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Oct 28, 2019, 11:27 AM
kiwi power!
jameschen072's Avatar
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Mini-Review

Volantex 761-5 P-51D (A.k.a. Eachine P-51) Review- mind blown!


Volantex 761-5 P-51D Review- mind blown!


Before we begin

I’ve always loved the idea of a micro warbird- one that’s got scale looks, isn’t too hard to fly and doesn’t break the bank. Over the years, I’ve purchased quite a few, but most were somewhat disappointing in that they were either fragile, hard to fly, expensive or a combination of the three (favorites: UMX Habu, Rage Staggerwing, Firelands WWI Biplanes).
When Volantex told me that they were planning on making a micro P-51D, I was skeptical. It’s a tall order to make a micro that flies well, let alone their goal of making it robust and affordable.
I’d like to thank Volantex for sending me the review unit and for supporting my unbiased reviews. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please do let me know!

From the hangar

The P-51D is pre-painted to represent “Bunnie”, a Mustang that was flown by flight leader Capt. Roscoe Brown of the 332nd fighter group- better known as the Tuskegee airmen. Captain Brown actually shot down a ME-262 jet while piloting his P-51! Let me lead you down the YouTube rabbit hole I’m in right now with Capt. Brown’s interview: Pre-built from the factory, the P-51D has everything you need to get flying (other than 4x”AA” batteries for the transmitter). Landing gears are included if you choose to take off and land on a smooth surface. The landing gear slots into a plastic mount and is secured using an included screw.
The fuselage halves are glued together with the electronics sandwiched in-between. Meaning once a component fails then the aircraft pretty much has to be thrown away or has to go through major surgery. The all-in-one board features two built in servos and an independent servo controlling the aileron surfaces (5-wire servos).
As a ready to fly aircraft, the P51 comes with a proprietary transmitter that shares its protocol with the Ranger 600 that I reviewed a couple months earlier. This new transmitter is slightly different though, as it no longer features a dummy antenna and it now has an automatic stunt button on the left shoulder.
A 1S 3.7V 350mAh lipo flight battery is included with the aircraft, giving more than 8 minutes of mixed flying time for my particular unit. A USB charger is included with the aircraft and will charge the battery in roughly half an hour.
A well-written manual completes the package, answering most of the questions I had with the functionality of the P-51.
The propeller is a quick-release unit that detaches if the aircraft comes into contact with the ground. This is a safety feature that has worked flawlessly for me. Just remember to buy extra props as they may be hard to find if lost in grass.

In the cockpit

The included transmitter is a 4-channel unit, there are two shoulder switches that provide extra functions unique to Volantex micros.
On the left shoulder, this button activates auto-aerobatics. Press it once and the transmitter will start to beep, signifying that the aerobatics mode is on standby; push the aileron stick to the left or right for an automatic roll, or pull back on the elevator for an automatic loop (I’ve found that only gentle inputs result in the automatic roll or loop- aggressive inputs disengages the function).
On the right shoulder, a three-position toggle controls the flight mode. Both the beginner and “midd” modes return the aircraft to level flight whenever the sticks are at their neutral positions. The bank angle is limited at different levels with these two modes (small bank angle for the beginner mode and relatively large bank angle for “midd”).
Curiously, you’re still able to loop the aircraft in midd mode.
The third position, expert mode, allows the pilot to fly the aircraft without any gyro/accelerometer intervention.
Bugs
A few electronic bugs were found in flying the P51- one being that the aircraft does not cut power to the motor when the radio signal is lost (this could potentially lead to a fly-away) and with some lower quality third party batteries, the aircraft prematurely reaches LVC- cutting power to the motor.

Flight characteristics


Conditions on the day of the first flight were quite windy. I installed the battery and turned on the transmitter, the aircraft paired to the transmitter automatically. I cycled the throttle once and the motor was armed. With the nose pointing into the wind, the transmitter under midd mode, I increased the throttle and the aircraft lifted into the air with ease.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the P51 has ample power, flying at near brushless speeds and close-to 1:1 thrust-to-weight ratio. There wasn’t a lot of noise from the gearing or the propeller, the P51 moved quietly and swiftly through the air.
The control surfaces do have a bit of authority and allow very smooth flight characteristics in either gyro modes, though both rudder and aileron inputs are required for tighter maneuvers.
Unlike many micros, this micro P-51 can slow way down without stalling. Make sure that some momentum is carried through in turns as with other low-winged aircraft and you’ll be just fine.

