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deckert's blog
Posted by deckert | Jul 31, 2011 @ 07:30 PM | 4,975 Views
Lost 4 birds in 4 weeks. Two do to dumb thumbs and 2 do to unk. The two due to unk. has me worried. I flight was a maiden & the other was a 6th flight. Loss of conrtol on both unk. flights. Spektrum DX-7 with AR7000's on both. Both were eletcric birds. The 6th flight bird had been flying OK but then took a turn towards mother earth and piled in.. Packs were full & pre-flight showed no problems. On the plus side, I have some gear to put into new birds I guess.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jul 30, 2011 @ 01:54 AM | 4,809 Views
I don't believe in fate per se but sometimes things do happen to make me wonder. This is one of those cases. The vid is from 2009 but it's a reminder of what so many went thru in WWII and how lives can be so intertwined. Truly a heart rending story.


A&E Herb Heilbrun & John Leahr (7 min 15 sec)


Dan
Posted by deckert | Jul 09, 2011 @ 09:11 PM | 5,237 Views
Brand new EFlite Extra 260 met it's demise. Everything checked and double checked before the maiden. Next three minutes were the worst joy before a sudden death finale. This wasn't my first ARF nor am I a newbie to RC birds. Problems from the get go and blah blah stuff going wrong. This was my 2nd such bird. Anyway, about 150' up and 200' out, the bird was no longer taking input for controls. So about 3/4 throttle I'm heading into a full blown dive with no ability to do anything. All gear is Spektrum, MotrolFly & Hitec, same as the last bird. Brought the parts back and tested but no response from any of the gear. The recvr. was rebound but still no response from anything. Unk. what's going on but will be sorting through some tests to 'try' & discover what failed. Just an Aw Doody day!

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jul 02, 2011 @ 12:37 AM | 7,281 Views
Sad to say, but Graupner USA just dosn't cut the mustard for anything I would ever consider to be user friendly. http://www.v-eastonline.com Despite all the e-mails and phone calls, I hit a 100% ZERO with these people. I guess they have no interest in my business. Thankfully one of my club members found an alternative that's identical to what I wanted from Graupner at a lesser cost. (Shipping still stinks) http://dreamworksrc.com/catalog/prod...oducts_id=1659 Dreamworks followed through with order received, order processed and order shipped with tracking. Truly 1st rate! All I wanted were some wing plugs/Wing Servo Connector Kit so I don't have to connect any wiring. Just put the wings on, screw the bolts down and go fly. How simple is that? Anyway, this is just my rant on a company that makes/made a really great product but just doesn't have the time to provide service to their customer base. No wonder Hobby Lobby dropped them as a vendor.

Hey Graupner.. you can kiss off IMHO. Is that better for you? You've lost all my current and future business over a lousy 45 bucks.

On a PLUS side, Robart & I had some problems with a custom order. Missing and wrong parts were handled in a pretty expiditious manner on their end. Robart went out of their way (and I mean way out) to resolve the issues I raised. Their e-mail service side could use some help with respect to getting answers but.. that aside, I couldn't be more happy with their service or products. Truly a company that cares about their customer base.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jun 18, 2011 @ 06:36 PM | 4,693 Views
Had a good laugh today over some bad flying. I had a rough morning over some computer stuff from Office Depot. Long story but those people are complete idiots. Decided I needed to go flying to relieve my anger. Got to the field and one other member was there. Took my Funtana 40 out and put it thru a tank of fuel. Offered up the bird for the member to fly because he's flown it before and is one of our instructors. He did a bit of flying and got out a little far and got dis-combobulated.

Short version being nothing but a box of sticks from the prop to the rear of the wing. I only had two bad things to say, #1 being I had no camera to take pics of the damage and #2 he crashed it WAY out in the pucker-brush and we had to drive out to retrieve the parts & pieces. He offered to replace but I just couldn't help but laugh over the incident and had to refuse the offer. The guy is a very good pilot but stuff happens. Anyone know of a good bird to put a GK Saito 72 into?

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jun 01, 2011 @ 11:00 PM | 4,702 Views
I watched last night, a spider building a web on my back deck. The little bugger went around & around doing it's thing. Tonight, I got to watch it recovering the material, cutting out the garbage it collected and rebuilding the web. I was amazed just how similar this was with respect to rebuilding our birds when we crash them. Perhaps mankind does indeed mimic nature?

