Stevens Aeromodel Gym-E Review

Hear ye, hear ye: The classic Gym-E has returned! With a mild makeover from Stevens Aeromodel, Napo reviews it to see if it's still an oldie but a goodie.

My Gym-E dons a Spanish-flag on its wing. It's stylish like that.

Introduction

With an uber-dihedral wing, you can rest assured that this plane will just float, float and float some more.
With an uber-dihedral wing, you can rest assured that this plane will just float, float and float some more.
Wingspan:31"
Wing Area:265 sq. in.
Weight:5 oz.
Length:27"
Wing Loading:2.7 oz/sq. ft.
Servos:Hextronic HXT 500 five-gram servos
Transmitter:JR 662
Receiver:Castle Creations Berg 4L
Battery:Common Sense RC 2S 200mAh 10C LiPo
Motor:GWS IPS Motor and Gearbox A (5.86:1)
ESC:Castle Creations Pixie 7P brushed speed controller
Manufacturer:Stevens Aeromodel
Available From:Stevens Aeromodel
Price:$39.99

If there ever has been a pile of balsa sticks with a cult following, it's the Gym-E. The brainchild of Todd Long, it was a light, slow-flyer that felt right at home either in an indoor arena or out in the wild blue yonder. A relaxing wing-on-a-stick kind of plane, pros and rookies alike had a thing for it, an affinity.

Apparently, other companies liked it, too, and so it was copied over and over again. Plans weaved their way to the free-for-all market of the internet.

And then Gym-E disappeared.

Now this prodigal son of Sunday flyers has returned thanks to the mad laser-cutting skills of Bill Stevens. It's the same plane you used to know: Plenty of dihedral to go around and then some, three-channel, easy-to-keep-in-the-air characteristics and still the same big wing on a little stick. But it has gotten a bit of a facelift in the engineering department.

Gym-E fanatics unite! The little plane that could has returned!

Kit Contents

The Gym-E came carefully packaged. All the sheets are taped to a piece of cardboard to avoid sudden death in the hands of the USPS.

Upon closer inspection, here's what I found:

  • Balsa, balsa, balsa: It comes in several thicknesses, but its all crisply cut and itching to be CA'd
  • Plywood: There's plenty of it, but it's quite thin — 1/32".
  • Wooden dowels
  • Pushrods, pushrod tubing and landing-gear wires (two thicknesses in fact).
  • Hardware package: It includes some Dubro E-Z Mini Connectors as well as control horns.
  • Wheels
  • Full-size plans and printed instructions: But if you just can't wait to peruse the manual, you can find it here.

Note: My kit arrived with only one pushrod tubing missing. I informed Stevens Aeromodel about it just in case more kits have them missing.

What you'll need:

  • Motor: The inner rebel in you may want you to overpower the Gym-E with a brushless motor, but the truth is that it just may not be worth it. Bill Stevens concurs. I used the recommended GWS geared setup for this review (though if you're rebel enough there's a motor mount for brushless motors included)
  • ESC: Tiny, light and reliable, the Pixie 7P from Castle Creations does the trick.
  • Servos: Any micro servos will do, and this time I opted to go the inexpensive (read: dirt-cheap) route. I used two HXT 500 five-gram servos from Hobbycity.
  • Propeller: I used the recommended GWS 9x4.7 slow-fly prop.
  • Battery: I used a Common Sense RC 2S 200mAh 10C LiPo. Lighter is better, and you definitely don't want to go 3S (lest you want to turn your brushed motor into a smoke system). I also experimented with a 2S 350mAh battery, but more on that later.
  • Receiver: I used a Berg 4L from Castle Creations (provided by them for this review).
  • So-Lite covering and covering iron
  • Thin and medium CA
  • A workbench and all the tools of the trade (X-Acto knife, sanding block, Blenderm and whatever helps you get this thing finished).

Assembly

The instructions are superb, full of pictures and packed with details.

Fuselage

"Fuselage" is a loosely-used term here since it's barely more than a stick with pieces of plywood attached to it. But there are a few things to do.

