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Jul 16, 2020, 11:29 AM
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Paul Naton's Avatar
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New Product

New Vixen 2 X-Tail w/2 Piece Fuse - Video Overview & Intro

I’ve been wanting one of the latest generation of uber-light F5J models for a while and had been looking at the usual 6 or 7 competitive models available. I have an Explorer 3.8 for windy big lift work and a tricked out Euphoria which is my go-to glider and proven contest winner, but at 60+oz, perhaps not the best choice for the lowest level thermal pick ups now required for F5J.

The Vixen 2 was at the top of my list as I had built and flown the F3J version and found it magical, so I knew the E version would be glider I could fly to the limit and the price was sure right. I got wind of a new X-tail version in the works and Alex and Bob at made me offer I couldn’t refuse.

The new version features the same planform and foils but now in a 4-piece configuration with the same option for a 4 or 6 servo set up. The biggest change is the fuselage, its been reworked and is in two pieces with removable tails for easier transport. Nice! Should build out in the 43-42oz./1200 gram range, which is insane.

The following video series is not really an in-depth review, but more of an introduction to the glider and a basic assembly guide pointing out some unique aspects of preparing this super-light competition plane for it’s first flight. The building out of the Vixen 2 is very straight forward and conventional except for the ELV/RDR servo tray which fits into the aft portion of the two-part fuselage. Of course you can order this plane built and ready to fly from Soaring if you don’t have the time or skills for a full electric build.

Hope be flying by next week!

Gear List:
Servos: 6 MKS 6110 HV for all surfaces, bearing frames for wings
Motor: Neu 1105/3Y/S/ P22 Gear Box
Speed Controller: Castle Edgelite 50 amp or Graupner +T 50 amp
SBEC: Castle 10amp
Prop: GM 14”x10” competition with GM 30mm spinner
Radio: Spektrum 9310 receiver for carbon
Cutoff Device: Altis +

Paul Naton
Radio Carbon Art Productions
R/C Soaring How-To Videos

VIXEN 2 F5J Cross Tail Glider Unboxing & First Look At The Super Light Carbon Parts (10 min 10 sec)
Last edited by Paul Naton; Jul 22, 2020 at 02:03 PM.
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Jul 16, 2020, 01:10 PM
Registered User
Hi Paul,

What do you project for the AUW with the
equipment listed?


Dave R.
Jul 16, 2020, 03:18 PM
Registered User
The empty weight of the Vixen X compact is 810g. It balances easy, so it depends on what gear you are using. Comp versions can be between 42-46oz AUW.
Jul 16, 2020, 06:03 PM
Registered User
Wow, that would be a pretty high weight gain for such a low empty weight. I would think 38-39 oz could be easily accomplished.
Jul 16, 2020, 06:22 PM
F3B and F3K
RetoF3X's Avatar
I have received a prototype of the Vixen 2 x-tail in early May and have been flying it for a while. It is a lovely aircraft with a great performance potential.

Attached are a few build pictures. Overall it is a very easy build. Maybe most effort was to make auto-connectors for the wings, but one could also leave the cables floating.

AUW is 1260gr (44.4ounces), with shortened servo leads and a wire harness made from 26 gauge Teflon wire.

I was pleasantly surprised how well it moves. I could fly quite ok in 7-10mph wind (without ballast) and penetration seemed still adequate in a reflexed cruise setting.

Also in calm air it seemed to do well, I got good float times from ~180m (10+min) in early morning air. I was worried that with the low weight, you would have a sharp polar, and fall off the optimum quite quickly. So far it seemed not critical to me to find the right trim and flying speed. Off note, I currently lack a reference.

The horizontal tail is quite large. I moved the CG back to 117mm. While the plane is quite neutral at this CG, it still flies without any vices. I.e. it does not seem to show any critical pitch response or instability around the axes.

The boom length and horizontal tail size remind me of the Icon2 (if you have ever seen one fly), which had a big horizontal and a rather short boom. In absolute terms, the boom is not that short on the Vixen 2, just the visual impression I got while flying it.

