Hybrid-f3j - RC Groups
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Oct 25, 2012, 04:30 PM
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Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. I was an avid sailplane flyer when I lived in Colorado, Mostly slope soaring, some scale, T/D and general flying. Since moving to Lumberton,TX which is about 98 miles east northeast of Houston I now concentrate mostly in Helicopters, planes and ducted fan jets. Here recently I re opened a large box and inside there is a brand new Hybrid f3j sailplane that has been in the same shipping box. I got the bird in a trade about 7 or 8 years ago and have not flown it. Upon opening this box, it has made me think about flying this sailplane. Here is what I know, Its called the Competition Hybrid at the time you could purchase it thru either Kennedy composits or thru NSP when they were in business. Description : Center wing panel is fully Moulded with the flaps. The outer panels plug into the center panel. The outer panels are constructed of a Kevlar ( yellow) and Carbon ( black) cloth weave. This weave starts at the bottom of the main carbon spar , wraps around the entire leading edge of the outer panel and terminates at the top of the spar. The rest of the wing is contest grade balsa ribs each one capped with carbon. That section is then covered with a transparent yellow covering. The actual ailerons are moulded, ( the part that moves up and down). The fuse has a slip on nose cone and is glass/kevlar. The main panel bolts on top of the fuse with 3 steel botls. Just underneath at the trailing edge of the main panel where the fusalage is it is constructed with the same carbon kevlar weave that is on the outer wing panels but in circular shape. It extends all the way toward the section where the V tails mount. The tails are all moulded too. Here is my question, Is this sailplane still competetive in T/D, what airfoil does it use?, How does it fly, and how well does it thermal? There is hardly any information on the net. ANY INFORMATION, please would help ot a lot
thanking you guys in advance,
PS Will try to upload photos tonight if I can or Know how to, Never done that on this site. oh yeah, I know you could spend a small fortune buying an up to date fully moulded T/D ship from Europe but I rather fly this if its competetive..........
Last edited by fireblade47; Oct 25, 2012 at 04:37 PM.
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Oct 25, 2012, 05:28 PM
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I have a Graphite D-box made by Vladimir models it is 3.45m span.
I think they made mine, then your one, then changed over to fully moulded.
I think the section is MH32.
I still fly mine and it is great, if it is what I think it is - build it, they are nice.

Except, I chopped the nose off and added a motor.

Oct 25, 2012, 05:44 PM
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Thanks Anthony, I appreciate the info
Mike, Mine is 121.5 inches in span. Do you know if it is still competitive??
Oct 25, 2012, 06:07 PM
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Mike, as you know it is not new and every week a better plane comes out.
Vladimir's latest is the Maxa and that is competitive.

Back to Graphite.......... If it is in rising air, it goes up and in sinking air it comes down. The full crow works well and it will land bang on the spot.

If I was flying my Maxa and a better pilot was flying the Graphite - he would beat me.

No it is not state of the art, but it flies really nice. It is not an ultra-lightweight but in a breeze that does not matter, and mine has a motor, esc and battery as well.

Build it, fly it, enjoy it............. if you get the bug in a few months time, then the latest flavour of the month will have just come out and you can sell it and buy that. Then say to yourself - "I paid all that money and it is not really that much better."

As I said, I like mine and I fly it a lot, it is just very pleasant.

(Nearly forgot) If you slope it, then it is also good - then you may want to add some weight, for extra speed.

Last edited by esloted; Oct 25, 2012 at 06:08 PM. Reason: Put my name twice
Oct 25, 2012, 07:13 PM
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Thanks Anthony, you are right, it's really not the plane but the piloting skills. I just wanted some information. Thanks for your input though. Wish I could slope it but don't live in Colorado anymore.
Oct 25, 2012, 09:23 PM
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Mark Miller's Avatar
The Hybrid was sold by NSP. I sold a different version that was called Piper which was a cross tail and had a few other tweaks. The manufacturer in Ukraine has closed shop.

They are a good sailplane and launch well.

Mark Miller
Isthmus Models
Oct 25, 2012, 10:43 PM
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I see 3 critical areas. How well does it launch? It seems like most competition gliders today launch very high in comparison to something like an old Mantis. Then there's strength to withstand the above, and to withstand dork landings.And then, how much does it weigh? I think the older gliders tend to be a little heavier than something like a Supra. I'm assuming the airfoil and wing design are reasonably good, but I suppose that's hard to know.

If it shares a lot in common with the Graphite 2, I expect that it's strong and launches very well. WIth the built up tips and tails, it may be lighter than my Graphite 2, which would remove the other issue. Mine has a lot of lead in the nose.

Is this it?

Something to keep in mind:
A v tail can handle very well if it's big enough, but a lot of them were made too small.


