3D Hobby Shop's 55" Extra 300 SHP
|Wing Area:||640 sq. in.|
|Weight:||4 lbs., 14 oz.|
|Wing Loading:||17.55 oz./sq. ft.|
|Servos:||(5) Hitec 225 MGs|
|Transmitter:||Hitec Optic 6|
|Battery:||MaxAmps 5s 4000 mAh HV|
|Motor:||Torque Revolution 4014T/570|
|ESC:||Airboss Elite 80A|
|Manufacturer:||3D Hobby Shop|
|Available From:||3D Hobby Shop|
I have to admit that when I heard that 3D Hobby Shop was coming out with a plane that would fly as good if not better than their already very successful and popular 47" Extra 300 SHP I had my doubts. The 47" Extra is such a great flyer that I thought there was no way that 3D Hobby Shop could improve on such a design. Boy was I wrong! I had momentarily forgotten who was going to be involved in the development and creation of the new 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP. 3D Hobby Shop's once again drawn upon the the experience and knowledge from one of the most prolific full-scale IAC Aerobatic pilots, authors, and accomplished RC pilots around. The 55" Extra 300 SHP is a design that that was developed in conjunction with Scott Stoops with one goal in mind: to build a mid-sized electric that would be capable of the highest possible level of aerobatic performance utilizing a lightweight, yet robust airframe and taking advantage of a new and innovative power system in an airplane that costs under $200.
Well the 55" Extra 300 SHP comes with some very impressive features: the fabulous "Stoops Wing", ball link and phenolic control hardware, a robust carbon fiber wing tube, a pre-installed canopy latch, and even airfoiled tail surfaces. This plane was billed to have some of the highest pitch rates on the market and to be capable of performing maneuvers that don’t have names yet, so to say I was excited to get started on this review would be an understatement!
My 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP ARF arrived in great condition. 3D Hobby Shop is the only manufacturer that I know of that ships each one of their airplanes tripled boxed to ensure the airplane arrives damage free. There was no fancy picture of the 55" Extra 300 SHP on the cover of the box, but that was fine because what comes in the box is all that matters. In the case of the 3D Hobby Shop Extra 300 SHP the contents do not disappoint.
I was immediately impressed by how well everything was packed and protected. Upon taking everything out of their individual plastic bags I was drawn to the fantastic looking covering scheme which was in near perfect condition. 3D Hobby Shop used red transparent covering on the bottom of the wings and tail surfaces which really shows off some the excellent engineering that went into making these airplanes.
The complete kit features:
Items used for the 55" Extra 300 SHP review model:
Scott Stoops has joined forces with Ben Fisher, owner of 3D Hobby Shop to bring the RC community some of the best flying airplanes that have ever hit the market. Scott is no stranger to flying as he was flying full-scale airplanes by the age of 16 and had picked up his commercial and certified flight instructor ratings by the age of 18. Scott is currently a Captain with a major airline flying Boeing 737-300 series airliners. Scott put his years of experience to great use this year when he literally saved hundreds of lives by avoiding what could have been a major catastrophe while at the controls of his Boeing 737 (scroll down to page 5).
Scott is also an active member of the International Aerobatic Club (IAC) and competes competitively with his full-scale Sukhoi Su-26MX in the advanced category. Scott has taken his vast knowledge of aviation and has incorporated it into a useful tool for RC pilots to learn from in his book Mastering Radio Controlled Flight.
Scott has been involved in many successful RC airplane designs including the Stevens Aeromodel Edge 540 and recently the 3D Hobby Shop 47" Extra 300 SHP. It is truly an honor to have such a distinguished person like Scott Stoops as an active member of RCG. Scott truly stands for everything that is good in aviation... an individual that seeks to make RC flight a more pleasurable and enjoyable experience for everybody
The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP assembly/flying manual is perhaps one of the most user friendly and detailed manuals that I have seen. The photo-illustrated text leaves little question as to how to assemble the Extra 300 SHP. The manual even includes such useful tips as to how to seal hinge lines, secure servo leads, and Scott's Tips on how to set up your Extra for both precision and 3D flying. The manual also includes a Basic 3D Guide that walks you through how to fly some 3D maneuvers with excerpts from Scott Stoops’ book, The Pilot's Guide to Mastering Radio Controlled Flight. Another nice feature that 3D Hobby Shop has incorporated is making their manuals available via pdf format. This allows customers the chance to look over the manual before they purchase/receive their kits. Nice feature indeed!!
