIGHT TECHNIQUE: THE AVALANCHE

4 simple steps to this impressive move BY JOHN GLEZELLIS

EPILOG ZING 24 LASER CUTTER

Follow along as Gerry Yarrish laser cuts from CAD plans to create model parts, scale markings and fiberglass control horns! SEE IT AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

Special RCX Preview! 74 THE GREATEST RC SHOW ON EARTH COMES TO CALIFORNIA

COLUMNS 52 LET’S TALK GIANT SCALE Maximizing your aircraft’s safety and reliability BY JOHN GLEZELLIS

62 ULTIMATE ELECTRICS

Charging LiPo batteries safely BY JOHN REID

114 FINAL APPROACH Look, Ma! No radio

FLIGHT TESTS Exclusive! 28 TOP FLITE P-40 GIANT SCALE ARF

This classic Warhawk can fly with or without retracts BY AARON HAM

44 PRECISION AEROBATICS EXTRA 260

68 CONSTRUCTION 92 FUN SCALE MONOCOUPE 70

An early classic with park flyer performance BY RICHARD DERY

A top performer with big plane “feel” BY AARON HAM

68 E-FLITE UMX MICRO BEAST BNF

This little aerobatic biplane is a fistful of excitement BY GERRY YARRISH

84 JS MODELS 3D FRENZY HELI

A .50-size machine with optional flybarless control system BY PAUL TRADELIUS

6 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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BY GERRY YARRISH

DEPARTMENTS 8 12 14 18 20 104 108 112

On the Web Preflight Airwaves Tips & Tricks Flightline AirAgeStore.com Product Watch Index of Advertisers

On the cover: The giant-scale Top Flite P-40 Warhawk is an amazing warbird ARF. You can build it with or without retracts. See page 28 for details. (Photo by Hope McCall)

56


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ON THE

WEB

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ModelAirplaneNews.com ONLINE REVIEW: EPILOG ZING 24 LASER CUTTER Anyone who’s ever dreamed of creating his own kits and parts will want to know more about this unique tool. Using his laptop, senior editor Gerry Yarrish was able to laser-cut parts from CAD plans and even create decals, scale markings, fiberglass control horns, and more! Read his full review online at ModelAirplaneNews.com/ epilogzing.

ONLINE FLIGHT VIDEOS An all-out 3D aerobat like the Precision Aerobatics Extra 260 reviewed in this issue, really needs to be seen to be believed, so be sure to set your flight path to ModelAirplaneNews.com to see in-flight videos of this showstopper and the other planes and helicopter we review this month.

ONLINE MEMBERS ONLY EXCLUSIVES!

FLIGHT REPORT: BH MODELS CORSAIR

Reviewer Mark Phillips writes that this 69-inch-span fighter is “an absolute pleasure to assemble” and that total building time was less than 15 hours. It’s designed for a 1.20 4-stroke or electric power, and he opted for a brushless Himax outrunner with a Castle Creations HV 110 speed control. Get all the details and full flight performance in the exclusive online review.

CLASSIC MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS

MUST-SEE RC! With hot new products, wild video clips and more, The Radio Control Show is a great way to get your RC fix. Hosts Hope McCall and Kevin Hetmanski bring you a new episode every Friday! • Industry news & interviews • New products • Event coverage

In our January 1991 issue, scale craftsman Frank Tiano shared his secrets to a perfect finish in “Fiberglassing Sheeted Wings.” From choosing the right tools and materials, to Frank’s own tips and techniques, any scale modeler who’s trying to create a scale masterpiece shouldn’t miss this classic article.

• Monthly sweeps! • Videos • Tech tips

THIS MONTH’S PRIZE IS A

THUNDER POWER TP-610C BATTERY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM Tune in to The Radio Control Show for your chance to win big. All you have to do is watch the current episode and get the special code you need to enter the sweepstakes. Simply fill out the form online, and enter the code broadcast in our latest episode before January 28, 2011, and you could be a winner! Go to ModelAirplaneNews. com/rcshowsweeps to view the show and get the code.

8 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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PACIFIC FIGHTERS

This Flight Journal special issue brings together outstanding combat tales and spellbinding photography. If you love Corsairs, Wildcats, Hellcats and Lightnings, you won’t want to miss this for one. The print edition is available at newsstands and the AirAgeStore.com, but the fullcolor digital version is available online to members.


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POWE RMAST E R FU E L S R I S E S A G A I N . T he m os t truste d n a m e i n h o b b y fu e l t e c hnology is ba ck , a nd bet t er t ha n ever. Bet t er beca use Power M as ter ® P re m i u m M o d e l E n g i n e Fu el is now per for ma nce engineered by VP ® Ra cing F uels, t he Wor l d L ea d e r i n R a c e F u e l Te c h n ol og y TM . Wor ld- cla s s fuel developed in a wor ld- cla s s f a cility wi t h no thi ng l e s s th a n th e p u re st i n g redient s a va ila ble. Wha t you get a re longer r untimes, a c l ea ner b u rn a n d b e s t o f a ll , more power. Be s ure t o vis it your loca l hobby s ho p a nd a s k fo r P o w e rM a s te r ® , a n d p re p a re t o unlea s h your vengea nce on t he compet it ion.

RACE TO WIN tm Texas Allied Chemicals, Inc. • P.O. Box 33911 • San Antonio, TX 78265 • 210.635.7755 • www.powermasterfuels.com


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PREFLIGHT Est. 1929

Mark your Calendars! We’re gearing up for the ninth annual RCX and Model Airplane News Expos at the Pomona, CA, fairgrounds the weekend of March 19 and 20, 2011, and this year’s show promises to be the biggest and best yet! Bring your current AMA card and get in free (which leaves you with more cash to buy the latest planes, helicopters and gear that’s on sale). The Model Airplane News Expo is held in its own hall and features an indoor flying zone and top vendor, plane and heli manufacturer booths. Pro So Cal pilots will also be showing off their skills outside, alongside the outdoor boat pond, RC car racing tracks and much more. When you’ve had your fill of aircraft, head on over to the RCX hall to check out the surface side (I guarantee you’ll be impressed by the huge air the trucks and truggies get on the giant dirt track jumps!). See how well your piloting skills translate to RC cars on the micro race track, drift track and Try Me Mountain (for RC crawler vehicles). Check out the preview in this issue, and I hope we’ll see you in Pomona this March. Whether you arrive by plane, train or automobile, it’s an RC experience you don’t want to miss!

IN THIS ISSUE Thanks in large part to your feedback, we’ve packed this issue with articles you’ve been asking for. Gearheads will appreciate our feature on 4-stroke engines and the information you need to know to keep them running right, and our how-to on scale detailing will help you to make your warbird stand out on the flightline. Whether you fly with glow or electric power, you’ll want to read about battery care and feeding as well as our review of Thunder Power’s latest charger, the TP-610C. In addition to our exclusive review on the Top Flite P-40, we test-fly the Precision Aerobatics Extra, an all-out 3D aerobat, the JS Models Frenzy, a flybarless heli and, last, but not least, we have an exclusive review on E-flite’s Micro Beast, a mini version of the monster biplane that holds its own in terms of performance. I hope you’ll continue to share your thoughts and comments by emailing us at man@airage.com, and we’ll continue to bring you an informative, interesting and useful read.

EDITORIAL Executive Editor Debra Cleghorn ›› debrac@airage.com Senior Technical Editor Gerry Yarrish ›› gerryy@airage.com West Coast Senior Editor John Reid ›› johnr@airage.com Copyeditor/Editorial Coordinator Katherine Pierpont

CONTRIBUTORS Bob Aberle, Gary Allen, Jason Benson, Larry Cooper, Budd Davisson, Roy Day, Don Edberg, Mike Gantt, Dave Garwood, Dave Gierke, Greg Gimlick, John Glezellis, Henry Haffke, Aaron Ham, Sal Iasilli, Clarence Lee, Brian Lewis, Jim Newman, Mark Phillips, Mark Rittinger, Jim Ryan, David Scott, Jerry Smith, Quique Somenzini, Faye Stilley, Michael Stroup, John Tanzer, Richard Thompson, Craig Trachten, Paul Tradelius, Pat Tritle, Rich Uravitch, David Vaught, Nick Ziroli Sr.

MEDIA SERVICES Vice President Media Services & Corporate Strategy Laurene R. Booth Creative Director Betty K. Nero Associate Art Director Kevin Monahan Staff Photographer Hope McCall Video Producer Joseph Arthur Web Producer Holly Hansen Traffic Coordinator Tracey Terenzi

ADVERTISING Advertising Director Mitch Brian Senior Account Executive Ben Halladay Account Executives Brian Vargas, Jason Sams Account Executive, Canada Dean Eusepi Sales Coordinator Yvonne Rodney

CONSUMER MARKETING Circulation Director Richard Rukaniec Newsstand Director David Goodman Marketing Manager Barbara Begley Marketing Assistant Emil Micik

PUBLISHING Group Publishers Louis V. DeFrancesco Jr., Yvonne M. DeFrancesco

ASK FOR MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS AT YOUR LOCAL HOBBY SHOP! HOBBY SHOP DISTRIBUTION BY: Kalmbach Publishing Co. (800) 558-1544 ext. 818 NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION BY: Kable Distribution Services, 14 Wall Street, 4C, New York, NY 10005, (212) 705-4621

New Spiral Guide! Radio Programming Essentials

From the editors of Model Airplane News, this handy guide is perfect for anyone who wants to get the most from his or her computer radio system. With all of the basics for understanding how to use your transmitter’s program menus, we show you everything you need to know to dial in your aircraft’s flight performance. This 30-page reference guide is printed on heavy-coated paper so it will hold up well at the flying field and it’s spiral bound so it lays flat with its pages open while you’re adjusting your transmitter.

HOW TO REACH US EDITORIAL MAIL 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA Phone (203) 431-9000; fax (203) 529-3010

FEATURING: ■ Basic model control setup for sport aircraft ■ Menu and function breakdowns ■ Dual rates & sub-trims for easier flying Radio Programming Essentials is available at the AirAgeStore.com

SUBSCRIPTION CUSTOMER SERVICE (800) 827-0323, +(386) 246-3323 (outside the U.S.) or ModelAirplaneNews.com/cs

rcx.com

Magazine Publishers of America

Printed in the USA

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AIRWAVES

I had been suffering the wrath of vibration and several of the holes for my cowl’s attachment screws were bigger than the heads of the screws

Email: man@airage.com Mail: Airwaves, Air Age Media, 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA

FIXING FIBERGLASS

U Just wanted to drop you guys a note to

say thanks for your timely Repair Tech article. Gerry Yarrish’s fiberglass engine cowl fix did the trick for me. I had been suffering the wrath of vibration and several of the holes for my cowl’s attachment screws were bigger than the heads of the screws. I just kept adding bigger and bigger washers to cover up the holes. Is it ok to use microballoons instead of shredded glass cloth for thickener? Thanks! —Walter Williams, email Walter, thanks for reading. The how-to articles are my favorites—especially when

WRITE TO US! We welcome your comments and suggestions. Address letters to “Airwaves,” Model Airplane News, Air Age Media, 88 Danbury Rd., Wilton, CT 06897-7337 USA; email man@airage.com. Letters may be edited for clarity and brevity. We regret that, owing to the tremendous numbers of letters we receive, we cannot respond to every one.

14 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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they’re helping our readers save some coin! Using shards of fiberglass cloth goes way back to my Air Force days when I was repairing radomes and other bonded and laminated fiberglass panels. Basically, the chopped-up glass strengthens the cured resin and helps it resist further cracking. If you are talking about microballoons in this context, no, microballoons does not strengthen the resin. When filling in for missing pieces, nothing works better than the milled-up glass fibers. If you want to smooth out the repair area before priming and painting, microballoons will make the resin sand easier while smoothing it out with fine sandpaper. Also, if you are having


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a continuing vibration problem that chews up your cowling, be sure to check your propeller for proper balance. Less vibes means less cracking—hope this helps! —GY

ProPer SPin techniqueS

U The article by Dave Scott about upright spins was very informative and I also found it really helpful. In the past, I was taught to only use full rudder and elevator and to leave the ailerons alone. Dave’s illustrated step-by-step instructions and his timing hint for proper recovery has improved my spins immensely. Thanks and please keep the flight techniques coming. I’m not able to find this type of flight instruction anywhere else and it is one of many reasons I keep coming back to Model Airplane News! —Michael Rodríguez, Phoenix, AZ Michael, thanks for your words of praise, we’ll pass your thanks on to Dave next time we have a planning session. Holding only rudder and elevator deflection and not aileron sounds more like proper technique for doing snap rolls. Holding the aileron hard over in the direction of the spin helps keep that side of the wing stalled and tightens up the spin. Of course, to do a really good spin, you do have to make sure to fully stall the wing before breaking to the left or right. If the stall is not complete, then your model enters a lazy descending spiral with the center of rotation (spin axis) somewhere other than within the model’s centerline. Hope this helps, and yes, we have a lot more flight tech articles coming so please stay tuned! —GY

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Henry Haffke

in Search of Mr. Gee Bee

U I am a model builder for the Frontiers

of Flight Museum in Dallas, TX. We are currently building a 25-percent Gee Bee R1 Racer for a display and have been trying to get some details of the instrument panel for this aircraft. So far, we’ve searched our library as well as the Internet and have contacted other museums without success. I’ve heard that Henry Haffke may have a photo or drawing of a Gee Bee R1 instrument panel. Would you be able to please provide his contact information? —Gary Seidel, email

Gary, we’ve called Henry and he said he’d love to hear from you or any other Model Airplane News reader interested in obtaining Gee Bee information of any sort. We’ve forwarded your letter to Henry and he did say that he has instrument panel information including which specific instrument dials were in what panel openings. Good luck! —GY

APRIL 2011 15


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TIPS&TRICKS Useful hints from modelers More Online! ModelAirplaneNews.com

FOAM WING CLAMP When I have to repair foam wings, I find it hard to hold the wing together and apply the glue at the same time. I made clamps out of clothespins and Popsicle sticks (you could also use tongue depressors). You’ll need to make two so they can hold the front and back of the wing. Some clear plastic wrap on the clamps will prevent them from sticking to the CA or you can tack down the center and then remove the clamps and finish up on the edges. Bob Ferrara, Islip, NY

YOU BREAK IT, I BUY IT I buy many used engines and noticed that many have broken motor mounts, intakes and carburetors as a result of a crash. This could be alleviated by using aluminum or nylon mounting bolts. You could also file in some breakaway notches in the steel mounting bolts. One source for the aluminum, nylon or steep bolts is Micro Fasteners (microfasteners.com). Richard Burton, Rangely, CO

Oftentimes, old glow plugs will get plugged up with castor oil and stop working. They’re hard to clean because you can’t stick anything inside them because of the coil. I built a small cleaner board with holes that are threaded the same as the glow plugs. This plate is put into an old pickle jar and filled with Vassal, just past the top glow plug. Let them soak and swish it around every once and a while just to knock out the old burnt castor oil that’s coated on the plug. It works great—some of my glow plugs are 20 years old and still work just fine! Gary Clarke, Malton Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

MAKING THE CONNECTION On many electrics, I hate plugging in the battery and having a live motor near my hand as I seal up the battery compartment. To keep the power from the connection, I solder in a female Deans connector between the power wires going from the speed control to the battery. This is glued to the side of the fuselage with epoxy or CA. My key is a male Deans connector with a copper wire soldered between the Deans terminals. Now the power can be applied right before I am ready to fly. William Watt, Chatham, NJ

SEND IN YOUR IDEAS! We’ll award a Model Airplane News baseball cap for every idea used in “Tips & Tricks.” Send a rough sketch and a brief description to Model Airplane News, c/o Air Age Media, 88 Danbury Rd., Wilton, CT 06897 USA. Be sure that your name and address are clearly printed on each submission. Because of the number of ideas we receive, we can neither acknowledge each one nor return unused material.

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ILLUSTRATIONS BY RICHARD THOMPSON

RENEW OLD GLOW PLUGS


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Flightline

YOur #1 sOurce fOr rc News

More Online! ModelAirplaneNews.com

A MAIN HOBBIES PROtEk R/C SUPER PRO 20

This regulated 20-amp, DC power supply has it all, including a USB charging port and three power-supply outputs. It weighs less than three pounds and has an internal cooling system as well as current limiting and shortcircuit protection. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s also ideal for any item that requires a 10-amp, 12-volt power source. It comes with universal output 4mm banana jacks that can also be used with clamp-type connectors and costs $84.99. amainhobbies.com

EvOlUTION .60NX CONtROL-LINE ENGINE

USRA PYLON RACING NEWS

The Unlimited Scale Racing Association (USRA) enjoyed a great year of racing and saw the return of a three-venue schedule in 2010 and already has three dates set for 2011. Newly crowned champions Jeff Powell (Unlimited) Randy Ritch (F1 Pro) and Mike Tallman (F1-GT) enjoyed great year-end prizes thanks to series sponsors Horizon Hobby, Desert Aircraft, Airtronics and Jack Thomas. Are you ready to fly low, go fast and turn left? The 2011 season will start June 9-12 in Hearne, TX, then will move to El Dorado, KS, August 18-21 and finish October 20-23 on the West Coast (location to be determined). For more information, photos and rules, go to the USRA website at usrainfo.org.

