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        Firebat...Short and Final

#1 AMTJIM Apr 05, 2004 10:51 AM

Firebat...Short and Final
Hello, just thought I would let everyone know that a friend has gotten word from Tower that the firebat is on it's way out. The standard kit was featured for several weeks in the daily sale and was yanked today at the ending price of 25.88. It's still listed as this price and I bought 2 of them. The deluxe kit is now in the daily sale.
If anyone is interested in participating, we can go step by step to assemble one of the best versions of this plane via a GWS geardrive and micro gear. An unpainted lipo or KAN version can be assembled to fly at 12~14 oz. For some additional flight performance, you can also purchase a spare set of vertical stabs to be used in place of the stock canards, but it's not necessary.
Forget all the poor reports you have heard on this plane and watch this version jump out of your hand.
We can begin in 2 weeks to give time for anyone interested in participating to get their firebats ordered.
I'll place a small list of the equipment I am going to use later so everyone will be on the same page.

#2 isvana Apr 06, 2004 12:40 PM

$26 for a canard ARF...
... has to be a bargain. Can use cheapo $10 std servos too. Mine has been a great intermediate learning plane: highly recommended (for intermediate pilots)!

#3 RCParkflyer Apr 06, 2004 02:04 PM

Bought the delux kit over the winter and haven't built it yet, I'll be waiting for your parts list

#4 classic_742 Apr 06, 2004 02:24 PM

cg with lipos and micro servos
It sounds good, but what about the cg? That plane is notorious for being tail heavy and if your not using standard servos you end up having to add weight. with micro servos and lipos I cant imagine it balancing unless you put lead in the nose. Maybe up to a couple ounces worth. My firebat had the 8 cell pack all the way to the servos and still needed weight in the nose. Ill be anxious to see how you guys come out. Mine is still sitting after some white knuckle maidens. To me even at the sale price its not worth it when you consider all the tinkering you will have to do to get it flying. Good luck guys keep us posted..:)

#5 isvana Apr 06, 2004 05:18 PM

Classic - presumably Antjim is going to show us how to build the flyweight version of the Firebat! Should be interesting.

FYI mine is stock except I use a 3S LiPo (TP2100 or Ko1500) all forward, and a micro RX, to come out at ~20oz. I suspect the general advice for lightweight Firebats is to put the RX in the nose (and wire the servo's on building the fuselage accordingly!). I'm curious to know if a non-std servo can do the 50ozft (?) torque needed for the canard, or whether this need is reduced if you use a geared-down (ie maybe more sedate flying) motor. This is certainly a challenging fly though - tucks down in a dive, unforgiving in a stall on landing, takes a while to get on the step on launch etc... :eek: :D

#6 AMTJIM Apr 06, 2004 06:06 PM

This is not an experiment for me, I have done this very sucessfully several times. This Firebat will fly like no other. After we acomplish this build, I am going to build a version with the powerplant in the nose.
Here's what I am going to use:
GWS EPS 350 with the "C" ratio(5.33:1)
This set-up provides a wide variety of battery choices according to prop selection. At the low end, 14 oz of thrust can be achieved with this gearbox from 7.2 V which means a 2S lipo can be used. On the other end of the spectrum, for SHORT full throttle bursts a 9.6 V pack or 3S lipo can be used for almost 19 OZ of thrust. Other battery choices are the 2/3AA KAN 650 or a 2/3 A pack like the 600AE or KAN1050, choose you number of cells. This gearbox also provides good speed and response.
Here is a link to a chart for the 350 C performance:
This project can be easily accomplished with a 6~8 cell KAN 650 or 6~8 2/3 A cells. The K650 will be OK as a flat pack, but for ease when using a 2/3 A cell, I suggest only a 7 cell pack in pyramid config of 3 on 4, this was very successful before. Lipos are all different sizes, I am going with an Etec 1200 in either a 2s2p or 3s fashion, make sure it can handle the amps your running. What ever battery you choose, try to keep small for placement and under 6 oz, below 3 oz may need a touch of nose ballast. In regards to battery choice, they will all be placed in the same basic area.
For ESC, this is your choice according to your current and battery voltage. Again keep it light, a non-brake GWS 100 did fine on 7 cells with the 350 motor, I may go with the C-20 for the higher cell count for use with a 3s lipo. Moutning the ESC outside the plane really helps for cooling.
I am going with servos in the size range of the HS-55, this project has had success with GWS pico servos upto HS-81. For what we are trying to accomplish, I suggest HS-55 or smaller.
For RX i am only going to use a GWS 4 channel of 300M(1000ft) range.
Additional items I will be using are the Robart 1/2A pin hinges for the ailerons, Dubro Micro horns for the ailerons and dubro mirco pushrods in place of the stock push rods. I like to slice the ailerons off, they work much better hinged, you could even upgrade to some FFF ailerons, but the stock works fine. This is just my preference, feel free to use the tape on the ailerons and other stock items.
We may run into some additional items that are needed, I will let you know if that happens.
When I receive my Firebats, I will start the process with pics and display a little each evening.

