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Flyzone Inum Micro Electric RTF Plane Review

The Inum indoor flyer has a wingspan of just under 8 1/2" and is controlled with throttle and rudder. I found I really could fly it in my family room and with practice I will do it even better.

Splash

Introduction

INUM Indoor Flyer RTF from Flyzone (1 min 0 sec)


Wingspan: 8.46"
Wing Area: 21.9 in2
Weight: 0.3 oz.
Length: 9"
Wing Loading: 2 oz/ft2
Transmitter: 2 Ch 2.4GHz FZ-200
Receiver: 2.4GHz on all in one board
Battery: 3.7V 35mAh LiPo Battery
Motor: Brushed
ESC: On all in one board
Manufacturer: Flyzone
Available From: Tower Hobbies and Other Fine Hobby Stores Everywhere
Price: $39.99 ARF

The Flyzone Inum is designed for indoor flight but can be flown outside in calm conditions. It has a limited range but considering its small size the range is longer than I need. Throttle control is used to climb, fly level or descend. There is no elevator control but throttle management allows the pilot to control the plane's altitude and climb or descend attitude. Turning is controlled with the rudder. If the turn is gradual than rudder may be all that is needed but in a sharp turn some extra throttle helps to keep the plane flying nice and level. The transmitter is powered with four included AA Alkaline batteries and the transmitter also serves as a charger for the 1-cell 35mAh LiPo flight battery. Everything needed for flying the Inum comes in its RTF kit.

On the transmitter the left stick goes up and down to control the throttle and the right stick goes side to side to turn the plane with the rudder. There are trim buttons that I used for the rudder and they work. These are normal control positions for two or three channel planes here in North America so I was instantly able to control the plane with no new training or learning needed for handling the controls.

The instruction manual gives the range at 50 meters which is about 160 feet or a bit more than half an American football field without the end zone. I verified this range in the course of my review as I maintained control at slightly over fifty yards. In normal flight I kept it within 20 yards and experienced no range problems.

Kit Contents

Kit Contents

  • Assembled Inum Indoor Flyer
  • 2.4GHz receiver, controller installed in plane
  • 2.4GHz Transmitter/Charger
  • Spare propeller
  • 4 AA Alkaline batteries
  • Flight battery 1S 35mAh
  • Instruction sheet

Assembly

No assembly was required. The plane came completely assembled. I merely had to install the four supplied AA Alkaline batteries into the transmitter and then charge the flight LiPo battery using the transmitter/charger. The battery then mounts onto the front of the fuselage where it is secured in place with attached hook and loop material on the battery and the fuselage. There is a molded space on the left side of the fuselage that is the size of the LiPo battery and that is where I installed the battery for the initial flight.

Charging the Flight Battery

The charge cord in the transmitter is located in a small hatch on the bottom left front corner. I opened the hatch cover and connected the battery to the charger cord. The red LED on the front top center section lit up to show the battery was charging. After about fifteen minutes the red LED went out indicating the battery was fully charged. A fully discharged battery takes slightly less then 30 minutes to fully recharge. The battery will charge whether the transmitter power switch is at turned or off. The battery will not charge if the AA batteries in the transmitter/charger are too low in voltage.

Completion

No C/G (Center of Gravity) location was recommended in the instructions so for the first flight I installed the battery in the molded space provided expecting that would properly balance the plane as discussed above. As explained below I later moved the battery around to obtain the best balance point for the type (SPEED) of flying I wanted to do on a particular flight.

Receiver LED

Receiver LED

  • On - receiving signals
  • Slow flash - Throttle stick is up in the On position
  • Rapid flash - The battery is low
  • Off - The power is off or no signal is being received

Flying

Basics

With the throttle control all the way down I first turned on the transmitter. The green LED went on in the transmitter and there was one beep indicating the transmitter was ready. If there are two beeps it is time to change the AA batteries in the transmitter. I next plugged in the battery on the Inum. The Inum and the transmitter had come bound together so they were ready to go. Should rebinding ever be necessary the binding method is explained in the instruction manual.

