Dynam piper cub - RC Groups
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Sep 02, 2011, 09:02 PM
Registered User

Dynam piper cub

I purchased this New Dynam Super Detail 4 Ch Piper J3 Cub 1245mm from nitroplanes.com a few days ago. Built the kit last night. Have not flown it yet.

I don't have many good things to say about the kit, but I will say that nitroplanes shipped the kit fast. The kit and box did not have any major visible damage on arrival.

This was my first RC plane build. I've been building plastic models and RC cars for awhile so I know my way around complex instructions, small parts and modeling tools. I purchased the Piper because I've read it's a good starter plane. I also wanted something I could build quickly and get in the air fast. The Dynam piper video preview http://www.nitroplanes.com/60a-dy894...w-rtf-24g.html on nitroplanes made it look promising. It flew well and I liked the scale so I said what the hell. I pulled the trigger on this kit before a more formal review of a production kit had been posted. As I have yet to find a review of this kit, here is my own.

Opening the box, the fuselage and a few loose parts were wrapped in bubble wrap with a few pieces of tape. The bright orange/yellow wings, tail and landing gear were sitting unprotected between thin pieces of cardboard. The transmitter and battery/charger were separately boxed inside the main box. There were also a few plastic bags full of random screws, springs and the cheap epoxy I've heard bad things about. The packaging was just barely passable, nothing above and beyond.

I flipped through the directions and things started to go down hill. Small photos and laughably vague instructions in Engrish lowered my excitement level. I'm not sure how much Chinese to English translators are going for these days but they must be too expensive for Dynam to afford.

Next I pulled out the pre-assembled landing gear and spun one of the wheels. The wheel fell off and rolled on the ground. I picked up the wheel and studied the wheel and the hub that holds it onto the axle. The industrial design quality was very poor for such a fundamental part of the plane. Part of the wheel hub had broken off and was stuck inside the wheel itself. I don't believe even a mint condition set of wheels and hubs for this kit would function properly. I tried to press the wheel back on the axle and one of the landing gear cross beams cracked and broke away from the axle. Cracked is the wrong word, crumbled is more accurate. All the yellow plastic in this kit is extremely brittle and "chalky". This did not matter much though because all the piper cross beam suspension on this kit is just for show. Non functional static and brittle cheap plastic. If you watch the end of the nitroplanes video closely, you can see they had exact same broken landing gear crossbeam problem described above. Just to keep things symmetrical, I broke the other crossbeam on purpose then used tie down straps to permanently keep them both in place.

The box had been open for about 5 minutes and I was fairly sure I would not be able to complete the kit. Without functioning wheels, how do I take off and land the plane? With my excitement level turning to anger, I focused on fixing the wheels to get them set and spinning. I debated just returning the kit but decided to find a way to scratch build a fix.

The wheel hub is basically a short tube that caps the wheel onto the axle. I opened a few ballpoint pens laying around and luckily found a plastic ink tube with the exact same dimensions and thickness to the wheel hub. The plastic used in the ballpoint pen was of higher quality than the plastic used in the Dynam kit. I put the wheel back on the axle and glued the ballpoint pen replacement onto the axle. With some trimmer lube the wheel spun perfectly and attached securely. I then did the same thing to the non broken wheel. It took about two hours to finally get the landing gear wheels properly working.

Next I glued the two foam wings together per the instructions and hooked up the aileron servos to the control board. I will say the servo and wiring quality seemed pretty good. The transmitter is also not bad for the price. I plugged in the lipo battery to get some juice going for later servo trimming. The battery and charger also seemed ok for the price.

Next I had to attach the wings to the fuselage. The wings attach with two very small screws for the size of the plane. It was quite hard to line up the screws through the wings and into the screw housings in the fuselage. This took 10 - 15 tries before I got both screws to properly line up and screw in. I also feel the fit and tightness of the screws was poor as this was probably the most important joint on the aircraft and also, the only joint holding the wings on. Because of this, I used two part epoxy to glue the wings onto the fuselage, removing any chance of ever taking the wings off again. If the screws had been a higher gauge and gripped the fuselage better, I would not have glued the wings down. Frustrating. My apartment is small and I really can't afford to have the fully assembled plane laying around.

