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Old Mar 26, 2005, 06:11 PM
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Joined Oct 2003
42 Posts
My first electric... a frustrating experience

I have a mini funtana with a with the recommended power set up from Horizon. An E-flite park 400, 20 amp ESC and a thunder power 2100 mah battery.

A few minutes into the first flight, attempting to get the feel of the airplane, the motor just quit. A mini funtana isn't much of a glider and a soft landing resulted in the landing gear plate being torn out. the 2 drops of glue just wasn't enough to hold it in.

Inspection revealed that one of the leads from the motor snapped off at the point of solder. A clean break, just like you took a pair of dykes and cut it. After a solder session and some epoxy on the gear plate it was ready to go.

2nd flight.

I set it down on short wet grass and away it went for flight 2. I'm running a 6.6-1 gearbox and a 12x6 E-flite prop. I don't know how it's suppose to feel in the power department but it definitely isn't as powerful as my glow powered 3D models.
After a short while something blew of of it which affected the flight characteristics quite a bit and it seemed like it was running low on power at the same time. I throttled down and set it down in ankle deep mud.
After a short hike in deep mud I came upon it and it looked like it survived quite well.
The canopy had blown off. I'll make a note to myself to to make sure it is secure the next time.

After getting back to the flight line, inspection revealed that the only problem seem to be a missing canopy.
I set it down to throttle up and the motor acted erratically. Just the same as it had when the lead broke off.
I decided to call it quits on this one and get back to the bench.

The motor mount on the gear drive had fractured and I could barely spin the motor by hand.
After disassembly I discovered that the magnet on the motor shaft had fractured and a piece of it had come off.
these pieces floating around in the motor also had ripped one of the copper wires on the winding and it was broken.

]

These images will show what I have.

Does anybody have any comments on how this type of damage happens? The prop wasn't broke and the spur gear wasn't stripped.

Got it back to the
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Last edited by zpat; Mar 26, 2005 at 06:18 PM.
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 06:27 PM
The Young Man
Excogitate's Avatar
Joined Mar 2005
614 Posts
Bad luck....

That is all I can think of that can cause that kinda damage.... short of maybe while the motor was on the bench it picked up some small metal object that was unseen.... *shrug*

Sorry to hear about your first flights with electric... keep at it ... you were not a master with glow planes in the begining either!


eX
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 08:49 PM
Mark 12:30
TipStalled's Avatar
United States, GA, Alpharetta
Joined Jan 2004
676 Posts
Generally this kind of damage (internal rotor damage ) is caused by heat. Ask me how I know !
Gear mesh is important in electrics and from my experience the E-Flite gearbox is quite durable , but you really have to stay on top of the mesh adjustment. A plausible theory is that the mesh became to tight on your first flight and overheated the motor. You discovered the disconnected motor wire , it could have become unsoldered from the heat. 2nd flight the internal rotor let go and this would cause the motor/gearbox/prop to come to a sudden and violent stop causing all kinds of strange damage.
I have had great experience with the folks at E-Flite and perhaps if you bring your story to their attention you may get some satisfaction.
I would highly recommend the Cobri gearbox which can be found here...
http://www.e-flightline.com./ Don't give up on electrics yet...they are a blast !!
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Old Mar 27, 2005, 05:12 AM
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Patrick Plawner's Avatar
United States, CA, Burlingame
Joined Sep 2001
5,350 Posts
These are good planes you have but I would recommend starting into the hobby with:

- Something with motor and prop, in the back and above the plane fuselage
- Made of strong material EPP or Elapor
- That glides well

You may want to read this too.

I know too many people who quit the hobby, due to the wrong plane/setup used to learn with.
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Old Mar 27, 2005, 11:20 AM
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Joined Oct 2003
42 Posts
Scanning the threads on powering a Mini Funtana I feel that I have suffered every malady associated with this power set up.
My gearbox broke, pinions have snapped, gears have stripped, motor shafts have been replaced, motor shafts have come appart, the windings have been torn up and I broke a prop.

The next set up will use 3s thunder power 2100, the E-flite 20 amp controller, a park 400 motor with a 6.6-1 gear drive that is supplied with this airplane kit.
I'm going to use the piece of paper that contains the gearbox insructions to clearance the gears and add some lithium grease to the gears. The prop will be balanced and all fasteners secured with green lock-tite.

The airplane flys good, it doesn't need anything.

Did I miss anything?
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