Designed for control-line precision aerobatics, the .60NX Cl has .60-size displacement in a .46-52-size case! It has a single sprinkler venturi system for easy, out-of-the-box operation, multiple muffler options and a front case-mounted friction-lock needle valve. It costs $149.99. evolutionengines.com

PHOENIX MODEl JUPItER .46

Ready for precision aerobatics after just a few hours of final assembly, this ARF is made with light, laser-cut wood and covered with Oracover. It comes with a durable, painted fiberglass cowl and wheel pants, two-piece wing and painted and installed pilot figure and costs $159.99. greatplanes.com 20 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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GREAT PlANES JU-87 StUkA & CURtISS P-6E

Now you have a second chance to buy and fly these extraordinary warbirds during their limited re-release. Both feature interlocking, all-wood airframes, painted fiberglass parts matched to factory-applied covering and Great Planes hardware. The .60-1.20 Curtiss P-6E has a top wingspan of 76 inches, and the .60 to .90 Ju-87 Stuka has a 70-inch wingspan; they cost $479.99 and $329.99, respectively. greatplanes.com


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FLIGHTLINE

GREAT PLANES SPORT SCALE MUSTANG

EAGLE TREE SYSTEMS ELOGGER V4

This latest version is packed with new logging features while retaining all the great features of the renowned eLogger V3. It has high-speed logging and up to 50Hz, sixteen times the logging capacity of the V3, improved on-board voltage regulator so it can be used with more accessories, a USB mini connector and more! It starts at $69.99. eagletreesystems.com

If you’re looking for straightforward assembly that doesn’t require a lot of time or money, this is the ticket! It flies just as well with a .46 glow engine as it does with a brushless outrunner motor and features a twopiece, balsa-sheeted foam-core wing. This 56-inch-span warbird costs $179.99. greatplanes.com

THUNDER POWER RC G4 PRO LITE 25C SERIES ULTRA MICRO LIPOS

Get more flight time from your micro aircraft with these all-new 125mAh and 160mAh series LiPo batteries. They deliver more capacity and power at the lowest possible weight, up to five times more cycle life and 5C charge rate capability. Plus, they can be matched with the all-new TP103CQ Quad Port pocket-size charger for hours of nonstop flying fun. thunderpowerrc.com

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HITEC HTS-VOICE

When you fly with Hitec’s Optima 7 or Optima 9 receivers, this system announces your model’s data via a built-in speaker or optional earphones. Compatible with any radio fitted with the Hitec AFHSS system, the HTS-Voice operates on two AAA batteries and includes a volume adjust, convenient selectable information readout, a 3.5mm earphone port and a power LED indicator. It costs $65.99. hitecrcd.com


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STEVENS AEROMODEL FLOAT KIT ELECTRIFLY YAK-55M

This E-Performance Series ARF features built-up wood construction, MonoKote covering and a two-piece wing. Small enough to be equipped with easily available electronics and economical LiPo batteries, the Yak-55M will fit in most cars while assembled yet can fly in winds that would affect a smaller aircraft. It costs $169.99. electrifly.com

HITEC HTS-NAVI

Take telemetry to the next level of convenience and functionality! This USB telemetry receiver lets you wirelessly download and display essential telemetry information on your PC. Compatible with any radio fitted with Hitecâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s AFHSS system, the HTS-Navi will display everything you need to know about your model, including battery voltage, fuel level, temperature, rpm, GPS, current and voltage. It costs $65.99. hitecrcd.com

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This retro float set is specifically designed for the Stevens SkyBuggy 300 and includes laser-cut parts, bent struts, mounting hardware and a photo-illustrated manual. It costs $29.99 and can be assembled by beginning modelers. stevesaero.com

CARL GOLDBERG CLASSICS EP FALCON

Introduced in 1962, this iconic aircraft initiated thousands of RC pilots, taking them from first flight to basic aerobatics. Now reengineered by Great Planes, the Falcon has returned to teach another generation how to fly. Strong, lightweight Pro-Formance foam construction and a brushless electric motor make the Falcon EP equally at home indoors as well as outdoors on a calm day. The 37-inch-span model costs $69.99. carlgoldbergproducts.com


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Flightline

E-flitE AdvAnce 25e

the tricycle landing gear and semisymmetrical airfoil of the Advance 25e ARf make it ideal for newer pilots transitioning from high-wing trainers, but experienced pilots will like it too. Not only is it an exceptionally affordable 25-size sport plane, but its firewall is also drilled to accept both E-flite Power 25 and Power 32 brushless motors. it costs $99.99. e-fliterc.com

futABA S.buS ServoS

Designed for cable-free communication with futaba’s s.Bus system, these digital servos can be programmed to respond exactly as you need, so they’re ideal for largescale aircraft. they have dual bearings, metal gears and a metal center case. they start at $124.99. futaba-rc.com

VP RAciNg fuEls SeF 94 Premixed GAS sEf 94 is formulated specifically for the optimum performance and long-term durability of small 2-stroke engines. VP starts with a premium, high-performance unleaded ethanol-free race blend, and then premixes only the highest-quality synthetic oil in 50:1 and 40:1 ratios, along with a 4-cycle unleaded fuel ready for your choice of lubricant. it’s available in quart and 5-gallon containers. SEF94.com

AeroFly eASyFly4 uthERE ruby

turn your plane into a uAV! this small robotic device provides cruise control, training wheels, a panic button and autonomous landing for $345! it makes Rc more accessible to beginners and improves performance and reduces stress and fatigue for expert pilots by providing the key capabilities of an unmanned aerial vehicle in a small, affordable, and easy-to-use package. uthere.com 24 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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Based on Aerofly’s Professional Deluxe flight simulator, easyfly4 features 14 unique airfields, 106 detailed models and easy plug-andplay installation. Perfect for beginners to experts, it has trainers, 3D aerobats, helicopters, gliders and jets. the starter edition is available for $34.95 and up, depending on included accessories. And owners of Aerofly5 will be happy to hear that the update to the 5.5 version, with over 30 new models—including 10 helicopters and flybarless simulation!—is now available for free download. ikarus-usa.com; ikarus.net


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Hold charger history in the palm of your hand Super Brain 992 Palm Charger

Advanced technology, palm-size convenience MRC’s lightweight, palm-size AC/DC charger handles 1-4 cell LiPo/Li-Ion, LiFe,1-10 cell NiMh and NiCd, 12V Lead Acid/Gel Cell.

Pro Features, Remarkable Pricing.

• • Until now, AC/DC chargers with built-in LiPo balancing, • computer interface capability and the versatility to • charge multiple battery types cost big bucks. MRC’s • Palm Charger smashes the price barrier and does it in • an incredibly small size. •

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Displays individual cell voltage for “Li” batteries AC power supply included Large easy-to-read backlit LCD Computer interface capability Accutec™ balancing Charge rate up to 5 amps Very easy to use


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Flightline

tMe XtreMa balancer with coMPuter Data cable

tejera Microsystems engineering (tMe) has combined its very popular and versatile Lithium balancer with a UsB computer data cable for the bundled price of only $45.99 through dealers nationwide. the data cable allows you to control the balancer with your PC so you can monitor individual cell voltage, make graphs, run tests and customize your balancer for custom minimum and maximum voltages. tmenet.com

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HoBBy-LoBBy PiPer J-5 cub trainer

this 43.75-inch-span trainer can transition to an intermediate aircraft as your skills increase! a 2.4GHz radio system and brushless motor come installed, and the planeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s tough ePo foam construction means that it can withstand those less-than-gentle landings. LeD navigation lights and shock-absorbing scale landing gear complete the scale package. It costs $119. hobby-lobby.com

BeastX Microbeast

Now your 200-700-size, collectivepitch helicopter can use flybarless technology! the Microbeast is a lightweight and compact three-axis gyro system for RC helicopters. With a more simple head design of fewer mechanical parts to break, flybarless technology results in more power in flight, as well as absolute stability and agility. horizonhobby.com


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Hobby-Lobby Police Helicam

Create your own aerial movies with this unique helicopter! Helicam comes ready to fly out of the box, with a FlyCamone ECo on-board video camera installed. you control the camera with your transmitter to take still or video action! It costs $169. hobby-lobby.com

HITEC oPTima 6 liTe

built with a thin Lexan case and weighing in at less than 10 grams, this full-range, 6-channel receiver is perfect for small aircraft. The optima 6 Lite uses Hitecâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 2.4GHz AFHSS technology, exclusive single boosted omni-Directional Antenna and selectable Scan Mode to ensure an interferencefree, full-range connection for just $54.99. hitecrcd.com

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DLE ENGINES 170cc Twin

This giant gasser offers plenty of power on demand at a very affordable price. It has an electronic ignition system and features CNC machining, a customized carburetor and double V-type reed valves. It also comes with twin mufflers, spark plugs, a throttle arm extension, mounting hardware and more. It costs $1049.99. dleengines.com


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FLIGHTTEST

Top Flite

P-40 GIANT SCALE ARF

This classic Warhawk can fly with or without retracts

The author Aaron Ham shows off his new giant-scale fighter.

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worldmags By AARon HAm PhoTogRaPhs By HoPe mccALL

Powered by an 1150-horsepower, Allison V-1710-39, liquid-cooled V-12 engine, the P-40 Warhawk was considered a descent air-to-air fighter at lower altitudes and proved to be a better ground attack aircraft than a high-altitude dogfighter. It was a rugged fighter with great dive capability, a good roll rate and had a tight turning radius. The P-40 Warhawk saw continued service in several allied air forces up till in 1958. Today, there are less than 20 Warhawks still flying—such a shame. One thing is for sure, there are going to be a lot of new 1⁄5-scale Top Flite P-40s flying in the coming year. The airframe and wings are fully built up and sheeted using the highest-grade balsa and ply and then professionally covered in flat-finish MonoKote. Out of the box, the wings are structurally reinforced with aluminum, the fuselage is reinforced with fiberglass, it

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has scale-looking split flaps complete with scale rib construction, an expertly painted cowl, a clear canopy with painted frame lines, a full detailed cockpit kit, a factorypainted 5 1⁄2-inch aluminum spinner and all the top-quality hardware you’ve come to expect from Top Flite. Although this is not a beginner’s airplane, it is a great step up for those looking to move up to their first giant-scale warbird.

SpecificationS Model: P-40 Warhawk giant-scale ARF Manufacturer: Top Flite (top-flite. com) Distributor: Great Planes (greatplanes.com) Type: giant-scale warbird Wing span: 86 in.

UniqUe featUres First and foremost, I think this is a gorgeous airplane. My initial reaction when I opened the box was “WOW!” The covering on the airplane is absolutely beautiful. The combination of tan and olive drab flat MonoKote could not have looked (or been applied) any better. If you’ve assembled a few ARFs, you know how nice it is to have some of the more tedious tasks already done for you. I was very pleased to see each of the control surfaces and their respective hinges were preglued at the factory with only the hinging of the rudder needing to be completed by the modeler. Use special care when first inspecting the model’s control surfaces. You may need to flex each surface back

Wing area: 1,262 sq. in. Weight: 22 lb. 8 oz. Wing loading: 41.09 oz./sq. ft. Length: 72 in. Radio req’d: 5 to 7 channels (ailerons, rudder, throttle, elevator, flaps) choke and retracts optional Price: $580

HigHligHtS Absolutely gorgeous fit and finish! ++ Awesome scale looks ++ Quick assembly time ++ Outstanding flight characteristics ++

More Online! modelairplanenews.com

With so much poWer on tap and comfortable control response, the p-40 can do anything the real Warbird Was capable of doing APRIL 2011 29


FLIGHTTEST

worldmags TOP FLITE P-40 GIANT SCALE ARF

In the Air One thing that you can’t control during a test flight is the majestic and very tall and the plane tracks like it’s on rails all the weather—but we did the best we could. Beautiful blue skies, a way around. Rolls are crisp and even 4-pointers are easy to do mild, easily dealt with 10 to 12mph wind and a clear runway. The with a touch of top rudder when needed. Inverted flight is also only thing that could have been improved was the temperature. fairly easy and requires just a bit of a push of down to maintain We flew the first flight on a chilly December morning, but the altitude. I did not spin or snap the P-40 the first time out, but it Top Flite P-40 took this in stride. It sort is a very honest flyer and really is well of reminded us of the P-40s that went behaved. GEAR USED to the Russians during WW II. Despite Glide and stall performance: the 19-degree temps, the mighty DLE55 Radio: Futaba 10C 2.4GHz Remember, this is a giant-scale fighter fired right up after a little choking. It transmitter, 10 Futaba 9402 servos, airplane and not a lightweight floater. quickly settled into a smooth idle and Futaba R6014HS 2.4 FASST Let the wing do the work and don’t fly I let the engine warm up for about five 14-channel receiver (futaba-rc.com) on the prop. Maintain your airspeed minutes before advancing the throttle Engine: DLE 55cc gas engine (dleand watch the attitude. When in a glide and taxiing onto the runway. The sod engines.com) with the power pulled back, you need to strip at the Central CT RC Club’s flying keep the nose down to stay within the field is one of the best in the state Muffler: J-Tec Pitts style (jtecrc.com) proper airspeed range. Pulling the nose and there’s plenty of room for highFuel: Premium gasoline mixed 30:1 up and holding the elevator full back, speed taxi tests before that first flight! with Lawnboy Ashless 2-stroke oil the model stalls cleanly and depending Everything went perfectly and there was on whether the wing is level or not, the more than enough power on tap for a Prop: XOAR 22X10 (xoarprops.com) break is usually straight ahead. With positive climbout. The first takeoff was flaps and gear extended, you must without flaps and in only a few seconds, maintain some power and keep the the P-40 was at traffic altitude and ready CONTROL THROWS nose down. This is typical of any highto be rung out! Elevator: ± ¾ in., 30% expo (low); ± performance plane of this size. 1 in., 30% expo (high) GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE PILOT DEBRIEFING Rudder: ± 1 in., 30% expo (low); ±1 Stability: With its ample wing area and 7 The best thing I can advise on is to be ⁄8 in., 30% expo (high) fairly long fuselage moments, the P-40 very consistent with your control and is overall a very undemanding airplane Ailerons: ± ¾ in., 30% expo (low); ±1 throttle inputs during landing. Make it to fly. It is very stable at both high speed in., 30% expo (high) a habit so you don’t have to “think” too and at low speed. Even with the gear Flaps: 1 ¼ in. (half); 2 ½ in. (full much in the landing pattern. Come in and flaps down on final, the Warhawk down) to the pattern and then throttle back feels very solid all the way to touchdown slightly and flip the gear switch. When Tracking: There’s plenty of rudder you have down and locked, apply the authority and both on the ground and in the air, the model first notch of flap and trim for a slight nose down descent. Make tracks easily and response is smooth and predictable. At no your turns to downwind and then on the base leg, feed in the time does the airplane feel like it’s out of line. This is especially rest of the flaps and adjust your throttle to control your descent nice coming in for landing. rate. Turn on final and keep wings level. Start pulling power after you have the field made and then try to touch down just as the Aerobatics: It is designed to be a giant-scale fighter, not a wing stops flying. Stay on the rudder until the plane comes to a lightly loaded 3D aerobat. Fly it like a Flying Tiger! Loops are complete stop—man, this is fun!

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and forth to break free of any glue that may have dried on the hingepin. I found a few of them to be stiff but easily broke free with a little effort. The aileron and flap servo hatches under the wing use mounting blocks to secure the servos. Be sure to test fit your servos if you plan to use larger, heavy-duty servo arms or different brand of servo than what the instructions show. I found the super-strength

The DLE 55cc gas engine is a perfect choice for the P-40.

With the wing removed, access to the radio, fuel tank and retract air system is easy.

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servo arms from Du-Bro (dubro.com) to be perfect for the ailerons and the flaps. The two elevator servos and the single rudder servo sit in a tray inside the fuselage. The installation of each control rod and pull-pull system for the tail is easily accomplished and well explained in the manual. Take extra care when test fitting the location of each servo and consider placement of the elevator servos slightly outside of what is pictured in the manual.

A very slight bend may be necessary for each of the elevator pushrods if you do. This allows a bit more room when using the Du-Bro heavy-duty dual servo arm for the rudder and tailwheel steering. I also chose to drill an additional hole closer to the center on each side of the servo arm for the tailwheel pull-pull clevises. This provided a little more clearance space between the two clevis-locking nuts for the rudder and tailwheel linkages.

Fixed or Retracted?

The new Top Flite Giant Scale P-40 gives you the choice of installing the included fixed landing gear or purchasing a set of Large Scale Robart 100-degree rotating retracts (LXZMU3) from Great Planes designed specifically for the P-40. I tried out both setups. Although I liked the less complicated setup and weight savings of the fixed gear, I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t overcome the desire to increase the Warhawkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s scale looks with a set of quality Robart Mfg. retracts. For both installations, I used a Moto-Tool to increase the opening of the fiberglass landing gear nacelles near the leading edge. This allowed the nacelle to sit flush with the wing when the gear were extended. No matter what option you choose, fixed or retracts, the P-40 will look and fly awesome.

APRIL 2011 31


worldmags TOP FLITE P-40 GIANT SCALE ARF

To pull the P-40 around the sky, I found the DLE 55, with a J-Tec Pitts-style muffler and a XOAR 22X10 prop to be a perfect match. To extend the J-Tec muffler’s outlet pipes outside of the engine cowl, I added 2-inch extensions. Newer versions will have 5-inch stacks and will work great without the modification. Installations for both the DLE 55 and the Fuji 43 engines are well detailed in the manual and can be completed in minimal time. Be sure to use the included plywood spacers if using the DLE 55. No airplane is complete without decals and Top Flite has included a generous assortment of high-quality markings for you to apply to your P-40. After applying the markings, I couldn’t have been happier with the final results. The airplane looks absolutely gorgeous both on the flightline and on the wing.

CONCLUSION If you’re considering moving up to giantscale warbirds or you just want another great sport plane to your fleet, the Top Flite P-40 Warhawk is a great choice. Top Flite has really done their homework with this one. Nearly every item during the assembly fit exactly as instructed with little to no hassle. Assembly is straightforward and can be easily completed in 15 to 20 hours. I highly recommend this warbird, and when you see it up close, I know you will too. 

PHOTOGRAPH BY JOHN DIBBS

FLIGHTTEST

The Flying Tiger

P

robably most recognized by its “shark teeth” nose art painted on its engine cowl, all 13,738 P-40s were built by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation in Buffalo, NY. To reduce development time and enable a rapid production entry, the P-40 design was developed from modifications made to the previous Curtiss P-36 aircraft. “Warhawk” was the name the U.S. Army Air Corps adopted for all its models, and it became the official name in the United States for all P-40s. The British Commonwealth and Soviet air forces called their P-40s the Tomahawk for their equivalents to the B- and and the C-models. The name Kittyhawk was used for equivalent models of the P-40D and all other later variants. P-40s first saw combat with the British Commonwealth squadrons of the Desert Air Force (DAF) in the Middle East and North African campaigns, during June 1941 and it served in nearly every theater during World War II. The P-40 was probably made most famous at the beginning of the WW II by Claire Chennault and his American Volunteer Group (AVG) the “Flying Tigers.” Officially known as the 1st American Volunteer Group, the Flying Tigers were actually a flying unit of the Republic of China Air Force fighting against the Japanese. If you notice the markings on the AVG aircraft, the shark teeth represented the “Flying Tigers,” but the 12-point sun roundel on the wings represented the “Chinese Air Force,” not the United States. Though the P-40 lacked a two-stage supercharger which made it inferior to Luftwaffe fighters at higher altitudes, in theaters where high altitude performance was less important, the P-40 proved an effective fighter. It also had the advantage of low cost which helped keep it in production as a ground-attack fighter long after it became obsolete as an air superiority aircraft.

