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xplaneguy's blog
Posted by xplaneguy | Jun 16, 2012 @ 03:50 PM | 11,720 Views
Here's a few photos of the 79" span Starmax B-17. Needless to say, this is an impressive size foamy B-17. The Flying Fortress features E-retracts with metal trunions, flaps, landing lights and working bomb bay doors.

Unfortunately, it has it's issues which need to be resolved during assembly. The major issue is all the servos with the exception of the tail wheel steering servo had to be pulled out with pliers and repositioned to allow the servo covers to fit otherwise you can leave the covers off but it doesn't look good. Also the plywood spar was sanded using a small finishing sander to allow easy installation and removal into the wing. The plywood mount for the four ESCs was broken in two places which required strengthening with crafts sticks and epoxy. I didn't like the look of the engine cowling, so...I painted the front of each with flat black paint to give them a more scale appearance. I'm currently airbrushing weathering and painting details. I plan to maiden it this coming week. I'll be flying mine on two 4S 3300 mAh batteries. It should be fun!

This thread is for our good friend Steve Wells, a WWII B-17 Radio Operator. His B-17 (43-37599) "Moonlight Serenade" which looked similar to this Starmax Fortress, was brought down by heavy flak damage and crashed in France on 5 Sep 1944. Steve evaded capture with the help of a French family for six weeks.

Steve, I salute your service to our great nation!

Best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Jun 16, 2012 @ 03:12 PM | 11,167 Views
Here's a few photos of the new FMS ASK-23 Powered Sailplane. Assembly is quick and painless. The wing is attached with four screws for easy removal. The ASK-23 uses a 3S 1800 mAh battery. Another sweet sailplane from FMS.

Best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Jun 06, 2012 @ 03:26 PM | 10,408 Views
Here's photos from another great CVRC Float Fly. Great weather and great pilots!

Best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | May 23, 2012 @ 05:18 PM | 11,241 Views
Evelyn and I made the trip to Visalia, CA to attend the CVRC Spring Aerotow. Unfortunately, we had another commitment that weekend so we were only there on Friday, 18 May 2012. It was well worth the drive to see everyone and enjoy the amazing aircraft.

Here's a few photos from Friday.

Best,
Tony &...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | May 08, 2012 @ 01:30 PM | 12,021 Views
Here's a few photos of the new FMS ASW-28. This is a beautiful foam sailplane. Assembly was quick and painless.

I plan to fly the maiden tomorrow morning and hope it flies as good as it looks!

Wingspan: 90.5 in.
Length: 41.3 in.
Battery: 11.1V 3S 1300mAh 25C Li-Po

Best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | May 02, 2012 @ 05:13 PM | 12,082 Views
Here's a few photos of the New Dynam FW-190 from Nitroplanes.com. Assembly took less than 30 minutes. The plane looks great and I expect it to be another great flying aircraft from Dynam. It flies on the 14.8V 2200 mAh battery.

http://www.nitroplanes.com/60a-dy894...-eretract.html

Best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Apr 16, 2012 @ 01:05 PM | 11,387 Views
This Friday, 20 April 2012, I'll be retiring from the United States Air Force after 24 years of service.

I would like to thank everyone for their support over these years of military life. This is the greatest country in the world and I'm proud to have served. Your support of our men and women in the Armed Services is very much appreciated.

I'll be enjoying 6 weeks off before starting my new job, the most time off since high school, so, you know what that means......lots of RC building and flying!

Thank you again,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Feb 29, 2012 @ 03:59 PM | 10,585 Views
Last Sunday, Jet Fabara, a journalist with the Edwards AFB Newspaper "The Desert Wings" did a story about our base RC club -The Muroc Model Masters. The purpose of the story is to educate and inspire aviation enthusiasts, young and old to get involved in Model Aviation. This is a club that I'm proud to be associated with. The club has a long, rich history on the hallowed ground of Edwards AFB but more important, Muroc Model Master members support one another and kindly welcome new pilots and spectators. This hobby is about fun and friendship and MMM is all about both!

Here's the story:
http://www.edwards.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123291729

For more information about the club, feel free to send me a PM or contact Ron Scaggs at (661) 256-4167, Jerry Rice at (661) 943-4818 or visit the Muroc Model Masters website at www.murocmodelmasters.org.

All the best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Feb 24, 2012 @ 07:07 PM | 11,200 Views
Here's a plane that my daughter Evelyn talked me into buying at our local hobby shop and I'm glad I did. The Gee Bee is one of Evelyn's favorite planes...so...I had too!

ElectriFly did a great job with this model. The manual was very well done and easy to follow. Assembly was quick with rare earth magnets being used in many places to put this plane together and they are strong. The majority of the assembly time was spent installing wing support wires/elastic thread which took about 20 minutes.

The maiden flight was very easy and the plane has good power on the 11.1V 25C 2200mAh recommended battery. The Gee Bee looks awesome in the air! Remember, it's a Gee Bee...so...keep the speed up on the landing.