The motor/battery/receiver mount is exclusively made of feather-light plywood (more on that later). Everything snaps into place, and a couple of drops of CA makes it safe and secure.

The rear wing mount is more of the same: Find the parts, attach them so they look presentable, and zap away with the CA. These parts are a clear display of great engineering, and you can just tell by looking at them. They're light, precisely designed, sturdy and functional. The fact that they look cool as a cucumber also is a plus.

Wooden dowels are what help keep the wing in place, and those need to be cut and glued in place. Easy does it.

Finally, it's time to indeed make a fuselage. Grab your new plywood creations, the hollow carbon-fiber rod, find a ruler and your trusty bottle of CA. Setting the plywood parts "inverted" (with the wing mount laying flat), slide the rod and make sure you get exactly 9-1/4” from the leading edge of the front wing mount to the trailing edge of the rear wing mount. Glue it, and you have a fuselage.

The final step is to make servo mounts, which is yet another plywood concoction. They're slide in between two pieces of wood without any screws, so make sure they're don't fit too tightly or loosely. Adjust accordingly with extra ply should you need to.

There are two options for the landing gear: Light and flexible or heavier and sturdy. I went for the latter option, and I must say that it's nice to have choices. I bent it accordingly on top of the plans, and I went the extra mile by adding some heat-shrink on each side of the spindle wheel; I get much better ground handling without the wheels madly wiggling around.

Tail

The Gym-E's empennage is a V-tail; the elevator and rudder are all controlled on the same surface, a la elevon on a flying wing.

The good news is that there's less building to do. And, with Stevens' proprietary Truss-Loc system, building each stabilizer and accompanying control surface is foolproof; each balsa part snaps into place in a letter-coded fashion: A goes with A and B goes with the rest of the Bs.

But there's a simple reason it's called a V-tail — you guessed it: it looks like a V when finished. You'll have to bevel the edges so they create a 110-degree angle once attached, and there's a jig to help you prop the stabilizers up to the desired angle and then attach sand them.

For the control surfaces, there's no need for precision — bevel them with your sanding stick to approximately 45 degrees, and you're ready to move on. (Remember, however, to bevel both a left and a right control surface — you wouldn't be the first one to end up with two left ones, and you likely won't be the last either).

After that, it's down to the usual film-covering and tape-hinging, and you're ready to move on to bigger things.

Wing

Speaking of bigger things, here's a 31-inch project ready for you to tackle. For the wing, Bill Stevens recommends going old-school and using a building board (a ceiling tile will do) and some T-pins so that your wing is perfectly built, down to a (pardon the pun) T.

But here at the Monasterio Electric Aerospace Institute and Crash Test Facility© (motto: "Electrons Rule, Yet Gravity Always Laughs Last"©), when someone tells us to do something one way, we sometimes second-guess them in the name of mad science and rebellion. We decided to find out if it could be successfully built without a building board. (Disclaimer: The fact that I didn't feel like making the three-mile drive to the home-improvement store did play a big factor in not using a building board).

Either way the wing is easy to build, and it's a matter of laying the different dowels and ribs over the plans and gluing accordingly. A bit of gap-filling CA is always a good thing to have handy since the ribs don't always conform perfectly to the dowels.

When it comes to adding the correct dihedral to the wingtips, you'll face the same conundrum as with the V-tail sanding. How do you get the perfect angle? It's the same concept, only with new gadgets. There are a couple of jigs that will help you prop the wingtip up, sand it, and attach it to the rest of the wing.

So, is it doable without a building board? Certainly. Is it just as easy? Hardly. If you have a building board handy, by all means use it, but if don't have one it's not the end of the world as we know it. I survived, the wing got built, and it still holds up, but it wasn't as easy I must admit.

Finally, it's time to once-again crank up the heating iron. Pick out your favorite colors, get creative and have at it as you pull, stretch and cut the covering.

Radio installation and final details

All that needs to be done before installing the electronics is gluing the V-tail. Unfortunately, there's no fancy gadget here to get the perfect alignment, it's all in the eyes and getting it aligned with the wing. Check twice and glue once.

