|Wing Area:||264 sq|
|AUW weight:||Advertised 27 oz., Actual - 27 oz|
|Wing loading:||10.9 oz/sq. ft.|
|Servos:||5 Hitec HS-65 (Metal Gear on retracts)|
|Battery:||Thunder Power 2100 & 2200mAh 3s LiPoly|
|Motor:||KM0283010 Supplied with kit|
|ESC:||Scorpion 30 amp ESC with Switching BEC|
|Available From:||AirBorne Models|
When I saw that World Models was releasing a semi-scale electric powered Zero with a motor and retracts already installed, I was excited to say the least. Being a Warbird fan and never having owned a Zero this was exactly what I was looking for to fly at my local electric club and even to take to a Warbird event.
When I received the kit and peeked inside I was pleased with what I saw. The hassle of installing the retracts and its linkages had already been done. The covering includes detailing to help with the standoff semi-scale looks.
Entering service in 1940, the A6M became known as the Zero based on its official designation of Type 0 Carrier Fighter. In early 1940, the first A6M2, Model 11 Zeros arrived in China and quickly proved themselves as the best fighter in the conflict. Fitted with a 950 hp Nakajima Sakae 12 engine, the Zero swept Chinese opposition from the skies. With the new engine, the aircraft exceeded its design specifications and a new version with folding wingtips, the A6M2, Model 21, was pushed into production for carrier use.
For much of World War II, the Model 21 was the version of the Zero that was encountered by Allied aviators. A superior dogfighter than the early Allied fighters, the Zero was able to outmaneuver its opposition. To combat this, Allied pilots developed specific tactics for dealing with the aircraft. These included the "Thach Weave," which required two Allied pilots working in tandem, and the "Boom-and-Zoom," which saw Allied pilots fighting on the dive or climb. In both cases, the Allies benefited from the Zero's complete lack of protection as a single burst of fire was generally enough to down the aircraft.
This contrasted with Allied fighters, such as the P-40 Warhawk and F4F Wildcat, which though less maneuverable, were extremely rugged and difficult to bring down. Nevertheless, the Zero was responsible for destroying at least 1,550 American aircraft between 1941 and 1945. Never substantially updated or replaced, the Zero remained the IJN's primary fighter throughout the war. With the arrival of new Allied fighters, such as the F6F Hellcat and F4U Corsair, the Zero was quickly eclipsed. Faced with superior opposition and a dwindling supply of trained pilots, the Zero saw its kill ratio drop from 1:1 to over 1:10. During the course of the war, over 11,000 A6M Zeros were produced.
Used for this review:
The Zero looks good right out of the box with its LighTex covering. You will notice the markings, panel lines and rivets are already done, adding to the semi-scale appearance. You can expect completion in about 8 - 10 hours.
Completed out of the box:
The builder needs to:
The included outrunner motor mounts behind the motor box with the included screws. The Zero comes with a folding prop, but I chose to use a Master Airscrew 8x6 3 blade propeller to get a more scale look. The 3 blade prop puts out between 152 - 169 watts and between 13.46 and 14.34 amps depending on the battery, which is within the recommended specifications for the motor.
WM KM0283010 Specs
|Number of cells:||Li-Po 3s|
|Max Constant Current:||15A|
|Max Burst (15 sec):||20A|
|Shaft diameter:||3 mm|
|Motor diameter:||28 mm|
Thankfully the horizontal and vertical stabilizer already has the covering removed at the points that require gluing which saves a lot of time. To get the horizontal stabilizer level, a light sanding was required in the opening in the fuselage. Once everything was confirmed to be straight and level, they were glued in place as well as the steerable tail wheel.
The radio installation is straightforward. Two servos mount in the fuselage for the rudder and elevator. The elevator has two pushrods that join into one at the servo. Three servos mount into the wing, two for aileron and one for the retracts. I mounted the speed control on the side of the motor cage to get good airflow and also to ensure I would get the CG where it needed to be. By using the Scorpion 30 amp ESC with Switching BEC I did not need to use a separate BEC or receiver battery. I used an AR6000 receiver mounted in front of the servos with Velcro. I used extensions for the retracts and a Y connector for the ailerons to make it easier to remove and attach the wing as removing the wing is required to access the battery.
Scorpion 6-cell 30 Amp ESC with Switching BEC Specs
|Type:||Brushless Speed Controller|
|Number of cells:||Li-Po 6|
|Max Cont. Amps:||30A|
|BEC:||4 Amps @ 5.7 V|
|Dimensions:||70 x 30 x 10 mm|
|Programming :||IR Programming Card|
Hitec HS-65 Specs
|Operating Speed||(4.8V): 0.14sec/60° (6.0V): 0.11sec/60°|
|Stall Torque (4.8V):||(4.8V): 25 oz/in. (6.0V): 31 oz/in.|
|Dimensions:||0.92" x 0.45"x 0.94"|
|Connector Wire Length:||11.81" (300 mm)|
|Gear Type:||Karbonite or Metal|
|Operating Voltage:||4.8-6.0 Volts|
The retracts are very easy to set up as most of the work is already done. The retracts are already installed, and the pushrods are already bent and waiting to be attached to the servo. I used an HS-65MG servo and had to put two small pieces of balsa under the sides of the servo where they screw down to keep the servo from bottoming out in the wing. The retract servo is connected to the pushrods with adjustable linkages.
