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Sep 14, 2016, 11:18 AM
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XK Innovations DHC-2 A600

The de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver was designed post WWII with short takeoff and landing (STOL) ability. It was targeted for the civilian market and the demands for easy cargo loading features. The XK Innovations A600 model of this plane is available at Gearbest. I appreciate Gearbest giving me a chance to review this beautiful model.

The dedicated thread for this plane is at:

The package arrived intact and I proceeded with the unboxing. The following packaging suggestions are relevant to internal packaging and so for XK rather than Gearbest. In my opinion, it is best to not have the lipo be loose in the package - although, it may have just been my lipo that was unsecured and others may not have experienced the same packaging. While the space within which the lipo was stored was small, it was still loose. Not that a 300 mAh would have the ability to cause much damage from impact but it is a point I felt important enough to share.

Another point to note is that I did not feel comfortable about the placement of the charger's power supply - the charger itself seemed more securely held in place than the power supply which could, in my opinion, easily have slipped around in the box. Likely me being paranoid but something I felt I should point out regarding XK's packaging.
The other components were sufficiently secure and I appreciate the roomy space for the empennage.

Two points stuck with me during assembly - the assembly is easy and everything fits flush. While these may be minor points for others, they hold significance for me. I went through my beginner years in this hobby, paying for 1st and 2nd plane trainers from pricier, more established brands, such as the venerable HZ Super Cub and the Flyzone Sensei. Components such as the wing struts, battery compartment, LG, did not fit flush for me on those planes. On this plane, everything fits easily, without a struggle and without the worry that I may break something while fitting parts. And they all sit flush, which didn't make me worry about what I had done wrong or have a Homer Simpson moment. Given how inexpensive it is, I wish I had something like this rather than the premium I paid for my name-brand trainers - XK did a very good job on this.

A final point I have is on the manual. I appreciate the extensive use of pictorial guidance and I feel it is very beneficial to all pilots, beginner to advanced. Outside of that, there were several inaccuracies that should have been corrected prior to publishing. For example, on page 4, the Mode 2 right stick is labeled as Throttle/Aileron when it should be Elevator/Aileron. On page 7, the manual notes to turn off the transmitter when adjusting the pushrods when in fact the plane should be disconnected from the lipo when adjusting the pushrods. On page 8, the first row of the pictorials refers to the rudder when it should refer to the elevator. Such inaccuracies do not matter for an advanced plane but for a beginner plane, they do.

I like the backlit transmitter screen - made it easier to see the screen even though that is something I don't do myself when flying. While I'm used to my larger TXs, it was still easy to hold and operate.

Another topic to note is that the battery hatch is loosely secured. XK didn't anticipate the weight of the 300mAh being significant enough to dislodge the hatch on landing - my landings aren't great but I'm sure many beginners will dislodge this hatch, easily.

A minor point of concern was that stabilization was completely non-functional on my plane (3D & 6G) - a QC note to XK. While I prefer not having stabilization, I can see this to be a valuable teaching tool for beginners. I tried resetting my gyro according to the manual and the blue light kept blinking and nothing else happened. Gearbest offered to replace the plane but I chose to just go ahead with the review. To me, the flight characteristics without stabilization will reveal the appropriateness as a trainer airframe.

The flight was a pleasure. I flew in ~10mph winds while it was overcast and there was a very sporadic drizzle. The full scale plane's STOL attributes seemed exemplified in the takeoff and landing of the model. I didn't find the need for sensitive rudder control during takeoff, which to me is a thumbs up for a beginner plane. Landing was also quite effortless with not much flaring required, another thumbs up. In the air, the plane has a lot of power and flew effortlessly in the wind. It can be slowed down to a crawl and doesn't get kicked about even at low speeds. Pitch and Yaw sensitivity would be acceptable for many beginners but the Roll sensitivity was a bit high, likely due to the large surface area of the ailerons.

XK DHC-2 A600 from Gearbest (4 min 1 sec)

I cannot with certainty say that this would be a good first plane without any stabilization. While I haven't had the opportunity to crash it yet, the foam seems very flexible and durable. The flight attributes mentioned earlier are also a big plus.

However, while throttle control is easy, the plane does have a lot of power - to me, that may get a beginner in trouble. My biggest concern is the aileron sensitivity. Taking all this into account, it is definitely a great second plane. If I could ignore the aileron sensitivity, it may be a great first plane, even without stabilization.
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Sep 17, 2016, 06:47 AM
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