Speedo Pro Mark II Instruction Manual - RC Groups
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Jun 01, 2011, 11:44 PM
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Speedo Pro Mark II Instruction Manual

Speedo Pro Mark II Instruction Manual

This thread is the RCGroups.com unofficial instruction manual for the Speedo Pro Mark II slope sailplane from R2Hobbies. The information here has been gathered from fellow Speedo pilots and from information posted on the Speedo Thermo 1.2m thread.

Update May 1, 2012 - The instruction manual is now available to download as a PDF. See attached file.

I would like to say a big thankyou to all of those who contributed towards the manual. In a future release I plan to add construction pictures to make things a little easier for the first time builder.
Last edited by Stunt Double; Apr 30, 2012 at 09:42 PM.
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Jun 01, 2011, 11:45 PM
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The Speedo Pro Mark II from R2Hobbies is a 1.2m slope sailplane. It comes as an ARF kit with a fiberglass fuselage and a conventional rib & spar wing covered in film. The Speedo has a reputation as a great all-rounder capable of flying in a wide range of conditions. The streamlined fuselage combined with a light-weight construction makes it extremely agile and fun to fly. It is capable of high-speed flight & aerobatic manoeuvres. The Speedo is suitable for intermediate to advanced pilots.

Wingspan: 1200mm
Length: 780mm
Flying Weight: 350-400g
Control Surfaces: Aileron / Elevator

Kit Contents
  • 1 x fuselage
  • 1 x canopy
  • 2 x wings
  • 1 x wing joiner
  • 1 x horizontal stabilizer
  • 1 x elevator pushrod
  • 1 x elevator pushrod tube
  • 1 x elevator servo tray
  • 2 x aileron pushrods
  • 1 x pair wing servo covers
  • 2 x wing bolts
  • 2 x wing washers
  • 2 x wing bolt spacers
  • 3 x control horns
  • 1 x tow hook
  • 1 x tow hook mounting plate
  • assorted screws

Other Items Required

Radio Gear:
  • radio
  • receiver (slim)
  • receiver battery
  • 3 x micro servos
  • 2 x 10cm servo extension cables
  • pushrod connectors / clevises

Tools and Supplies Required
  • CA adhesive (medium)
  • epoxy adhesive (5 minute)
  • hot glue (optional)
  • sand paper (medium)
  • adhesive tape (clear sticky tape / office tape)
  • hobby knife
  • phillips head screw driver
  • ruler
  • set square
  • drill
  • drill bit (1mm)
  • pen / marker
  • lead weight (approx. 40-60g)
Last edited by Stunt Double; Apr 30, 2012 at 09:37 PM.
Jun 01, 2011, 11:46 PM
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The Speedo requires slim micro servos for the wings ideally no greater than 9mm in width. Wider servos can be used but they will press into the covering film creating a small bulge on the top of the wing. A micro servo can be used for the elevator too. Most importantly this servo cannot be too high. Being a light-weight model the Speedo can use servos with low speed & torque ratings.
  • Vigor VS-12M - This is an ideal servo which is suitable for both the ailerons and elevator. They are very small, cheap, light and have good centering.
  • HXT-900 - This is another cheap choice.
  • Hitec HS-55 - This is a common servo available from your Local Hobby Shop.


There are two common battery setups used with the Speedo. The first method is using a 4xAAA NiMH round battery pack. The fuselage canopy opening is not quite wide enough to fit this style of pack so it must be enlarged slightly.
  • Eneloop 4xAAA round battery pack - This is a common battery pack available from your Local Hobby Shop.
The second method is using a small 2 cell Lipo together with a UBEC. This is a cheap and light-weight alternative. The Lipo can be pushed up into the nose with the UBEC positioned behind it.


Other Items
Last edited by Stunt Double; Sep 22, 2011 at 11:20 PM.
Jun 01, 2011, 11:46 PM
Registered User

Prepare the Radio Gear
  • Charge the radio and receiver batteries.
  • Switch on the radio and check all trim settings are set to neutral.
  • Connect the battery to the receiver.
  • Connect the servos to the receiver (aileron and elevator channels).
  • Check that the radio gear is functioning correctly (this step is also used to center the servos).

