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Old Feb 03, 2013, 01:57 AM
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HK sailboats for a novice

Hi there guys,
I am looking into a 1 meter sailplane. Since I am novice I don't need something special or racing sailplane.
I was wondering about those ships from HobbyKing.

1) RC Sailboat Phantom-1.89m
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...tom_1_89m.html

2) RC 1.8mtr Monsoon Sailboat 90% RTR
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...at_90_RTR.html

3) RC Sailboat Legend
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...at_Legend.html

Right now the only thing I am sure about them is that they cost about the same, and they have about the same dimensions. They weight from 1,4 to 3,4 kilos. I can't tell about the quality on them.

Any thoughts or recommendations?
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Last edited by orck; Feb 03, 2013 at 02:22 AM.
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Old Feb 03, 2013, 10:19 AM
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Joined Oct 2011
682 Posts
Use the search function on the forums...enter the name of a boat and you will find lots of info.
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Old Feb 03, 2013, 01:16 PM
If it floats....sail it!
FoamCrusher's Avatar
Elk Grove, CA
Joined Sep 2002
4,193 Posts
Rather than a boat from HK, I strongly suggest you consider a boat from one of the companies like Aquacraft that sell spare parts for their boats.

A boat like the Aquacraft Vela may be initially a little more expensive, but plenty of spare parts are available. See http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...I=AQUB0200&P=Z as an example.

If you break a mission critical part on a HK boat, unless you can fabricate another yourself, the boat is out of commission, since HK does not sell spares for their boats.

FC
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Old Feb 03, 2013, 02:18 PM
Boomer1
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United States, CA, Temecula
Joined Sep 2009
3,564 Posts
The boats you are considering are well known to this forum. Doby suggests using the search feature of this forum to find reports and/or discussions on each of these boats. If you take time to do that, you will be way ahead and be armed with knowledge on the strengths and weaknesses of each of those boats.

These boats have become popular for folks like yourself interested in getting into RC sailing primarily because of the low purchase price and the graphics Hobby King puts on their boats. They are eye catching for sure and the price is very attractive for sure.

"FC" shared that Hobby King generally speaking does not offer or provide parts for their sailboats and in regard to their boats, their concept of customer service or factory warranty is at best a work of fiction. I am not slamming HK just sharing well known facts. To be fair they do sell some good products and much of the time there are few if any problems on many of their items.

The boats you mention are in fact not a bad deal if you are handy and are aware of those things these boats need to correct several issues that come along with them from the factory. The issues can be addressed and it won't cost much to make the "fixes".

A quick summary of the most glaring issues: Their hatches typically leak, and need to be modified so they don't. The Phantom and the Legend have better hatch set ups than the Monsoon. The running rigging is the largest short coming and are the same on all these boats. Their masts are too flexible and need to be reinforced. Their keels are often a loose fit which can lead to leaks and perhaps ill handling.

These boats require a radio, receiver and battery holder which HK sells a number of inexpensive choices. If you will read the many posts on these boats
you will be able to make an informed choice. I had a Monsoon as my 2nd rc boat and once I made the repairs or fixes it was a fun boat - I sailed for 2.5 years without issues. Sold it to a friend and he still sails it.

Just be aware of how HK operates and if you opt to get one of these boats, you will at least know what you are dealing with.

Boomer
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Old Feb 03, 2013, 06:27 PM
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Australia, TAS, Penguin
Joined Mar 2012
550 Posts
An Australian forum specialises in the HobbyKing boats
www.shipshaperc.com

Also the Goolwa Radio Yacht club (South Australia) runs Phantoms as a class
http://rcyachting.scoastmac.org.au/

Here is a brief video of a couple of HK boats mixing it with some A Class boats yesterday - Monsoon and Surmount are the smaller boats
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=j9eyBAFZhNk

Monsoon montage
Monsoon Montage (4 min 40 sec)


A bit of onboard video - Monsoons at close quarters.... great fun...
Close Monsoon Racing (0 min 46 sec)


And a few HK boats together
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=cWLi_b1x2Og
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Old Feb 03, 2013, 11:53 PM
Taking care of the pond.
MILLERTIME's Avatar
United States, CA, Sanger
Joined Apr 2004
7,372 Posts
The Aquacraft Vela is not a 1 meter class boat.
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Old Feb 04, 2013, 06:24 AM
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Blackpool, Lancs
Joined Feb 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MILLERTIME View Post
The Aquacraft Vela is not a 1 meter class boat.
Probably one reason why makers of such boats rate them by overall height rather than overall length, saves confusing them with actual class racers. That doesn't stop them being good fun for a gentleman sailer to take for a walk at the pondside in the appropriate weather.
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Old Feb 04, 2013, 09:33 AM
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Wilson, NC
Joined Jun 2006
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I have been sailing weekly with 3 noobs, one with a Phantom and two Velas. They both sail quite well and handle a variety of conditions. Both boats would benifit from modifications to the standing rigging and the addition of adjustable rigging such as a topping lift, etc. You can even get new sails for them from Carr Sails. He has been discussing the Vela sails on the Vela thread.