Dan
Posted by deckert | May 29, 2011 @ 01:59 AM | 4,760 Views
I couldn't believe it. I had 'some' suspicion I might be able to fly today without the freaking winds & rain that's plagued us for the past 3 months. It's been a week since we last mowed the field & I knew it needed it. But I figured why not take a bird out just in case. Good thinking I guess because I managed to get some flights in. Mild winds (5~10mph) but was clear and warm. Mowed a little & flew a little. Perfect! Thank goodness we have a 72" diesel mower because we have about 2~2.5 acres of irrigated grass to take care of. www.higginsfield.com Big old fluffy clouds were welcome so you can see your bird way up high & far out. But.. there's always a but.. it wasn't a great day for the planes.
1. Foamy flyer-lost the landing gear, minor damage
2. 'Big' electric Gee Bee bird died in mid flight. Crashed into field with no major damage
3. Big stick crash (electric) TX sticks springs quit working. Minor damage.
4. 30%Yak LG failed and skidded down the runway. Minor damage but CF LG is toast
5. Tail wheel lost on 40 size Futana, minor damage
6. P40 gasser. No problems
7. Clarences what-ever the heck they are gassers, no problems
I guess in the grand scheme of things it was a good day. No one was picking up sticks and pieces of fiberglass. Plus, the field is mowed!

Dan
Posted by deckert | Mar 02, 2011 @ 10:43 PM | 5,877 Views
OK, sometimes things are so are so true they're just stupid true. Here's some stuff that is in the category. Believe it our not, the images are real. Google Kulula Airlines and you'll discover a whole new world of a radical approach with respect to flying via commercial airlines.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Feb 25, 2011 @ 12:36 AM | 5,580 Views
If you don't, you may well be flying your next bird in your closet for all intents.

As you may know the FAA is trying to regulate us out of existance with the new rules they are trying to pass. Go to the link and you can send your congressman a letter. It's already written for you!

http://amagov.modelaircraft.org/4077/go/

Dan
Posted by deckert | Feb 02, 2011 @ 12:15 AM | 5,246 Views
Oh criminy..just when I thought things had calmed down for me buying any new birds, along comes this darn bird from Pat Trittle. It's a bit smaller then what I'd like to have but.. I have a GP 65" gasser version but wanted an electric version in 80". Alas, I'll suffer through with a 55" electric I guess. Pretty darn nice looking bird. I can hardly wait for the release. It's short kit and that's good. Gives me a chance to get back into building balsa again instead of these stupid ARF kits or the foamies I've been building.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jan 12, 2011 @ 08:37 PM | 5,081 Views
Our Xmas party is tomorrow and here's my gift for the raffle. No, we're not running late or forgetful. We just hold off until all the family stuff is over, the bills are due and we can just plain relax. I figured since I got into building these stupid things, and the extra bedroom is full, just give it away. I't'll make the wife happy and that's worth WAY MORE then the bird. Happy New Year to all and may you have many great flights.

Ironically enough, our club secretary, a 14 YO kid, won the bird I built. However, I did win a new AR7000 Spektrum rcvr. I think it was a good trade..

Dan
Posted by deckert | Jan 09, 2011 @ 01:08 AM | 5,050 Views
I always had those dreams where I'd retire and just build planes & helis and do nothing but fly. The honey-do's, yard & house aside from that, I've discovered what a moron dream that was. "Honey, have you seen my rose colored glasses?" I never figured in those darn cold and windy days when I could actually fly but decided I'm just not going to go out in that cold & wind. Surely there must be something to do where I can stay warmer. Well, that led me off to getting foamie plans, ordering all the materials..blah blah you know the rest of the story. So now I'm warm & cozy but there's a breeding room in my spare bedroom. Those suckers are multiplying beyond belief. Anyone know of a local 'I need to stop building planes' support group? I sold two, thankfully, but now have to get rid of some more before I wind up in a divorce. Thank goodness I have an understanding wife. In the past couple of weeks, I've built a depron 3mm Yak, & 2 Sbachs, and a depron 6mm Extra 300 and another Sbach. I have just enough depron left to build one more bird and then hopefully I can quit the insanity. Now about the 35K I need to put out to build a new garage with separate work spaces for her & me... read a lot of whining here.. But I have the design work and plans all done if that counts for anything. I hate winter here in this tree-less country. It just costs me $$$$$.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Dec 25, 2010 @ 01:01 AM | 5,106 Views
I know there's always a lot of discussion (good/bad) about vendors out there. However, I feel as though I needed to take the time to actually congratulate 3 vendors I deal with. One company is http://www.subsonicplanes.com/ and the Owner is Ken Young. Subsonic isn't a big vendor but sure is a reliable vendor. I've had a few problems here and there (albeit darn few-like 1 in a hundred) with products from Ken but the issues were product related, not service related. I've ordered, and paid for parts from Ken, and then received an e-mail telling me something else would work better or is less expensive and asking me if I want to change the order. How sweet is that? Do you get that kind of service from your vendor? Yes, I can buy parts cheaper from HK or others but I deal with an owner that actually believes in service. What a breath of fresh air and concept, Service.

