Top Flite Metrick - dud or worth flying? - RC Groups
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Jul 19, 2009, 03:35 PM
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Top Flite Metrick - dud or worth flying?

I have a really old kit of the Top Flite Metrick. There are only a few pics of it on the net and it's long out of production. Does anyone know anything about how this plane flew. Should I build it? I was thinking of connverting it to an elctric glider but I was also looking at some other sky bench designs. Did anyone have this and fly it? Thanks.
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Jul 19, 2009, 05:45 PM
the lift is always in the sun!
I had one and loved it....built it in '82 and flew till '95 or so. It had a short production run only because Top Flite closed up not long after it came out.

The E-205 foil was better than the typical flat bottom foil of it's time. It likes be flown a little faster than say, a Gentle Lady and more like the Spirit.

If I were to build one today, (and I probably would if I had one), I would certainly take advantage of today's much, much lighter radio gear and servos. I built mine with standard heavy servos and full size receiver. I would use servos like HS-81's. I also would power the spoilers with something like an HS-55 in each wing instead of the old thread system pulled by a single standard servo in the fuse as drawn in the plans....

Todays newer, lighter gear will drop as much as 5 or 6 ounces off of the original design. If you build it as an electric, this weight savings is subtantial and you could still end up lighter than the design weight.

Add a little carbon to the top and botton of the spar and your wing will be strong enough for Hose Monster hi-starts and medium winches (assuming you build it as a pure glider).

Good luck and enjoy....
Jul 19, 2009, 06:15 PM
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I built one in about 1985. I was extremely disappointed in the quality of the kit relative to other Top Flite U/C kits I had built years before. I replaced about 30% of the strip stock, mostly out of chioce but some out of necessity and I found some of the construction methods more complicated than need be. I also increased the dihedral slightly on the recommendation of Dirty Dan Rutherford. On the plus side, it did build into a pretty ship and it flew quite well (once I got used to flying faster). I still have the wings and stabs in almost pristine condition and may mate them to a fuselage in the future.
Jul 19, 2009, 06:47 PM
Balsa breaks better
Thermaler's Avatar
It actully had a combo 193/205 airfoil if I remember.
I made a 205 template for the leading edge by mistake on my first one, one of the good kind.
I am building my third one because I built the second to plan on purpose, bad mistake.

Jul 19, 2009, 08:28 PM
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R.M. Gellart's Avatar
The 193/205 combo was on the Antares, I do think this was the 205...

Jul 19, 2009, 09:39 PM
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What was wrong with the dihederal and the 205 airfoil as per the plans?
Jul 19, 2009, 09:56 PM
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shoe's Avatar
I flew one quite a bit in the early 90s. In my opinion is really needs more polyhedral. Do some quick calcs or copy something like the Spirit 2m as far as polyhedral would me my advice. Other than that it was a lot of fun. I flew it off a winch, high start, and slope and had a ball.
Jul 19, 2009, 10:29 PM
Master of the Wind
G Norsworthy's Avatar
I flew against a few of these about 20 years ago. They tended to be heavy and needed more poly, as stated above. In that class the Sagitta 600 was a much better model. With careful (light) building and some modifications it could be a decent flying plane.
Jul 20, 2009, 01:06 AM
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The Sagitta 600 would fly very well even if NOT built light. I've had one that weighed 43 oz. and flew very well. I remember, I think, winning sportsman in an ESL contest in very light air with it. And some other contests too.

As far as the Metric, I had the impression from watching others that it had a nice glide but often didn't turn well. Since the rudder was substantial, this probably means it needed more dihedral. I'd say go ahead and build it.

If, as seems likely, the airfoil was similar to the Sagitta's, then it's probably a good idea not to slow it too much. The first day I flew the Sagitta I tried to slow it down on approach, and it went into this oscillation (dutch roll, perhaps) like the one the scared pilot does in Top Gun. (Ok, I guess I'm dating myself here.) Of course, I remember the tail as being longer than the Sagitta had, so maybe it wouldn't do the roll thing. Also, don't try to "MUSH" it. Might stall pretty sharply. Better to investigate at higher altitude. However, it's not necessarily a bad thing and if like the Sagitta, a lot more manageable than, say, the old Prodigy.
Jul 20, 2009, 06:24 PM
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Ahh yes, the Metric. One of my all time favorite quotes concerns the Metric.
Five of us were going to the '82 Nats in Lincoln, Neb. and to maximize our flying pleasure we all wanted planes in all three classes (in those days 2-m, standard, and unlimited), so my buddy Jack had a friend build him a Metric.

Now Jack was a very good pilot (he got 2nd or 3rd in ulimited that year), but he never could get the Metric working to his satisfaction. His dissatisfaction with the plane grew as the Nats progressed and at one point he was fussing over it when an enthusiastic young fellow approached. "Hey, a Metric! I'm building one of those! What do you think of it?"

Jack, who's as straght and clean cut as a glider flyer can possibly be, gave him a cold stare. "I think it's about the most worthless piece of s--- it's ever been my misfortune to own." (Jack sold the Metric before we left Lincoln.)

(That trip was memorable in other ways as well. Five of us made the long drive from the West Coast squeezed into Bob Dodgson's little Toyota motor home. On the return trip Bob said he was thinking of designing a new airplane and wanted input from the four of us, so we spelled out what we wanted it to have. Bob listened and incorporated virtually all of our suggestions into his new design. That was the birth of the Windsong!)
Jul 20, 2009, 06:44 PM


I had/built two. One for me and one for my son..They did need more dihedral or polyhedral.. I called and ask Scott Christsen to sell me a wing kit or give me a break on another kit to try to alter and was turned down.. They were not worth building in my estimation. I couldn't wait to get rid of them.. Sorry, but you ask... Brian
Jul 20, 2009, 09:41 PM
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Wow, love the Metrick bashing. I'm thinking I might keep the balsa to fix other broken things. I don't have the time to waste these days on something I might not like. It looks nice - too bad about the other stuff.
Jul 20, 2009, 09:50 PM
Registered User
Why would Top Flite not have done any testing and figured this kind of stuff out first? Are there any duds flying now that get the same kind of reviews? I don't think I have ever read a bad review of any kit on this website.
Jul 20, 2009, 10:02 PM
Registered User
So, what is a nice kit to own these days that is not considered "retro" or vintage, flies really nicely, isn't one of those ultra skinny carbon fiber high tech things, and isn't clunky looking like the great planes spirit 100? I would love something similar to the bird of time without the totally retro thing going on. I looked at the sky bench gliders and I wonder if they too fall into the clunky retro glider category. I love the cularis except that it is made of foam. I would love some input because I think I'm going to sht can the Metrick. Thanks

Jul 20, 2009, 10:19 PM

Ray Hayes

He has some nice kits.. Well worth looking into. The other two 2M models I really like are ARFs. One is the Cirrus and the other is the ASPIRE.. Both have the same name as other ships, but these are 2M ARFs that go to gether really quick and fly great. However they are both dis continued. You have to watch here or Flea/bay to get them. I got one of each. The Tower Hobbies Vista is another cheapy that flys very well for the money.. Brian

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