Install the Wing Servos
  • Separate the wing servo covers.
  • Cut the covering film away from the wing servo recess (be careful not to cut through the film on the top side of the wing).
  • Find a one-sided servo control arm. The distance from the servo horn to its outer hole should be approximately 15mm. Trim any excess length.
  • Attach the control arm to the aileron servo at a 90 degree angle.
  • Lay the servo against the servo cover. Align the servo so that the control arm is centered inside the groove.
  • Once the servo is aligned correctly, mark an outline around the servo.
  • Glue the servo onto the cover using CA.
  • Check that the servo fits correctly inside the wing. Depending on the thickness of the servo used, the cover can be lowered by trimming the edges a little.
  • Connect a servo extension cable to the servo. Apply tape at the join to keep it secure.
  • Pull the servo cable through the wing using the piece of string found inside the servo recess (if its not possible to do this using the string, use the elevator pushrod instead).
  • Attach the aileron pushrod z-bend to the outer hole of the control arm.
  • Put the servo into the wing recess and center the servo cover.
  • Once the cover is aligned correctly, drill 4 holes into each corner using a 1mm drill bit (be careful not to drill through to the top side of the wing).
  • Screw the cover in place using the self-tapping screws (the two screws closest to the trailing edge may need to be shortened to prevent them from poking through the covering film on the top of the wing).
  • Attach a control horn to the aileron. The front of the horn base should be flush with the front edge of the aileron.
  • Connect the pushrod to the control horn using a pushrod connector, z-bend or a clevis. Use a hole on the control horn approximately 6mm from the aileron surface.
  • Repeat these steps for the other wing.

Install the Elevator Servo
  • Sand/cut the thickest side of the servo tray until it fits tightly inside the fuselage (approximately 26mm width).
  • Check that the elevator servo fits into the servo tray and enlarge the hole if required (the servo should be positioned slightly closer to one side of the fuselage so that a control arm approximately 10mm in length can move freely without contacting the side of the fuselage).
  • Insert the tray into the fuselage and position it so that the rear of the tray is aligned with the rear of the canopy opening.
  • Check that enough space is left in front of the tray for the battery and any other radio gear to be used. Adjust if necessary.
  • Once the servo tray is aligned correctly, glue it in place using epoxy adhesive or hot glue.
  • Insert the elevator servo into the tray with the servo horn facing towards the front of the fuselage.
  • Screw (or glue) the servo into the tray.

Install the Radio Gear
  • Insert the receiver battery pack into the fuselage as far forward as possible (the opening will need to be enlarged if using a 4xAAA battery pack).
  • Thread the battery and elevator servo cables out through the wing saddle opening.
  • Connect the cables to the receiver.
  • Insert the receiver and the attached cables into the wing saddle opening (it is possible to position a receiver in the front of the fuselage under the canopy if enough space is available).
  • Add some material such as foam to protect the battery and receiver.
Last edited by Stunt Double; Sep 22, 2011 at 11:42 PM.
Jun 01, 2011, 11:47 PM
Registered User
Install the Elevator Pushrod
  • Check that the hole at the rear of the fuselage is large enough for the elevator pushrod to pass through and move freely. Enlarge the hole using a drill if required.
  • Insert the pushrod into the hole and push it forwards towards the elevator servo.
  • Cut a piece of the elevator pushrod tube to a length of 150mm.
  • Slide the pushrod tube over the pushrod from the front of the fuselage.
  • Position the pushrod tube so that it starts at the rear of the canopy opening. The tube should run down along one side of the fuselage at the wing saddle opening.
  • Once the pushrod tube is aligned correctly, glue it in place using epoxy adhesive.
  • Find a one-sided servo control arm (extra arms can be removed if necessary). The distance from the servo horn to its outer hole should be approximately 10mm. Trim any excess length.
  • Attach the control arm to the elevator pushrod using a pushrod connector, z-bend or a clevis.
  • Check the elevator servo is centered.
  • Attach the control arm to the servo at a 90 degree angle.
  • Check that the control arm moves freely and does not contact the side of the fuselage.