A little detailing is required to complete the Zero. The pilot, lazyback, antenna and canopy must be installed. All but the canopy are glued, the canopy attaches with 4 screws. With the battery pushed all the way forward, my CG was right on the mark of 2.7 inches behind the leading edge of the wing where the wing meets the fuselage. The RTF weight was exactly 27 ounces with the TP 2100 pack and 27.9 ounces with the TP 2200.
Control throws are as follows: Elevator 10 mm each direction Rudder 15 mm each direction Ailerons 6 mm each direction I also used 20% expo all the way around.
Thunder Power Extreme V2 3S 2200mAh Specs
|Number of cells||3|
|Weigh t||170 grams|
|Dimensions (L x W x D)||25 x33 x107|
|Maximum continuous discharge||25C|
|Maximum continuous current||55 amps|
|Maximum burst discharge||50C|
|Maximum burst current||110 amps|
The first flight was off of a hard surface, and the takeoff roll was less than fifteen feet. I let a fellow pilot make the flight so that I could shoot video and pictures. The plane handled well, and the retracts, although a little too fast for scale, had a lot of appeal. The camera passes really showed off the semi-scale good looks of the Zero. The landing was done in about a 5 mph headwind and the Zero landed nicely with a little power on until touchdown.
When it was my turn at the sticks I noticed it took just a little rudder to keep her straight on the takeoff run. The power seemed just right for a warbird, enough for nice rolls from level flight but not crazy vertical performance. A touch of rudder with the ailerons would give a nice coordinated turn but is not required. Loops, rolls, hammerheads and inverted flight are all well within the Zero's ability.
The Zero can take off in less than 15 feet on a hard surface. If you don't want to mess with rudder just punch the throttle to full, and she will be off without rudder correction. Landing is a nonevent as long as you leave a little power on until touchdown. This allows more air to flow over the control surfaces and keeps the Zero from tip stalling.
Basic aerobatics (loops, rolls, hammerheads & inverted flight) are no problem for the Zero. It is not able to hold knife edge for long but if you want to knife edge you shouldn't be flying a semi-scale warbird! It has a very solid feel in the air as if you were flying a larger plane and was not at all affected in the light winds we were flying in. It is quite enjoyable to leave the gear down after takeoff until the first low flyby. Fast low passes ending in a victory roll look right at home for this warbird.
No. Warbirds as cool as they look are not a beginner planes. That being said, anyone that is comfortable with a low wing plane will have no trouble flying the Zero.
The World Models Zero is a good looking, easy to build, warbird that will put a smile on your face every time you hit the retract switch. World Models has packed a lot of scale appeal into a park flyer sized package.
|Jul 23, 2008, 06:33 PM|
Joined Sep 2004
Nice review and photos. One tip on the video though, might want to resist the temptation to zoom in so much. You'll get much more stable video if you use the eye viewfinder instead of the side screen on the camera.
|Jul 23, 2008, 06:37 PM|
Pictures taken with my new Canon XSI with 55-250mm IS lens
|Jul 23, 2008, 06:37 PM|
I have one of these. Your review makes me want to push everything out of the way and start mine. The plane looks great and seems like it flies nice in your video.
Thanks for the review.
|Jul 23, 2008, 11:20 PM|
Good review Jay. Looks like the EP version flies as well as their larger glow powered Zero. Seems like the stock motor is just about right for scale-like performance. Landing looked nice and steady all the way to touchdown.
|Jul 23, 2008, 11:40 PM|
I felt the motor was a little anemic. it might just have been my unit, but it actually siezed in flight (from over heating) and launched itself from the plane. This with 55 servos, a 25 amp ESC (E Flite) and a BEC. I felt the recommended battery size is too big and my little 1350 20Cs power the plane better (because of weight) then the big packs.
Overall I am happy with the plane. it looks great in the air and on the ground. Little tough to land, but not bad. I strapped in a T-28 Trojan motor which should power it very well.
|Jul 24, 2008, 07:39 AM|
Nice write-up. I have been looking at this model for a while but it was out of stock last month so I settled with a significantly less scale but extremely fun Venom Parkfighter Zero.
Is it me or are the panel lines, while nice, a bit over done?
Does the build really take 8-10 hours?
|Jul 24, 2008, 08:13 AM|
|Jul 24, 2008, 12:41 PM|
Are those retracts made by WorldModels for the plane? Or are they something I can order off the shelf somewhere?
|Jul 24, 2008, 12:46 PM|
If you go to there US website (www.airborne-models.com) you can by the retracts as a replacement part.
|Jul 24, 2008, 12:55 PM|
Absolutely. Really great photography there. It looks almost real!
|Jul 24, 2008, 01:18 PM|
I had considered buying the glow version of this plane. WM has pretty good stuff. Does anybody know if there's a hobby shop/website that sells World Models stuff in Canada?
|Jul 24, 2008, 04:56 PM|
Cool Plane - Great review
Now if they would just make a P-40 to go with the Zero & Corsair.
I really like WM stuff - got to try a warbird from them
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