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ASM DH-88 Comet

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Old 04-18-2006, 09:24 PM
  #1  
Terbough Bob
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Default ASM DH-88 Comet

Well, it came today in a HUGE box that was about 5' long, 2' wide, and 1' deep. Enormous. My initial impressions were good, since I saw the wings and tail feathers first. However, when I got to the fuselage, I was not quite so happy. This plastic fuse thing they have going on isn't all that. Sure, it's probably strong enough and cheap as hell to make, and lets them add all these nifty details like faint panel lines and rivets, and some nice fillets between the aero surfaces and the main fuselage... BUT... (you knew that was coming, didn't you?) the overall quality isn't really there. Since there's so many little things that I like and dislike, I'll just make lists.

Likes:
Sleek design, very svelte. It looks much better in person; pictures don't do the design justice.
LOW weight... around 5 lbs or so for the bare airframe minus main gear and wheels.
Good fiberglass parts (engine pods).
Consistant thickness of fuselage plastic.
Carbon elevator pushrod.
Stout, laser cut wood where it's used with tight glue joints that use epoxy instead of hot glue.
Room for 15" props if one were able to stuff suitable engines for such a prop in the cowls.
Clear canopy and nose bubble lexan.
Will go like hell with a pair of .70 four strokes (they will fit).

Dislikes:
Painted parts look like they were Kryloned outside- fish eyes, dirt, thin spots, ect.
No primer used during the painting process.
Laughable hardware. Comparing this hardware to DuBro is like comparing Harbor Freight to Snap-On. That's all I'll say.
The rudder and elevator wires have control horns "welded" on. I use that term very loosely, as welding typically means bonding two pieces of metal with a filler and enough heat to achieve penetration, fusing the two pieces of metal as one. The "welds" look like a dang trained monkey did them with a propane torch and some .030 flux core wire. No penetration anywhere, splatter, one little tack on one side, not even all the way around on one side, and the tab that they pass off as the control horn on the elevator snapped off with about 2 lbs. of force. Oh, and the tab/ control horn? Picture the same monkey with some sheet metal, a pair of shears and a hand drill. Yup.
Landing gear. The tail gear has about a 3" unsupported run between the elevator (which they only supply two hinges for) and has a nice coil in it for shock absorbsion. How nice. Too bad they didn't do the main gear like that. Instead they enlisted the same shop that builds wrought iron gates to do their main gear. There is NO flex anywhere in the gear, and I doubt there would be even if you landed the full size DH-88 on these things. At least they give you a 4" wheel for some tire flex to absorb hard landings, right? Wrong. The tire is rock hard. Well, OK, maybe not rock hard... more like solid rubber tricycle tire hard. Oh, and I hope they stuffed a coupon for a free alignment at Midas somewhere in the box, because tracking straight will only happen when you load this thing in the back of your truck and drive to and from the field.
"Painted" canopy frame is really tape. Yes, tape.
Generously, they pre- slotted the control surfaces. Ungenerously, they used a butter knife to do this. The slots will need to be hogged out and filled with some 1/16" stock and re slotted.
The aero surfaces are completely sheeted, and while they're straight and light, you can see the seams between the sheeting.
Paint does not match the covering or supplied red spinners.


My biggest gripe:
Finish of the non- wood parts. The fiberglass engine nacelles show weave on the outside, and the seam where the halfs were joined is fairly prominent. The plastic fuselage, while I like the idea, needs to be polished a bit. The joining seams are more visible than the simulated panel lines and rivets. However, everything is straight.

Final thoughts:
It's a nice kit, overall and has some gorgeous lines. But is it a $350 kit? I'm not sure. Comparing it to a 96" Kangke Monocoupe that has a build up fuselage for about the same price, I'd say not. I've only the GP 182 ARF to compare it to, and that thing is light years beyond this Comet. I wanted a fast twin that looked good on the ground and in the air. This will fit the bill. However, they label it as a semi- scale kit, and while that's all well and good, it seems like they should concentrate on a better fuselage and coloring instead of putting "final touch" scale rivets and panel seams on something that's not meant to be truely scale. IE- it won't ever win a competition, so why bother with minute details when the basic concept needs refining? It will fly, and I suspect it will fly nicely, but it's the little things that bug me. I wish I could perform the improvements on it, submit my expenses, and be reimbursed, since I, as a consumer, am beta testing this thing for them. My main gripes are cosmetic; the structure is solid, which is what really matters.

My plans:
When I come back from the desert, I'd like to strip it and paint/ cover it black and metallic platinum with some metallic gold trim. Engines will be FS-70s, and retracts will be Robart 510s with Robostruts. With a pump, that's cheaper than just their retracts that they sell. I may add smoke because I think it'd look pretty nice to have two trails twisting around themselves across the sky.

