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Screamingfoam.com Aven Jet II Review

The Aven Jet II is another in this company's line of heavy duty, almost nuclear grade, durable delta wing aircraft. Laser cut 10mm components are shapable and covered to create a slick, aerodynamic high speed, but stable pusher.

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Introduction


Wingspan:32"
Wing Area:460 sq. in.
Design Weight W/O battery:19 oz.
AUW:29 oz. (845g)
Length:30"
Wing Loading:10.03 oz/sq. ft. 31g/sq dm
Servos:HiTec HS-45HB (2)
Transmitter:Spektrum DX6i
Receiver:Spektrum AR6200
Battery:FlightPower Eon Lite 2550 mAh 11.1V
Motor:Just Go Fly 500T
ESC:36 amp
Manufacturer:Screamingfoam.com
MSRP:$95

I have been fortunate to have built three of Screamingfoam.comís aircraft: The Phoenix with a twin boom design was my first, followed by a beta version of the Aven Jet II and this production version of the Aven Jet II.

Richard Gangi designed the 10mm thick laser-cut delta wing. This is about as sturdy a plane as one can build and with incorporated carbon and fuselage strengthening the Aven Jet II flies like a dream, but has the fins to get to 80+ MPH.

Kit Contents

I always love getting Screamingfoam planes as they are so meticulously packaged, and often each piece is identified with tape with all parts inventoried on a checklist. The laser cutting is very clean, and there is no poor quality manufacturing. Lite-ply pieces are cut and even partially sanded, and you get a complete set of covering materials.

Kit Contents

  • Laser cut parts
  • All linkages and E/Z connectors
  • Lead weight
  • Full Covering
  • Carbon spars and reinforcements
  • Motor mount
  • Blind nuts
  • Lite-ply
  • Velcro

Kit requires

  • 550T Just Go Fly Motor (1950 kv-400 watt)
  • 36-amp ESC
  • 2 9-gram servos
  • 7x5 prop
  • 4mm prop adaptor
  • Micro Rx
  • Battery extension (8Ē)
  • 11.1v or 14.8v LiPo
  • Foam Safe CA and 5-Minute epoxy
  • Micro Balloons filler

Assembly

The build process for the Aven Jet II will take a few evenings: Figure your framing as one evening and applying the covering in the second with setup on the last. Use mostly medium foam safe CA and kicker. The Depron foam is not immune from too much glue followed by too much kicker, but it is pretty tough stuff. Five-minute epoxy will also be required.

Make sure you have a flat building surface, sharp Excel knife blades and a long straight edge. Get a few weights together to hold everything down and in place as you glue. A wax pencil is also handy. Figure on using an entire bottle of CA glue and a good amount of five-minute epoxy. You should also have a flat sanding tool of some kind.

Wing

I laid out the Depron pieces and made sure they fit perfectly by sanding some of the high spots off and lining up the outer edges as I trial fit. I placed a piece of plastic wrap on the build table just before applying glue to keep the wing from sticking to the table.

3/16 carbon rods have to be placed across the wing to provide strength, but first, marks have to be placed on the wing to make sure the three different lengths of carbon fit perfectly. These will be glued in with five-minute epoxy.

To prepare installation of these, I took a small leftover piece of carbon and pressed it deeply into the 10mm wing. I went over and over the groove until the piece of carbon buried flush with the wing surface, then glued it in place with five-minute epoxy.

Elevons

The Aven Jet II uses an elevon setup. I had to bevel the forward edge of the elevon hinge. I used a new knife blade and set up a jig to make sure I was cutting at 45 degrees. I used lots of blades; they dull through the thick Depron and center seam of glue. I also trimmed the aft end of the elevons to a point.

After I had the elevons prepared, I covered the top edge with lite-ply to strengthen the control surface. I had to score the lite-ply across the area where it bends over the trailing edge.

Upper Fuselage

The fuselage, while serving to house the electronics and strengthen the Aven Jet II longitudinally, also sets into motion your ability to gain the correct CG in conjunction with the motor you choose. By design, you should be able to run either an 11.1V LiPo or a 14.8V LiPo, but packs all differ in weight and size. I suggest a fatter pack but also one capable of getting up and inside the upper fuselage all the way to the nose.

Side panels are heavy but will fold easily around the bulkheads. Several different bulkheads are provided. Trial fit is the order of the day to ensure your battery fits forward with regard to the width of the fuselage.

The fuselage is completed with the upper decking and the canopy. The rear deck is removable and seals under the canopy. This is useful for routing wires. I used a small piece of carbon as the rear hatch.

The canopy is a composite of several pieces that will be shaped to fit the flow of the fuselage. The canopy latches in the front, and I used a magnet for the rear. Since this is the upper fuselage you will be installing only your battery and the battery extension wiring so the battery can reach the ESC.

