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ElectriFly Edge 540 EP Foam Aerobat ARF Review

Take some foam sheets, mix in some carbon fiber, add a dash of state-of-the-art electronics, top it off with legendary Great Planes quality and you have a recipe for unmatched indoor/outdoor 3D fun!

Splash

Introduction


Wingspan:32" (815mm)
Wing Area:274 sq. in. (17.5 sq. dm)
Weight:6.0 - 6.3 oz. (170 - 180g)
Length:35" (890mm)
Wing Loading:3.2 - 3.3 oz/sq. ft. (10 - 11 g/sq. dm)
Servos:Futaba S3114 analog micro (FUTM0414)
Transmitter:Futaba T6EX six-channel spread-spectrum aircraft (FUTK6900)
Receiver:Futaba FASST R6004FF four-channel spread spectrum (FUTL7624)
Indoor Battery:FlightPower EON-X Lite 7.4v 350mAh 25C 2S lithium polymer (FPWP4014)
Outdoor Battery:FlightPower EON-X Lite 11.1v 350mAh 25C 3S lithium polymer (FPWP4015)
Indoor Motor:ElectriFly RimFire 250 1750Kv outrunner (GPMG4502)
Outdoor Motor (not tested):ElectriFly RimFire 300 1380Kv outrunner (GPMG4505)
ESC:ElectriFly Silver Series 8A brushless (GPMM1800)
Propeller:PowerFlow 8x3.5 slow flyer (GPMQ6608)
Catalog Number:GPMA1128
Manufacturer:Hobbico, Inc., Post Office Box 9021, Champaign, Illinois 61826-9021 USA
Available From:Any hobby dealer which stocks Hobbico products as of October 2010
Price (USD):$49.99

Flat foamies, by their very nature, should be incapable of flight. Paper airplanes, same thing. Yet the very paradoxes which have Signore Bernoulli spinning in his grave make for some mighty fun flying and some insane stunts no full-scale plane can hope to match.

Such is the case with the ElectriFly by Great Planes Edge 540 EP Foam Aerobat. This indoor/outdoor profile foamie is a stylized version of the full-scale air racer produced by Zivko Aeronautics of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and which has become a staple at the Red Bull Air Races.

Small and light enough to fly in a gymnasium or other large indoor venue yet stable enough to fly outdoors in calm conditions, the ElectriFly Edge 540 has earned a place as a supported aircraft in the Academy of Model Aeronautics Park Pilot program.

Assembly

Here's your building supplies shopping list:

  • 1/2-ounce bottle of foam-safe thin CA
  • Foam-safe CA activator
  • Hobby knife with spare blades
  • 30-watt soldering iron or butane cigarette lighter for shrink wrap tubing
  • Straightedge or metric ruler
  • Ziploc-type sandwich bag to hold the ABS parts and hardware after the factory bag is opened

This particular indoor Edge is going to be all-Hobbico per the recommendations in the manual, so here's what is recommended to get in the air and what I'll be using:

  • FlightPower EON-X Lite 7.4v 2S 350mAh 25C li-po (FPWP4014); Great Planes Competition Series GPMP0700 is also recommended. For outdoor flying, use the 11.1v 3S versions: FPWP4015 and GPMP0701 respectively
  • RimFire 250 1750Kv outrunner (GPMG4502); for outdoor use, the 1380Kv RimFire 300 (GPMG4505) is recommended but not necessary per Hobbico's design team
  • ElectriFly 8A brushless ESC (GPMM1800); the manual also recommends the FlightPower 10A brushless ESC (FPWM0210) for indoor flight but not for outdoor
  • PowerFlow 8x3.5 propeller (GPMQ6608) for either setup

You will need a four-channel or greater spread-spectrum aircraft radio with a mini-receiver, three micro servos and a suitable charger:

  • Futaba S3114 high-torque micro servos (FUTM0414)
  • Futaba R6004FF mini-receiver (FUTL7624)

That factory-recommended receiver is from Futaba's FASST line of spread-spectrum radio equipment; I'll be binding it to a Futaba T6EX six-channel FASST transmitter which I'm privileged to use for all my Hobbico reviews.