Disclaimer:
I normally build kits. My current living arrangements prohibit me from doing so, and after a ten year break from the hobby and seeing how far ARFs have come, I decided to give them a shot. I don't expect to shake the box and have an airplane fall out, ready for fuel, but I do expect the parts supplied to work. For all I care, they could have supplied hardware and landing gear made out of the same plastic as the fuselage; it'd be about as useful, and when you're dealing with an ALMOST ready to fly plane and have to replace half the kit, it's like buying a full build kit and having to replace half the wood. Why bother? And yeah, I know the old timers used to replace half the wood of the die- crushed Guillows kits (I've built my share, don't worry...), but this is 2006, not 1956. If GP and Kangke can do it, why can't Global/ ASM?

If anyone wants pictures of specific parts/ areas of this plane, feel free, and I'll post them up for ya.
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Old 04-25-2006, 02:35 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Please post some pics - I would like to see the quality ???

Saw the full sale at Old Warden - what a beatifull graceful plane !

Tim
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Old 04-27-2006, 05:25 PM
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Terbough Bob
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

OK... we'll start out with my favorite picture first. The weld on the elevator control horn.



Next up is the tight fit of the laser cut parts. These are the servo mounts that go inside the nacelles. I am actually happy with these parts.




Here's the weld on the pull- pull horn for the rudder/ tail wheel. I'm unable to break it like the elevator, but it still scares me just the same.



Quality blending of the spinner line into the nacelle. Not so quality dye match.



Here's the landing gear. It's kind of hard to see in this pic, but you'll notice how the wheel isn't aligned with the rails. Also note the ridgid structure and farm- quality welds.




Paint on the canopy is really red electrical tape.



Hinge slots cut with a butter knife.



Thickness at wing tip.



Root thickness isn't a whole lot, uh, thicker.



Chord at wing tip. I guess landings will be a bit spicey. Please note the duct tape hinges are patented, and I've submitted my improvement to ASM. Look for them on future DH-88s!



Micro or $60 Hitec flat servos will be needed for the ailerons.



Nice soft balsa block holding the wing alignment dowel in place.



Fiberglass tube for the aluminum joiner tube. The fit between the fiberglass tube and the aluminum tube is very tight.



Looking from nose to tail.



Tail feather fillets in the plastic fuselage. They fit nicely.



Misaligned wing mounting holes.



You can see where the flaps and flap servo goes. Please note the hatch towards the nose. The color difference between it and the fuselage isn't a slight of camera.



Rear nacelle hold down bolt structure.



LG mounting blocks. They're slotted in the instructions for landing gear alignment, but no slots in the kit. Couple that with the crooked gear, and I'm not sure ground handling would be that great. Please note the solid glue fillets and lack of butt joints.



Here's some "scale details" on the nacelles. Notice how the paint thins out over the details, turning them dark. Many of the rivets are like this too.



Here's the best shot I could get of the visible weave and dust in the paint on the nacelles.



One of the nacelle mounting bolts bottoms out on the shank of the bolt where the thread stops, preventing the nacelle from being pulled tight against the wing. New bolts should cure this.



While I'm nit picking, there are some very nice lines on this model, this trailing edge fillet being one of them.



Here you can see the "scale detail" of the rivets and panel lines. You can also see the seam where the two fuselage halfs were joined.

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Old 05-01-2006, 02:58 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Hi

Well its he proverbial Curates Egg - mixture off good and bad.

I normally discard most of the hardware if it isnt a premium kit.

What are you going to change and what are you going to live with ?

I would like to do this in electric - no fear off dead sticks and you dont need vertical performance.
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Old 05-01-2006, 03:35 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Hi Tim.

I'll leave the pull pull on the rudder, but will setup a sturdier rod for it, and will have a seperate set of cables going to a pull pull tail wheel that's mounted to some hard wood carved to match the curve of the inside of the bottom of the fuselage.

The directions call for the outer wing panels to be glued to the inboard section, to which the nacelles and landing gear are attached. I'm weighing heavily the option of having removable wing panels so the plane can sit on its gear while in the back of my truck.

Dual pushrods for the elevator halfs, Robart 510 pneumatic retracts, and possibly a recover/ repaint job. Red planes are nice, but it's just another damn red ARF. I think its lines would look much better in black/ charcoal grey, with gold trim.