Lower Fuselage

Just like the upper fuselage, lower bulkheads are installed, and the sides pulled squarely to make a straight fuselage. Use a building board or something as you pull the sides in to make sure you have symmetry. A lite-ply bottom will complete the lower fuselage.

Attaching the Fuselage and Covering

Both the upper and lower fuselage need to be installed onto and under the wing. I covered all of my components first, which is recommended so that there are more flat surfaces to work with. The covering material is excellent and sticks well, but does allow you the ability to lift it and replace it if you get it wrong. Plenty of covering is provided and it is all pre-cut. Once I had it in place, I removed the area from the fuselage. I trimmed around the tail fins. Some relief cuts are required around the curves, but the material stretches well, and the seams donít show too badly. Overall, the benefit is a slick surface and even more durability.

Tail

The two tail fins are fixed. Small pockets receive two fin tabs, but additional side fillets are also required to make sure the fins stay in place. I am not completely sure these are needed.

Motor

I used the Just-Go-Fly 500T motor to power the Aven Jet II. This is a good choice with plenty of power and the ability to run on both a 11.1v or 14.8 battery.

Radio Installation

I used a 2.4 GHz Spektrum AR6200 receiver to save weight, and a 36 amp ESC with an 11.1 volt LiPo. Immediately, you realize the ESC is way aft and the battery is way forward. I had to make an eight inch extension to connect the two. There is plenty of room to mount the Rx, but get it forward too.

Completion

I completed the build by installing the servos as far forward as possible and hot gluing them in place. Making sure the CG is correct was an exercise in maximizing forward weight not aft weight. I did whatever I could to get the CG correct without too much adding extra weight. In the end I had to add 28 grams to the nose.

Keep in mind I added weight based on my build. You may use the wider design bulkheads and get the weight further forward. According to Richard Gangi, "Building it the way I designed it and getting the battery (3 cell) all the allowable distance up front, I only had to add 2pc of lead (14g) to the under side hatch area to get the C/G correct. We did this at the Neat Fair and flew the heck out of it. As a matter, Vinnie Finn flew the maiden right at the field. The only thing he advised, and we did, is to add more elevons in the up position so he could pull out of a high speed dive easier." I would add here with a short overall length even a slight movement forward will get your CG centered.

Flying

As I expected, the Aven Jet II was an easy flyer. On launch, at full power the plane will want to roll over left. Once I got some trim in, that was normalized. Vertical acceleration with the 500T and the 11.1v battery was unlimited. I really like how well it handled and how docile it was throughout the flight envelope.

Basics

With a good launch you get a great climb out. At full throttle give yourself about 5-7 minutes of flight time and enjoy that screaming foam performance. The noise level is high, so make sure you donít exceed the park flyer noise containment.

Control throws are a good starting point. I dialed in a little more than specified but that is up to you. I especially bumped the HR to get quicker rolls and loops. The low rates are very helpful in landing at high speeds.

Control Throws

  • 5/16 up and down 40% Expo (LR)
  • 3/8 up and down 30% Expo (HR)

Taking Off and Landing

Takeoff is a hand launch making sure your fingers are clear. I use an underhand toss but just gently let go. The Aven jet II wants to fly and will exit your hand easily at full power. You will notice in the video that the plane rolls left at full power as you let it go. I centered all the control surfaces rather than trimming in some right aileron. Use your best judgment.

Landing is pretty hot, and the tendency to not want to come down presents itself if you do not give yourself a long final approach. Stay with it and keep your thumb off the elevator to avoid a porpoise approach and click in your low rates. Just let it glide to the ground. I saw no stall tendencies. I also thought I had great control over the steering on final approach. You will see in the video how much runway I used.

Aerobatics/Special Flight Performance

The Aven Jet II can loop, roll, fly inverted and climb to the moon. I love the long high speed descents at maximum speed. While I think the Aven Jet II has the ability to break 100MPH, I got only about 80MPH out of her.

Is This For a Beginner?

This is not a beginner aircraft. It would be good for a first time delta wing high speed pusher, but it is not something to learn on.

Flight Video/Photo Gallery

Downloads

Conclusion

Considering the time to build, this is a stretch ARF. Shaping and covering take considerable time so figure a couple or more evenings to get the Aven Jet II done. Pay particular attention to the CG and be sure to use the correct bulkheads to match your battery. You will have lots of extra 10mm Depron so make more if needed.

The covering is unique in that one option is to leave the skin exposed, but the finished look and the lowered surface drag are worth the effort. I would suggest using high quality servos especially considering their exposure under the wing. An option would be to cut into the Depron and move them over the top. Choose your ESC carefully as in some cases not only will you need to extend your battery lead, but also the lead to the Rx. Most ESC manufacturers do not recommend adding to the motor leads.

Finally, I encourage anyone to push the Aven Jet II to its limits. I know it has been over 100MPH, but with enough power and prop speed the plane can do more, I am sure.

