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Nov 05, 2017, 06:06 PM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar

It Came from the Attic: Megatech Mustang and Other Goodies

It was a rainy late fall day, and time to pack most of my 2017 flying fleet away for hibernation, leaving only a few planes to have ready for those rare nice winter flying days.

Goodnight 30-inch fighters.

Goodnight 20-inch planes.

Goodnight littie 15/16-inch guys.

Goodnight multi-engine micros.

And, goodnight micro biplanes (and triplane).

See most of you guys in the spring! However, some old stuff turned up in the attic that I figured I should really either get flying or throw away.

Remember these Super Sonic planes and their relatives? 2-channel control; throttle and differential thrust. I bought several of these, never could get one to fly. I think I gave a couple away as gifts, to boys who I'm sure never got them flying either. Doesn't seem worth trying again.

Here's a Sky Cruiser, one of many versions of the venerable Cox Warbirds. It would be possible to convert this to 2s RC, but why? My attic is full of Aircore P-51 airframes.

Now here is something else though. The Super Aviator was supposed to be the ideal RTF for beginners.

Inside, everything was overbuilt of heavy plastic. Look at those landing gear. The servos look like 80s cell phones, and it has a big old can motor.

Power was supplied by a 7-cell 600mah NiCad pack.

But model was really worth the price just for the Enjoy 3-channel radio. Well, it did have trims. Should I try to get the Super Aviator flying, or just strip it for odds and ends and toss it? Hardly seems worth it, with all the great high-wingers available now.

Now here, though, is one I really remember. I bought this at a WRAM show special when WRAM was still in White Plains. When was this thing released, like 2004? The Megatech P-51D proudly touted that it was not made of fragile foam, but rather laminated plastic that would stand up to crashes, even with its thin cambered wing. The 32" span plane was a weighty beast - mine tipped the scale at 490g without battery - and in front of the geared can-type motor was a wicked 8x8 4-blade prop.

Power was a muscular 8.4v, I'm going to say about 450mah battery, weighing a further 100g.

The Megatech RC system included a 3-channel transmitter with trims and a ratcheting throttle. Whee!

When I first got the plane back in the day, I went to the effort of drawing panel lines on it, since it had no surface detail at all, and changing the markings to Canadian. I never even considered trying to fly it, knowing I didn't have the skills. In fact, I didn't really have the skills until this year, more than 10 years later. Actually, I'm still not sure I can fly a 32-inch fighter with no ailerons. Did I dare to try this beast? I decided to at least try to set it up.

I figured it would take 3s to fly this plane, and I had a 3s 1000mah pack that weighed 90g, decently close to the original battery. I was concerned that the unknown motor and massive prop would overload the cells. I plugged the 8(!) AAs required by the transmitter, adapted the airplane's funky plug to an XT60, charged up my 3s pack and hooked it up via my watt meter so I could monitor the current drain.

The radio activated the servos fine when I plugged it in. All seemed to be well. But there is an ESC startup procedure that involves pumping the throttle up and down in a certain way, and it took a while to get the hang of it. My first clue that I had succeeded was that the current jumped to 35A even with zero throttle, and smoke poured out of the Mustang. I quickly pulled the plug and saved the battery pack, but every last wisp of magic smoke escaped from the P-51. Thus endeth the Megatech Mustang experiment! Tomorrow the trash collector will pick up an nice NIB, but well cooked, RCAF Mustang.

In hindsight maybe I should have tried a 2s, but I'm not sure the results would have been any different.

There are hardly any parts worth salvaging from the Mustang but I am keeping the two 8x8 4-blade props. They would look great on my Nicesky P-47 or F4U, except they'd probably fry anything I'd try to run them with.

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Nov 06, 2017, 12:59 AM
Oh Yeah!
makg's Avatar
Well, thanks for reminding me of Megatech. If I didn't get a HH Firebird II from a buddy after my Megatech Cosmic Flyer ended up in the garbage I probably wouldn't be in this hobby. Man I was so stoked for that thing as a kid...what junk.
Nov 06, 2017, 02:46 PM
Slow is the go!
Peter Phillipps's Avatar
Originally Posted by makg
Well, thanks for reminding me of Megatech. If I didn't get a HH Firebird II from a buddy after my Megatech Cosmic Flyer ended up in the garbage I probably wouldn't be in this hobby. Man I was so stoked for that thing as a kid...what junk.
whoops sorry my mistake pressed the wrong button, getting old??!!
Last edited by Peter Phillipps; Nov 06, 2017 at 02:49 PM. Reason: mistake sorry
Nov 06, 2017, 02:48 PM
Slow is the go!
Peter Phillipps's Avatar

Nice collection and story

Enjoyed that story, you have some fleet, squadron, wing there!

Funny how you folk in the north are getting ready for winter
and for us down under it is warming up and we should be
starting to get some good weather for flying.