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Original Screenshot

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OFR H Z  6 /(5

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4

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“Is there an advantage?”

This is always the question people ask when thinking about switching over to 4-stroke power. For these answers I referred to Dave Gierke’s Radio Controlled Airplane Engine Guide, which is filled with a wide array of great information on the 4-stroke engine. People who support 4-stroke engines will tell you that they are quieter than a 2-stroke engine and sound closer to the scale engine. Other claims are that they run cooler, are more fuel-efficient and can produce higher torque, which allows them to run larger propellers. The sound and rpm are why 4-stroke engines are very popular with scale builders. The downside is that they are heavier and less powerful than 2-stroke engines. Weight is always a factor when working with any kind of aircraft. 4-stroke engines also require more care and are more costly because they have many more parts. While all of these things have some truth to them, some can be overstated and there may not be that much different between the 2- and 4-stroke engines, depending on the brand of engines. Is the 4-stroke engine right for you? Let’s look at this classic engine and you can be the judge and decide if there is a 4-stroke mill in your future.

Strokes IS THIS POWERHOUSE ENGINE RIGHT FOR YOU?

BY JOHN REID PHOTOGRAPHS BY HOPE MCCALL & JOHN REID

worldmags

POWER FACTOR

The first concern that most people have about using a 4-stroke engine is the power factor. While it’s true that a 4-stroke engine offers high-torque output, it’s also true that you have to fit a larger size 4-stroke engine in the same size aircraft that a smaller 2-stroke engine can handle. Although this seems to be a contradiction, it can be explained based upon the cylinder completely filling during the intake operation of the 4-stroke engine. Because of this, the result is a higher cylinder pressure when the power, or ignition, event happens inside the cylinder. This produces a higher torque from the 4-stroke engine as compared to the lower pressure of the 2-stroke engine. The reason we need a larger size 4-stroke engine is because the power event only APRIL 2011 37


worldmags

4-Stroke Engines

All 4-strokes engines will have some type of valve cover over the rocker arms.

occurs every other stroke of the piston, effectively reducing its numbers by half. This also reduces the maximum rpm we can achieve from a 4-stroke engine. Dave Gierke compares the 4-stroke to the 2-stroke engine in his Radio Controlled Airplane Engine Guide. “While the 2-stroke engine has a power event for each revolution of the crankshaft, the 4-stroke requires two crankshaft revolutions to create a power event. Stated another way: at a given rpm, the 4-stroke produces half as many power events as the 2-stroke. The other

Here is one of the rocker arms. From time to time, these will have to be adjusted as the engine ages.

primary difference between the two types involves the way gases are moved into and out of the mechanism: the 2-stroke uses piston-controlled ports; the 4-stroke uses cam-actuated poppet valves.”

Weight Watching There has been some concern about the weight difference between the 4- and 2-stroke engine, with the 4-stroke being so much heavier. Of course, weight is a main concern when dealing with aircraft. But newer 4-stroke engines are being produced

from very lightweight material and now are only slightly heavier than the comparable 2-stroke. A good example of this is the Saito FA-125A AAC 4-stroke engine with muffler comes in weighing at 24.69 ounces (700 g), while the O.S. Max 2-stroke 1.20AX ringed engine with muffler is lighter at 22.28 ounces (647g) it is only 2.41 ounces (53g) lighter. Making the weight is not as much of a factor as it was in the past. The other consideration is the physical size of the engine, because the 4-stroke will generally be larger in size and require a

2-stroke vs. 4-stroke Power Curves

2-stroke engines ultimately produce more horsepower than 4-stroke of equal displacement, as illustrated by the power and torque curve of the Enya SS.40 2-stroke and the Saito FA-4 4-stroke. Power isn’t everything; with a .40-size airplane, the 2-stroke produces more horsepower at the extreme high end or the rev range, but that power is generated above the usable rpm for most flyers. At anything below about 9,000rpm, the 4-stroke is actually stronger.

80

■ Enya SS .40 2-stroke ■ Saito FA-40 4-stroke

TORQUE (OZ.-IN.)

HORSEPOWER

1.20

0.80

0.40

0.00 6000

8000

10000

12000

14000

RPM

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16000

60

40

20

0.00 6000

8000

10000

12000

RPM

14000

16000


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A typical 4-stroke carburetor setup is to have the open end of the carburetor facing down.

little more space under the cowl. However, the muffler is generally smaller and easy to adjust, so less cutting will be needed on the cowl itself. The bottom line is that weight and size will be a consideration, but it is not as big of a factor as it once was.

Making soMe noise 4-stroke engines really shine in the prop size and noise arena. The scale enthusiast really enjoys both of these aspects of the 4-stroke engine. Prop size can be a little larger on the 4-stroke design and therefore makes

4-stroke engines require a specialized 4-stroke glow plug to keep them running at maximum efficiency.

Bench Running

First flight can be nerve wracking and things can be even more distressing if you can’t depend on your engine to stay running. That is why bench running your new engine on a test stand will increase your confidence and put the odds in your favor for a successful first flight. To start your break-in, securely mount the engine to a test stand, and then set the needle valves (high and low) to the manufacturer’s specifications. Prime the engine by putting your finger over the carburetor or use the choke until the fuel fills the line. Connect the glow plug and set the throttle to ½ or less. Start the engine. Run for one to two minutes with the glow battery attached, then shut down the engine. Allow the engine to cool and repeat this process five more times, allowing the engine to cool down between runs. Now run the engine for three to five minutes, allowing to cool and repeat five more times. During these runs, remove the glow driver and increase the throttle to full power for one to two minutes during the run and then return it to half throttle. Now you should be able to run it at full throttle and lean the engine to its optimal setting, and then richen the mixture so that the rpm are about 200 to 300 below the peak. It will be set correctly if you can pinch the fuel line and the rpm’s increase back to the peak setting. The engine should be able to hold this setting for several minutes. If not return to the step of running the engine for three to five minutes, it should hold the setting the second time around.

The rocker arm movement is controlled by the rods extending down into the crankshaft. Bumps on the crankshaft push the rods up at the right moment for the valve to open.

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APRIL 2011 39


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4-Stroke Engines

A Healthy Mill

Dave Gierke points out in his book that the number-one maintenance problem associated with all model internal-combustion engines is corrosion. To that end, there are a couple of things you can do to help prevent that from happening. The first thing is to purge the crankcase of any residual fuel and replace it with some after-run oil. At the end of the flying session, run the engine wide open for 15 to 25 seconds and then, if possible, close off the fuel supply going to the engine. This can be done by pinching the fuel line closed or pulling it off completely. Use either afterrun oil, Marvel Mystery Oil, or some other comparable oil. Drop in 8 to 10 drops through the carburetor while slowing flipping the prop. If the engine is going to be stored for any length of time, take out the glow plug and add 5 to 10 extra drops of oil through the glow-plug hole to ensure that the compression ring is well taken care of. Move the prop and tip the engine in various directions to get complete coverage of all internal parts.

Go-Go-Juice

4-strokes operate on methanol-based fuel and there are two key components to be concerned about to keep your engine running at its best; lubrication and nitromethane. Glow engines use fuels that can contain synthetic or castor oil for their lubricant. Some may even have a mixture of the two. The oil percentage recommended varies with manufacturers but most 4-stroke engines will run on 15- to 25-percent oil. Nitromethane recommendations run from 10- to 20-percent. Depending on the manufacturer (as always, consult your manual that is included with the engine), it will have the recommended amount of lubricant and oil. Most commercial fuel blenders offer fuel with the recommended lubrication and nitro content suggested by the engine manufacturer.

The Glow Plug

As we have seen, the 4-stroke engine requires two strokes of the piston between the compression and ignition point. Because of this a special 4- stroke glow plug had to be created. These plugs retain their element temperature throughout the exhaust and intake stroke. They accomplish that because they have a very high temperature rating as compared to a normal 2-stroke plug. The other thing that sets them apart from the normal glow plug is the extended nose that projects into the combustion chamber. This allows the nose and wire element to be exposed to a much higher temperature than a standard plug would be. This extra heat allows the 4-stroke plug to carry over that extra heat to the next ignition cycle.

the scale aircraft look and fly a little more like the full scale. These engines also sound more like the real thing and are a good deal quieter then a comparable 2-stroke. This fact also makes the 4-stroke engine more appealing to flying fields that have any type of noise abatement and are required to be considerate of their neighbors. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not to say that the 4-stroke cannot run the same size propeller as a similar sized 2-stroke, it can. At many events, especially pattern, participants compete all the time with 2- and 4-stroke engines running the same size props. This shows that

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the 4-stroke engine can turn a prop just as fast as a 2-stroke, while reducing the sound from the exhaust.

LET ME SUM UPâ&#x20AC;Ś The 4-stroke engine is nothing new; this engine type had been around for quite some time. But the construction, design and material makeup are new, giving the modern day 4-stroke engine a new feel. The power increase, noise reduction, scale realism, product reliability and longevity make the 4-stroke engine a heavy competitor in the glow engine arena. 

The low-end adjustment screw is located on this Saito inside the throttle arm.


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FLIGHTTEST

More Online! ModelAirplaneNews.com

FLIP THE SWITCHES TO HIGH RATES AND THE AIRPLANE IS CAPABLE OF ALL THE EXTREME 3D MANEUVERS YOU CAN DREAM UP.

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Precision Aerobatics

Extra 260 A top performer with big plane “feel”

by AARon HAm PhotogrAPhs by HoPe mccALL

The new Precision Aerobatics 48-inchwingspan Extra 260 is a top performer. Although this airplane is not for a firsttime flier, it can be flown by anyone who has mastered the basics of flying and has a good feel for aerobatics. In the hands of a pilot with a skilled and experienced set of thumbs, this airplane is capable of unlimited extreme freestyle aerobatics. Precision Aerobatics is offering its new Extra 260 with power and superior performance that far exceeds that of the full-scale airplane. Constructed using PA’s carbonfiber FiberFusion Technology, the airplane has embedded carbon fiber in each of the fuselage stringers and uses carbon-fiber cross bracing to increase strength without any kind of a weight penalty. To quote the Precision Aerobatics website, “FiberFusion is an engineered construction method combining carbon fiber, balsa and ply in a way never seen before, utilizing the strengths of the fibers within each raw material, with the end result being lighter, stronger, more rigid aircraft that fly like nothing else!”

UNIQUE FEATURES The kit comes with numerous carbon-fiber parts, including landing gear, a wing tube, control arms and pushrods, CNC-machined

battery tray and trailing and leading edge. Also included is a carbon-fiber reinforced fiberglass cowl and wheel pants and a generous assortment of quality hardware. Optional upgrades include carbon-fiber servo arms, a carbon-fiber spinner with CNC-machined aluminum backplate and a set of carbon-fiber wheel pants.

SpEcificationS Model: Extra 260 Distributor: Precision Aerobatics (precisionaerobatics.com) type: high-performance aerobat Wingspan: 48 in. Wing area: 490 sq. in. Weight: 33.9 oz. Wing loading: 9.9 oz./sq. ft. Motor req’d: Thrust 30 radio req’d: 4 channels with 4 servos Price: $199.95

HigHligHtS Quick assembly ++ Unparalleled stability ++ Light weight and high-strength ++ construction

Removable wings for easy ++ transport and storage

APRIL 2011 45


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worldmags PRECISION AEROBATICS EXTRA 260

The editors would like to thank the members of Fairfield League of Yankee Radio Controllers Club for the use of their Southbury, CT flying field.

In the Air We chose a nice and sunny yet somewhat windy day to fly the Tracking: With less than a 5-foot takeoff roll, little if any right Extra. We had no issue operating from our club’s grass field in rudder is needed before liftoff. Once airborne, one click of right Southbury, CT. Using full up-elevator and the Extra’s steerable rudder trim rewarded us with a perfect non-corkscrewing loop tailwheel made ground handling a snap even in a 15mph wind. and a straight ground track at 60-percent throttle. With stronger than normal breeze, the takeoff roll was short Aerobatics: Choose your control and immediate. Full power and five feet throw switch and have at it. No matter of sod was all that were needed to be GEAR USED what the rates, the Extra 260 behaves airborne. Power was more than amazing Radio: JR 9303 2.4GHz transmitter like a precise instrument. Control is with the Thrust 30 and Vox prop. The (jrradios.com) and 4 Voltec VTS-70MG immediate and on the mark. High rates Extra is certainly not underpowered with micro servos (voltecservos.com) allow perfect harriers with no wing rock, this setup. The CG was perfect for me knife-edge passes with minimal pitch at 3.8 inches aft of the leading edge. Motor: Precision Aerobatics coupling to the canopy, knife-edge One click of right rudder and one click Thrust 30 Motor with RotorKool loops with power to spare and flat spins of down-elevator allowed for hands-off Technology (thrustmotors.com) and that even made me look good. flying. With the airplane inverted, a very Precision Aerobatics Quantum 45A small amount of down-elevator was programmable brushless speed Glide and stall performance: With necessary for level flight. That’s perfect control (precisionaerobatics.com) a wing loading of 10 ounces per in my book! Battery: Precision Aerobatics square foot, glide performance can be I had an absolute ball putting the 2200mAh 20-40C 3S LiPo described as outstanding. On low-rate airplane through its paces. It has been elevator, the level attitude stall was a while since I’ve had the opportunity Prop: Vox 13x6.5 wood prop minimal and needed to be forced for a to fly an airplane with performance and (voxprops.com) good break. High-rate elevator, a small agility of the Extra. Although I am still Spinner: Precision Aerobatics amount of wind and some power will what I consider a novice at the 3D style carbon-fiber 1.8-inch spinner give you a spot landing with a 3-4 foot of flying, the stability of the 260 on high roll-out on grass. rates gave me more confidence than normal. I felt very comfortable flying the CONTROL THROWS PILOT DEBRIEFING airplane on high rates and exploring the Ailerons: ± 7⁄8 in., 30% expo (low); If you are new to line of Precision 3D and extreme maneuver envelope. ± 1 3⁄4 in., 70% expo (high) Aerobatics aircraft, let me tell you, Landings were a breeze in the breeze. you’re in for a delightful surprise. Straight on headwind landings were Rudder: ± 1 in., 35% expo (low); Although I would not consider this 3 stable and rock solid. Cross-wind ± 1 ⁄4 in., 70% expo (high) Extra 260 an airplane for the beginner, I landings were successfully achieved Elevator: ± 7⁄8 in., 30% expo (low); would recommend it to anyone who has thanks to the large and effective control ± 1 3⁄4 in., 70% expo (high) mastered the basics of aerobatic flying surfaces. Ground roll was literally non and is looking to explore the envelope of existent at 3-4 feet in the wind. more extreme aerobatics. Low rates are great for everyday precision IMAC aerobatics. Flip the switches GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE to high rates and the airplane is capable of all the extreme 3D Stability: The first sign of a well-mannered airplane starts with maneuvers you can dream up. its stability. The Extra 260 is extremely stable throughout the entire flight envelope.

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6S (25.2V)

8S (33.6V)

12S (50.4V)

PHOENIX ICE LITE SERIES

PHOENIX ICE SERIES

PHOENIX ICE HV SERIES

Up to 6S max, 25 volts max, and available in 50, 75, 100, 150 and 200 amp models. Perfect for high performance planes/helis where size weight are critical.

Up to 8S max, 34 volts max, and available in 50, 75, 100, 150 and 200 amp models. Ideal for high performance planes & helis to 8S.

Up to 12S max, 50 volts max, and available in 40, 60, 80, 120, 160, and Lite 160 amp models. Great for extreme performance planes and helis to 12S.

PHOENIX ICE DATA LOGGING All Ice controllers offer extensive data logging capabilities. Measure and record amps, volts, temperature, rpm, and ripple voltage!


worldmags PRECISION AEROBATICS EXTRA 260

In addition to the numerous carbonfiber parts included in the kit, I am also very impressed with the overall quality of the airplane. The ailerons are installed and sealed using pocket hinges. Simply install the aileron servos, attach the linkages and heat-shrink a 6-inch extension to the servo lead. Although I was a bit skeptical about the process of using thread and thin CA to attach the pushrod to the Z-bend linkage, I found it very easy to do. It allowed an absolute perfect length and perfect geometry between the arm and the control horn. The elevator and rudder use CA-type hinges and use the same technique to attach the control rods. Be sure to slide the shrink tubing on each of the pushrods before securing the Z-bend. In this particular kit, the wing tube seemed ¼ inch too long. Rather than try to force it in the socket and risk damage, it was easier to cut the ¼ inch off with a Dremel Moto-Tool. The problem was solved and proved to be a perfect fit. The wings are then secured to the fuselage with a nylon bolt on each wing panel. The manual has you insert the nylon bolt from inside the wing so that it protrudes out of the precut hole in the wing root. It was an interesting design that I had not seen before. Simply hold it in place, make sure it is straight, and add a sufficient amount of CA to secure it. Once cured, the supplied nut and washer are then used to hold the wing to the fuselage. Due to the Extra’s compact size, I don’t see ever needing to remove the wings again but you have the option if needed. The preglued motor box is secured to the fuselage using carbon-fiber pins. As stated in the manual, Precision Aerobatics has done exhaustive testing and designed the mounts for the Thrust 30 motor, and using a larger motor could cause failure.

PHOTO COURTESY OF MIKE MARSHALL

FLIGHTTEST

Extra Fun Aerobat The full-scale Extra 260 is the brainchild of Walter Extra and his company Extra Flugseugbau of Dinslaken, Germany. In 1982, Walter was a participant in the World Aerobatic Championships flying the ever-popular Pitts Special. He quickly learned that the newer monoplanes like the Stevens Acro and the Laser 200 were scoring higher than the ever-dominant Pitts. Subsequently, he spent the next year designing the Extra 230 and competed with it in the World competition in 1984. In 1986, he developed a high-performance version named the Extra 260. By 1990, many Extras were competing at every level of competition and later that same year, world-famous Patty Wagstaff (three-time National Aerobatic Champion and World Aerobatic competitor) chose to make the Extra 260 her primary aircraft for both competition and air-shows. Today, Extra aircraft are among the most nimble and high-performance aircraft available for aerobatic competitors and airshow performers alike.

