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Old Feb 22, 2007, 05:04 PM
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Whitley Bay, UK
Joined Aug 2005
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North Seas Fleet

Hi all,

Just thought I'd share my experiences with you....

Terrible, just terrible. Ordered the LA sub from them last summer. Sub was delayed by a couple of weeks, with no real explanation. Arrived is a cardboard box packed with polystyerene beans. Not packed particularly well really.

Several months on I still haven't put the sub in the water. Haven't installed all the radio gear as I've simply been too p!ssed off with the sub every time I look at it. Quality is extremely poor and feels like something that has been rushed and bodged together. The sub externally had an awful lot of things wrong with it, thinkgs like paint drips and drainage holes not in line with the others. Also the control surfaces are linked to control horns on the control surface itself, much like the Robbe Seawolf. On the Seawolf I can understand this, but on something more than twice the cost I was a little disappointed to say the least. There also isn't much movement in the control surfaces so had to break them off to sand down and then will re-fix them on again.

Internally it's simply a mess. 'Goop' all over the place, nothing smoothed off. The hatches fit on with several nuts. Even the hatches don't have straight edges.

The top hull is really quite heave. so much so that of the top cover is on the sub and you put it on a flat surface then it tips over. If the top hull is not on the sub and the bottom hull is on a flat surface then it lists to the left. This is without putting anything inside yet either.

Comms with Nich from NorthSeasFleet were not the speediest. I realise that people running business's themselves can be busy, but sometimes it would take well over a week to get a return e-mail.

The only other sub I've had in the past was a Robbe Seawolf (V1) some years ago. It was a great kit and only lacked static diving. Was always reliable and put together very well. Couldn't wait to get it done. This I've had for over 6 months and still feel let down every time I look at the thing. Tonight I got it out of the shed to try again, but it's sat on the kitchen table (listing to the left obviosuly).

If I didn't have a baby on the way I'd stump up the cash for a different kit.

Gutted!
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Old Feb 23, 2007, 03:42 AM
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Ohio, IL
Joined Feb 2006
241 Posts
Thats unfortunate news. Though for the price they sell'em at, I think its what I would have expected. The price they charge is less than what I would expect a scale FG sub kit too cost. To build to a good standard (internel control surfaces, time tasken to drill out , file, sand and paint, get everyhting to fit) takes many hours. Thats why the RTR scale subs start at closer to the $2500 mark. BTW, all subs will roll like that on the table, especially those laid up with heavy FG, like the Sheerline kits. It the water the watertight box will give it buoyancy to keep it up right and they sail fine. Sorry to hear you did't get what you were expecting, but for the money you paid thats what I would have expected, I don''t hink you would have got better anywhere else for those low $'s. Thats why its better to buy a kit, it will cost you a lot more in $'s and time but you get what you were want.
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Old Feb 23, 2007, 06:53 AM
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Whitley Bay, UK
Joined Aug 2005
10 Posts
I know what you mean about the cost. However for just another 100 or so I could have got a Sheerline Akula.

You live and learn!
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Old Feb 26, 2007, 06:42 PM
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Whitley Bay, UK
Joined Aug 2005
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Few other 'issues'.... The supplied pump generates so much interferance that it causes the servo controlling the microswotch to judder so much that it keeps switching the pump off!

3 leaks in the 'water tight' compartments have been fixed with epoxy and now found a leak with one of the hatch covers.

The worst thing is the weight of the top hull. Putting it on makes the sub turn turtle....I should have bought a Robbe....!
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Old Feb 27, 2007, 09:10 AM
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Joined Jul 2004
20 Posts
The topweight is certainly a problem on my North Seas Kilo too. I've solved this by epoxying on an external keel of flat lead. I've also replaced the pump, the hatch covers and made up a new brass rudder to replace the original ABS one. I suspect the planes may have to have similar treatment. The boat is languishing on a shelf at the moment whilst I prepare my Small World Models version for a forthcoming sub day. The SWM one (below) is in a different class altogether - but then it is more expensive.

Andrew

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Old Feb 27, 2007, 07:34 PM
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Whitley Bay, UK
Joined Aug 2005
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That Kilo looks nice! Let me know how you get on.
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Old Mar 01, 2007, 05:10 PM
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Whitley Bay, UK
Joined Aug 2005
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Quick update for you all. It seems that perhaps we can all blow off steam a little too quickly in the heat of the moment - and I think that I'm possibly one to blame!

I've been speaking to Nick from North Sea Fleets and he's been really helpful. Problems I have can be sorted simply and Nick has very gratefully offered to do this on my behalf. I really should have spoken to Nick before posting on here. Nick has been a gent through this and I would do business with him again. In fact after receiving a pic of a rather tasty Vanguard from him, you never know when!

I'll be sure to post some pics of the LA on the pond in the non too distant future.

I'll also learn to count to 10 before posting next time!
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