Hey RCU members! I’m back with part two of the Seagull Models 20cc Yak 3 ARF review! For those of you that remember, part one of my review covered the assembly and setup of the Yak 3. Because our weather this spring was less than desirable (to put it mildly), I split the review into two parts. Part two is the flight review – the part you’ve all been waiting to see! If you’d like to refresh yourself on part one, click here!
Oh man! She looks really nice outside in the sun!
Because I didn’t quite know what to expect from the Yak and it’s 6S LiPo power system, I decided to head to a neighboring club for the maiden flight. The Paynesville RC club has a 700′ grass runway, as compared to the 300′ runway at my local field. I just didn’t feel comfortable trying to force the Yak into and out of such a small runway. My friend Ross Hollermann was at the sticks while I shot photos and video of the Yak 3. Ross is an accomplished pilot and I trust him to fly anything for me! We had a great Saturday afternoon to maiden the Yak, during their club’s Blue Sky Fun Fly event. With Ross at the sticks, the Yak was easily off the ground and climbing out. The 6S LiPo battery and 80 Amp Hitec ESC went together well to provide a scale power system for the plane. Once at a safe altitude, the trims were adjusted to provide straight and level flight. Most of the flight was done at approximately 3/4 throttle, so if you’re one of those guys that likes the left stick closer to half, you’ll probably want to step up to an 8S battery.
With the Yak trimmed out, which required about 10 clicks of down elevator and three clicks of right aileron, it was flying quite nicely. Keep in mind, that this airplane flies like a heavy warbird – you’ll need to keep more power on that you’d expect at any time. Downwind turns were a little tricky until we discovered that the Yak needs to be moving faster than originally anticipated. Twice, Ross got into a tip stall situation in a downwind turn, but was able to recover by applying full power and flying out of the stall! (As I said, Ross is goooooood!) With the speed figured out, the rest was pretty smooth sailing. There’s enough power to perform scale aerobatics – loops and rolls are nice, and believe me when I say that this plane looks really awesome in the air!
One thing I forgot to mention earlier is that when I had the Yak out for photos, I felt that the springs in the stock landing gear were too weak. when I lifted the tail of the plane off the ground, the main gear struts started compressing. I fixed this by drilling a hole through the gear legs at the top of the sliding section and added a bolt through the landing gear legs. Yes, this made the gear rigid, but it also kept the landing gear covers out of the dirt.
Speaking of the gear covers and the dirt, when it came time to land Ross set up for final approach. The wind was varying a bit, and unfortunately, dropped just before the Yak 3 was to touch down. This resulted in about a two foot drop onto the main gear, which ultimately bent the gear legs rearward and the plane tipped forward on its nose. Thankfully, the tough fiberglass cowl sustained no damage, and the Yak will be ready to fly again after straightening the gear legs!
Check out the video!
There’s not much else I can say about the new 20cc Yak 3 from Seagull Models. It assembled easily and looks really stunning in the air. If you fly it like a heavy warbird, and keep your speed up in the turns, you’ll have no problem with the plane – and you’ll love doing high speed passes down on the deck! I love the looks of this plane! Seagull has another good looking, unique model on their hands, and its a winner!