The landing gear is pretty scale in length when compared to the wing-chord, resulting in very little prop-clearance, I therefore recommend flying this aircraft without the landing gear as this also helps reduce drag.

Aerobatics
Basic aerobatics like loops, rolls, stall turns and inverted flight can be performed with the gyro off- but don’t expect precision aerobatics as the 5 wire servos do not react at the speed or precision that 3 wire servos provide.


Durability
We have about 15 of these in our club and carry out weekly dogfight sessions- haven’t put one out of service yet!
The motor on a couple aircraft did move from its housing after crashing, a dab of CA on the motor mount should prevent this.
In a particularly intense dogfight, my P-51 had its left wing torn off after I misjudged the altitude and banked at full speed (oops!), this was fixed with CA and some fiber tape- there seems to be no difference in flight performance after the fix.

Conclusion

This is one of my favorite R/C products, ever! The P-51D is sent out on daily sorties whether it’s an impromptu dogfight with one of my mates or just an evening patrol session. Volantex has truly found a sweet spot between scale looks, durability, price and performance with the P-51D.


I’d like to thank Volantex again for sending the P-51D for review. I’ve purchased another two since then! If you’d like to purchase the P-51D, please visit the links below:
Banggood Eachine P51
Volantex 761-5

*Note: Affiliated link

Video review (Flight footage starts 06:10):
Volantex V761-5 Micro Mustang review (9 min 51 sec)


Pros and Cons
Pros
+ Super durable
+ Scale looks
+ 4 channels with auto-stunt mode
+ Predictable flight characteristics
+ Long flight times
+ Cost

Cons
- 5 wire servos
- Electronic bugs (feedback given to the factory)
- Hard to service
- Low prop-clearance= poor ground handling characteristics
Last edited by jameschen072; Oct 14, 2020 at 11:21 AM.
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Oct 28, 2019, 03:04 PM
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jimjim06's Avatar
Sounds like Volantex has another great plane on the market!

Thanks for the review.

Tommy
Oct 28, 2019, 05:59 PM
Fan of just about anything RC
SoloProFan's Avatar
Seems identical to Eachine P51, also just released. Must be a rebrand, it really seems identical. I can confirm it flies pretty fast, but can also fly slow, at least in straight passes. Made the maiden flight with mine today, it felt a bit prone to lift the nose, might be a little tail heavy or need a few clicks down trim on elevator. But overall, even for someone with less experience with fixed wing, like me, it felt good. If it wasn't close to dusk, and getting harder to track the small plane, I might have been able to try some more acro than loopings and a few roll attempts.
Latest blog entry: For the love of the hobby!
Oct 28, 2019, 07:15 PM
kiwi power!
jameschen072's Avatar
Thread OP
@jimjim06, Thanks Tommy! I think they will do very well with the P51... and I heard they've a few more warbirds on the way!

@SoloProFan, Great seeing you here old friend! I didn't know that Eachine sold the aircraft too, did some research and it does look to be a rebrand of the Volantex plane indeed. Definitely adjust the linkages or trim the aircraft if it has some nose up tendencies, mine seem to be ok but I did see variations in length of the linkages between aircraft, so some do require a bit of trimming, especially in expert mode.
Keep flying man!
Oct 29, 2019, 12:17 AM
Fan of just about anything RC
SoloProFan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameschen072

@SoloProFan, Great seeing you here old friend! I didn't know that Eachine sold the aircraft too, did some research and it does look to be a rebrand of the Volantex plane indeed. Definitely adjust the linkages or trim the aircraft if it has some nose up tendencies, mine seem to be ok but I did see variations in length of the linkages between aircraft, so some do require a bit of trimming, especially in expert mode.
Keep flying man!

Likewise, it's been a while, but it's hard to get rid of me, lol.

I'll try a few clicks down trim first. I followed the manual putting it in expert mode, and then center the trims, but maybe on elevator you should just trim in the air. It does go nicely straight with some throttle, so it appears nothing is warped or so.

I just picked up fixed wing again recently after last summer I had some fun with the XK A800, which, at least on mine, lacks a bit of power to move into the typical Dutch breeze that we often have here. But the Omphobby S720, that I am reviewing for Makerfire (thread also in this subforum) does much better, and due to being able to remove wings and hor stabilizer, isn't harder to bring along than a smaller plane. And Banggood unexpectedly selected me to review the Eachine Mustang.


