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Old Oct 03, 2009, 08:44 AM
Soaring Circuits
rcbrust's Avatar
Coopersburg, PA
Joined Sep 2001
1,974 Posts
Discussion
Radian "Must Do" Mods

Guys,

I'm looking to pick up a Radian for altimeter testing. Both of my e-sailplanes are out of commission and I won't have time for repairs until the winter.

I've perused all of the Radian threads but I'd like to know what you Radian owners think the abolute must do mods are for this model, right out of the box. If you think none are necessary, please note that too.

I do have an assortment of Graupner and Aero-Naut props that I can use to replace the standard ones. That seems to be popular.

Thanks,
Randy
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Old Oct 03, 2009, 11:02 AM
Good, fast or cheap, pick two
robh's Avatar
Napa, California
Joined Jul 2006
2,604 Posts
Hi Randy,

I'm sure you are going to get a wide variety of answers on this one, but here's a couple that come to mind.

1. Replace the "thumbscrew" connectors where the pushrods meet the control surface horns. One of mine just snapped off in my hand while barely tightening it.

2. Depending on if you like to fly to the reaches of your vision (who doesn't?) changing the underside color of the wing would be helpful - paint, tape, whatever else you might prefer

3. Eventually the prop... I've still got the original on mine, and expect to replace it soon! So far, it works fine though.

I've got the version that required adding RX, Battery and radio, so I can't speak to any possible modifications that might be done with respect to them.

Lastly, and I haven't done this yet but may get around to it, flaps would be a great addition.

Cheers!

Rob
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Old Oct 03, 2009, 04:31 PM
Balsa + glue + bluesky= fun
leaktech's Avatar
Phoenix AZ USA
Joined Jan 2009
815 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by robh
Hi Randy,

I'm sure you are going to get a wide variety of answers on this one, but here's a couple that come to mind.

1. Replace the "thumbscrew" connectors where the pushrods meet the control surface horns. One of mine just snapped off in my hand while barely tightening it.

2. Depending on if you like to fly to the reaches of your vision (who doesn't?) changing the underside color of the wing would be helpful - paint, tape, whatever else you might prefer

3. Eventually the prop... I've still got the original on mine, and expect to replace it soon! So far, it works fine though.

I've got the version that required adding RX, Battery and radio, so I can't speak to any possible modifications that might be done with respect to them.

Lastly, and I haven't done this yet but may get around to it, flaps would be a great addition.

Cheers!



Rob
Rob,
For a long lived Radian I suggest the prop replacement, new dubro quick connects on the feather horns, make sure the wires are out of the way of the spinning motor, and don't let the wing seperate in flight. None of these will add much weight. I did the magnet thing on the wing. Velcro may be a lighter mod on the wing root.
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Old Oct 04, 2009, 10:37 AM
Soaring Circuits
rcbrust's Avatar
Coopersburg, PA
Joined Sep 2001
1,974 Posts
Thanks guys. BTW, I'll be making some rate of climb measurements with an altimeter with the stock configuration and then with some different props. I'll post what I find.

Thanks,
Randy
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Old Oct 04, 2009, 06:08 PM
just go FLY !!
brn-grose's Avatar
Jasper, TN
Joined May 2004
1,190 Posts
Randy, are you testing a new Ram unit? i have a Ram2 and will be installing it in my brand new Radian. i have some monokote trim sheets to add black stripes on the bottom of the wings. i too replaced the stock pushrod connectors with dubro mini's. i really like the way my Radian floats.

Brian
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Old Oct 04, 2009, 07:27 PM
Soaring Circuits
rcbrust's Avatar
Coopersburg, PA
Joined Sep 2001
1,974 Posts
Hi Brian,

I'm testing the new CAM's, my competition altimeter for the new height limited format.

If you get a chance, post your climb rates and we'll see how they compare to what I get.

Randy
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Old Oct 10, 2009, 05:17 PM
LSF - IV
Hostage-46's Avatar
United States, TX, Highland Village
Joined Jan 2003
3,234 Posts
Just fly it...

Randy I now have a just about a year of flying my Radian. Still original prop believe it or not.

And would you believe I've managed to fly it without adding spoilers, flaps, magnets, clips, velcro, carbon ... bla bla bla

But seriously folks ....
-Move the CG back, I think I ended up with 14 grams in the tail.
-Yes color under the wing
-I eventually swapped my joiner with a hollow carbon tube after the original one splintered, ended up adding a steel rod to that so so now I have ballast...
-I use magnets to hold the stab in for quick tapeless assembly
-Beware the wires near that out runner motor, they will chew through the insulation and short them out if your not careful

I personally would not do ANYTHING to the wing, this airplane flys so well.