CASTLE CREATIONS BERG 4L RECEIVER

Number of channels Four
Sensitivity About 2.0uV
Size .6 x 1.35 x .35"
Weight (with wires) 4 grams
Crystal Berg micro only
Case None
Available at Castle Creations

CASTLE CREATIONS PIXIE 7P ESC

Weight (without wires) 3g
Dimensions .28" x .58"
Programmable Yes. No brake or reverse option available, however.
Available at Castle Creations

HEXTRONIC HXT 500 SERVOS

Torque: 0.8 kg-cm
Weight: 5g
Dimensions: 22.9x11.4x22 mm

Operating Voltage: 3-6V

COMMON SENSE 2S 200mAh BATTERY

Number of cells 2
Capacity 220mAh
Voltage 7.4V
Weigh t27 grams
Dimensions 6mm x 25mm x 52mm
Wiring Balance-tap only, but it doubles as a discharge wire. It is the V1 version of the wiring, however (reverse from E-Flite)
Maximum continuous discharge 10C
Maximum continuous current 2 amps
Maximum burst discharge 15C
Maximum burst current 3 amps
Available at Common Sense RC

Oddly, the instructions for mounting the servos don't call for either glue or screwdriver, just a couple of rubber bands. I wrapped them around the casings of the servos, and they're still there to this day.

The pushrod system is just a pushrod, its tubing, the control horns on one end and an E-Z connector on the other side. If you feel up to the easy task, add a tail skid while you've got some extra wire on your bench.

On the front end, the GWS motor simply slides in, and if it doesn't, sand the stick ever so slightly (or add a thin layer of CA if it's too loose). Attach the speed controller nearby (or let it dangle, as I did), and put some Velcro for the battery at the bottom of the motor mount. The receiver goes behind the front wing mount.

V-tail setup

The last thing, and certainly one of the most crucial ones, is making sure that everything is doing what it's supposed to do on the V-tail end of the deal. But stick movements can be deceiving. You'd assume that V-tails work like elevons, but they don't.

Here are some tips:

  • Program your radio: With my JR radio, I use the delta-wing setup and not the V-tail because otherwise I'd be using the left stick to turn and the right stick to move the elevator. Check your radio and program accordingly.
  • Don't have a V-tail setting? Don't worry: If you have a non-computerized radio, there's no reason to fret: You can buy a V-tail mixer that will do the job for you. Essentially it's a Y-harness with some electronics in the middle, and it takes care of the programming your radio is missing.
  • Which way are these things supposed to move? Here's how it works: When you pull back on the elevator, both control surfaces will go up just like on a normal elevator. For the rudder, hen you push the stick to the left, the left control surface goes down and the right one goes up and vice versa.

So, don't expect it to act like an elevon or even an elevator. The rudder/aileron movement is opposite of what you're used to, and if you set it up backwards, you'll soon realize it.

Flying

Tipping the scales at barely five ounces and with a tame brushed setup on the nose, don't expect the Gym-E to be the kind of plane that will cut through the wind. Before you decide to maiden this wing-on-a-stick in the middle of a gale, consider the facts, and consider the name, too; after all, it’s a bit of an indoor flyer, though it can handle the outdoors easily.

During my pre-flight ritual, I checked for the usual suspects:

  • Did the control surfaces move as they were supposed to? No! So I reversed everything and moved on to the next step.
  • Did the CG fall where it was supposed to? No! (Great track record so far, eh?) It was actually a tad nose-heavy possibly due to lighter-than-recommended servos so I just attached the receiver to the CF rod with a rubber band. It's not going to blow out due to insane top speeds, believe me.
  • Were the rubber bands in good condition? Yes!

And with that, off it went.

Taking Off and Landing

Getting off the ground is never a problem given the larger-than-life wheels that it comes with so even takeoffs from grass are easy. The Gym-E slowly picks up speed, and then naturally gains altitude when it gains enough speed. There's no need to yank the elevator to oblivion; just pull back a bit whenever it just feels right.

