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Posted by bzzboy | Feb 16, 2021 @ 01:14 PM | 9,515 Views
i finally got the bug to build the Goblin 770 i bought last May. Since this was my third SAB kit everything went pretty much to plan except for the $190 MKS servo i bought that didn't have any threads in the spline! Pretty poor response from MKS customer service, but A-Main took care of me. Aside from that it was another fun build that i documented in a slideshow. If anybody's interested you can watch it on YouTube.

Goblin 770 Build Jan 2021 (15 min 24 sec)

Great flying heli with a real presence. i put Rail 766 blades on it after 30 flights and it flies even better. Nice linear feel, they track great in forward flight, stable in hover but quickly flips the machine when you want to. Much smoother doing single-rotation piro-flips than the SAB 750s it came with.

Maiden flight was 2/9/21.

i started working on my Phoenix 1/4 Scale WACO again after letting it sit in the garage all summer with the wings and N-Struts clamped in place to help take the warps out of the wings. When i first got it i had tried to get the N-Struts to fit but the wings were warped enough i had resigned myself to having to drill them out and live with the twist. Hoping to remove the twist i put as much tension on them as i thought i dared and clamped the struts in place. i got busy with Heli again and it ended up sitting for about 8 months including the full summer. i started messing with the WACO again after the 770 was done and was pleasantly surprised that i was able to...Continue Reading
Posted by bzzboy | Jan 02, 2021 @ 10:28 PM | 9,226 Views
Continued my progression to the larger helis. To get there i put 630 documented flights on my T-Rex 550s in 2020.

I started flying my 700s more starting in August with the addition of my first Goblin, a Black Thunder 700. i initially outfitted it with all Align running gear, but switched out the motor for a Leopard LC700 460kV for use on 10 cells. With the lighter weight and lower head speed the Goblin is a blast to fly. Whisper quiet at 1400 HS and plenty of collective authority. A ~$100 set of 10s 4000 batts gives me 7:30 and the motor stays pretty cool. Flying weight is 10 pounds 12 ounces with the lighter LC700 and HRB 50c 10s 4000 batts. Maiden flight was 8/26/20

Next up was building the SAB Urukay F3C heli. i love how this heli flies large precision maneuvers and rolls better than any heli i've ever owned. The Xnova 4530 525kV has plenty of power, but i may switch it out for a 480kV wind to bring the head speed down some more. Right now my hover is around 1300rpm with the ESC Gov at min-low before it won't turn on. For F3C style hover i feel the rpm needs to come down at least another 100rpm or more. Maiden flight was 9/20/20.

After getting the Urukay off the bench i finished up Dr. Evil II. Bigger ESC, cleaner airframe, lighter servos, and much better cooling. (2 fans for the 130A ESC.) Had trouble with the motor until i figured out the ESC was shutting down due to current draw >130A. Oops... Had to go to fewer cells to keep it happy. Maiden...Continue Reading
Posted by bzzboy | Jun 15, 2020 @ 12:10 AM | 7,982 Views
Finished my 85" Extreme Flight E300. Installed the recommended XPower 40cc motor and a Hobby Wing 130A ESC. Swings a Falcon 22x10 nicely on 12s. MKS HV747 on ail/elev and HV1220 on the rudder. Best flying model i've ever owned. Smooth as silk and knife-edge is a dream. Couldn't be happier! 8+ minutes of Basic/Sportsman aerobatics.

Maiden flight was 2/3/20.

Got a backup T-Rex 550 flying that i bought here on RC Groups. Went through it and have been flying it a lot.

Maiden flight was 3/1/20.

Dr. Evil fell victim to an unfortunate smelting accident. Too much prop burnt down the motor and took the ESC with it. i found molten solder blobs inside the airframe when i gutted it! Good thing i had independent and redundant power sources for the Rx.

R.I.P. 3/10/20

Got my Assassin finished. Used this as a test bed for several new things like using polyurethane glue to skin the ailerons, sanding the foam and applying the Ultracote directly to it, building my own aluminum control horns, covering a compound object with a single piece of Ultracote, and using 1.5 mil aluminum tape to the vertical fins. i also built my own motor mount to save weight and installed all the components internally to clean up the airframe. Put WAY too much time and effort in it, but used it as a learning opportunity. Flys really nice.

Maiden flight 5/5/20.

