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59er9er's blog
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 10, 2014 @ 09:09 PM | 1,309 Views
Well I've flown the tricopter almost every day since I got it less than a week ago. The only day I didn't fly was the day the paint was drying.

Curious as to how it would perform with a point and shoot camera, I attached a cheap Kodak to it and recorded a short flight. I was pleased with the video from that first flight and thought how much nicer and sharper the video would be with a Canon SD1100 on there. Next day I attached the Canon and the recording was too shaky to use. I wondered what could have gone wrong so I checked everything over and on the second flight I turned off image stabilization. Same result. Put the Kodak back on, recorded a flight and it was as good as the first recording with the Kodak. Hoping to test it out with a GoPro to see what that looks like.

As far as flying this thing, I am really enjoying learning it's flight characteristics and all the challenges associated with a new aircraft.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 04, 2014 @ 03:58 PM | 1,216 Views
I now have a DSM2 Ladybird and a Simplcopter Tricopter which I traded my Radian Pro for. I didn't fly the Radian Pro as much as I would have liked to primarily because suitable flying sites are not close enough to home/where we spend our weekends. I've been flying the Night Vapor a whole lot and the micros. Looking for the next interesting challenge I decided to try out multirotors.

I had a lot of fun flying the Ladybird on its maiden in my living room today. Got the tricopter bound to my receiver, calibrated ACC on my dining table then took it outside to just hover around. Upon giving it sufficient power I noticed it wanted to roll and yaw. I need to figure out how to center the controls on the FC since using the trim tabs on the radio are not recommended. I can say that my son and I are really happy with this tri and are looking forward to taking it out to a large grassy field to dial it in. But not before getting in more Ladybird flights.
Posted by 59er9er | Dec 03, 2013 @ 02:24 PM | 2,182 Views
Had a fun flying session with my RP and JayY with his Radian. Cool, calm conditions and light lift at Lake Crabtree today. It was neat to see how well the Radian floats in the sky. Need to take advantage of days like this before it starts getting really cold.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Dec 02, 2013 @ 04:21 PM | 1,855 Views
I've been getting in as much stick time with the Radian Pro and I think I've got her dialed in beautifully. Yesterday while flying the RP at the local field a couple approached and asked me questions about the RP and why it was so much quieter than a 3D plane that someone was flying. After explaining to them the I only use the motor to climb to altitude then soar they became more curious. We of course got to talking about thermals so the lady naturally asked "how to do you find thermals." Just as I was telling her about looking at the wings for abrupt movement I hit a thermal about 30-50 feet about the field. My plans changed from landing to circling back to the thermal. I hit it again and began to circle and just like that the RP slowly gained altitude. The couple got a kick out of watching the RP circle without power and gain a few hundred feet in altitude. Great stuff, especially when you can share it with others.

Now onto the F-86. I bought this for my son, because it's the first RC plane that he wanted. When we took it out for it's maiden I told him I'd hand the radio to him as soon as it was at a good altitude. Well right after tossing the plane it immediately went into a nose up attitude and no amount of down elevator could get it level...it' practically hovered for a moment. It landed pretty softly without any damage. Next toss I used about 50% power and a more level toss. I was able to get it down field but it needed so much down elevator....Continue Reading
Posted by 59er9er | Nov 05, 2013 @ 10:27 AM | 2,260 Views
At my boss's suggestion, I took the day off yesterday. Winds were between 10 and 13 mph so I thought I'd see how the Radian Pro would perform in these winds. I used a 1600mAh battery to give her a bit more nose weight to penetrate the wind. Both take-offs were uneventful and she climbed well, of course with the wind blowing into her. But once at altitude I found it challenging to hunt for any thermal activity because I just couldn't get her where I wanted to get her. Both landings were hair raising and on the first flight I had to use power to climb out of a bad landing attitude. Good thing is that both landings were soft enough not to yield any damage. What I learned from this day is not to fly the Radian Pro in winds 10mph or greater. Can't wait for calmer winds, hopefully this weekend.

