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Posted by aeronaught | Mar 15, 2012 @ 09:00 AM | 49,522 Views
Finally got my maiden in yesterday. Conditions were perfect. Just a slight breeze. I flew her stock with a Turnigy 1300 3S 40C LiPo. With this battery all the way forward in the tray she's spot on CG. She took right off in a few feet. And tracked straight as an arrow. No bad tendencies or silliness to contend with. She does fly a lot like my PZ T-28D but with a little less power. I also tested her with a Turnigy 850mah 3S 40C nano-tech LiPo. I set the battery more towards the rear which was a bad idea. She went tail heavy and was quite a challenge to land. So what I've found is that if I shove those batteries as far up front as I can she flys just super. I found an extra "clevis/rod lock" from a pushrod set I had to use on the elevator pushrod being that my kit didn't come with one. I didn't get a Velcro strap either. So I'll be contacting Great Planes about that. All in all it was a great experience! I love the way she handles. And I brought her home the same way took her to the field. In one piece. THAT"S always a good thing. After I have a few flights on her I'll be looking for speed. Not a rocket but at least as fast if not faster than my PZ T-28D. I'll be perusing this thread to see what you guys are doing. And frankly I can't understand why this thread isn't larger. For the price and what you get this plane is a bargain! And she flys SO nice!!

So for now I'll leave her stock and enjoy having something to fly. But I'm chomping at the bit to soup this puppy up and get some speed out of her!!

Posted by aeronaught | Mar 14, 2012 @ 08:19 AM | 49,168 Views
A lot has happened since I've las written in my blog. I had a few good flights with my Rare Bear until I yard darted it into the ground and into an irreparable state. My HF P-51 was doing quite well also and anded up in the junkpile. My PZ T-28 is still hanging in there doing quite well. I love that plane!! No matter what I do to her she gets right back up, brushes herself off and keeps on flying. Next to my MSC she's one of the oldest in my fleet. Going on 3 or so years now. And of course my PZ UM T-28 and P-51's. They are such a hoot to fly!! But unfortunately they aren't much fun in a lot of wind. And I can fly my T-28 in a LOT of wind. During a recent visit to SC to see my Mom I couldnt help but notice the Great Planes Super Sportster RxR sitting on the shelf there. After my third tip to the HS for some trinkets I needed I walked out with that plane. I've been waiting for some calm weather to maiden her. I'm SO STOKED about this plane! I'm hoping she'll fly like I've seen and read.

It looks like spring has sprung here just west of Richmond. There's buds on the tree. Flowers are beginning to bloom or peek through the grass. The weather yesterday, windy but warm. Today is supposed to be in the 80's. The days are lasting longer. And it feels like you get more done in a day.

So right now I'm just waiting for that perfect moment to launch the Sportster. In the mean time there's hiking, and mountain biking to be enjoyed as well.


Posted by aeronaught | Dec 26, 2011 @ 01:24 PM | 50,423 Views
I took a chance last night and converted the stock ESC in my HF P-51 to use a 3S LiPo. I know I'm taking my chances of frying the ESC or motor and hosing a LiPo being that there's no LVC. The power and motor arming switches were also removed.

I took the plane out for a whirl today and she performed better than I expected. Going from a 600mah 8.4V NiMh to a 1300mah 11.1 volt LiPo along with a faster C rating perked her right up!! She hauls along at a pretty good clip now!! I timed my flight to 5 minutes to ensure I didn't run the battery down too far. When I put her back on the charger when I came home the voltage was still way above 9 volts. So I know I'm good for about 7+ minutes.

The plane was much more responsive and flew with much more authority. Rolls and loops were much better with that extra power.

My next move is to see how far I can push that battery to last without running it flat.