Fuselage

Once you've torn through the packing tape and inspected the parts, it's time to begin. The parts, made form Hobbico's proprietary 3mm extruded "Pro-Formance Foam" are impressive. The cutting is to perfection, the graphics sharp and clear and all the control surfaces are pre-installed with expertly applied 3M Blenderm tape. Even the very thin carbon fiber reinforcement rods in the wing and horizontal stabilizer as well as the CF tail skid are pre-installed.

The parts count is rather low. There are only nine basic airframe components less the CF rigging; there are actually more parts in the alignment system.

You're in for a real treat if you've never assembled a Great Planes/Hobbico model before. By that, I mean their comprehensive, well-written and easy-to-follow assembly manuals and the Edge 540 is no exception.

Assembly begins on page five of said manual. Once you glue down the ABS landing gear supports, set aside the fuselage and get ready to assemble the secret to your building success.

There are ten fuselage alignment crutches which need to have their feet installed. Four top, four bottom and two wing crutches comprise the set. The manual recommends the use of waxed paper or one of the kit's plastic bags to protect your work surface from CA, but I elected to grab my bottle of medium-viscosity foam-safe CA (in order to save the thin stuff for the model itself), punch out the parts, glue down the feet and shoot each glued joint with the foam-safe CA kicker.

Next comes the joining of the fore and aft horizontal fuselage halves which comprise the wing and horizontal stabilizer as well. Once glued together, cut the joiner tabs on the fuselage and install the horizontal fuselage/wing/stab on the mounting tabs. What results is a surprisingly complete-looking airframe which went together in much the same way as a child's foam or balsa glider might. It's also a study in patience; flipping the plane upside down and installing the top crutches per step 6, page 6 requires care. It'll take a bit of doing to keep the airframe together and to keep the crutches from sliding off, but once you're finished and the ABS motor mount temporarily installed without glue to help align the fuselage, you're eventually left with a perfectly straight fuselage which can stand on its own on your work surface.

This is where the recommended sandwich bag comes in. Once you open the parts bag, transfer the whole thing to the sandwich bag to prevent losing parts.

The model is then turned over and the top halves of the numbers 1 and 3 crutches are installed and carefully glued to the bottom halves, adding more strength and aiding in the alignment. Turn the Edge upside down, make sure the feet on all the crutches are square on your building surface and tack down the horizontal and vertical fuselages with the thin CA. Follow the manual's advice and avoid using kicker. The glue will set in a few seconds and you've averted the risk of melting the foam or creating unsightly bubbles or opaque white-colored glue joints.

A couple of ABS brace supports are now mounted to the underside of each wing; these will help support the support rods in the next steps.

You now have what is basically a complete fuselage less the carbon fiber bracing. Install the wing crutches if you haven't yet done so and let's get started on the trusses.

Carbon Fiber Wing Trusses

Four 1x390mm carbon fiber rods and six brace doublers are used to brace the underside of the wing. Essentially, the rods criss-cross through the ABS braces and attach via the doublers to the wings. The fuselage ends are mounted pretty much the same way with a small doubler on one rod and the small hole in the landing gear support back from step one supporting the other rod. Repeat for the other wing, check for proper alignment and glue down the rods in the proper sequence listed in the manual. The rods should poke through the tops of the wings ever so slightly.

I misinterpreted the directions, didn't allow the tops of the rods to poke through and I discovered my error after I'd tacked down the rods. However, everything came out nice, even and surprisingly strong. Remove the temporarily installed motor mount, carefully cut the numbers 1 and 3 crutches from the model and glue the motor doublers in place. Now you have a proper mounting area for the motor mount. Glue it down in the proper orientation and it's on to the initial radio installation.