Mix up a fair amount of epoxy when securing the pins and use the remaining epoxy to lightly coat each of the factory preglued joints for added security. The Extra is capable of extreme aerobatics. A little prevention at this step will go a long way. Finally, with the motor mounted and the airplane balanced in the middle of the recommended range, we were ready to fly.

The Extra 260 uses strong, lightweight carbon-fiber aileron control linkages with Z-bend wire end pieces. 48 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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CONCLUSION Precision Aerobatics is quickly earning the reputation of producing superior highquality aircraft. They have done extensive research and development to combine the ultimate airframe and powerplant combination. In less than five hours of simple assembly, you can reward yourself with an all-out, extreme aerobat capable of nearly anything you can imagine. I love this thing! 

Plenty of room inside for radio gear and battery pack.


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ANDREW JESKY

Monroe, Michigan, USA Age: 22 Q60-7M FAI

Sponsors: -

Hacker Brushless USA Thunder Power 3D Hobby Shop Futaba

Competition wins:

TP 5000-10SPL2 30C

USA F3A FAI National Champion 2010 & 2008 1st Place ETOC 2008 1st Place XFC 2008 & 2005 MasterSPIN-99-OPTO ESC

CALL US AT:

480-726-7519

www.Aero-Model.com


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Let’s tALk

GiAnt scALe By JOHn GlEzEllIS

Maximizing Your Aircraft’s Safety and Reliability

A

At some point during our rC career, we have all seen, or experienced, a crash that could have been prevented. While there are many areas that could’ve been the cause, we can break our discussion into a few steps that are all located “under the hood” of your aircraft. this month, the key principle to remember is safety. Let’s examine the different ways to install the fuel lines and then cover throttle servo choices and the importance of using equipment. We’ll wrap things up with the benefits of the optical kill switch.

Plumbing Woes in recent years, some “almost-ready-tofly” manufacturers have taken the liberty to actually install the firewall as well the fuel tank and all corresponding fuel lines. regardless, i always take the fuel tanks apart in these ArF models to ensure that all key steps have been taken. A few different ways exist that one can install the fuel lines of their model. personally, for ease and accessibility, i always use a “fuel filler” such as those from Hangar 9, desert Aircraft, and 3W. to install a fuel filler (often referred to as a fuel dot), one can either install a third line in the fuel tank with a clunk so that you have the following:

Here is a 3-line setup on Ray Labonte’s 40% Extra 260. Where one fuel line goes to the engine (the one located at the front of the tank), one line goes to a fuel filler (located on the exterior of the model), and one line is the vent line (located under the aircraft).

• one fuel line within the tank has a clunk and goes to the carburetor • one fuel line within the tank has a clunk and goes to the fuel dot/fuel filler • the last fuel line is the vent line, which is located at the top of the fuel tank

Secure all fuel lines whenever possible. Shown here is the vent line on my Hangar 9 Sukhoi.

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or, if you don’t want to add a third fuel line like it is mentioned above, you can add a “t” fitting off of the fuel line with a clunk so that one end of the line will go to the carburetor and the other end of the line will go to the fuel filler/fuel dot. using fuel dots are a clean and efficient way to fuel up your model. And, depending on the brand, can be quite stylish as they are available in plastic as well as anodized aluminum. make sure that all fuel lines do not make any contact with any hot component of the engine. For example, don’t have a fuel line that is so long within the cowling that it can make contact with the airplane’s muffler. this is a recipe for disaster! secure all fuel lines in place using a small cable tie or sullivan’s twist-tie clamps. Failure to do so can result in the loss of your model due to the fact that a fuel line may come undone, causing the engine of your model to quit. remember, though, your aircraft


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On my B & B Specialties clunk, you can see the black cable tie that keeps the fuel line on the clunk. This is a must!

will require routine maintenance. I recommend that you check your fuel lines yearly to guarantee that the fuel line does not become stiff with age and use. Modelers are sometimes surprised when their engine quits and they find that the source of this occurrence was the fact that the clunk line within the tank hardened, and didn’t allow the proper pickup of fuel.

thrOttle ServO and ignitiOn Battery chOiceS The next possible failure point is the throttle servo. On my 40-percent competition airframes, I typically use high-voltage servos throughout the model as I want to avoid voltage regulators when possible. However, I have seen some modelers use high-quality servos throughout their aircraft, but when it comes time to the throttle servo, they use a standard servo that has plastic gears. I know that opinions differ on many matters, but for a throttle servo on a gasoline-powered model, I prefer to use metal gear servos. In the past, I used

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TIP of The MonTh wire wary

You can see on my 50cc Extreme Flight Extra 300 that I even keep my fuel lines secured using Velcro. Please note, this line is the fuel line that goes to my fuel filler to fill the fuel and defuel my model.

digital servos with all-plastic gears. With time and vibration (mainly time and use), the threads on the servo gear that the servo screw fastens to can become stripped. Simply said, I don’t want any component on my airframe to fail. I use digital servos for the best transition, feel on a given surface, and holding power. Also, I prefer a metal gear servo with a touch of Zap thread-locker to ensure that no bolt comes undone! Despite the fact that I mentioned that one should avoid the use of voltage regulators when possible, it is sometimes unavoidable. For example, some engines can have a battery that supplies 8.4V to the ignition module. Others simply cannot. I recommend that you first consult the manual that was supplied with your engine and see what voltage it can handle. If your ignition module cannot support a battery that is above 6.0V, it will be necessary to use a voltage regulator when using lithium

Always be wary of all electrical components within your model. Shown here is the motor box of a 37-percent model I recently built. Since the ignition battery was mounted on the exterior of the motor box, I decided to make a 1 ⁄2-inch hole for the battery lead to go through. However, I did not want the lead to rub against the lite-ply. I used silicone and glued a piece of fuel tubing around the diameter of the 1⁄2-inch hole. Now, there is no possible way for this battery lead to become torn after many flights are performed on this airframe.

To keep linkages direct on my throttle, I mounted the throttle servo directly behind the firewall of the aircraft. This enabled me to use a Hangar 9 Pro-Link turnbuckle and 4-40 ball-links going both to and from the carburetor to provide my model with a “slop-free” linkage system.

batteries. There are many options for voltage regulators, but I recommend that you look for a redundant regulator. For example, if the power switch for the Spektrum VR6010 regulator becomes unplugged in flight, it fails in the “on” position, and can become quite useful if you are flying low to the ground.

Optical Kill Switch Having flown radio-control airplanes for over 20 years and giant-scale models for the past 15, I’ve been around long enough to have heard a few horror stories when it comes to engines. Some people have started their engines without first turning on their receiver, which can be done since the ignition switch and battery are separate from the receiver’s power source. From personal experience, I once had a throttle servo stop functioning. Luckily, it was at idle so the airplane landed safely. However, this could have happened at 25-percent power or 100-percent throttle. In that event, it would be neat to stop the engine by another means, and there is. With the use of an optical kill switch, the end user can shut the engine of the model off with the flip of a switch. Smart Fly offers their Ignition Cutoff, which has two modules called the fiber optic transmitter and the fiber optic receiver. These two units are connected to one another by means of a fiber-optic cable. In short, the Ignition Cutoff is connected to a selected channel on the receiver of the aircraft and assigned to a switch on the transmitter. When the transmitter switch is in the “off” position, the power is shut off to the ignition. To use this unit, you will need a spare APRIL 2011 53


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Let’s taLk Giant scaLe port on your receiver. If you are using a radio like the JR 11X, you can assign a given channel to a switch using the Device Select screen. If not, I recommend that you use the Gear Switch on your transmitter and plug this device into the Gear Port on your receiver. Regardless of the switch that you choose, just make sure you don’t accidentally flip this switch in flight as you will cause an unwanted dead-stick landing. The transmitter module can be connected to two receivers. Let’s say that you are using one receiver. Simply plug the specified lead into the receiver port of the channel you wish to utilize for this device. Next, fasten the fiber-optic cable to the Transmitter Module via the fiber-optic connector and secure the transmitter unit via either Velcro or servo tape. Now, secure the fiber-optic receiver to the fiber-optic connector and mount it near the ignition module. Please note, though, that the receiver module will be plugged in between the ignition switch and the ignition. So, if you are using a voltage regulator, you will need to mount it between the regulator and the ignition (if using a Spektrum VR

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The fiber-optic transmitter has been installed using Velcro and is attached to both the receiver and to the fiber-optic receiver via the fiber-optic cable.

6010 that has a switch input on the regulator itself. A red LED is supplied and I recommend that you install it—mainly it serves as a great visual item. When the ignition is in the “on” position, the LED lights up red. Otherwise, when the ignition is off, it does not light at all.

Final thoughts You have now learned about a few key

The ignition switch is turned “on” and the ignition has been activated via the fiberoptic kill with the flip of a switch on my transmitter. As you can see, the ignition light is red, which means that we are ready to rock and roll!

safety tips that everyone in the giant-scale world should follow. The longevity of your airplane relies on not only how the model is flown, but also how it is built. There are many different ways to perform a given task, but safety and redundancy is key. Following these tips will lead you onto the path of success, and keep your model flying for years! 


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Snowbird Skis

F LY- A L L - Y E A R Snowbird Skis are manufactured out of high density polyethylene and runners are molded right on the ski for better tracking. Ideal for up to .60 powered aircraft. Featuring a spring loaded design, our Snowbird Skis ďŹ&#x201A;ex on take-offs and landings yet remain in a positive lock position while in the air. Cat. No. 825-828 Snowbird Skis Cat. No. 830 Park Flyer Snow Skis

NEW FUEL TANKS NEW

GIANT

SIZES

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60 oz 80 oz 100 oz


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Product Review BY DICK PETTIT | PHOTOGRAPHS BY HOPE McCALL & DICK PETTIT

Thunder Power TP-610C Charger

W

A battery management system that does it all

WHEN YOUR PLANE OR helicopter takes to the air, you need to trust the capability of its batteries to provide power for the length of time you plan to use them. This can only be done with some sort of modern battery management system that will not only charge your batteries at a proper rate for a proper time, but also perform maintenance and rejuvenation operations as necessary, which almost always guarantees that your batteries will serve you for a long time. I was given the opportunity to use the Thunder Power TP-610C to perform some realworld testing using all the various battery chemistries it could handle. Actual testing and monitoring was performed using laboratory-quality test equipment. The battery assortment I use on a regular basis consists of NiMH transmitter batteries and A123 (lithium nano-phosphate) receiver batteries, with several lead-acid batteries to power my field charger and electric starter. The Thunder Power TP-610C is packaged in a 4.75x3.25x1-inch extruded aluminum

case with a green backlit LCD screen and several function buttons that “click” when you push them. The 33-inch input power wires have alligator clips on the ends that can attach to banana jacks, battery posts, or just about any power supply output. The output plugs are also banana type, and there is an input connector for the BL-2 Balance Tap for balance-charging LiFe and LiPo multi-cell batteries. The LCD screen shows the user everything being done to the battery during the operations, including battery technology selected, mode of operation, charge or discharge current selected, milliamps in or out and elapsed time for a particular operation. A memory feature can store up to 25 charge conditions for future use. There are a few errors in the display, the most notable being the abbreviation of the word “balance”(two different ways)!

GETTING STARTED First of all, you need to provide a source of

The TP-610C charger comes with this balancing adapter and output charge cords. 56 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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SPECIFICATIONS Name: TP-610C Manufacturer: Thunder Power (thunderpowerrc.com) Type: Charger/discharger/cycler/ balancer Works with: 1- to 6-cell LiPo & A123 cells, 14 Ni-Cd/NiMH cells and 6-12V Pb Price: $99.99

If you make your own charge cords, be sure to use heavy-gauge wires, as this charger is capable of delivering up to 10 amps of output current. power to the charger, and I used a lab-quality adjustable 0-60V, 18A power supply. I used several lab-quality multimeters to measure input and output current and voltages under all modes of operation, and I also monitored the temperature of the charger and batteries during testing. Since many of my other battery chargers use banana plugs with which to connect to battery connectors, I used my charge cables rather than solder up a number of connectors to the output wires included. If you make your own charge cords, be sure to use heavy-gauge wires, as this charger is capable of delivering up to 10 amps of


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output current, and the miniscule charge cords provided in many radio systems will heat up quickly (not to mention the high voltage drop they would incur). I use at least 14-gauge wires on my high-current charge leads and keep them as short as practical. In the shop at work, I began with a 7Ah sealed lead acid (SLA). It was fully charged, so the first thing I did was set up a discharge at 700mA. This is the maximum discharge current for a 12V SLA battery, so it may take a while to fully discharge, and the open circuit voltage was about 12.8 volts. Once the discharge cycle started, the battery voltage began to drop, but the discharge current only read 600mA. I checked this with a digital voltmeter, and it read only 608mA current being drawn from the battery. The TP-610C case was getting warm, and I recorded a temperature of 130 degrees F at the hottest point. This isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t all that hot, but there is no fan inside to dissipate the heat. The highest discharge current available from the charger is 1 amp, so the unit should not get much hotter than this. While discharging, the TP-610C draws 61 milliamps from the power supply, no

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matter how much discharge current you program in. Somewhere during the discharge cycle, the TP-610C indicated a battery voltage of 12.351 volts, and a digital voltmeter indicated 12.450 volts, a difference of 1.24 percentâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;quite acceptable for a unit of this type. Another feature is the ability to set the cutoff voltage for multicell batteries being discharged. Some technologies have different cutoff voltages that are used to determine battery capacity, and this option makes it easy to set the value correctly. Later in the week, I discharged and recharged several other battery technologies, including an 8-cell 600mAh Ni-Cd transmitter battery, a 4-cell 900mAh NiMH receiver battery, a 2-cell 2300mAh A123 and a 2-cell 1100mAh LiPo, and the results are shown in the table. The 4-cell NiMH I was planning to use on the test cycle seemed to charge well, but when I tried to discharge it, its voltage level fell to the floor immediately. I tried charging it several times more with the same results. The TP-610C found the problem for meâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;rather than me finding it at

the flying field! All of the battery technologies can be cycled up to five times during a test, with the results being displayed on the LCD screen for each cycle. I like to charge and cycle any new batteries I am planning to use and record this information on the battery itself for future reference. This way, if I cycle that battery again somewhere down the road, I can compare the results with those I got when the battery was brand-new. If the results differ by more than 20 percent, I relegate that battery to uses other than in my models.

BALANCE CHARGING Balance charging is usually necessary on LiPo and LiFe batteries that have more than 2 cells in series. Due to aging that takes place within each cell, the internal impedance can change, making for widely different voltages on each cell. Balancing is the process of discharging the battery and then recharging the entire battery using the balancer. The TP-610C comes with a balancing adapter that can be used to balance up APRIL 2011 57


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Thunder Power TP-610C Charger

Battery Charging Tests Battery

Discharge Current (TP-610C/ external meter)

Discharge Voltage

Charge Current

Charge Voltage

TP-610C Case Temp.

Battery Temp.

12V Sealed Lead-Acid 7Ah

0.708A/0.608A*

12.351V/12.450V*

2.0A/1.94A

13.223V/13.096V*

124˚ F

120˚ F

8-Cell 9.6V 600mAh Ni-Cd

0.800A/0.807A

9.164V/9.315V*

0.500A/0.489A

10.658V/10.678V

125˚ F

89˚ F

4-cell 4.8V 900mAh NiMH

4.500V/4.523V

0.250A/0.229A

bad battery; see text

bad battery; see text

N/A

N/A

2-cell 2300mAh A123 battery

1.000A/1.006A

6.617V/6.713V*

5.000A/5.030A

6.614V/6.689V

130˚ F

188˚ F

2 cell 2100mAh LiPo battery

0.500A/0.489A

7.456V/7.793V*

0.750A/0.7205A

8.090V/8.281V*

119˚ F

88˚ F

* The difference between the TP-610C and the external meter measurement is because the charger measures the voltage at a different physical location than the external meter.

to 6-cell batteries. I used my 2-cell A123 battery to check the operation of the balancer. Both the battery output lead and the balancing tap must be connected to the TP610C. If your battery has no balancing tap, you cannot balance charge your battery. I first discharged the 2-cell A123 and then connected the balancer according to the manual. It checks the battery status to see if it is ready to be balance charged and then starts charging the battery. Although it never mentions this, it probably charges the lower voltage cells until they match the voltage of the higher cells and continues to

“balance” each cell until the battery is fully charged. At the end of the charge cycle, the TP-610C reports the voltage value of each cell, and in the case of my 2-cell battery, it showed that one cell measured 3.596 volts and the other one measured 3.504 volts. I’d say the battery had been successfully balanced.

CONCLUSION As far as operational comments, I noticed several modes of operation on the TP610C. First, when the unit begins to either charge or discharge, it does not begin at

If you have a battery that is 90 percent charged, the TP-610C does not try to push the full current into it, risking overheating the battery.

An end view showing output jacks and balancing port.

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full charge or discharge current. Instead it “soft-starts” by ramping up the current level until full charge or discharge current is attained. This may take almost a minute depending on the set value. Also, as the battery being charged approaches its terminal voltage, the charge current begins to decrease slowly. If you have a battery that is 90 percent charged, the TP-610C does not try to push the full current into it, risking overheating the battery. Instead, it determines the state of battery charge and sets the charge current accordingly. Once I got used to the operational characteristics of the TP-610C, it was quite easy to charge, discharge, or cycle any battery on hand. It’s compact, versatile and cost effective; you get a lot of charger for your money. 


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UltImateelectrIcs By JOHN REID

Charging LiPo Batteries Safely 5

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Here is my charging desk. As you can see, the batteries are charged on top of the marble countertop (1) while they are inside the charging bag (2) or the battery bunker (3). Just above, out of the photo, is my smoke detector. The three chargers I have here are the Hitec 4 (4), Thunder Power TP-1010C (5), the TME Xtrema (Behind the Battery Bunker) and my Pro-Peak DC power Supply (6). I often hear storIes of how people are

terrified of charging LiPo batteries at home; they think that if they charge the batteries there, that eventually, one will malfunction and burn down the house. While you cannot rule that out with total certainty, we can say that the odds of a LiPo battery catching fire are very unlikely, if you just follow a few safety precautions. this is an outline of what I do when charging batteries and how I have my charging station set up at home. I have charged many battery packs over the years with this setup and feel it’s about as safe as I can make it. however, if you have additional methods or ideas for safety, I would like to hear from you. Please e-mail me at johnr@airage.com

and maybe I can share some of them in my next column!

