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Posted by Sandancer | Jan 07, 2013 @ 03:26 PM | 19,374 Views
My detailing, modifications, and pilot up-grade for the FMS P-51D "Big Beautiful Doll" Cockpit!



I like the concept FMS has devoted to the sliding canopy/cockpit design. The front of the cockpit itself is wide open therefor allowing a lot of air to enter. With the canopy no longer glued down, there should be enough clearance in the rear for adequate air ventilation thru out the cockpit. The dash panel is adequately detailed.

The pilot is the same guy used in the 1/7 scale 1700mm P-51 and just looks out of scale for the 1/8 scale 1400mm P-51, although he does have a better appearance compared to 'ole "Goofie"! Because the new cockpit requires a full figured pilot, and I had my 1/8 scale AOI WWII US pilot, I decided I would combine the two. The fit between the AOI pilot bust and the lower torso of the FMS oem pilot was almost a perfect fit. Glued together with some paint touch-up, it's hard to tell the dissemblance between the two. When he's seated in the cockpit, you can't even tell.


The canopy locks closed with a couple of ball & sockets located on both sides of the sliders. They making opening the canopy a bit difficult, so I am thinking of adding some sort of pull tabs to help aid in that task? I haven't come up with anything that might work, yet retain a scale appearance yet?

UP-DATE 3/19/2013: After repeatedly installing the cockpit on & off the fuse I started to notice a weakness in the forward section!

...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Jan 03, 2013 @ 12:03 AM | 20,894 Views
I'm going to show how I Dyno Tuned the FMS 14" 4-blade prop!





I must admit, out of the box, this prop needed very little attention.

Dyno Tuning the FMS V7'5 4 blade prop (8 min 23 sec)


My vid is pretty much self-explanatory, but I will go into detail on a couple of things:

In the process of doing the 1mm prop shim mod to increase the blade pitch, I noticed the supplied 3mm x 17mm screws were not fully penetrating the embedded nylon material of the lock nut.

To better explain (and a lot less typing on my part) I found a really good explanation of how a nylon lock nut is supposed to work: "Nylon locking nuts, also known as ny-locks, have a small ring of nylon on one end that forms slightly smaller hole than the threaded hole going through the nut. When the nut is screwed onto a bolt, the bolt has to force its way through the smaller opening, causing the nylon to stretch. This stretching creates a huge amount of friction between the nut and the bolt, allowing the nut to stay tight for long periods of time without coming loose. Nylon lock nuts are especially useful for applications that involve a lot of vibration that would cause regular nuts to come loose."

That said, I decided I was going to use (8) 3mm x 20mm hex screws to secure the blades to the backing plate. As you can see in the thumbnails below, the 20mm screws penetrate the nylon with room to spare.

Note* When doing the 1mm shim mod it will throw the...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Dec 29, 2012 @ 12:23 AM | 21,059 Views
This is my Un-Boxing and evaluation of the FMS 1400mm V7.5 P-51 Big Beautiful Doll!



I must say, I am impressed with this new FMS Version 7.5 P-51 BBD!

UP-DATE 1/11/2013:

I made up a couple of decals for the BBD. One is a more scale kill insignia to replace the rather inaccurate one FMS supplied for the port side fuse (their supposed to be swastikas not crosses). The other is the "Crew" insignia that goes on the port side engine cover.


I would estimate a normal build from box to maiden....2 hrs. max maybe? FMS has done all the work on this bird!

-The CG is 110mm from LE of the wing.
-On page 20 of the Op. manual, the high & low rates for all the control surfaces are listed.
-FMS 65A ESC w/5A SBEC
-They list a 4250-580kv motor in the manual, but mine came with the 4250-540kv motor. That will work for me.
-Battery: 4S 2600mAh, but I could see putting a 5S 4000mAh in her?
-9g servos thru-out, with the exception of the (2) 17g servos for the elevator & rudder.
-9g digital/slow motion servos for the flaps.
-9g reversed servos for the inner LG doors.
-PZ-312 E-Tracts w/full metal struts.
-The sliding canopy is a nice touch, but when it locks into the windshield frame it's kinda hard to get it back open.
-All the control surfaces have pre-installed spars with the exception of the flaps.
-The wings can be made to be 1-piece, but there was no wire harnesses.
-The new radiator scoop is non-functional. I would guess the reason...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Dec 12, 2012 @ 06:32 PM | 12,782 Views
My Motor Dyno in Conjunction with the Du-Bro Prop Balancer!




I've had quite a few inquiries about my Motor Dyno that I had posted in the Servo Testers section, so I've put together the following vid to show how I use the dyno for various functions......eg: motor/prop combinations, changes in blades-pitch adjustments (VarioProp), amp/watt/kv readings, ESC timing, prop/spinner balancing, etc.

Motor Dyno (10 min 41 sec)


As I stated in the vid, I run all my full run-up tests outdoors in a safe environment! I have a big fan out there, so I can run at WOT without fear of something overheating. So far (knock on wood) I have never had any serious incidents resulting in loss of limb or equipment!