Of course, if you're trying to take off from anything other than short grass or paved surfaces, you might just be better off doing the old hand-toss technique. Just rev it up, and there's not even much of a need to give it any sort of toss, actually.

A plane this slow tends to land itself. As long as you don't overcontrol it on approach, it will just slowly plop down on terra firma. They're hard to mess up on any hard surface, be it hardwoods on the gym or pavement on a parking lot or runway.

If you're landing on grass, chances are that anything taller than a golf-green’s grass will send your Gym-E belly-up. In my case, it happened a bit too often. With the inertia levels on that plane being close to zero, there's little chance for damage. I did manage to break loose the motor mount a couple of times though, and I ended up reinforcing it with some Gorilla Glue and scrap balsa. It came apart and eventually cracked much too easily, especially for a plane that carries such little inertia.

Basics

If there's one plane I can relate to and identify with, I have decided it has to be the Gym-E: it's lazy. It just strolls around, requires little attention and just doesn't much care what you do. It likes to lollygag along, stays low to the ground. It's just a relaxing little plane that putts along on a Sunday evening. It's snail paced slow, and it requires as little input from your transmitter as you could possibly imagine. If you let go off the sticks on a calm morning, it will just stay its course; It's that predictable.

And, speaking of inputs, I should also mention that it doesn't take strong directions very well. It is best controlled when you take it easy on the V-tail. It has a bit of a tendency to tip-stall if you yank the elevator around, and once you've stalled, you've lost almost all control of the plane until you've got some airflow.

As far as flying times go, you'll likely get tired of going in circles by the time your battery starts getting depleted; 10-15 minutes is a conservative estimate from my 200mAh battery. I also tried a 350mAh battery from Common Sense RC, and despite the mere six grams it was adding (22 grams compared to the 16 grams the 200mAh one weighs), the plane did start feeling a touch too nose-heavy and even a tad more sluggish in general. Keep it light, and you'll keep it floaty just like it's supposed to be.

The Gym-E and the wind will never be the best of friends, but they can be amicable under certain circumstances. It can handle a light breeze, but anything beyond five or six miles per hour, and the huge wing (along with its huge dihedral) just becomes a parasail in crosswinds. All in all, it does perform well even if the wind decides to show up.

The GWS geared setup certainly is no powerhouse, and I knew that full well before I even maidened this plane. But as the recommended setup, it did not disappoint. If you're thinking about going brushless, think again: A $14 motor will do the trick, and you truly don't need much more power than what's spinning on this review model. The climb rate is not radical, but then again, it doesn't have to be; it flies like it's meant to, and that's good enough for me.

Aerobatics/Special Flight Performance

THERE'S MORE WHERE THIS CAME FROM

Say, you like these small planes, huh? So do I, and since the fall of 2007, I have been writing reviews of them for Ezone. So, if you like these kinds of planes, check out some related reviews of indoor-sized models from Stevens Aeromodel:

Stevens Aeromodel DiddleBug: I dust off the original model in the last (for now, anyway) of my series about these tiny and fun planes.

Stevens Aeromodel E-Spresso: All small planes are created equal, right? Stevens Aeromodel proves otherwise! I review one of Bill Stevens' earliest offerings, and I try to keep up with it on the field.

Stevens Aeromodel MudBug: Four ounces of pure fun — what else could you ask for? In the world of micro planes this one is definitely among the best. Character, quality and gentle flying are the main traits of Bill Stevens' new design. This is the first in a series of articles reviewing Stevens' indoor/backyard lineup.

Stevens Aeromodel Lil'Squirt V2: It looks like the Squirt, but yes, it's Lil, indeed. Stevens Aeromodel's new release combines the easy, trainer-like flight characteristics of the original Squirt, yet it comes wrapped in a three-ounce, 25" wingspan package you can fly in the smallest of places. I'm back with the second in a series of articles reviewing Stevens' indoor/backyard lineup.

Stevens Aeromodel 1919 White Sport Monoplane: A scale plane with struts and realistic wheels that's under three ounces? But of course! Stevens Aeromodel is at it again with a monoplane kit, and I hit the workbench to see if this really is an oldie but a goodie.