Posted by aeronaught | Dec 26, 2011 @ 01:08 PM | 50,014 Views
Well, it appears that I got this beauty pretty much figured out. It was my launch technique and elevator trim that took my joy. She torque rolls hard to the left when you launch her so you need to be prepared for that. She seems to climb out fine at 1/2 to 2/3rds throttle and launching her about a 45 degree angle also helps with getting her out a ways for you to get your hands back on the gimbles and take control. Originally I had the elevator adjusted incorrectly. I had to trim with my TX with elevator maxed full up. I managed to get the control rod adjusted by disconnecting it from the servo and giving the rod a few turns to give her up elevator. Now the elevator trim on my TX is neutral. Same goes with the ailerons. I'm flying with a DX5e. I don't have the resources to buy anything better right now. So I have no control over exponential. The plane is pretty twitchy when I use the ailerons but the elevator seems to be just fine. It's a matter of getting a feel for the plane and how she reacts to input.

This plane is amazing!! Now I know what all of the buzz is about!! This thing is SO fast it's INSANE!! I fly at a pretty good size sport facility and that feels like flying in a shoebox. I counted off about 3.5 seconds from end to end at WOT. It's exhilarating to fly something so fast!! My knees were knocking just like they used to when I first stared flying. I need to look into a prop saver. I went through two props belly landing this thing. And another shocker is how far...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Dec 18, 2011 @ 05:56 PM | 49,634 Views
Was a flop. She flew out about 10 -12 feet and did a nose plant into the ground. I broke off the right wing at the root and snapped a blade off of the prop. I thought my CG was dead on. After checking again it appears the the stock battery should be as far back in the compartment as possible. I had mine about mid-way to have her a wee bit nose heavy like I've read in some of the posts in the Rare Bear thread. Everything is back together and she looks as good as new accept that some of the decal/paint job was a tad messed up. No biggie because I plan to paint her bright yellow with black accents for better visibility. My plane that I ordered from Banana Hobby had no spare prop. I've discovered that finding a replacement prop is pretty difficult. I managed to locate some APC 5.5x4.5 E's at Tower Hobby. I ordered 6 of them. Better to be on the side of caution. I picked up some props at my LHS only to discover when I got home that they are pusher props. I went to Hobbytown USA today to see if I could find a couple of props to get her in the air while I'm waiting for my order. The closest they had were 6x5'E's. (not pusher... i made good and sure... ) I've been SO stoked about this plane!! I want some of that action!! I intend to just get her to fly decent and have her trimmed nice before I go all out with her. Once I get her flying decent and feel comfortable I'll try some WOT fun. If that goes well I'll move on to 4S. I was fortunate to get a decent ESC with a nice heat sink...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Dec 12, 2011 @ 12:46 PM | 49,840 Views
It took me long enough but Rare Bear is assembled and almost ready for maiden. I'm so excited about this plane. I've been so content flying my PZ UM T-28 and P-51 lately but this baby should really shake things up a bit. I'm looking forward to seeing what all of the excitement is about. The only thing holding me back right now is that I'm not too confident about the CG of this plane. I've used the marks that are molded into the wings and moved the battery(s) back and forth until I can get her to balance. The weird thing is that when I install a 1300 Mah battery the location for the CG to be correct is the same when I install an 850Mah. Weird huh? I would suppose that the 1300 would be a little aft of the 850. So I'm off to scour the Rare Bear threads and see what's what......

Posted by aeronaught | Nov 16, 2011 @ 01:10 PM | 50,003 Views
My Rare Bear arrived yesterday. I'm SO stoked about this plane!! I'll be doing the assembly today and if all goes well I'll do a maiden tomorrow or Friday. Depends on the weather. I'll be posting some pix and Hopefully a video of the maiden.

Posted by aeronaught | Nov 08, 2011 @ 09:34 AM | 49,836 Views
I ordered a Rarebear from Banana Hobby yesterday. I got the "RTF" version. It comes with a 850 Mah 3S LiPo and it will take up to 4S, I have a pair of Turnigy 1300mah 25C 3S LiPo's to try in it. I and SO psyched about this plane!! 80+ MPH out of the box. That's INSANE!!

