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Jul 06, 2017, 11:23 AM
SILURIA / UK
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Finwing Traveller V2 T-Tail


My feedback from testing:

I paid for this plane myself. Took a gamble as one of the early backers.
Have no allegiance or pressure for positive review from FinWing and it is my first plane from them. Consider this unbiased.

Summary:
  • It’s a great looking and well thought out plane! I am happy with the purchase.
  • The v2 T tail looks awesome and works well.
  • It is VERY quiet.
  • It is a great kit to build. Good access, simple and straightforward. A real bonus is being able to install all gear, motors etc. and carry out testing without tail or wings attached.
  • It folds down.. probably why your reading this - right! Well I found just chunking in the car with the wings detached a huge positive.
  • Nice to launch – good hand width and thoughtfully placed grip areas.
  • Well positioned and thought out mounting for camera options.
  • Gyro stabilisation is well worth adding. It is a small model and this helps.
  • Quite agile – can bank and turn quite well.
  • This will be a regular flier and I would buy from FinWing again.
  • Over 50 minutes total fly time on first battery. Surprising because I wasn’t trying for any duration records.

Negatives:
  • I needed a 4s5200 to achieve balance. Really I would prefer to fly this with 3s 4000 and expected to get balance range from a 3s 3000 upwards. This surprised me – although I have to point out I do not have the weight of a HD camera recording up front which most probably do.

Flying characteristics:
  • Once balanced and set up I found it to have decent flying characteristics. 8/10.
  • Stalls are quite predictable with a rearward balance point. When too far forward it drops a wing into a spin. Recovers after enough airspeed built up.
  • Not a first model. Definitely need prior flying experience.
  • It benefits from keeping the speed up. It is not a glider style floater. To be expected for size / design.
  • Low speed handling is about typical. With gyro its significantly better.
  • Rudder does make turns a little sweeter but need a lot of rudder input.
  • Launches are straightforward. A positive level throw as per manual.
  • Landings are fine. Without gyro stabilisation I found needed a faster landing to avoid wing dropping.
  • Haven’t done any duration testing, but exceeded 30 mins on one flight with a lot of fast banking and climbing. Probably 45 mins is easily achieved with a 5000maH
  • Speed range is good.

Expectations v reality:
  • Have to think about this because expectations v reality are often different.
  • Looks like a Twinstar but a bit smaller. My initial thoughts were it would similar. But thinking a bit more…
  • It’s not a lightly loaded similar size glider.
  • Fairly heavily loaded with FPV gear.
  • So I expected.. mild performance, small model fairly and responsive.
  • Its slippery design means it’s actually significantly faster than I expected. Could be mildly aerobatic with some big rates.
  • It is much quieter than I expected. This is great for me

Dive test
  • Up high, no throttle and put into a steep dive. A very very slight increase in dive over time with no gyro. A hint of up trim to solve.

Stall test
  • With no gyro nose up and back off throttle.
  • Recommended balance point it dropped a wing and entered a spin. Predictable and recovered with some airspeed. Not unusual
  • With balance point moved rearward I didn’t get it to spin. The nose. Couldn’t fault that.
  • Need more flying time to determine longer term opinion on low speed stall, but I’m happy with this so far.

Build recommendations:
  • It a nice kit to build. Quite easy. I enjoyed this one.
  • Ensure tail is fitted properly and Leading / Rear edge of tail are at same height (L and R in manual)
  • I will keep recommended balance point and fly with gyro stabilisation on at all times.
  • Don’t bother fitting rudder servo and leave rudder uncut.
  • Use some bobbles for easier hand balancing.
  • Built to the manual spec, but with the balance point a few mm back from recommended I found it needed hardly any trim.
  • I did bend some of the hinges a little to get a tighter more accurate fit.

Kit:
  • I opted for EPO. Foam quality seems comparable to others like Skywalker. Maybe a hint softer. I would be tempted to go for EPP for next purchase as I am starting to like that more.
  • The overall quality is very good. You should not be disappointed.
  • The control linkage hardware is a bit different. Quite large and metal so looks a bit dated at first. The hinges have a LOT of play in them and I thought this would be an issue however when the plane is all fitted together, it is pretty good. Better than many other kits I’ve put together.
  • As an general comment - as this is a fold down kit I was expecting some play in the controls etc. Wow, it’s really quite tight when together. Better than some normal kits I have purchased.
  • A lot of thought has gone into this kit. Some good designs to get around the challenges of a fold up plane. Kudos to designers…. Impressed.

One minor note - the pushrods were missing so not sure what they were like. I didn’t bother contacting FinWing as quicker for me to buy some rods and a Z bend tool locally. Haven’t seen any other comments so maybe I was just unlucky or they fell out of box in transit.

COG/⁠Balance point:
  • First flights were with balance on the hole as per the manual.
  • I found this perfect when flying with gyro stabilisation on.
  • I usually move mine back a bit from recommended with a stabilised plane so this is a first.
  • With no stabilisation on it felt not entirely locked in / oversensitive and a little uncontrollable at times. Like flying with balance point too far forward.
  • I moved balance point to the rear edge of the rectangle with balance point marker. Much more controllable. Huge improvement.
  • I am not using this for a filming ship so no upfront HD camera weight although I do have a pan/tilt. I had to put a 4s 5200 in to achieve balance. This surprised me somewhat. I am tempted to buy another tail and leave out the servo.

Motor thrust angle:
  • I found this perfect. Increasing throttle made no change in attitude. No pitching either way.
  • I did find that tightening up the motor compresses the foam so I needed to look from above to get horizontal alignment correct.

Modifications:
  • Shaved some foam of the top and add a mounting plate for the VTX.
  • Cut channel for Motor wires with a Dremel.
  • Future mod might be an internal mounting plate for components. 2nd builds always come out better!

Rudder
  • It is small and requires HUGE amounts to have any impact. To be fair designer has made it long and attempt to give it more usability as it is limited in height.
  • It does help for nice co-⁠ordinated turns.
  • Recommend considering not using it and save weight in the tail. If you do, put some negative expo to make it usable.

Support:
  • FinWing support is good. Replied to every email.
  • Helpful and concise.
  • Forum interaction and addressing feedback is very good.

Motor: Sunnysky X2207S 2100kv
ESC: Flycolor 30
FC: RMRC DODO running iNav 1.7.1
OSD: VirtualPilot Aeromax with MWOSD ( the best  )
Pan/⁠Tilt: Hobbyking with 180 pan and 90 tilt
GPS: Ublox M8
Antenna Tracker: Skylark
RC: Scherrer UHF
VTX: IRC 5.8G
Camera: Runcam swift
Battery: Multistar 4s 5200
Props: 6045 bullnose. Ordered APC 6*4 would not fit
Servo: Tower Pro MG90

Design improvements for consideration:
  • Channel to put motor cables in wing.
  • Balance with smaller battery

FPV downlink recording...
WARNING: As I use a headtracker it might be hard to watch. But its great fun to fly with

Finwing Traveller V2 (3 min 19 sec)
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Jan 24, 2018, 03:00 PM
Registered User
nice thanks for the writeup. im building the traveller now. i was considering using the rudder but if its as useless as you say maybe ill build it withought the rudder and add it in later if i feel i need it.


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