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Old Nov 02, 2009, 09:29 PM
Sopwith Camel's Cousin
Between my tx and crashed aircraft
Joined Mar 2006
3,792 Posts
Discussion
Vapor and Sukhoi Brick: How Reliable, Durable and Easy to Maintain?

Hello,

I asked this question in the Indoor and Micro Models forums
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1136094

and somebody suggested that I try asking here.

I have no experience in the ~1 oz. ultra-micro scale.
I am wondering how the vapor/sukhoi bricks are in terms of reliability, durability and maintenance needed
when used in something like the ~1 oz. Parkzone ultra-micros.
That is, how much effort/trouble will it be to keep Parkzone
ultra micro electronics running.

In particular, I have heard of bricks that stop binding after awhile
(even after the Vapor green dot bricks came out),
servos that need their resistive strip periodically cleaned,
servos where the moving parts jam and/or strip (and need fixing or replacing)
and ESCs with blown FETs, etc.

My point of comparison are ~6 gram electronic parts
(GWS Pico and Blue Bird BMS306 servos, 4ch. Corona Rx (crystal),
no name ESCs).
I basically plug these together, and about the most I worry about
is that some servos will sometimes chatter between 2 adjacent positions.

Thank you.
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Old Nov 02, 2009, 10:00 PM
Time wounds all heels.
Phoenix, AZ
Joined Jul 2001
832 Posts
I have quite a bit of experience with these systems.

I have 4 different boards, an original Cessna and Citabria, a Vapor, an mCX, and a Sukhoi.

I have never had a servo fail, although i did manage to strip the rudder servo on my Cessna about 2 years ago. I ran a drop of oil on the threaded rod, a drop of CA into the slider, and then worked it around while the CA set. Worked fine ever since. The early run of boards had fairly poor threading on the rod and some were a bit easy to strip out.

I have used the boards in Guillows conversions, homebrews, and just goof around ideas. Crashes, hangar rash, and my hamfisted abuse and they just keep working. I couldnt possibly be happier with them. Well, the AR6400 could have a native 3A brushless controller, but thats a whole different story. I have had a couple of the old boards apart to clean them but only one had any real need for it. I would imagine that environmental conditions would factor heavily on how fast the contact strips build up corrosion.

My Sukhoi has been smashed into trees, bushes, the street, my wifes SUV, you name it. I did manage to bust a wire loose on the elevator servo in a spectacularly poor landing and once I soldered it back up everything was perfect. The new gear has better quality control, better machining on the parts, and is very durable.

Great torque, precision, how can you resist a 1.5g servo that can easily lift 2x the weight of the plane its in?

The noise is normal. Mine sing from the servo holding up the weight of the control surface and keeping them centered.
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Last edited by watersharer; Nov 02, 2009 at 10:06 PM.
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Old Nov 02, 2009, 11:05 PM
Power Wheels Guru
UNGN's Avatar
Southlake, TX
Joined Jan 2008
7,327 Posts
I have 7 Kyosho Bricks, 5 Vapor bricks, 2 MCX bricks and 5 AR6400's.

The Kyosho servo racks were much more prone to strip than the newer parkzone/eflite versions. Servo rack replacement is pretty easy with a #000 phillips.

I've never burned up a FET or had a brick die on me, though I have bought some dead bricks for the servos and bought planes with dead bricks I don't think I have actually killed one, yet.

I thought I killed one of my AR6400's when my SU-26's crash landed into a stream and the brick locked up. I pulled it out of the plane the next day, plugged in a battery and it came right back to life.

The AR6400's seem to be a little more chattery than the Vapor bricks and some of my early (pre green dot) vapor bricks LVC early or shut off and come back on in a crash, but all work great for small models.
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