Install the Horizontal Stabilizer
  • Measure and mark the middle point of the stabilizer along the elevator hinge line (142mm).
  • Using a set square, draw a line perpendicular to the hinge line from the middle mark up to the leading edge of the stabilizer.
  • Insert the stabilizer into the groove on the fuselage tailfin and center it along the marked line.
  • Using a ruler, check that the stabilizer is centered correctly.
  • Using a set square, check that the stabilizer is aligned correctly. Check that the stabilizer is perpendicular to the tailfin. Also check that the elevator hinge line is perpendicular to the tailfin too.
  • Temporarily hold the stabilizer in place by applying a small amount of CA.
  • Check the alignment of the stabilizer once again and adjust if necessary.
  • Once the stabilizer is aligned correctly, glue it in place using epoxy adhesive or hot glue.
  • Attach a control horn to the elevator. The front of the horn base should be approximately 6mm back from the hinge line.
  • Check that the control horn does not contact the fuselage when down elevator is applied. Adjust if necessary.
  • Connect the control horn to the pushrod using a pushrod connector, z-bend or a clevis. Use a hole on the control horn approximately 9mm from the elevator surface.
  • Trim any excess length of the pushrod.

Attach the Wing
  • Insert the wing joiner into the hole on one of the wings.
  • Attach the other wing and align correctly.
  • Tape the wings together along the join using adhesive tape (a simple light-weight tape such as sticky tape will be sufficient to keep the wings together during flight and will also allow the wing to break apart with reduced damage in the event of a rough landing).
  • Trim the covering film and tape away from the bolt holes.
  • Place the wing into the fuselage wing saddle.
  • Insert the wing bolt spacers into the bolt holes.
  • Mark the spacers at the top of the wing.
  • Cut the spacers just below the mark (the spacers should shortened so that they sit just a fraction below the top of the wing).
  • Connect the aileron servo cables to the receiver.
  • Add the wing washers to the wing bolts.
  • Insert the wings bolts into the wing bolt spacers.
  • Align the wing with the wing saddle and screw it onto the fuselage (the longer bolt is used with the hole closer to the nose).

Attach the Canopy

The canopy can be held in place using adhesive tape before each flight. A more permanent method can be created with the addition of pins, magnets or screws.
Last edited by Stunt Double; Sep 26, 2011 at 07:29 PM.
Jun 01, 2011, 11:48 PM
Registered User

Centre of Gravity settings measured from the leading edge of the wing at the wing root:
65mm – novice
70mm – intermediate
75mm – advanced
  • With the plane fully assembled, measure and mark the desired CG from the leading edge on the bottom of the wing.
  • Add lead weight inside the nose of the fuselage until the plane is balanced at the mark (approximately 60g required).
  • Place the plane on a level surface.
  • Check that the plane is balanced laterally. If the plane has a tendency to fall to one side, add weight to the lighter wing until it remains upright (this can be done by adding lead weight in the servo recess under the wing servo cover or by inserting a nail into the wing tip).


Adjust the linkages and radio settings (travel adjustment and differential) to give the following control throws:

Low Rates = +3mm / -3mm
High Rates = +9mm / -9mm
Low Rates = +6mm / -3mm
High Rates = +20mm / -10mm
Ailerons = +15mm

  • Check that the radio and receiver batteries are charged.
  • Switch on the radio.
  • Connect the battery to the receiver.
  • Attach the canopy.
  • Check that the elevator & ailerons move in the correct directions.
  • Check that the wing is attached securely.

Your Speedo is now ready to fly.
Last edited by Stunt Double; Apr 30, 2012 at 09:38 PM.
Jun 01, 2011, 11:48 PM
Registered User

Here is a list of some of the common modifications made to the Speedo:
  • Add carbon tow/rods to the wing saddle opening.
  • Add a rudder.
  • Make a removable horizontal stabilizer.
  • Add optional ballast.
  • Make a carbon socked fuselage.
  • Make a replacement wing using other materials such as foam, glass or carbon.
  • Add a 3+1 AAA NiMH battery pack.
  • Add a tow hook.

More information about these modifications can be found in the Speedo Thermo 1.2m or the
Outlaw Speedo threads.
Last edited by Stunt Double; Jul 01, 2011 at 06:26 PM.
Jun 02, 2011, 01:17 AM
Registered User
Gwalch's Avatar
Top work so far

Might be an idea to mention the 2 x little bits of carbon tube that they have to run the wing bolts through in the wing. Like a collet.
(Having a blonde moment so cannot remember what they are called.)

