Saturday, October 27, 2007

Axi 2820/12 maiden report in the Altec Skydancer

What a nice Sunday. It was unseasonably warm with winds in the 5-10MPH range, perfect to remaiden the model at the SEFLI Wingnuts field in Calverton NY. Recently the field “bugged-out” and resituated it’s runway. With winds out of the West it was perfect for flying.

In a nutshell the repowered model fly’s great. Moving to the outrunner did not sacrifice as much airspeed as one might think. As one expected rate of climb has increased dramatically. Take off and landings are a non-issue despite the larger prop. Some of this I attribute to the fact this model floats in for a landing. Flight times are also longer as I no longer find myself flying the model with the throttle at or near the firewall. I did not time them but I would say I’m in the 7-minute range right now. That’s not bad considering I was hitting the ESC’s cutoff at about 4 minutes before!

One area that needs to be improved is the thrust line. I have added 2 shims in an effort to add some down thrust. Also I have shimmed slightly the models leading edge of the wing down to help it stop ballooning.

With just enough time for one last flight I announced that “just one more flight” was in order. Anyone who knows that slogan knows it’s the biggest jinx in the RC world! Having flown the Skydance 3 times before what could possibly go wrong?

As a lesson learned not to challenge the RC Gods about 2 seconds after liftoff the Axi motor and firewall departed the model! The motor had given no indication of trouble up to that point and it was quiet as a mouse. So at about an altitude of 10 feet and little airspeed I had but one choice. There was no going around for sure. I pushed the elevator all the way down to try and get the model some speed and landed HARD at the end of the grass runway!

Being the balsa outhouse that is this ARF she survived without a scratch, and without a motor for that matter.

The motor and firewall has been re-installed and pinned this time for safe keeping. Live and learn for sure.

Wish me luck on upcoming flights!

Tommy D