|Going Electric - With Electro Flyer!|
April is upon us and the weather seems to be taking a turn for the better at last. We can finally get out and fly! I'm afraid as it has been such a busy month for me my article will be fairly brief this month, - modelling wise rather than work for a change.
As mentioned last month, and featured in the Shop Front area on this site, I have now taken on a new range of models which I am importing. I have been looking for the just right models for about 2 years now and I believe I have finally found them
My requirements probably made it hard for me to find the right thing. I wanted ARTF models that would be ready to fly within an hour or so from opening the box, to have REAL radio gear with servos etc that was compatible with popular radio equipment such as Futaba, primarily to be three channel with proportional control on rudder and elevator, to be park flying electric models and to have everything included so that a beginner or expert would have nothing else to buy.
Not too much to ask for really!!! Anyway - I found them. Three radio controlled models plus a free flight model as well which I just could not resist.
Firstly the J3 Cub - just gorgeous in bright yellow - foam, only 750mm span, really light and yet she has three channel radio including proportional rudder and elevator plus switched motor control. The kit builds in 5 minutes out of the box - REALLY!!
The transmitter is included and all radio is pre-installed in the kit and there is even a mains charger. The only thing you need to buy is 8 AA batteries for the transmitter (this is the same for all the radio control models) - this definitely fitted my requirements.
Last Friday (29th March) I took her to my local field and she was a dream. A little bit of extra weight towards the nose (I actually moved the flight Ni-cad forward) to get balance and off she went. For such a small model she is an absolute dream. Easy to control, very smooth and a perfect landing once the BEC cut in. The next flight was longer as the Ni-cads settled in but just as pleasant. She looks and flies the way you would expect a Cub to do. Should you have a bump she does come with a spare prop.
OK - next the Skywave 2005B. Again, a three channel model but this time a real trainer having tough ABS fuselage and strong plastic tail boom. At 1020mm span with a foam one-piece wing and pusher motor she is a higher-powered model that looks really smart.
Off she went - straight and true, a little trimming and she was away. Perfect balance, great rate of climb and very controllable. With her being so tough she would be the perfect first model - and again everything is included, real radio etc. although she does take longer to put together out of the box. It must have taken me a good 10 minutes this time!!!
Finally in the radio control section comes the Skywave 2005V. This is the sister to the 2005B having the same dimension but this one has a V tail and uses 2 channel radio. This is for proportional rudders (two of them as she is a V tail) and proportional throttle.
She is aimed at perhaps the more experienced modeller, as you need her trimmed before the main flight.
Not having an elevator you need her trimmed just right so that with engine off she will glide nicely.
Test glides looked OK - a little nose up but she seems all right and I was keen for that first flight so off she went with a throw and full power.
She very quickly climbed to a stall, corrected this with power, brought her round but she was still tending to stall and as I brought her in, easing the power to smooth her out she stuck her nose straight into the grass bringing up the turf! Oh Dear! I thought. I collected her to find that she had mud on her nose and nothing else - no damage done at all - very tough these models!
A little down elevator (moved both rudders down a little), a test glide that was gentle downwards and I was happy that she was right this time. Topped the battery up and off she went again.
Perfect this time, she climbed smoothly and was very stable, controllable using the proportional throttle to act as elevator and a smooth gentle glide when the throttle was cut.
All three models glide exceedingly well when you cut the engine - the Skywaves really glide - I look forward to the hot summer days (You're an optimist then! Ed.) to see what they make of thermals but I expect at least 10 minutes out of all of them.
Finally there is the Rainbow 215. A lovely little foam free flight electric model. About 10 minutes to put her together and what a lovely model she is - really looks the part! She has a build in Ni-cad and comes with a charger unit that takes 4C size batteries (not re-chargeable). Plug this in underneath, hold the button for three minutes and she has enough power for her flight.
Friday was lovely, just a gentle breeze so she had to have a flight. Three minutes to charge her, a couple of test glides to make sure she flew in a nice gentle glide with a slight turn - tweaked the rudder and elevator to get this just right - motor switched on and off she went. What a thrill - I fully understand why the free flight boys get so much pleasure!
As she gently circled, gaining height and drifting downwind she was an absolute dream. So stable and what a thrill to have no control over her - it was all down to the trimming during the test glides. Off she went, gently gaining height for a bout 2 or 3 minutes and then as the engine slowed she lost height a gently moved back to terra firma. Wow - hats off to the free flight modellers - how do you take the stress!
My final requirement was for these models to be affordable. The Cub is £115, Skywave 2005B is £140 and Skywave 2005V is £120 - I think I have managed to meet all of my pre-requisites, I hope you agree!
If you would like any of these then get in touch - they are going like hot cakes at the moment so delivery is about 6 weeks as I have monthly deliveries. I also offer a fast charger to connect to you car battery to keep you flying all day. This is and extra £19.99
Anyway, that is why I have not had chance to do anything else this month. I will sort the Spitfire out and report back to you as well as all the other projects I have on the anvil - but this month has been really exciting for me - I have finally found exactly the models I have been looking for.
Just in are the brightly coloured (orange) T-Hawks. Very similar to the Skywave, with a V-tail and normal tail versions. More next month - I have more news of these new model available in this range, plus all the other projects - I will keep you informed. Enjoy your electric flying - I know I am. Any questions you have feel free to get in touch.