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BillyWhiz's blog
Posted by BillyWhiz | Mar 07, 2013 @ 03:00 PM | 1,351 Views
I have to say that I'm never going to waste my time with these guys again!
I'd bought a few jets and other kits from them without any problem, but this time I found out why people are moaning about Banana Hobby..
I paid for a ''airframe, complete'' for the F22 edf jet 50mm size. An impressive two days later the box arrived.. with only a bare fuselage inside. Whaaaat? Where were the wings, tails and nosecone? I emailed BH a few times as they didn't publish a phone number on their website. No response! I did some digging & found a number for them on the better business bureau website - along with over 250 unresolved complaints!!
I called and was amazed that they answered - I selected the 'sales' option so maybe that was why? A guy asked me to 'take a photo of the fuselage and email it on the email from him. He told me casually that any other email enquiries would be ignored.. Wow!
I took a pic and returned his email, I got an email finally about a week later telling me that an internal request for a set of wings etc would be raised and despatched within 4 - 6 working days - they added that they understood I wanted them asap but could offer ''no promises'' :-( for real????

It's a week or so later - no sign of them yet!

Probably the very worse company I've dealt with in the last 20 years - but this will be my last dealings with Banana Hobby - period!
Posted by BillyWhiz | Mar 07, 2013 @ 02:46 PM | 1,269 Views
I have been trying to get dialled into two stick or rather four input flying.. I am enjoying it but it is a little frustrating because it feels like 'learning' or training more than flying.. But, I'm getting a little bloody-minded and I'm just going to keep trying and repairing the Edge in between. On the subject of the lil Edge 540 I'm quite impressed by the fact the motor mount is slightly flexible and I've had three or four pile-ins but it has remained in one piece.. Ditto the motor and shaft - I have bent the alloy motor mount but that bends back level without cracking too.

I have added about 10 grams noseweight and my 500 lipo is as far fwd as poss - mainly because I used larger servos in the tail. My CG is about on the carbon spar and I have maybe 1/2 degree downthrust and a degree right-thrust.

The plane is trimmed as good as I can get it with no odd-looking control surface positions, it flies nicely on 1/2 to 3/4 throttle, but becomes evily pitch sensitive on full throttle - and I'm using 75% expo and 30 each way elevator throws..