I've had quite the love affair with my PZ UM T-28 for the past few months. The Rarebear should be amazing! I like the size of it. I rarely fly my full size T-28D because of it's size. These "pocket rockets" they're producing brings something very attractive to the hobby. Small, lightweight and FAST. I believe I can be content with a couple of UM's and a couple of these pocket rockets as my fleet. The other stuff could go. I love my full sized T-28D but she sits there collecting dust because it's just so convenient to grab my UM T-28 and just go fly. I envisage the same with the Rarebear and it's cousins.

I have quite a bit of gear just collecting dust. Quite a few NIB RTF "toys" sitting in the closet that I could get rid of to finance another pocket rocket. This will be my path. I'll be posting my dusty collection of NIB planes and go for another new pocket rocket. I'd love one of those new Sky Angel Sea Fury's or Sky Raiders.

I'll be posting another blog entry when Rarebear arrives. (Which should be sometime next week.)

Posted by aeronaught | Sep 30, 2011 @ 05:53 PM | 50,041 Views
I've been taking advantage of the good weather we've had the past three or four days to get some flying in. I've figured out one of my Mini Super Cub's malfunction which was a grimy gearbox and a motor that's beginning to go south on me. She does fly but she's as slow a molasses. Being my second MSC and going on ~3 years. A new motor is in order for this particular Cub. I'm thinking maybe an outrunner set-up for her. My girlfriend managed to pile drive her nose first into the ground from about 30 feet up at full tilt before I could get the TX from her. And believe it or not the plane survived with only a missing spinner!! Not a mark, crack or blemish!! Thank God the grass was a little high!!! My newer MSC is flying terrific with a GWS 8060 prop. A noticeable improvement with that set-up!! Nice loops, wing-overs and rudder-rolls!! I had my full sized Parkzone T-28D out for a few flights and just enjoyed all that power I'd forgotten about. How nice to do some loops, rolls, wing-overs, inverted and so on. Next to my UM she's my fave. The D is certainly a hoot to fly!! I'd like to get a camera for it. I had my Harbor Freight P-51 out. Right now she's back in stock form. After having no luck with the outrunner and LiPo conversion I put her back together with her original gear. The plane is a snail but still fun to fly. She will do just about all that I want from her but with little verve. I only have two stock 600mah NiMh packs so I don't get much time on that plane. I have to...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Feb 25, 2011 @ 08:03 PM | 61,239 Views
I've completed my Harbor Freight P-51 Brushless Outrunner and LiPo Conversion. I followed modlfy's current configuration. I purchased and used the following parts from Hobby King:

GWS EP Propeller (DD-1060 254x152mm) (6pcs/s

Hobbyking SS Series 25-30A ESC

Turnigy 1300mAh 3S 30C Lipo Pack

TowerPro Brushless Outrunner 2410-08T 890kv

I also added a steerable tail wheel using a HobbyZone Mini Super Cub tail wheel. (P/N: HBZ4817)

Turns out that as of right now I'm unable to use the props I ordered because of the size of the prop shaft. I tried using some electricians tape to enlarge the diameter of the shaft but it produces a vibration that kills the motor at WOT. So for now I'll be using the stock HF P-51 prop. I also have some GWS 8x6 props that I may try with it. I'd really like to get that 10 inch to work but it looks like I would need a prop adapter and that would mean doing without the spinner that comes with the plane. That spinner looks great on it and I'd hate to have to go without it. But if push comes to shove I'll buy an adapter with the small aluminum spinner on it or some other solution if I can find one.

While I was at it I decided to add a little detail by painting the exhausts and the machine guns with Testors flat black enamel. The tail wheel hub was painted silver with a Sharpie.