Well it's not funny it happens every year actually, great story
and a great collection, Ieven showed my wife so I don't look
so bad, thanks.
Nov 06, 2017, 03:27 PM
Registered User
RNAF's Avatar
Wow amazing collection! Second picture, left of the Waco, what is it? A Tucano?
Nov 06, 2017, 03:39 PM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar
It's a Hitec Weekender Zipper, painted to look like a Tucano. Awesome little plane, recently discontinued.

Nov 06, 2017, 07:24 PM
Slow is the go!
Peter Phillipps's Avatar
Just had a second look the Buffalo Brewster and Aerocobra look
the goods, look like they are balsa and tissue, do they fly 1S?
Nov 07, 2017, 07:25 AM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar
The Brewster is a depron foamie built from paper model patterns, build thread here. It uses brushed 1s UMX gear. The P-39 is stick and tissue from the plans in the "Flying Scale Models of WWII" book and was my contribution (so far) to this thread. It is 1s brushless but a bit underpowered because I hadn't discovered the Racerstar motors when I built it.

Nov 19, 2017, 11:56 PM
Gots me a good used Hobie Hawk
Steve Corbin's Avatar
One of my favorite hobbies is taking a sow's ear and making a silk purse out of it.

Folks hereabouts will give me these planes that don't fly, or just fly poorly. I either modify them, usually by adding lightness and/or increasing wing and tail area, or sometimes just strip out all the goodies and add them to a simple balsa stick fuselage, and either make new flying surfaces or using the originals plus mods.

I recently was given one of the first diff-thrust planes to be marketed. It was made by Megatech, has elliptical planform surfaces, and flew Ok, but I put the guts on a dollar tree foam sorta/kinda Northrop N9M flying wing. Flew great, and with zero-throttle turn would spin very fast, had to do that once to escape a boomer thermal.

I wouldn't throw them away, I'd instead see them as a challenge. Many times just going lithium will get the weight down enough, but often other mods are required, as the battery is mounted up front for balance reasons and a lighter one results in tail heavy.

I was once given two Air Hogs planes that were on the same frequency. I made a real neat profile Super Connie, four engined plane, using both Rx's and batts. Climbed like a homesick angel and had excellent response to turning commands, even at high speed.

Once I get them flying well and properly trimmed I'll usually give them away to some kid that takes an interest.

If you don't want them, I'll take 'em and see that they provide some good aeronautical entertainment, for myself first but then to someone deserving. It's amazing how many kids grow up without dad, because he's absent if not physically then spiritually speaking. These boys never had anyone to take them out flying with Guillow's planes or gliders, and they really get enthusiastic when I show them what can be done.

I'll pay shipping, can't afford to offer more.
Nov 20, 2017, 08:09 AM
Registered User
RNAF's Avatar
Good story to get free aircraft!
Nov 20, 2017, 08:46 AM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar
The Sonic is gone, but I decided to try the Super Aviator and got it set up this weekend. I'm replacing the 7x1.2v 600mah Nimh pack, which weighed 150g, with a 7.4v 1000mah Lipo that weighs more like 50g. The batt compartment is right around the CG so it should just be lighter, no big trim difference. I have not done the first ground runs with the watt meter yet.

Nov 26, 2017, 09:17 PM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar
Got around to some ground test runs with the Super Aviator this weekend. Nothing blew up, and the current draw at max throttle was about 8.5A. A little on the low side, frankly; not sure how this will fly this plane, as it is rather heavy. But the wing is generous and cambered. Thinking back, my problem with the Megatech Mustang might have been that the motor had corroded and seized, because it was hard to move the prop with everything disconnected. Anyway, with nothing to lose, I look forward to trying the Super Aviator next decent flying day.

Dec 15, 2017, 04:33 PM
Gots me a good used Hobie Hawk
Steve Corbin's Avatar
If you don't get good performance from the Aviator, try adding some sheet foam (picnic plates) winglets to the wingtips. Start with about 2" tall and a 2:1 taper ratio, with the root the same size as the wing's tip chord.

Crease a bend line in them parallel to the fuselage centerline, and try different amounts of dihedral. I piece of wire glued and taped across the bend line will allow easy adjustment, and will tend to hold that angle.

These winglets will improve climb and glide, and will add dihedral, which will make the airplane more roll stable, and also will amplify rudder response.

I've used winglets lots of times to improve airplanes with a rudder, as well as diff-thrust planes. The biggest headache with diff-thrust is, IMO, the lack of directional control at high speeds, they only seem to respond well at low speeds.
Dec 15, 2017, 05:16 PM
Oh! Just love model
K5083's Avatar
Thank for your the tip, Steve.

The Aviator is currently parked, maybe for a while, as winter has really set in here. It may even be headed up to the attic for the season this weekend.

Dec 22, 2017, 10:13 PM
Treehouse is Better.
Hugo Flynow's Avatar
LOL...I had like 3 of those Syma Super Sonic planes....mine flew great! I forgot all about those.

That B17 a repainted Eflite UMX? Looks nice!

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