3D Hobby Shop, in conjunction with Scott Stoops, has designed a wing that is much thinner than the typical thick "fun foils" that we have seen in recent years and has developed an airfoil that has a very sharp leading edge. The "Stoops Wing" allows the 55" Extra 300 SHP to transition the stall much more cleanly than a thicker airfoil. The Extra 300 SHP's airfoil also allows for a more stable flying airplane at high angles of attack (AOA) minimizing, and in most cases eliminating, wing rock. The thinner airfoil also allows the Extra to penetrate the wind much more easily and allows the airplane to maintain a more constant speed when flying precision maneuvers. I believe every pilot could benefit from flying an airplane that has such excellent flight characteristics built right into it.
The 3D Hobby Shop Extra 300 SHP comes with some very top notch hardware that you normally do not see in an ARF airplane of this size. The Extra 300 SHP uses 4-40 sized ball link connectors and extremely lightweight and strong phenolic controls horns. The aileron connectors are very easy to setup and to adjust after they are installed. For the servo control arms I used some spare long arms from a few of my HS-5645 servos. The Dubro #672 arms are also great servo arms to achieve full 3D throws. Both wings ride on a carbon fiber wing tube, and each are held in place by a thumb screw and hardwood anti-rotation pin. The wing tube fits VERY snugly inside the wings and phenolic inside the airplane. However, I am glad it does as I'm pretty sure that a loose fitting wing tube would not last very long in a plane that is able to produce the serious G's that the 3D Hobby Shop Extra is capable of.
The time it took me to hinge and setup the aileron servos was approximately 20 minutes for both wings.
Advantages of Duel Elevator Servos:
The first thing that I noticed when I started working on the elevator and stab was how little horizontal stab there is and how HUGE the elevator halves are. The stab was very easy to install and glued into place before working on the elevator halves. The 55" Extra 300 SHP uses two servos, one per elevator half. My initial thoughts were that this might be overkill on an airplane that will be less than 5 lbs. RTF. However, after many flights on my 55" Extra SHP I can tell you that two servos on the elevator works out just great. The total time to setup the elevator and stab was 40 minutes.
The rudder setup on the Extra was as straightforward and easy to setup as the rest of the control surfaces. The included ball-link connectors and rudder phenolic went together nicely, and the rudder tray was a custom fit for my HS-225MG servo. The rudder tray is well built with plenty of support and is ready for even the most aggressive maneuvers a pilot could think of. The HS-225MG provides plenty of torque, and I have not seen any issues with blow back while flying the Extra. Terrific setup!! The time needed to install the rudder and pull-pull setup was approximately 30 minutes.
|Powered by MaxAmps|
MaxAmps 5s 4000mAh HV
|Size:||44mm x 137mm x 32mm|
|Constant Amps:||20C (80A)|
|Sustained Amps:||30C (120A)|
|Burst Amps:||50C (200A)|
Every time I have an opportunity to build a 3D Hobby Shop airplane I am always amazed at how light the framework is but how tough these airplanes can be. It is very rare to find a merging point between these two qualities, but somehow 3D Hobby Shop has done it once again with their 55" Extra 300 SHP.
The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP comes with a terrific set of pre-painted scale metal landing gear. Don't be fooled by just the great looks of the landing gear as they are also extremely functional and do a great job of absorbing much of the force on those not so perfect landings. I have harrier landed the Extra many times, and the gear has held up fantastic every time. I know Ben is working on producing some carbon fiber landing gear for the 55" Extra 300 SHP as well that should be available soon!!
