E-flite Mini Edge 540 from a sports planes perspective - RC Groups
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Oct 27, 2008, 06:46 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar

E-flite Mini Edge 540 from a sports planes perspective

Picked one of these up second hand at the LHS last weekend and thought it would make a decent hack sports model. I've skimmed through some of the gigantic threads in the 3D forum about the model and the concensus there seems to be that the model is rather heavily built for 3D-ing.

Since that isn't my intention anyway I wondered if there was a different perspective on the use of this model as a general sports aerobatic "hack".

I've elected to go with an Emax 2810 outrunner- which is more of less equivalent to the E-flite 480 outrunner that they started to recommend for the model. For power I'm using a Loong Max 2250 3s1P lipo- my first real foray into the cheaper end of the lipo market - which is quite a tight fit.

She's been repaired in the past and the original stick mount and space frame motor box replaced with a much more robust 3mm liteply box. Siting the 40 amp ESC is another tight squeeze and looking like being within the motor box as the best alternative, since it's one of theose Hobbywing guard jobbies with a baancing lead connector that needs to get back into the battery compartment.

The previous owner had beefed up the front end quite dramatically, installing a battery retention system that would keep a 16 cell Sub-C pack in place, with 1/4" balsa walls and triangular stock guides for a foampadded dummy former to lock into place. I've cut most of that out and till just put a velcro strap around the battery pack.

Anyway, having taken the wings off they look awfy small and there's not much in the way of wing area there. Hence my question.

If there's anyone out there using one of these as a normal sports model, flying it on the wing, rather than on the prop -i.e. not a prophanging, torque-rolling machine - what sort of wingloading are you operating at? What does your lil' Edge weigh in at?
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Oct 27, 2008, 12:43 PM
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LtDan's Avatar
I bought a E540 last spring when I went looking to buy a EF 480. The plane came with the motor and I think the whole thing sold for $79.99. Quite a deal because the motor by itself was about $60. I was not impressed by the stick mount and redid the fore bulkhead and made some aluminum standoff mounts. I use a Thunder Power 2150 battery and replaced the landing gear with an aluminum unit and larger wheels. Also there is room to mount the ESC underneath the motor box extension. Here are some pixs of the mods:
Nov 01, 2008, 11:27 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Thanks Dan -that's a nice mount.

I ended up cable tying the ESC to the inside of the motor box, but it's got plenty of air ingress and egress> I might even add a scoop on the side.

Hoped to maiden the model today but the weather at the field didn't live up to the nice autumn day at home and my clubmates were just leaving, having not even unloaded as we got to the field. So we followed suit. She'll have to wait unril next weekend now.
Nov 02, 2008, 08:45 PM
Registered User
I only got to fly mine twice before radio interference "grounded it/me". Got lucky and a nose dive from about 50 feet altitude only broke the firewall from the frame and split part of the balsa sheeting on the sight side - 15 minutes with some 5 minute epoxy and some fast CA and she appears to be good as new. Anyway, the two flights I had were a LOT of fun. The plane tracks well, performs more aerobatics than I know how to do and went form "why did I buy this - guess can test that darn transmitter" to "Glad it got repaired, this will be the first plane I program into the new transmitter".

Good old fashioned e-Flight inrunner motor on the eFlite gearbox/12x6 prop and 3S 2100 Lipo. The only mods I did were a couple of reinforcing triangles to tie the motor stick to the firewall and slightly larger wheels so I could fly off the grass. I am sorry I waited so long!
Nov 16, 2008, 08:48 AM
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rstoomanyhobbies's Avatar

Battery Location Help?

Just picked one of these up. The battery area is tight! I can squeeze a TP2100 in over the rudder servo but how the heck are you guys securing it? Mine was built so not sure I got all the parts. My concern is that if I velcro it in place I may not be able to pull it out. Maybe some other way of holding it in place? Any other locations? This think is very tail heavy as you know.
Nov 16, 2008, 04:56 PM
Registered User
I made a velcro strap for mine.
Dec 05, 2008, 05:16 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
MIne has a velcro strap aroud it now. When I got the model it had two massive supports made from 1/2" triangular balsa and 1/4" sheet, with a 3mm ply former with a foam face that squeezed in behind the battery to hold it in place. That all had to go in order to make sufficient room to get the battery in and out.

One thing does concern me in everyday operation and that is the possibility of puncturing the Lipo getting it out against the arms of the rudder servo pull-pull system. I'm seriously thinking of moving that servo to the tail to get it out of the way.

Still haven't flown the model yet, so she's jest hangin' around
Last edited by leccyflyer; Dec 05, 2008 at 05:24 AM.
Dec 05, 2008, 12:15 PM
Registered User
I bent the arms of the cotter pins down to avoid the puncture problem.
Dec 06, 2008, 08:17 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Good idea! - Thanks for that
Mar 29, 2009, 02:15 PM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
My boy finally maidened the little Edge a few weeks ago and found her to be very twitchy with the throws as per the manual, and complained that the model wanted to tuck under all the time.