Happy flying.
Posted by 59er9er | Oct 28, 2013 @ 11:29 PM | 2,121 Views
Today I had the day off and it was a teacher work day so I invited my two older kids to come out with me. Got to fly everything that we brought out to the park...Firebird Stratos, Sukhoi SU-26M, UM Spitfire, Super Cub, and the Radian Pro. There was little to no wind and overcast. We enjoyed beautiful flights with no unscheduled landings. But the best flight was my 20 minute flight with the Radian Pro. i achieved that on a 30 second motor run then flying around until I found a thermal near some buildings with spanish tile roofs. I could have kept it up there longer but I got tired looking up so I had to bring her in. I was really shooting for 30 minutes or longer. There was an older gentleman ( a regular) with his DLG at the field and I told him about the nice thermal activity I was in but he doesn't launch his glider high enough to clear the trees to get to where I was at. I really love flying the Radian Pro, so much so that I'm considering thinning the fleet and just sticking to gliders.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Oct 18, 2013 @ 03:26 PM | 2,293 Views
It's been an interestingly busy week at work and that means it's important to stay fresh and motivated. What better way to do that than to do some lunchtime flying. Took the Spit and Radian out to the lake earlier in the week. The Spit couldn't fly higher than about 6 feet and batteries were only lasting 2 minutes. So I packed that up and launched the Radian on a cloudy but calm day. Flew two batteries for a total of about 33 minutes catching one nice thermal on the first battery. I just circled and circled at about 150 feet above ground and it maintained that altitude for 2 minutes. Though i didn't gain altitude it was still a kick to see it stay there. I actually caught that thermal on my approach to land so it was a nice surprise to be able to keep her up for a couple more minutes.

Earlier today I replaced the Spit's motor (only 3 months and maybe 40 flights old) with an older P-51 motor that someone had given me for free. I figured anything is better than the dying motor. Boy was I right. I walked over to my neighbor's house because they have a nice open front yards whereas mine is a pine forrest. It was fantastic to fly her with power again. I kept power between 50and 75% and just flew a tight circuit over the street and lawns so as to not alarm the neighbors. Can't wait to get the Spitfire out to the park again.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Oct 11, 2013 @ 03:15 PM | 2,469 Views
Well I can say I'm hooked on flying the Radian Pro. I haven't even gotten it fully sorted out yet but I can honestly say that I enjoy this type of flying. I'm close to getting it all sorted out with the two quarters added to the tail bring the CG back to about 75mm. Aileron trailing edges, especially the left one, aren't properly aligned with the rest of the trailing edges in each wing/flap and I dare not apply any more heat to fix it as I already got bit of alligator skin on the left aileron and still it's warped. But HH is sending me a new wingset so hopefully the new wings don't have the same issue.

In the 3 times I've flown the Radian, twice the winds were 5mph or below and one day it was 10mph and a bit gusty. It wasn't as enjoyable in the 10mph winds but I think a large part of that is due to where I typically fly which is surrounded by trees and right next to a lake. The other two times were a blast and I know it's only going to get better as I learn her characteristics better. I certainly enjoy dropping the flaps and using crow to slow her down and grease her in for a landing.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Oct 01, 2013 @ 10:54 AM | 2,115 Views
Last week I was fortunate enough to take two days off from work so I spent both mornings out at the local flying "field." First day was a bit breezy but I still enjoyed some solid flights with the Super Cub, micro Spit and Sukhoi. ROGs with the SCs are so nice and easy now that it has brushless power.

Second day out was much windier with gusts up to about 12 mph in my estimation. The SC was more of a handful but it was nice to see some speed on the downwind leg. Ended the day with a beautiful 3 point landing with no rollout. That's right, I had it on a very nice final approach, very scale and as close to 3 degress as I can tell. As I had started to flare a huge gust hit the SC so I gave it a little blip of power. Ground speed hit 0 and I reduced power and kept her nose up attitude and she floated down onto the grass on all three wheels nice and easy. I know I won't ever be able to replicate that landing but it was definitely one that I'll never forget. Though my original plan was to line her up for another ROG I decided to pack it up with that beauty of a landing.

On Sunday I learned that I could fly at Crabtree Park/Lake so I showed up with my SC about 30 minutes before the gates closed. Grass is pretty short so I was able to perform nice ROG and landings. A crowd immediately grew around me and questions started pouring in from sons and dads. I only got in a few short flights but I think I got some more people interested in this fun hobby of hours.

Ordered a Radian Pro yesterday with some funds I'm receiving from a bike sale so I'm looking forward to some soaring in the coming weeks. I'll post on it's maiden as soon as that happens, maybe as soon as this weekend.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Sep 08, 2013 @ 02:51 PM | 2,116 Views
Finally got my 11 year old back out to fly his Firebird Stratos yesterday. The only time he handed the radio over to me was during an aborted approach when my son spotted a gentleman and his dog near the final leg. I just climbed out over the trees and handed the controls back to him to complete the pattern. He nailed the approach and landing, much to the delight of a veteran Navy pilot (flew PBY Catalinas during WWII) that he clapped for my son. Those are the simple acts of kindness that go a long way to build up the confidence of young pilots.

I introduced myself to the older gentleman and offered my assistance in any way possible. He noticed me helping another guy with a depron F/A-18 so he asked if I could check out the flight surfaces of his Radian. I noticed that the control rods were connected to the innermost hole on the elevator and rudder and asked about it. He said he'd flown it once before and it seemed ok. I reset all the trims on his radio (elevator was at full down) then centered the rudder and horizontal stabilizer. I offered to hand launch the plane for him so he can stay comfortably seated. He took me up on the offer and as soon as it was at a safe altitude he said that the rudder was way too sensitive. He said it was difficult to fly. I offered to bring it down for him and he said "will you please?" A minute later it was safely on the ground and I moved that control rod to the hole farthest away from the rudder. Another quick pre-flight check and the Radian was off. He was delighted with the handling this time around.

