3D Hobby Shop 47" Extra 300 SHP V3 Review
3D Hobby Shop Extra 300 SHP 47Ē
A Park Flyerís Perspective
Edited with follow up March 27
Hi, my name is Jeff, and Iím addicted to RC flying.
My addiction to RC flying started in May of 2010 with the purchase of a Hobbyzone Super Cub Ė a plane that I consider the ideal first airplane. Iíve grown through a series of airplanes including a Parkzone T-28D, a Parkzone Stinson Reliant SR-10, a couple of ultra micros, and a coax heli. Iím what I would describe as an intermediate pilot, but clearly a park flyer. After 8 months and roughly 400 flights, I found that I gravitate to the T-28, and love to fly aerobatics, and wanted more. Much more.
I started the search for the next airframe with a query on RCGROUPS, looking for ideas based upon my experience. The discussion is here:
Quite a few good ideas came forward, and after a few weeks of research I decided to go with the 3D Hobby Shop Extra 300 SHP 47Ē. The current state of the art is the V3 airframe. All of the SHPís are very highly rated, and a great deal of information/support can be found on RCGROUPS. I donít need to repeat here all the accolades that you can read on RCG for 3D Hobby Shop, and their customer support. Its been said over and over, its exceptional.
At the recommendation of a fellow RCG member, I contacted Jeff at plane-funrc.com. Jeff was very helpful in making recommendations and build suggestions, and I ordered a red SHP from him. The configuration is:
I cant say enough good things about JeffÖ as Iím a park flyer, not an experienced 3D jock, I was full of questions, many of which probably seemed mundane or stupid to him. But he always responded quickly to my emails, and proactively provided hints and tips that I used throughout the process. Nice to know that there is a guy close to me that understands 3DHS airframes!!
I pulled the manual from the 3DHS web site in advance of arrival of my Extra 300, and visited my LHS to secure a few things that I didnít have in my park flyers kit bag:
A quick note about the AR6120 Ė it replaced the AR6200 (which is what I originally planned to use). The AR6210 lists at the same price as the AR6200 adds DSMX technology to the receiver. DSMX adds additional security/confidence when you are flying at LARGE events with MANY DSM radios active. My current DX6i doesnít support DSMX, but is upgradeable for $75. I donít need that now, but nice to know I can get there if the day comes.
Out of Box Experience
3DHS has a spectacular reputation for safely packing their airplanes, and its well deserved. Everything was securely wrapped in plastic, and taped into the box so that it doesnít move during shipping. Unlike the Parkzone products Im used to, the plane is not packed in styrofoam. Obviously there are a LOT more parts, and Jeff packed the rest of my ďcomboĒ into the box.
Everything arrived safely. There were some wrinkles in the covering, but I expected that in the dry climate of Colorado. With the guidance Iíve seen on RCG, I expect Ill be able to get those out with a little heat gun work later.
Overall, the packaging generated a lot of confidence in the quality of the product.
I set up my workspace in my garage so that I would have lots of room, have easy access to power and tools, and most importantly, avoid getting in trouble with my better half. Unlike the PZ models Iíve assembled before, I didnít expect this one can be completed in a couple of hours on the dinner table.
I followed IPSMOTORS build video closely
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...287812&page=82 It was an awesome tool to complete the build. Frankly, I donít know if I would have succeeded with out the videos. While the manual is well written, there were many questions that were answered simply by looking at the video. The video goes in quite a different order than the manual. I eventually just used the manual as a reference, and followed the video.
This is a much more involved process than assembling the run of the mill Parkzone foamie, and much more rewarding as well. Iím not the most skilled hand with a bottle of CA yet, so by then end of day one, I had successfully glued my fingers together more than once. Fortunately, I did have a bottle of de-bonder handy, which helped with cleanup of my fingers, and a couple of drips of CA in the wrong places.
Because this was my first ARF build, I took my good old time, and it took a couple of good days to complete. A few notes:
After completing the build, but before trimming, I taxi tested the SHP in my cul-de-sac. It was obvious from the first moment I applied power that this is one very powerful airplane. In taxi testing, It tracked very nicely with no adjustments required.
Trimming and Flight Preparation
There is an unbelievable amount of guidance available about setting up the SHP available online ar RCG and other web sites, much of which is oriented to expert pilots with at least some 3D experience. As a park flyer moving up into 3D, the idea of an airframe capable of twisting itself inside out can be a little intimidating. Just watch a few videos of the SHP in action. Fortunately, Doc Austin on RCG has taken an interest in helping the uninitiated get a safe start with the SHP.
A visit to Docís thread http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1318268 is well worth your time as a park flyer. Doc has carefully explained the SHP for those of us new to 3DHS products and 3D flying, and makes a compelling case that the Extra 300 SHP can be tamed to be a sport machine than can grow in capability as your skills grow towards 3D. Not only is the advice excellent, the videoís are entertaining and compelling.
After looking through the various threads and the SHP manual, I decided that I would take a 3 phase approach to my setup. Summarized here are the settings as presented in the Doc Austin thread, as well as the included Extra 300 SHP 47Ē manual
I intend to progress through 3 phases with the SHP. I used phase I as the settings for my first two flights:
Phase I - Learn the airplane (without rekitting it)
Phase II Ė More Aggressive Precision Flying
Phase III Ė Full 3D flight
Control Surface Scott Stoops Full 3D
I expected that the combination of flying the PZ T-28 and Stinson would be good background for the SHP, and it was. The T-28 taught me the dynamics of flying a low/mid wing plane, and it was my aileron trainer. The Stinson taught me about takeoff and landings on a tail dragger with more sophistication and challenge than the Super Cub (which you can pretty much just firewall to take off). Iím glad I had both of those experiences under my belt before advancing the throttle on the SHP for the first time.