Rules foR chaRging the first rule is the most important; never leave your charging battery unattended! again, you should never (and I do mean never) leave your charging battery unattended. although, in this age of batteryoperated devices, who hasn’t left a phone, power tool, laptop, gaming system, etc., on charge with little or no supervision, maybe even charging all night while we sleep? I’m sure I’m not the only one. of course, these items come with their own charger designed only for that item. Your safety backup there is the fact that those

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batteries and charger have been tested to every extreme. for them to be on the market, they had to always work exactly as they should with never an issue or problem. Battery charging in our hobby is very different, because we have the choice of a wide array of different chargers and battery combinations. We also have the option of setting the charging rate, which, by its very nature, opens up the possibility of human error. In order to combat this, charger manufacturers have installed checking sensors that let us know if there is a compatibility issue with what is hooked up to the charger and what we programmed in. I admit, there are times when I do leave the room and therefore leave my battery


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MaxaMps MV2200 Multi-Voltage liPo Battery Packs

Here is the Maxamps MV2200 hooked up in series ready to be installed inside my aircraft. i have six cells so i can make any pack from 1s to 6s.

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very once in a while, an idea comes around where you think, “Now, this is really cool.” The new MaxAmps Multi-Voltage LiPo Battery Packs are just such an idea. Right now, the packs are available in a 2200mAh and 5250mAh packs. I tested the 2200mAh packs and I have to say I was impressed with the performance of the battery cells. They are listed as a 60C (surge) battery, but I was only running them at 30C most of the time with little heat buildup. While performance is important, the real cool factor on these battery packs is that you can make them any size you want, because they are adjustable. You buy the cell individually and they’re wrapped in a semisolid case. Each cell is its own individual module that makes for easy and fast assembly and disassembly of a pack. The batteries come with a connector that allows you to build the pack in series or parallel (which is used for charging). You simply buy the number of cells you want for your pack, use the series connector to connect red to black, and red to black until all of the cells you need are connected. From there, you connect the appropriate battery lead to the remaining red/ black plugs, wrap the cells with the provided Velcro straps and you have your custom battery pack. For charging, you dissemble the cells and reconnect them in in this photo, i have the cells connected in parallel, once connected they start to balance out. Because i don’t have a large charger that can do 13.2a, i break down my parallel pack into three and two (as this example of a five cell) packs for charging.

unattended. However, it’s only for as brief of a moment as possible like when I answer the door. When I have to leave for a longer time I disconnect the battery and charger, shut everything down and just resume the charging when I am back in the room. Keep in mind that your observational skills will be your best asset to charging safety.

parallel to make one large single-cell battery. My six 2200mAh cells make one 13,200mAh (13.2 A) single cell battery. Because I don’t have a charger that large, I just charge three of them at a time making a 6600mAh (6.6 A) pack. The beauty of this is as soon as the cells are connected in parallel they balance to each other. So every charge you make on these batteries will be a perfect balance cycle. No need to have a balance charger. The batteries do have some pros and cons. On the con side, they are a slightly heavier than the same size battery. The MV2200 Multi-Voltage was .75 once heaver than the other two 3-cell packs I weighed. They are slightly more in price. On the pro side, you can buy them one to six cells at a time (build as you need them). In a crash, just replace the cells that got damaged. If one cell goes bad, just replace that, no need to get a whole new battery. No balance charger needed. Build the size battery pack you need, and if your plane is just not quite there with three cells, you can add a fourth and test it out with that power setup. Everything is clearly marked and color coded with red for positive (+) and black for negative (-). The connectors are made for only making series or parallel packs; it would be hard for a normal person to mess that up. Trust me, if connecting these cells up correctly is a problem for you, then you should not be around something that has a spinning prop on the front of it, way more danger there. Check out the instructional video at maxamps.com and think about these packs for your next electric project. They are priced at (MV2200) $27.49 to $102.49, depending on the number of cells and type of connector plug.

charging station to increase the safety of the charging process and reduce any possible risks. I’m always charging batteries and have incorporated some ideas in my charging area that may help you decide what to have in your area. After years of charging, I’ve been lucky enough not to have any issues, and I intend to keep it that way. Here are some of my ideas:

playing it safe There are many things you can add to your

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Safe surface: I charge my batteries on

a solid, non-flammable surface. I have a piece of cut resin countertop that is used for bathroom counters in my work area. This surface will not allow any fire to burn through if one should start. I have heard of people using their fireplace to do all of their charging so that if any pack should “vent,” it’s already in a safe place to do so. This does not work for me because there is no outlet close to the fireplace and I am more likely to trip on the extension cord. APRIL 2011 63


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Ultimateelectrics A solid non-flammable surface is have a smoke detector if I have a must. no way to put out the fire? Safe space: Notice the space I have around a charging battery. final thought This air space will allow any fire Another little thing I like to to burn itself out without creatdo is have at least a six-inch ing a high enough temperature extension between the charger to ignite anything near it. When and battery pack. The reason a battery does “vent,” the time for this is that in the event a of the open flame is rather short. battery does “vent,” our natuAny type of open space will preral instinct is to pull it off the vent that flame from spreading charger and maybe run it outand just burn itself out. side. If this is possible to do Safety wrap: With all of the LiPo safely, it’s not a bad idea. The sacks and containers available only problem is that the cable today, there is no reason not to off the battery is rather short Normally this is done while the battery is in the bag. While my have every charging battery in a and grabbing that next to a battery packs are charging, I check their temperature just to make sure they aren’t getting hot. fireproof container. I like to use the flaming pack may not be posBattery Bunkers (batterybunker.com) ceramic “venting,” you’ll notice that they smoke sible. Having a short extension will give containers for most battery packs. For my a lot before any flames ever appear. My you something to disconnect safely, grab larger packs, I use the XPS LiPo sack (xtreme smoke detector will be ringing long before and hold while screaming and running powersystems.com), they are top quality and any fire makes it way out the battery pack. through the house. big enough to handle even my largest pack. This will give me plenty of time to rectify I never had anything happen during No smoking: I have a smoke detector the problem before it escalates. charging, but if something did, I feel that my mounted just above my charging bench. If Firefighter wannabe: If I ever need it, a fire setup should help to protect me from any you ever watch a video with battery packs extinguisher is within arm’s reach. Why charging event. 

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IF YOU WANT SOMETHING TO DO 3D AEROBATICS IN YOUR BACKYARD, I CAN’T THINK OF ANOTHER PLANE THAT’S MORE CAPABLE


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E-flite

UMX Beast BNF The little aerobatic biplane is a fistful of excitement

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The UMX is a 4-channel flyer and I used my spektrum DX8 for control. By GeRRy yARRIsh PhoTograPhs By hoPe MccALL

One of the most exciting planes to hit the market in 2010 was the Beast giant-scale biplane from Hangar 9. We reviewed this amazing aerobatic performer in our September 2010 issue and even back then there was a hint of more “Beast” to come. When we found out that Horizon Hobby would be distributing a micro park flyersized Beast biplane, we quickly signed up for one. And believe me, the new Ultra Micro Extreme (UMX) Beast was well worth the wait! Although it’s small, with a wingspan just under 15 inches, it really delivers a highpowered aerobatic experience. Once you take it out of the box and head to the field, you’ll never look back. You should have seen the looks and grins we got when we arrived at the flying field with this one! Once it was in the air, everyone who saw it fly was sold! Let’s take a closer look.

speciFicatioNs Model: UMX Beast Type: Bind-N-Fly Micro Aerobatic Park Flyer Biplane Manufacturer: E-flite (e-fliterc.com) Distributed by: Horizon Hobby (horizonhobby.com) Wingspan: 14.7 in. Wing area: 83.8 sq. in. Weight: 2.36 oz. Wing loading: 4.06 oz./sq. ft. Length: 15.7 in.

HigHligHts Great aerobatic performance ++ Smooth response ++ Completely ready to fly ++ Awesome good looks ++ APRIL 2011 69


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The motor and battery pack are located under the engine cowl hatch.

UNIQUE FEATURES The UMX Beast is molded of foam and comes with an impressive “scale” Beast trim scheme. It comes completely built and ready for flight. All you have to do with this Bind-N-Fly beauty is bind it to any DSM2-compatible aircraft transmitter that features dual rates and expo. For this review plane, I chose the Spektrum DX8 8-channel transmitter and within minutes, we were off and flying. The UMX Beast BNF comes completely assembled and there’s nothing to glue or adjust. It comes with its landing gear installed and all the pushrods and thin carbon-fiber wing rigging already in place.

GEAR USED Radio: Spektrum DX8 transmitter (spektrumrc.com); AR6400LBL 6CH brushless speed control receiver (installed) Motor: 180BL 2300kV brushless outrunner (installed) Prop: 5 x 2.75 (installed) Battery: 2S 7.4V 120mAh LiPo (included)

CONTROL THROWS There’s no need to measure the control throws, just enter the Dual Rate/Expo function of your transmitter and enter the following: Aileron: 60% (low), 30% expo; 100% (high), 55% expo Elevator: 45% (low), 15% expo; 100% (high), 50% expo Rudder: 45% (low), 30% expo; 100% (high) 70% expo

In the Air As mentioned earlier, the UMX Beast’s awesome aerobatic performance comes from a brushless motor, propeller and battery combination that delivers a surprising thrust-to-weight ratio. On the wing, this pint-sized aerobat feels like a much larger aerobatic plane. For the first flight, I switched everything to low rates and handlaunched into the mild 3 to 5mph headwind. There’s plenty of power, so all you have to do is toss it wings level and nose up just slightly. GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE Stability: With the control throws set at the factory recommendations and the battery installed toward the front of the battery compartment within the engine cowl, I found the UMX Beast a delight to fly. It is not at all twitchy and is as neutrally stable as you would want any aerobatic plane. The model is so stable on low rates that with just a hint of a headwind, I was easily able to harrier it down from about 30 feet to a perfect pinpoint landing at my feet. Tracking: With its 4-channel full-house control, you have plenty of yaw authority with the rudder. Very little rudder input is required for nice, smooth aileron turns and rolls. Having such small wheels, the little Beast has no takeoff or landing rollout being hand-launched to become airborne. Indoors, you can guide it around the ground with great precision. Aerobatics: This is really what this little firecracker was designed for. It’s powerto-weight ratio gives is amazing climb performance and penetration that you have total control. Loops, avalanches, inverted loops and 4-point rolls are all easily within its capabilities. Inverted flight is a non-issue and it remains very stable with the landing gear pointing skyward. Snaps even in a vertical up-line are crisp and knifeedge flight is really dialed in. The first time out, I was even able to do a fairly decent knife-edge loop. On high rates, you have a real ball of fire and the roll rate kicks into high gear. If you want something to do aerobatics in your backyard, I can’t think of another plane that’s more capable. Stall/Glide Performance: The snap performance really shows the wing can be quickly stalled and unstalled and it has the feel of a bigger plane. There’s plenty of elevator on hand and you can get the plane to go into a spin very easily and even do nice, flat spins both upright and inverted. To get out of the stall, just neutralize the controls and feed in a little power. Glide is just like any biplane and to maintain airspeed, you keep the nose down. PILOT DEBRIEFING Just because this is a small backyard flyer-sized airplane, don’t be fooled. It’s a highperformance biplane with a lion’s heart! Treat it as you would any aerobatic plane and have fun. If you fool around and get it flying too slow, the stall is a nonissue easily recovered from. If you hit the grass, it weighs only two ounces and so there’s little kinetic energy if some damage occurs.

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worldmags E-FLITE UMX BEAST BNF

Little Size, Big Performance Designed by aerobatic world champion, Quique Somenzini, the UMX Beast is, in many ways, just as thrilling and awe inspiring as its giantscale gas-powered predecessor. We caught up with Quique to learn some more about the thinking behind this pint-sized performer. The UMX Beast really pushes the limits of micro airplane performance. How did this project come to be? I started thinking about the micro Beast while I was still working on the full-size and the giant-scale Beast from Hangar 9. We wanted the little Beast to look good but more importantly, to have great performance.

A functional tailwheel makes taxiing on smooth surfaces easy.

It’s powered by a BL180 brushless outrunner motor and has a Spektrum AR6400LBL Ultra Micro DSM2 receiver/BL speed control already installed. The ailerons are driven by two independent long-throw Spektrum AS2000L servos attached to the bottom of the lower-wing panels and the AR6400LBL drives the elevator and rudder. A 2S 7.4V 120mAh 20C LiPo battery and DC 12V LiPo charger are also included. The 12V LiPo battery charger comes with alligator clips to attach to your power supply. It’s easy to use a cigarette lighter power cord and cut the ends so you can connect the clips to the wire leads. I also found it very convenient to attach the charger to a large capacity 3S 11.1V LiPo pack and use it as a power source. The charger has two LED indicator lamps, a red and green one. When the red one is flashing, the battery and your pack is charging. When the red and green LED are flashing, the charger is balancing the pack, and when the green LED stays lit, the pack is completely charged and ready to go. I would definitely consider purchasing another flight pack to increase your flying time between chargers. A full charge can be done in about 25 minutes. To bind the little Beast to the DX8, you first connect the battery to the speed control power lead. Wait a few seconds, then while holding the Bind button down, switch on the DX8. In a few moments, the bind is complete and you’re ready to go. There is no binding plug required.

How did you get that level of performance? Two ways. We kept the weight (only 2 ounces ready to fly) as light as possible and used a 2S battery pack for more voltage. We wanted to have a powerto-weight ratio that would give the model the response and feel of a larger airplane, and the BL-180 outrunner brushless motor and prop combination does it. All of this aligned with the right aerodynamic design. The model’s scale looks are just amazing. Are the flying wires just for looks? No. Actually the thin carbon-fiber flying wires are functional and they make the plane’s wings very ridged. This is important when you want to get that big plane feel. After all, response and performance were the main goals for the plane in the first place. As a note, Kevin Kimball (builder/designer of the full-scale Beast) sent me the files from the full-size Beast, I just scale them down a bit … I tell you, they are scale! Do you have any recommendations for would-be UMX Beast Pilots? Though this is a small airplane, it is a highperformance flyer. It can perform most of the IMAC sequences like rolls, loops, rolling circles and combinations. It is designed for precision aerobatics. Because of its high performance, you do need to fly it outdoors or at a very large indoor facility. Also, you should have at least intermediate piloting skills. But because of it performance, it handles the wind with great authority. Finally, I would say it is a “pure” airplane with no couplings and will make you a better pilot!.

CONCLUSION If you want aerobatics, this little Beast has a fistful of performance on tap. Designed by Quique Somenzini, the UMX Beast has all the excitement and styling of its giantscale counterpart. If you’re an intermediate pilot, I highly recommend it.  72 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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March 19-20, 2011 Pomona Fairplex, Pomona, CA

RCX.com Enter discount code MAN11 for $5 off regular admission!

THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH! This year’s event will be bigger, badder and better than ever as thousands of RC enthusiasts will be blown away by the show’s raw energy and power. With a sold-out show floor featuring many new exhibitors, RCX has all the pulse-pounding action, head-to-head racing and aerobatic stunts an RC fanatic could want. Wherever you look—indoors or out—this event is jammed with excitement. Now in its ninth year, RCX will take over a large portion of the popular Fairplex in Pomona, CA, the weekend of March 19 and 20, 2011 (Saturday: 10-6; Sunday 10-5). With indoor and outdoor flight zones, outdoor boat ponds and indoor and outdoor dirt racetracks, attendees are immersed in the action and can see the latest RC planes, helicopters, trucks, cars and boats. Bring your kids, who can participate in the Make It, Take It program that helps them assemble and fly balsa gliders, while you can shop for the hottest new products at vendor booths and mega hobby retailers, which will 74 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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have stores full of product at the show! In addition to the Model Airplane News Expo, which is in its own hall, you can visit the main RCX hall and the International Die Cast X Collectors Expo, the outdoor boat pond, food vendors with treats from ice cream to steak sandwiches and much, much more! The best part? Bring your AMA card or military ID and get in free!


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NONSTOP INDOOR FLIGHT DEMOS Hotshot pilots from all over Southern California will be flying everything from micro planes and helicopters to extreme aerobats. Check out the latest planes and aircraft and the best piloting you’ve ever seen both days of the show.

OUTDOOR FLIGHT DEMOS

The Pomona Fairgrounds will create an outdoor flight zone where pro pilots will be showing off the latest glow and electric helicopters and 3D planes! Let the guys who get paid to fly for a living show you how it’s done!

“TRY ME” FLIGHT SIMS

Check out the latest flight sims! Whether you want to test your skills against your friends or try out the newest versions, you’ll have a blast.

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MAKE IT, TAKE IT

Get your kids hooked on aviation! This supervised program lets them build their own balsa glider, then fly it against their friends. Go ahead; we bet you can’t toss one of these little gliders just once!

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SCALE STATIC DISPLAY

Check out museum-quality scale planes and helicopters as well as giant-scale 3D aerobats, the latest ARFs and more!

AIRPLANE & HELI VENDORS

Don’t miss the latest new products and gear—all here and ready for your close inspection. And there are some great deals, too; not only can you check out the best planes, engines and motors, you can also take them home with you!

Sponsors

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RCX EXPO

In the main hall, the RCX Expo features the latest RC cars and trucks at the huge dirt track and a micro car racing track. You can even crawl “Try Me” Mountain, test your drift-track skills and much more.

INTERNATIONAL DIE CAST X COLLECTORS EXPO

Where else can you get exclusive and first looks at new models and talk to diecast industry legends and celebrities from the automotive world? At the International Die Cast X Expo you’ll get special giveaways, check out the hottest show and custom cars and be able to buy one-of-a-kind diecast models.

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RCX.com Enter discount code MAN11 for $5 off regular admission!

