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Jun 10, 2002, 01:07 AM
Registered User

Firebird XL

Hello, I'm new to parkflying and would like your take on the firebird xl. I've heard it was a great beginner plane and I'm a beginner. Also, do you guys have any other suggestions? Thank you for your time.
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Jun 10, 2002, 01:26 AM
Live to ride... and fly!
Tres Wright's Avatar
Hello Dustin-

Welcome to the group!

If you are planning on teaching yourself how to fly, any of the crop of 2 channel flyers (one channel- throttle, one channel- rudder: left/right) are the best way to get your feet wet. The Firebird XL, the E-gull or the Firebird 2 would serve you well starting out. If and when you upgrade, you will not be able to reuse any of the gear from any of these planes though. However, they are still a good deal at less than 100 bucks considering they come with everything you need to get in the air.

There's a new plane along the same lines as these that is a 3 channel (also has elevator: up/down control) called the T-hawk. So far it's gotten good reviews, it's downfall being that it has motor on/off instead of a true throttle. However it is available without radio gear, you can spend another 85 bucks and get "real" gear elsewhere to use on it that you could use on future planes as well.

Also take a look at the Hobby Lobby web site, they have lots of foam beginner planes that will get you in the air quick, use reusable conventional radio gear and are easy to repair if you crash.

Good luck!
Last edited by Tres Wright; Jun 10, 2002 at 01:28 AM.
Jun 10, 2002, 03:08 AM
Registered User

thank you

Hey thanks Tres,
After going and finding the e-gull I noticed it came with more stuff and was cheaper. I am now going to probably buy the e-gull. Thanks again, also, what motor does the e-gull use? Like 380 or something? Thanks again.
Jun 10, 2002, 04:50 AM
Registered User
It's smaller, it is just a 180 direct drive. But don't let that lull you into thinking that it's slow. I bought mine a few months ago, but with the competition in this segment, they have added more goodies like the landing gear, extra tail, etc. Search on the E-gull and you'll see some suggestions to get started with this model. The charger they ship is crap, so if you are gonna spend some time with this hobby, get hold of a peak charger (again search, get a million opinions and make your decision). Since this one has a small motor and having obtained the Qualcomm Li-ions, I am considering running the E-gull on it for extended flight time.

IMO, Tres has some very good advice regarding the T-hawk. That model wasn't available then; today I would go for the T-hawk in a heartbeat/ I'd skip their Tx/Rx and use something more conventional. However, it is much heavier and has a 380 motor, so the Qualcomms are not an option for this model.

P.S. - since one cannot control the elevator on the E-gull remotely, I am not sure about being able to land on the wheels. Mine didn't come with them, but that does not bother me as I like to (and able to) glide it to me and catch it by the nose. Or land it within a few feet, if it's windy.
Jun 10, 2002, 10:57 AM
Live to ride... and fly!
Tres Wright's Avatar
Ditto what Electrifan said, those little 180 motors give impressive performance on these little planes! I have a Firebird 2 that I still fly every once in a while and it has a nice climb rate for having such a tiny motor.

Electrifan, I'd be interested in hearing a report if you try li-ons with your gull, I've thought about trying them on my FB2 but I was concerned the voltage would be too much for the motor.

I do the same catching technique with my FB2, try to hand-catch it after flying it. One day I flew it 3 times and caught it all 3 times, the plane never touched the ground that day! LOL!
Jun 10, 2002, 12:24 PM
Registered User
I was concerned about the voltage too and thought some inline resistance would bring that down. Since it's been a while since I learned about electricity in middle/high school, I need to read up on it a bit. I also want to find out how much current is drawn by this little motor.

I will post a report here after my experiment.

