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Old Oct 14, 2008, 10:50 PM
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ElectroStik review ,grrr.

Based on some of the comments on the Great Planes ElectroStik I thought I would buy one. Specs 52.75" WS and 3-3.5 lbs.

Opened the box and the covering looked like inside out corrugated card board. Once put on and wrinkled over wood you can't use an iron to remove the wrinkles so I used my Woodpecker to punch holes in the Monocote and an hot air gun to reshrink it. About an hour or so to clean it up. What a mess.

Inspected the tail wheel assembly. What's this? They used a cat hair as the wheel steering thingey so had to replace the wire with something thick enough to work.

Thin stab warped because they did not use any diagonals. Elevator at one end mis- aligned about 1/8". Awfull. Had to cut the elevator off and rehinge.

The pushrod were steel and heavy instead of nylon.I cut the ends off and moved the servo tray back to shorten the rods up a bit.

No attempt by the designer to cut weight by limiting the use of heavy plywood or using lightening holes. The number of wings ribs should have been reduced. A heavy wing center tube could have been avoided by a better design. This plane doesn't difference much in construction from a glo.

The spec says 3-3.5 lbs. Mine weighs close to 4 lbs. With the plywood used I don't see how they could get to 3 lbs. Monocoat is NG for small electric airplanes. To heavy and unstable imho.

First flight was nose heavy despite being balanced dead on per the direction. On landing on a grass field the landing gear peeled off. No glue was used on the dovetails and very little on the mounting plate per the picture.

So I have to think about what I have here and what to do. This is my first Electric ARF from Great Planes and right now I don't think they have made the shift from glo to electric at least if this is a typical example. Electric ARF's from Horizon Hobby I have seen are far,far better constructed.
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Old Oct 15, 2008, 09:41 AM
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A typical problem I find with ARFs is that you cannot rely on anything. Just because you got a good one from this retailer this time is no guarantee you will get a good one the next time. They are not built by the manufacturer you are buying from, they are all built by different people, and there is no way I can see to control the quality without distructive testing on a sample basis. At the prices, I really don't see anyone doing that.

Les
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Old Oct 15, 2008, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LesUyeda
A typical problem I find with ARFs is that you cannot rely on anything. Just because you got a good one from this retailer this time is no guarantee you will get a good one the next time. They are not built by the manufacturer you are buying from, they are all built by different people, and there is no way I can see to control the quality without distructive testing on a sample basis. At the prices, I really don't see anyone doing that.

Les
Good point. I'm not that all familiar with ARF's. Just saw a post by someone who folded a wing on a big one. So my hassle is nada and hardly worth mentioning. If I ever buy another ARF I'll take a very very good look at it's insides before flying. Right now I'm completely re- manufacturing the beast.

Builders rule.
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Old Oct 15, 2008, 07:52 PM
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Great Planes does not exactly have the best reputation for quality, either. An ARF from SIG will usually be much better, and even very good. Great Planes really is near the bottom of the barrel of quality.
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 04:12 AM
North East England
Joined Feb 2004
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4 pounds for a 52" plane is heavy!!!!

I've always been a plan builder and over the years was even put off buying balsa wood kits, due to having to replace badly-cut ribs, poor-quality wood etc. I understand laser cutting has improved things considerably, but I still prefer to cut my own parts.

I'm no fan of ARTF's either, having bought a couple (in a sale, thinking I'd get a 'bargain') and then having to virtually rebuild the things. Some have faults so glaring that I refuse to believe they've been designed or test-flown by experienced modellers before they're put into production.

A good clear plan, a stack of well-chosen balsa and ply...what more does anyone want?

Steve
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 06:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAFplanekid
Great Planes does not exactly have the best reputation for quality, either. An ARF from SIG will usually be much better, and even very good. Great Planes really is near the bottom of the barrel of quality.
I thought SIG was now owned by Great Planes???
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 08:58 AM
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I stripped down the ElectroStik yesterday, modified it and will recover today if I have time. Not a big deal and certainly faster then a total scratch build. Actually the engineering of the plane is very good and the test flight showed it has a lot of potential. Built very straight and true by using jigs. Actually better then I can build. To much plywood however and that stuff is heavy. Little things make the difference and there are some real goofs in the plane like using steel bolt for the landing gear. I converted to 3/16" nylon bolts. The Bolts will now shear if needed instead of ripping the whole assembly off the bottom. Long heavy steel pushrods were removed. The servos are now mounted in the tail. Less friction and much lighter. Etc.

Looks like I was able to remove about 8-10 oz , maybe more. That huge for a plane this size. The wing tube assembly was about 2.5 oz. I got rid of it and will use a plywood/carbon fiber joiner and fiberglass the two half together. That will add back about 3/8 oz.

The attached pictures of the hatch cover show the weight of the stock heavy plywood hatch cover and a balsa replacement. This part has absolutely no structural requirement and is just dead weight. So I saved about .4 oz. That is a big deal. In engineering sometimes exaggerating a problem by 10x really lights it up. So in this case if we could save this much on 10 parts 4 oz of weight could be removed with no effect on structural rigidity.