The plane has only two channels and thus only two controls. Altitude is controlled by the amount of throttle supplied using the left stick. Direction is controlled with the right stick controlling the actuator which works like a simple servo. If in initial flight the Inum turns to the left or the right with no directional input from the transmitter, the pilot adjusts the rudder with the rudder trim buttons below the right stick to obtain hands off straight flight with no rudder movement.

However, when I used the rudder trim buttons I got a hum from the rudder actuator that was steady meaning it was using some current continuously. It can be heard in my indoor flight video below. I later used the trim tabs to get the rudder in a position that looked pretty straight but for which there was no hum when I turned everything on. I lightly pushed on the plastic rudder hinges in making my adjustment. I do mean pushed lightly! Now most flights I only have hum when giving rudder input commands but I sometimes have a hum for most, if not all, of a flight. The hum comes from the magnet copper coil at the rudder. It is normal to hear the hum when giving turning commands with the rudder stick.

The rudder commands are proportional and she will turn to the left or the right,

With very slow turns using a minimum amount of rudder required no additional throttle to maintain altitude. Tight turns with a lot of rudder input causes the inner wing on the turn to start to drop and some additional throttle was sometimes, but not always, needed to maintain level flight. Upon completing the tight turn throttle was reduced back to where it had been on those occasions where I had increased it.

Range

The instruction manual gives the range as 160 feet which is about 1/2 a football field without the end zone. The Inum is very small in appearance and at the distance I wouldn't enjoy flying her. However, I did have control at fifty yards when I tested the range at a foot ball field. Most of my flying is done within 30 feet of myself. I find flying it closer to me to be much more enjoyable.

Battery: Location, Location, Location!

The position of the battery affects the balance of the plane. For a slow flight using medium throttle I found positioning the battery in the molded space was a good location. This was the position I used for flying slow missions and my attempts to fly in my small family room. If I wanted to fly fast with full throttle using that battery location the Inum would climb and stall or I would have to reduce throttle until she leveled off. The solution was to mount the battery more forward on the nose with only about half of the battery or less in the molded battery space. Thus for fast flights I make the Inum "nose heavy" with the battery more forward. For slow flights I mount the battery in the molded space. I adjust throttle control to climb, dive and for level flight. I found setting the battery in the proper location for the desired speed of flight to be very helpful. For slow flights using the molded space is great. For high speed flights I move the battery forward.

Taking Off and Landing

Flights are started by a straight toss forward and level with about half throttle. The little plastic wheels roll freely with the plane on a flat level smooth surface. When I advance the throttle the Inum starts to roll and at over half throttle the Inum lifts off on her own. The amount of throttle needed depends on where I have positioned the battery as discussed above. A nose heavy forward battery position requires more throttle for take off. If flying outside in a light breeze all flights should be started and ended going into the breeze. I have only taken off in a maximum breeze of about 2-3 mph and she was able to handle that. All landings were made by reducing power slowly and landing on a hard surface with a very short roll out or touching down and nosing over in grass. The takeoffs and landings have been a none issue with my plane with landings and takeoffs even done on a table top.

Aerobatics/Special Flight Performance

The special flight performance is that it can be flown in a limited space. With only throttle and rudder control there are limited moves that can be made in flight. I have following a dive from altitude made a half barrel roll half sideways loop. I have not been able to repeat that move most tries. Not really an aerobatic plane! Flying with an 8 1/2" wing is its special performance.

Flying Times

With the supplied 35mAh LiPo battery I had flight times of slightly more than 9 minutes. With the 100mAh after market battery discussed below I had flight times of at least 25 minutes. Recharge times were under 30 minutes for the supplied battery and about 1 hour 20 minutes for the after market battery.

Is This For a Beginner?

Yes! The throttle is on the left stick and the turning control (rudder) is on the right stick so this will prepare the pilot for the future and more advanced planes. The kit is affordable and not too hard to fly so it makes for an acceptable first plane for indoors in a GOOD SIZE SPACE such as a quarter of a basketball court or outside in calm conditions. It is relatively rugged and certainly light weight so it should hold up nicely. I have had a few crashes with mine with no damage.