For more info, check out the ElectriFly Gee Bee link:
http://www.electrifly.com/largeelectrics/gpma6020.html

Here's a few photos!

Best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Feb 23, 2012 @ 12:51 PM | 11,178 Views
Back in August 2011, I had the pleasure of flying my first pusher jet. It was the Nico Hobbies F-22 Raptor and I was hooked. I immediately purchased a RxR F-22 from Nico Hobbies owner Pat Gagnon during the West Coast Big Jolt Event and have been flying the Raptor for 6 months. This is one fun RC aircraft and I love it! In fact, several weeks ago, I sent Pat a PM for another RxR F-22 in Edwards AFB markings and a RxR SR-71 which is done in the markings of aircraft 955 which is here at the Edwards AFB Museum. I met Pat and the rest of The Chino Renegades in Ontario to not only pick up these models from Pat but to fly with some great RC pilots. We had a great time!

Here's photos of the Nico Hobbies RxR SR-71 which was photographed yesterday evening with the real SR-71 Blackbird (955). Note the 955 serial number and Lockheed Skunk on the tails of both model and real jet. Flying photos taken by my daughter Evelyn. Great job Eve!

Check out all of the Nico Pusher Jets at:
www.nicohobbies.com

Best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Jan 31, 2012 @ 05:00 PM | 11,179 Views
My involvement in model aviation has been one of the great joys of my life but my greatest gift and joy is my daughter Evelyn. She always amazes me and recently expressed an interest in how I began flying RC aircraft. As I explained to her, it all started with the Cox .049 PT-19 control line model and then on to the Cox .049 Cessna Centurion which debuted in 1977. My good friend had one sitting on a shelf in his closet after it crashed during the maiden flight. I asked him if I could fix it and we could try to fly it. He said "Sure!" With the model repaired, my buddy wanted me to fly it since I had been hanging around RC fields for years and watched other pilots fly. I had no stick time when I started the .049 engine on that Cessna and I was nervous! My buddy hand launched it with a great toss and a solid runnning .049...the model climbed beautifully! I began a gentle left turn and kept the model off my right shoulder so that I wouldn't have to worry about control confusion. Remember it was my friends plane, so the pressure was on for this first time flyer. He trusted me and I didn't want to disappoint him. After 4 minutes of run time, the .049 quit and glided, still keeping it in a shallow left turn till I approached a 150 foot strip of grass. I over shot and landed safely in 7 foot tall corn field. We were jumping up and down in celebration then ran another 300+ feet into the corn rows trying to find the plane. A few minutes later, I spotted the plane resting on...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Jan 23, 2012 @ 04:55 PM | 11,229 Views
Here's photos of the New Durafly de Havilland DH 100 Vampire Mk.6 from Hobby King. This is my new favorite 70mm foamy EDF jet! I've now flown the aircraft 5 times using an 14.8v 40C 2200mAh battery and I love it. Per the Hobby King description, she can easily handle up to a 3300mAh battery.

The maiden flight was a little tail heavy using the CG from the manual. I immediately landed and moved the battery to where the front edge of the 2200 pack is centered over the nose gear retract motor and the aircraft was a dream to fly. My flight times were right around 5 minutes with the 2200 mAh pack. Just like the Hobby King item description states, this aircraft is a glider power off yet moves out nicely at WOT. One of the pilots from my club said, "It floats like a Muliplex Easy Star!" That is does! Another nice surprise...the sound of the fan. You would think someone put a sound card and speakers in this thing. It has cool stock jet noise. The landing gear retracts slow and smooth and has handled all five landings on the Dry Lake here at Edwards AFB, CA. This Vampire is unique EDF jet subject and a lot of fun to fly! She's a keeper!

All the best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Jan 10, 2012 @ 05:00 PM | 12,520 Views
This year's AMA Expo 2012 was packed with lots of great demos, featured projects like Aero Telemetry's Hughes XF-11 and NASA Droid as well as lots of vendors. One of the great rooms was the Free Flight/Make & Take room which feature the Black Sheep Exhibition Squadron. My daughter and I spent a lot of time hanging out flying free flight models and visiting with the finest free flight modelers in the AMA including Don Butman and Dave Gee. What a great way to introduce the public to such a fun part of Model Aviation. Free Flight and Control Line Models is where it all started for me more than 35 years ago and now my daughter is taking an interest in balsa stick and tissue models, all due to the AMA Expo.

Unfortunately, after two days of photographing the event, I returned home to find the auto focus feature did not like the indoors, so many of my photos did not make it on here. Time to invest in a new camera.

If you can, try to make it to the AMA Expo 2013....you'll have a great time!

