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Old Aug 23, 2012, 11:16 AM
dbc
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United States, FL, Brooksville
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I got two more flights on this plane today after it's maiden last evening. My impressions are pretty much the same as I described in my post after the maiden.

I flys ok but with very little power. Control response is very slow, actually sluggish. Flying this is probably what piloting the Queen Mary feels like.

Rolls take forever, at least 4-5 seconds to complete one. Small loops are ok but not near enough power for a moderate or large one. Inverted takes a good deal of "down" elevator to sustain and requires full power. It will execute stall turns, immelmans, etc but never feels comfortable being forced to do this.

I know that these observations are pretty much what's expected from this sort of plane and I'll admit that gliders have never done much for me - so others may well be very happy with it doing other chores such as camera toting. But, for me, there's not much joy in flying it.

I'll probably fly it a few more times before finding it a new home.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbc View Post
I got two more flights on this plane today after it's maiden last evening. My impressions are pretty much the same as I described in my post after the maiden.

I flys ok but with very little power. Control response is very slow, actually sluggish. Flying this is probably what piloting the Queen Mary feels like.

Rolls take forever, at least 4-5 seconds to complete one. Small loops are ok but not near enough power for a moderate or large one. Inverted takes a good deal of "down" elevator to sustain and requires full power. It will execute stall turns, immelmans, etc but never feels comfortable being forced to do this.

I know that these observations are pretty much what's expected from this sort of plane and I'll admit that gliders have never done much for me - so others may well be very happy with it doing other chores such as camera toting. But, for me, there's not much joy in flying it.

I'll probably fly it a few more times before finding it a new home.

Do you have your aileron control throws maxed out both mechanically and electronically?
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:01 PM
dbc
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No I don't, Doubletap. I'm sure I could improve the roll rate somewhat with more travel.


I flew the FMS 1280, a plane we both admire, directly after the SSS. It's clear to me that the FMS is a lot more fun to fly. Faster, quicker responding and just more engaging - it is one of the few EZ style planes I really enjoy.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:13 PM
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No I don't, Doubletap. I'm sure I could improve the roll rate somewhat with more travel.


I flew the FMS 1280, a plane we both admire, directly after the SSS. It's clear to me that the FMS is a lot more fun to fly. Faster, quicker responding and just more engaging - it is one of the few EZ style planes I really enjoy.

Well, yeah, the FMS Easy Trainer 1280 is a much smaller and lighter model therefore more nimble/responsive, and it's exceptionally well designed, whereas, this SSS, is not outstanding in any way as far as I can tell, It's just a huge EZ style model for a reasonable price, so there is no comparison really.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:27 PM
dbc
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I agree completely. The FMS plane is exceptionally well designed - and uses slightly better quality components as well. The clever but simple plastic push rods to secure the FMS wings neatly solve a problem that plagues nearly all other similar planes - and it's a problem with the SSS too. The servos and hardware are better too. I'm very attuned to good design and execution - and the FMS demonstrates that. The SSS doesn't.

As you say, the SSS is not outstanding in any way - except it's size. A few posts back I called the plane and it's supplied components "minimally satisfactory". I still think that is a fair description.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by dbc View Post
I agree completely. The FMS plane is exceptionally well designed - and uses slightly better quality components as well. The clever but simple plastic push rods to secure the FMS wings neatly solve a problem that plagues nearly all other similar planes - and it's a problem with the SSS too. The servos and hardware are better too. I'm very attuned to good design and execution - and the FMS demonstrates that. The SSS doesn't.

As you say, the SSS is not outstanding in any way - except it's size.

Roger That! But I'll keep my SSS in my hangar because it IS different, and because I have an addiction of this style of toy plane
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbc View Post
I got two more flights on this plane today after it's maiden last evening. My impressions are pretty much the same as I described in my post after the maiden.

I flys ok but with very little power. Control response is very slow, actually sluggish. Flying this is probably what piloting the Queen Mary feels like.

Rolls take forever, at least 4-5 seconds to complete one. Small loops are ok but not near enough power for a moderate or large one. Inverted takes a good deal of "down" elevator to sustain and requires full power. It will execute stall turns, immelmans, etc but never feels comfortable being forced to do this.

I know that these observations are pretty much what's expected from this sort of plane and I'll admit that gliders have never done much for me - so others may well be very happy with it doing other chores such as camera toting. But, for me, there's not much joy in flying it.

I'll probably fly it a few more times before finding it a new home.
It might be interesting to see how this plane performs with the CG further aft. Your description sounds as if it may be nose heavy. I moved the CG on my V1 SS back a ways and it becomes much more sporty. Less down elevator required inverted. Generally just a lot more fun, and it thermals better as well. But then, it has a good bit lighter wing loading, 7.9 oz/sq for the SS against a reported 9.8 oz/sq for for the SSS (probably at the 5.25 pound weight since that is what is required to get the suggested CG)..

