|Kit Price:||$85.50 (painted), $65.50 (unpainted)|
|Material:||EPP foam, carbon fiber, lite ply|
|Weight w/o battery:||10.9oz (310g)|
|Suggested battery:||3s 1000mAh|
|Motors used:||SunnySky 2204s-16 2300kv|
|ESC's used:||Magic 12a|
|Servos used:||3 Hextronik 9g|
|PDF build manual:||CLICK HERE|
|Available from:||West Michigan Park Flyers|
West Michigan Park Flyers is well known in the 3D flying community; they make durable EPP and Depron foam aircraft that fly well, look great, and can stand up to the abuse dished out by hardcore pilots and rookies learning to fly 3D alike. I personally own an MX2 EPP profile, and I've beat on it for years without any major issues. So when I heard that WMPF was coming out with my favorite aircraft ever, the OV10 Bronco, I new I has to get one and get it fast!
The all new OV10 Bronco made it's debut at the Horizon Indoor event in 2015, and was launched and selling at EFest 2016 earlier this month. It's an EPP foam, twin-motor hybrid design, meaning it has a full center-fuselage and profile wings, elevator, and booms. I received my fully-built WMPF OV10 from Greg at EFest 2016, added my receiver and a 1000mAh 3 cell LiPo, and did a little creative mixing to shoot the flight review inside the University of Illinois Armory. That's because the Bronco has no rudder - it uses differential thrust from the motors for yaw authority. With the correct mixing, it's very effective in turning the Bronco in a scale manner, or flicking the lightweight airframe around for some 3D maneuvers. Let's take a look at this awesome foam twin.
|Western Michigan Park Flyers OV10 Bronco - RCGroups Review (5 min 39 sec)|
The OV10 Bronco is currently available as a kit only, but if you're lucky enough to attend any of the indoor fly-ins in the Midwest, you can usually pick up an assembled or ready-to-fly version at the WMPF booth if they're there. I spoke with Greg earlier, and he said he's currently taking orders for the PNP version, to be delivered at the Toledo Weak Signals Expo this year. The Bronco will be up on the WMPF website very soon, but to order one now, you'll need to call or email West Michigan Park Flyers through their website.
The PNP version I received was ready to fly, minus my receiver and battery. Since I brought my Futaba 10CAP with me to EFest, I used a Futaba 617FS receiver; we'll go over mixing later. The PNP Bronco included a pair of SunnySky 2204s-16 2300kv motors, 12-amp Magic ESC's, 6x3 counter-rotating props, and three Hextronik 9-gram servos. The Bronco was assembled with FOAM-TAC, and was extremely sturdy.
Carbon spars are used throughout to maintain it's rigidity. Three carbon tubes run through the main wing, and one across the horizontal stabilizer. There's also a carbon tube in each boom that runs from the motor mount back to the tail. Smaller carbon wires are used to brace the tail and the landing gear.
The center section of the fuselage is open and accessed from the bottom. It's spacious in there for your receiver and battery, but quite tight to fit your hands inside to hook up the servo and esc leads to the receiver. I ended up using hemostats to make the connections, and then taped the receiver to the inside wall.
The only plywood used in the construction of the OV10 is for landing gear support on the mains and nose wheel, and for the motor mounts. Together, the ply pieces form a strong mounting surface that can take the stress from the gear and a pair of outrunner motors. The nose gear is a castering design that uses the differential thrust from the motors to turn the plane. It works very well as the Bronco can almost pirouette on one wheel and spin with prop thrust only.
A total of three 9-gram servos are needed for the Bronco: one for the elevator and two for the ailerons. They mount in the pre-cut servo slots with FOAM-TAC or similar welding adhesive, and attach to the control surfaces with the included control horns and pushrods.
The recommended center of gravity setting is 2 1/4" back from the leading edge. After a few test flights, I ended up setting mine at 2 3/4", and the Bronco flew very well. These EPP flat profile planes from WMPF have a wide CG range before they get too squirrely with an aft CG, and the Bronco is no exception.
Since there's no rudder on the Bronco, a few mixes must be performed at the transmitter to allow for differential thrust. It's not necessary for flight, but the differential thrust opens up a world of possibilities for 3D flying, and adds to the scale flight experience as well. It's also necessary for ground steering, so I highly recommend setting up differential thrust coupled to the rudder stick.