Tower carries the Vela (as previously stated) and the Phantom is available from HK through the USA Warehouse (when not on backorder) for a rediculously low price. I have one on order for about $123 shipped. Problem is who knows when it will be in stock.

I do not think you can go wrong with either of these boats for recreational sailing and even an occasional gentlemans race. It would not take much for the Vela to become an AMYA class boat and I found a web site, down under, that races the Phantom and their web site is chock full of good info.

http://www.rcyachting.scoastmac.org.au/

Regards,
Dick
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Old Feb 09, 2013, 08:28 AM
Build straight - Fly twisty
Whiskers's Avatar
Australia, QLD, Little Mountain
Joined Feb 2010
4,408 Posts
A mod I did to my HK Sailor, before it got anywhere the water, was to replace the standing rigging.
The supplied stuff was much too stretchy for my taste and when off the boat it had an amazing ability to tangle up with itself and its companions.
I'm very happy with Nylon covered SS fishing leader for all the stays and shrouds.
Stronger, no stretch and no tangle... no problems.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 05:17 AM
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Joined Mar 2011
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So I have a Surmount on the way. I was thinking of making a bracket for adjustable mast and jib placement. Could do it easily with some angled aluminum. Figure I will also move the shaft on the rudder more forward so it is off center. Replace the rigging. Make the hatch fit water tight. Put some bracing in the haul. Anything else needed?

Been reading more and more and no matter what boat one gets modding is done.Not to worried about this purchase. Just hope it does not come with a bunch of surprize extra fee's like a recent buy I made from a store in the states.

Look out for FEDEX! I had to pay taxes 1 and a half months after I got my package and got dung a $10 fee as a handling charge. Not sure why I was not asked to pay the Taxes at the door FEDEX=Scammers
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 07:45 AM
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Australia, TAS, Penguin
Joined Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by litehawkdown View Post
So I have a Surmount on the way. I was thinking of making a bracket for adjustable mast and jib placement. Could do it easily with some angled aluminum. Figure I will also move the shaft on the rudder more forward so it is off center. Replace the rigging. Make the hatch fit water tight. Put some bracing in the haul. Anything else needed?
Couple more things on my list:
1) Add some flotation (I use polystyrene strips stuffed in the bow forward of the hatch - free insurance)
2) Replace the bowsies, especially the backstay one. They WILL break
3) I replaced the rigging on mine with some 100lb Dyneema - the original is pretty stretchy - optional depending on your sailing conditions
4) Install a divider near the winch to separate the mainsail sheet from the rudder servo - saves ugly tangles and broken bits. I used a piece of plastic bent in a right angle...
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 06:45 PM
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Joined Mar 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrpenguin View Post
Couple more things on my list:
1) Add some flotation (I use polystyrene strips stuffed in the bow forward of the hatch - free insurance)
2) Replace the bowsies, especially the backstay one. They WILL break
3) I replaced the rigging on mine with some 100lb Dyneema - the original is pretty stretchy - optional depending on your sailing conditions
4) Install a divider near the winch to separate the mainsail sheet from the rudder servo - saves ugly tangles and broken bits. I used a piece of plastic bent in a right angle...
Sounds good will do when the boat shows up.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 02:26 PM
Fly, crash, glue. Repeat.
Belgium, Walloon Region, Plombières
Joined Jul 2011
966 Posts
I have a Legend on the way, really excited!

One question about replacing the rigging. I understand people use fishing line. Is that just the single-strand nylon (?) stuff?

Thanks! - Mark
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 02:57 PM
Build straight - Fly twisty
Whiskers's Avatar
Australia, QLD, Little Mountain
Joined Feb 2010
4,408 Posts
I would say do not use single strand Nylon. It is quite elastic, which is good for fishing and evil for standing rigging.
I like the Nylon covered stainless steel fishing leader. It comes with crimping tubes which make it easy to use and neat when on the boat.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 03:23 PM
Fly, crash, glue. Repeat.
Belgium, Walloon Region, Plombières
Joined Jul 2011
966 Posts
Thanks Whiskers, makes sense. What weight would you recommend? I see they are available in 10, 16, 24 pounds. They come in 30 foot spools, I assume two would be sufficient? Sorry for all the questions, I don't know the first thing about fishing.

Or r/c sailboats for that matter. My last sailboat 35 years ago had rigging made of shoestrings. ;-)
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