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Old May 08, 2014, 07:06 PM
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Art Hobby Fidelity

I've been flying the 2.0m Fidelity for about one month. It is new to the Art Hobby lineup. It is very light and handles much like a RES ship although it does have spoilerons. Although I'm very accustomed to ailerons, I find myself doing mostly rudder-only turns with the Fidelity. The upturned tips allow very flat turns.

Our weather has not been cooperative and today seemed no exception with 90+% sky cover and gusty winds. I took the Fidelity out anyway and was very surprised with enough radiant heat squeezing though and giving me something to ride on.

My Fidelity weighs 17.8 ounces, about one ounce heavier than Art Hobby estimates for the completed plane. I'm a pretty light builder and still have no idea where I have unnecessary weight since it is built without any modifications. Although I had intended flying with a lighter battery, I found a 910mAh Thunderpower was just right for adjusting my center of balance. The Fidelity can handle wind but is much more comfortable as a "light air" ship. I did find myself using the spoilerons more than usual today in some heavier gusts.

This plane can really float. During trimming, I took some short hops up to around 100 feet or so, flew for a bit then landed for a few changes. On one of these hops I picked up a bubble at well under 100 feet and did circuit after circuit. Fun! I also found myself in a serious argument with a strong thermal today and had to work hard to get out with a combination of spoilerons and some tight spirals. Picked up a little too much speed for my liking but enjoyed my Fidelity singing to me during my escape. No sweaty palms but pretty exciting for what looked like a dull day.

I find I must teach myself a new plane but it really looks like this will be one of my favorites. Still learning...forever an apprentice.

Dave
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Old May 08, 2014, 09:45 PM
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Beautiful build Dave! Can you post the components you used please?
Thanks!
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Old May 09, 2014, 07:02 AM
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Thanks, Capt. Gary

That quick snapshot really doesn't do it justice. It's a beautiful design with elliptical tips on both the wing and the tail. I need to get some better pictures.

When building, I normally go with the designers' recommendations although I've made changes throughout my fleet. Here's my list with comments.

Art Hobby ART-500 motor. That's that "freaky small" 22mm. I also have that in my AH Gamma so I was familiar with it. What is amazing is how it takes the 2m Fidelity to altitude with ease. Smooth, quiet and plenty of power for the job given the light weight of the plane.

Castle Creations Thunderbird 18 ESC. I have lots of CC equipment so this was an easy choice for me.

ThunderPower G8 910mAh battery. I had intended on going with a smaller battery (even considered a 450 I had around) but I needed a little more weight as I stated in my original post. I had this 910 and I trust my TP batteries although I have other brands which also serve me well.

Propeller: Aeronaut 8x4.5

Spinner: I use the AH spinners. I'm an easy mark for those beautiful, but not inexpensive designs. I have the 31mm Low Drag for the 3.17mm shaft.

Receiver: I fly Hitec equipment so I used the Minima 6E which can be tucked in just about anywhere. I had an Optima 6 Lite but went with the smaller Minima.

Servos: I am very accustomed to light servos which freaks out my nitro and gas buddies. They look at servos mounted in my planes and walk away mumbling.
I have the Hitec HS-5035 HDs on the spoilerons but went with the less expensive Airtronics for the v-tail. Both setups smooth and very fast with good centering with more than adequate power for my style of flying. I fly mostly Hitec servos but have a mix of other brands including Dymond and E-Flite. (Note: I had some difficulty finding the Hitec servos since they lost their plant in that typhoon that hit the Philippines last year. In addition, I'm hearing that there have been sizeable government buys on servos. I saw a post somewhere on RCG that described lack of availability of other brands as well.)

Dave
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Old May 09, 2014, 08:55 AM
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Dave...Ignore the nitro and gas guy's they are usually clueless about the physics of a sailplane. I've got a spiffy excel spreadsheet that I use to calculate everything and anything servo related and generally my first "guess" is overkill when I run the numbers. I can verify that there is a lack of availability of certain servos at present. There are no Hyperion 09's or any of their clones to be had anywhere.
Thank's for all the info. That should give everyone a good real world tested and airworthy component baseline.
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Old May 18, 2015, 11:28 AM
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New Fidelity on Its Way

Bumping this thread a bit......I have been so taken with the build of my Falco (1st Art Hobby plane that will be High Start only) I decided that my Radian replacement will be a 2m Fidelity. Just made the payment and now the wait for it to arrive

Question.....instead of spoilers, I was thinking about adding flaps and make it an REF ship...any downsides other than the weight penalty? I think I can build it light enough...thoughts? Anyone build it stock with spoilerons and if so how do you like it?