Flight Video/Photo Gallery

Hobbico staff were fun flying the Inum in the cage at the AMA and I was able to get some video of it flying.

Inum Flying at the AMA Expo (1 min 25 sec)

Authors video with Dick and Mike flying it indoors. Still pictures are Stan flying it outdoors in a breeze.

The Flyzone Inum Demo Video (2 min 2 sec)

Conclusion

For about $40.00 you get the Inum, it's transmitter, four batteries to power the transmitter/charger, the flight battery and a spare prop along with instructions. I have had some repeated flight experiences with mine and I suspect they are true in general I know they are true for my test plane.

Flying indoors with calm conditions is the recommended location. If there is a strong ventilation system it will somewhat affect the Inum. I could tell it was there at the AMA show but I was able to control the plane. Flying outdoors in calm is also excellent. In a breeze up to 3 mph I was able to maintain control and keep the plane around me. In a 5 mph breeze or perhaps slightly stronger both Stan and myself could fly the plane but the plane was forced to go downwind with the breeze. We could not penetrate that breeze! Launching into a 3 mph breeze use less throttle to avoid having the Inum stall on a forward toss.

Best flying was with the throttle in the middle range and the battery in the molded space. With this throttle location the Inum turned equally to the left and the right and was very controllable in flight. At higher speed, even with the battery forward the Inum had a tendency to pull to the left with reduced turning ability to the right. I needed a larger space to fly her even though she turned in the same spacial area most of the time as at slow speed I need more room to compensate. The caged area at the AMA show allowed for both slow and fast flying. My family room required slower speeds to fly successfully.

Four of us have flown my Inum in the course of this review and we were all able to controller her best at medium throttle. At medium throttle we found here a fun indoor or calm condition micro flyer. We had no trouble in calm conditions in controlling the altitude without elevator control. Faster flight was more of a challenge even with the battery moved forward. I found the alternative 100 mAh after market battery discussed below to be a better match for faster flights as the higher weight was helpful. At slower speed I had a more relaxed flying experience in a larger room. At full throttle more of a challenge. Flying in my family room with furniture is possible but definitely a challenge and that is without our cat being in the room trying to pounce on the Inum "bird." I like it! I recommend you watch the two videos and decide for yourself if you want one.

Pluses & Minuses

Pluses

  • Comes Fully Assembled
  • Nothing else was needed to start flying
  • A spare prop came with the plane
  • Spare props are available for purchase if needed
  • Additional flight LiPo batteries are available for purchase

Minuses

  • Spare landing gear is not listed for sale
  • Range is limited to 160 feet
  • Mine wants to turn left at full speed
  • May want to play with the rudder to properly align it for straight flight

After Market Batteries

At the AMA Expo I found Common Sense was selling a two pack of batteries for the Proto X. They were 1-cell with a matching plug and had 100 mAhs for almost three times the flight time. The batteries are a bit heavier and have a shorter stiffer wire. I use them in the molded battery space.

Thanks

My thanks to Hobbico and Flyzone for supplying the Inum RTF for this review. My thanks to Dick Andersen and Stan Smart for their help with getting the media for this review.

Last edited by Michael Heer; Jan 15, 2015 at 12:51 PM..

Discussion

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Old Jan 23, 2015, 04:18 PM
SlingWinger
San Bernardino, California, United States
Joined Oct 2004
1,752 Posts
While I haven't flown this particular plane, I have flown quite a few that were the spittin' image of it. I found mine in hobby shops, department stores and once got 3 for $40 at a swap meet. These were el cheapo's but I had a lot of fun with them.

I'll be getting one of these because I believe it will be of higher quality than the ones I've had.

What is great is that you can use the guts to make some really interesting planes that will out perform the original. These types of planes are engineered to fit in the box they come in, and are intended for the kids market. I have modded them by increasing span by as much as double, using thin foam "pie plates" for material, cutting lightening holes in them and covering the holes with produce bag material from the grocery store.