Best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Dec 20, 2011 @ 02:21 PM | 10,214 Views
After a year of debating, I finally pulled the trigger on Dynam A-10 PNP version for $109 from Nitroplanes. I'm glad I did! The plane required several mods for me to be happy with it. First mod was adding a CF rod to the horizontal stabilizer, which took 10 minutes. Second, add small stir sticks to the leading edge of the horizontal stabilzer mount point to correct negative incidence. Third, cut and reposition the vertical stabilzer to a more vertical position. Fourth, epoxy the velcro battery holddown. Fifth, paint cockpit and add pilot. Sixth, paint all brown camo patterns...gunship gray! Seventh, add scale gun and the final step was remove the white star and bars from the national insignia with an x-acto knife and paint the red bar...black. Yes...it involved patience but for a guy that supported Green Camo A-10's at RAF Bentwaters, England....this was neccessary!

Epoxy was used throughout the assembly with the exception of reinstalling the canopy after painting the cockpit. I used the included foam glue.

I used an 11.1V 40C 2200mAh battery for the maiden and two additional flight this past weekend. The front edge of the battery was placed at the fourth fuselage rib inside the battery compartment to achieve the 75mm CG. The maiden was a piece of cake. The power is fair for an aircraft which is not meant to be a speed demon. For an A-10 fan....I'm happy with it! Heck...for $109, it beats the pants off the old GWS A-10. Friends from my local club here at Edwards AFB were debating like me but are now pulling the trigger too!

Best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Nov 11, 2011 @ 09:11 PM | 11,738 Views
This is the Exceed RC 90mm F-18E/F available from Nitroplanes.com.

Upon opening the box, you immediately appreciate the size and appearance of this F-18. She's a thing of beauty! The next thing I noticed was the optional two seat cockpit which is very cool. I had the pleasure of supporting the very first F-18F here at Edwards AFB, CA more than ten years ago, so once I get a second pilot, I will be using the two seat cockpit. Assembly time for me was several hours. The majority of the time involved removing the paint from all attachment points for the wings, horizontal stabilizers, vertical stabilizers, nose cone and exhaust nozzle. I used two part epoxy to glue everything on. Loctite was applied to all landing gear hardware for added security. Foam safe CA was also appled to the nose landing gear rear wood mount to ensure a stronger attachment. The kit gives you the option to install thrust vectoring nozzles. I opted for fixed nozzles to minimize additional weight and additional work.

Once our weather clears, I will be flying this aircraft on a 6S 40C 4000mAh battery. I can't wait! More feedback to come after the maiden.

Here's a few pictures.

All the best,
Tony
Posted by xplaneguy | Oct 31, 2011 @ 01:49 PM | 10,813 Views
Here's the New RTF Airfield F6F Hellcat from Nitroplanes.com. The assembly time was only 40 minutes and another 30 minutes devoted to painting the prop tips, push rods, landing gear and plastic parts for more scale realism. I used the included foam glue to install the wings and horizontal stabilizers. With the stock 7.4V 1000mAh battery all the way forward in the battery compartment, I added 1/4 oz. weight to the firewall to achieve the proper CG.

This was the first time I've flown an Airfield 800mm Warbird with the Airfield 2.4 Ghz. Radio and I was very surprised at how well the radio worked. I own several Parkzone RTF Micros and this Airfield 2.4 radio is as good if not better. The transmitter only requires 4 AA batteries and your ready to fly. Like all the other 800mm warbirds, the F6F required plenty of ground speed before lift off. Once in the air, I added a two right clicks of rudder to counter a little prop torque and she tracked beautifully. Even without expo, the stock radio was dialed down to minimize control sensitivity, A big surprise! The Hellcat flies very well! I did five slow speed pass as my daughter snapped a few inflight photos during the maiden and the Hellcat was very stable at slow speeds. After 5 minutes, the battery and ESC were barely warm. This is another winner from Airfield and it looks great with it's bigger brother, the 1400mm F6F Hellcat from Nitroplanes.com.

For added fun, do some formation flying and dogfight your Airfield Warbird...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Oct 25, 2011 @ 05:12 PM | 11,219 Views
Evelyn and I made our third trip to Visalia, CA in October to attend the CVRC Fall Float Fly on Saturday, 22 Oct 2011. We had a wonderful time! Thanks to Chris Pratt and John Wilson for hosting another great event!

Check out the CVRC Website for future event dates:
http://www.cvrcsoaring.com/

Here's some photos!

Best,
...Continue Reading
Posted by xplaneguy | Oct 20, 2011 @ 03:36 PM | 10,791 Views
During the Air Force Flight Test Center 60th Anniversary held Friday, Oct 14 2011 at Edwards AFB, CA, I had a cool opportunity to display several of my EDF jets at the event and spend several days with Brig Gen Chuck Yeager.

Here's a few photos of my LX 70mm F-35 and Skyangel 50mm F-35 with the real AF-01 F-35 Lightning II. The reaction over the EDF jets from the crowd and the F-35 maintainers was really cool! We may have more RC pilots joining in on the fun!

Another photo of Evelyn with Gen. Yeager.

Best,
Tony