I don't know what the theoretical optimum is, but one might copy the vertical tail volume (cv aka vv) seen on the Supra:
As long as the wing isn't too much heavier at the tips (i.e. larger radius of gyration) and the tail moment is a similar proportion to the span, this ought to work pretty well. Otherwise you might want it even larger.

I have a Graphite 2 with a v-tail. It's kind of a handful when it's slow, and it has a violent stall which can be hard to recover from without losing quite a bit of altitude. Evaluated by the above method, it appears that the tail is something 40 percent smaller than it would take to be equivalent to a Supra.

I think, since it launches so well, that a larger tail might make the Graphite 2 competitive. At least on breezy days. There's a guy in the ESL who wins with it now and then. Perhaps the same is true of your glider.

I just did a back of the envelope calculation based on the drawing on that web site. I guesstimated the angle at 112 degrees. If this is so, and my numbers are right, the v tail is severely undersized for yaw. This could be fixed with a smaller angle and a bit more area, or by adding sub fin, or by enlarging the surfaces alone. However, I think the size is adequate for pitch, so enlarging the surfaces alone may be a bit less efficient. I'm thinking the sub fin would only have to have 40 square inches. Maybe I should do this with my Graphite II.

Of course it's possible that little drawing is distorted and there's no problem. But I don't think so.

My guess is that if those first 3 questions have good answers, and the v tail is larger than it looks or gets enlarged, it will be competitive. But really it's a piece of junk and you should send it to me so you don't have to bother disposing of it. ;-p
Oct 25, 2012, 10:56 PM
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Lincoln, your post included the web site to hotgliders.com mine is the compost Hybrid like the picture except mine has large moulded V tails and the back section is the carbon Kevlar weave, so is the mh-32 airfoil good??
Oct 25, 2012, 10:58 PM
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Mark, can you tell me how well it flies?
Oct 25, 2012, 11:23 PM
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Well, I can't go by my experience with the MH 32 as I think the tail on my glider is too small. However, I know people who like it. Rumor has it that you shouldn't slow it down too much. It must not be too bad, considering how popular it is. I seem to recall that Xfoil likes it. Certainly, on those occasions when I've gotten along with it, it's flown very well.

Anthony Procino flies a Graphite 2, which has the MH32, ended up in the top half of the ESL standings this year, even though he's a sportsman. (26 out of 73, better than me) Or was, perhaps he's been bumped up for next year. I dunno. Still, given a slightly larger tail, perhaps he'd have gained a few places.
Oct 26, 2012, 02:33 AM
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Tuomo's Avatar
I would say Hybrid is a nice sport plane. Sure it can win a thermal competition, but technically it is severely outdated structurally, but also in performance and handling. Same also with Vladimirs Graphite.

We have one electrified Hybrid flying locally, actually my old plane. I doubt the wing structure can take a F3J launch, but maybe it is ok for TD where launch speed is not so critical. In tight manourvers and landings the short(ish) fuselage and small v-tail are a definite drawback.

There is no reason not fly your Hybrid in competition Buy a better plane when you start to get frustrated with its limits.
Oct 26, 2012, 09:39 AM
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Tuomo, I know the plane I have is out dated, but I believe I have somewhat a different version of this plane. The V tails are moulded, and a rather large. Also the center panel is moulded with a solid carbon spar thru out the entire span of the wing. It was designed as a
f3j competition sailplane. In its day I am sure was quite competitive.
Oct 26, 2012, 12:59 PM
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Mike, found all I was talking about on 1 page - http://www.fvk.de/Englisch/Graphite-Standart.html

As you can see, there were 3 versions - all parts can be swapped.
In fact the wings can be put on an Ava fuz.

I would bet that other planes also use similar interchangeable parts.

Hope it helps,


PS - the transparent yellow can easily vanish. Change to red transparent - at least it will look like a winner. (joke)
Oct 26, 2012, 02:38 PM
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Hey Anthony, thanks buddy, looks like the FVK stuff is still in production to this day. Wow the only differance from the Graphite and mine is my fuse is slimmer and the tails are larger and fully moulded. I am begining to think that it still might hold its own in a contest against other more modern up to date F3j ships out there costing a small 2nd mortgage on the house. Yellow HUH ? Looks pretty cool, but never paid too much attention on visibilty. Thanks for the tip, I assume my plane employs the MH-32 airfoil so I will do some research.
Thanks again Anthony
Oct 26, 2012, 08:55 PM
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Mark Miller's Avatar
The Hybrid flies great. Strong spar. Light. I have a local customer who has a Piper XL which was a piper with more span. it seems to fly great. Back a few years this plane won our club championship in the Unlimited class. Will it fly with an Aspire. No. but for the price and what it was designed to do it is a great design.


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