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Old Nov 04, 2005, 01:24 AM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
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Ultrafly Cessna beginners build thread

First I want to thank everyone who contributes to this great site. If I have any success in this hobby it will be because of people here willing to share what they know and help others out. I'm creating this thread to document the build and flight attempts of my second airplane, an Ultrafly Cessna. It will be written from the perspective of someone with little experience (I haven't put together anything like this before, and flight time on my first airplane, an Aerobird Commander was quite limited). I will be spelling out many details that might be boring to experienced builders/flyers but that I hope might be helpful to someone also doing their first build. I will also put down every stupid question and mistake I have/make (honest!).
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 01:27 AM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
Parts list

Ultrafly Cessna
TowerPro BM 2410-09 brushless motor
TowerPro 30A brushless ESC
Electric Power 2200 mah lipo battery (x2)
Electryfly PolyCharge lipo charger
JR XF631 Tx and R700 Rx
TowerPro 9g (x3) and 5g (x2) servos
PC power supply

For the benefit of those looking at their first major purchase, I will outline the reasons I had for selecting the above. For the plane I was looking for an aileron trainer (a bit of a stretch for a second airplane, I admit), all-foam (for durability), and at least 40 in. wingspan (more stability and hopefully better wind handling). The Ultrafly has the bonuses of two wing types (one for training and one more aerobatic) and possibility of adding flaps. Regarding the radio I felt that a 6 channel computer type was the best given what I am willing to commit to this hobby at the moment (the JR unit was the best second-hand available when I was making the purchases). The choice of brushless/lipo was primarily to have good flight duration (at least 15 min) as well as to have a bit more fun with the build. With my budget I could not afford good brand equipment for these. I've heard some not-so-good things about the TowerPro ESC so we'll have to wait and see.
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 10:09 AM
Hold my beer and watch this!
Jeremy Z's Avatar
Northern IL
Joined Oct 2005
2,380 Posts
I just bought the Ultrafly Cessna 182 for my dad, and will be referring him to this thread.

For what it's worth, do a search on 'Ultrafly Cessna182' (exactly as I typed it) and you will come up with a great thread from last year. An employee/designer from Ultrafly was on hand to answer questions. You should find that thread and copy the contents into Word for future reference. There are construction progress photos and everything. Maybe it would be best to add to that thread with any new issues? You could PM charlie2020 (I think that's the Ultrafly employee's username) if you had any questions and he wasn't answering.

Jeremy
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 12:37 PM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
Thanks for the pointer Jeremy. With your search I did find this excellent build thread

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=265603

and also the thread I think you refer to

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=227145

It's neat you can share the hobby with your dad. My dad passed away 3 years ago and I wish we had been able to do stuff like this together (makes me wonder if there are RC airplanes in heaven).

Although I don't think I can be as detailed as the other thread, I do want to capture as much of the newbie experience as possible (stuff besides just the build that I'll need to go through to get this plane in the air).
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 05:58 PM
Registered User
Sausalito Marin Cty, California, United States
Joined Aug 2004
890 Posts
If you haven't bought the TowerPro Brushless set up yet, don't. I have a much cheaper setup that will give you a lot of power and 20+ min flight times. I have the Ultrafly Cessna, it was my second plane, and I loved it. Still do. First off, use the Falcon 400 motor with your 3S lipos, the 3:1 gear box and use a 9X6 APC prop. The Falcon 400 motor will burn out in about 15 - 20 flights. Then just replace it with a Multiplex 7.2v Speed 400, for $10. With that set up, the Multiplex will pull 5.5 amps, and give you 23 min of WOT.(with a thunder power 2100 3S) It has 16 oz of thrust and 34 mph pitch speed. (Your Cessna will loop from level flight, roll and fly inverted on the beginner wing.... the one designed not to be able to let you get inverted) The Multiplex will last a long time. You will not be close to the limits on either your battery or motor. I now use the same setup on my GWS Corsair, only with a 1320 Thunder Power 3S Lipo, it will nearly hover. And, its a heck of a lot cheaper than going brushless, and gives you much longer flight times.
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 06:26 PM
Hold my beer and watch this!
Jeremy Z's Avatar
Northern IL
Joined Oct 2005
2,380 Posts
wab25, that sounds kind of dicey. The Falcon motor in the Cessna 182 was designed for 12V. If the Multiplex motor was designed for 7.2 V, I would think it'd burn out much more quickly.