On a trip to the field today I rechecked the control centring, taking out all of the uptrim that had been put in to counter the tucking under and flew her myself. I found this little beauty to be a delightful model to fly, tracking really nicely and I'm impressed. I'll experiment with a smaller diameter, pitchier prop to give more top end speed in the straight and level but there's no shortage of vertical performance right now.

Happy bunny after an enjoyeable afternoon at the field - Spring's here
Apr 13, 2009, 05:54 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Really loving this model now after flying her a lot more this weekend- she really tracks well and, so far, seems vice free in the air. Very enjoyeable to fly and a revelation for me, since I'm not normally taken by thos sort of model. She's passed the "If I crashed this would I get another one?" test with flying colours yesterday.

The only issue I had is probably down to my rusty flying and that's been a tendency to nose over, on landing and once whilst taxiing. I did wonder if the undercarriage had moved back a bit in use, but it seems to be okay. Then, after a chat this morning with a pal and re-reading this thread, the lil' Edge will be treated to some slightly larger wheels before her next outing.
Feb 20, 2010, 02:27 PM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Nine months on and the little Edge 540 has become my favourite small model - brilliant fun and today's last couple of flights in the late evening sun against a bright blue sky left me with a grin that's still there three hours later

It's not all plain sailing though - the model is a delight in the air, and good as gold on taking off, but on landing there's still the odd mishap. I tried some slightly larger wheels and they helped, but the soft ground of this winter season is taking it's toll on landing. The model regularly goes end-over-end on what would even be a good landing for my other models, finishing up on her back. I've even tried turning the undercarriage through 180 degrees, on the offchance it was fitted the wrong way round.

Is it just me, or is anyone else experiencing such a problem? Any ideas?
May 14, 2010, 12:05 PM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Just an update for my own benefit really.

On the advice of a flying pal I cured the nosing over by fitting a piece of triangular balsa trailing edge to the undercariage mount, which brings the wheels forward a touch. She's perfectly behaved on the deck now.

I fly this model every time I go to the field and, with the kit not apparently available hereabouts these days, was getting a bit twitchy about possibly losing the model in a crash, or worse. I haven't seen another one anywhere, since getting mine, and a few clubmates have commented on how nicely the model flies.

Then this week I've seen two for sale at once.

Holding off on placing a bid until the last twenty seconds I just bought another Mini Edge 540 as a spare, just in case .
May 25, 2010, 06:48 AM
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leccyflyer's Avatar
Update to report on the tryouts of the duplicate Mini Edge 540.

The chap who I bought the model off did a fantastic job of packaging the airframe so that it arrived with no damage at all. Compared to the earlier model she's lighter up front, with none of the heavy beefing up with thick balsa sheet that the other airframe has. She came with a geared E-flite 4200kv inrunner and 12x6 prop, plus all the servoes fitted.

I finished gearing the model up with an AR500 recevier, a 30 amp Hobbywing Pentium ESC and a battery strap to hold the 3s1p 1800mah Loong max pack in place and replaced the tiny wheels and spats with similar sized wheels as on the original. The weight without the battery was 22oz versus the 25oz for the original. Haven't put a meter on the model yet, which is a bit naughty.

Flew her for the first time on Saturday and the model is a joy, though completely different than the original. Much more vertical, but a much slower straight line straight and level maximum speed. Great for prop hanging and the limited amount of 3D that my skills will permit. Enough that I can see me always taking both models to the field fortheir different characterisitcs.

Sunday saw us at the Blackpool fly-in and, after a few flights with both Mini Edges, my boy and me got the opportunity to fly both together at the end of the day, in an impromptu formation aerobatics flight off the peg. that was a great laugh, until the canopy came off in the air, forcing me to land and letting Tim finish off the flight on his own. I think these are going to be real fun models to fly together though.

Here's a picture of the original sports aerobat model in her natural habitat at the weekend.
May 25, 2010, 01:03 PM
Time for me to Fly...
Mr. Wiz's Avatar
Formation flying is a hoot, leccy. A few years ago I was part of a three man formation team we dreamed up at our club. We all flew identical planes. It was the Great Planes Venus. One day when we were flying we were doing formation humpty bump at the end of the field. I ended up a little farther out than he. When we pulled over the top the planes looked to cross quite closely. After another circuit or two I said to my pal.... "My plane looks a little funny. When we come back you have a look." Sure enough. The tail fin was all but gone. When we landed all that was left was the bottom hinge and control horn attached to a tiny triangle of rudder. What was amazing is that I didn't even notice any strange flying characteristics. Of course, we didn't fly and hammer heads.

There was also the time when we called for a turn and the one fella said "uh oh". He had been following the other guys plane for quite some time. It took awhile but we eventually found his smashed to bits. We still get a good laugh out of that one.

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