On maiden day, I flew the T-28 first, and tuned up my aerobatics (it had been almost 5 weeks), and then flew the Stinson a couple of times (mostly take offs and landings) to get my taildragger touch back. I finally got the Extra 300 ready, and did quite a bit of taxi testing, both to get the feel of the airplane, but also to make sure the tail wheel was correctly aligned. After putting in a fresh pack (Turnigy 2200mah), it was time to give her a go. Take off was completely uneventful. A gentle acceleration with a little right rudder and it took off nicely.
I flew for about a minute on the Doc Austin low rates, and immediately was comfortable. I think the SHP is actually easier to fly than the Stinson. Its responsive, with absolutely NO bad habits. It goes where you point it Ė with precision. Loops and rolls are easy. After kicking it up to high rates (Docís sport high rates that is), the roll rate is spectacular. With the Turnigy 2200 loaded up, the SHP will climb seemingly endlessly on the vertical line, rolling all the way. Cubans were precise.
I was a little nervous about the landing, as the wind was a bit gusty. It was pretty obvious that the SHP was going to be a floater. It flies SO nicely slow, and after a bit of roll axis excitement on final, I was able to settle the SHP softly onto the street.
The second flight was on an e-Flight 2100 pack. It flew nicely on this pack, but I immediately missed the punch of the higher discharge rate. The second landing was a bit harder (stalled about a foot over the runway), but no damage. All in all, a fantastic maiden day!
A buddy captured video of the maiden, it can be found here:
Itís a pretty rough edit, Ill fix it up later. If you dont see anything else, note the vertical line at 2:57. The SHP climbs straight up rolling until I backed off the power. This is something Ive longed for with the T-28 for a LONG time.
Overall Evaluation: 12 out of 10. Itís a fantastic airplane, built with impeccable quality, and the support is outstanding. It flies like a dream, and appropriately trimmed, is an easy step for the parkflyer. I expect to move to phase II of my settings next time out.
If you are a parkflyer now, and looking for just a little more, buy this plane. Do it now. Donít hesitate. You wont regret it.
I have to say that the support from Jeff, and Scott were second to none. The build videos by IPSMOTORS are invaluable to the new owners like me. As a fifty something, Iíve had a lot of customer support experiences, some bad, many good, but this was outstanding. Its very obvious that they have spent a lot of time thinking about how people build and fly their products, as well as interact with them. I now understand the seemingly endless lovefest for 3DHS that Iíve read on RCG. I have to admit, Iím now a full blown 3DHS addict, and Iím certain my next airframe will be one of theirs.
Folow-up : March 27
I've now flown the SHP 8 times, mostly in higher winds than I would have wished for. I find that it is easier to fly in wind than my foamies (which surprises me given how light the SHP is). Landing can be a little challenging in wind as the SHP floats a lot - its hard to convince it to stop flying. I'm getting better at it as I get more flights under my belt.
I've really only had one heart in the throat moment so far. I was going ballistic on a vertical line, and added a snap roll at the top. It happened very fast, and was almost straight up from me. I lost orientation for a bit, and the controls seemed unresponsive. I wasnt sure what I needed to do next. So I just pulled back on the throttle, and centered the controls (thanks Scott Stoops). The SHP settled down, I figured out where I was, and flew away safely (maybe with my thumbs shaking a little).
Thanks to Dacono Air, I was able to get some measurements on the SHP power system:
Amps : 39 peak, 37 steady
Watts : 430 peak, 414 steady
These were taken with a brand new 13 x 6.5 prop (dont ask why), and a Turnigy 2200 pack. I dont know if these are particularly good or bad, but they didnt seem surprising at all.
Folow-up : May 2
On April 24, I moved to "Phase II" settings above. Actually, I'm a touch more aggressive than that, as I set the aileron throw on high rates to 1" of deflection. The roll rate is breathtaking.
Ive concluded that this is actually one of the easier planes to fly that I own. It has plenty of power to get out of trouble, and it goes where ya point it. Which is nice.
I'm fiddling with some "3D ish" moves. Ive managed to hover about 75" up for 2-3 seconds, and I'm trying to get my guts up for a blender. I can do both in the sim now, but its a little different in the real world (crashes aren't free anymore).
I have NO regrets with this plane. I have 23 hops now for a total of 103 minutes in the air. I have nothing but smiles...
Folow-up : December 21, 2011
Well, its been a great season with the SHP. Much of the summer I was away on business, but I did pick up 3 more Turnigy 2200 packs so at least when I did get to fly, I would fly 5-7 hops. I'm up to 119 flights now, with a total of 574 minutes in the air. I've cranked the throws up about as far as I can go without adding the long arms (which I have, I just havent installed them yet).
My 3D skills are progressing, albeit slower than I would like. Im comfortable with KE, KE circles, Blenders, Lomcevaks, Elevators, etc. I still have not mastered S L O W rolls (something I really want to get done), or rolling circles, etc. I need more sim time, and Im thinking about an EPP foamie so that I can build low altitude skills without risking re-kitting the SHP. I also need to put the SHP on the bench, and re-trim everything, as I have done a lot of field adjustments without benefit of the throw gauge.
The SHP is clearly my comfort plane now, and is my favorite airframe by a large margin. It was the PERFECT transition from pure sport flying to more advanced aerobatics.
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