jcalvarado, read that thread I linked to, paying particular attention to charlie2020's responses. He's a designer for Ultrafly, and he admits that it would be risky to use a 3s LiPoly with that motor. Safer (and cheaper!) would either be a 10 cell NiMH or a 2s LiPo, neither of which will burn out your motor. It seems cheaper up front to just go with 3s LiPos, but when you factor in a new motor every 10-15 flights, it's not so cheap.
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 07:38 PM
Registered User
Sausalito Marin Cty, California, United States
Joined Aug 2004
890 Posts
Quote:
wab25, that sounds kind of dicey. The Falcon motor in the Cessna 182 was designed for 12V. If the Multiplex motor was designed for 7.2 V, I would think it'd burn out much more quickly.
Well, I hear that its the amps that burn the motor out, not the volts. But, I'll let the experts here weigh in on that aspect. From experience, I got 20 flights out of the Falcon motor before it burned out on 3S lipos. I now have about 250 flights on the Multiplex in the Cessna and about 15 flights on the one in my Corsair. Both are doing strong. I believe the max amp rating on the Multiplex 6.5 or 7 amps. I am only pulling 5.5 at WOT, which I only do for take off. Anyway, real world experience, 20 of one 250+ of the other. Besides, if you burn out the multiplex, you are out $10. Still waiting to be out the $10 though.

By the way, the multiplex motor out lasted the battery.
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 08:31 PM
Hold my beer and watch this!
Jeremy Z's Avatar
Northern IL
Joined Oct 2005
2,380 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by wab25
Well, I hear that its the amps that burn the motor out, not the volts. But, I'll let the experts here weigh in on that aspect. From experience, I got 20 flights out of the Falcon motor before it burned out on 3S lipos. I now have about 250 flights on the Multiplex in the Cessna and about 15 flights on the one in my Corsair. Both are doing strong. I believe the max amp rating on the Multiplex 6.5 or 7 amps. I am only pulling 5.5 at WOT, which I only do for take off. Anyway, real world experience, 20 of one 250+ of the other. Besides, if you burn out the multiplex, you are out $10. Still waiting to be out the $10 though.

By the way, the multiplex motor out lasted the battery.
You are right on that, wab25. Actually, it is the power (in watts) that would burn out a motor. A motor is a load, which dissipates power. Power = Amps x Volts. Therefore, more current (in amps) through the same load would generate more power (in watts) and burn the motor out sooner.

If you're speaking from experience, I cannot argue. The Multiplex motor must have less resistance, which would mean less power dissipated by the motor, and a longer life.

Based on your experience, I will buy a Multiplex motor if/when my T-Hawk motor burns out.

Jeremy
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 08:36 PM
Hold my beer and watch this!
Jeremy Z's Avatar
Northern IL
Joined Oct 2005
2,380 Posts
All the beginner info you need, in one handy Word document

I just compiled Ed Andersons Ultra-useful beginner essays into a Word file and hosted it at my website. This way, you can save the whole schmeer directly to your hard drive for easy reference later, without having to find the threads. Here's the link. You can right-click, then choose 'save as' and save it, or just click to open it.

Ed Anderson's (username: aeajr) Tips for RC Flight Beginners

I hope it helps you as much as it has helped me.