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HOw TO

Detailing anD weathering Adding realism with paint chips and wear

text anD photoS by lyle VaSSer

In the December 2010 issue, I showed how I did simple weathering techniques using basic latex paint. My friend Dave Reid commissioned me to paint his giant-scale SNJ Texan, and it has been the example for these ongoing how-to articles. I weathered and detailed the Texan, which I painted in early U.S. Navy markings. As I mentioned in the earlier article, a little goes a long way, so always use a light touch when dirtying up your scale models. How much weathering should you do? Always consult your reference photos, and stop when you think you’re halfway there. This time, I show some other techniques that really bring a scale plane to life. Each technique by itself is very effective and, added together, really produce astonishing realism.

Simulating flaking paint

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fter getting the base paint just right and you’ve done basic weathering, a typical worn look can be made by simulating paint chips flaking off. Getting the paint to look like it is flaking off is

"Steel"-colored paint and coarse steel wool make great-looking "chipped" paint.

the wings take a beating. Flaking and chipped paint is a must.

not very easy. Some use a silver undercoat and then sand off the paint over it to give a worn look. To me, however, aircraft paint doesn’t flake off smoothly unless there’s a consistent wearing agent such as feet on walkways and arms resting on window rails.

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I think to get the most realistic paint flakes, you have to paint them on. I use two techniques. The first works well for very small chips in the paint, and it produces a very random effect. Dip plain old steel wool (I use a coarse grade) in a little puddle of steel-colored paint (not silver!). Silver is too


worldmags bright; you want the chipped-off area to look like it has been there a while. Steel paint looks more like oxidized aluminum and appears more natural. After dipping the steel wool in the paint, pat it on a piece of cardboard or cloth to remove the excess. Then pat the steel wool on the surface you want to look like chipped paint. Vary your angle, and rotate the steel wool to keep it random. The second technique is a little more time-consuming and more tedious. I use a â&#x20AC;&#x153;linerâ&#x20AC;? brush and steel enamel model paint and just paint the chips on. The fine liner brush adds to the linear effect that looks scribbled along the leading edges of control and flight surfaces. Again apply the paint in a random pattern. Just keep in mind the effect that may be happening on the aircraft. On the leading edges of the cowl and wings, the paint will chip more with the airflow due to rocks, grit, bugs and so on that knock the paint loose. On fuselage side panels, the paint chips on edges and runs along the panel seams. Hatches get more wear, so around those edges the

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This color documentation photo shows how really worn out the wing walks can get.

Be sure to add a small amount of chips to your tail feather's leading edges.

paint flakes, and sometimes the panels get thrown on the ground and get scratched. Also, paint peels away from rivet heads, so to get that effect, you have to paint steel

around rivets too. Keep all this in mind, and apply your paint with a purpose, but also keep it random. When in doubt, check your reference.

Wing walks

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ow, to make the Texan look like it has been used by many flight cadets, you have to add some severe wear on the wing-walk areas near the fuselage and cockpit entries. On the full-size aircraft, these were coated with a nonskid coating, much like rough sandpaper, to prevent the skyward-bound aviators from slipping and falling off the wing. I found a photo of a Texan that I thought would be very interesting to duplicate its worn wing-walk areas (see at left). Note how the nonslip coating has peeled off from use. After masking off the basic rectangle shape of the wing-walk area, I tore little bits of masking tape and placed them in a random fashion to simulate the wear patterns shown in the photo.

Duplicate the wing-walk pattern with bits of masking tape.

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How To Detail and Weathering

About the Author

I mix microballoons into my “wing walk” paint to produce a convincing, non-slip surface.

RC modeler and warbird lover Lyle Vasser has been hooked on aviation all his life. He received the “bug” from his father while watching him fly one-channel models in the 1960s. Lyle has been flying RC aircraft for over 30 years, and is also a fullscale pilot. One facet of the hobby that has always been interesting to Lyle is how to make pilot figures in scale models look lifelike. After being frustrated by the unrealistic pilot figures on the market, he decided to make his own, striving to create pilot figures that are just as detailed as the models they go in. He owns a company called Best Pilots (bestpilots.typepad.com), that arguably offer the best pilot figures in the hobby. The inset shows one of Lyle’s pilot figures in a scale P-47 Thunderbolt.

Mixed with the microballons, I use a brush to apply the Liquitex paint to the wing.

Here, the dark non-slip has been applied, but it still needs weathering.

I created a 1⁄5-scale nonslip coating because I didn’t think sandpaper glued to the wing would look very convincing. I used Liquitex acrylic paint, which is fairly thick, and mixed it with microballoons. The microballoons give the paint a grainy texture that looks just right. Add enough microballoons so the Liquitex is saturated with them, and then just paint the mixture on with a brush. Of course, you can’t just paint the wing walk a deep rich black and leave it that way. It doesn’t look real! To weather it down a little, I airbrushed a light gray wash over the black. After that had dried, I wetted the surface down and applied a good dose of Model Master acrylic “leather” paint, rubbing it back and forth to spread the 80 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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A good dose of Model Master acrylic “leather” paint has been applied.


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How To Detail and Weathering color out while the paint was still wet. I dabbed at it with a paper towel very lightly to break up the streaking and give a little “pitter-patter” effect. Mud and grime collects on the surface; it then gets ground in by people walking on the surface. Then with rain and airstream, it dissolves and flows back and against the fuselage. This subtle mottling of the various colors replicates the color and appearance of the actual wing walk. The effect is subtle, but very effective. When you’ve finished, pull away the masking tape and see how beat-up and realistic the wing walk looks! The last photo really shows the grain and peeled effect very well. The blue paint under the nonslip coating will eventually look like it has worn down to the aluminum, but that can be done later. Next time, I’ll be showing how to do rivet details and airbrushing exhaust streaking to the fuselage. Until then: practice, practice, practice. 

Rub the “leather” color in with your fingers and really spread it around while it's still wet.

Here are the finished results. Pretty “beat up,” ’eh?

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A little bit of steel color makes the wear look like it has reached the aluminum wing skin.


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JS Models

3D FRENZY A .50-size machine with optional flybarless control system

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I THINK THIS COMBINATION OF HELICOPTER AND CONTROL SYSTEM IS GOING TO TAKE ME TO A NEW LEVEL IN MY FLYING CAPABILITIES worldmags


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WoRDs aND PHoTos By PAuL TRAdeLIus

It wasn’t long ago that all helicopters came with flybars and paddles as standard equipment. When several of us tried to go flybarless years ago, specially weighted rotor blades were needed and performance was severely limited, so this control option never really caught on for general flying. In just the last few years, however, advances in control electronics have made going flybarless not only practical, but advantageous! Now we are seeing more helicopters specifically designed for this advancement in helicopter performance and control. Along with both improved stability and agility, there are also less rotating parts, resulting in less rotor system drag to provide more power and longer flight times. A few months ago, A Main Hobbies announced their new JS Models TZ-V2 3D Frenzy helicopter kit. The Frenzy is a unique helicopter in that it’s offered in two different versions. For those who prefer the traditional method of control, they have the “flybar” Frenzy, but a “flybarless” version is also available. Both kits have the same

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great features, including a narrow-profile fuselage and main frame, which helps reduce drag for smoother, faster flight in all directions. The Skookum Robotics SK-720 Flybarless System will allow you to dial up the levels of stability and control that you desire to perfectly match any flying style, from the wildest 3D to smooth and stable flight for sport or scale models.

UNIQUE FEATURES The Frenzy is anything but a true kit. Building is fast and easy as many of the subassemblies come preassembled at the factory. As you can see in the photo, the Frenzy is more of an “almost-ready-to-fly” helicopter, with major sections wrapped in plastic and ready to assemble into the finished helicopter. I really like this because it not only makes building quicker, but also because the novice pilot is ensured everything is aligned and square, making the Frenzy performance ready on its first flight. Other features include G-10 side frames that are both strong and lightweight and have metal three-point, main shaft-bearing mounts and metal head and main blade

SpecificationS Name: 3D Frenzy Model TZ-V2 Manufacturer: JS Hobbies Distributor: A Main Hobbies (amainhobbies.com) Type: .50-size glow helicopter Rotor diameter: 53 in. Height: 17 in. Length: 49 in. Weight: 8 lb. Radio req’d: 6-channel Price: $220 (flybarless or regular)

HigHligHtS Major parts are factory assembled ++ + Strong and lightweight parts for max 3D maneuvering

Easy setup of the SK-720 ++ + Ability to quickly and easily change flight performance

APRIL 2011 85


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FLIGHTTEST

These are the major assembled components of the 3D Frenzy as it comes out of the box. Note clutch, fuel tank and engine mount are already installed. All pushrods are assembled to the proper length, and even the engine mounting screws are in place. This is certainly more of an ARF than a kit.

grips. The swashplate can be configured for either 120- or 140-degree CCPM control, and push-pull linkages are used on all cyclic servos. The engine mounting block is made from CNC-machined aluminum, and the forward mounted engine design allows easy access to the glow plug. Other features include a large front-mounted radio compartment, a vibration-isolated fuel tank that is easily removed for maintenance, a low-maintenance, belt-driven tail rotor and a beautiful, prepainted white fiberglass canopy with decals. Although flybarless helicopters offer many distinct control advantages, they lose much of the inherent stability of the flybar. In fact, without the recent advancements in electronic stabilization systems, it would be impossible to fully benefit from flybarless control. The advanced features of the SK-720 allows it to replace the tail gyro,

GEAR USED Radio: JR 12X transmitter (jrradios.com), Hitec HS-7940TH servos (hitecrcd.com), Duralite A123 2300mAh 2S1P LiPo (duraliteflightsystems.com), Skookum Robotics SK-720 w/ 2 JR satellite receivers (skookumrobotics.com) Engine: YS 56 SR (ysengines. net) and MP5-50 Muscle Pipe (curtisyoungblood.com) and Perfect Regulators remote fail-safe switch Rotor blades: Edge 603mm Premium CF Flybarless and Edge 95mm tail rotor (amainhobbies.com) Fuel: Byron Rotor Rage Master’s Blend 30% (byronfuels.com)

In the Air Initial flight tests were flown using novice settings to evaluate the stability of the Frenzy. It was obvious from the first flight that this is a winning combination of helicopter and control system. Control was precise and predicable, even on a windy day. Small changes to the SK-720, combined with increased head speeds, brought out the full 3D potential of the Frenzy. GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE Stability: This is where the combination of Frenzy and SK-720 really shine. The easy to understand and use SK-720 allowed the taming of every flight parameter directly resulting in increased stability in all three axes. A lower rotor speed of about 1500rpm and push-pull servo control gave the Frenzy a smooth and positive feel to the controls, even on windy days. Forward Flight: Leaning out the YS 56 SR increased the rotor speed to 1800rpm and, combined with the specially designed Edge flybarless rotor blades, the Frenzy took on a whole new character. It moved when and where I wanted, but yet stayed “locked in” without a control input, making forward flight very smooth and predictable. Many helicopters have a tendency to pitch up in fast forward flight, but not this one. I took my laptop to the flying field with me, and changes to the SK720 were quick and easy to dial in the Frenzy just the way I like it.

Normal

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Aerobatics: Although I have been using the name Frenzy throughout this article, the full name is the 3D Frenzy, which gives you a clue as to what this helicopter is all about. Cranking up the SK-720 parameters to the 3D mode and leaning on the YS 56 SR with Byron’s Rotor Rage Master’s Blend 30% Heli Fuel brought the 3D out of the Frenzy. Forget about tame and gentle maneuvering. Slamming the sticks from end to end brought out the power and precise feel of the Hitec HS-7940TH servos and allowed me to beat the Frenzy like a rented mule. My flying style is smooth and precise, but the Frenzy/SK-720 combination, together with a zero-slop tail rotor, brought out the wild side in me to try more aggressive maneuvers “up close and personal”—and I liked it! I think this combination of helicopter and control system is going to take me to a new level in my flying capabilities, and you will be hearing more about it in my “Rotor Speed” column in this magazine.

86 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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THROTTLE CURVES


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FLIGHTTEST

worldmags JS MODELS 3D FRENZY

The tail rotor is multiple ball-bearing supported and completely slop-free for superior tail control. Note the light and strong housing for the smooth belt drive system. Even the tail fin is carbon fiber for strength and lightweight.

mechanical flybar and receiver in your helicopter while including features like flight-logging with playback and optionalself leveling of the helicopter in flight (see sidebar “Flybarless Flight Control.”)

CONCLUSION A flybarless helicopter cannot be evaluated by itself because so much of its performance depends on the electronic control system used for guidance. The combination of the 3D Frenzy and Skookum SK720 proved to be a perfect combination of helicopter design, attention to detail, and ease of assembly combined with stability and performance. Whether you are an “old-school” pilot who has flown nothing but flybar helicopters or are completely new to the flybarless generation, the Frenzy and setup wizards of the SK-720 will allow you to get your feet wet with a very mild-handling helicopter. Then, as your flying skills improve, setup changes to the SK-720 can turn the Frenzy into a 3D aerobatic wonder. 

The SK-720 Flybarless Control System is smaller than most receivers but is huge on performance. One JR satellite receiver is in the nose, and another is on the side of the main frame. Note the heat sink bands around the Hitec HS7940TH ultra-performance coreless servos.

Flybarless Flight Control The SK-720 is ideal for pilots from beginner to 3D expert. For 3D pilots, the SK-720 integrates the yaw and cyclic gyros, giving rock-solid piro maneuvers and tail control that benefit from knowing what the collective stick is doing. For the novice flier, or those learning 3D, the SK-720’s built-in, three-axis accelerometer means you can set it to self-level, like a coaxial heli. This feature can be turned on full time, dialed down as your skills improve, or set to bail you out at the flick of a switch. Plus, in the wind, a flybarless helicopter has greater stability than a helicopter with a flybar, has fewer parts and is easier to repair. Small 450-size helicopters become as stable as their .90-size big brothers. For all pilots, the SK720’s built-in flight logging lets you record and playback your flights in a simulator-like display on your PC (like a blackbox recorder). Both the helicopter’s motion and the stick positions are displayed, letting you learn exactly where you can improve your skills. The playback software can also be used as a diagnostic tool, warning you of voltage dropouts and high vibration while marking where in the flight they occurred. For larger helicopters, the SK-720 includes a heavy-duty external power bus that’s good for 25 continuous amps and helps to isolate vibration from the gyro itself. The bus allows for high- and low-voltage servos and includes 16-gauge cable to connect directly to a 2-cell LiPo battery. The PC software guides you through setup and lets more advanced users fully tune their machine for max performance. It’s easy to upgrade the firmware at home so you can benefit from any future product improvements with just a click of your mouse. Future upgrades will include a GPS accessory for more precise xyz positions in the flight logs. It costs $424.95.

Paul poses with the flybarless 3D Frenzy in the foreground and the flybar version in the background. Both have similar flight characteristics, but the flybarless version uses the SK720 and Edge flybarless rotor blades. 88 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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This is the power package right out of the box. Note the enlarged cooling fins and three-needle carb on the massive YS56SR engine. Matched with the beautiful and highperformance MP5-50 Muscle Pipe and Bryon Rotor Rage Master’s Blend fuel, this is the most powerful performance package available in its class.


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conSTrucTion by RIcHARd dERy

Fun Scale Monocoupe 70

T

An early classic with park flyer performance “The ulTimaTe plane for the private

flyer,” so read the advertisement for the Velie monocoupe in the late 1920s. “a dehydrated version of the Spirit of St. Louis,” is how the late Cole palen, founder of Old Rhinebeck aerodrome, described his. Growing up in Connecticut, i had watched many of palen’s wonders take to the sky, but i had forgotten about this little gem. i was quite taken with the radial engine protruding from the once-polished aluminum cowl. Despite the ungainly tripod landing gear of the 113, i could still make

out the classic lines of a true champion. i also found a 3-view drawing of a monocoupe 70. unlike the 113, the 70 had a more conventional landing gear complete with spoke wheels. “Wouldn’t this make an interesting RC subject?,” i thought. When i designed the monocoupe, i wanted something large enough to fly scale-like, but small enough to accommodate park flyer hardware and components. i estimated the flying weight to be under 30 oz. and decided to build the airplane around e-flite’s park 450 outrunner motor

The author Richard Dery shows off the nicely detailed Monocoupe. It makes a great first building project.

SpeciFicaTionS Wingspan: 48 in. Length: 32.5 in. Wing area: 384 sq. in. Flying weight: 28-30 oz. Motor: Park 450 BL outrunner Speed control: 20amp brushless Radio: 4-channel (ailerons rudder, throttle, elevator) Prop: 9x6 electric prop battery: 3S 11.1V 1800-2100mAh LiPo

conTrol THroWS Ailerons: ± 3⁄8 in., 15% expo (low); ± 5⁄8 in., 25% expo (high) Elevator: ± 3⁄8 in., 15% expo (low); ± 5⁄8 in., 25% expo (high) Rudder: ± 1 1⁄4 in.

with a 48-inch wingspan. This airplane makes for an ideal Sunday afternoon sport flyer. Whether it’s on the ground or performing big round loops and slow rolls, the monocoupe’s spoked wheels and dummy engine always to turn a few heads.

Tail feaThers The tail feather outlines are laminated from thin strips of water-soaked balsa wrapped around a foam template. Soak three balsa stringers in warm water for a few minutes. next, run a bead of elmer’s Glue down the length of the stringers and stack them up. lightly squeeze them together and wipe away the excess glue. Slowly work the wet stringers around the template and use lots of pins around the outside. let them dry overnight and then remove from the template, pin the outside frame to the plans 92 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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and add the straight pieces accordingly.

Wings Though the full-scale ’Coupe didn’t have dihedral, the model’s wings are built-up with ¾-inch dihedral at each wingtip. Since the wing is built in three sections, you can decide whether or not to add dihedral when you add the plywood spar doublers to the wing root. I drive the ailerons with one servo mounted in the center section

of the wing. You could also use two submicro servos (one in each panel forward of each aileron). Build the center section first. Note that the center section is built in two pieces. The front piece gets added to the fuselage later. Cut a piece of 1⁄16-inch balsa sheet to size and mark the rib locations. Pin this to the plans, and build the center section right on top of it. Glue the plywood doublers to the front of ribs W-12 and W-13, and pin to the plans. Glue the

After the outlines have been laminated, pin to plans and add cross pieces.