#7 helijim Apr 08, 2004 12:31 AM

thanks for the heads-up on the firebat...just ordered 2....

#8 AMTJIM Apr 08, 2004 12:55 AM

Well if the Ex Feds feel upitty, my Bats should be here tomorrow. Is everyone else geeting theirs ordered?...

#9 AMTJIM Apr 08, 2004 03:42 PM

They're heeeeere. I'll start it up in a few days, takes some pics. I am going to start with the ailerons and their push rods.

#10 AMTJIM Apr 15, 2004 08:55 PM

OK, I finally got the chance to start it up tonight, I'll post some pics later. Looks like you guys have bought several of these, they are now listed as "limited quantities".
I have, with a sharp new razor, sliced off the ailerons. Do it slowly following the mold marks so you only have to make 1 pass in each direction and don't get a wavy or multiple sliced cut. The cut needs to be perpendicular with the wing for good hinge mounting . I then place a bead of scotch tape just a hair away from the edge of the leading edge of the aileron and trailing of the wing. This is done on the upper surface only, in case of an accident or a bad landing, it helps with keeping the hinges from tearing through the top surface. As you can see, the lower side of the wing and aileron have a molded angle along with a deep mold mark for a dowel torque rod. We will be using the upper portion of these surfaces, the area we sliced through as the hinge mount surface. The Robart 1/2A hinge point needle type hinges are what we are using, they come 15 to a pack, you can use 6 or 7 per wing.
To mount these hinges, use a length of piano wire or something similar with a sharpened tip. Whatever you choose, try to use something about 1/2 the diameter of the hinge, if your choice is to large, even though the hinges will be held in with glue, the teeth on the hinges won't grab the foam. Try to push in the piano wire square from all sides and don't poke through the top surface, make sure the hinges holes all line up. Because the inboard and outboard aileron tips see alot of action, I use 2 hinges in those areas and 2 ~ 3 spaced out in the area between those. The measurement for the tip hinges are 1/4" from edge and 1 1/2" from edge. The remaing 2 or 3(you choose) divide the space in between evenly. Using a bit of adhesive(you choose, I used foam CA, some foam CA still eats this plane for some reason, be careful)glue hinges into one side, add glue to other and press parts together. For the torque rod, I am using Dubro micro control horns, so I didn't use the stock torque rod, I used bamboo skewer. The point of the bamboo is now more of a flex limiter. I brush on some 5 min epoxy into the mold mark and set the bamboo in place.
On the inboard top side of the ailerons, I epoxy down a 1" square 1/16 piece of ply, this will be the control horn mount pad. The micro control horns have teeth so a small hole will be drill into this ply to mount the horn later.
Pics to come later.

#11 AMTJIM Apr 15, 2004 10:19 PM

3 Attachment(s)
wing build pics

#12 AMTJIM Apr 17, 2004 01:39 AM

3 Attachment(s)
Today, I installed the Dubro micro control horns and the Dubro micro pushrods, these are a little lighter and more flexible than the stock push rods. Insert the pushrods into the shielding and lay them into the tracks, the pushrods should be pulled back to the wood control horn mount pads on the ailerons to get an idea of control horn mounting. I made the hole for the horn 3/16 outboard and 3/16 aft, measuring from the fwd inboard corners(see pics). Positioned here, inward spring tension holds the rod inplace along with the little keepers(not installed in pics) that comes with the pushrod kit, heat shrink could be used in place of keepers if your using spare or recycled pushrods. As you can see in the pics, there are yellow streaks in the pushrod tracks, those are bits of shielding glued in place. The fwd and aft pieces are 2 inches long and the center pieces are 1 inch. The aft tips of the aft pieces are mounted just were the aft portion of the tracks end. The fwd tips of the fwd pieces are flush with the face of the brake. and the mid portions and just centered between the fwd and aft. You can see the pushrods installed, don't cut them for now. We will cut them later whe nthe final position of everything is determined.

#13 randall8200 Apr 17, 2004 08:10 PM

3 more days
I too will be the proud owner of a new foxbat in a few days..love the mods

#14 randall8200 Apr 17, 2004 08:23 PM

foxbat mods
1 Attachment(s)
Brushless Set 400

Includes: Fun 400-23 brushless motor; Smile 30-6-12 ESC.

For direct drives up to 10 cells.

Recommended for small aerobatic planes such as the Great Planes FirebatTM.

Significantly more power for Speed 400 applications.

#15 BLAZE242 Apr 17, 2004 08:32 PM

i just got mine this plane is a piece of xxxx! i never even got it up in the air. i accedently dropped it from my table and the front fuselage broke in half, one of my canards was cracked!! this thing is too damned fragile!! i wish i could get my money back!!

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