The tail wheel was affixed to the rudder by making a slit at the bottom with an Xacto knife and enlarging the hole with a bamboo skewer to allow me to stretch the hole enough...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Feb 24, 2011 @ 08:30 PM | 50,551 Views
My Estes HyperX 3 Channel conversion came to a screeching halt after one of our cats got a hold of one of my push rod tubes and destroyed it. So in the mean time I had to find something to keep me busy. I've had the Estes Turbo Thruster torn down and sitting in the closet awaiting a future three or four channel mod. So I whipped that out and went to town. The mod took about 5 evenings to complete. I chose to use the stock motor and and ESC from a Harbor Freight P-51 Mustang. The servos are Tower Pro SG-50's. I only needed two because this plane is aileron and elevator only. I opted to keep this three channel to keep weigh cost down as much as possible. I'm on a pretty tight budget nowadays. The receiver is a Hobby King 2.4GHz 6 channel DSM2. When I take a close look at it it has "AR6110 B" marked on it. (Hmmm.. Maybe Spektrum has something going with HK?) I had to do quite a bit of carving inside the fuselage to get all of the components to fit and allow access from inside the canopy to the receiver and battery. Before I tore the plane down I decided to try a HobbyZone Mini Super Cub 7.4V 300mah LiPo in it. That perked her right up!! But I never actually flew the plane. So I went with this as my power source. The stock transmitter and receiver were a typical Estes two speed setup. High speed and low speed plus bang- bang left and right with rocker type controls on the transmitter versus joysticks. But we ARE talking toy grade here. I tried the HyperX transmitter...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Feb 09, 2011 @ 07:27 PM | 50,053 Views
After maidening my Air Hogs Osprey I decided to tool around with my Bipe. My girlfriend caught this catch while filming the flight. Call it talent or just plain luck we were both impressed!


Air Hogs Bipe Nice Catch.AVI (0 min 19 sec)

Posted by aeronaught | Feb 09, 2011 @ 07:15 PM | 50,753 Views
Here's a video of my New air Hogs Osprey shot on 30 January 2011. If you look back in my blog you'll read that the first one I got was a dud. This one flys FANTASTIC!! Even with wind gusts of around 4-6 MPH she still handled quite well. The transition from hover to forward flight is amazing. The plane wasn't that easy for me to control in hover mode with the wind blowing but she did pretty well. If there's a breeze she'll be hard to bring down vertically. In calm weather the Osprey could be a perfect flyer! I'm VERY pleased with this purchase. For $39.99 (half off at TRU) I really I got my money's worth! Even with that 350 battery the flight time was far more than I expected for the size and weight of the plane. I didn't time it but I'm very sure I got more than 10 minutes out of it. The Air Hogs Osprey is now my Air Hogs fave! I've owned just about every plane that Air Hogs has had to offer except the Storm Launcher, Dominator, Switchblade, A-10, Thunder Strike, and the first couple electric offerings. (I'd love to get my hands on a Storm Launcher! That I've let slip through my fingers a few times but I will own one some day!) The Aero Ace Sport and Bipe have alway been my favorites. But the Osprey is IMHO the best offering yet. I really think you'd enjoy flying this plane!!


New Osprey Maiden (2 min 30 sec)

Posted by aeronaught | Feb 07, 2011 @ 12:23 PM | 49,975 Views
Here's my latest build. One of Oder Torsten's Dizzy series planes, The Dizzy Space. (You can find the plans on the aatoolbox website.) Very straight forward build. I got this one together in a couple of hours. The only difficult part was building up the pod. As in my last build this one uses three panels for the pod protecting and reinforcing the electronics area. This also strengthens the pod/fuse. I made the holes for the switch/charging socket and antenna coil using the same method I used in my last build. I really like the futuristic looks of the plane. The "canard" design is appealing to me. As well as the twin boom fuse. I'll be maidening this plane along with the Extra3x as soon as weather permits.

Next project is to finish the HyperX 3 channel conversion I started now that I've gotten most of the parts I need. Still waiting on some bullet connectors.. Ughh... It's the little things you overlook when shopping for your build. But I can get a lot done it's just a matter of connecting the motor to the ESC.

After the HyperX build comes a Harbor Freight P-51 conversion using an outrunner motor, LiPo and DSM2 RX. And of course a steerable tail wheel!

For me at this point minis and micros are starting to lose their luster. I've had a great time doing all of the projects I did the past couple of years. They've been a good source of pleasure and enjoyment. The reason I want to venture off is because flying these little gems depends SO much on the weather. Building larger (~30 + inch) planes will give me more opportunities to fly. You can't fly one of these micros in much wind. I can fly say, my ParkZone T-28D. in almost any weather. Having more power and full house electronics allows me to fly in a variety of conditions. And that's what I want. I just want to fly!! I'm getting very rusty... LOL.. You can look back in my blog and see where my last T-28 flight ended. I can't afford that so more stick time is much needed.