On several threads I've seen reports of wings coming off in flight. We were at the field today discussing this issue, nobody in my club has seen this, but we are all sailplane pilots and that's how we fly the Radian.

You're gonna love this ship...enjoy!
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Old Oct 11, 2009, 07:31 AM
RIP Ric
Andy W's Avatar
Marietta, GA
Joined Jun 1999
43,312 Posts
Did you not change out the control horn fasteners?
..a
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Old Oct 11, 2009, 10:55 AM
LSF - IV
Hostage-46's Avatar
United States, TX, Highland Village
Joined Jan 2003
3,234 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy W
Did you not change out the control horn fasteners?
..a
Honestly I have not. I leave the rudder attached, so I rarely touch it. I slide the stab into place use the thumb screw. I've just never got around to it...

I suppose when I finally drop the little thumb screw in the grass I'll be forced to get off my lazy tailpipe and swap it... kind of like the prop...
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Old Oct 11, 2009, 09:09 PM
Registered User
Joined Dec 2007
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I don't understand what the problem is with the thumbscrew connectors. I have not had a bit of trouble with them on two different Radians and hours of flight time.
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Old Oct 12, 2009, 08:20 AM
RIP Ric
Andy W's Avatar
Marietta, GA
Joined Jun 1999
43,312 Posts
I lost my first radian as the thumb screw broke at the top of a climb, and I had no elevator control. Less than a dozen flights on it. It was quite a crash, as the model came straight in from around 1500'.

Dozens of people have reported these breaking when adjusting the linkages..
..a
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Old Oct 12, 2009, 12:46 PM
Soaring Circuits
rcbrust's Avatar
Coopersburg, PA
Joined Sep 2001
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Well, I was hoping to fly the Radian Sunday but the breeze never died down in my area. It wasn't bad, but I like calmer conditions for the first flight of any model.

Anyway, right now it is completely stock except for one minor addition. And that is, I added extra pieces of high quality clear packing tape (3" x 3/4") over the stock ones used to hold the stab in position. I don't think I've seen anyone mention those in any of the various Radian threads, unless I just missed it, but it just didn't sit right with me, relying on those 4 small pieces of tape that they provide.

Most likely my next mod will be to change out the thumbscrews for another method of connecting the pushrods to the horns. I know that some guys have used them without any problem but they just don't sit right with me either.

After that, I'm thinking of replacing the stab tape with nylon screws so it can be easily removed and reattached with automatic alignment.

I would like to mention something about my battery/charger. I let it run through its charge/balance cycle and just for the heck of it, I decided to check the individual cell voltages. The highest and lowest voltage cells differed by ~0.14V which is not acceptable in my book. I ran another balance cycle on it and they improved to ~0.12V difference.

I then charged each cell individually on a good charger and the highest voltage cell took about 50mAh. The lowest voltage cell took about 170mAh so they were definitely not very well balanced. I just ordered the adapter I need so I can charge it on my CellPro charger. I won't be using the stock charger anymore. Just thought I'd give a word of warning.

Randy
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Old Oct 12, 2009, 03:29 PM
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tomcat5109's Avatar
USA, TX, Houston
Joined Mar 2004
296 Posts
Yep. My stock battery was about that far out of balance too. A couple of sessions with my Cellpro balanced it just fine. I plan to fly the maiden voyage the week after the TNT contest in Dallas.

Has anyone, other than Jim Duda, reinforced the fuselage area above the the wing?

Tommy
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Old Oct 12, 2009, 05:36 PM
LSF - IV
Hostage-46's Avatar
United States, TX, Highland Village
Joined Jan 2003
3,234 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy W
I lost my first radian as the thumb screw broke at the top of a climb, and I had no elevator control. Less than a dozen flights on it. It was quite a crash, as the model came straight in from around 1500'.

Dozens of people have reported these breaking when adjusting the linkages..
..a
It is pretty flimsy ... I need to get to that...
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Old Oct 13, 2009, 07:34 PM
scb28
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Rocklin, CA
Joined Jan 2006
433 Posts
4 things I did to mine:

1. REPLACE THE PROP BLADES!!

2. Put magnets in the wings to hold 'em together. Tape works fine too.

3. Replaced the control surface connecters w/ DuBro easy connectors. Highly recommend this.

4. Added a small amount to weight to the tail to move cg aft. This would be personal preference.


My 2 cents, scb28
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