Horizon Hobby E-flite UMX Turbo Timber Review

Jason Cole takes the UMX Turbo Timber for a spin and provides his thoughts below in the RCGroups review.

Splash

Introduction

Wingspan: 27.6 in (700mm)
Length: 19 in (483mm)
Flying Weight: 4.8 oz (124g)
Motor: 180BL
Prop Size: 3-blade 4.7 x 2.75 in (120 x 70mm)
Battery: 2S 280mAh w/JST-PH connector sold separately
Price: $139.99
Available at: Horizon Hobby

E-flite's UMX Turbo Timber is a tiny STOL style RC airplane that has flaps, ailerons, rudder and elevator. It's rare to see a plane this small offer flaps, but that's one of the things that makes this plane so popular.

The UMX Turbo Timber builds on the success of the standard version and they've updated more than just a longer nose and different trim scheme. I was excited to see what this little plane has to offer so let's dig right in and check it out.

Video

What's in the Box

For such a small plane, that box appears relatively larger than you would imagine making it a little bulkier to travel with, but it's still the best way to safely transport the plane. The box measures out to 25" x 25.25" x 7" and it has the traditional carry handle and flip open lid making it easy to carry and get inside when you are ready to fly. The plane is well protected inside with a single piece foam cover. The UMX Turbo Timber comes already built and ready to install your battery and bind to your Spektrum radio. Also inside are some extra pieces like the optional leading edge slats, Velcro and the mounting hardware for the optional float set. Here's a look at some photos of everything fresh out of the box.

Other Items Included for Review

Horizon also sent me a few of the recommended E-flite 2S 280mAh batteries and the Charger Plug Adapter for use in the review.

Assembly

There really isn't much to do here to get it ready to fly. If you want to use the leading edge slats, you can use some foam safe CA glue to install them. I prefer to fly without them so I did not install them on the plane. The only other thing to do is read the manual and set up your radio according to the instructions, charge your battery and bind the plane to your radio. Once bound, check all your control surfaces to make sure they are working in the correct direction. I noticed the elevator neutral position was not centered properly so I use a pair of pliers to bend the U shape in the wire closer to center the elevator. This process is documented in the manual. Now we are ready to fly!

Flying

Now for the fun part because this is possibly the best flying UMX plane you can buy right now! All flights during this review were made with E-flite 2S 280mAH lipo batteries. The manual says to set a 6 minute timer and that will work for mixed flying with the occasional full throttle blast. With heavy use of the throttle stick, you'll want to put a 5 minute timer to keep from hitting the low voltage cut off.

Take Offs

There are many ways to get the UMX Turbo Timber into the air. You can hand launch it with just a small forward toss, you can rollout on a paved runway, street or sidewalk, you can even rollout on small very low cut grass. Heck you could take off from a park bench if you wanted. With the flaps up, it doesn't take much space to leap into the sky and with the flaps down, you can get it airborne in just about the length of the fuselage. I also enjoyed doing slower more scale like take offs. The plane tracks well and makes it easy and comfortable for any type of take off you want to try.

Basics

Flying around feels good and the the AS3X makes this plane feel larger than it is. The handling is precise, but the plane is also stable even in some wind. The rudder is effective and useful, but not necessary if you haven't developed left thumb skills yet.

The flaps are very effective at slowing the plane down and you can get it to fly extremely slow. I did have to add in some down elevator mix with the flaps to prevent it from pitching up so be aware of that if you are not using SAFE Select. I also slowed down the movement of the flaps. Touch and goes are great fun and you can even do one wheel versions. It's a blast to fly even just doing the basics of taking off, flying a pattern and landing.

Aerobatics

If you like acro, you will not be disappointed. For starters, the UMX Turbo Timber's upgraded motor has tremendous power when you want it. It climbs out vertically even out of a hover and the straight line speeds are pretty quick for such a small plane. It does point rolls, knife edge, snaps and even side slips. I suggest to mechanically increase the control throws on the elevator and rudder by moving the control rod in closer to the hinge line by a hole or two to make sure you have enough throw for hovering and aggressive maneuvers. You can always add in dual rates to lower the throws for normal flying. You can experiment with it to see what you like best.

Landings

Getting back on the ground is just as fun as getting in the air. You can two point, one point or three point the touchdown with or without flaps. With a little bit of wind and full flaps, you can elevator it straight down to landing with no forward movement over the ground, it's pretty fun! The surfaces provide plenty of control authority even when slowing down to land, making it an easy affair to do safely.