Posted by aeronaught | Feb 04, 2011 @ 11:00 PM | 49,571 Views
Here's my latest creation. The Extra3x. I started off to mod Sky Ryders AG-Super Talon rubber powered free flight plane that I got from my Dad's estate. When I pulled the plane out of the box it was nothing short of UGLY! I wasn't about to put my precious AA gear on that thing! But I wanted to build something. I looked at the plane for a while and saw some things about the airframe that I did like. The canopy and tail were the most offending looking parts of the fuse. So I took the fuse and traced it on some cardstock and worked the pattern of the fuse until it looked like something I could live with. I used the vertical stab that came with the kit and blended it into my drawing. I decided I could live with the horizontal stab that came with it and used that as a stencil. The Main wing didn't have much cord. So what I did was trace the leading edge and flipped the wing to make the trailing edge while adding more cord to the wing. With everything drawn up on my cardstock I made my patterns and cut out my parts using an Xacto knife. Then I marked the plane using Sharpies. I've discovered that using Krylon Workable Fixatif is useful for sealing the ink and preventing it from smudging while handling the plane. This technique has only been tried by myself on Cellfoam88. I tested the Fixatif on a piece of scrap foam with some Sharpie markings to see if it would mar or melt the foam or ruin the ink. Works great!! All you need is a light misting. You don't have to lay the...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Jan 18, 2011 @ 05:10 PM | 50,838 Views
Last March I intended to try modding my Gravity Hobby C-17E to three channel with a Mini Super Cub brick. That fell apart on me when I roasted the brick as well as determining that the brick wouldn't easily fit inside the plane. I'm currently working on an Estes HyperX 3 channel conversion. I thought that maybe I'd take the guts form the HyperX and put them in the C-17 just to button up the project and have something to maybe fly. The stock guts in the C-17 are a REAL letdown. The throttle has two speeds. On and off. Yeah.. That's it!! When I took the transmitter out of the box I noticed that the throttle stick was centered. It is sprung to center. I thought "OK... maybe up is fast and down is slow...." Wrong!!! Up is on. Center is off and down does nothing!! Bummer... So I set out to install the HyperX guts in the C-17. Just out of curiosity and on a whim I tried the HyperX transmitter with the C-17 receiver. And low and behold it worked!! The transmitter from The HyperX and the receiver from the C-17 behaved exactly as the HyperX TX/RX combination. Two speeds!! Not on and off, but pulse and high. Just as with the HyperX!! I can deal with that!! So I decided to button her up. With just one modification. The C-17 comes with a 160mah 4.8 volt NiMh. With a 3 minute flight duration per charge listed in the documentation I thought it would be nice to be able to swap batteries. In it's stock configuration the battery is encased in the fuselage. So I set out to make a...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Jan 13, 2011 @ 01:43 PM | 49,797 Views
My current project is an Estes HyperX 3 channel conversion. (I know... It's a dinosaur!! But I love this airframe!!) So far I've gotten the fuselage torn down and electronics and plastic sub-frame removed. I'm debating as to whether I should trim down and reinstall the plastic sub-frame. I believe that the airframe is pretty durable as it is. There are a couple of areas I will re-enforce in the cowl area. I'm using examples from fellow members billwhit and modfly. (Thanks for your contributions guys!!) I'm waiting for the items I've purchased for the build to arrive.

With the help of my good friend Slider2732 (Mark, I don't know what I'd do without you!) I've chosen the below to install:

18-11 2000kv Micro Brushless Outrunner (10g)

Hobbyking SS Series 8-10A ESC

Turnigy 500mAh 2S 20C Lipo Pack

GWS EP Propeller (DD-5030 127x76mm) (6pcs/se

DSM2 Compatible Parkflyer 2.4Ghz Receiver

Towerpro SG50 5g Micro Servo

I also have a DX5e and AR500 on the way. The AR500 will go to another project.