With an arrow-thin fuselage, don't be expecting any mad knife-edges around here. Without ailerons, forget those hopes for even the meekest of rolls. And don't even get me started on that walking-speed top-speed...

You might be able to get a few loops out of this little Sunday flyer, but that's about it. And even when you do, they sometimes even look haphazard. But they're doable should you really want to try.

Flight video

Downloads

The great indoors

There's one reason and one reason alone that the Gym-E is called what it is, and you just guessed it: its indoor capabilities. It's light, it's too slow to be true, and it has a beyond-decent wing loading to make it gym-friendly.

Now, I'm not an indoor kind of guy and seldom fly there. I have yet to find a suitable venue near my home, but every now and then I make a trip to fly with my good friend Andy Grose in Tanner, Ala., and we eventually head over to his church gym. There, the mayhem of balsa-crunching usually soon follows as the walls join forces to attack my fleet. Many a wing has been ejected from the fuselage inside that church gym, indeed.

Recently, I had the chance to go fly up at his place again, and fellow reviewer and good friend Jeff Williams joined in the indoor bonanza. The Gym-E was in the trunk, and so we decided to give it a whirl inside those tight quarters.

Did it live up to its name, then?

Indeed it did. And I must admit, it performed better than any of my other indoor planes. In fact (and witnesses were present) it was the only plane that survived the impromptu durability test that evening. The gym is somewhat small, the ceiling is a tad low, and there were plenty of things here and there to make it a nice obstacle course, but we flew it (and smacked it some in the name of science), and Gym-E lived to tell the story.

It may be a bigger-than-usual plane, but thanks to its polyhedral wing and low speeds, it can cruise along lazily across a room without much of a problem. Its gentle turns didn't give us much of a problem as we did figure-eights, and keeping it at half throttle kept it nice and floaty. For some extra entertainment, my favorite thing to do with it was to put one wheel down and do circles around the floor with it — R/C waltzing, if you will.

I've flown all of StevensAero's backyard planes (save the E-Spresso) within the confines of fours walls, and most of them are a tad fast for my indoor tastes. They need a bit of airspeed to keep them going, and the end of the field quickly creeps up on you. The only other plane that I truly enjoyed flying at this venue was the MudBug, probably because it's the slowest and most floaty of them all. The Trexler wheels make for nice touch-and-bump-and-goes. Besides that one, the Gym-E is the only one I could fly without much of a problem in this gym.

This is a fine indoor offering, apt for the tiniest of planes — and, on that evening at the church gym, a good time was had by all, as you'll be able to see in the video.

Downloads

Is This For a Beginner?

Stick-fuselage planes with immense dihedrals have long been the epitome of what a first-time plane should be all about. They tend to self-correct themselves if things start getting hairy, and they fly slower than one could even expect. The Gym-E exemplifies all of these qualities, making it perfect for any first-time pilot.

The building process is not too complicated. The toughest part is the wing building-and-covering part but even then it's still quite simple. And the rest of it is the usual Bills Stevens: Simple, precise, foolproof — and explained in plain English. With a bit of patience and the necessary tools, even a rookie can make this plane look like the one in the pictures.

With such little inertia, there's little chance that you could injure poor Gym-E beyond recognition. You may tear some covering on the wing, but it's a sturdy construction, and it will not likely break unless you hit it with some vengeance. Worse comes to worse, the solution is just a glue-bottle away.

Conclusion

The days of the Gym-E are back, and the verdict for this new version is in: It's a winner.

This little plane is fun, it's relaxing, and it's superbly designed. Building it is a joy, and flying it is nothing but a hoot. If you've been keeping an eye out for a small plane to toss around the backyard or relax with after a 3D session, this just may fit the bill.

A WORD OF THANKS

I would like to thank the following people for making this review possible: Stevens Aeromodel for providing the Gym-E kit; Castle Creations for providing the Berg 4L receiver; my friend Bo Lovell for shooting some of the flying photos; my fellow flying buddy Chris Giles for shooting some more flying photos as well as the first portion of the video; and, as always, my wife, Sally, for shooting the remainder of the video as well as taking some more wonderful photographs, and Jeff Williams and Andy Grose for shooting video and photos for the indoor report.