Here are the links to the testing equipment"

Turnigy Plush 80A ESC
FrSky FLVS-01 - Lipo Voltage Sensor and Display
K1 KV/RPM meter
Watt's UP meter
GWS MT-1 Multi-Function servo tester
Overlander/Neodym Multi-Function DC meter



My Modified Du-Bro Prop Balancer.



I added four 2 1/2" risers to my Du-Bro balancer so I would have clearance for props up to 20". I know, the balancer can be located on the edge of a table to balance larger props, but I preferred this method.

I didn't want to get into the process of how I balance my blades as there are several good tutorials online for that purpose.

3 Bladed Prop Balancing for RC Aircraft

HOW TO/DIY: Balancing a 4 Blade Prop on Du•Bro Balancer

The same idea can be applied...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Nov 24, 2012 @ 10:25 PM | 13,557 Views
Servo Testers......a must have in any RC toolbox!



You can't help but notice all the complaints posted on various threads here on RCG pertaining to disfunctional servos, whacky E-Tracts, inebriated prop blades, and motors & ESC's that just won't co-operate with each other! Suffering thru one of these catastrophic incidents when your plane is 400ft. off the ground can cause undo stress in most instances!

The solution....get a servo tester!

That way you can run a full diagnoses of the electrical system before you ever take the plane off the workbench. A good servo tester can determine if the problem lies in the servo itself, if the lead has a break, is the problem in your Rx, or is it some other mysterious gremlin? How exacerbating is it when you get to the field and in front of all your fellow pilots, you plug the battery in and a metal geared servo starts squealing, or worse yet, it catches on fire! As your plane lifts off the ground you discover that the left E-Tract doesn't know what the right one is doing? You're coming out of a dive and the motor starts making weird sounds, or worse yet, the prop comes un-glued....literally....more stress!

Most of the better servo testers on the market have at least 3 settings.
(1) Manual: Good for checking end-points and motor/ESC compliance.
(2) Neutral: Good for finding the center point of a servo.
(3) Auto: Good for running a servo thru a continuous cycle. This function is great for breaking in...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Sep 26, 2012 @ 12:30 AM | 24,424 Views
The New Generation E-Tracts! Some refer to them as Servoless Retracts.



The only difference between the Aluminum and Plastic 60-120 FMS E-Tracts is the width of the main body.



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~~UP-DATE 3/21/2013~~

I am pleased to announce that Motion RC now has both the Aluminum & Plastic FMS E-Tracts in stock!

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~~UP-DATE 3/29/2013~~

The newest offering from Pingzheng are these large sized PZ-15096B all-metal (aluminum) E-Tracts w/10mm strut pin holes.

...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Sep 12, 2012 @ 02:00 PM | 13,915 Views
This is my review / build of the MrRCSound system.



My first bench sound test of the MrRCSound Budget sound module with the sound card A: Merlin / Allison / Daimler Benz / Lycoming engines.

The auto audio leveling on both my Sony HDR-SR11 and the audio leveling on most computers limit the sound amplification this unit puts out, but at sustained high speed your ears will bleed and your teeth will ache!


MrRCSound System2 (3 min 43 sec)


It would be really kewl if the machine gun card could fire LEDs as well..........


...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Sep 07, 2012 @ 12:11 PM | 15,339 Views
This is my build of the 1400mm Sky Surfer




Last year I decided I wanted a plane to use as a platform for some FPV work, so I decided to give the Sky Surfer the assignment.


First let me explain my circumstance. About a year ago I purchased a Sky Surfer from Toysonics. Having everything I would need, (ESC, servos, etc.) I ordered the ARF. When the plane arrived it was already glued together!

Because of health issues, the Sky Surfer project was shelved. It's now been over a year and I've decided to pursue the build again so I would have something ready to go come spring.

That said, I pulled the Sky Surfer out of her box and started spreading all the parts out. After figuring out how to run the ESC leads to the motor (keep in mind the fuse was already glued together), I discovered the motor was junk! After many attempts at dismantling and re-assembling the motor, I finally gave up!

Okay, I understand the design concept of the motor/motor mount for the Sky Surfer, but all I can say at this time is "what a joke"! There was no way I would ever get those two screws lined up to the back of the motor using my extended reach phillips! Needless to say, I ended up having to split the fuse!

After conferring with the guys on the "Sky Surfer - aka Bixler See Post #2 & #3 for parts & mods B4 asking" thread, I received some very beneficial info, and some great tips to help in the building of my Sky Surfer. Thanks guys, I appreciate all...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Sep 07, 2012 @ 12:09 PM | 14,534 Views
I'm going to devote this page to the FMS Props/Spinners and various mods!

*Please note* I have moved this page to a new location! More info and vids, including FMS G&C 4250 motor/prop tests!



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The Small Parts CnC 61mm prop adapter!



As I reported earlier, I've been working in conjunction with Terry at Small Parts CnC in the development of an extended prop adapter for the FMS G&C 4250 500kv, 540kv, & 580kv motors which have an 8mm x 35mm hex keyed prop adapter. I am happy to say they are now available!