Best regards,
Last edited by RetoF3X; Jul 16, 2020 at 06:48 PM.
Jul 16, 2020, 08:07 PM
launch height can't fix stupid
Any chance they are considering an ultra light version that retains the 2 piece wing over the 4 piece. Goes contrary to the compact/travel friendly design but i do like the 2 piece wing.

Disclaimer: I am not a fan of these big planes (DLG rules!!) but the Vixen is growing on me.
Jul 17, 2020, 09:24 AM
Time for me to Fly...
Mr. Wiz's Avatar
Paul states above that it should build out under 30 ounces. Isn’t that ultra light for a plane this size? I can’t imagine wanting it any lighter than that.

When I go to the SUSA website it says it comes in three versions. I’m assuming the one Paul has is the competition version. The standard one looks like it’s a really good deal for a plane like this. I’m assuming it isn’t carbon fiber at that price....
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Jul 17, 2020, 09:45 AM
Registered User

I believe he is referring to the weight of just the airframe since Alex stated 810g.

Dave R.
Jul 17, 2020, 09:57 AM
Dark Side of the Red Merle
Curtis Suter's Avatar
It'd be nice to see the estimated flying weights of the three different versions.

I couldn't understand Paul when he was talking about the horizontal but I thought maybe he was referring that it's extremely fragile? A model needs to be able to handle the rigors of a season of flying and for me transportation in/out of the vehicle.

I really like the ballast in the wings as the load factor on the wing is much less versus carrying it in the fuselage.

I have always liked this model since I first saw it in Vegas at an F5J event.

Jul 17, 2020, 11:28 AM
Registered User
Paul Naton's Avatar
Thread OP
I'm going to weigh all the parts and see what our fly away weight will be.
Stay tuned.
Jul 17, 2020, 02:52 PM
Team Futaba
Silent-AV8R's Avatar
Does this end the V-tail? Or is it in addition to it?
Jul 17, 2020, 03:24 PM
Registered User
jtlsf5's Avatar
Originally Posted by Silent-AV8R
Does this end the V-tail? Or is it in addition to it?
Both X and V on the SUSA site. Suggests supplement, not replacement.

Jul 17, 2020, 03:35 PM
Team Futaba
Silent-AV8R's Avatar
Originally Posted by jtlsf5
Both X and V on the SUSA site. Suggests supplement, not replacement.

I know they are both still listed. I was curious about the future, if the V-tail was planned to stay in production.
Jul 17, 2020, 05:41 PM
Registered User
V-tail is currently offered with the 1pc fuse. However, we are working on introducing a 2pc fuse for V-tail, as well. Soon...
The non compact versions of the Vixen are still available, and will continue to be available.

Again, empty weight of the comp version is 810g.
Standard version will be within a couple ounces, and the strong version will be about 3oz more than comp, but very strong. The strong versions of the Vixen are nearly comparable to an F3J model strength wise.

As for the tail- yes, itís fragile. But no more fragile than any other model in itís weight class.

As you can imagine, if a manufacture can pull off 810g with around 1300+ square inches of wing area, being a four piece wing, two piece fuse, itís a very talented manufacture.

Remember, this model is 3.68m, but has the same wing area as most 4m F5J models.
Jul 18, 2020, 01:01 PM
Registered User
Paul Naton's Avatar
Thread OP
So here is a list of weights and what the fly away all up will be, plus or minus a oz. or so.

Vixen 2 Weights RTF- In Grams

Motor/ESC RTF 145
ELV/RDR servo tray w/servos 26
Prop/spinner 19
Receiver 19
4 wing servos and frames 50
Wiring Harness 55
Fuse Front 71
Fuse Rear 70
Rt Tip 140
Left Tip 143
Left Wing 174
Rt Wing 172
Vert Fin 27
Stab 33
Joiner 54
4S 650 battery 66
TOTAL: 1264 g - 45 oz. +/-

Only place to shave weight would be in wire or smaller motor, but that would save only a oz. or so.
45 oz sounds about right for this span and wing area.

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