My Gym-E is a faithful companion now for those early morning sessions at flying field. It's a head-turner, and I've even received some offers for it. My response: "Thanks, but no thanks. If you like it so much and you haven't even flown it, imagine how much more I like it."

Pluses:

  • An accurate replica of the original design, but with a nice upgrade in materials and engineering. The included jigs as well as the hardware package are both nice touches
  • Fantastic flying characteristics — light and floaty, and just a gentle little plane for casual flying
  • Can be built as cheaply as you'd like — no need for fancy electronics here, since cheap servos and a brushed motor does the trick
  • Instructions are superb, full of details, photographs and smart advice

Minuses:

  • Motor-mount are needs a little more reinforcing, especially if it's going to be marketed as a beginner plane

Wants:

I’d like to see a gadget (a la sanding jig or dihedral template) that would help you get the empennage perfectly straight with the main wing.

Last edited by Angela H; Nov 11, 2008 at 04:08 PM..
Thread Tools
Nov 16, 2008, 11:01 AM
Motor Maniac
This brings back memories. The Gym-E was my 6th RC plane. Back in the days before LiPo batteries, it used NiMH packs. Later changes to LiPo packs made the CG change. I eventually changed to a small CD-ROM brushless motor, not so much for increased power, more just for the quietness of not having a gearbox to deal with. Those IPS gearbox motor shafts bend too easily.
Nov 16, 2008, 11:31 AM
Xpress..'s Avatar
You know, you could probably use the alignment triangle to align the V-tail.

Excellent review though. I'm probably going to get one. since I've been wanting to "hone" my kitbuilding skills, and this just seems like a piece of cake to build

Only problem is that I only have 2 cel 450 and 480 mah lipos Not a problem with me. Longer flight time is better.
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Nov 16, 2008, 11:46 AM
Suspended Account
Hi Napo,

Excellent review!

Let me ask a question if I may. So far, I'm used to having planes that have their wings covered top and bottom. Having it this way, I find it easy to take out any warps in the wing by gentle application of shrinking heat to either the top or bottom of the wing (whichever being necessary).

How is this accomplished with having only the top surface of the wing being covered?

It's probably an easy task, but I'm still a newcomer to balsa kits, and don't know.

Thanks again for the great review, and yepppp, Bill Steven's does indeed produce some awesome planes!!!

Chuck
Nov 16, 2008, 12:46 PM
War Eagle!
Spackles94's Avatar
10Thumbs: Yes, the beauty of this plane is that it can take a CD-ROM motor without much problem (and without much damage to the wallet, too). How did it fly with the NiMH packs, though? Those things are relatively heavy...

It'd be nice if it were quieter, that's for sure. But some people tend to like the little gears cranking around in the air. It has a old-time feeling to it.

Xpress: Thanks for the kudos! Yes, this would be a nice kit to home your building abilities with. It's really easy, and the results are truly worth the effort.

The 450mAh packs may be a tad on the heavy side, though. I could start telling the difference with the 350mAh pack I was using. But the great thing is, you can buy a 250mAh pack for little more than $15 or so. The ones I'm using are about that price, actually. And you'll be in the air for a long time, don't worry...
Nov 16, 2008, 12:51 PM
War Eagle!
Spackles94's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoFlyZone
Hi Napo,

Excellent review!

Let me ask a question if I may. So far, I'm used to having planes that have their wings covered top and bottom. Having it this way, I find it easy to take out any warps in the wing by gentle application of shrinking heat to either the top or bottom of the wing (whichever being necessary).

How is this accomplished with having only the top surface of the wing being covered?

It's probably an easy task, but I'm still a newcomer to balsa kits, and don't know.

Thanks again for the great review, and yepppp, Bill Steven's does indeed produce some awesome planes!!!

Chuck
Chuck,

Glad you enjoyed the review!