Jeremy
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 09:06 PM
Registered User
Sausalito Marin Cty, California, United States
Joined Aug 2004
890 Posts
Quote:
Based on your experience, I will buy a Multiplex motor if/when my T-Hawk motor burns out.
I have no experience with the T-Hawk, so it might not work so well. I just know that this combo works well:
multiplex 400 7.2v motor
3S Lipo
3:1 gearbox
9x6 prop

The gear ratio and prop have a lot to do with the current drawn. Since I have never worked with a T-Hawk, I wouldn't say yeah or ney on this motor for that application. I was just suggesting it as a good setup for the Cessna, perhaps you could add that to the little write up you have there. Its similar to a cheap brushless set up, only I haven't found a brushless set up that will give me that combination of power and flight time.
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 09:18 PM
Registered User
Taipei Sung Shan, Taiwan
Joined Feb 2004
683 Posts
If you use 8 cell 9.6V on the original set up, it would last for at least 50 flights! The power with 9x6V is good enough to do loop. That is enough for a beginner, don't you think?

Charlie
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Old Nov 04, 2005, 11:57 PM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
Thank you guys for all the suggestions/information. As it is I have the parts I mentioned earlier, so I'm pretty much going to have to go with them. I probably should have asked for advice earlier; on the other hand if the parts work close to advertised I think they should be Ok. If not, I have the info you've given to fall back on. I figure at most I will need to get a brushed ESC to go with the stock setup, and maybe get a replacement motor later. I would think even if 3S lipo is too much V I could always use reduced rates on the throtle and limit V that way? Anyways here are pics of what I have so far. BTW how can I link to pictures in my gallery (as opposed to attaching them to the post)? Thanks.
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Old Nov 05, 2005, 04:59 PM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
Where to buy

For what is worth, here is where I ended up getting my stuff from. This is not an endorsement of these sources over any other, although I should note I got excellent service from all of them.

XUSHOBBY - motor, esc, batteries and servos
Tower Hobbies - plane, charger, misc. parts
RC Groups - TX & RX
Ebay - PC power supply

Starting from nothing, I ended up spending around $450, which was around 50% more than I had budgeted (I guess that happens sometimes). Originally I had intended to buy more used stuff, but as it turned out this is not a good idea for items that wear out. Getting a good deal in RCGroups is common if you are willing to wait. Ebay turned out to be a dissappointment. You would be amazed how many times used items auction off for more than what new ones go for elsewhere (I guess some people do not do research).
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Old Nov 05, 2005, 05:39 PM
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is300zx's Avatar
Daly City, CA
Joined Nov 2004
230 Posts
Yeah I have the same experiece with ebay. Too many bidders that overbid. They even overbid you at the very last second. Very disappointing. I have had very good luck with finding stuff on the for sales forum. Some of the items I've bought there are new in the box and ended up costing much less compared to buying from the online stores. Well goodluck with the build. Hope everything turns out well.
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Old Nov 05, 2005, 05:43 PM
Juan Alvarado
Houston, TX
Joined Mar 2005
50 Posts
First a little diversion

Most chargers (including the one I got) work off of 12V (typically supplied by something like a car battery). I intend to do most of my charging at home so I needed a power supply. A good PS (at least 10A) can cost $50 or more, but an inexpensive alternative is to modify a PC power supply (I got one for $6). I followed the instructions found at the R/C Battery Clinic which are clear and easy to follow. The only caveat is that the motherboard plug diagram shows the pin assignments as you look to the motherboard, not the connector, so you have to look at the back of the connector to properly locate the pins.

The PS mods require soldering. Initially I had intended not to do any soldering because this is an area where a beginner is liable to do a fairly poor job. I was going to use Anderson Powerpole connectors throughout. These do not require soldering and can be attached with an inexpensive crimping tool. However I found later that the Powerpoles were a bit too bulky for the ESC to motor connection, and decided to switch to to standard bullet connectors for this, which need to be soldered. The PS mods gave me a chance to practice soldering before doing it on the plane.
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Last edited by jcalvarado; Nov 05, 2005 at 06:03 PM.
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