Been flying lots of heli since the days got longer. Got them all together for a family photo....Continue Reading
Posted by bzzboy | Feb 04, 2020 @ 07:54 PM | 14,982 Views
After a half-hearted attempt to find a mid-size pattern plane as a compliment to the Vanquish, i ordered a Extreme Flight 60" Extra from NorthWest RC. i opted for Hitec 5087MH servos since i don't plan to do 3D. i took the ESC out of the Outlaw, and 4 days later it's ready to fly. What an easy build. Best flying 60" class plane i've ever flown. Even with the modest servos it will do knife-edge loops with ease.

Maiden flight was 10/27/2019.

i found a good deal on a TRex 550X on Black Friday which i couldn't pass up. The kit arrived on Friday night, and i flew it the following Monday. This thing's a beast. My 700X definitely has punch, but this thing feels even more powerful. i freaked myself out a couple of times doing stuff i normally do with my 500X. Very happy with the layout and the performance.

Maiden flight was 12/9/2019.
Posted by bzzboy | Feb 04, 2020 @ 06:41 PM | 14,465 Views
A guy had speed plane out at the field so i got a wild hair and picked up an Extreme Flight Outlaw from NorthWest RC. The advertise 150mph with their setup and it's the truth! Fastest thing i'd had ahold of since flying Standard Class Quickie 500 when i was in college in the early-mid 90s.

As they warn you, the 9x9E prop eats a lot of current, and the ESC was going into thermal shutdown on me. It's still really quick with the 9x7E.

Maiden was sometime in August. i was so busy with heli stuff i don't remember when.
Posted by bzzboy | Feb 04, 2020 @ 06:28 PM | 14,416 Views
In between all the other stuff, i've been flying the blades off my 500Xs getting practiced up to take full advantage of the Align Flight Academy School being held at the 2019 Snohomish Heli Funfly. It was being taught by Alan Szabo Jr., Ben Storich, Nick Maxwell, and Gale "Align", the team leader.

Pretty much the entire month of August was dedicated to getting all the support gear ironed out, getting all 3 500Xs set up to the best of my ability, and getting my thumbs in shape.

The weather was marginal during the class, but it all worked out and it was a great confidence builder and helped me identify some key concepts going forward. i can't believe i didn't get any pictures. i guess it's like when Elvis is flying by in his UFO and you just stand there staring, not thinking to snap a picture. Oh well. There's some videos on YouTube from the event if you're curious.

They had 86 registered pilots, and porta-lights to fly under on Fri/Sat night. That was the first time i'd ever done night flying without a lit heli. What a trip!
Posted by bzzboy | Feb 04, 2020 @ 05:26 PM | 13,119 Views
i don't know about you, but for us occasional composite assemblers, this is not fun. Taking a knife to the modeling equivalent of da Vinic's David fills me with dread with every stroke of the blade. Oh well, if you want to make an omelet...

This is my 3m Aloha F5J i started finishing after completing the FireStorm. i got to see one fly that was built by one of the PASS members and loved the concept. It's like a 2x electric launch version of my StratAir Chile DLGs. Super light but super clean to get back upwind after chasing that bubble for everything it was worth. (Or as far as you can see the sailplane, more like). He built his heavy for his windy day machine, i built mine light since i figure i can always ballast it with a bigger battery.

Motor selection was a lengthy process, and after running all the numbers/weight-balance scenarios, i settled on a Leopard 2830 1290kV on a 3s850 turning a Graupner 9x6 on a BB 32mm spinner. (Spinner/prop was from Aloft Hobbies) i knew i was asking a lot form that little motor, so i used my Little Toni as a mule for the power system. i ballasted it up to 32 oz. on a windy day and did several consecutive simulated sailplane launches which it handled just fine. Climb-out was 45+ degrees and the motor was acceptably warm on a summer day. Success! MKS 75k servos were used for all functions.

It came out with a finished weight of 27.5oz. w/o wing/stab retention tape. That works out to just under 5.1 oz/sq ft. Not bad...Continue Reading
Posted by bzzboy | Jan 24, 2020 @ 11:22 PM | 11,087 Views
i spent the month of May flying the crap out of my T-Rex 500X and my FireStorm. i started thinking about a larger F3A model and started doing some research. i made the mistake of calling Coyote Hobbies and Russ said he had a 2m Vanquish on consignment that only needed a speed control. Well, the next day it was on my bench getting the Talon 120 from my Raven installed in it.

This is the most honest plane i've ever owned. The Himaxx swings a 21x14 V2 Falcon prop.

i made some of my best landings ever with this plane. That's a good thing since the gear plate material is notoriously weak as was told to me by another Vanquish owner that just happened to start coming to our field the week before i bought it. (the front/back edges of the gear rocking back and forth cuts the material) so i laid in a 1.5mm carbon plate to help spread out the load of the landing gear.

i'm running a SmartFly Batt Share which pulls from a 2s LiFe pack as primary, and fails back to the Talon 120 BEC if the battery goes flat. Telemetry will warn me if a switchover occurs.