I have started to get a harrier of sorts and can now vary the up elevator a little to increase forward airspeed. Steering via the rudder I have managed to get a circuit at 50 or 60 feet but it's really hard on the old neck muscles at that alt.. I think I'm going to try lower next but try to keep the power low and avoid powering out too soon. I am hoping for some calmer weather as I was trying all this in 12 m.p.h. winds yesterday....Continue Reading
Posted by BillyWhiz | Mar 03, 2013 @ 01:29 PM | 1,536 Views
The new Edge airframe arrived - thank you Horizon! I installed new servos and rx since the original started to misbehave on the aileron channel.. She's had her maiden and is trimmed ready for training to recommence! I've had a few seconds hover already and seem to have a good CG for post stall flight.
I don't think I would have made the progress I have without the help of Steve down at Ponto or Don - thanks for the flight, mate! Don let me have a few minutes on his 'Gary' 3d plane and just one lipo and I was hovering - it showed me exactly what CG balance you need for post stall flight.. It is a weird set-up when you first fly but it all makes sense when you slow down and increase your angle of attack!
Can't wait to start flying the new QQ properly...
Posted by BillyWhiz | Feb 25, 2013 @ 04:30 PM | 1,459 Views
Since I was banished from the 'other' flying area I returned to try the site I had my first feeble efforts at re-learning to fly at.. I won't name it but it's cool - no hassles as it's a dog walking area. I have seen guys flying there sporadically.. No one was down there yesterday afternoon and I had a ball with the lil Edge qq
- in fact I realised this was a better field to use conventional take off & landing at.. Wow - wheels on a plane that actually serve a purpose - what a novelty!
This field has a dirt track across the long side, and it's up to serving as a landing strip. I realised all the hours flying close and low have left me well capable of flying at a small site - even set between major roads - as long as the radio stays reliable! Now I'm thinking about getting an F-117 64mm edf kit for the motor esc & servos I have spare - retracts would be cool too..
Posted by BillyWhiz | Feb 24, 2013 @ 01:48 PM | 1,641 Views
O.K. so I drove the four or five miles over to Oceanside yesterday afternoon; to try the Edge after the rebuild - I have been flying there for a couple months as it is a beautiful calm spot that is very relaxing after the bustle of Carlbad & the PCH area.. I found out about this spot from an enquiry on a forum. A guy hooked me up and I flew there a whole bunch of times - mainly keeping myself to myself as I am so over the micro-drama and the usual tittle tattle that goes with the 'club' scene - well my experience anyways from the midlands area in England..
In any small town in the U.K. - let alone club - you're a stranger or outsider until you have lived there at least 20 years - then you're accepted socially - yep, you're a club member!
One of the things that impressed me about So Cal when I first started visiting was just how welcoming and friendly people were - well young people to be more accurate - the only attitude I detected was from more mature folk.
I put that down to my tattoos!
I digress.. Arriving at the field yesterday, I found the twin metal gates shut - first time in two months. I called one of the bods that I know is 'the boss' there at our flying area.. He wouldn't help me with the code so I thanked him(!) and walked in the quarter mile to fly! There is no lock-out situation, just restrictions on vehicular entry.. Returning this morning - a big day at the field - I found my car again locked out. Shiii-it!
I walked in and struggled over to fly...Continue Reading
Posted by BillyWhiz | Feb 24, 2013 @ 09:29 AM | 1,702 Views
I checked the manual & I'm not a million miles out from recommended CG at 45mm. I guess that it depends on the pilot's technique & also the motor thrust angle set-up.. I kind of felt the plane was under-powered but I think that was mainly that I had too much downthrust. I used the broken plastic motor mount re-glued in after the prop blade incident, and I'm used to seeing healthy dobs of downthrust set on power models!
I am using an APC 7 x 4 electric prop because I had no luck with GWS type props - they seem too flexible - it feels like they don't handle too much torque but as I said - many roads to Rome..
With the new bulkhead/motor mount & an almost neutral thrust set-up I have plenty of power and a great balance. Studying the new fuselage with the plastic motor mount pre-fitted, I notice that it's moulded to incorporate a degree or two right sidethrust. I won't try to change that but it'll be interesting to compare the feel of the two 540's... Awaiting a big order from HobbyKing via their International warehouse - Orange rx's, up-rated escs for my F22 and new 540qq plus about 8 lipos and another charger. I selected a watt meter too and a set of sub micro servos for the new Edge..
Posted by BillyWhiz | Feb 23, 2013 @ 10:09 PM | 1,610 Views
I had one of those days today when I made one step back but two forward..
It came about in a funny way - I was on my second flight of the morning with the lil Edge - it was breezy, maybe 8 to 10 mph, and after some tight low basic loops and rolls slammed together (the tiny Edge begs to be man-handled, especially in the wind) - I flew behind my head and lost my bearings - result a vertical pile-in!
Undaunted I discarded the battered cowl (with it's 8 grams noseweight inside) & bent the motor back to where it was approximately. I re-launched and 'bingo' what a fantastic difference the result - the rearward CG and lighter weight transformed the plane.. I did a tight loop at 50 feet, into an outside tight loop and hit stall speed at just the right attitude - I hovered for a second before falling out left.. I landed the Edge and boy, it was sooo slow I could have caught it!

Back home, I fabbed a new ply/foam firewall and hot glued it in place, I bent the alloy motor mount level and set it into my bulkhead at zero sidethrust and about a half degree downthrust. My CG was at 45mm from the L.E. & the flying weight was 227 grams.

I charged the lipos and headed back to the field with a feeling today I was going to learn something important.. I was expecting to have to retrim so I cheated by adding some left aileron trim b4 launching. It didn't need it so I climbed vertically and dialled out a few clicks of left ail..
The plane was transformed, soooo responsive still but...Continue Reading
Posted by BillyWhiz | Feb 19, 2013 @ 12:07 PM | 2,017 Views
..but hey, there's nothing wrong with being keen and really enjoying learning to be a better model pilot huh?

I should tell you I flew a bit in the 1970s & 80s but the radio gear was unreliable - at least over in the English midlands it was! We had CB radio as the new fad in England in the eighties & that coincided with many an uncontrollable r.c. airplane.. Fast fwd a couple hazy decades and, newly relocated to So Cal, I started hankering for another go at R.C. - hopefully without the expensive interference this time.

Three months later I now own about eight planes (that my wife knows about) and I'm probably the scourge of my local field for tearing around with my jets! I remember these guys at the field telling me that I might be able to fly a jet with a few months training on a Bixler or Super Cub.. Hmm, that sounded a bit boring - I did buy an AXN floater jet powered glider from H.K. and within a few weeks I had repaired it 10 times learning inverted figure eight circuits.

I purchased a F35 edf jet from Banana.. before the AXN if I remember..
When I plucked up courage and gave it a try I was amazed I could fly it better than I could the AXN.. well it looked better in the air!

I put a lot of stick time on the F35 as it was a great flyer in any wind conditions, I soon got used to basic aeros - loops, rolls and split S's.. I found flying inverted much easier on the jet - OK I had a few prangs due to loosing orientation and flying too far away while low.....Continue Reading