The flying monkeys got me...

Helis and fixed wing

AMA 957918
IRCHA 4345
AMA Intro Pilot Instructor

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

At least I can breath now...

Beautiful day in Bedford, NH. I took the Pulse XT and the MXS-R 30cc out to the Joppa Hill Sports Field, where the grass is waaaay too tall and thick.

I flew a couple of packs in the Pulse, and when she landed the second time I heard a metallic jingling when the prop stopped. I shook her and she jingled in the front. I had to superglue on of the motor magnets in place a couple of months ago and figure it had come loose, but she shouldn't run then.  Later when I got home I found that the prop screw and washer had somehow come loose. Curious: all the forces tighten it, not loosen it. Prop stayed in place because of the spinner...

I took the 30cc up next. She started easily, still a bit of a high idle. In warm up she stalled in idle. Restarted, let her warm up and took her up, great flight! She seems a bit slow... 19x8 at 7300rpm full throttle. She goes vertical without any lag. This time though she sputtered, and I brought her back down, 4-cycling a lot. Landed, revved her, idled. Everything seemed fine. Refueled and took off. No 4-cycling, no sputtering! Did some vertical, Cubans, loops, ran sweet. I think she just likes a bit more warm up. Flew two half tanks, about 20min total, and put her away. I wanted to take another run, but it went so well and my hands were shaking, the stress beating in me, so I packed her up. At least I could breathe this time!

I do worry about flying my 30cc here. There are only a couple of houses, none adjacent to the field, and a teaching farm up the road. I keep waiting for someone to complain... So I try to space the flights out, keep the around 10 min and high.

The replacement Sukhoi SU-26 arrived today. Jumping to get her started!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

30cc Rocks!

While today saw the death spiral of yet another 70 sized electric (what the hell is up with me and this class of aircraft that I keep drilling holes in the ground with them?), I did have one helluva much needed success with the 30cc gas Breitling MXS-R.

I ran her on the ground for half a tank. She continues to run pretty damn well. She idles a bit high, around 2100-2200 RPM, but she doesn't produce much thrust at idle and the engine doesn't quit, certainly not rolling at all in the grass, and she lands fine. Max out at 7600 RPM with full vertical climb at speed.  Running bamboo wood 19-8.

After a bit of taxiing about and running full and idle throttle, I finally nailed my courage to the sticking place and took off. Perfect, level, controlled, outstanding climb out. I set her through the usual maiden routine, and she handled perfectly. I landed her twice without incident. She flew just fine. Just fine! Flew two half tanks. Would have kept going, but...

I am a little worried about noise. I fly from a public sports field, near an educational farm, and some houses are nearby. It doesn't make much, less than a lawnmower, but its bound to annoy someone at some point...I do love me the sound of a gasser though. I am thinking of replacing the crashed electric Suhkoi SU-26 (goddammit...) with a 10cc 70 sized Sukhoi SU-26.

Right after this photo I drilled the Sukhoi into the ground. In the sun, entered a spin, could not get out, in the end over controlled, bam. I knew I was losing orientation and was too close to the ground. Stupid, stupid mistake. It is the first time I threw things (hat, transmitter, but gently) and cursed a crash like an angry whore. I remain so very pissed. So much time, money and effort and I wasted it.

This is why my wife shouldn't let me have nice things.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Gas Rot

In my last post I mentioned how the 30cc MXS-R was acting fuel starved before it finally died. I emptied the tank at the field and brought her home. Today I removed the canopy to get the cowl off and was surprised by gas in the tank. I proceeded to empty it again and nothing moved. Ahhh... It's the clunk line I bet. The Du-Bro hand pump was leaking gas, so I couldn't empty the half tank of gas in the plane. This morning I went out to Nashua to visit RC Buyers Warehouse and picked up a NJ Modelers tank and pump because the tank doesn't leak like my McGyvered one I have had for 2 years, and it wasn't a Du-Bro pump.

NJ on the left, my McGyver on the right.

The clunk line hsd failed. Turns out the Tygon had rotted right off. It's not supposed to, but there it is. Fixed. I went ahead and overhauled the motor and carband put it back together. Took her outside, filled her with my new tank pump, and after a few cranks to prime and she fired up clean and smooth on the default needle settings. Made some tuning adjustments and now she runs sweet again! Put the cowl back on, and then dropped my DX8 transmitter on the asphalt (fell about a foot) breaking the already marginal flaps switch. Somehow in opening it, which I have done a dozen times before, this time I made it not turn back on. I somehow fixed that, but the switch is still boffo.

Thats just great. Took it apart and found I wasn't going to be able to fix the switch. Found out the usually awesome Horizon Hobby/Spektrum customer service form doesn't exist any more (it creates and email), and phone in support wait was an hour. Ain't nobody got time for that.

Online found out I can solder in a new switch. Ordered one for $5, and will find out if in fact I can. No real time down and cheap. While working that out I went through the emotional wammy of my DX8 files not working on a DX7. I didn't want to rebind and reprogram everything...

While at RC Buyers I picked up some softer rubber Du-Bro wheels, about 1/4" bigger and a bit wider than the stock ones on the Sukhoi, and that became an evolution that took longer than it should. But they should make the landings sweeter.

So, a long day... Tired and cranky. But fruitful.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Gas problem

Took the Breitling 30cc to the field, half expecting her to start and run, but ready that the 3 months she has sat clogged her tweaky engine. I had no Stable in her when I left her.

Curiously she started relatively easy, and she ran with a bit of a high idle. I cast off her mooring lunes and drove her around the field. A couple of times despite her high idle she quit, and finally started acting fuel starved, tuning high, low the high, low then eventually quitting and finally not being able to start. I suspect she is clogged.

Brought her home to take the engine out and clean it again. At least she got to run around the big field.

Sukhoi SU-26 Successful Maiden

The conditions were near perfect. I was feeling it. I took the Alpha 450 up to practice and refine my eyes and fingers, to check my focus.

I preflighted the Sukhoi, convinced she was about to take the place of my Pulse XT as my favorite and GOTO plane. I wasn't nervous, I was ready. So, I committed and pushed the throttle to the firewall.

She rolled, and lifted off smoothly with precision. I fell madly in love.

I had 5 6S packs but realized I had not velcroed the 3 new ones. I didn't want them sliding around on just the strap, so I only flew two packs. I put her through basic flight maneuvers, and the wings stayed on. She made her attitude changes with the grace, power and precision of a ballet dancer. Everything happened when, where and how I wanted it to. I practiced no flap stalls, saw her right wing dip in warning, clean response to power. Sweeter with flaps. The first landing was perfect. For that my heart was in my throat as I learned she had a point where she would tip stall, and I was determined not to on approach and landing. Landed fast, no flaps. Photo op!

I made a few changes to the D/R, but kept the Expos, and took out the differential. To calm my nerves I took the Alpha up for a 4th pack. I returned to the Sukhoi, quick preflight, new pack, check surfaces, pushed the throttle forward to get her rolling through the thick grass and she lifted off perfectly level. This time I took her through some basic aerobatics, and tested her handling with flaps. Made a couple of practice approaches and a couple of full stop landings. Final approach and landinf with full flap, flawless. Love had turned to lust. I am smitten.

So the Sukhoi is my new mistress. I am recharging the Breitling 30cc ignition and receiver packs and will go back out to the field. If its still mine, I may have yet another love...