Hellcat, Take 3 - RC Groups
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Apr 09, 2003, 07:02 PM
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mars's Avatar

Hellcat, Take 3

Posted this in Scale Modelling and got an anemic response so I thought I would try here as I will fly this plane in my local park.

100sq.in. area

The first one exploded on "landing" due to pilot error on its maiden flight

The second one flew great (non-aerobatic) on an M-100 and 8 720Nimhs at 9.3oz. but got crushed by my dog in the back seat of our car. Yes, we still have and love the dog mostly because his destruction allowed me to upgrade the power system and build the plane to be more durable ;-)

Here's the third to be powered by a Hacker B20-31s on 3 1200Mah Lipos at 10.5oz. Wing loading will be in the neighborhood of 15oz./s.f.

Do you think it will fly? The wing loading is about the same as a Ryan Warbird only on a smaller airframe.

I will post more pictures when I'm done building and a flight report after the maiden.
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Apr 09, 2003, 08:43 PM
Leave me alone!
Martin Hunter's Avatar
She looks great! At that weight she'll be a bit of a rocket, though. She'll be quite flyable but just no fun on landing.

Apr 10, 2003, 11:40 AM
Registered User
mars's Avatar

Made a Little Progress

Hi All,

Harryo ran the motocalc numbers for me and sure enough the stall speed is at 18mph. Bad news.

The good news is we ran the plane at a weight of 9.3 oz as it used to be in its Mark II configuration, and the stall speed was 17mph.

I flew the Mark II Hallcat many times and landing was fast but very possible.

Anyway, I want a Hellcat to live up to its name a little anyway It'll be a pussy cat in the air and a true hell's child on landing!

Apr 10, 2003, 11:47 AM
Splash's Avatar
Looks Awesome

Im working on the Scorpion Hellcat and just getting ready to put power to it. Its a bit bigger and AUP will be around 27 oz.

Keep us informed on how it flys.

Apr 10, 2003, 01:27 PM
Mmmm... crunchy balsa.
harryo's Avatar
...and the mars fleet grows.

Marshall, based on your history with this plane, I think you'll have no problem flying her. I've had unreliable results from MotoCalc before. It told me that my Astro 010 would draw 5.5A when in fast it was drawing 8.1A!!! I know we talked about this on the phone, but I thought I'd post this info since people tend to rely too heavily on 'virtual' testing instead of the real world. It's a great way to get a ballpark estimate though, I admit.

Wing incidence, CG and decalage could also affect how she lands and handles. There's no reliable way to enter all of this into Motocalc, so don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

I'll bring my camera for the maiden!!!

Apr 10, 2003, 01:31 PM
Registered Snoozer
Neil Morse's Avatar

Wow, it looks superb! Hope you are going to bring it to the meeting tonight.

Based on my seeing your Mark II version fly and land, I don't think the landings will be a problem at all. Can't wait to see it in the air. It will be a lot more fun than the Mark II version with "purple power."

Apr 10, 2003, 05:41 PM
Moderated. Severely.
TheAddler's Avatar
Hey Mars-
Looks great! I thought I'd find this thread and see it after your PM. Then I read the thread, then I saw talk about a meeting, then glanced at you signatures.... San Francisco!! I live in Santa Rosa. I fly with the Wine Country flyers, but have yet to see another electric plane. Where do you guys fly down there? (And how do you hide from the wind

Apr 10, 2003, 06:13 PM
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mars's Avatar

SF Vultures

Hi Darren,

The Vultures is a model airplane club in SF. Here's the site:


A few of us fly mornings before work at different sites around the city. We fly at Crissy Field with views of the Golden Gate Bridge, at Pier 30 with views of the Bay Bridge, and various ball parks in the city depending on the size of planes we have ready to go at any given time. What a rough life!

We also fly weekends at the field noted on the web page above. Mornings are best as the wind does pick up as the day progresses. About a 5 minute drive from the Roosevelt field is a cliff where some slope soar when the wind blows.

If you are ever headed down this way drop me an e-mail (I will PM it to you) so we can get together. Or you could just stop by the Roosevelt flying field.

Take care,

Apr 15, 2003, 05:07 PM
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mars's Avatar

Maiden Successful...Sort of

Hi All,

Beautiful morning here is San Francisco. I headed out to the local field with my Hellcat in tow around 7:30. Set her up and did a range check. Everything looked good so I lit up the fire-breathing Hacker B20-31s and gave her a toss with my left hand.

The plane torqued a little left but I was expecting this so I fed in a bit of right aileron and pointed her for the sky. She climbed like a champ and settled into level flight at half throttle after I fed in about 3 clicks of aileron trim.

I flew the plane around up high for about 5 minutes to get the feel for the controls. Wow was a shaky!

I did a couple of loops and a nice axial roll and she handled very well.

I tested the stall speed up high and did notice a tendancy to drop the left wing when stalling, but the stall speed seemed slow enough...

So I set up for a landing even though I had at least another 5 minutes of flying time. The little Hellcat came in tame as a kitten to about 5 feet off the deck. At this point I got stupid and cut the throttle and flaired a bit to burn off speed. BAD IDEA!!! The Hellcat wallowed in to about 2 feet and then tip stalled to the left. All I had to do was keep the glide path I was on originally until the plane got to a 1 foot altitude and then cut the throttle. The little 'cat extended its calws and gave me a good swat across the face, but next time I'll just fly the little guy into the ground.

As for damage, the left wing needs to be glued back together at the dihedral joint, recovered, and repainted. I should have the littel guy back in the air tomorrow...Thursday at teh latest.

Until Next TIme,

Apr 15, 2003, 05:31 PM
Mmmm... crunchy balsa.
harryo's Avatar

THAT was the sweetest looking Hellcat I've seen fly yet! She flew straight out with PLENTY of authority. She will fly... Oh yes... she will fly again!

mars: Neil said to tell you, "Congrats on the flight, condolences on the landing." Ah Neil... with his oratary prowess. I couldn't have put it better.

Apr 15, 2003, 06:07 PM
Registered User
mars's Avatar

More Pictures here...

Harryo has offered me space to post pretty plane pictures on his server.

Check out more Hellcat pictures here:


I will take some fix-it pictures tonight and put them in the gallery. I then hope to get some in-flight shots and post them too...

Mars (Thanks Harryo)

PS -- Check out Harryo's FANTASTIC Moustique in the gallery. Talk about a beautiful plane...

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