I seen a housefly, I seen a horsefly, I seen a butterfly, heck I e’den seen a draaaagonfly, but I done seen everything, when I seen a lawnmower fly!
Dumbo, the original “whatzit” that could fly. In Dumbo’s case flight should have been an impossibility. How can an elephant…fly? I guess it wasn’t too hard otherwise no story. Take an object, er elephant, now stick some wings on him, in his case giant ears. Now add some thrust and gravity. Add a little lift and control to the equation…you have flight.
FLYINGTHINGZ MAKES NATIONAL TELEVISON! Once again FlyingThingZ flyz the airwaves of National television. In May of 2005 G4 Network (Video Game TV) took a flight out to PA to visit with FlyingThingz owners Henry and Spiro. Now you can watch the video clip on RCU Live! Click here to watch, or click the big TV to the left. For other FlyingThingz press releases and related articles check out this link from their web site. These guys have caught the attention of the entire world with their original and crazy FlyingThingZ!
When I first got into the RC hobby I took a look at the Sky Cutter, I thought that was right up my alley, something that should not fly that can fly. Sounds just like the Dumbo story. Then I looked into it even further and saw that FlyingThingZ carries and entire line of products of “thingz” that should not fly, that do fly. Just like Dumbo, they designed their airplanes (strange to call these airplanes) to make the impossible, possible.
I finally got too see one fly at an full scale airshow. There was a mid day break where all the RC planes came out to fly. Giant Edge’s, Ultimate Biplanes and lots of other beautiful RC aircraft. But then someone decided to whip out the Flying Lawnmower and the entire crowd got on their feet in amazement. No a $6,000 RC 40% Edge really didn’t do anything for them, after all they just got done watching Kirby Chambliss put on a show of a lifetime. They were more intrigued by the flying lawnmower much more then the big 40% Edge. I knew right away I had to have one and quick, it looked like a blast to fly.
As soon as I got home from the Airshow, I called them and placed my order so I could find out. It wasn’t just about getting the plane to fly, it was about putting the kit together so I could see what they were thinking in their design. Well I got it so now you are going to find out what makes the impossible, possible!
Sky Cutter .40 V2 with Green Covering Kit $129.99
Wing Span: 24.5″ / Chord: 29″
Weight: 5.5 – 6.0 lbs.
Engine: .46-.61 two stroke .45-.72 four stroke
Servos: 70 oz torque
Included with Kit: CNC cut foam, laser cut balsa and lite-ply, full size plans, step by step photo illustrated manual, landing gear, screws, bolts, nuts, fittings, control horns, nose gear and our very own self adhesive, precut vinyl covering material.
Word to the wise: GET THE COVERING KIT! Do not order the the Flying Lawnmower without it. I just can’t imagine cutting all the covering by hand when they give you these beautiful rolls of precut vinyl which shrinks to heat and ties in so nicely. It’s worth it’s weight in gold. I once asked the guys at Flying Thingz if anyone actually builds this without the covering and they said that sometimes they order it without, but most of the time they call back to order it.
- The most laser cutting I’ve ever seen in a kit. About 90% laser cut.
- Over exceeded my expectations on handling and control.
- None, when you get one you’ll see why
Not only is the Sky Cutter a great look and inexpensive kit, the guys that own the company are the greatest. Here are a couple of guys, Henry and Spiro, who are just the coolest guys you’ll ever meet. They were both born and raised in NYC but somehow wound up living near each other in Northern PA. I mean what are the odds of two families, both from NYC, both winding up in PA and both have interests in making lawnmowers, tanks and witches fly?? What are the odds of two families from NYC even wanting to move to move to PA in the first place be?? Well stranger things have happened I guess. Give ’em a call sometime, they are very responsive to their customers and give great technical support.
As soon as I got my flying lawnmower up in the air I knew I had to become a dealer. These planes fall right in line with our own (OMP) product line of planes that are just downright fun to fly. But seeing that I am now a dealer this will be my first and last review for FlyingThingZ, but it won’t be my last FlyingThingZ kit, I can assure you that. After all Halloween is coming, time for the Witch Wilga Flying Thingz kit. If you have kids and are in the hobby these planes are a must. Personally I don’t have kids, but my nieces and nephews beg me to fly the Sky Cutter every time I see them. They always ask me about it, and ask me if they can have it when they grow up. Of course they can, that’s what Uncles were made for.
–Thanks Henry and Spiro for producing these great kits!!!
Well this is my very first kit, I’ve built a bunch of ARF’s but this seemed to be the easiest kit to start with out there and I was right. This kit more or less builds likes an ARF then kit. There really is not a lot of building to do, just the servo housing and handle for the main wood parts and just piece together for foam parts after you cover them. You can see the contents of the kit are just a bit more then most ARF’s. Heck even the covering requires no ironing and no cutting! As you can see in the photos the kit is complete. All CNC cut foam and everything you need including the wheels with hardware and custom cut control horns.
The first part of the kit is to build the servo tray, not a lot to it if you’ve ever built a kit. If you’ve never built a kit before it will take you about 2-3 hours at most. It’s pretty straight forward as you can see from the pics, nothing tricky, just a box and a couple servo trays. All the parts are laser cut and just sort of snap together.
After the servo housing/motor mount tray is built the next step is to build the lid. Only takes a few minutes just to add the pieces that lock into the main housing. The tray lid is real nice. It comes off with one single screw and gives you full access to everything to view for safety checks. Covering the tray is simple, just look for the pieces that fit, place them on, over lap them, then add some heat to tighten everything up. You really don’t have to be that perfect when applying the vinyl, it shrinks real nice and tightens up like a drum.
