Opinions wanted on airframes - RCCanada - Canada Radio Controlled Hobby Forum
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Old 01-09-2009, 09:55 AM   #1
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Opinions wanted on airframes

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Hi guys, I've been active in R/C for over 12 years , and I've flown a lot of aircraft in that time including the Great Planes Viper, Hanger 9 Sundowner 50 with a Magnum 50 on it as well as the Giant Scale Sundowner and countless other speed planes. Now I'm peeking into the world of jets and I'm not all too interested in going terribly scale, but I do want a solid footprint thats not tippy on the ground as well as a good performer I can have fun with in the sky. The Boomerang's don't do it for me, nor thee TBM ShockJet's, the Falcon 1.20's are ok looking, but seems to have trouble staying together at speed.... Yellow Aircraft has one called the Stingray. I'm exceptionally taken with that airframe, plus it only requires a fairly small turbine and I'm assuming the cost to be fairly low...

I'm open to anyone's feedback on airframes as well as where I can find a Stingray in Canada. Do these Stingray's come as ARF or basic kits...?

I'm open to anyone's suggestions...

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Old 01-09-2009, 11:29 AM   #2
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

Stingray is a bad choice for a first jet, it has 2 speeds, fast and faster LOL
It's not really that bad, but it is very fast and very small, that doesn't make for a great first jet combo.
If you are looking to stay cost effective and have an airframe that performs well, has great ground handling etc, I would seriously consider the Reaction 54. The kit version is a little on the ugly side but the R54 ARF looks great!

The Falcon 1.20 is ok from what I've read, but keep in mind, it is an airframe that is being produced very inexpensively in china and it is designed for a glow engine, turbines have been retrofits, I'm not sure I would want to risk my expensive engine on an airframe not really designed for it.

Are there any particular engines you've been looking at? Size of engine will really give a better idea of what airframes you'll really be looking at.
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Old 01-09-2009, 11:32 AM   #3
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

If you want a GREAT flying sport plane, that looks good, is solid (well built, flies exceptionally well and lands very slowly, very aerobatic also) and doesnt break the bank...

Aviation Designs Phoenix, with a Behotec HP66 turbine. Talk to Peter at ALtecare about a package deal.

The Yellow STingray is a hot little plane, maybe not a great first jet...

Andrew Coholic -MAAC #26287L

1/2A to giant scale, IMAC, SAM, R/C sport, turbine jets, Heli's...
if its got a wing or two and an engine - I like it!
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Old 01-09-2009, 12:48 PM   #4
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

Aviation Design Scorpion.
Hey Buddy, thats a Kadet not an Extra!!!
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:13 PM   #5
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

You may not like the appearance of a boomerang but it is still your best option. If you want to have a successful start in turbines, it is the #1 route to take.

You can always try something different, but if on your first couple flights you encounter problems, you will be discouraged and shy away from jets.

Bite the bullet, get a boomer and just have fun. Then consider moving on to other projects.

If you are deadset and want a scale looking airframe, get something that is proven and popular(to have as much support available) like the Savex L-39.

Stingrays, hot spots, kangaroo's etc are not great entry level jets.
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:40 PM   #6
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

The downside of the Reaction 54 is that, due to the down canted engine, it is VERY hard on the grass if you're flying at a grass field and you may not be too welcome for long at your field. The Boomerang series of jets are lots more grass friendly (less burned grass) than the R-54.

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Old 01-09-2009, 02:57 PM   #7
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

The stingray can be a 1st jet, as it almost was for me. I had very little time (1 or 2 flights...) on my Hotspot when I started flying my Stingray. By no means am I saying it would work for everyone though... My servo choice was less than ideal and I had a bunch of trouble with trimming the roll to center. I also mistakenly had my rudder expo reversed, which can make one heck of an exciting takeoff roll! That was on an 8U, and it sure got more comfortable to roll out when I switched it to the graphical interface of the 9C!

The Stingray is not the fastest by any means, but its attractive due to kit cost and ease of building it. My Hotspot can push 250+, but the stingray is probably unlikely to go much past 180 on the proper spec engine. That being said, the Stingray is probably one of the 'quickest' jets out there in its price range, as in agility and speed vs. size. As other have said, it can get small really fast, and from my experience it can go from flying a bit too fast to a bit too slow in a heartbeat. That's why mine is a hangar queen at the moment. I roo flopped it at about 6" off the deck and did a bunch of damage. Itís fixable and will probably fly again some day, but who has time to fix planes any more...

If I had to start over, I know a bunch of people are fans of the boomerang, but I still think that might be a bit too conservative. Itís a great flying platform in multiple sizes, but itís essentially a slightly heavy conventional aircraft with a turbine strapped on it and a huge fuel weight variation in flight... I might be inclined to choose something like a Bobcat or similar with a more swept wing design and a little higher speed. If you get a trainer that can land at a snailís pace, its not really giving you much of a warmup to the next level of an F-15 or similarÖ It really depends on the pilot's self assessment and this may not be the ideal route for all, but it would have been my preference.