With these sorts of planes, my trick is to carefully watch as I apply heat to the wing. You can unwarp them a bit my slightly twisting the wing if needed and then apply heat.

In this specific plane, the wing itself is quite rigid (the leading/trailing edges are made of thick dowels), so if you build it straight, it shouldn't warp much to begin with.

Just take it easy and you'll be fine.

That said, I was told my a friend of mine that if you cover the bottom of the wing, it's a much more floaty plane and even more fun to fly. I have yet to do so, but I'm always tempted to experiment.

Keep us posted!
Nov 16, 2008, 12:59 PM
Same Day Delivery
mike3976's Avatar
Nice Review! I bought mine off the 2nd batch or the re-release, what, five months ago. Set her up with a Cyclone Nano brushless (Horizion has them for $35) & a pair of 4.7 servo's, so It's lighter than the stock LPS set-up. It's a joy to fly in calm conditions & I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a relaxing flier. It maintains altitude on one click of throttle..........Gym-e..........YEAAA!
Nov 16, 2008, 01:20 PM
Xpress..'s Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spackles94
Xpress: Thanks for the kudos! Yes, this would be a nice kit to home your building abilities with. It's really easy, and the results are truly worth the effort.

The 450mAh packs may be a tad on the heavy side, though. I could start telling the difference with the 350mAh pack I was using. But the great thing is, you can buy a 250mAh pack for little more than $15 or so. The ones I'm using are about that price, actually. And you'll be in the air for a long time, don't worry...
15 minutes sometimes isn't enough flight time Especially when you just like to experiment with your environment.
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Nov 16, 2008, 02:18 PM
Wishing I was at Torrey Pines
dee-grose's Avatar
Hey, I know that guy! Oh, that's me in those pictures!

Good job on the review, Napo. Thanks for letting me be a part of the fun.

Andy
Nov 16, 2008, 03:07 PM
Motor Maniac
With the NiMH battery the flight times were okay, 7 minutes or so, but power was not that great. Had to dive to loop, and even then the loop was more a stall at the top.
I do remember trimming it out so it would circle in a very gentle climb hands-off, then setting the TX down for 20 or 30 seconds and just watching it circle a couple of times.
Nov 16, 2008, 06:11 PM
War Eagle!
Spackles94's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by dee-grose
Hey, I know that guy! Oh, that's me in those pictures!

Good job on the review, Napo. Thanks for letting me be a part of the fun.

Andy
Andy,

Thanks for contributing to it! I was worried we'd be calling you "Scarface" by the end of the evening, but you eluded the fast-moving Gym-E!
Nov 16, 2008, 06:12 PM
War Eagle!
Spackles94's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike3976
Nice Review! I bought mine off the 2nd batch or the re-release, what, five months ago. Set her up with a Cyclone Nano brushless (Horizion has them for $35) & a pair of 4.7 servo's, so It's lighter than the stock LPS set-up. It's a joy to fly in calm conditions & I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a relaxing flier. It maintains altitude on one click of throttle..........Gym-e..........YEAAA!
Thanks Mike! That motor does look neat, and I can also imagine that you could use a tiny E-Flite one for it. I've seen those used in some of Stevens Aero's other indoor offerings.

Glad you're enjoying your Gym-E, and feel free to post photos of it here, too.
Nov 16, 2008, 08:22 PM
Registered User
IFO FLYER's Avatar
I have one of the original Gym-E planes. It is stock and still in excellent condition.
Nov 16, 2008, 08:53 PM
War Eagle!
Spackles94's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by IFO FLYER
I have one of the original Gym-E planes. It is stock and still in excellent condition.
Hang on to it. It's almost a collectors' item these days!
Nov 16, 2008, 11:04 PM
BEC
BEC
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Note that my still-existing original Gym-E is now brushless - an Uberall Nippy Black 0508/73- and is NOT on floats all the time. That motor is heavier than the IPS but still turns the APC 10x7SF prop direct drive at less than 3A on 2s.....silently.

The new one is so much lighter - I probably ought to order one - but I still have a NIB original kit as well. Especially that it is lighter a good ol' IPS drive is probably a really good choice.


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