More warbirds coming? I hope there is a spitfire in the making, and that they will do it justice. It's been a kid's dream to fly an RC Spitfire, but I needed a bit of a safety net to feel confident enough to fly a low wing 4ch plane. These new flight controllers, allowing to step up from full stabilization to none, with in this case, an intermediate in between step, are just what I need for that.
Latest blog entry: For the love of the hobby!
Oct 29, 2019, 03:26 AM
Registered User
Pixelpeter's Avatar
Always wanted a small RC warbird, and this Mustang might just be what the doctor ordered

BTW that Eachine Mustang is (quite a bit) cheaper now over at BG as it's on sale.

@ SoloProFan: second that wish for a Spitfire!
Oct 30, 2019, 01:27 AM
Fan of just about anything RC
SoloProFan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pixelpeter
Always wanted a small RC warbird, and this Mustang might just be what the doctor ordered

BTW that Eachine Mustang is (quite a bit) cheaper now over at BG as it's on sale.

@ SoloProFan: second that wish for a Spitfire!

Now you made me buy a "back up plane", you dirty RC addict enabler!

I had not kept track of any deals, after getting a "deal overload" in the Banggood subforum.


Anyway, here's my work in progress single posting review: https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...7&postcount=29


I hope it uses a deviated protocol, some expo on aileron would help in acro mode. Reducing the throws as OP mentioned should work too, but will also reduce roll rate. With expo you can have more control around center stick, and still have full roll rate if needed.
Latest blog entry: For the love of the hobby!
Oct 30, 2019, 03:54 AM
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Pixelpeter's Avatar
You're very welcome!
Oct 30, 2019, 10:18 PM
kiwi power!
jameschen072's Avatar
Thread OP
@SoloProFan Unfortunately given the current circumstances where the protocol isn't deviated, changing the pushrod location on the control horn is probably the only thing we can do. I'd love for the protocol to be deviated!
Oct 31, 2019, 12:17 AM
Fan of just about anything RC
SoloProFan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameschen072
@SoloProFan Unfortunately given the current circumstances where the protocol isn't deviated, changing the pushrod location on the control horn is probably the only thing we can do. I'd love for the protocol to be deviated!

I think I'm going to move the push rod on the ailerons too. I'm starting to fly longer times in acro mode, and then the roll is indeed a bit touchy.

Btw, it seems you have some pictures double uploaded on your first message?
Latest blog entry: For the love of the hobby!
Oct 31, 2019, 10:36 AM
kiwi power!
jameschen072's Avatar
Thread OP
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoloProFan
I think I'm going to move the push rod on the ailerons too. I'm starting to fly longer times in acro mode, and then the roll is indeed a bit touchy.

Btw, it seems you have some pictures double uploaded on your first message?
Thanks for the heads up man, I appreciate it and will look through the photos.

I think I'm going to try and convince the factory to release their protocol as they do sell the bnf version of this aircraft (and the J3 cub too), I think if they deviated the protocol they'd a) sell a lot more planes and b) allow mode 1 pilots to fly... and we can adjust our planes!

Do you know anyone from the Deviation team? Maybe we could work together to make this happen haha
Oct 31, 2019, 10:38 AM
Fan of just about anything RC
SoloProFan's Avatar
It seems that some work has been done on the Volantex 3ch planes: https://www.deviationtx.com/forum/pr...tocol?start=60
Latest blog entry: For the love of the hobby!
Oct 31, 2019, 07:57 PM
Registered User
I like this plane, in fact it's amazing, but like Solo and Peter would LOVE a Spitfire. James, can you persuade Volantex to do one? I think it would be a big seller - precisely because it's NOT done nearly as often as the P-51D.
Oct 31, 2019, 09:28 PM
Registered User
Ricomon's Avatar
I'd love a Bf109 or FW190, myself. ...although I'm happy to get a P-51. I've been flying R/C for fifty years, and I've had many warbirds, but this will be my first Mustang.

Rick
Nov 01, 2019, 09:09 AM
kiwi power!
jameschen072's Avatar
Thread OP
@1auriec (hello old friend!! How have you been??) @Ricomon, I think there are plans to do the Spitfire eventually but given the wing shape and size, I think they have a few engineering hurdles to overcome!
I saw the prototype for the next plane... looks nice (but I still prefer the P51, perhaps a fully painted one would change my mind).

Take a guess at what it is: Iconic aircraft with a big radial engine... pacific theater

Hopefully that isn't giving too much away!


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