Silly me forgot to get a CG on the plane before I went to town but luckily I found it in a thread about the plane. Quoted by norm613 : "-my stocker w battery balances at 39mm from leading edge, or about 0r 1 and 9/16 inch from leading edge-balanced at just after the bend in the wing (flatter part as close to the fuse as I could get)." Thanks norm!! That was a life saver!!

For now I'm kind of in a holding pattern awaiting for the electronics to arrive. So I'm...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Jan 13, 2011 @ 10:08 AM | 49,459 Views
I happened upon a sale at Toys R Us where they had the Air Hogs Osprey at 50% off ($39.99) I hemmed and hawed about it and my girlfriend convinced me to buy it. After earlier reading the reviews on it I was pretty confident that she was a good flyer and I probably wouldn't be making a trip back to return it as I had in the past with a few other "winners" I'd purchased. I think it's a cool looking bird. The tilt wing, 350mah LiPo, large motors and vertical/horizontal flight are enticing. The TX requires 8 AA batteries I guess being that it has a 350mah battery. The largest I've seen Air Hogs put out since the Storm Launcher I think. Kinda makes her a borderline toy/hobby grade RTF. (IMHO) I've yet to have her in the air. I played with it a bit in the kitchen to give it a little trimming. But the weather here is still much too cold and windy to attempt a flight. So... I'm waiting on mother nature as usual. Seems that this area I've moved to isn't often conducive to small plane flight this time of year. I've learned that the hard way. Going against my instincts but just wanting to fly something. I was kind of spoiled when I lived in South Carolina and could fly on those days we'd get a "break" during the winter. I REALLY miss that!! I'll be giving a flight report ASAP.... Looking at the WX forecast it won't be too soon. Next Wednesday looks most favorable...

Posted by aeronaught | Sep 28, 2010 @ 02:23 AM | 12,420 Views
She's finished! I ended up using Aero Ace guts. I didn't have the heart to tear apart a brand new Singlewing or Piloto. I used a set of Harbor Freight Lightning landing gear and also installed a tail skid made from a straight pin. Indoor glide tests look good. I haven't weighed the plane yet so I'm not sure what I have for a weight. It's more than likely the same as any other. There's nothing different about it besides the landing gear.

This plane is a real joy to build and fly. This is my 7th. I've given the first six to friends and a couple of folks who asked me to build them one. (I'll probably keep this one for myself.) I just downloaded the 15 inch scaled up version plans from the Micro Ultimate thread that randynsaudi posted. I'll be getting to that sometime in the future.

I'm waiting for the weather to break here to maiden her. It's been dry as a bone here and wouldn't it figure when I finish a plane that we'd get three days of rain? Well, we really needed it so it is blessing. I'll update things when I get a flight in. Hopefully I'll have some video!

...Continue Reading
Posted by aeronaught | Sep 19, 2010 @ 08:34 PM | 12,478 Views
OK!! Now we're cookin' with gas! In my last blog entry I wrote that things weren't lookin' too good. I was having a rough time getting my fuse formed without cracking my turtle deck. Well on attempt number three things worked out. What I did to get the fuse to form was roll and compress the cowl and turtle deck with a small dowel to bend the foam. And it worked like a charm. She's almost painted (sharpied) and ready for assembly. I'm still in flux as to what to use for guts. I have Air Hogs, Piloto and Singlewing guts I can use. I would prefer throttle and rudder. So Air Hogs is out. I've built these planes with both Piloto and Singlewing guts in the past. I've even mixed and match the two. I really like the Piloto actuator, And if you've ever gutted a Singlewing you know that it's a hassle to get the actuator and wires out in one piece. I've gotten pretty good at it but there's always that chance that you could end up with a useless act if your not extremely cautious when removing it. My Piloto is in pretty rough shape. The Singlewing is brand new in the box. I'll mull this over while I'm building up the airframe. So here's what she looks like so far....

Stay tuned!!