Re-Maiden was 6/18/19
Posted by bzzboy | Jan 24, 2020 @ 11:04 PM | 11,202 Views
i got the bug for a small pattern plane and ran across the FMS F3A Explorer. It was OK, but a little too high of wing loading for what i wanted. i liked the concept however, and found Mountain Models FireStorm.

It took about 2 months to complete in between other projects. What a FANTASTIC flying machine. I lightened up the structure where i could and covered it with some SoLite from my stash. Having used them in my DLGs, i put MKS 75k servos in it, along with a Leopard 3536 running on 3s 2200s. 7 minutes of F3A flying and wing loading is under 11oz/sq ft! Static thrust to weight ratio is >2:1. What a FANTASTIC flying model. It flies much bigger than its size. It slow rolls beautifully, and lands like a feather. It also tolerates wind much better than i anticipated, which is good because our field in the summer has a nearly constant stiff breeze in the evening.

Pictures at the field were on the Maiden Day, and i had left the cowl off prior to settling on the incidence for the motor. i'll have to make some time to finish trimming it, it's definitely a keeper.

Maiden flight was 4/23/19
Posted by bzzboy | Nov 21, 2019 @ 12:24 AM | 8,201 Views
Pulled out my T-Rex 450s from 11 years ago in January and it gave me the bug. In fact, it made me realize i need to get my butt in gear to accomplish my bucket list item of being a decent heli pilot. All my batts were in bad shape and the little buggers are hard see now that i'm older, so i started looking at the T-Rex 500 which i really liked back when i was flying my 450s a lot. Great balance of size and crash affordability.

So, one week of evenings after receiving it from Tammies Hobbies it was ready to go. Maiden flight was 2/19/19. Flies superb! This fly-bar-less stuff is kinda cool.

Pictures at the field were taken 2 days before my first test hop which was in the back yard.
Posted by bzzboy | Nov 13, 2019 @ 01:41 AM | 8,717 Views
Almost forgot I finished this while getting the Raven together.

I was off work for a week with a cold, so I decided to get this electric Little Toni from the Wings Maker going. Tossed the stock motor and put in a Leopard 2835 1350kV on 3 cells.

The wing was terribly warped, but I took my heat gun to the field and got it all trimmed out. Maiden flight was 1/20/19 or thereabouts.
Posted by bzzboy | Nov 07, 2019 @ 12:06 AM | 8,505 Views
After the Kanary, i decided to jump into larger scale electric power. Found the 1/4 Raven (semi-scale) at General Hobby. Used a HK SK3 6364 for power on 10 cells. Spins a 19x10 at ~7400 at the beginning of the pack. Had to make a custom stand-off for the motor, so i used piece of cedar laying around to accomplish the task. Thank goodness for power tools...

Maiden flight was Jan 29, 2019. Great vertical and hands-off inverted.
Posted by bzzboy | Nov 04, 2019 @ 07:06 PM | 8,428 Views
The Tiger is covered in Metal Flake Red Black Baron film from my stash. I put an OS Gas Glow .60 in it for power, and JR DS390 servos commanded by a Futaba 7008SB. Flies better than I remember. This was the first plane I ever did a low inverted pass down the field with, (technically it was a Jr. Tiger in 1989) and it brought back a lot of great memories. On a 6 oz. tank, Iíve putted around for 42 min for a personal best for glow powered flight. The GG10 sips fuel, but only makes the power of a modern methanol/nitro .46. Itís plenty of power for what the Tiger was designed for, however.

The Hot Kanary is covered in Park Lite and has a E-Flite Power 32 in the nose. It really looks clean as an electric. I modified it for 4 ailerons and the entire top of the nose comes off for batt access. The only plastic it has is for the wheel pants. Everything else is carved balsa that was covered or painted. i started this kit in 2008 and lost/gained interest until it was finally finished in Dec. 2018!

It has Hitec minis all the way around. (Canít recall precisely which model this second- I guess Iím getting old...). It tumbles and does some wild gyrations with the sticks in the corner!
Posted by bzzboy | Nov 02, 2019 @ 03:21 PM | 9,625 Views
An original Sky Tiger and a Hot Kanary from 80s kits.

First flight for the Tiger was Sept. 18, 2018.

First flight for the Kanary was Jan. 2, 2019.