My son had another battery so he got in another beautiful flight with a perfectly greased landing. I was so happy to see my son enjoying the experience and all it took was less yapping on my part. He's a big boy now.

Happy flying all.
Posted by 59er9er | Sep 03, 2013 @ 12:36 PM | 2,984 Views
First off, I'm sorry for originally titling my previous entry as "Spitfire maiden with axi brushless" when it was actually my Super Cub that I maidened. Guess I was thinking about the donor plane (Alfa Model Spitfire) where the motor and esc came from. I miss that Alfa Spitfire.

On to the SC. I added one washer in each of the upper mounting screws between the firewall and the motor mount. This made a big difference and I found it behaved more like I was expecting but at full power she still noses up quite a bit so I think I'll just need to set up a mix for down elevator whenever the throttle is pushed up beyond 75%. The SC was always fun to fly but now with ailerons and the brushless motor it's a totally different plane.

Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 31, 2013 @ 10:54 PM | 3,962 Views
I turned my easy flying gentle Super Cub into a rocket with this brushless conversion. On its maiden I set power at about 75%, gave her a toss and she immediately went into a vertical climb. I was so shocked i didnt react until she was above the tree tops. Wow! The rest of the time I flew her around on about 50% power which was plenty. I have to say it was nice pushing the throttle forward and seeing the SC pitch up and climb effortlessly, similar to how ive seen Fun Cubs climb. Landings were beautiful too. I thing I'll try ROG take-offs tomorrow because she actually taxis on grass now rather than just nosing over like before. Can't wait to get back out there tomorrow. I'll fly the SC one more time like this before adjusting the thrust angle a bit more downward to eliminate that nose up tendency because I want to see a bit more speed in level flight.
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 30, 2013 @ 10:53 AM | 2,947 Views
Well I've got the three blade prop on the Sukhoi, the SC's bruhless axi is mounted and the Spitfire needs nothing. Although I may put one of my GWS 5043 props on the Spit just to see how she flies. Hoping to pick up a new cowl and wing strut for the SC today so I can finally get her back in the air.

Have a great long weekend. Happy flying.
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 27, 2013 @ 01:32 PM | 2,599 Views
With the SC grounded waiting for the cowl and wing struts to come in and the Sukhoi waiting for a new prop adapter I've been flying the Spitfire a lot the past few days. I decided to slow things down and to fly it properly. What I mean by this is coordinated flight, practicing approaches and being able to fly an airfield traffic pattern. In practice this means holding attitude through turns as I enter the traffic pattern on the downwind leg as well as holding that altitude into the base leg. Then slowly reducing power and maintaining coordinated flight to avoid tip stalling the Spitfire. After a couple sessions I am extremely satisfied with how the plane reacts (and looks) in the air as I fly the pattern and enter a nice long and slow final approach. It's such a blast to fly an airplane in this manner, for me anyway. All it required was throttle management, learning the slow flight characteristics of the Spit and proper use of the rudder.

In the past I was excited to get just get my planes up in the air so I'd go through all the checks really quickly, then get the planes up in the air and just figure out what I'd do while in flight. Now I just take my time and I decide what I'm going to practic and I'm enjoying the whole experience even more. Can't wait to get the Super Cub back up in the air with it's AXI 2212/26 motor turning an APC 10X4.75 prop.

Happy flying.
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 20, 2013 @ 04:26 PM | 3,443 Views
After a couple flights with the Spitfire where it felt sluggish rolling to the right, I realized today that the tape holding the control wire to the right aileron was lifting slightly, which meant that when I wanted it to roll right the control wire would lift without the aileron moving up until I was almost at the max throw for right roll. I also experimented with sub-trim to try to bring the ailerons to neutral. Sub-trim combined with the tape issue resulted in difficult handling and ultimately flying into a tree. Luckily is was very low altitude and resulted in zero damage. Love these micros. I removed the sub-trim and pressed the tape down and flew for one more battery and I'm still noticing a bit of nose up attitude at anything above 75% throttle. I may tape a penny to the nose for the next flight.

Flew the Sukhoi again, this time with the stock prop. Boy is it slow with the stock prop. I still hear the rough running sound so I'll take her apart completed since the prop and prop shaft look in order. Gearbox and receiver appear to be mounted solidly as well so I'm not sure whats up but it doesn't sound good. It's still a blast to fly anyway and I know it'll be better once I sort it all out. Right now with the t-pin in the tail and battery all the way back I still have to give it quite a bit of up elevator trim to get her flying level. I'll get her all straightened out.