Servo/Pushrod Installation

The ElectriFly Edge 540 is designed for Futaba's excellent S3114 micro servos. I'd reviewed a now-discontinued Carl Goldberg Yak-54 EP with these servos; since its untimely demise due to a poorly repaired motor mount, those same servos are now living in a Great Planes Yak-54 EP. They're fast, accurate and absolutely rock-solid dependable. Specs? Sure:

Operating Speed:.10 sec/60 deg @ 4.8V; .09 sec/60 deg @ 6.0V
Output Torque:20.8 oz. in. (1.5 kg/cm) @ 4.8V
Weight:.27 oz. (7.8g)
Dimensions:.86 x .43 x .78" (21.8 x 11 x 19.8mm)
Catalog Number:FUTM0414
Distributor:Hobbico, Inc., Post Office Box 9021, Champaign, Illinois 61826-9021 USA
Available From:Any hobby dealer which stocks Hobbico products
Average Selling Price (USD):$14.99

Installation begins with centering your rudder servo with the radio system. A large servo arm comes packaged with the S3114; remove it and install the large arm in such a way as to make it perpendicular to the centerline of the servo. A dab of CA on the mounting tabs holds it in place.

A foam offset is used on the opposite side of the fuselage for the elevator servo. Once it gets the same treatment as the rudder servo, in it goes followed by the preassembled elevator pushrod with its five guides.

When I had to head back to my sandwich bag for the aileron and elevator control horns, there they weren't. In fact, I didn't remember seeing them at all; they're pretty distinctive looking and hard to miss. Still, I rifled back through the packaging, but to no avail.

Since all this happened on a Saturday, I had to wait until Monday to place a call to Hobbico's customer support center. By week's end, a package from the Tower Hobbies warehouse in Champaign was waiting in my mailbox with the entire hardware bag and, of course, the control horns within. In lieu of an invoice was an apology for the delay and that my warranty claim was enclosed.

I've dealt with Hobbico's customer service on and off over the years and if the Edge 540 is your first Hobbico product, their stellar customer service will simply blow you away. Companies like this make the hobby experience great.

Returning to the assembly, the rudder pushrod is inserted through the guides, the control horns are installed, but not glued. The rudder pushrod requires you to slip the z-bend wire and tubing from the hardware bag over the end and once the rudder is properly aligned, heat from your soldering iron is used to shrink the tubing. I opted to use a disposable butane cigarette lighter on its lowest setting. Either way, be careful so as not to melt the foam.

Fuselage Truss Rods

All that's involved here is gluing each rod in its proper place with an ABS doubler at either end. Use a metric ruler to determine the proper rod for the job; some are similar in length. The underside horizontal stabilizer braces go on first followed by four rods of varying lengths criss-crossing underneath the left side of the model ending back at the tail with the upper horizontal stabilizer braces. Be very careful with the thin CA and use kicker sparingly if at all. Double-check your pushrod adjustments and secure the ends with CA if you need to break the factory glue bonds.

Since the Edge 540 uses a single servo for the ailerons, Hobbico's designers have thoughtfully created an anti-differential pushrod arm designed to slip onto the underside of the arms of the S3114 servo and attach through the existing holes in the arm with couple of tiny 1.2mm self-tapping screws. I'd centered the servo as I'd done with the other two, but the small arm shown in the photo wouldn't line up along the centerline. The large arm did, so I used that instead, trimming off the two unused arms.

Install the servo followed by the arm in its proper orientation, glue down the servo and install and adjust the aileron pushrods in the same manner.

With all of those CF rods in place, the Edge now looked like a proper, elegant and somewhat abstract model airplane; it brought to mind something one might see hanging from an Alexander Calder mobile.

I was looking forward to seeing it hanging from the prop soon.

Radio and Motor Installation

The final installation of the electronics starts with the motor. The RimFire 250 motor is a marvel of engineering no larger than a quarter. Here are the specs:

Diameter:1.10" (28mm)
Length:.51" (13mm)
Weight:.71 oz (20g)
Kv (RPM/volt) Rating:1750
Voltage Range:7.4 - 11.1V (2S - 3S) lithium-polymer
ESC:8 - 10 ampere
Shaft Diameter:3mm
Constant Watts:90
Burst Watts:120
Propeller Range:7x6 to 8x4 slow-flyer
Catalog Number:GPMG4502
Manufacturer:Hobbico, Inc., Post Office Box 9021, Champaign, Illinois 61826-9021 USA
Available From:Any hobby dealer which stocks Hobbico products
Average Selling Price (USD):$39.99