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Old 01-09-2009, 03:41 PM   #8
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

Originally Posted by AJCoholic View Post
If you want a GREAT flying sport plane, that looks good, is solid (well built, flies exceptionally well and lands very slowly, very aerobatic also) and doesnt break the bank...

Aviation Designs Phoenix, with a Behotec HP66 turbine. Talk to Peter at ALtecare about a package deal.

The Yellow STingray is a hot little plane, maybe not a great first jet...

I am currently building a Scorpion from AD but almost bought the Pnoenix. This is a good choice:


I have been flying a kit built Reaction and love it's flight characteristics. Only complaint is it may be too forgiving even as a jet trainer. The new version as an ARF is sure cleaned up a lot but gained 4+lbs in the process and will not fly with a smaller turbine.

Used Reactions pop up all the time. Just keep looking on the forums. I'm with you, not a boomer guy.
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:23 PM   #9
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

Similar question was posed on RCUniverse, and I've copied some of the responses from some VERY experienced jet flyers:

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No seriously if you are a fluent flyer who can handle a little speed and weight, then getting into jets, even scale should not be too hard. In my experience ( which is not as much as some guys) it makes it easier when there are fellow pilots near you to help with things like installation, ground support, building techniques, etc. Planes like F-15, F16 are totally withing reach. HecK even the large Mibo is an easy plane to fly.
Some talk of getting a trainer first.
I think this is a good idea for one reason. It will get you used to the sights and sounds of the turbine motor. You'll get used to filling propane, starting the motor, cooling it down , all the things that go with normal turbine operation.
Then when you are used to this, you can dive into a scale bird and enjoy it with out being soo "new" to the whole turbine thing.

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I would stick with more of a trainer model for the first jet. Skip the scale for now, or that is what I would recommend.

First reason, it will give you a chance to learn the basic turbine start procedures in a model. Second reason is, you said money is no object, so why not have a sport/trainer model on the side? Third reason - it will save you frustration on your first jet model, from having to fiddle around with landing gear doors. Fourth reason - if you happen to have a hot start, (which I think has become less frequent now with the improved turbine start methods from the latest ECUs), you can get the model back in the air quicker with replacement parts, instead of figuring out how to replace an aft fuselage.

My 2 pesos.


-Ron S.
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I totally agree with Ron S.

Start simple and get used to the difference, because there is a big difference.
I flew ducted fan jets for almost 10 years then got my first turbine.
I totally cartwheeled that plane on my first landing. Later I repaired it and a few months later sent it into a spin turning onto final.

It's like starting all over again learning to fly.

Get a lot of landings under your belt then move up.

The Stingray is not a good choice. Kelly is an exceptional pilot, and even he had problems ( I still have the video...... ) It might be a fun jet to move up into, but is a pretty big step upwards with all the new things (and exciting things) before you.

For starters, it is tiny...and inside that tiny airframe, you have to install:
-2 separate pneumatic systems, their plumbing, 2 tanks, 2 valves, fill valves and various connectors
-2 separate electrical systems, batteries switches plus a multitude of servo leads and turbine connections
-a fuel system including a hopper, fill valve, pump, shut off valve and vent
-physically install the radio hardware, plus the turbine electronics, pump, and solenoid..
...oh yeah, it has an airbrake, so there is one more servo in the fuselage...

That is a lot of equipment to cram into a small volume. It can be done, but perhaps not the best place to start learning how to make it all fit, and work without leaks, loose connections, or interference from other components....

Whereas something like the boomerang series is wide open (The whole top comes off), and you have choices and options of where to put stuff. Troubleshooting (...and you will...) is a snap because it is easy to trace leads, lines and hoses from one end to the other.

Appearance aside, they are a blast to fly...you can toss them around like nobody's business....but more importantly, you will be tasting success rather than frustration. You will know when you are ready to move on....
There aren't enough days in the weekend. -- Steven Wright
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Old 01-10-2009, 11:29 AM   #10
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Re: Opinions wanted on airframes

I struggled with virtually the same question at this time last year. I would be a first time jet flyer who has a lot of experience on big aerobatic planes and prop driven speed planes.

I wanted something scale, the few local jet guys highly recommended the Boomerang (Gary and Marc). I was very hesitant as I think it looks hideous and is not much more than a sig 4 star with a jet engine on it.

I bought myself a PST panther but, listened to the guys and bought a Boomer as well to cut my jet teeth. I'm glad I did, although i still consider the plane ugly and it is too easy to fly, it helped me figure out the whole "turbine thing".

I had challenges with fuel leaks, fod etc, that were part of the turbine learning curve and would have caused me major grief in a 200mph plane.

The boomer experience has been fun, it still flys about 125mph or so and because it's a jet, it has a big wow factor at the field even though it doesn't personally do it for me.

I like that I can fly it at smaller sites and off of grass as well.

So, now I'm finishing up the Panther and am debating whether to buy another turbine for it, so that I can keep the boomer operational or transplant the engine.

If I did it over again, I'd do it the same way, i think learning the turbine operation is essential to success. Hope that helps

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