The time needed to complete the above steps was 10 minutes.
|Size:||Replacement for .40-.70 sized glow engines|
|Rec. Prop Range (sea level):||(4s) 15x8-16x8||(5s) 14x7-15x6|
|Voltage:||18.5V to 28.8V|
|Idle Current (Io):||2.70A @ 10V|
|Shaft Diameter:||6mm (.24 in)|
|Weight:||280g (13.0 oz)|
|Maximum Burst Current:||80A (20 sec)|
The new Torque Revolution motor and Airboss Elite 80 speed controller are a custom fit for the 55" Extra 300 SHP. The Torque motor fits the motor box perfectly, and the included hardware made mounting the motor quick and painless. The Extra 300 SHP has an extremely strong motor box and I was very impressed with the fact that it came pre-attached to the firewall. No motor box to build and glue to the firewall. This is a real time saver that 3D Hobby Shop incorporates into all their ARF airplanes.
The Torque Revolution is a very impressive motor. I have pushed this motor very hard in various weathers, and I am constantly amazed that the motor will come down just above ambient temperature. The Airboss Elite 80A speed controller has a switching BEC unit that allows from 2s-5s packs to be flown without using a separate receiver pack or UBEC setup. This truly makes the Torque Revolution and the Airboss Elite 80A a plug-n-play combo and an excellent choice for the 55" Extra 300 SHP.
I decided to use some MaxAmps 5s 4000mah HV battery packs to power my Extra 300 SHP. I find that not only are MaxAmps packs a great value for your money but they can deliver some series power as well. Another great choice for powering the Extra 300 SHP would be the new 3D Hobby Shop5s 3400 mAh 20C LiPo packs. The 5s brick pack, and the 5s long pack will both fit onto the battery tray of the Extra. Just like the MaxAmps packs these are great packs for the price. Whichever pack you decide to go with be sure to secure your battery pack with a minimum of 2 velcro seatbelts (3 is best). The Extra 300 SHP is capable of some very wicked maneuvers, and the battery pack can get subjected to some series G's.
There was a terrific article written about the Torque Revolution and Airboss Elite 80A speed controller that has some additional information and details that can be found here. The time needed to complete this step of the build was 35 mins.
|All tests were performed using the 5s 4000mAh HV MaxAmps packs|
|APC 14 x 7E|
|APC 15 x 6E|
|APC 15 x 7E|
|Xoar 14 x 7|
|Xoar 15 x 8|
I was completely ecstatic about how my finished 3D Hobby Shop Extra 300 SHP looked when I was done. Not only was I excited about how well it looked, I was equally excited when I put the Extra on the scale for the weigh in. My Extra 300 SHP came in at 4 lbs. 14 oz. RTF!! For the first few flights I set my CG at the recommended 4.5" (also used for precision flight) but have since moved it back to 4 3/4" which to me seems to provide a good CG for combined 3D and precision flying.
Oh, by the way it took me approximately 2 hours and 15 mins. to build the 55" Extra 300 SHP up to the point it was ready to be balanced and the control throws to be set. Not bad!!
Control throw setup
|Control throws were set per the instruction manual:|
|Low Rates Up||Low Rates Down||High Rates Up||High Rates Down|
|Elevator||15 degrees||15 degrees||55 degrees||55 degrees|
|Aileron||17 degrees||17 degrees||30 degrees||30 degrees|
|Low Rates Left||Low Rates Right||High Rates Left||High Rates Right|
|Rudder||max. throws||max. throws||max. throws||max. throws|
One of the nice things about the 55" Extra 300 SHP is its size. When you take this plane to a flying club it is of comparable size to most 40 sized glow airplanes, so it is usually a nice surprise when people are expecting you to throw the prop to start it and all you have to do is turn the on/off switch to on and you’re ready to go. This airplane gets all the attention where ever it goes.
