HobbyKing Bat 1 Land Yacht Review - RC Groups

HobbyKing Bat 1 Land Yacht Review

I first saw the Bat 1 at the HobbyKing electric line tent at Joe Nall. I like unusual r/c things so it peaked my interest...

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Introduction

I first saw the Bat 1 at the HobbyKing electric line tent at Joe Nall. I like unusual r/c things so it peaked my interest. It's called the Bat 1 because the base looks like a baseball bat that's been cut in half. It's pretty much a sailboat with 3 wheels and you use the wind to power it. I used to do some kite buggying with a trike and I've played with a few sailboats here and there so I was excited to get this review unit and get it out on the pavement to see how fun it is.

What's in the Box

When you open the box there isn't much there. You'll see the baseball bat main frame, a bag with some hardware and wheels, the main sail, the mast and axel, the instruction manual, and the radio box. It all appeared to be in great shape and ready for final assembly.

Assembly

The manual walks you through the assembly for the kit version, so most of that work is already done on this ARR version. I started by putting the two mast sections together with a dab of CA glue. Then you can slide the sail onto it and secure the sail to the top plate with a provided zip tie. The mast just drops into the slot on the fuse. Next you can slide the main sheet tube on the bottom of the sail. It is secured with a rubber band at the rear and a toothpick near the main mast.

The next step was to install the batteries in the carrier for the receiver and slide the sheet tube line through the hole in the middle. With the radio on and connected to the receiver you need to pull the trigger to make the line tight. Mark the line 1/2" from where it exits the tube and tie a double knot there I added a washer for extra security. Now when you pull the trigger it will take in the line and pull the sail taught. When you release the trigger it relaxes the line and lets the sail out some and when you push the trigger forward it lets the sail out even more. That's all there is to it. Make sure the steering works and head on out to the field.

Sailing

I'm not an expert sailor, but the basics are pretty easy. You want to point the nose perpendicular to the wind direction. You won't be traveling very far directly upwind or downwind so make sure to go sideways until you need to turn. Most of the time you want to leave the sail in the neutral position which gives it some slack and allows the wind to catch the sail and propel the yacht forward. You can pull the trigger to tighten the sail and gain a little more speed, and push the trigger to let the sail out and slow it down. You can tack into the wind in a zig zag pattern so you can actually travel up and down the wind direction at an angle. You can also turn either into the wind or downwind, the sail will automatically move when the wind hits it and keep you moving. It's pretty easy to do and the most important part is to have some wind. The best places will be wide open parking lots or beaches with a smooth laminar wind flow.

You'll want to be careful in heavier winds that you don't tip it over. During turns in high winds, you can let the sail out during the turn to prevent this. If you pull the trigger in a stiff wind you can get up on two wheels, but you need to manage it carefully or you will be walking. We had a blast with ours at the flying field on the runway. The wind was gusting, so it was difficult to be consistently fast, but I saw enough bursts of speed to be really excited about it.

Photos

Video

Conclusion

The Bat 1 is unique and easy to use and being only a little over the $100 mark, it's certainly a fun affordable item to have. If you have the space to run it, it's a blast and two or more buddies with one will make for some fun racing. Everything worked out of the box and I found no issues with assembly or during use. It looks cool and will certainly draw a crowd wherever you take it.

Pros

  • Wind powered
  • Ball bearing wheels are smooth
  • Well designed
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Can be awkward to transport (Edit, you can remove the mast for smaller vehicles)

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Jul 17, 2015, 03:08 PM
Registered User
Nice review, just assembling mine now: Model Boat Mayhem

..... I was wondering what the small rubber band and toothpick were for!!!!

Martrin
Jul 17, 2015, 03:41 PM
Ahhgh! Not ANOTHER new plane!
SoCalBobS's Avatar

Just a tip..


Got mine recently. Regarding the "awkward to transport" review observation, there is a way to remove the mast easily. The main sheet (string that controls the boom) can slip in and out through the hole in the boom. Slip it out, and the mast can be removed from the hull. There was clear tape on one end of my mast. If you use that end in the hole, it gives a good friction fit.