How does one remove weight? It's hard and fussy. You just have to keep saying to your self 1/10 of an oz is zip but if you do this to 10 pieces over and over it adds up to a lot of weight. Just make sure you do not weaken the structure. Weight is the enemy. Less weight flys better and survives crashes better due to less inertial. Colin Chapman brought this to the extreme. Every part had to serve more then one function if possible. Think light.
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 12:31 PM
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Midland, Tx / W. Lafayette, Ind.
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Originally Posted by Ron Williams
I thought SIG was now owned by Great Planes???
Really? I sure hope not, or SIG quality may soon be going down hill as well.
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 12:44 PM
electric fly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAFplanekid
Great Planes does not exactly have the best reputation for quality, either. An ARF from SIG will usually be much better, and even very good. Great Planes really is near the bottom of the barrel of quality.
I bought the new Cherokee ARF and it's excellent in quality. The Revolver is a great ARF also. I think it's hit or miss from one model to another.
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Old Oct 16, 2008, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by killerstick
I bought the new Cherokee ARF and it's excellent in quality. The Revolver is a great ARF also. I think it's hit or miss from one model to another.
The essential thing about any ARF is nothing to do with quality, light weight or will the mainspars stay together - it's that folk buy them. No-one is likely to buy another, good, bad or indifferent, and the market's big enough to support plenty of marketing to sell the latest stuff to eager little consumers. Once you've bought it, who cares?

I've got the 'other' Stiklone - given me as a birthday present, it has far more deficiencies than I care to live with and will, sooner or later, undergo a certain amount of reworking. I lost two ounces from retrofitting a lighter UC I had handy just for starters.

Its handling and aerobatic abilities are so bad, one of the minor things on my to-do list is making it a low winger!

Ancient aeromodelling saying, reputedly from the world of control line aerobatics - 'It is easier to take one gram off each of one hundred components than to try and take one hundred grams off a finished model'

Regards
Dereck

'What's the difference between a hedge fund manager and a pigeon?"

"A pigeon can still make a deposit on a Ferrari"
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 02:35 PM
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Haralson County GA. USA
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Well I have two of the GP Electro Stiks and my son has one and we think they are well made, fairly light for their strength and fly great as in much better than a .25 -.40 size glow Stik.
Here is link to one of mine. It has over two hundred flights on it.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...22&postcount=8

Charles
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 07:05 PM
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Charles, I enjoy your posts and yours is one reason I bought my first ARF in a long time.

You numbers however are sure a lot different then mine.

A single 123 cell on my scales weighs 2.7 0z with solder bars per picture. My 4 cell 123 pack with Deans/balance tabs and shrink = 11.75 oz. That's 2.93 0z per cell. seems to be consistent will all my various packs. I know of no way that I can reduce weight here to meet your claims. Your a better man than I, building a 11 oz 4 cell pack. My scales are tested with a certified 1 oz weight and agree with each other.

As far as your claims of 50 and 69 amps at 2.57V per cell I cannot even come close to that. At 30 amps I'm looking close to that voltage at 70F. I did stick my pack in the oven once to raise the temperature to 110F and got some very high Amp numbers but have forgot what they were. Not practical for me unless I build a small oven of some kind at the field and pack them in foam to keep hot. The flight would be so short I'm not interested as I'm only a hacker sport flyer. My tests are run at typical room temp of 75F similar to summer flying temp.

I was hoping to get my lightened airframe covered today but didn't have time as usual. Maybe by Wed. Tower claims an all up weight of 3 lbs with their components. Nonsense, everyone says their plane weighs about 3 lbs with out the battery. Towers recommended lipo battery weighs 9.5 oz if you believe them. That's about 2.25 oz lighter then my 4C 123 pack. Cost $120 per pack and you need two of them because of very long charge times. My 123 4C pack has higher voltage and therefor similar run times at a given wattage. My permanently installed battery cost me about $44.00 which I choose to recharge in about 15 min on my Astro. Saved me a bunch of money and worries about my shop burning down.
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
As far as your claims of 50 and 69 amps at 2.57V per cell I cannot even come close to that.
Please provide a link to where I made such a statement.


http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/attac...mentid=2060882

Here is an in flight with 52A and 13V min and WOT was never used.

13/5=2.6 V per cell.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...&postcount=286


Charles
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 09:29 PM
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I have to agree with everydayflyer. I saw a GP Electrostick RxR, and it was excellent quality. No mods to it, and it flew just awesome. I loved it soo much, that I'm wanting to get one.

Pretty nice aerobat. Good with aerobatics.
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Old Oct 19, 2008, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by everydayflyer
Please provide a link to where I made such a statement.


http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/attac...mentid=2060882

Here is an in flight with 52A and 13V min and WOT was never used.

13/5=2.6 V per cell.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...&postcount=286


Charles
================================================== ====

In above referenced quote you said 69V/12.9V, 890 watts, 5 cells 123. That's 2.58V even harder to reach then my mentioned 2.5V. The number two digit moves around so much I just round off to the lower to simplify.

If I mis read something please correct. Anyway my point was I sure can't come close to your weights or your amps. 69 amps at what cell temp? I can't imagine what gauge wire this must take with out exorbitant ir losses.
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