Don
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Old May 18, 2015, 03:51 PM
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Don,

I've got lots of flights on my Fidelity. My opinion -- I would expect no increase in performance, flight nor landing, by adding flaps. As designed, you can bring the Fidelity right to your feet. The wings are very thin and you can practically see through them when held up to the sun.

As I said in my original post, I have spoilerons programmed and I normally use for altitude management and for killing lift on landings. With its light weight, the Fidelity is a treat to land in addition to excellent performance in light lift.

Dave
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Old May 18, 2015, 11:49 PM
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Thanks Dave. Will be my first V tail and thinking of adding the spoilerons - how hard was that?

Should have it this week and will start the build soon after Memorial Day

Don
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Old May 19, 2015, 04:09 AM
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I don't mean to hijack this thread Highride, but you mentioned you had a AH gamma also.
How do you like the gamma? I was looking at getting one. Does it slow down with spoilerons ok for landing?
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Old May 19, 2015, 07:21 AM
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Don-

Proceed with your build as in the instructions and your preferences. Spoilerons are just a programming exercise to allow you to flip up your ailerons simultaneously acting as spoilers. I fly Hitec equipment so I use the "butterfly" feature on my A9 to make that happen. You may also find that capability listed as "crow" depending on your radio. Time to get your manual out <<grin>>.

Experiment with it and find what you are comfortable with. Remember you will give up some roll authority when using the spoilerons. I control their travel using a slider switch so I can easily adjust when using. I also have programmed in a small amount of down elevator with my spoilerons to keep my nose from pitching up.

TL-

I fly my Gamma in between flights with my other planes. I am not a sloper, but think the Gamma would do well in that environment. It is a very responsive plane, quick like a small sports car. I have found it is not as easy for me to thermal. That may be because I find it a little more difficult to "read" in the air. When I do hook into a thermal, I have to pay attention to altitude given the small size of the plane.

I fly the Gamma with three servos. Two for the ailerons and a single servo for the elevator with no rudder function. Again, very responsive. I often use spoilerons on landing approaches and find that the Gamma seems to land pretty fast but it is another plane so controllable you can land it very precisely.

Hoping there is a helpful nugget or two in here.

Dave
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Old May 19, 2015, 08:46 AM
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Highride: Thanks! Do you know of a good build log that shows how to cut out and install ailerons on an Art Hobby plane? That's the step that am not sure about.

Don
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Old May 19, 2015, 09:35 AM
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Don,

Not off-hand on the build log, BUT...

I'll offer a few things. I am on the road right now so no access to my instructions. That said, the AH instructions have always been complete from my viewpoint. The procedures for cutting out the ailerons is very likely the same for all AH planes.

First: Read the instructions and look at the diagrams. You should see the aileron locations clearly marked on the wing.

Get a FRESH #11 blade...this is not a step to try and get by with an old blade. Use two if you have to.

The worse thing about this step is mustering the courage to cut into those beautiful wings <<grin>>

Just to give you an idea of what you'll be cutting, hold the wing up to a bright light. You will see a piece of balsa reinforcement right along the cut line so you will be cutting through this in addition to the skins and foam.

I use a Zona razor saw to cut the ends of the ailerons. I do those cuts first. I normally take a rule and measure then mark the limit of my cut on the bottom of the wing for the end cut. That way I can accurately extend the cut on the wing bottom with my saw.

Next, tape a steel straightedge along the long marks for the aileron. I put some weighted shot bags to hold the wing down on my building board but I think you'll want to make sure the wing doesn't move around. You can also tape the wing down. That works fine.

So now you've made your end cuts, have your straightedge secured along with the wing and you're ready to cut. Take your time and make multiple passes. Try to keep your blade perpendicular and work against the straightedge. Once you get a couple of passes in, you'll have more confidence in guiding your blade. That balsa reinforcement will give you some resistance, but take your time. You will eventually cut through and you will be happy with the results.

I clean up the cuts with fine sandpaper, 320 or finer. You will also find that when you get to fitting your ailerons, you will have to sand the ends to give you comfortable clearance and avoid binding.

The last thing I do is to seal the exposed balsa and foam edges with some Polycrylic applied with a small brush.