The motor lines up with three of the holes in the mount and is attached with the remaining three #2 screws. Its leads exit uncomfortably close to the spinning endbell, but while they may appear to be stiff enough to flex themselves into contact with it, I noticed some minor notching in the yellow motor lead after the test flights. I used some Blenderm tape I had on hand to tack the wires to the mount. The pre-assembled landing gear struts are next, criss-crossing through the supports installed way back at step one. One of the simulated wheel pants had come loose in transit; a bit of CA fixed that right away. The pants aren't reinforced; one of them managed to break clean in two with normal handling of the model. I guess I managed to bump it somehow, but let my misfortune benefit you when it comes to handling the Edge.

A piece of the soft "loop" side of the hook-and-loop from the hardware bag goes on both the receiver and ESC at this juncture. I've used other ElectriFly ESCs before and they're terrific. They come ready to plug-and-play with pre-installed bullet connectors for the motor and genuine W.S. Deans battery plugs. Specs for the indoor 8-amp version are as follows, but it'll work for outdoor use as well:

Input Voltage:6 - 12 NiCd/NiMH or 2 - 4 Li-Po
Dimensions:1.18 x .24 x .79 " (30 x 6 x 20mm)
Weight:.39 oz (11g)
Brake:Yes, switchable on and off
Continuous/Burst Output Current:8A/10A
BEC:5V/1.5A, suitable for up to 4 micro servos with adequate air flow
Thermal Cutoff:230 deg. F (110 deg. C)
Low Voltage Cutoff:Battery voltage x .67
Operating Frequency:8.5 KHz
Max Power:120 watts
Battery Connector:W.S. Deans Micro
Motor Connectors:2mm female
Catalog Number:GPMM1800
Manufacturer:Hobbico, Inc., Post Office Box 9021, Champaign, Illinois 61826-9021 USA
Available From:Any hobby dealer which stocks Hobbico products
Average Selling Price (USD):$32.99

The ESC is mounted underneath the horizontal fuselage. The manual suggests a small piece of tape for keeping the leads away from the pushrods, but I opted to use a couple of loose-fitting tie wraps. The result kept the leads away from the pushrods, but the whole affair isn't as neat as I'd like for it to be; some cleaning-up is going to be in this model's near future.

Once you've installed the prop on the motor shaft and stretched the o-ring over the retaining screws, you're done with everything save the battery installation and CG check. That initial balance point is 5/8" (16mm) behind the wing's reinforcement spar. The photo showing the suggested battery location turned out to be the perfect place for the battery for starters. You have about 1/4" leeway front or rear to fine-tune the model to your liking.

Completion

There is an option to install aileron balance spades beneath each aileron. These are designed to allow the model to turn with less rudder input than is usually required on a flat foamie. I decided to wait until after the maiden flight to see whether or not I'd use the spades since I generally add rudder input on most turns anyway. I wound up not using them after the outdoor maiden flight since it flew so well, but I'm keeping them just in case. Someone setting up their Edge as an easy-going park flyer might consider installing the spades, but keep in mind that once they're in, they're in to stay since they're glued to the ailerons.

If you've opted for a sport radio without dual rates, you're instructed to set the control throws at the high setting of 44mm/30 deg elevator, 70mm/35 deg of rudder and 41mm/23 deg of ailerons. 3D bumps the throws to 70mm/58 deg, 95mm/52 deg and 102mm/79 deg respectively. I set up the Futaba T6EX with the high and 3D rates by setting the end point adjustments at 100% and adjusting the dual rate setting for each channel accordingly.

The old model memory I'd chosen had exponential settings of -30% for the ailerons and -20% for the rudder. Those expo settings turned out to be good choices, at least for my taste.

Flying

Basics

Like the '70s pop song says, it doesn't rain in Southern California.

It pours. Man, it pours.

After a few days of really bad weather, we finally had a gorgeous, calm, Chamber of Commerce-worthy day to put the Edge in the air.

I still hadn't secured an indoor venue as I thought I might be able to at the onset of the review, so it was off to my small test field, Demuth Park in Palm Springs, California.