I ended up gluing these into 1 side of the wing bolt hole.. 1 glued on the right side and the other glued on the left side so I can still get the wings apart and they come away with the wings and stay in place.

Before we glued these in place we used to get a lot of wing wobble.. now they are quite stable.

If I think of any more I'll chuck it on here!!

Jun 02, 2011, 03:39 AM
Rusty Nail's Avatar
OK - a few more:

Most of these assume this is the first plane a pilot (kid) will fly. You will need to determine the level that this is aimed for. Maybe highlight or extract the important bits so experienced people can skim it easily.
  • A square ruler is a 'set square'
  • The 3+1 AAA battery orientation allows more forward battery placement
  • Some receivers and servos are ok on 1s lipo - old AM & FM gear eg. but might as well have the weight in safer batteries.
  • Put foam rubber around batteries and receiver.
  • Best to keep the wings as light as possible, especially near the tips so light servos and wing balance weight in the wing tips (nails).
  • 10cm extensions may not be enough for receivers in the front.
  • Explain what correct control movement is - for the ailerons in a right turn the right aileron is up.
  • I know some people throw it off a cliff immediately, but a new person is best to do a few test hand launches over soft grass to iron out major problems safely.
  • A note on correct positioning of the launch hook and bungee and tow line launching.
  • In the Appendix some notes on casting lead methods: lead shot, sand molds, etc.
  • Weight box in fuse.
  • Explain how to set up spoilerons (on a non computer 6ch heli set) and control throw.
  • Choosing a slope, launching, first turns and landing.
Jun 02, 2011, 04:50 AM
Registered User
Gwalch - I havent seen these little carbon pieces before, maybe they are a new addition to the Speedo kit? Do you have a photo you could show me?

Rusty Nail - a few more good points there that I can add to the instructions. Just remember this is an instruction manual for the Speedo only and not a slope soaring tutorial. There are plenty of other resources available discussing sailplane terminology and the likes and I dont want to complicate this manual.
Jun 02, 2011, 05:57 AM
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Gwalch's Avatar
Originally Posted by lloydh
Gwalch - I havent seen these little carbon pieces before, maybe they are a new addition to the Speedo kit? Do you have a photo you could show me?
Just ask and you shall receive.

Just so happens I have a spare Speedo in the box out in Man Land .. so I have taken a pic of the Bag Of Bits.

We got our first Speedo's a while ago.. and the carbon bits were in that one and also in the virgin one in the shed.

You can see the pieces in question up the top of the pic.
They are a 6mm rod.
The wing bolts go through these when bolting the wing on.
The big one to the front hole and the smaller one to the rear hole.

I glued 1 to the right half of the wing.. and the other to the left half.
Thus they are rigid in place but the wings will still come apart when I need to.

Before I glued these in place the wings would wobble quite significantly even when bolted in.
We originally thought we would have to put foam or similar under the wing seat to create a seal.. but then we would have needed to source longer bolts to compensate for the thickness of the foam.
Now there is very little wobble.

Hope this is clear enuff!!

Last edited by Gwalch; Jun 02, 2011 at 05:58 AM. Reason: Coz
Jun 02, 2011, 05:48 PM
I'd rather be.....
geoffers0_0's Avatar

Removable h-stab & rudder mod

I'd posted this on the main Speedo thread, but it may help as a build variant with rudder, plus removable h-stab for ease of transport.

You need a 3+1 AAA battery arrangement, to give you space for the extra servo (RX goes under the wing saddle)

Jun 03, 2011, 08:16 PM
Registered User
Hi guys,

Thanks for the extra info. Ive updated some of the instructions and its looking very good, almost ready for the PDF.

Gwalch - I called the little bits of carbon tube 'wing bolt spacers'. If you can think of a better name let me know. Added this to the attach wing section.

As for the modifications im not going to list them all in detail. Theres too much info for each one and it could really use a thread of its own. If you have more suggestions please let me know.
Jun 03, 2011, 08:47 PM
Registered User
Just need to confirm spoileron throw settings - what are you guys using? Mine are around +8mm.
Jun 04, 2011, 10:15 AM
Registered User
57sailplane's Avatar
i am confused by the split wing set up being less able to break then one that is all glued togather. in my experiances a wing joiner expecialy one that is not glued on one end will be weaker then a wing that is all glued togather and will likely have way more damage.

later andrew K.

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