Fun toy!
Jul 17, 2015, 06:33 PM
Registered User
Condor84's Avatar
THAT is cool. My father and I always talked about building a full scale ice/land yacht when I was a kid, and making it convertible so it could be used winter on the lake or summer in the fields. Now that we both live in Florida, we've been thinking of building one to run up and down the beach. But THIS RC version looks like it could be just as much fun.
Jul 20, 2015, 09:39 AM
Rhinebeck CD-99,00,01,02
Tom Smith's Avatar
I raced a DN ice boat in NY for several years. No ice here in NC so this model looks like a ton of fun in a parking lot or ball field. Can it be bought without the transmitter? Tom
Jul 20, 2015, 09:53 AM
RCG Admin
Jason Cole's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Smith
I raced a DN ice boat in NY for several years. No ice here in NC so this model looks like a ton of fun in a parking lot or ball field. Can it be bought without the transmitter? Tom
Yes you can buy the kit version here http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...arehouse_.html

Or the Plug and Play version here http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...arehouse_.html
Jul 20, 2015, 11:10 AM
Rhinebeck CD-99,00,01,02
Tom Smith's Avatar
Thanks Jason, I just might order one of these. Tom
Jul 22, 2015, 10:16 PM
Lower AL
SeeMeDo's Avatar
Just finished putting mine together, I have a land yacht that I built but on our last move they lost my mast and I haven't replaced it yet.
Do you disconnect the battery pack or is the switch good enough to keep from draining the battery pack?
Now when I bring the Bat 1 the winds will be nice and clam for flying
Jeff.......................
Jul 23, 2015, 12:49 AM
Registered User

Bat-1 !


I just finished building 2 Bats - 1 for me, the other for a friend. A very nice kit and well designed land yacht! A lot of fun to sail. It really comes to life when the wind picks up.
The main wheel nuts seemed to be threaded wrong. The nuts would not go on straight and would rub on the outer race of the wheel bearing. :madr So watch out for that.
Everything else is great.
My 25 year old daughter hates everything RC, but she really enjoyed sailing the Bat-1,
Jul 23, 2015, 07:43 AM
Rhinebeck CD-99,00,01,02
Tom Smith's Avatar
SeeMeDo, I would recommend disconnecting the battery. A radio on off switch will still allow current to be drawn from the batteries and in time will totally discharge them. Not to bad if you are using NiCads or NiMh cells, but it will ruin a Lipo.
Jul 23, 2015, 06:58 PM
Lower AL
SeeMeDo's Avatar
Took the bat to work for a few swings at lunch which was suppose to be winds 7 to 9 mph, but of course it was spotty and variable but I got enough zipping around to tell that this is going to fun run around.
Jeff....................

The batteries are 4 AAs and I'm going to try the switch, all my flashlights have switches and they work so we'll see.
Jeff......................
Jul 23, 2015, 07:51 PM
Rhinebeck CD-99,00,01,02
Tom Smith's Avatar
My bad, I was thinking this has a speed controller in it with bec. Duh! It's a sail boat on wheels.
Jul 23, 2015, 08:55 PM
RCG Admin
Jason Cole's Avatar
Yeah the switch is fine to use.
Jul 24, 2015, 02:23 PM
Lower AL
SeeMeDo's Avatar
This is going to work great making sure that the winds will be light and variable so we can get in some good flying. Second day of using the wind killer at lunch, going to really be put to the test this weekend
Have tuning to do on the main sheet, need to make it a little tighter.
Jeff.....................
Jul 26, 2015, 05:23 PM
Lower AL
SeeMeDo's Avatar
Batter up, put the Bat 1 through the paces today, Mobius on Hat, Top of Mast, Top of battery hatch, and right before the mast.
Winds 7mph to over 10, had fun didn't even realize two hours had passed.
Hobby King Bat1 Toth 26Jul15 (16 min 23 sec)

Jeff...................


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