The next step is to glue together the main gear blocks. Pretty easy, just glue some laser cut pieces together with 10 min epoxy. The main gear supports have holes already pre-cut for the landing gear wire to pop in nice and easy. Putting the tray on the fuse, starting to look like something!
The manual says to use a router to create the slots in the fuse for the main gear blocks. I just used a hobby knife and took my time to make the shape in the foam contour to the shape of the gear blocks. It was very simple and only took me a few minutes. Covering the main wing was real easy, just look for the biggest pieces. Just be careful not to keep the vinyl flat and not to gather up and stick to itself on the inside. Again you just apply, everything is pre cut to fit. After it’s attached just add some heat and it will tighten up like a snare drum. Each piece must overlap another piece on every part of the mower so that’s how it all ties in and locks together. Again and I will stress, GET THE COVERING, you will not regret it.
The fuse sides are pre cut coroplast. Once again just find the pieces that fit and cover. Before you cover it you should sand the part of the coroplast that will meet the foam with rough sand paper. You can do this before or after you cover it because you must remove the covering that butts up against the fuse. The coroplast is also attached with a with a few dowels which hold the dummy wheels on as you’ll see in the following pictures.
The control surface a simple, just cover them and counter sink the control horns, nothing too tricky there. To attach you can do it a couple ways, with CA hinges or tape. The manual recommends using fabric packaging tape which I used. Again, nothing to tricky, just attach.
The next few steps are the dummy wheels and dummy motor. The dummy motor is easy, just cover and counter sink a couple small dowels in four spots then glue it together. The wheels you must prep to attach to the fuse before you cover them. There are a couple laser cut parts you add on the wheels to support the dowels that counter sink through the coroplast and into the fuse. The back dummy wheels have a floating type design with rubber band that can push up in the back for harrier landings. This way they won’t drag. This is rather clever idea.
After that’s all done it’s time for the main handle. Pretty easy, 2 side pieces and 2 horizontal supports. Also a couple pieces of tri-stock to lock them in. Make sure you keep your angles as per the plans as this handle will give a significant amount of lift. If you add the area of the horizontal handles you’d probably come up with that of a 90-120 size plane or maybe even larger, so it’s pretty important they they are right on the money.
After that’s all done you attach the handle to the fuse and put the rest together and add the radio gear and final vinyl pieces like the dummy motor pull handle, side logo and wheels. This kit took me about 3 days or 20 some hours to complete. I believe that if I got another one I would probably be able to put the ARF together in 15 or less. Yes, it’s that easy. It was fun to build I just hope it’s fun to fly. We’ll see!
I’ve flown lots of planes in every size and shape. When your about to maiden a RC plane that has long wings, vertical stabs, horizontal stabs and so forth you think, “it looks like a plane, it should fly like a plane, no worries”. But I was more nervous getting ready to fly this then just about any other plane I’ve ever maidened. The reason why, was simple, it was missing a few things that traditional airplanes don’t have. But I’ve seen them fly before and it’s looks like it should fly, so lets find out.
Got lined up on the runway and ready to go. Full throttle and she’s off. It took a little bit more speed to get off the ground then I thought, but once it got up it was a sight to see. At first it caught me off guard as you can instantly feel the handle give it a high center of gravity. But it flew real nice, a couple of clicks here and there and it’s flying straight and level.
First couple flights I just put it through some stall maneuvers so I could find out if it had any bad habits and it really did not. It wasn’t flying like a trainer, totally different and hard to explain, you just have to find out for yourself. I can just say that it’s fun to fly.
After those first few flights it was time to flip it around. The control surfaces are huge and I’ve got them maxxed out on high rates now. High speed snaps were just fun, it’s snaps very axial, does not whip out the tail like other planes I’m used to flying, totally different and fun. You can really tell that the handle on the mower gives it that extra aerobatic ability.
Now I watched in the videos how the plane will do a real lomcevak. That’s basically where the plane will stop in mid air and flip over at near zero speed and travel on the same path it was heading with up elevator and throttle control. Most people think that a lomcevak is a any crazy move that involves a snap. But a true lomcevak is a really nice and slow graceful maneuver and the mower does them perfect.
The next move I wanted to try that I saw in the videos and was told it can do is harriers. Due to the large flat wing and thick airfoil and the handle that acts like a counter balance the mower is supposed to do some of the nicest harriers. Well it does and it’s a lot of fun. The plane handles better in harrier then about 50% or more of some of the 3D fun fly planes I’m used to flying. Overall, it’s just fun to fly, You can’t really explain it in words as it’s just different and that’s what I like.
Well I’m not going to bore you any longer with reading how it flies, just watch how it flies, that’s what really shows you that the mower is more fun to fly then to look at. It’s easy to fly, not a trainer, but certainly flies much better then you would expect a lawnmower to fly.
The FlyingThingZ Sky Cutter is a great kit. It was designed to be assembled in the shortest amount of time. Unlike some other kits, it’s not just a bunch of sticks and plans. There is hardly anything to actually cut maybe some tri-stock for the handles and balsa sheet on the bottom of the servo tray. Other then that it’s pretty simple and more or less a put together then a build. It’s a great first kit in a nut shell.
Now if you have children or like to entertain crowds then this plane is truly for you. You will get more attention with this plane then a 40% Edge or even a jet. It will put a lot of smiles on a lot of faces.
As far as it’s flying, again hard to explain. It’s flies real nice, nothing to tricky but very different. You can really feel that it does not have traditional wings, but it’s still really fun to fly and not scary. So if you buy one and fly it, have no fear it will fly no matter what your mind is telling you
Also the FlyingThingZ Skycutter is available for AeroFly Pro Deluxe so you can give it a try if you own the sim and really see how it flies and especially harriers!
34 Chatham Hill Road
Stroudsburg, PA 18360