Secondly, I want to thank http://www.bmkdesigns.net/ Another small vendor that has some nice products and is as responsive as is Ken. Their SERVICE is second to none. One of the fastest shipping vendors I've ever dealt with.

Last of all I want to give thanks to Lee Ulinger, http://www.leeulingermodels.com/ In a twisted sort of way, I don't really like Lee because he's the dirty dog that got me into foamies. I looked high & low for a 1st time foamie and Lee's birds just fit to a T. Minimal building, minmal parts and the product line is excellent.

All the above is relative to three vendors I consider excellent for products and support with minimum turn around times in case of failures. Yes, I have expounded on the virtues of these vendors here & there throughout the RCG forums, but for good reasoning. It's called SERVICE. Beat that!
Dan
Posted by deckert | Dec 18, 2010 @ 05:04 PM | 5,019 Views
Since I have the little MSR, I needed to add to the indoor fleet. Here's my 50gram SBach. Cut from plans submitted by others in the foamy groups. Should be about 4.55oz AUW.
Setup;
3.6 gram servos 3ea.
Motrolfly 2203-1600
Motrolfly FM- 10
350 30C Lipo
DX-7 w/AR6100

Dan
Posted by deckert | Dec 16, 2010 @ 08:08 PM | 5,132 Views
Sometimes ya just have to bite the bullet and sidestep what you want vs what you REALLY want to do. I made that step today. Our club is launching into a new venue to get kids into flying by doing indoor flying. I REALLY REALLY wanted to have a CP heli to fly indoors in the area we have, but.. I bought a BNF Blade mSR to teach the kids on because of our limited space. It's going to stink for me but it'll help the kids out. The bird is dialed in and let the fun begin.


End of story!

Dan
Posted by deckert | Dec 08, 2010 @ 10:28 PM | 4,821 Views
Sometimes things come together on endeavors. Tonight, our work thru our club, has meshed with the world. We now have an indoor flying venue with our local school district. Even better, we received some grant funding to purchase equipment to promote the venue to get our local youth into the world of RC flying. As our club has been 100% outdoor related, we are very proud to be going forward to promote indoor RC flying and to work with our local youth within the community.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Dec 07, 2010 @ 12:26 AM | 4,658 Views
Just bought a new bird from an RCG member tonite. I'm just a sucker for general aviation birds. Mostly old timers because I learned to fly in a J-3 and had to transition into a Cessna 150 because it had radios in it. None-the-less, I still like the Cessna lines so here it is. High wing craft offer a great view below you while in flight. I never did like flying the Piper Commanche or Cherokee, I was always looking at the darn panel and WAY ahead of the bird. I felt claustrophobic.

Now the ultimate question, fuel or electric power. I hate decisions like this. Worse is, I'm SERIOUSLY considering stripping the covering and adding retracts to it. I just haven't figured out how to get the main gear to retract and fold into the fuse like a Cessna 210 does. It basically folds back 90 degrees and rotates about 45 degrees. I'll take any advice/links anyone can offer/provide. I still swear It would be cheaper to be a drug addict.

Dan

I forgot to add, 63"WS and 6~7lbs. http://www.greatplanes.com/airplanes/gpma1228.html
Posted by deckert | Dec 04, 2010 @ 04:57 AM | 4,598 Views
I NEVER EVER EVER thought I'd be doing this but here I am. I'm setting up to fly indoors. In a 50'w x 100'l x 25'h no less. Well actually the club is doing this, but being the dummy I am, here I go as well. I swore like a hooker at a bible rally there was no way I'd ever do something like this but here I am. I'm just getting dragged into the depths of Satans Lair.

