Sunday, 23 September 2012

New Air One Electric maiden

Well today was one of immense satisfaction! The New Air One  Electric was maidened. Surprisingly a large number of us ignored the rain forecast and and gathered at a local easterly slope, Harrop Edge between Leeds and Manchester.

The foamy brigade respectfully gave way to us to launch  the New Air One Electric with 1/2kg of ballast (AUW 3kg) in 20mph winds for the first flight flown by Jonathan Wells. Pretty much from the off it was put into F3F racing style turns with 3/4 circuit rolling circles, well he was nervous not being his plane! What was surprising was the energy retention in the glide and you'd be hard pressed to say the folded prop made much difference in slowing it down. It really is a slippery conversion. At 3kg it felt very bouyant and Jonathan said it could have taken a lot more. There is provision in the wing and joiner for a further 1kg! The CG was a little forward but it looked very quick and more importantly it didn't bleed the speed which was what I was looking for.

There was no real need for the power train, the objective was to trim the plane. That will be another day but a quick spurt of power caused the motor to cut out after a few seconds. The ESC set up still had the current limiter engaged as a precaution so I guess we'll try again with that off and disable the Ubec and run the radio gear with a small lipo. MKS servos can now use tiny individual Sbecs to regulate input voltage which will allow use of a 2s lipo. The power set up is a bit more than I had planned and bench tests showed 1.75kw at 128a. For F3B electric I was aiming for 1kw which we'll fine tune later but for now, it will be fun to see what  it's like at this power and that will be for the next time now we have a trimmed out airframe.

Updated classic by Brian James (AKA Yellow Blue). Bagged foam core wings using PU glue and glass fibre 1/64 laminating sheet with co ordinates provide by Dr James Hammond using the Schwing section.
So all in all big grins from me and yes I flew too today, 2nd flight with my new Vampire F3F. Even more so to catch up with local fliers and one in particular, Brian James- He maidened a 'new' plane too. Its says Ridge Racer on it and older readers will remember this slope nut classic, only Brian got foam cores CNC hotwired using the Schwing section and bagged his own set of wings. Now at this size and bigger fuse it brings the design bang up todate. Looks like a prototype for the type of slope model we should bring into our range...Hmm!    

Monday, 17 September 2012

New Air One Electric Conversion

I’ve been itching to get this project to fruition ever since we got hold of the New Air Ones from Maslo of Acacia 2 fame. This is his new 3m F3F/B machine. It’s a HN ‘Sting’ section and with its light carbon wing panels and slim fuse I have been thinking for some time it would make an excellent Electric conversion, especially as I have an eye on developments on F3B electric where choices are really restricted to find a suitable model. Specifically, I’ve been searching for something sleek and so clean in the glide. I was not looking at big bulbous electric fuses which in the main most manufacturer E fuses tend to be. I ran several electric Skorpions which makes a great hotliner but the drag from the electric fuse and power set up slows it down in the glide. Yes it will always do that but something skinnier will do it less. So this is not a manufacturer's electric plane but a conversion done here at our workshops.

It's been Fu-Fix'd!

Front ballast tube is non standard addition. It carries 14mm square brass ballast approx 1/2 kg, so does the joiner and the rear round stock ballast tube. So altogether there is approx 1.5kg provision! 
Beautifully made, 'bigger ' 3m!
 The New Air One is what I would call a typical Euro quality 3m and that’s a compliment! It’s build extremely well and strong and most importantly light. The carbon wing panels weigh around 550g. It’s a ‘big’ 3m and all flying reports confirm a competitive airframe.
Sleek and clean

RFM 40mm spinner with air hole and 'nostril' air scoops in canopy helps this relatively high power set up breathe.
Several attempts got me either the power and ballast provision but not AUW weight or not the power. We did many Strega conversions and these are clean and skinny but even the lightweight version was 2.7kg on a 28mm can, B40 geared (around 700w), then when we got the power on a custom Neu motor and Kontronik gear box around 2.5kw it was heavy, around 2.9kg on 6s. Here in lies one of the problems sleek/ skinny usually means 28mm can motors and getting these to perform at 1kw+ is a push on all the components and even when it could be done you need either big lipos or lots of them.

What is needed is a skinny fuse that you can fit a 36mm can geared in runner like the Hacker B50. These are heavier than 28mm motors but they will give you 1kw + with ease and with good lipos, 65c, you can get a very light weight power train using small lipos.
B50 FAI geared on 6.7:1 Box, CC100 lite.

Thunder Power 65C 4s but only 1800mah. These I made up but 2s +2s pack joined in series fine. In fact small 3s+ 3s would fit too.

 As might now understand, finding an airframe to do this has been a bit of a holy grail, which is why I have been so excited about this model. We got a few empty fuses (no radio tray, ballast tube etc) and I set about converting to electric power.

MKS 6125 Mini in wing, bearing kit, 3mm bubble clear covers on flaps, flat cover for aileron, which also has RDH. It has the works!

Servos in tails are a necessary modification to help balance the model. Rock solid elevators using Fu-Fix bearing kit is a welcome by product!

It has come in at 2.49kg on 4s and uses a B50 FAI geared and set up to deliver 1.5kw+. Using just 1800mah Thunder Power 65c it should give about 30s usable motor run time. I will probably only need 10s maximum. Of course I have a strategy and a purpose for this model but it does mean it’s an unusually skinny Electric glider that could easily make a great hotliner on 3-4Kw+ running up to 6s. It won’t take huge lipos but it will be about as clean as you can get a 3m Hotliner!   

Electric conversion for the New Air One is just extra £20. (Fuse with CNC motor mount installed at correct down thrust). You will need to install servos in the V tails which is straight forward or you can get a full Fu-Fix conversion and build complete with 'nostrils' in the canopy!

New Air One Air glider is £975 including wing and tail bags

Monday, 3 September 2012

Hurricane prototype

massive joiner, could be off a 3m! 

Longer nose making radio installation much easier

Same aerodynamics as Jame's famous previous design

Our 'white ghost prototype'

CNC parts

Did I mention the joiner was massive (and so too the wing spar)!

CNC aluminium moulds produced this

The next Sloperacer, James Hammond designed model is nearly ready for testing! Here's what we have done to make what we think is going to be one of the best sports 2m gliders ever produced.