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Old Oct 03, 2005, 05:12 AM
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Great Planes ElectriFly PT-Electric Trainer Kit 56"

My son wants his own plane to build over the winter.

He is very good at building and is helping me with my P51 build. But he wants his own plane and radio.

We were looking through our Tower catalog and we saw one that looks to be a nice trainer and it has everything but a battery and the covering.

It's the Great Planes ElectriFly PT-Electric Trainer Kit 56". We'd like to get him this plane for Christmas. Has anyone here built this plane? Does anyone have any opinions on this one? I'd like to know any good or bad points with it.

Also, if anyone has any other ideas as to a similar plane for comparison, I'd appreciate it. This one is only $70 for everything, and it's a high wing trainer. I haven't come across another plane that comes complete, yet still is a balsa builder's plane. We don't want any RTF's, as the build is important to him.

Thanks.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 06:31 AM
Random Flier
Oxford (UK) and Mtn View CA (USA)
Joined Nov 2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markmm
<<... if anyone has any other ideas as to a similar plane for comparison, I'd appreciate it. This one is only $70 for everything, and it's a high wing trainer. I haven't come across another plane that comes complete, yet still is a balsa builder's plane. We don't want any RTF's, as the build is important to him.>>
I'd suggest looking at the SQuiRT 700 or its smaller 400 cousin.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 07:51 AM
Naturally altered
Joined Feb 2005
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A PT-40 was my first glow plane, it was an excellent flyer. Actually all GP planes are good flyers (and I have owned many over the years). I would think the PT-Electric is no different. My very first one was a Mirage, electric, pretty much the same size as the PT-E. It`s a nice size plane for a beginner that has an instructor to rely upon. With a standard 600 class motor and a 7 cells Nicad battery, they are on the low side of things powerwise. If the PT motor set-up is direct drive, i would suggest investing an extra $15 for a 3:1 Master Airscrew gearbox and a 12x8 prop right from the start. The principle of gearing motors is that larger props are more efficient, that single low cost upgrade will make the plane fly with much more authority.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 08:01 AM
IWC
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The Squirt 700. Dittos to Isvana. The fuselage is so big you can fit a coke can in it.

Non-steerable nosegear on the GP PT Trainer.
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Last edited by IWC; Oct 03, 2005 at 08:12 AM.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 09:02 AM
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How much of a build is the SQuiRT 700?

We really don't want something that is just a few pieces to slap together quickly.

He really wants to do a complete build process over the winter.

The SQuiRT 700 looks like a great plane...just need some more info.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 09:20 AM
IWC
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http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=377171
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 10:51 AM
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Thanks for the link. I may get that one, but I'm still not sure. If Tower sold it, it would be the plane for sure.

However, my son wants a plane to build AND a radio...$$$

Anyone else here ever build this Great Planes ElectriFly PT-Electric Trainer Kit 56"?

It looks like a comparable plane to the Squirt.

I'm not opposed to doing some mods to it...perhaps add ailerons, different motor/prop at some point.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 11:57 AM
IWC
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If you can do a conversion look at the Carl Goldberg Freedom 20, a Cessna look-a-like with steerabale nosegear and ailerons. You can download the construction manual for free. www.carlgoldbergproducts.com
It sound like your son wants a challenge.

Electric Flyers Only is a web-site where this plane is listed as a canadate for electric power.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 05:20 PM
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If you want an easy conversion to do that many people have done already, the Sig LT-25 is good. And a proven good flyer with E-Power.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 08:48 PM
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I have done an electric conversion of the LT-25 and can confirm that it is an outstanding trainer. However, it is about 4 pounds and thus costs a lot more to equip than would a Squirt. I have also build several of Steven's kits (but not the Squirt) and found all of them to be great builds. Given the reduced costs of the lighter Squirt compared with the LT-25, I would recomment it over the LT-25 as a first trainer. True, the Squirt is not available from Tower, but IMHO Bill Stevens gives better service than Tower anyhow. However, you will need to get some of the components from other sources, as he does not stock all the parts you will need to complete the Squirt.

Either way LT-25 or Squirt, I think you will be very pleased with both the build and the flying.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 10:48 PM
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Get the Squirt 400 or 700. SA planes are a pure joy to build. No hassle with cutting etc.. I didn't use a single pin or knife while doing the basic framing on my G-Ride.
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Old Oct 03, 2005, 10:57 PM
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markmm
I've built the PT series from the electric that you are refering to up to and including the PT-60. The kits are well enginered and the quality of the materials was good. The illustrated instruction book takes you through the build process step by step.
The E version has some pros and cons that should be addressed.
Pro's:
Excellent flyer--stable and easy to fly.
Easy build-- Great instructions and good parts fit for the die cuts (see con's below)

Con's:
Fuse has some weak points--The fuse front is not as sturdy as it could be when all the cut outs are removed.
No steerable nose wheel-- not too much of a problen if you hand launch
Fuse stringers must be accuratly cut--a youngster might need some help here.

All in all not a bad first build airplane.





Now I have never built a SQuirt but I was most definitly impressed with both the quality of the kit and its flying capabilities that I saw at this years NEAT Fair. Its a laser cut kit using failsafe building techniques similar to those developed in the Japanese auto industry (These guys did their homework) The plane uses very inexpensive motors and gets top notch performance that may be a bit too much for a beginner. Needless to say it on my future build list. There is a smaller version that may be more suited to a new pilot.

BM
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Old Oct 04, 2005, 12:07 PM
IWC
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I paid $28 for a Graupner Speed 700 Motor at my LHS for the Squirt 700. Castle Creations 35 amp speed control was about $45. The 3 inch wheels are included in the kit.
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Old Oct 04, 2005, 03:05 PM
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The 700 sized motors run 9.95 from surplus shops.

http://robotcombat.com/marketplace_motorsmisc.html
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Old Oct 04, 2005, 03:08 PM
IWC
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That what I get for not asking.
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