Gord
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Gordks View Post
It might be interesting to see how this plane performs with the CG further aft. Your description sounds as if it may be nose heavy. I moved the CG on my V1 SS back a ways and it becomes much more sporty. Less down elevator required inverted. Generally just a lot more fun, and it thermals better as well. But then, it has a good bit lighter wing loading, 7.9 oz/sq for the SS against a reported 9.8 oz/sq for for the SSS (probably at the 5.25 pound weight since that is what is required to get the suggested CG)..

Gord

Yeah, the recommended CG for this model is on the conservative end, which is typically nose heavy, I think the CG can be moved rearward quite a bit with positive effect to the flight characteristics.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:45 PM
dbc
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I agree that moving the CG slightly rearward might improve it's flight. I just haven't tinkered with it yet.

And please understand, I'm not knocking this plane. But it's pretty clear to me that it's real strength is going to be as a workhorse - hauling a good amount of gear and staying aloft for quite a while.
But I don't think it will ever be a very good sport plane. Unless you want to upgrade the entire power system and replace all the servos. And probably rehinge all the control surfaces, too.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 02:52 PM
dbc
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United States, FL, Brooksville
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I have all aileron control rods all in the outer holes of both servo and control horns. About a 1 to 1 ratio. The aileron throw is a little over 1" and the servos are already chattering at the limits. Increasing the mechanical advantage by moving the rod in on the control horn is just going to make the servos complain more. They just dont have much torque. Solution: stronger servos and/or rehinge the ailerons.

And this is how it begins......

The never ending " upgrading" of components. Been there. Done that. Many times. No fun for me anymore.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 04:20 PM
dbc
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United States, FL, Brooksville
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Nothing to do this afternoon so I removed 62g of ballast (now using 374g of battery and ballast). CG shifted rearward 10mm to 110mm.

I've been flying off of short grass and into a slight headwind, probably no more than 5-7mph for the first three flights - about 70 ft or so and it was airborne.

Dead calm for this ROG and it was a little hairy. Lumbered along for over 130ft before I had to horse it off to avoid obstacles. It was clearly the most exciting part of the flight! It reminded me of the Spruce Goose takeoff attempt in the Howard Hughes movie. Seemed to go on forever
.
Once airborne it flew a little nicer with the rearward CG. Not sure if maybe the loss of over 1/8 lb of it's AUW didn't account for a good part of the improvement.

We've been avoiding the elephant in the room here - it's not got anywhere near enough power to be "sporty". Enough to fly "ok" but that's it. It's going to need a lot more power to be considered even minimally sporty.

Another important observation: the battery pack and ESC both come down too warm. There is no provision for airflow cooling through the fuse and it's going to need this. Another example of poor design.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 04:43 PM
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San Francisco, CA
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dbc, how does the CG feel to you at 110mm? more neutral? still a little nose heavy? any stall characteristics or tendancies to turn on it's own? do you plan on moving the CG back even further?

I'm at the recommended 100mm now and am batting a porpoising issue. A little bit of down stick and the plane immediately wants to climb back up. It is also difficult to keep it pointing straight, constantly wanting to turn. it seems like I'm constantly fiddling with the elevator trim.

Power off gliding is very slow and graceful with no stall tendency, and so I'm leaning to it being nose heavy rather than tail...but then again, the constant wanting to turn makes me wonder if it's tail heavy...ideas? the area i fly in is also quite windy, so it may just be the wind. hard to judge.

Had another uneventful 20 min fpv flight today.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 04:56 PM
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Des Moines IA
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My friends plane will be here on the 27th and the first thing for me anyway will be looking at the power system. From what i have read that is a very weak part as we do intend to fly with cameras. I think that this plane needs somthing in the 500 watt range so we just might try 4s and see what happens as we like pushing things a tad
Next would be the cg and see if that could be changed.
Funny how you wan't to change things to your friends planes as its his money
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 05:05 PM
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Des Moines IA
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Another important observation: the battery pack and ESC both come down too warm.

Was it warm or hot warm is ok but hot not so much.
Could you hold it for more than 10 sec or even better an IR temp reading.
There are people who stick the esc on the outside of the fuse for cooling on the EZ threads.
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Old Aug 23, 2012, 05:09 PM
dbc
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United States, FL, Brooksville
Joined Apr 2008
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I'm pretty comfortable with 110mm but it probably wouldn't hurt to experiment with it a little further back.

I've also noticed the slight instability, especially with a little wind. Mine is noticable mostly in yaw rather than pitch motion. I'm thinking that the short tail moment (due to the short boom in relation to the wingspan) might be causing this. I've seen this exact behavior in another plane with a short boom.
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