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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
THE MINI 3D FLIES!

Well, it finally happened, so here is the TailTwister first flight impressions report.

Weather UGLY, wind 15ish mph, gusting, and spatters of rain.

First off, the 25LA has had a couple of tanks through it here at home, and then 2 more at the field today, while I flew, and subsiquently crashed, the Sledge. (That's a whole 'nother story.) The 25 LA was sounding good, but the crappy sky would not allow my tach to give me a reading. It was a bit rich, but sounded OK to go. This engine with the tongue muffler is the loudest thing I've heard since I sold my Rossi 53. It's louder than my Super Tiger 51 with the Ultrathrust Muffler, by far. I fueled up, and walked the plane out, as is has no stearable tailwheel.

At about 2/3 throttle and 15 or so feet of roll, a puff of wind pulled the plane into the sky. It was holding a steady 45 degree climb, and showed only a slight roll to the left. As the plane felt OK in the air, I clicked in about 3 clicks of right aileron, and the roll was stopped. I made a swooping left turn onto the downwind side, and backed off th about 1/2 power, and the tail dropped about 20 degrees down. That really bad feeling of test flying a tail heavy plane in crappy wind with a new and un-proven engine was starting to set in. As I flew downwind, I turned left again ending the turn directly in front of me. I figured I'd keep it pretty close. Everything seemed good, so I pulled through a wind assisted loop, still at about 1/2 to 2/3 power. The plane was all but standing still in the wind at half power, into the wind. I eaised the power up, and the tail raised a bit and the Mini was off at a pretty good clip. I banked 90 degrees and pulled full up. In a blink the Mini had turned around and was now screaming on a downwind leg. Another hard pull left turn right back in front of me.

Now, again dead still in the sky at half power, I rolled to a left rudder (canopy in) knife edge, and added a few clicks of power. The wind was blowing it around, but there was no problem holding a stationary knife edge. Roll to inverted, and very little down elevator held well. Another 90 degrees put me in right rudder (wheels in) knife edge, and it was just as stable. 90 more degrees completed a stationary point roll.

What the heck, pop'er up Frank!

I pulled to vertical and it all but hovered at half power. I pushed up to about 2/3 had it hung rock steady, but moving fast downwind. I flew back to center and did it again. Again, dead steady, but blowing away fast. On the third hover, I held it slightly nose into the wind, and it stood there at about 75 degrees up and 2/3 power. That's when reality kick me in the butt. I heard the engine surge, which is a tell-tale sign of fuel getting low.

I pushed down into level attitude and full power to get around, for sure, before the fuel ran out. I put the nose down and leveled the plane about 3 feet up. The Mini settled in nicely, and showed no signs of the tail heavy condition. Once in the ground effect, the pland was not affected by the wind as much. The engine died from lack of fuel before I could walk the 40 feet, or so, to retrieve it.

All in all, two thumbs up, for sure, for the Extreme Flight RC Mini 3D. The 25LA still has to do a bit better, as it doesn't really have my trust yet, which may actually be a good thing.

I flew the plane two more times before I managed to break it. I was picking it up to refuel it and grabbed it too hard, as it was now covered in oil. It was probably a good thing as I then noticed that the rain was emminent, and it was time to leave, and not push another flight out of the day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I cut out the damaged part this morinig, and the fix was pretty easy. The part I broke was the angled stick that goes from the firewall down to the bottom of the fuselage. I added a little more wood there to help with future poorly executed grabs.

I may invest in some skateboard grip tape, and put a piece on each side of the fuselage, right at the firewall to help grip the slick little thing. It gets sloppy gooey nasty oily with the tongue muffler blowing exhaust basically straight down in front of the wing.

My last observation was that I stripped out an aileron servo at some point. I think I did it after flying, getting the plane into or out of the truck, as in flight I felt it rolled very axially. I doubt that one aileron would roll the plane anywhere near the center of the axis. Anyway, I popped in a new gear set, and it's all good now. Perhaps HS-81MGs or even HS-85MGs would be better for all surfaces. I have one (85MG) on my elevator, and may soon replace them all. It's a sure thing if I come home with another damaged servo.

Anyone ever KE loop a Mini? I wonder if the HS-81 will hold under that much pressure?
 
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