However, I have just got the TM and will spend a little time on it first.
Jun 10, 2002, 02:37 PM
Live to ride... and fly!
Tres Wright's Avatar
Don't keep that Tiger Moth waiting

My FB2 runs 4 cells or 5 cells, 6.0 volts on the 5 cell pack. My QCs are usually at 8.15 volts after charging. I've heard several people say here that a motor "sees" the full voltage of a pack and can burn up even if it is kept at partial throttle the whole time. That's been enough to keep me from trying it!
Jun 10, 2002, 10:40 PM
Tee Sqaured
Thomas Manson's Avatar
The fire bird Xl is the best biggeiner plane i have flown. it's very easy to fly can almost never damage it. plus, flights are 15 advice,GET A FIRE BIRD XL
Jun 10, 2002, 11:20 PM
Registered User
djspnz's Avatar

Try this

"it's very easy to fly can almost never damage it"

well... i bought 1 firebird xl and it crashed (and died) because i didnt know what i was doing, then i bought a second one and it crashed (and died=non fixable damage) then i bought just the fuselage and wings to make a third one and i lost it to the wind....see a pattern???? Well, after all this (which all happened within 2 weeks) i still wanted to try this R/C stuff so i went to me LHS and picked up a Soarstar, it took me about 6 hours to put together only because i didnt know what i was doing (with experienced help u can have up and running in about 3 or 4 hours)and after that i didnt fly it the next day only because i was sure that i was going to kill it too, on the third day i took it out and to my surprise it flew great, 3 times on that day and no crashes, actually i was able to land it like a pro on my first try; This was about 3 weeks ago, now my soarstar has about 12 flights on it and i've been able to do loops, rolls and fly it inverted (just learned the las two yesterday, thanx to Mpj220), the simple loops i was able to do on my 7th flight and to this day i have not crashed this plane. Bottom line, This is "THE" best trainer u can get, plus everything u put in it can be used in your next plane.
If u have any Q's let me know ill be glad to help u out!!! the way, i bought the Soarstar with a JR-Quattro radio for $240 at my LHS. Best $240 i've spent in a long time
Jun 11, 2002, 01:12 AM
Oz Member
Ragnar's Avatar
No matter what the aircraft, I would recommend at least a couple of "helping hand" flights with someone who can fly. Makes the world of difference. I'm not going to give you the full-on "thou shalt join a club!" speech, but it does help!
My 2cents worth
btw I have a Firebird XL and I'm amazed at what it has come away from in (relativily) one peice.
Jun 11, 2002, 01:40 AM
Registered User

Ok guys, time for me to decide...

Ok, time for the moment of truth guys. I am going to purchase my first parkflyer tomorrow. I am really considering the e gull. It has a 30 day money back garentee so that is good too. Does anyone disagree with my decision? Something I don't know that would make me change my mind? Thank you for all of your help.

p.s. Are there any people in the Portland Oregon area that fly planes? Or is there a club in this area? Thanks again.
Jun 11, 2002, 10:26 AM
Registered User
I am sure there are ezoners out there. Try the Ezoner Locator to find someone near you.
Jun 11, 2002, 11:17 AM
Tee Sqaured
Thomas Manson's Avatar

i got one and im loveing it!
Jun 11, 2002, 01:07 PM
Registered User

yes I know...

I know about the firebird xl. That was the first one I found. However on another forum, I found on a topic comparing the xl and e gull that the xl needs much more airspace to turn. Yah it is more powerful but all I have is football fields around me. So I am still thinking the E gull because it turns faster and comes with more stuff. Any other suggestions or anything good to say about the e gull?
Jun 11, 2002, 01:36 PM
Planes, Guitars and Cigars
Steve_A_Reno's Avatar
Even with all the problems I had with my e-gull, when I finally got it up in the air, it was relatively simple to fly. I would recomend using the FMS rc sim software to familiarize you with rc flight and left right orientation. Just using the joystick I found a few planes I could configure to fly with just throtle for elevator and rudder for L/R. Which is all the EG and FB use for controls.

Faster turns can also mean faster spins and faster crashes so thats not much of a selling point. The E-gull needs some rooms to fly. I know one of there vids shows it on the inside of a baseball diamond but I think that is unrealistic to the planes real design wich is more adapted to soaring.

I don't know about the other planes, but all the parts to the EG parts are available from the toytronics web site.

Good luck,


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