I've made balsa stick fuselages, moving the motor to the nose (reversed the wires to change to tractor configuration),.

What I'm getting at here is that this plane is worth the money, even if it's just to get the guts from it.

Just gotta be real careful not to break the skinny wires going to the actuator, I'm all thumbs and have a time of it soldering them back together.

This plane I think has excessive camber. On the ones I've owned, I've reduced it just by hand-forming, and improved penetration considerably.

I say go for it!
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Old Jan 23, 2015, 05:16 PM
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papadwight's Avatar
United States, TN, Murfreesboro
Joined Apr 2013
917 Posts
Been waiting for this review and its a good one. Thanks, going to order one today. Was looking for new house plane too play with. The looks and sound's just right. Just got off phone my LHS ordered it for me in next ..week.
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Last edited by papadwight; Jan 23, 2015 at 05:24 PM.
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Old Jan 24, 2015, 08:36 PM
Registered User
Canada, BC, Capital
Joined Jan 2014
94 Posts
way too cool! I just need to get the tennis players out of the indoor court.
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Old Jan 24, 2015, 08:47 PM
Registered User
Joined Oct 2009
132 Posts
VERY COOL!

But I want ask Hobbico , Are you interested in this one ? RC paper airplane DREAM1
The consequences of leaving the plane from the third floor (0 min 52 sec)
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Last edited by flydreamrc; Jan 25, 2015 at 08:16 PM.
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Old Jan 24, 2015, 10:47 PM
Registered User
USA, CA, Westlake Village
Joined Sep 2004
1,828 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by flydreamrc View Post
VERY COOL!

But I want ask Hobbico , Are you interested in this one ?
https://vimeo.com/117694259
NEAT! Where can I buy one?
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Old Jan 25, 2015, 09:47 PM
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Michael Heer's Avatar
Stockton, Ca. USA
Joined Apr 2001
9,767 Posts
The Inum is available at Tower Hobby and Fine Hobby Stores everywhere.
Think Geek has been selling a motor and prop for a paper airplane.

Paper airplane like that try Disney Animation. Very interesting video.
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Old Jan 26, 2015, 06:46 PM
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Mike Meyer's Avatar
United States, OK, Goldsby
Joined Jul 2012
477 Posts
Anyone know if the radio uses the SLT Protocol? If I could fly it with a Devo6s, I'd snap one up in an instant, just for the novetly.
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Old Jan 28, 2015, 12:17 AM
"Unnecessary Necessity"
coriolan's Avatar
Canada
Joined Sep 2006
6,035 Posts
Remind me of the Republic RC-3 Seabee!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Republic_RC-3_Seabee
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Old Jan 28, 2015, 10:56 PM
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silver_2000's Avatar
United States, TX, Carrollton
Joined Jan 2015
19 Posts
thanks for the info on the high cap batteries
would love a similar size plane that was more agile ...
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Last edited by silver_2000; Jan 28, 2015 at 11:20 PM.
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Old Jan 29, 2015, 12:36 AM
Build it, don't buy it
foamnpacktape's Avatar
Calgary, AB, Canada
Joined Apr 2008
2,218 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by silver_2000 View Post
thanks for the info on the high cap batteries
would love a similar size plane that was more agile ...
Yeah, it would be nice to have elevator control on such a model.

The advantage of two channels though is it is more intuitive for the complete novice. I had a few PalmZ's, and during Church camp I let some fifty children from ages 4 to twelve have a go with them without worry of the planes or the children getting damaged.

Unfortunately, over the years they succumbed, this looks like a good substitute and with RF control, more versatile.

Thanks for the review Michael
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Old Yesterday, 10:14 PM
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United States, TN, Murfreesboro
Joined Apr 2013
917 Posts
Got mine tonight . Flow it in living room after dinner Said to let it circling to left until youre accustomed to flying make a nice turn in living room at just under 1/2 throttle. Put it up still flying so I'm better happy with it. It can be very fast on full throttle.
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