I had both the two-cell and three-cell pack with me and I wanted to see what the Edge would do. In went the three-cell and after a double-check of the CG and the controls, I opted for a hand launch. since I didn't want to get the gear hung up in the grass.

Throttle up...let go...we're airborne!

Taking Off and Landing

Once in the air, the Edge is remarkably stable for such a light model with such flat flight surfaces.

It's also a remarkably stiff model; there was no sign of any flex whatsoever. Hobbico's design team did well with their latticework of carbon fiber helping to hold everything together.

Landing is just as easy; this is a lightweight model with very generous wing area. The Edge really wanted to glide in for touchdown, so it would be advisable to keep this in mind if you elect to fly indoors.

Aerobatics/Special Flight Performance

To recap, I'd set the T6EX transmitter to switch between the recommended high rates and even higher 3D rates. I was on the high rate setting while I got used to the Edge. This didn't take long at all; it will immediately inspire confidence in almost any pilot with its easy yet responsive control.

It was, if anything, a little bit on the slow side where the roll rate and elevator response were concerned. Oh, they were acceptable, but not as fast as I expected.

Flipping the dual rate switch to the 3D setting really brought out the fun.

Rolls were insanely fast, snap rolls more so. Loops? No problem. The Edge literally looped within its own length. Inverted flight was as easy as regular flight and attempts at knife edge flight brought it up nearly in the vertical hover position. Full rudder in normal flight attitude put the Edge in beautiful, easily maintained blenders, but high throttle settings tended to cause the Edge to push forward instead of bank.

What impressed me the most is how easily the Edge recovered from some really whoopsy-daisy attitudes. A little stick, a little throttle and all was back to normal. Of course, this is not a trainer, so this ease of recovery applies to pilots with some aerobatic experience under their belts.

Hovering was next.

I slowed to a near-stall, brought up both the throttle and elevator...voila! We had a hover! It wasn't the easiest to maintain which is more a testimony of my budding 3D skills and possibly not enough rear weight bias, but hover it did. Power was certainly no issue. That little RimFire motor had more than enough power and torque to send the Edge upward in nearly unlimited vertical flight. The designers were right regarding the use of this motor in both indoor and outdoor flight. It's a perfect match.

The two-cell pack was next and it proved to be an even better match to the RimFire 250. I now had somewhat better throttle control and vertical climb was unaffected.

Next step would be the video shoot with the Edge and I at my usual electric test site, the overflow/parade grounds at Sounthwest Community Church, Palm Desert, California. Once again, my videographer would be Ken Alan of Kaminsky Productions in nearby Cathedral City.

The shoot took place after the other Saturday afternoon flyers had left for the day, leaving us alone on a nearly dead calm afternoon. Even thought he grass was being reseeded, it was still too long for the Edge's tiny wheels. Since we were alone, we staged an ROG takeoff from the driveway behind the unofficial flight line. Power would be from the three-cell pack.

I've never seen a model take off in such a short stretch. It was airborne almost immediately upon giving it the gun and required once more that I throttle back to regain aileron control.

The experience was as before with nearly too much power with the three-cell pack and more balanced but slower response from the two-cell. Lower rates and throttle meant the same, lazy control as before; upping the throttle rates resulted in both inside and outside loops within the length of the fuselage and eye-blink fast rolls as before.

Experimentation with power on the landing showed that the Edge likes coming in under a bit of power. I kept the touchdown steep and short due to lack of room on my so-called runway.

I was starting to feel very comfortable flying the Edge, so on went the two-cell pack for low-altitude and low-airspeed 3D. The Edge responded with solid control and pinpoint accurate turns and rolls. This is a plane which is most at home at low speeds and high alpha moves. The battery was on the verge of cutting out, so I brought it in for a landing which was accompanied by a sickening "crack."

The landing was gentle, but the landing gear had hung up in the grass, tearing the horizontal fuselage. I'd brought along some CA and kicker and the Edge was good as new, perhaps stronger than before. The experience perfectly addressed my biggest concern about the model; how robust would it be in a minor mishap or even a non-mishap such as this?

Is This For a Beginner?