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balsa block trailing edge in place, and add rib W-1 and four W-2 ribs. Leave a 1⁄8-inch gap between this assembly and the front assembly. Shim the balsa sheet under the leading edge to meet the slight up curve of the W-8 ribs. Glue ribs W-14 and W-8 in place. Add the leading edge then remove from the plans and add rib W-9 to the underside of this assembly, and set aside. Sand the center section’s trailing edge to shape. Make one left and one right wing

Wing center section. Note music wire aileron links and cut-out for servo. 10a. Aileron servo and links installed. Also note the wing struts folded down to lay flat against the wing. APRIL 2011 93


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FUN SCALE MONOCOUPE 70 strut anchor rib by gluing W-10 and W-11 to one rib W-5 for each side. W-11 should be sandwiched in the middle. After the wing is covered, the struts will be hooked to small wire loops that get epoxied into the W-10, W-11 and W-5 sandwich. Now pin the front and aft spars to the plan along with the trailing edge. Test fit ribs at different locations along the spars to make sure the spacing between the spars and trailing edge are correct. Glue all the ribs in place. I like to start with the strut anchor rib assembly, just to make sure I get that in the right location. Build the ailerons and wing panels together, leaving a slight gap

The Monocoupe incorporates straightforward framing throughout requiring intermediate building skills.

To order the full-size plan, visit AirAgeStore.com

between the aileron leading edge and the trailing edge of the wing. Add the leading edge and the W-7 wingtip at this time. Note the angle of W-7 shown in the front view of the wing. Remove from the plan and separate the ailerons from the rest of the wing. Sand the trailing edges to shape. Now you can block the wingtips up to the desired dihedral and join to the center section. You will want to get a good glue joint between the spars and the doublers. Trial fit things first. Sand and adjust if needed and then sand a bevel to the leading edge of the ailerons, and cut slits for hinges, but do not glue hinges in place until after covering.

The finished engine block with cylinders is mounted to the airplane with dowel pins and small magnets or screws. Note the snug fit around the E-flite 450 outrunner. Do not glue the cylinders until after the engine block has been painted or covered with UltraCote. 94 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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FUSELAGE The fuselage is made up of two side panels built directly over the plans and joined together in a box fashion with bulkheads and cross members. Start by pinning F-4 to the plans and cut the two hard balsa or basswood longerons to length. Place all the uprights, including the diagonals, as shown on the plans and let dry. Place waxed paper over the first side panel then build the second panel directly over the first to ensure a perfect match. Remove from plans and add F-5 doublers to outside of panels. Refer to the cross-section in plans and

Note the cutout for the servo tray in the cabin as well as the micro pushrod links for the elevator and rudder. Also note the 3 â &#x201E;32-inch music wire cabin support/wing mount.


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The Marvelous Monocoupe

Clayton Folkerts, a self-taught airplane designer who went on to design championship-racing planes in the 1930s, designed the first Monocoupe for Don Luscomb in 1927. ATC #22 was awarded to this design by the newly formed aeronautics branch of the U.S. Department of Commerce, and the Monocoupe 22 had arrived. Unfortunately, engine problems plagued this design until a suitable engine was eventually found in the Velie M-5, a 5 cylinder radial of about 55 horsepower. It was with this powerplant that the little airplane became the Monocoupe 70. A partnership was then formed with The Velie Motors corporation, and Mono-Aircraft Inc. was born. Phoebe Omlie, a contemporary of Amelia Earhart, went to work for the Mono Aircraft Company, and in 1928 set the female world altitude record at an altitude of 25,400 feet. Then, after competing in numerous air races in her Monocoupe, Omlie was asked to fly for Franklin Delano Roosevelt around the country in his campaign for president. She went on to Washington after the election as the Special Adviser for Air Intelligence to the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. More than 350 Monocoupe 70s-113s were produced between 1927 and 1929, but like all great airplanes, the little monoplane was not without its faults. None other than Charles Lindbergh reportedly donated his Monocoupe to Lambert field in St. Louis because of its tendency to ground loop. sand doublers down to the longerons at top and bottom. With a straight-edge and hobby knife, score the doubler and frame at the two locations shown on the plan. Carefully “crack” and bend the two side panels and then once the proper bend is achieved, apply CA glue into the cracks to harden. Sand a bevel to the inside of the panels at the tail where the two panels will be joined. Glue the cabin floor to the inside of one side panel. Add bulkhead F-6 and glue the other fuselage side to the floor and bulkhead. Keep everything square and join the two sides at the tail. Add the cross members to the top and bottom then make the landing-gear blocks from hardwood with a center groove to receive the music wire. Add blind nuts for the wing struts’ attachment screws to the rear block. Glue landing-gear blocks in place and then add doublers to the window frames to come flush with the F-5 side doublers. Add F-8 pieces to the front. Bevel the back edge to

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lean the piece into the F-7 cabin floor. The light plywood engine mount F-1 can now be added. 2-3 degrees down thrust should be added here. Add F-2, F-3 and front the stringers. Sheet this section then fill in the bottom of nose with a balsa block from the front landing gear block forward and sand to shape. Bend two pieces of music wire for the cabin support/wing retainer then glue F-11 in place on top of the cabin. Trial fit the wire supports before gluing in place with F-11. Block around the cabin supports inside the fuselage with scrap balsa and epoxy. Take your time to bend the wire landing gear accurately or your model may not track straight on takeoff. Crooked landing gear could also increase the chance of a ground-loop on landing. Don’t let the spoke wheels and dummy engine scare you! AerodromeRC (aerodr omerc.com) offers spoke wheel kits in a number of different sizes. Their 33⁄8-inch wheel kit is perfect for this project. As for APRIL 2011 95


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Item #UES10; $6.99; 100 pages This Model Airplane News special issue showcases high-performance electric plans, ducted-fan jets and helicopters. From getting the most out of your programmable speed control to setting up multi motors to choosing the right battery pack and more, Ultimate Electrics delivers!

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X0411A SPORT-SCALE MONOCOUPE 70

Designed by Richard Dery, this lightly loaded sport-scale classic monoplane is easy to build and a great calm weather flyer. It is very scale in outline and has plenty of power for its size. It is modeled after the full-size plane located in the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome Museum. Wingspan: 48 in.; Length: 32.5 in.; Power: Park 450 BL outrunner; Radio: 4-channel; LD: 2; 2 sheets. $21.95

*The offers in this advertisement are for a limited time and subject to change. Quantities are limited. Sale applies to full priced items only and does not include print subscriptions or currently discounted items


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the dummy radial engine, I used a Williams Brothers 1⁄8-scale RC Radial Realism Engine available from Tower Hobbies (towerhob bies.com). Discard the center cowl ring then cut about a ¼-inch off the bottom of each cylinder and glue them to an engine block/cowl assembly. Taking the time to add these details will greatly enhance the overall appearance of your Monocoupe, and is well worth the effort.

Covering and Finishing A light model is most desirable, but some lightweight materials are not as strong as others, and may be more inclined to wrinkle. I’ve found UltraCote to be the right choice for me and used black and yellow, which proved highly visible in the air. There are many color schemes from which to choose. I created the Monocoupe graphics in Adobe Illustrator, which I put on a disk and brought to RC Hobbies and More, a local hobby shop in Winsted, CT. The owner Erwin Atchison cut the graphics with his vinyl sign cutter.

in the air I flew the maiden flight with low rates and exponential dialed in to my Spektrum radio. Don Button, a fellow member of the Central Connecticut Radio Control Club (CCRCC), made the test flight while I took pictures. At a bit over 3⁄4 throttle the ’Coupe was aloft in just over 25 feet and climbing steadily. A few trim adjustments were made to the rudder and ailerons to achieve straight and level flight in the gentle 5mph

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breeze. With a great feeling of satisfaction, I watched my little black and yellow Monocoupe float effortlessly through the evening sky. After a few low passes for the camera and with a slight bump and short roll out, the flight came to a very happy ending. Don remarked that a good amount of rudder was needed to make coordinated turns. In reality, I’m quite certain the full-scale ship required a good amount of rudder as well. A few days later, on a warm Saturday morning, it was my turn to fly the ’Coupe. At about 3⁄4 throttle and 30 feet of runway, I eased back on the elevator and found her climbing briskly. I cut the power slightly and found the Monocoupe to be a very pleasant airplane to fly. I increased power and tried a loop from level flight with full power. Slow rolls required a bit of down elevator as it goes inverted. I also found it helpful to start the roll with the nose pointed slightly up in a bit of a climb. A good slow roll took a little practice, but was very pretty and rewarding. This airplane has a lot of drag and needs some power for landings. A dead-stick landing may result in more of an arrival than a nice smooth landing. The spoke wheels are fairly strong, but I recommend “greasing” this airplane in as smooth as you can so as not to damage the wheels. The model has no tendency to nose over in short grass, thanks to the large wheels being placed well ahead of the center of gravity. All in all, the Monocoupe is a very pleasing airplane to build and fly, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.  APRIL 2011 97


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MZ0104 ARF/O.S. 46AX Engine 3 PAY $84.66 $253.98 MZ0105 ARF/Mtr/ESC Combo .3 PAY $94.33 282.99 MA1011 GP/EP ARF 52.5” .........2 PAY $54.99 109.98

Top Flite® Cessna® 182 Skylane® GP/EP ARF

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MA1017

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MZ0115 .60 ARF/O.S. FS-91 II Surp ..$217.66 MA1013 .60 ARF .60-.91,64.5”.............$116.66

ASW-28

$73.33 $

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Heli-Max® Axe™ CPv3 EP RTF

$

1

Requires radio and 3 PAY engine or motor, MZ0111 Giant Scale ARF/DLE-55cc $322.66 $967.98 ESC and batteries. MA1012 Giant Scale ARF 86” ............$193.33 579.99 Wingspan: 70 in. MZ0114 .60 ARF/O.S. 61FX Engine ...$176.66 529.98

SkyFly 2

$133.33 Requires radio, engine or motor, ESC and batteries. Wingspan: 81 in.

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$53.33

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All include a 2.4GHz radio, motor, ESC and battery. Wingspan: (Cessna®: 35 in); (Cub: 36 in); (SkyFly™ 2: 42 in.); (SkyFly Max: 47 in.)

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• Prices Good thru February 28, 2011

© 2010 Tower Hobbies® - 1011172


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MA1115 Triton EQ AC/DC Charger ....... 3 PAY $43.33 MA1116 Triton2 EQ AC/DC Charger ..... 3 PAY $66.66

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Flight Technique BY JOHN GLEZELLIS | ILLUSTRATIONS BY FX MODELS & CHROME CITY STUDIOS

The Avalanche 4 simple steps to this impressive move

Even if you don’t aspire to be a competition pilot, you can learn from the fundamentals in this exciting competition move. For example, I’m sure a lot of you have performed a basic loop. In fact, the loop is the first aerobatic maneuver that many people perform. The avalanche is a basic loop, but has one addition to it. At the top of the loop, the pilot performs a snap roll. Since we’ve discussed the snap roll in the past, this is the perfect next maneuver to cover. Without further delay, let’s get the avalanche rolling!

3

Using up-elevator and aileron and rudder in the same direction, initiate a snap roll at the top of the loop (use high rate).

4

On the downward segment of the maneuver, switch back to low rates and reduce power. Complete the maneuver of the same altitude as you started.

2

Gently pull back on the elevator stick to begin a normal loop. Use low rates.

ENTER

1

Enter the maneuver straight and level and apply 90% power.

102 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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EXIT

5

Exit the maneuver straight and level on the same heading as you entered the maneuver.


worldmags

First things First When performing a graceful maneuver like the loop, focus your attention on geometry and smoothness. When executing the “loop” portion of this aerobatic maneuver, you want a low-rate setting that has about 12 degrees of elevator deflection, 30 degrees of rudder deflection, 25 degrees or more of aileron deflection and exponential on all surfaces. As a starting place, I recommend you use about 20% of expo and increase it until you are comfortable with how the airplane responds. Keep in mind that adding expo will soften the feel of how your servo reacts around neutral. Let’s now discuss the snap roll. The snap roll rotation should happen relatively fast, and if you find that your model “barrel rolls” around in rotation, you do not have enough control surface deflection and may need different rates on your radio. Most models will snap with about 15 degrees of elevator, 35 degrees of rudder and 35 degrees of aileron throw, but again, values differ from model to model. This serves as an overview, and fine-tuning your model will be up to you. As I mentioned earlier, use exponential and start with a value of about 35% on all control surfaces and then make any necessary adjustments. When I perform a maneuver like the avalanche, I keep my model on my low-rate settings for the “loop” portion of the maneuver. Then, when I want to initiate the snap roll, I switch to my high-rate setting. I perform the snap and flip immediately back to my low-rate setting for the rest of the figure. To simplify matters, I use flight modes, which means that all rates can be found on one switch!

the model constant. Also, you may need to make various rudder corrections to keep the model at the same distance from you (nine out of 10 times, you’ll need to apply right rudder due to motor torque). Keep the same radius constant throughout, and when the model is almost halfway through the loop, it should almost be at center, but inverted. This is a key moment to flip to your high-rate settings, or what I call my “snap rate condition.”

3

Initiate the positive snap roll by applying full left rudder, left aileron and up-elevator (if performing the snap to the left; otherwise, right rudder and right aileron with up-elevator). After one complete rotation is performed, neutralize inputs and immediately flip back to your low-rate setting and decrease the throttle to about 10% power.

4

Complete the second half of the loop. When the model is 75% done with the loop, it may be necessary to lower the throttle to idle. However, keep in mind that you may need to increase the power again as you are approaching center (the same point at which the maneuver began).

AvAlAnche overview Until you are familiar with this maneuver, I recommend you climb to an altitude of about 150 feet. Keep in mind, though, that this altitude will vary depending on the size of your model; this starting point is great for an electric model with a wingspan of about 50 inches. Once your altitude is established and your airplane is travelling in a manner that is parallel to the The Charger R/C Fuzion 3D runway, increase the throttle and begin a gradual (chargerrc.com) is a great aerobatic performer. loop right when the model passes the pilot (for future reference, the pilot’s position is called the “center”). Keeping the same radius, it’s critical to perform a snap roll at the top of the loop. If the loop began immediately after the model passed the pilot, the snap should be performed as the model is inverted over the top of the loop and at center. Once the snap roll is performed, the model continues the second half of the loop and exits at the same altitude at which the maneuver began. Now, let’s simplify the control inputs needed and divide this tiPs For sUccess maneuver into four steps: Now that you have learned how to properly execute the avalanche, let’s discuss a few key tips. If you are flying in an extreme Begin by climbing to a safe altitude and orienting your model headwind, you may need to gradually pull the model up to iniso it’s traveling parallel to the runway. The throttle will vary tiate the loop and then pull back harder once it has completed depending on your model’s power-to-weight ratio and the the first quadrant, as the wind may push you toward center faster size of your loop. If your model has a fairly equal power-to-weight than anticipated. After the snap is performed, you’ll need to pull a ratio, you’ll need to use maximum power, especially if you want to little harder on the elevator until you are about 80% done with the perform a larger loop. Increase the throttle to about 90% for your loop. You then ease off elevator to complete the maneuver as the first attempt, and wait until the model approaches center. model is directly in front of you. Whether you are flying in a headwind, which we just described, tailwind, or crosswind, it is critical If you’re using dual rates, make sure you’re on your low-rate for this maneuver to be centered and performed directly in front of setting. As the model is at center, gently pull back on the you. Make all necessary adjustments so the model always remains elevator control surface to begin the loop. Geometry is the at the same depth from you and that it reaches the cardinal points. key, and it’s critical to perform a perfect circle. With that being The avalanche is a neat maneuver to both fly and watch. Safe said, you may need to increase your throttle to keep the speed of flying and have fun! 

Geometry is the key, and it’s critical to perform a perfect circle

1 2 worldmags

APRIL 2011 103


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Maxx Products is your complete source for Electric Airplane Accessories

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Gearboxes - Assorted planetary and offset gearboxes to fit a variety of motors. Tools - Universal Pinion Puller. Universal Extracting Tool

1570 Switch - This simple switch temporarily disconnects BEC power to the radio system between flights.

• Micro wire (32AWG) extensions, Y-harness, switch harness for small electric airplanes, • Full line of Himax Brushless motors and gear motors, • Full line of ferrite motors and high performance cobalt & neodymium motors, Micro servos, micro receivers, and battery packs. Visit Our Website to See the Complete Line!

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ProductWatch

Mini-reviews of editors’ favorites

RealFlight G5 Expansion Pack 7 When it come to flight simulators, Knife Edge software has it covered. We are all fans of the RealFlight series (realflight.com) and they just keep getting better. Never wanting to settle with what they already have, RealFlight just introduced their new G5 Expansion Pack 7 ($33) and hit a home run. You get you an additional 13 airplanes along with three helicopters and also one VFO (vertical flying object). But what really changed the playing field are the new flight areas. The Alaskan float area has that real wilderness feel with boats on the dock and floating in the harbor, and you can almost feel the cool air as you fly in this living landscape. Another great feature is that if you don’t want to fly a floatplane from the water, you can fly almost any plane off the dock. Keep in mind, however, that landing isn’t so easy on the small area like the dock. Then you have the Area 81 obstacle course. To really enjoy this, just set your view camera on “Chase” and start tearing through the course. There are large floating metal tubes to fly through. But the surprise is that some of them have large blades turning in the tube, so enter at your own risk. I like the last flight the best: it’s a shooting gallery with 29-foot-tall chickens on a rail moving back and forth! Imagine, you take off and make a pass over the field to survey the situation, and then you push the nose down and take aim at the chickens, which blow up when you hit them. If you’re in the mood for an aerial target, look skyward to see a patrol of Sopwith biplanes circling. You pull back on the stick and climb up behind one to take aim with

your machine guns, fire a few rounds off and hit one, causing a great explosion. RealFlight has added such a great component here, that it really adds to what you can do with a flight simulator. But the planes are what we usually get this for and as usual, they have delivered big time. They give you several styles of plane to fly such as electric and turbine jets, sport models and 3D machines. I really enjoyed the SR-71 Blackbird. This plane has great detail and is a joy to fly. There is an electric all-foam paper airplane that is powered by an electric motor, which is cool to cruise around with and brings you back to your school days. The Aero Shrike Commander is an exciting plane to see, and I’m looking forward to trying my hand at power-off aerobatic flight. The 3D Hobby AJ Slick is a great plane that will perform whatever you throw at it, and the Yak 55 is a nice big 3D aerobat that’s perfect for IMAC practice. For me, the Aeroworks Ultimate 20-300 takes the cake. I am a huge biplane fan and the Ultimate is one of my favorites. It does the best high-alpha rolling circles hands down. It also does precision aerobatics wonderfully, and if you want to do IMAC or even pattern flying, this plane can do it all.