I've disassembled the SC and decided to go brushless since I have an axi motor laying around. It'll be a few days before I receive the replacement cowl and wing struts as well as the brushless motor mount. Looking forward to getting this plane fixed and flying again.
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 19, 2013 @ 11:55 AM | 5,182 Views
Fun day at the field yesterday, even though I ended performing an unscheduled landing with the SC. Had a couple fun and hairy flights with the SC when I first arrived at the field. the Cub has a pretty good roll rate now that I moved the pushrods to the outermost hole on the servo horns. It was nice being able to bring her in nice and slow on this windy day.

A few more flyers arrived at the field including a friend of mine with a micro Spit. We decided to put both of our Spits up at the same time and boy was that a blast watching both of them fly together. We didn't do any formation flying but it was still fun chasing each other around. Next up were our Super Cubs. He just acquired his and he upgraded to brushless. Mine still has the stock motor. We had them up flying slow and easy. I went inverted but I didn't have my elevator on high rates. I started to lose altitude even with the stick full forward so I gave her power but then I made the rookie mistake of pulling out of inverted father than rolling out. This resulted in it darting into the ground at a pretty good clip. Because the ground was soft from recent rains the prop actually bent back but not much damage to the foam. Also the cowling cracked so this is the first time I'm actually going to have to replace it and the prop. At least the spinner came out intact.

But the day didn't end there. I bought a Sukhoi Su-26m from someone at the field. This has the P-51 motor and gearbox and a GWS 5043...Continue Reading
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 13, 2013 @ 03:57 PM | 2,151 Views
Took the SC out yesterday to test ailerons after aligning horns with the aileron hinges. With differential I couldn't notice much of a difference from the ground which isn't a bad thing. It's still way more fun to fly the SC with ailerons. I'm thinking the motor is about to die because it just doesn't seem to have as much power as before.

Flew the Spitfire and went through three batteries. Two hand launches and one ROG. The Spit doesn't seem to have as much power as when I first got it. I don't know if it's me getting used to it or if something's up with the plane. I was doing rolls and playing with a little inverted flight but I couldn't get it to loop, which I was doing before. I charged the batteries up last night and will hopefully take her out again today after work.

On that one flight where I performed an ROG takeoff, she definitely flew more sluggishly with the mains on. I tried to grease the landing but she ended up nosing over ever so slightly. Good times.
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 02, 2013 @ 09:53 AM | 2,462 Views
I worked on the Super Cub's ailerons last night. I started by getting rid of the y-harness and plugging in the left servo to the Rx's aux port and the right servo to the ail port. Plugged it all up and WTH? Ailerons are moving in the same direction. I figured out that I just had to reverse the flap channel. Now they're moving in the correct direction. Next up was differential. I first set it to 50% but it seemed like was still moving the ailerons down quite a bit (likely because of the fact that I didn't align the horns with the hinge line) so I dropped it down to about 35% which looks about right. Next up, flaperons. I set the flaperons to come down about 15 degrees using the TLAR method. Added a click of down elevator to hopefully keep her attitude just about right for a nice low power decent. Can't wait to try out the new setup. I'll post pictures up in the next couple days.

In the meantime, here's an outdoor night shot of my radio with it's new backlight and the NV.Name: IMAG0895.jpg
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Posted by 59er9er | Aug 01, 2013 @ 05:30 PM | 3,100 Views
I took out the SC for a test flight. I am much happier with the ability to fly the SC with authority over roll, but I was experiencing some adverse yaw. This might be because I didn't line up the aileron horns with the aileron hinge, instead they're a bit aft. Nevertheless it was awesome because it almost felt like a different plane. I'll probably move the rods up one hole and eliminate the y-harness and use the ail and aux ports on the receiver. This should allow me to use aileron differential which should help.

Also, when I got home from work today I saw the new orange backlight for my lcd. About an hour after I started my DX6i is reborn with a backlight. Though the orange isn't at orange as I had hoped (picture on ebay was a darker orange) I couldn't be happier with the simple mod. I went with the tech4rc kit because it required no soldering. What a cheap, simple and extremely effective mod this is. Can't wait to take it out tonight when I fly the night vapor. Happy flying!
Posted by 59er9er | Aug 01, 2013 @ 01:39 AM | 3,067 Views
I just finished adding ailerons to the Super Cub and I'm looking forward to getting her up in the air. I had already taken out some of the dihedral by pulling the plastic wing struts quite taut which made the SC more fun to fly if not more challenging. So I think the ailerons should be just what she needed. I'll report back after her maiden flight with ailerons.

Up next, brushless conversion. I've got an Axi 2122 sitting around and all I need to find are some 6mm spacers to be able to mount it to one of those beautiful CNC machined aluminum engine mounts you see on eBay.