At this point I considered the Dynam kit a $150.00 throwaway lesson and crash course into rc planes. With my expectations adjusted to zero, I continued on with the build.

Next I combined the foam rudder and stabilizer. A fairly good fit. The foam parts of this kit are molded well but the paint chips off very easily. I seated the tail into the fuselage with more two part epoxy, again, a nice fit.

I moved onto installing the landing gear to the fuselage. I got the landing gear screwed into the fuselage when I realized I had to screw the wing braces into the same holes as the landing gear. Thanks vague Engrish instructions. While removing one of the screws, the screw head broke off with very minimal torque. The screw was now stuck deep in the cheap yellow fuselage plastic with no conceivable way of removing it. Again, I thought this was probably it and the plane would never fly. I found a way to gouge through the plastic enough to get a grip on the screw with my Leatherman pliers. This was the only time I was happy the plastic was so brittle. I replaced the "weakest screw in history" with a bigger than provided screw and felt good about it.

At this point I was getting tired. This ready to fly plane build was going into it's 4th hour. I moved onto the rear landing gear. Very small cheap spongy wheel that hooks into the foam rudder with springs and is supposed to be steerable with the rudder control. I plugged in the lipo and turned the transmitter on. I found that the rear weight of the plane was being transferred into the foam rudder through the rear landing gear movement. This almost caused the rudder to rip off. I will not be flying this plane with the rear wheel connected to the rudder.

The plane does look decent from a distance and I can't complain about the engine, propeller, servos, transmitter or foam pieces. The main problems with this kit are the horrible yellow plastics used on critical parts, cheap undersized screws with less then favorable install points and vague instructions. If you want a $150.00 frustrating and throwaway crash course into RC planes, I guess this is the kit for you. If you want something fun to build, and want to own and fly a quality product, STAY AWAY! Pay the few extra bucks for something better.
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Sep 02, 2011, 09:36 PM
DFC~ We Do Flyin' Right
Vapor Trails's Avatar
Many people love this company; but far too many unsatisfied customers for me to risk my money with them. I am glad you found this website though, it will be very valuable resource for when you are researching future purchases.

My best recommendation for a beginner is simply to keep your purchases within the Horizon Hobby product line. Their customer support is second to NONE, and have always been incredibly receptive to any warranty issues I have had. Yes, there is a premium in price over the $100-$150 nitro planes models, but I assure that cost is completely justified by the fact that HH will stand behind their products and replace them should you have any issues...

Just my $0.02.

Best of luck though and do not get discouraged; if you can stomach making another purchase, I strongly recommend the Hobbyzone Champ as a first plane, and a Parkzone T-28 as your second. Hope this helps...
Oct 06, 2011, 10:59 PM
Mark Beltran
accel8or's Avatar
Thanks for the review. You saved me a lot of money.
Apr 27, 2013, 01:36 AM
Registered User

Same problem as bedhead...but...

I also wish I had read Bedhead's review before I bought the Dynam Piper Cub. No way in the WORLD can I get the wing screws to align with the retainers in the fuselage. Not sure what I'll do next but I guess gluing it on will probably be the final solution. If I wreck it and have to replace the wing I'll figure it out, I guess. I haven't flown an rc plane for about 30 years and this will be my 1st. As for the Dynam epoxy review...thanks! I'll throw it out. I use carpenters' wood glue (the yellow stuff) and have had no problem with it in boats so I hope I'm not missing out by not using epoxy. Oh...one other thing...it was packed so poorly that the entire fueslage was broken in half. Rather than go through the hassle of sending it back...yep...carpenters' wood glue and it looks fine.