The 55" Extra 300 SHP's steerable tailwheel makes ground taxing extremely easy, and I find that there are no signs of the plane nosing over even in the roughest of grass fields. The Extra 300 SHP is capable of performing nice scale takeoffs and takeoffs that result in your bottom jaw (and everyone else that's around you) hitting the ground. The Extra requires little to no rudder to maintain a nice straight track during the takeoff roll. With full throttle takeoffs the Extra breaks ground after what appears to be only a few feet of roll out. Once airborne and while using low rates the Extra tracks tremendously well and feels very solid even in moderate wind conditions. I found that with my battery pack 1" in front of the wing tube that the Extra required just a slight amount of down elevator to maintain inverted flight. With the battery pack moved all the way to the back of the battery tray the 55" Extra flies hands off while inverted. The recommended low rates are a great place at which to fly the Extra 300 SHP through precision/pattern style of maneuvers.
Landing the 55" Extra 300 SHP is really a non- event. You merely have to keep a few clicks of throttle in during the final approach sequence and as the airplane begins to flare a few feet off the ground gradually close the throttle and you will be rewarded with a nice 3-point landing every time. One of the biggest things I see at our local club is pilots who close the throttle too early during their landing approaches. This usually results in the airplane plopping in for a less than ideal landing. The Extra's landing gear is also strong enough to allow for harrier landings without the fear of the gear folding or departing the airplane.
Have you ever wanted an airplane that could do full throttle blenders? How about an airplane that can perform maneuvers that don't even have names yet? Well that is exactly what the 55" Extra 300 SHP is capable of when you flip over to high rates. The Extra 300 SHP is by far one of the most 3D capable airplanes I have ever flown. With the duel elevator servos in the tail and the large elevator surfaces the Extra 300 SHP has an outrageous amount of pitch authority. This allows the 55" Extra to perform such maneuvers as waterfalls, cobras, and tic-tocs with ease. The Extra 300 SHP exhibits little to no wing rock both upright and inverted and can be flown around the field using just rudder for guidance in harrier flight. Knife edge flight displayed very little coupling, no need for any mixing in the radio. The Extra is a great tumbling airplane and really excels at lomcevaks, blenders, and knife edge spins. This is becoming one of my favorite planes to hover down low and then just go full throttle and watch as the plane ACCELERATES vertically until it is a speck in the sky.
While the Extra is extremely responsive on high rates it does not become too pitch sensitive or uncontrollable at any point in time. It is an airplane that can build your confidence up very quickly as it exhibits no bad habits and will not snap out on you during even the most aggressive use of the elevator controls.
Below I have included a 3D report card which includes some of the maneuvers I have flown with the 55" Extra 300 SHP and how I rated each of them:
|The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP Report Card|
|High Alpha Rollers||A+||Very easy to do with a neutral to aft CG|
|Blenders||A+||FULL THROTTLE!! Fantastic!!|
|High Alpha Upright||A||Very little if any wing rock. Take these down low!!|
|High Alpha Inverted||A+||Rock Solid!!|
|Knife Edge||A||Almost zero coupling.|
|Hovering||A||The Extra 300 SHP locks in so easily.|
|High Speed Snaps||A||Lightening quick on high rates.|
|Walls||A+||WOW! No signs of snapping out. Inverted walls are fun as well!!|
|The Cobra||A+||Not many airplanes can fly these, but the Extra flies them beautifully!!|
|Knife-Edge-to-Knife-Edge Turns||A||Plenty of rudder throw to actually fly these on low rates.|
|Knife Edge Spins||A||Very easy to enter with this airplane.|
|Inverted Flat Spin||A||Flatter than my mothers pancakes.|
|Knife Edge Loops||A+||Tracks extremely well through the whole loop with just rudder and throttle.|
|The C.H. (Chris Hinson) a.k.a. The Aneurism||A+||SWEET!! The Extra loves to fly these!!|
The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP is NOT a beginners airplane as it does not posses the self-leveling qualities that most trainers such as the 3D Hobby Shop EBT Trainer have. The 55" Extra 300 SHP would make for a terrific intermediate to advance airplane for anyone who is looking to advance there 3D/precision skills.