There are three goals with regards to mixing on the Futaba transmitter. The first is to mix the throttle channel going to motor number one, to whatever channel you have motor number two plugged into. In my case, I plugged the left motor into the standard channel three, and the right motor into channel number six. A mix is setup with channel three being the master channel, and channel six being the slave channel. So any time the throttle stick is moved, it's also done on channel six as well. We now have both motors spinning with throttle. Now lets program in some differential thrust.
The next mix is to program the rudder channel to the right-side motor. When we move the rudder to the left, it will spin up the right motor. When the rudder stick is moved right, it will slow down or stop the right motor, depending on throttle setting. A mix is setup with channel four being the master channel and channel six being the slave channel. We now need to do a similar mix for the left motor.
Our final mix is to program the rudder channel to the left motor, the same as the previous mix. A mix is setup with channel four being the master channel and channel three being the slave channel.
From the very first flight of the West Michigan Park Flyers OV10 Bronco, I knew I had made a great decision to review this twin. It's docile, forgiving, and tracks straight and true at low and medium power settings. Go full throttle and the twin 2300kv motors accelerate the Bronco instantly; there's plenty of power on tap for any maneuver you can think of.
My favorite aspect of the Bronco, and one that get's attention on the flight line, is the differential thrust. With the throttle off, moving the rudder to the right will spin the left motor and make the plane yaw right. Moving the rudder left will spin the right motor and make the plane yaw left. With throttle advanced in flight or while taxiing, rudder movements will speed up and slow down the opposite motors to make yaw turns that feel just like standard rudder input. You can use your transmitter to adjust expo and endpoints on the rudder that will affect the motor's thrust output, just as you would on a standard rudder channel. Stall turns and hammerhead turns are a lot of fun because you can throw full rudder and the thrust will rocket the OV10 back around very quickly.
3D aerobatics are easy with the OV10, it behaves much like the other 3D planes in the WMPF fleet, only this one has two motors. Hovering is easy to do, but the Bronco wants to fall backwards due to the tail being up and out of the prop wash. Holding and varying the down elevator will usually keep it pointing straight up, and very little throttle is needed to hold a hover. Knife edge flight is also possible with the differential thrust, although feels a little strange as you're using thrust to hold the knife edge and not rudder deflection. It feels weird initially, but quickly becomes second nature after a few passes. Alpha flight is another area that seems all to easy with the Bronco. The counter-rotating props hold the airframe level without any adverse roll effects or wing rocking. Just slow the throttle, pull back hard on the elevator and add back in a little throttle to high-alpha the OV10 around easily.
Takeoffs are graceful and don't require much power to rotate. Landings, however, do require some power because the OV10 doesn't glide very well. With power off, it will sink fast, so keep a little throttle in as you flare to land, and hold back elevator to roll out on the mains in epic style.
|Western Michigan Park Flyers OV10 Bronco - RCGroups Review (5 min 39 sec)|
The quality and performance that's a staple of the WMPF lineup is evident in the OV10 Bronco. It's light, durable, powerful, yet surprisingly stable whether you're flying circuits or 3D. With most Spektrum transmitters, you can quickly program in differential thrust, and with a few programming mixes, it can also be accomplished with most Futaba transmitters as I explained in the review. I would highly recommend picking one up and experiencing first-hand the quality and performance that is the West Michigan Park Flyers OV10 Bronco.
Thanks to Greg and Barb for the Bronco, and thanks to CJ Kurella for flying during the video shoot.Last edited by Matt Gunn; Mar 09, 2016 at 08:11 AM..
The OV10 Bronco is currently available as a kit only, but if you're lucky enough to attend any of the indoor fly-ins in the Midwest, you can usually pick up an assembled or ready-to-fly version at the WMPF booth if they're there. I spoke with Greg earlier, and he said he's currently taking orders for the PNP version, to be delivered at the Toledo Weak Signals Expo this year. The Bronco will be up on the WMPF website very soon, but to order one now, you'll need to call or email Western Michigan Park Flyers through their website.
Greg told me it should be on the website later tonight, but you can call or email to order one until then:
WMPF contact page
I remember seeing this in your original photos a few weeks ago. I thought it was scratch built and those pictures actually got me looking for a flat foamy twin. Then, this!
Jazzed about this.
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