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Old May 27, 2002, 11:31 PM
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slinges's Avatar
Clemson, SC and Roanoke, Virginia
Joined Apr 2002
44 Posts
Zero woes

Ok, I may be a little bit over-anxious to up my flying skills, but hey...I had a real good salesman....after about two weeks of flying my Tiger Moth, it started to get a little bit too easy to fly. So...after a bit of convincing, I decided to get a Zero and try my hand at that. Bought the GWS flight pack to go with it.

First thing I did was to sand the ugly mold divots off. I can't stand those. After that, I tried to paint it gray, but couldn't get the paint to cover it. So, I painted it black (I now have a night fighter). No biggie...I dont't think I added too much weight because I removed the paint that was already on there.

Construction went reasonably smooth, until it came time to screw the wing on. I just couldn't get the bolt into that nut. Eventually, the block of foam surrounding the nut fell off, so my dad and I glued on a block of wood and used an aluminum wood screw to fasten the wing on.

Then I tried to fly it....

My first flight (hand launch) went Okay, I did a nice climbout, then into a smooth turn, then coming back toward me, suddenly lost altitude and crashed into the grass. Broken prop, battery smashed through the firewall, and a crack in the fuselage. I didn't have a replacement prop the same size, so I tried both a 9x7 and a 10x4.7, but neither would make enough power. Also every time I toss the plane, the battery moves and throws off the CG. I've ordered some 3-bladed props for it, should be here by the end of the week.

What should I do to make this thing fly good? It seems like it SHOULD still fly, even with the different props, but it just doesn't want to stay in the air. I'll hand launch, it'll go about 5 feet, turn to the left, stall, then crash. Is this just because of the props, or am I misssing something crucial?

Stephen
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Old May 28, 2002, 01:16 AM
Registered User
Oxford, MS
Joined Apr 2002
1,134 Posts
As far as your first crash I have no idea of what could have caused it. Unless you turned downwind after your climb out. But as far as afterwards what your describing is called tipstall which the zero is notorious for. It almost always tipstalls to the left which leads me to believe it has to do with the thrust angle of the motor. The easy fix for it is to adjust both your ailerons so they are slightly raised which adds washout and prevents tipstalling. The zero is also CG sensitive and the CG in the book is wrong. It should be 45-50mm from the leading edge of the wing. If your battery is sliding back when you launch it is almost definitely affecting your CG which causes it to become tail heavy and tipstalling. I'd recommend putting a small foam block behind the battery to prevent it from sliding backwards. Also if your using the recommended battery then the CG may still be too far aft. Other flyers on here have found that taping two quarters inside the front cowl fixes this.
Also as far as power make sure your prop shaft wasn't bent in the first crash. If it was even slightly it will cause a huge loss of power.
Also one more note, the Zero likes to fly fast. I'm currently flying mine on a homemade 8x700AAC nicad pack and a direct drive speed 400 swinging a 6x4 prop.
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Old May 28, 2002, 07:07 AM
Senior Moment Member
Virginia Beach, Va.
Joined Jan 2002
1,233 Posts
Quote:
I'll hand launch, it'll go about 5 feet, turn to the left, stall, then crash.
I don't have a Zero but that sounds like a pretty typical power on stall. I think it's going about 5 feet, stalling when you pull the nose up, and then rolling left.
Tractor mounted airplanes will almost always roll left when a stall occurs at full power due to the P-Factor. And if you don't have rudder, or a lot of altitude you won't be able to recover from the ensuing spiral that develops.

Try just maintaining level flight when you hand launch until you've built up enough airspeed to increase AOA. Easy on the climb until you've got some airspeed or she'll stall and roll left every time.

From what I've been reading on the posts the Zero has a pretty high stall speed, flies more like full scale than most models, and she's not very forgiving of pilot error, as you would expect from a warbird.

just my opinion......

Jimmy
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Old May 28, 2002, 07:29 AM
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cfossa's Avatar
Stow, MA
Joined Mar 2002
1,041 Posts
Stephen,

I've broken all the same things on my Zero ... at least twice. Some things I've learned with the Zero:

1. Get the cg to about 48-50 mm vs. the 55-65 mm in the instructions and it will be much more stable.

2. I use a small piece of foam to jam behind my battery and keep it from moving.

3. Keep up speed in your turns to keep it from stalling.

4. I've been doing ROG take off and landings and have not had problems stalling on takeoff. I did have stalling on landing until I moved the cg forward. Now it glides in fine, just keep it a little hot.

I'd get some more 8x10 props instead of the 3-blade ones. There have been a few posts here with people trying different props and 8x10 seems to be doing the best, 9x7 flyable, 3-blade flyable.

Good luck.

Carl
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Old May 28, 2002, 09:24 AM
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Seneca,SC
Joined Sep 2001
91 Posts
slinges,
I'm using an 8x550 nimh pack and it really has alot of kick in the Zero. The 6 and 7 cell packs I tried first made the Zero feel a little marginal on power. The transition from tmoth to Zero is a big one. When you master the Zero, there won't be many planes you can't handle. Keep up your speed in the turns, and beware the tip stall.
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Old May 28, 2002, 05:22 PM
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Clemson, SC and Roanoke, Virginia
Joined Apr 2002
44 Posts
Thanks for all your advice. I'll try moving the CG forward and getting the landing gear to be stable enough for a ROG takeoff. I fly at a full-scale airport, so I have plenty of room for a takeoff :-)
Stephen
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