Good:

  • 10mm Depron
  • High quality Parts
  • Excellent flight characteristics

Not so good:

  • Instructions had me wondering at times
  • Covering requires correct fit
  • Shaping foam requires patience
Last edited by Angela H; Nov 15, 2010 at 02:26 PM..

Discussion

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Old Nov 15, 2010, 09:54 PM
WAA-08 THANK FRANK!
JimNM's Avatar
Las Cruces, New Mexico, United States
Joined Jun 2002
7,069 Posts
Nice review. One note for you though, most esc manufactures highly discourage extending the BATTERY to ESC leads. The preferred method is to extend the esc to motor leads.

JimNM
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Old Nov 16, 2010, 05:46 AM
Dr. Dave
USA
Joined Nov 2005
1,316 Posts
Thanks Jim, I really thought I had read it the other way. Oh well it worked fine.
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Old Nov 16, 2010, 06:47 AM
WAA-08 THANK FRANK!
JimNM's Avatar
Las Cruces, New Mexico, United States
Joined Jun 2002
7,069 Posts
Nicely done on the review, the plane looks like a ton of fun . Thanks for he article.
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 09:56 AM
Bob Templeton
T3chDad's Avatar
USA, AL, Huntsville
Joined Apr 2007
3,911 Posts
Pictures are too small. Movie is MOV. Maybe you could upload your video to youtube or vimeo and link to it? Then those of us that don't (won't) use quicktime can see it.

Good review otherwise. Thanks.
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 03:08 PM
matt the cat
strongsville ohio
Joined Oct 2005
669 Posts
i have a just go fly 500t for sale 25.00$ if anyone wants it.
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Old Nov 21, 2010, 10:30 PM
Registered User
Joined Apr 2010
1 Posts
To Matthew...

I'll take the 500T for $25, please advise.
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Old Nov 22, 2010, 03:28 PM
Love my Raven's!
cryhavoc38's Avatar
United States, WA, Woodinville
Joined Mar 2007
8,045 Posts
Thats alot of cash for some depron and plastic. Seems like alot of work to get it shaped.

Considering what it is, how much is a bare stryker body parts kit?
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Old Nov 22, 2010, 04:56 PM
Fokker Ace's Avatar
Joined Aug 2006
1,551 Posts
+1.
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Old Nov 22, 2010, 06:34 PM
Registered User
cjbucher's Avatar
Raleigh, NC
Joined Sep 2004
2,549 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by T3chDad View Post
Pictures are too small. Movie is MOV. Maybe you could upload your video to youtube or vimeo and link to it? Then those of us that don't (won't) use quicktime can see it.

Good review otherwise. Thanks.
The latest Windows Media player seems to play .MOV files...

I have Windows 7 and I noticed that Windows Media Player was chosen to play the video even though I have itunes/quick time installed...\\-

--

Nice plane! Delta's are always great flyers and a long one like this must be rock solid...
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Old Nov 23, 2010, 05:41 AM
Dr. Dave
USA
Joined Nov 2005
1,316 Posts
Stryker? Well I guess looks of plane look alike for a reason...
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Old Nov 23, 2010, 02:03 PM
Love my Raven's!
cryhavoc38's Avatar
United States, WA, Woodinville
Joined Mar 2007
8,045 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by 78dave View Post
Stryker? Well I guess looks of plane look alike for a reason...
Are you not familiar with the ever popular parkzone stryker and the readily available parts to build ones own with hand selected components?

Additionally, its less money to buy a Funjet body kit.

The only reason I mentioned the price of the depron kit you received is that its pretty expensive and alot of shaping,sanding to get it into shape.

Jetsett and Maybz, among others, have been creating plans for depron park jets for years and the only cost to the builder is material and whatever electronics package the builder installs.

Seems like a nice plane, but for $95, I'd rather buy a case of 6mm depron and create a bunch of parkjet's.

As an alternative, Model Aero has been creating very cool depron jets for some time and their prices are very reasonable.

http://modelaero.com/Merchant5/merchant.mvc?
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Old Nov 25, 2010, 05:46 AM
Rehab is for quitters
LuckyArmpit's Avatar
West Middlesex, PA, US
Joined Jun 2001
4,853 Posts
Just visited the site. Just about all the models have the "coming soon" designation. Are these not for sale yet? Like the looks of many of the models.

Lucky...
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Old Nov 25, 2010, 09:20 PM
Registered User
Joined Jan 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuckyArmpit View Post
Just visited the site. Just about all the models have the "coming soon" designation. Are these not for sale yet? Like the looks of many of the models.

Lucky...
Lucky,
Do you mean Model Aero? If so I was just on the site and did not see anything marked "coming soon"
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Old Nov 25, 2010, 09:25 PM
Registered User
Joined Jan 2010
4 Posts
Matter of fact ModelAero has a black friday deal going on!!!!!
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