You can fly through even more great-looking scenery, including this Alaska float-fly background.

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And last but not least, if you’re looking for speed, you’ve got to fly the ElectriFly Evader EDF and Rifle. These two planes are recreated to very real standards and feel very close to flying the actual planes. For a challenge, try traveling through the obstacle course with these two! I highly recommend the G5 Expansion Pack 7; it will keep you entertained for hours. — Rocky McCarter

Kicking the plane into 3D mode right on the deck!


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FA-82B SPECIFICATIONS Cylinder type: AAC Displacement: .82ci Weight: 17.6 oz. Benchmark prop: 13x8 APC (apcprop.com) Prop range: 12x8 - 15x4 Rpm range: 2,000 - 12,000 Fuel used: Byron Rotor Rage 30% Heli blend (20% oil) (byronfuels.com) Price: $300

OPERATING TIPS

+ Never operate the engines with a lean carburetor mixture setting.

+ Readjust the poppet valves after

Saito FA-72B and FA-82B If power-to-weight ratio means anything to you, take a closer look at the latest offerings from Saito (saitoengines.com)—the newly redesigned FA-72B and the FA-82B. Both engines feature redesigned crankcase designs that add durability without sacrificing performance. The FA-82B, like the earlier A-model before it, still has the same mounting pattern as the older 72, and the FA-72B still fits in the same space as the older .56 engine did. Both of these popular 4-stroke engines have exceptional power output for their displacement, and are available in the standard silver aluminum finish (shown here) as well as the attractive “Golden Knight” version that features a classy black finish and gold valve covers. We test-ran both of the great engines, and they deliver what they promise. With their single-piece cylinder and head design, the original Saito 82A had outstanding power for its size and weight compared with other 4-strokes in its size range. Both feature true AAC (aluminum barrel, aluminum piston, chrome-plated barrel) cylinders with exacting tolerances. Without a separate cylinder sleeve, the ringed aluminum piston rides directly in the engine’s chrome-plated, aluminum cylinder barrel for more efficient heat dissipation— an important thing for any RC engine. Both engines produce exceptional power output for their size and weight, and like their A-model counterparts, they’re sure to become known for great performance and equally impressive longevity.

BREAK-IN With the excellent fuel draw of the Saito 82B, there’s no real carburetor priming

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needed. With the engine secured to a test stand, I fired it up and kept it running (for the first 10 minutes) below 4,000rpm to make sure everything was well lubricated. I then advanced the throttle to full power and richened the high-speed needle to bring the rpm down to about quarter power. Every few minutes I then increased and decreased the power using only the high-speed needle. After each tank, I let the engine cool for 10 to 15 minutes. After each successive tank, I slowly leaned the mixture out just slightly more than in the tank before. By the fourth tankful, I tuned the engine for maximum power and then backed off the revs by about 200rpm. Running four tanks of fuel in this way provides the recommended 40 minutes of break-in period, and by the fifth or sixth tank, I considered the engine fully broken in with excellent throttle response and a reliable idle.

Saito FA-82B Propeller Test APC 12x8 ................. 10,740 (break-in prop) 13x7 ............................................. 10,590 13x8 ............................................. 10,200 MASTER AIRSCREW 13x8 ............................. 9,750 (Scimitar) 14x6 .......................... 10,050 (4-stroke)

about an hour or two of run time.

+ Check all screws and nuts for tightness after break-in.

+ Make sure not to close off the

crankcase breather fitting at the bottom of the engine. It helps maintain proper lubrication for the cams, pushrods and poppet valves.

SAITO FA-72B If you’re looking for a 4-stroke to power your typical .60-size airplane, Saito’s new .72 fits in the same space as most .60s, and weighing in at 16.6 ounces, it’s one of the lightest engines in this 4-cycle displacement category. Just like with the .82, throttle transition, ease of starting, idle reliability and overall quality are excellent—just what we’ve come to expect with Saito engines.

PARTING SHOT Both engines have rather low vibration for single-cylinder designs. This is because of their relatively short stroke designs. Of course, the size of your propeller, the fuel you use and the quality and heat rating of your glow plug all contribute to an engine’s operational smoothness. Using both the stock Saito plugs and an O.S. F plug, both engines idle nicely right at about 2,000rpm with crisp transition when the throttles were opened. Beautifully designed and manufactured, Saito engines can be considered sound and valuable investments in the hobby. Only the best materials are used, and the engines represent the highest degree of quality and craftsmanship. — Gerry Yarrish

14x8 ............................ 8,040 (4-stroke)

APRIL 2011 109


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Classifieds BUSINESS Scale aviation dvds $9.95 and $14.95, 4 for 3, free shipping. 112 volumes to choose from. See www.ScaleAviationVideos.com or send for list: 11232 SE Vernazza Lane, Happy Valley, OR 97086-8799. let’S Go fly! The Blade CX2 & Repair. Introducing our Newest DVD Video. Check us out: www.rcintro.com [04/11]

QUaRteR-Scale fleet Model 2 BiPlane and 1/6 electRic fleet KitS. Concept Models, 6505 Urich Terrace, Madison, WI 53719; SASE for details; (608) 848-4108; email: conceptmodels@mailbag.com [03/11]

andeRSon’S BlUe BooK 5th edition: From 1911-2009. Over 230 pages; approximately 1600 engine listings; nearly 1000 pictures; pricing from MECA asking prices and eBay sold prices. Excluding 1/2A Engines in separate book. See Clarence Lee’s article Jan. 2010 pg. 97, and his write-up on 1/2A Book Jan. 2008 MAN. Order from website; andersonsbluebook.com or phone (705) 436-1970 [03/11]

PReciSion cUt KitS finest quality and most complete laser cut kits in the industry. Most kits in stock, ready for shipping within 24 hours. Visit our website for information and ordering. www.precisioncutkits.com Visa/mc/check and money orders accepted. International orders welcome. 63 Carlton Ave., Ewing, NJ 08618: larrypck@aol.com; 609-538-1388 and fax 609883-0926 [03/11]

fRee Knife MaKinG SUPPly cataloG! Visit www.knifekits.com or call 1-877-255-6433 today.

PRo-cRaft ModelS: (formerly Ohio R/C) plans, kits and accessories now available as Pro-line Aerobatic aircraft from Precision Cut Kits. See above ad for details. [03/11]

Model enGine SeRvice: All brands, sizes, types. E-Mail: WbillJensen@cs.com Website: www.bj-model-engines.com [03/11] laSeR cUt MUffleR/exhaUSt GaSKetS: For most 2 stroke side exhaust engines. Ultra High Quality, High Temperature, Flexible, Long Lasting. Sold in 2 Packs, Only $1.50 Shipping per order, ANY quantity! Dealer or Bulk Inquires Welcome, Email through web-site ICBIMProducts.com/gaskets [03/11] fRee fliGht KitS and SUPPlieS: TailSpin Aviation - offering laser cut kits, unique tools and supplies for the free flight enthusiast. Including props, rubber, winders, lube, bearings, tissue, and much more! Visit Our Online Store at www.TailSpinAviation.com/man. For Catalogue send $1.00 and SASE to, TailSpin Aviation, 301 East 11th. St., St. Elmo, Illinois 62458 [03/11]

Mcclain WinG coReS: Custom foam wing cutting. (509) 855-3463 www.mwcores.com mwcores@hotmail.com [03/11] PalMeR PlanS: are now distributed exclusively by PRECISION CUT KITS. See above ad for ordering information. [03/11] don SMith PlanS and acceSSoRieS: Now owned and distributed exclusively by Precision Cut Kits [03/11]

HOBBYIST SinGle SticK Radio: Pro-Line with receiver (6 CH), 1 Kraft Receiver (3 CH). Both in excellent condition. Also have receivers for Pro-Line and Futaba PLM radios. Tom (405) 2580237 [5/10]

vince MilleR PlanS availaBle aGain: From Calvin’s Classic Plans See www. calvinsclassicplans.com [09/10]

USed enGineS Wanted: pre-1970 preferred. T. Crouss, 100 Smyrna, West Springfield, MA 01089-1706; (413) 732-3859 11/11]

lee cUStoM enGineS. The original ringed K&B 61s are back in production and available again. Custom versions selectively handfit and assembled by designer Clarence Lee complete with muffler and PDP (Perry Direction Porting)—$127.50 plus $7.50 S&H. Your new or nearly new K&B 61 customized including PDP— $28.50 plus $7.50 S&H. Custom versions of all engines in the K&B line including Marine at list price less 40% plus customizing charge. Write for prices. C.F. Lee Mfg. Co., 10112 Woodward Ave., Sunland, CA 91040; (818) 352-3766.

$$$ foR enGineS: Buying and Selling!!! All quantities considered. Estates are my specialty – I charge 15% you get 85%. Bob Boumstein P.O. Box 390805 Omaha, NE 68139; email: bbhwc@cox.net Send $1 to get my list. [03/11]

leaRn to fly in five dayS, not five MonthS! We use interactive teaching methods that allow you to solo quickly. At our private field, you are the only one in the air. Aircraft, manuals and fuel furnished. Visit 2ndrcflightschool.com, or call Greg at (888) 780-6954. [03/11] StRiPPed GloW-PlUG thReadS. Repaired with stainless steel heli-coils. Two-stroke heads up to .90 displacement $15.00 postpaid. Over .90 and 4-stroke heads $17.50 p.p.; YS and Saito cylinders $20.00. Send head or cylinder only; if sending complete engine, add $15.00. We can also repair the stripped exhaust pipe threads in 110 MORE FROM THIS ISSUE AT MODELAIRPLANENEWS.COM

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your 4-stroke heads. Heli-coils are not available, but we can rethread for a special brass adapter for $28.50 p.p. Include header pipe if sending head. C.F. Lee Mfg. Co., 10112 Woodward Ave., Sunland, CA 91040; (818) 352-3766.

RATES: non-commercial—25 cents per word (no commercial ads of any kind accepted at this rate); commercial—50 cents per word (applies to retailers, manufacturers, etc.); count all initials, numbers, name and address, city, state, zip code and phone number. All ads must be paid for in advance. To run your ad for more than one month, multiply your payment by the number of months you want it to run. Deadline: the 1st day of the month, 3 months in advance, e.g., January 1 for the April issue. We don’t furnish box numbers, and it isn’t our policy to send tear sheets. Please make all checks payable to: Air Age Inc. SEND AD AND PAYMENT TO: CLASSIFIED ADS, Model Airplane News, 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA, or call (203) 431-9000.


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Model Airplane News Vintage Cover Posters Grab a piece of real aviation history with these striking color posters from the early issues of Model Airplane News. These full-size cover replicas from the 1920s through the 1950s feature artwork from some of the most well-known aviation artists of their time, including the world-famous Jo Kotula. Each poster measures 24x33 in. and is suitable for framing. Printed on high-quality non-tear stock. Item no. various; $44.95

Available at AirAgeStore.com


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ADVERTISER INDEX Airborne Models .......................................... 9

Micro Fasteners ....................................... 106

A Main Hobbies ................................... 16, 17

Miller R/C Products ................................. 111

Aero-Model Inc. ......................................... 49

Model Rectifier Corp. (MRC) ..................... 25

AirAgeStore.com ....................................... 96

Morgan Fuels ............................................. 81

Airtronics

................................................. 10

Multiplex .................................................... 59

Alien Aircraft Corp. .................................... 89

NitroPlanes.com ........................................ 67

Assurance R/C .......................................... 71

O.S. Engines .............................................. 22

Batteries America ...................................... 91

Phase 3 ...................................................... 19

Bob Smith Industries ........................... 95, 97

PowerMaster Fuels .................................... 11

Cal-Grafx ................................................. 106

Precision Aerobatics .................................. 65

Castle Creations ........................................ 47

RAm Radio Controlled Models ................ 106

Central Hobbies ......................................... 73

RC-Lights ................................................ 111

Chief Aircraft ........................................ 60, 61

RealFlight ..................................................... 5

Classifieds ............................................... 110

Rev Engines ............................................. 113

Cleveland Model & Supply ...................... 106

RTL Fasteners ......................................... 113

Desert Aircraft .......................................... 110

SKS Video Productions ............................. 89

DU-BRO .................................................... 55

Smart-Fly ................................................. 111

Dymond ..................................................... 83

Spektrum ................................................. 115

Eagle Tree Systems ................................. 111

Sullivan Products ....................................... 15

E-flite ........................................................... 2

The Wings Maker ................................. 9, 106

ElectriFly .................................................... 27

Thunder Power RC .................................... 51

Electro Dynamics ..................................... 107

Thunder Tiger .............................................. 4

FlightPower ............................................... 54

Tower Hobbies ..................... 98, 99, 100, 101

Florida Jets .............................................. 104

Tru-Turn Precision Model Products ........... 66

Flyzone ...................................................... 64

uThere, LLC ............................................... 41

Futaba ..................................................... 116

VCS Hobbies ........................................... 107

GreatPlanes ............................................... 23

Vogelsang Aeroscale ................................. 66

Heli-Max .................................................... 26

West Mountain Radio .............................. 113

Hitec RCD .................................................... 3

Windsor Propeller Co. ............................. 107

Hobby People ...................................... 42, 43

Winged Shadow Systems ......................... 91

HobbyKing.com .................................. 21, 50

XHeli.com .................................................. 87

HobbyPartz.com ....................................... 90

Zap Glue ............................................ 91, 113

HobbyZone ................................................ 13 Ikarus ............................................. 33, 34, 35 JR ................................................................ 7 Kangke Industrial USA, Inc. ..................... 112 Landing Products .................................... 107 Maxx Products Int’l, Inc. (MPI) ................ 105

This advertiser index is provided as a service to our readers. Air Age is not responsible for errors in or omissions of names or page numbers

MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS (USPS 533-470; ISSN 0026-7295) is published monthly by Air Age Inc., 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA. Copyright 2011, all rights reserved. Periodicals postage permit paid at Wilton, CT and additional offices. Canadian Post Publications Mail Agreement No. 40008153. SUBSCRIPTIONS AND BACK ISSUES: in U.S., call (800) 827-0323; Canada and elsewhere, call (386) 246-3323; fax (386) 447-2321; or go to www.modelairplanenews.com. U.S., $38.00 (1 yr.); Canada, $46.00, including GST (1 yr.); International $56.00 (1 yr.). All international orders must be prepaid in U.S. Funds; Visa, MC, Discover and AmEx accepted. EDITORIAL: send correspondence to Editors, Model Airplane News, 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA. Email: man@airage.com. We welcome all editorial submissions, but assume no responsibility for the loss or damage of unsolicited material. To authors, photographers and people featured in this magazine: all materials published in Model Airplane News become the exclusive property of Air Age Media Inc. unless prior arrangement is made in writing with the Publisher. ADVERTISING: send advertising materials to Advertising Dept., Model Airplane News, 88 Danbury Road, Wilton, CT 06897 USA; (203) 4319000; fax (203) 529-3010; sales@airage.com. CHANGE OF ADDRESS: to ensure that you don’t miss any issues, send your new address to Model Airplane News, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235 USA six weeks before you move. Please include the address label from a recent issue, or print the information exactly as shown on the label. For faster service, go to www.modelairplanenews.com and click on the customer service link. POSTMASTER: send Form 3579 to Model Airplane News, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235 USA.

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Finalapproach By GERRy yARRISH

Q

Look, Ma! No Radio!

Quadricopters are becoming very popular these days and with their onboard stabilization gyros, these hovering rc platforms are a representation of the latest in computer programming and electronic wizardry. the newest, and certainly the one that’s pushed the technology to the highest level, is the ar.drone. the ar.drone has one special feature that none of the rc quadricopters can even get close to—it doesn’t require a radio! developed by parrott (parrot.com), this amazingly stable air vehicle uses an iphone for control. the ar.drone produces its own WiFi signal that an iphone or other wireless communication device can link

up to. don’t have an iphone? no worries. the ar.drone can also be controlled by an ipad, or even a touch ipod. all you have to do is go to the app store and download the parrott’s app called “Free Flight.” once installed in your device, you can control the ar.drone by a simple press of the touch screen. the program also allows you to use tilt and pitch control where you press the start button and the ar.drone lifts off and hovers about two feet above the ground. then you press and hold a button on the screen and when you tilt you phone forward or back, the ar.drone follows suit! the ar.drone

is so stable that you can easily hover it in your living room or kitchen and maneuver it down a hall and through doors. its built-in gyro compensates for wind and it will hover over a very small area until you command it to move. the ar.drone is also equipped with two live-feed video cameras that send the vid

What’s wrong with this picture? Oh yes, no radio to be seen.

The on-board cameras feed live video to your iPhone.

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signal to your control device. one points forward and the other straight down looking below itself. the second camera is also part of the ar.drone’s stabilization system that actually looks at the ground and then finds something to zero in on to help tell it where it is. there are also on-board sensors that give the ar.drone flight information like altitude for amazing “station keeping” capabilities. if you are looking for something completely out of this rc world, the ar.drone from parrott just might be the answer. 


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MARCH 2011 115


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®

The #1 choice

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of the world’s choosiest pilots.

Internationally known turbine pilot David Shulman doesn’t have time to struggle with interference or a lack of programming power. When he isn’t performing at airshows or in scale competitions, he’s busy teaching students the finer points of turbine modeling. That’s why he uses the Futaba 14MZ FASST. Its Continuous Channel Shifting prevents same-channel signal conflicts. Patented Pre-Vision™ technology corrects incoming data errors. Dual Antenna Diversity delivers strong reception, without satellite receivers. The 14MZ looks out for itself. And it provides unequalled functionality. “Set-up and programming normally take a long time,” he says. “But the 14MZ is a dream. Dropping it into a new jet and setting it all up requires as little as 20 minutes, flap mixes and all.” No wonder Futaba FASST is the brand and technology preferred by more professional pilots around the world.

And if they choose Futaba...shouldn’t you?

futaba-rc.com/100h

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Model Airplane News April 2011  

Model Airplane News April 2011  

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