The design was primarily based around the FMS P-51 spinners. The idea for an extended adapter is for the expansion of prop options to include the various 2-blade props on the market, MAS, APC, etc. It can also work for the more expensive composite 1-piece 4-blade props as well as the VarioProp 12C. props.

Unfortunately the FMS 35mm adapter just won't accommodate a prop assembly with a hub thicker then 17mm with enough thread to securely tighten the nut, not to mention the additional friction washer. The SPCnC 61mm adapter has the length to accommodate the thicker hubs along with a friction washer and either a standard 8 x 1.25mm nut or the 8 x 1.25mm domed nuts as well. Because the adapter is for the use of optional blades, it will work with either the V6 FP106 spinner which uses screws, or the V7 SU116 spinner which uses the 3mm bolts & nuts, both having the slots already cut for a 2-blade...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Sep 07, 2012 @ 12:08 PM | 12,316 Views

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Posted by Sandancer | Jun 26, 2011 @ 11:24 PM | 26,931 Views
I haven't decided yet which direction I plan to go with the Landing Gear, but right now it may either be the Global VQ's, or the RCSkyLite 60-120 Pro oleo's? If I use the VQ's it will have to be a combination of the P-40 60's for the mains, and one of the P-51 struts for the nose gear.

The RCSkyLites, on the other hand, would be a total fit! Some mods will need to be done to all 3 pieces, mainly linkage connections. The mains will not need any mod's for length, but the nose strut might need some shortening. At this point I am thinking I might tig weld an arm to the strut to use as a steering arm?
The springs will need to be changed out as they are a bit stiff for the weight of the T-28.

All this is preliminary ideas, so until I can shift my attention to the Trojan, they may change?

UP-DATE 6/30/2011: I got the E-Flite 60-120 Nose Gear Steering Arm in today, and with some mods, I think it will work in conjunction with the RCSkyLites, and the Robart 2 1/4" Goodyears.


UP-DATE 7/17/2011: I was able to get some more work done on the Landing Gear on the T-28 this weekend.


I started on the nose gear assembly, and decided at this time I would continue to use the PZ312 E-Tract I had already modified. If it proves to be not up to the task, it will be a simple up-grade to a PZ514. Because the E-Flite 60-120 nose steering assembly was more stable then the stock, I needed to do two things.
First the original plastic mount had to be...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Jun 09, 2011 @ 01:56 AM | 28,122 Views
This is my "Un-Boxing & Evaluation of the FMS 1400mm Air Force T-28 Trojan!



I have to say, FMS continues to up the ante every time they release a new plane, and the T-28 Trojan is no exception!

I again ordered the airframe kit as I already have all the electronic items I will need for this build including the various 12 servos this plane requires. For those who are not into the "building thingie" I would suggest getting the ARF, as there are a couple of items that some may not want to mess with. Most notably....the nose gear assembly, and the wiring harnesses. Having already built the B-25 I have some idea how all the linkages should be routed and set up in the nose gear. The only problem I can see at this time might be the nose gear strut? Only time will tell if that proves to be true?

All the Y-harnesses are clearly marked so if time is taken to carefully follow each route then there shouldn't be any problems. I did notice on mine that the two LED Beacon leads were marked #2?

I ordered the Air Force version and the silver is not the same shade as my previous silver birds are? It's more of a Gunmetal/Silver so I guess I'll be doing some mixing to see what I can come up with, as I know I'll need some touching up to do.

The cowl flaps don't look to complicated, but to really make them functional I'll be opening up the air channels a bit. That and doing a little channeling around the engine cylinders should help increase...Continue Reading
Posted by Sandancer | Jun 06, 2011 @ 10:13 PM | 28,280 Views
This is my Squadron of Pilots.





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UP-DATE 4/23/2013: A new pilot arrived today and he's taken up space in the barracks!


He's the 1/8 scale WWII *U.S. Marine/Navy Full-Figured pilot out of the stables of Scale Pilots USA. He's a perfect scale fit in both the FMS P-51 "B" & "D" cockpits, although some foam will need to be removed from the "B's" forward section to clear his nicely detailed boots.

*Matt painted this one for me in the Marine/Navy livery, but he can be painted in whatever livery you choose.


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Early on during my build of the FMS V3 P-51 apply named "Auntie Samantha" I felt uneasy about disgracing her with such a gaudy looking pilot! One reference was made that he resembled something out of "Avatar". I thought he looked like something out of Disney, so I named him "Goofie"! A name that has stuck ever since!

On my quest to find a suitable replacement for "Goofie" I came across the ESM 1/7 scale WWII Pilots.*NOTE* TroyBuiltModels list them as 1/6 scale, but they are the same dimensions: 74mmW x 73mmH. For the P-51 I chose the ESM WWII British Pilot. For the P-47, and the Corsiar, I decided to slide the ESM WWII American Pilotin the seats of both of them. I also took possession of the ESM WWII German Pilot, but have yet to place him in anything?

During my build of the Starmax...Continue Reading