Just how in the world people have the patience and fingers to work with these flimsy things is a miracle to me. Most everything I touch bends, breaks or breaks loose. I had to have the wife help me to get the stupid prop on. (Prop-saver) I wonder just who the sadist was that invented these things? I'll bet that sucker is still laughing about this. None-the-less, I got the bird built thanks to Ken Young from Subsonic Planes. I ordered up the wrong power stuff, DUH! What makes this worse is the fact I'm working on free plans from the foamie members here @ RCG and tuning them up for laser cutting. It's a good thing some of my friends don't know about this, they'd shun me for life. They'd be more accepting if I was on drugs. Lord please tell me how I stooped to this level of depravity!

When all was said & done, I wound up with a bird that weighed in at a whopping AUW of 130g or 4.6oz. Holy criminy, I have props that weigh that much. I sure didn't make any effort to go pretty, I just slammed it together. Maybe next time I'll read the directions. Just another DUH moment. Anyway, here's the results of my impatience. If I crash, it better be darn well be spectacular. Parts and foam EVERYWHERE!

Dan
Posted by deckert | Oct 20, 2010 @ 10:54 PM | 4,592 Views
After a long time of an 80" H9 Power 46 Cub sitting around, I finally put her into the air last weekend. I dumped the 46 motor & went with a Reaper GR45 on 4s/14.8v swinging a 14x7 APC prop. I modded it so the lower strut bolts are now pins. (from the H9 Pawnee kit) Much thanks to my friend Steve1814 for his advice on getting Graupner wing plugs into the bird. No more plugging in servo wires. All in all, all mods were simple enough to do but lordy were they a pain in the backside. It took forever to find a new motor mount to fit the GR45 and get it installed. It finally came in the way of a GP medium size mount and even it had to be modified.

No way the wings will ever fit a wing bag.

I ordered/have some scale gear from Robart but it's yet to be painted & installed. I just had to take it out and fly it. I only had a single 4s/14.8v Max Amps pack to run it with. 1st flight was virtually perfect, I bounced the 1st landing 3". I recharged the pack, or rather thought I did, (New charger and I went stupid) & went up again. Powered up again and went flying for more trimming. Almost a BIG mistake. I didn't get the pack recharged because I failed to understand the charger. That being said, the pack went into LVC and I lost power way high and off the end of the runway. Rearmed the bird and brought it back in for 150' two wheel touchdown and settled right at my feet. Perfect! I got so lucky! I guess luck is better than skill sometimes. This bird is definitley a take to the field flier. I can't believe just how gentle it is to fly when the controls are set up right. I just run on about 25~30 % throttle but have 1300w behind it to do some special stuff. Sure glad I have another 1 in the closet! The members @ the field couldn't believe it was electric.

Dan
Posted by deckert | Oct 04, 2010 @ 11:50 PM | 4,639 Views
Well, we had a real great turnout for the Regional IMAC (Sept. 24,25,26) this year. We had 24 pilots registered and flying for the NW Regional Championship. These pilots put on one heck of a show. Beginners to Expert class was truly an event. Even though I've been to 3 IMAC events, (I only took pictures) I had no real idea what transpired to compete. I asked for, and got, an earful of what transpires to compete in an event like this. These pilots have to fly a 'set' pattern and be judged on how well/precise they fly the sequence. It's not like me where I go out & turn & burn and let the wings go where they may. This is precision flying with restrictive limits. I learned a lot and enjoyed the heck out of it. I can definitely see where I need to practice to be able to actually be in precise control of my birds. As in not just flopping them around through the air.

The above being said, we had our Indian Summer Fun Fly (Oct. 1,2,3) this past weekend. It's a 'fly what you bring' and 'fly it how you want event'. We had everything from foamies to 30% birds and helis and had 30 registered pilots. Gas/electric/fuel, you name it, we had it. The pilots with the big bids put on one heck of show time & again with their expertise doing 3D work. $6K birds dancing <6" off the pavement is a site to behold.

We fed over 50 people for IMAC and over 45 for Indian Summer. Weather for both events was 72~80 degrees and virtually dead calm for winds. Kids & adults galore. Two weekends of pure enjoyment! I don't know how it gets any better then that! Except!!! Not a SINGLE CRASH! We did have a single plane loss because our club president lost his bird in the puckerbrush somewhere due to unk circumstances. on the last day of Indian Summer. Pics are at http://www.higginsfield.com/ under the Media/photos link.

Dan