Sorry, but no. This is a model with wild flying characteristics. It's easy to assemble, but the result is a mid-wing, fully aerobatic sport plane with none of the characteristics of a trainer. Someone comfortable with aerobatic planes who'd like to try 3D will find the Edge to be a fun, inexpensive way to do so.

Flight Video/Photo Gallery

Downloads

Outstanding indoor video of the Edge 540 in action at Hobbico's official YouTube page

Conclusion

I truly enjoyed building, flying and writing about the ElectriFly by Great Planes Edge 540 EP Foam Aerobat. It's proof that you don't need an expensive, complicated airframe to go out and put on an air show in a gym or park. It can be used as a park flyer by someone easing their way into 3D flight and the control throws increased as skills and confidence are built. It's far too delicate and responsive to be used by a raw beginner, but it's a worthy and obtainable goal once one's skills improve. It's one of the newest winners in a series of winners from ElectriFly and it's my pleasure to give the Edge a full two thumbs up. I simply cannot wait to hone my 3D skills on it.

Sincere and heartfelt thanks are due to Carol Pesch, Hobbico's peerless public relation liason whom I've had the pleasure and privilege of working with before and with whom I look forward to working with again soon. My good friend Ken Alan of Kaminsky Productions is always ready, willing and able to shoot video. He truly enjoys sharing in these reviews. Our marvelous administrator Angela Haglund always gets a well-deserved round of thanks for coordinating all Hobbico-related reviews.

You are more than welcome to visit all the great RCGroups.com sites for the very latest and greatest in all things radio controlled. Just click on any of the links at the upper right-hand corner of the banner at the top of this page.

Until next time, have fun and go flying!

Lots and lots of pluses here, including:

  • Nothing but fun and easy to fly for the intermediate or advanced pilot
  • Stiff airframe is virtually flex-free with little more than a bit of CF reinforcement
  • Outstanding overall quality
  • Outstanding assembly manual
  • Quick and easy to assemble
  • The custom-fit assembly crutches assure a perfectly straight build
  • Affordably priced
  • The recommended components are a perfect match
  • Easily repaired with ordinary foam-safe CA
  • Absolutely stellar customer service, among the best of all of American industry based on personal experience
  • Equally at home indoors or out
  • Attractive, easy-to-see color scheme

Minuses are very few:

  • The Pro-Formance foam construction, while very light, is more brittle and easily broken than EPP "pool noodle" foam
  • Power leads on the recommended motor pass too close to the endbell
  • The assembly crutches are necessarily a loose fit to protect the finish, but the fit makes it difficult to get them aligned while handling and flipping the model
Last edited by DismayingObservation; Jan 04, 2011 at 06:09 PM..

Discussion

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Old Jan 05, 2011, 08:38 PM
Aut Viam Inveniam Aut Faciam
verticalspark's Avatar
United States, CO, Colorado Springs
Joined Oct 2008
4,051 Posts
Thats a great review! Im not sure if I am going to go with this or the Pluma...
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Old Jan 05, 2011, 11:25 PM
The Best or Nothing
RustyT3FT's Avatar
United States, IN, Fort Wayne
Joined Feb 2008
221 Posts
I've owned both the Extra 330SC (nearly identical to this Edge) and the Pluma...

After flying both in a 3D fashion, I wish I would have went a nother Pluma. It just felt more solid and looked better doing it...

ps the Pluma was easier to build as well...
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Old Jan 06, 2011, 11:41 AM
Registered User
ducatirdr's Avatar
United States, MA, Sutton
Joined Aug 2006
1,293 Posts
I build Depron and EEP planes with UHU Por. The ability to pull apart pieces before it sets is a great aid for me. Also it never turns the Depron or EEP brittle. This helps a lot when you canopy land

I built this kit up using a TURNIGY 2204-14T 19g Outrunner and Turnigy 6amp esc.Two HXT 500 servo's for the tail and a HXT900 for the aileron and you have a great indoor plane. Flies very light.