SAFE Select

SAFE Select is awesome for new pilots and you can set it up on a switch to turn it on or off. With SAFE Select on, the UMX Turbo Timber will self-level in flight when you return the control sticks to the neutral position. It keeps the plane level and flying straight until you make it turn. It also limits the bank and pitch angles so that you can't roll it over or get it in too steep of a dive or climb. It makes the plane well, safe to fly. One criticism I've had of SAFE Select in the past, was that it could be too effective and limit the controls so much that if you were not flying in a large enough space, you could get into trouble with nearby obstacles. I'm happy to report that is not the case with this one. I feel they programmed in just the right amount of bank angle to be plenty safe, but also allow the plane ample control to fly in small spaces. I was able to fly with SAFE Select on in a gym with no issues.

Indoors

Yes you can fly this UMX plane indoors. I took it to a local full size basketball court gym and had a blast. It's plenty maneuverable to have fun and do more than just lazy circles. You can climb and do stall turns, rolls, loops, inverted and whatever else you'd like. I really enjoyed doing one-wheel touch and goes and driving it around on one wheel for a full lap before taking back off. The flaps really let you slow it down inside if you need to, the speed range available certainly helps to keep things interesting.

Photos

Conclusion

I said it earlier, but this one of the best UMX planes you can buy right now. With the standard UMX Timber no longer being available, this Turbo version is a worthy successor with more power and great looks. The updates are solid with the better landing gear and more power. The ability to fly such a small plane with varying conditions and styles should appeal to just about anyone. You want an indoor plane, done. You want a high performance aerobatic plane, done. You want a float plane, get the float set and done. You want a STOL take off from a park bench, done. You want an easy to fly trainer, put it in SAFE Select mode and done. You want to fly in low light or even at night, done! I'm really not sure what else you could want. The only complaints I really have is that photo in the manual for taking off the battery hatch, makes it look like you pull up from the back when you really need to pull from the front of the canopy first. The only mods, if you can call them that, I did was to use better velcro for securing the battery and increasing the the throws on the Rudder and Elevator. I moved the pushed rod in 1 hole on the rudder and 2 holes in on the elevator. The box is a little big, but it's worth the space to store and travel with to make sure your plane stays in great condition. I had and continue to have a blast flying this thing and I know you will too.

Check out the E-flite UMX Turbo Timber here

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Last edited by Jason Cole; Apr 29, 2020 at 08:59 AM..
Thread Tools
May 09, 2020, 05:33 PM
Registered User
chulian1819's Avatar
telemetry? otherwise will wait for one with
May 09, 2020, 11:13 PM
Outback of Beyond
Bush League's Avatar
It has basic telemetry (voltage reading)
May 10, 2020, 08:00 AM
IWC
IWC
Registered User
I would prefer planes with rotary servos.
May 10, 2020, 04:18 PM
Lifetime Member
JohnM's Avatar
The linear servos work just fine on these UMX aircraft.
May 10, 2020, 11:56 PM
Registered User
Markran's Avatar
Will there be an RTF version with a bundled transmitter?
May 11, 2020, 10:11 AM
IWC
IWC
Registered User
I wonder if there will be a UMX Draco?
I am holding out even if it comes with linear servos
May 11, 2020, 02:13 PM
Registered User
Audioguru again's Avatar
A new "red" airplane will be announced in a few days. It might be UMX or larger.
A Draco is red.
May 11, 2020, 04:31 PM
IWC
IWC
Registered User
Thanks for the update
May 11, 2020, 11:52 PM
Registered User
Coptafeel's Avatar
Itís a Fokker Dr.I
May 16, 2020, 10:07 PM
Registered User
speed2004's Avatar
I bought one of these. looking forward to trying it out. lots of battery options up to 500ma!
May 17, 2020, 09:03 PM
DFS#000178
Rampage's Avatar
The power system in this beats up batteries. My 240MAh BabbleBatts last roughly 4 minutes of at-or-below half throttle flight and very short stints of full throttle cause so much voltage sag that it triggers LVC. After very short flights the motor and battery are also extremely hot.

This power system is over-propped, I'd be willing to guess. I want to try it with the 2-bladed prop from the UMX Timber to see if that helps but as it is I'm waiting for it to cook the motor or one of my batteries.
May 17, 2020, 09:43 PM
Outback of Beyond
Bush League's Avatar
The 550 mAh Babblebats work really well in this plane. I have two of them and have been typically doing 10 min flights but as they only have a few cycles on them as I am not going below 7.4V so they have a lot more in them than I am currently using. I don't push the plane hard as a beginner but will have a couple of minutes at full throttle per flight. They are a little warm after 10 minutes but not overly so.

I also have a 300 mAh Venon which will give me at least 7 minutes without problems, the battery doesn't get particularly hot.
Jun 19, 2020, 08:53 AM
Registered User
Habanero's Avatar
"With the standard UMX Timber no longer being available..." FWIW it may be discontinued but horizon is currently selling it on Amazon. I got one for my son last month and I like it so much I'm gonna snag my own.
Jun 19, 2020, 03:10 PM
Garry Owen!
Where do I buy Babblebat 550s?


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