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Old Dec 29, 2012, 02:40 PM
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Gladstone, NJ. USA
Joined May 2000
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Hobby Zone Champ...Great Flyer but....

Hi Guys:
Two years ago, I purchased a Hobby Zone Champ for my Grandson in Charlotte, NC. I have been flying R/C model airplanes for 40+ years. I was very impressed with everything about the Champ. Great manual - clearly written and illustrated - Well packaged with integral carrying / storage case.
Flying was great - right off the board. A little sensitive - but one gets used to it. I go to see my grandson 3 times a year. Christmas, Mid-March and September. Each time we bring out the champ, I replace ALL batteries - charge it up and go flying... The last time I was there, I noticed that one of the two airborne batteries, would not take a charge. No problem, we purchased another - New battery. discarded the other. A couple of days ago, Flying conditions were winds about 5mph, temp about 50 degrees F. Flew one flight, but about a 2 minutes flying - about
150 up and out. I lost control....OK...did not land out of the field. I examined the flight connector - and noticed that one contact was visably bent down.
I repaired this buy bending into position and re-attaching the battery several times to insure operation. Connected the new fully" charged battery
and flew great... for about 3 min. This time it was somewhat higher before
I intended to hand it off to my grandson. All of a sudden--- No control - no power to at the airplane. The little "Champ" became a small speck in the sky...
Finally we lost sight of it, and spent the next 2-1/2 hours driving around the supposed landing area to no avail! Alas. our little Champ was lost.
30 or more years ago this was a pretty common and for a multitude of reasons i.e. Poor battery condition, bad connection(s) some where in the system(s). The batteries were replaced in Trans & Charger, before each session. I used only new "Duracell" batteries.
Any one else have this experience??? I would like to find the problem before purchasing another "Champ"... It is still a great product.
Sincerely,
Jon B. Shereshaw,
NJ. USA
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 12:05 AM
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Livermore, CA
Joined Sep 2004
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I have a few of them. When they get out a bit some are out of range.
If I remember right, the Tx range is about 300ft max and if the antenna on the rx is in exactly the wrong posision, it will loose the signal even sooner.
Some of us have picked up a Dx4 or Dx5 to get more range. Butch
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Old Dec 30, 2012, 06:51 AM
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Blacksburg, VA 24060 USA
Joined Feb 2000
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I had a similar experience with a Champ a few years ago. I totally lost control, the motor would not shut off, and it flew away I know not where. But I was using a full-range DX6i transmitter, not the supplied "game-controller" style TX that comes with the Champ.

Truth to tell, the Champ got wet a few weeks before, when I tried flying it off water using pontoons. Did some corrosion slowly build up on the brick, causing an open or short circuit, causing the fly-away?

Jim R.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 12:26 PM
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United States, CA, Oceanside
Joined Apr 2011
4,911 Posts
Any of the Hobbyzone/Parkzone micro planes should be kept close in. 150 feet high is pushing it with this plane. I suspect at that height it looked pretty small to begin with. Keep it close.
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Old Dec 31, 2012, 11:39 PM
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United States, AZ, Yuma
Joined Sep 2009
2,771 Posts
the tx antenna is straight out, the worst place. there is a 'cone of silence' from the tip. range is very low. having the antenna at 90 degrees helps. i do this to all my RTF tx's
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Old Jan 01, 2013, 09:36 PM
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Dallas , Texas, United States
Joined Oct 2002
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If you are using the tx that comes with it those controlers have dual rates.
Press down on the right stick and hold it for a few seconds. the battery light will flash indicating that low rates are on. it will default back to high rates when
the tx power is cycled off/on
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 08:16 AM
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I've flown mine very high without a problem. It is just a little speck and it takes a long time to come down if the power is cut. I'm sure someday it will have a mind of its own and be gone while at full throttle. I don't look forward to that day. I've checked the range on mine with a DX5e and the tx that came with it. The DX5e only had it beat by about 30 to 50 ft. This was line of sight along a metal fence and through some pine trees. Using cell phones to tell when control was lost. I wouldn't be able to fly it normally at that distance but high above as a silhouette , no problems at all..... so far.
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 12:10 PM
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You are absolutely right, It will fly off. I have seen it happen at least 4 times now. It is not a good idea to fly the Champ way up high. That is asking for trouble.
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Old Jan 02, 2013, 03:19 PM
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Maybe it needs my information posted on it just in case.
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