Comments on cutting out the servo bays: Check the marked bay sizes against the size of the servos you'll be using. You may have to alter the size of the bay. I normally clip off my servo mounting tabs to keep the size down. You can also make nice clean cuts through the foam with an electric hotknife.

I hope these tips are not overkill! I get carried away sometimes. When you get the ailerons cut out, get a glass of wine and admire your work.

Dave
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Old May 19, 2015, 09:47 AM
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Some other info on ailerons

Don,

I should have included a couple other comments.

You will have to bevel each ailerons front edge to allow downward travel.

Hinging: I use 3M Blenderm (DuBro hinge tape). Have never had an issue with this...not a tear or even hardening of the material. If you have to remove an aileron for some reason, the tape removes quite easily and any residue can be removed with lighter fluid or a similar solvent without damage to your wings. Works well for me although, like many things in our hobby, there are many preferences out there.

Dave
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Old May 20, 2015, 03:10 PM
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Dave;

I've been flying my Fidelity quite a bit since we corresponded on the Art Hobby group. I have found mine to be really good in light air and when the thermals and or wind come it, it does get bullied by big air. After about a dozen or so flights in wind ranging from 10-15 mph I finally got to fly it in dead air. For such a small and light glider it has a very flat glide and it doesn't take much to keep it up. I got everything from Art Hobby except the receiver, epoxy and paint. I had a totally amazing flight with it the day before yesterday. We have a small seawall, 10-15 feet high that faces east, and the wind was straight in 12-15, and the tide was in also, so no bailout on the beach. I selected the Fidelity because in an emergency I can catch it if there is no landing area. I launched the Fidelity, and it started gaining altitude. After I gained about 50' I crossed the street and started slope soaring the three 4 story buildings there. There were some unstable bubbles of air mixed in with the wind and soon the Fidelity was 300' over the road. Here in Hull, MA, nobody even notices me flying and nobody cares, not even the police. I walked about 150 yards to the north on the boardwalk and landed in a gigantic field (water on both sides) I fly when the slope isn't working. The Fidelity handled the 15 mph wind just fine - a bit more wind might be a problem, but it worked out great as a slope soarer. I did not use the motor. I do have the spoileron mode for my ailerons and they really help bring it down. I also fly it mostly with the rudder - if I had it to do over again I would make the ailerons the length of the outer panels and not polyhedral the tips. I'm going to mix the ailerons and rudder so I can fly totally on the right stick, allowing me to have a free hand to smoke a cigar or catch it for landing.
The next time the wind is favorable, I will call my buddy to be my spotter and will try to soar the 3+ miles of Nantasket Beach. Some of that distance is only small sand dunes, some has the seawall and the rest is houses. Watching seagulls tells me it will not be a problem with a bigger glider such as my Art Hobby Solaris. Summer crowds might present a problem for where to land, but the Solaris comes right on down in crow mode. Love me some Art Hobby gliders - great bang for the buck. For the price of one composite full house glider, I can have two Art Hobby birds….
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Old May 20, 2015, 03:26 PM
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Thanks for the tips on the ailerons cutouts. I have cut into Art Hobby wings already putting polyhedral in the wings of my Falcon and know what you mean about that "first cut"��

A friend who is new to building wants to do a joint build of a Tigra first, so will apply the techniques to that first then on to the Fidelity.

Don
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Old May 20, 2015, 04:46 PM
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Soaranator,

I'd love to do some slope flying and those onshore winds sound very good. I really enjoy Speedster Den's videos taken along his coast. Like a permanent lift machine!

I'm a flatland flier with an area about one half mile on each side so actually more than a section of land. Most corn and now oats with our strip tucked in a corner. Lots of gusty, variable conditions, but some great lift on many dates. My experience with the Fidelity is much the same as yours. My favorite times are with light steady winds or those early or late day conditions. Love watching it fly like it was attached to the sky.

I use rudder-only turns most of the time as well. Those poly tips give a pretty decent bank but sometimes I add some aileron. I also have some rud-el mix programmed. I'm going to increase the rudder throws but just haven't got around to it. I meant to add that note in my flying log just to remind me.

It's sitting in the back of my truck with my Castor waiting for me to get home. May squeeze in some flying this weekend weather permitting but this Spring has been unkind.

I've noticed the Endura in the catalog but my next AH plane will most likely be the Solaris.

Dave
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