My Hummel fuselage with a Brummi wing (two discontinued Multiplex planes) is very similar to Hobby Lobby's original Miss 2. For many years it has served as my trainer plane, still camera ship and a Sunday flyer. The much used brushless motor-ESC combo I used in the plane recently died mid-flight on an aerial photo mission (a bit of a bummer, but the plane made it safely back to the ground as an RC glider) providing me with the perfect excuse to try out the new Motrolfly USA DM2215 and their 20 amp ESC. I have always liked this plane to be just slightly overpowered yet with good efficiency for long flights, and this new motor and ESC combination lets me have just that. These are from a series of new motors and ESCs from Motrolfly USA.
|Motor:||Motrolfly USA DM2215|
|Number of cells:||3 Li-Po|
|Working current:||10.5 Amp continuous|
|Rotation rate:||6500 RPM with prop|
|Price of motor:||$45.95|
|ESC:||Motrolfly USA FM-20amp|
|BEC:||2 amp maximum|
|Price of ESC:||$25.95|
|Programming Card:||E-PRG-1 programming card for ESC|
|Price of card:||$15.95|
The motor kit included the motor, a mounting piece, a small bag of screws and an O ring.
The 20 amp ESC came with nothing else. However, very good instructions (that include how to program it) come with the ESC or can be found on the Motrolfly USA web site by clicking on the "More information" button next to the chosen ESC.
Additional parts needed:
Motrolfly USA did supply an O ring prop adapter, but you will need to supply connectors unless you want to hardwire your ESC to your motor and I don't recommend that.
No connectors came with either the motor or the ESC but I had some 2.5mm M. P. Jet connectors on hand and soldered them in place as shown in the pictures below.
Depending on how I was mounting the motor, that could have been it for the motor assembly. But the mounting holes come on the backside of the motor, and I wanted them on the front side of the motor. That involved removing the 3 set screws with an Allen wrench, and pulling out the propeller shaft and reversing it, and then securing the propeller shaft facing the opposite direction as shown in the pictures below. I'm lazy, and I wish they (and all motor companies) sold a version with the shaft already reversed, but this was the EASIEST shaft reversal I have ever done.
I soldered a Deans connector onto the ESC to connect to my LiP oly battery packs.
Motrolfly USA also has a card for programming the ESC. I got this card in connection with their 40 amp ESC that I am using in my Multiplex Cularis. Since it works with all of their ESCs, I was able to use it with the 20 amp ESC in this project as well. Programming with the card is quick and easy. It was already set for the 3-cell LiPoly battery I planned to use (this combo can also be run using a 2-cell LiPoly, just follow the brief included instructions). I turned the brake on and to a hard stop as I don't want the propeller spinning and creating more drag when I turn the motor off. This is a plane that I frequently thermal, and it works very well as an electric glider.
With connectors installed, the shaft reversed and the ESC programmed; it was time to install it into my plane. Using the motor mount, I made holes in the front of the plane for mounting the motor. Using the supplied screws, I mounted the motor to the mount. Using 3/4 inch long size 40 bolts I bought I secured the mount inside the fuselage to the front wall. I checked the balance of the plane with the new gear installed, and it was slightly lighter than the previous combo so I installed the battery a little more forward and added some ballast to the nose to get the proper CG.
The motor cover/windshield was previously held on with a piece of tape and a rubber band at the top. As part of this refit, I cut the covering to expose the wood under the sides of the covering and epoxied on some Velcro strips. The opposite side of the Velcro strip was epoxied into place on the inside of the covering. A rubber band still helps secure it at the top just in front of the wing.
I gave the components a very through visual inspection when they first arrived, and I was impressed with the quality. Mechanical testing only began after the motor and ESC were completely installed in the test plane. Upon connecting the battery there is an electric warning that the motor is arming. If by accident you have the throttle up when you plug in the battery, as a safety precaution the ESC won’t arm. You of course don't want to do this testing at home (unless someone is holding the plane for you) but it is good to have this safety precaution in the ESC. The motor has 29 ounces of thrust with an 11 x 7 prop, and in ground testing it has demonstrated good pull. It should be able to haul my plane quite nicely as it is recommended for up to a 26 oz. 3D plane or a 42 oz. sport plane.
No break-in period is needed with a brushless motor. This one ran nice and smoothly from the beginning. The propeller shaft showed no wobble at any speed, and the acceleration and deceleration were nice and smooth with the movement of the throttle stick up and down.
Unfortunately, my wattage meter was out on loan at the time of this review so that info will be added later in a post after that testing has been performed. With all systems go, it was time for the flight testing.
First test flight was done under breezy conditions. The extra power came in handy after I quickly climbed after takeoff and needed to get back on course after a side gust of wind pushed the plane off line. The plane cruised very nicely at slightly over half throttle and was able to perform loops and barrel rolls above 3/4s throttle. The plane had about 15 minutes of motor run time with a 2100 3-cell LiPoly, and the first flight lasted over an hour with only a couple of thermals assisting.
This combo is perfect for a beginner trainer plane. It has more than enough power for the plane, and is efficient and smooth in operation. I hate underpowered trainers, but I had no such problem with this plane using this combo. Beginners might benefit from some simple instructions with the motor or ESC about soldering and installing.
I found the programming card to be excellent and easy to use with their ESC. I was able to set it up just as I wanted it. The operation of the combo with a 10 x 7 propeller and the recommended 11 x 7 propeller was perfect for my trainer plane, keeping it just slightly overpowered for a trainer. I look forward to many years of trouble free flying with my Hummel fuse with the Brummi wing with the Motrolfly USA combo. This motor combo with a folding prop would work well in a small electric glider as well.
I have reviewed some Motrolfly with some details here
Thread concerning DM2810-830 (Kv 732 rpm/V)
Thread concerning DM2810-1200 (Kv 1240 rpm/V)
Thread concerning DM2820-750 (Kv 640 rpm/V)
Thread concerning DM2820-950 (Kv 966 rpm/V)
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