One comment re: the person who swears by HH for r/c...Nitroplanes has been super with support for bad or broken pieces...by very first plane from the was the really big FW-190D and the cowling had separated from the fueslage. They sent me a whole new fuselage at no charge. I've had no other complaints but I'm looking forward to gaining enough experience to tackle the big B-25 that I bought a while ago. Oh...and the Me-262...I've never flown a jet and the video was enough for me to jump in. I'm excited about being able to fly well enough to try something without propellers. Oh...and NO gas planes for me...totally electric!
May 03, 2013, 04:14 PM
Always puts it on the numbers.
Spookeay's Avatar
Gezzzz why all the bad reviews. I love this cub. This would be my second one. The first burning up in the hobby room fire. I had about 2 years on it stock and never had the first problem with it. The second seen here in the video has about 20 Hr's on it so far and again, no problems. It's a easy plane to fly and tough as nails.
A cub like day. (5 min 47 sec)
Jun 28, 2013, 07:58 AM
Registered User
WVrailfan's Avatar
Originally Posted by Spookeay
Gezzzz why all the bad reviews. I love this cub. This would be my second one. The first burning up in the hobby room fire. I had about 2 years on it stock and never had the first problem with it. The second seen here in the video has about 20 Hr's on it so far and again, no problems. It's a easy plane to fly and tough as nails.
Glad to read your experience with this plane Spookeay. Nitro has them for $99. ARF and since I love my Dynam C-47 and Catalina, I ordered one. This will replace my very tired and much modified HZ Super Cub as my lazy evening flyer.

Jun 29, 2013, 10:32 PM
Registered User
WVrailfan's Avatar
Do you think this plane can handle the extra 100 grams or so it would take to cover it with Oracal film? I see this becoming a historic CAP plane.

Jul 18, 2013, 05:40 PM
Registered User
WVrailfan's Avatar
I purchased this plane before I read all the negative comments. And, to be honest, it is not the best thought out model Dynam has. I have both the Dynam C-47 and Catalina and both of those planes look and fly great. I would recommend both of them to anyone with some 4 channel experience.

The comments about the appearance of this plane out of the box are dead on. The paint work is awful, with at least three shades of yellow, because there was no effort to apply extra coats to the tinted plastic windscreen surround and yellow doesn't cover dark plastic well. The plastic should have been primed first or had multiple coats of yellow to get it closer to the yellow on the foam parts of the plane. The cowl, which is cast in yellow plastic is likely close enough for most folks, but a coat of the same yellow they painted the fuselage with would have helped.

All that said, the plane only cost $99.00, so for that amount, I'm okay with having to do a little touch up painting.

To be honest, a little masking tape and some yellow spray paint and the included decals, or in my case some from Callie Graphics, and you can have a decent looking little Cub.

I flew mine today for the first time and it flies like a Cub should, slow and easy. No damage on landing, but since I did nose over on my second flight, I will likely add some larger tires for flying from grass.

So, if you want a plane that doesn't need any tweaking, look elsewhere for a Cub. Good luck finding one this size for $100. If you like to paint or tinker, this plane isn't that bad.

Jul 18, 2013, 07:44 PM
Always puts it on the numbers.
Spookeay's Avatar
I love these cubs. Cheep and just a blast to fly. they also will pick up some speed in a dive with the 3 blade prop.
Jul 21, 2013, 09:51 PM
Registered User
WVrailfan's Avatar
I flew this plane a few more times this evening. It was late and the light wasn't idea for photos, but I did manage to get a couple.

I've conceded the issue with appearance regarding the thin paint on the windshield surround.

However, after flying the plane a half dozen times now, I don't see the problems with the struts and landing gear others have posted about. I am landing on grass, and I did nose it over twice, but, I have that problem with most of my tail draggers at one time or another. The gear and wing struts are still intact.

I think under "normal" conditions this plane holds up as well as most. If you land hard, yup, you might break something. That is pretty much true of any plane.

So far, I am enjoying my little Cub. If flies like a Cub, slow, gentle in the turns and pretty easy to land. It's not a race horse, but I was expecting a Cub not a Mustang. I flew 10 minutes using a 2200 battery and only used half of the battery, floating around at half throttle. I think this will be one of my "go to" planes for calm lazy evening flying.

Aug 22, 2013, 02:18 AM
Registered User

Dynam piper cub

I just got mine from Nitro and after reading all the reviews,I have mixed emotions about this plane.I think that as far as the paint,yes its 3 shades of yellow but it can be fixed with a can of Piper Cub yellow.I do see were there are some weakness in some of the design of this plane.But for $99.00 you can't get another cub in this class with all that it comes with for this price that does seem to fly good when set-up properly.That being said,I hope my experience is a good one to review on.

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