The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP is by far one of the BEST 40 sized electrics that I have ever flown. It is capable of performing maneuvers that at times even get me to think, "How'd I do that"? The Extra 300 SHP is able to withstand G forces that would have rekitted other similar sized airplanes and comes begging for more. The Extra comes with some of the best quality hardware I have seen in an airplane of this size. The fact that the builder has to do zero modifications to the airplane to get it to fly as advertised is very impressive and a true testament to the dedication and commitment shown by the manufacture.
The 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP will by far and away set the standard by which all other 40 sized electric airplanes are measured. I look forward to seeing what the future will bring in electric flight as 3D Hobby Shop has set the bar quite high with their 55" Extra 300 SHP. It has quickly become one of my favorite planes to take to the field. If you would like to check out what others think of the 3D Hobby Shop 55" Extra 300 SHP there is a growing thread that has been started right here on RCG's that can be found here . Check it out!!
|Oct 07, 2007, 10:15 PM|
Great review Tim!!
I've got to say, with all the great birds from 3DH, it's honestly been a while since I've bought anything from any other manufacturer. The 55" SHP has brought this size of plane to an entirely new level. Not only does this plane look good, but it's flight characteristics are absolutely incredible. This plane is by far one of the best flying planes I've ever seen. This plane combined with the suggested Torque motor on 5S is a setup that will leave you smiling every time you put it in the air.
|Oct 08, 2007, 02:00 AM|
Great review and great airplane. Congrats everyone.
I second CatchmyCorsair's question about the 'cobra' and the 'aneurism'- they sound insane
|Oct 08, 2007, 08:48 AM|
Thanks for the positive feedback guys!!
As to flying the Cobra and the heartattack both of these maneuvers are featured in the 3D video posted in the review.
This is just a variation of the wall maneuver in which you rotate well beyond vertical (somewhere around 135 degrees of pitch). In order to fly the Cobra you need a plane that has lots of pitch authority (ala 55" Extra 300 SHP).
This is how I fly the Cobra:
1. Apply full throttle flying a straight line.
2. Quickly close the throttle and apply full up elevator.
3. Allow the plane to pitch well beyond 90 degrees .
4. Exit in either an inverted harrier or apply throttle and full down elevator to pitch the airplane back forward.
This can be seen at 2:28 in the 3D video.
The Aneurism is basically a maneuver that is flown at full throttle in a straight line and then crossing the sticks (left stick down and right and right stick up and left). Basically it is a full speed horizontal blender.
This maneuver can be seen at 1:41 in the 3D video (inverted).
Hope this helps out some.
|Oct 08, 2007, 09:00 AM|
Thanks Bill!! I am always trying to find new and creative ways to setup my reviews. I appreciate your feedback.
|Oct 08, 2007, 09:48 AM|
The second maneuver you have listed is called the heartattack.
Aneurysm is full throttle straight line and then crossing the sticks (left stick down and right and right stick up and left). Basically a full speed horizontal blender.
|Oct 08, 2007, 10:49 AM|
|Oct 08, 2007, 03:13 PM|
I was trying to teach a guy to do these (blenders) yesterday with his Wild Hare Edge, I thought one time he was going to tear the wings off the thing - left the roll in far to long... On high rates though that plane is a tumbler too...
What is the one called when you pull like a cobra, then let the plane drift up a little and then push the stick over and come out going the other direction but inverted? Gary Wright does it with his E3D's all the time. I'm thinking this plane would do that with ease!?
|Oct 08, 2007, 03:20 PM|
Has anyone tested the 3DHS 5s Lipos? They definitely look to be the best deal but with all the puffing of cheap packs lately I'm very wary. I've heard mixed results on MaxAmps. I was looking at a 2s 6000mah 20C pack for a car application and some independent testing showed it hitting 140F at only 11.5C (70A) continuous.
I'm re-reading the review. Very well done! Thanks.
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