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jokeane's blog
Posted by jokeane | Aug 04, 2008 @ 10:43 AM | 2,267 Views
Got a chance to log a few more Sky Cat flights this weekend. I tried new props; an 11x8, 12x6 and an 11x7. I like the 11x7 best. Good balance of speed to thrust.

Also tried some new battery packs from United Hobbies, 2200 3S lipo packs rated at 25C. Very nice performance / value for the price.

Now that I've got majority of the 'bugs' worked out of the 'Cat, I'm really liking it. It handles a bit of wind with no problem. Take offs and landings are easy.

The black and yellow color scheme works pretty well, but I think for a future one I'd go with more to distinguish the top and bottom. More stripes on the bottom of the wings for example.
Posted by jokeane | Jul 23, 2008 @ 01:59 PM | 2,198 Views
Went out flying near dusk on Monday. A friend came along to take some photos. Here is a nice one of the Sopwith Camel.
Posted by jokeane | Jul 21, 2008 @ 09:02 AM | 2,204 Views
So I did a pretty significant re-work of the Sky-Cat after getting it home from the maiden flight. Found out that the glue I used for some of the assembly just wasn't working well at all. (Ultimate R/C Foam glue - go figure. Seems to work well on blucore and depron, but not Elapor.)

So I tore much of the plane apart, cleaned off the offending glue, repainted some spots and re-assembled it. For the re-assembly I used medium viscosity CA and kicker. This worked VERY well. All the Elapor joints feel much more solid. Also added a magnet for the battery hatch. I re-hinged the ailerons, I'm much happier with this hinging job than the last.

I dropped the prop down to an APC 11x8 - just to try it out for the next flight.

So it is all set for next flight. Weather seems crap today, but we shall see.
Posted by jokeane | Jul 19, 2008 @ 11:58 AM | 3,262 Views
I got up early today and went to the Badger Prairie field in an attempt to beat the weather (which looks iffy at best today). Badger Prairie aeromodel field is a Dane county park with large grass area for take-off and landing surrounded by a mostly tree-free prairie.

I had three totally new items with me to try out, new Spektrum 6xi radio and two new planes which I had not flown previously.

Winds were 0-5 MPH. Pretty calm, but not totally.

I flew the Green Models / Powerline Sopwith Camel first. I was pleasantly surprised to find it seemed to have plenty of get up and go, even with the tiny little stock brushless motor. When I tested it out static it only pulled 10 Amps, so with a 3C lipo that is only 110 watts input power.

After a bit of trim it flew pretty well, although it may need a bit more weight in the nose. It seemed a tad pitch sensitive, which usually indicates the CG may be a bit aft of where it should be. With my 1700 mAH 3C lipo, it had plenty of juice. I didn't time it, but I flew two roughly 5 minute flights and it didn't seem even close to out of juice.

Flying was very scale-like. Not too slow but not all that fast. The Sopwith would loop happily. Landing was interesting, since with the draggy airframe you needed a fair amount of throttle to keep the plane moving as you bring it in. I did several landings and the large wheels worked quite well on the grass. Ground taxing was pretty good, although I did nose it over once when I taxed a bit fast...Continue Reading
Posted by jokeane | Jul 15, 2008 @ 05:14 PM | 2,343 Views
I finally built my Sky-Cat. Painted it with spray enamel paint. Added carbon fiber stripe in wing and in tail. Could also probably use one in fuse as well.

Powered by:
ESC: CC Pheonix 35
Motor: Turnigy (hextronic) 35-48-B 900kv Brushless Outrunner Eq: AXi 2826
Prop: APC 12x8
WOT Amps 27 w/ 3S 2500 lipo rated at 12C
4x HS-81 servos

all up weight is 2lb 10oz (42 oz, 1192g)

according to the manual, min expected weight is 1100g for gas version.

Things I wouldn't do again - cut elevator and ailerons completely free - not worth the trouble.
Posted by jokeane | Jul 06, 2008 @ 10:30 AM | 2,700 Views
Just finished assembling a Green Models / Powerline Sopwith Camel ARF that I picked up from Hobby Horse.

This balsa ARF comes with motor, ESC and servos for ~$170. Which seemed like a decent price.

For an ARF, it is a pretty advanced assembly. Lots of fiddling around with flying wires and pull-pull controls. Also my kit required a lot of re-shrinking of the covering, and even with a lot of work not every wrinkle was eliminated.

The motor that comes with it seems somewhat under-powered when testing it statically. It comes with a 10x5 prop, and draws 10 amps max with a fully charged 1700 mAH 3S lipo.

Waiting for a nice calm evening to maiden it.

Official review:

Posted by jokeane | Jul 10, 2006 @ 11:58 AM | 6,705 Views
Well I've build and flown my Formosa II. I'm an intermediate flyer / builder. I've been doing R/C planes for about three years.

I've built and flown many other GWS planes; ME-109 (x2), BN-2 Islander, Spitfire. Several of my friends have the Formosa I, and I've seen it flown. I've also built and flown a number of Multiplex foamie kits; TwinJet, MicroJet, Sonic Liner and the Magister.

My setup:

Formosa II w/ brush-on acrylic paint over about 1/3 of the surface.
4 HS-81 servos
Hitec 6 channel reciever
Balsa Products BP30 (Tower Pro 30) amp ESC
Gorrilla Bob's XM2908-10 Brushless motor (similar to Balsa Products motor)
2100 mAH 3S lipo battery
Du-Bro spinner
10x5E APC prop
Handmade motor mount from basswood + included stick.
CG located right on the spar.

All up weight was almost exactly 32 oz (2lbs)

Good news:
* Good looking design
* Easy to build
* Transparent canopy
* Flys well (pretty easy to fly)
* Takes off from grass easily (ROG)

Bad news:
* Very poor manual! (No CG location, no wiring info, no control surface throws, .etc)
* Flimsy cowl plastic (needs to be stiffer)
* Landing gear is a joke. Needs thicker wire / redesign.
* Battery bay isn't large enough to fit most 3S lipo packs, and no way to fix it without dumping stock hatch or chopping into wing. I just left hatch off entirely which isn't very clean aerodynamically.

I flew three total flights, each about 5 min. long. The motor is definitely powerful enough to haul this bird...Continue Reading