Had a Pluma and it flies heavier. Build this kit as light as you can for really low and slow flying.
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Old Jan 06, 2011, 10:39 PM
Registered User
Edhs's Avatar
the seventh planet
Joined Dec 2010
478 Posts
Mine weighs 5.7oz (160g) with this equipment
Hacker A10-9L
Dymond 4.7 x2
Bluebird 306 ailerons
X7 hacker esc
Berg rx
TP pro-lite V2/480
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Old Jan 08, 2011, 04:37 AM
www.danlandisinc.com
Dan Landis's Avatar
New York
Joined Apr 2005
276 Posts
Hey Guys,

I milled mine and got it down to 4.6 ozs.

3x Futaba 3114 lightened
1x Futaba 6004FF with out a case
1x AXi 2203
1x CC P10 lightened
1x Enerland 300 mah LiPo

It flies great!!
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Old Jan 09, 2011, 05:50 PM
Registered User
YOW
Joined Sep 2004
272 Posts
Hi Dan,

The milling is quite intriguing. Could you post some closeup shots of the milling that you did and how you reinforced the airframe as well.

Thanks
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 05:22 AM
www.danlandisinc.com
Dan Landis's Avatar
New York
Joined Apr 2005
276 Posts
Hi VictorYOW,

I am currently away traveling, but I will ask my father to take a few pics and I will try to get them up soon.

As for reinforcing it, I did not really do much extra. I still did the normal carbon work however I used much thinner carbon then what was in the kit. I also left off all of the plastic parts and the depron doublers on the front. I did use an extra brace one on each side of the canopy. I also made up my own landing gear and do not have wheels on them. And I used pull pull for the rudder and tail.

It is a great flying plane!!
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 04:48 PM
Registered User
YOW
Joined Sep 2004
272 Posts
Hi Dan,

There is no rush to post the pictures - just when you can find the time. I am looking at the GP Extra 330 sc as I like that plane better for some indoor flying. As my first indoor plane, I will keep it stock.

That is an absolutely amazing picture on www.danlandisinc.com of you hovering your TOC 40% Yak 54

Victor
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 05:01 PM
3D wing innovator
MikeRx's Avatar
Dallas, Texas
Joined Dec 2009
2,150 Posts
Nice Job Dan.
Id be interested in the milling and other lightening methods also..
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Old Jan 10, 2011, 05:51 PM
Registered User
Joined Jun 2009
28 Posts
Very good review! I had my LHS order me one and it looks great. Going to start the build in the next week or two. Been really busy with work.
Andy
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Old Jan 11, 2011, 01:39 AM
www.danlandisinc.com
Dan Landis's Avatar
New York
Joined Apr 2005
276 Posts
Hey Guys,

Glad you liked the pics on my web site.

As for other things that I did to save weight, I used lighter carbon for the landing gear, with no wheels, none of the plastic parts were used aside from the control horns. I took the case off the receiver, and the lower part of the servo case off and I milled it.

Close ups of my milled edge along with the peice for the dremal that I used.
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Old Jan 12, 2011, 07:00 AM
BadPilot
badpilotto's Avatar
United States, IL, Downers Grove
Joined Nov 2007
1,706 Posts
HOLYSMOKES!!! Dan you removed a "ton" of weight, so to speak. That is an extreme amount of weight for a plane that is normally less then 1/2 a LBS. Did it weaken the structure at all? It looks as though you could stick your finger through any of those milled areas or look to hard at one area and burn thought it, LOL.

John
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Old Jan 13, 2011, 12:02 AM
Plowin Dirt
deckert's Avatar
USA, WA, Benton City
Joined Oct 2007
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To heavy, to pricey and to delicate for what it costs.... I'm seeing 100% or more markup here. When I, or anyone, can build a same (better-stronger) size bird for <50% $ of this and have something that weighs 1.5oz less I have a problem. Damage the film covering and it's Scotchtape time. No film/scotch tape, no fly. Nice review and a nice bird but not worth the money. If it hits the 30$ market then maybe, (Arf builders) until then no way. 50 bucks? Someones dreaming or on drugs.

Dan
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Old Jan 13, 2011, 01:05 AM
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Dan Landis's Avatar
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Joined Apr 2005
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Hi John,

You do have to be careful not to put your fingers through it, but it flies great at this weight. And I will be doing the same thing on my next one. It only took about an hour or so to mill.

Thanks,
Dan
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