That's about all I can think of at the moment. I'm in the USAF and I'm deploying in about 36 hours, so don't expect an update 'till September or October.
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Old 05-01-2006, 03:20 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Hi

There were a few Dh 88's built - there was a black one and a green one.
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Old 06-07-2006, 04:01 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

I strongly recommend using the ROBART 530 RS 90 Degree for main retracts that are Robo-Strut ready and adapting them to use the scale struts offered by Hobby People (for $24.99) designed specifically for retract use on the DH-88 Comet ARF. I also recommend buying the ROBART air control kit and medium pressure vessel. The retracts offered for this model are of unknown manufacturer and my concern was finding replacement parts. The ROBART set-up I have described above is of much higher quality and the ROBART air valve is adjustable. I have this model and yes there are some issues that need to be addressed while "building" this ARf but show me one ARF that the advanced modeler does not have to modify. I have 2 Enya 50SS ringed engines in my model and fly off of grass. I give this model a good "Thumbs-Up"!! Not for the beginner RC pilot though. This model flies and lands "HOT"!!!
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Old 06-08-2006, 02:30 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Welcome Speedy-Gonzalas

How about some pics ?
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Old 06-08-2006, 10:57 AM
  #9  
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

I flew one this weekend:

[link=http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_3556583/anchors_4367705/mpage_4/key_/anchor/tm.htm#4367705]Another thread.[/link]

I also have one of my own and I agree with all of your disgust. I have not finished mine yet because of the problems received in the kit. The deficiencies are not only scandalous but DANGEROUS. Global should be ashamed. But once you fix all of their problems, it is a nice flyer.
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Old 06-28-2006, 05:38 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

RECENT ISSUE OF "MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS" AUGUST 2006 STATES WING AREA OF 520 SQ. INS. AND A WING LOADING OF 52 OZ/SQ. FT.! THESE FIGURES ARE GROSSLY MISCALCULATED!! THE CORRECT FIGURES ARE AS FOLLOWS:

WING AREA:878 SQ. IN.
WING LOADING @11.9 LBS. RTF IS 32 OZS./ SQ. FT.

MODEL AIRPLANE NEWS IS USUALLY CORRECT ON PUBLISHED INFORMATION CONCERNING MODEL AND KIT SPECIFICATIONS BUT THE AUTHOR OF THIS ARTICLE MISSED THIS ONE BUY A LONG SHOT!!! THIS MODEL WOULD BE A "FLYING BRICK" AT 52 OZS. PER SQ./FT.!!
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Old 07-16-2006, 12:50 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Hi.

I am glad you posted pics and your comments on the ASM DH-88. I saw it in the August 06 Model Airplane News and was seriously considering getting one since the magazine talked so highly of it. I miss that MAP no longer posts "Hits" and "Misses" comments in their reviews so I am glad you did. When I asked my local dealer he said he sold one but when the pilot took off his rolled just after take off and crashed. He didn't give me any other details. Considering its price tag I wanted to learn some more about it first.

I was going to use some Supertigre .51s or try Saito .72s. I have the ST engines if I chose to use them but would have to purchase the Saitos. The MAP article used Magnum .52s with 11x6s and said that was ample power with its flight test weight at 11.9 lb. I don't have experience with the Magnum 4 strokes but my biggest concern would be that if an engine did quit I would want to make sure that the one engine left would have enough power to keep it flying. Since their largest rated 2 stroke is a .40 I'd guess you would be borderline with such a small engine in an engine out situation, especially if it was a little windy.





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Old 07-16-2006, 03:40 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

I thought I would provide info on the nacelle firewall measurement if it might help.

From the firewall to the nose ring it s 4 3/16 inches.

I chose the YS 63 for mine and it is 97.5mm from back of the motor to the prop hub. It is a bit hard to see in the picture attached but there is about 1/8" or less from the back of the motor (throttle arm) to the engine mount bolts and that leaves about 1/8-3/16 sticking out from the nose ring.

A Du-Bro spinner that is set back will eliminate most of the gap in the front.
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Old 07-16-2006, 08:53 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

TCBLightning

I think with those YS63s your going to melt that nose lite. WOW That's a lot of power for this bird. I have a YS 53 and flew it in a 70" Tigermoth with authority.

One word of caution on this DH88. The retracts offered with this plane look great although way stronger than the structure they mount into and the offered dual struts appear to be deadly. There is no way to stop them from rotating left and right. They are attached by means of one shaft held into the retract with two Allen ( grub ) screws. Then the strut is held to the shaft by one nut and an aluminum spacer. If the nut is tightened too much it will overpower the the grub screws and pull the shaft out. The springs and the slides of the struts binds when pressure is applied. The same pressure that landing loads could cause! This plane will not be able to sustain too much impact . I'm strongly considering going with a single robart strut. Scale looks be damned. It's better in my mind than taking a chance at destroying the plane. I've still not finished mine and I have the first one that came into the Hobby People in my area.

I installed a pair of older OS 40fsr's While they won't be nearly as powerful as your 63's they should be adequate. I had them in a 60 size Super Sportster I had converted to a twin with nosewhell retracts. It was fairly fast! Sold the airframe but kept those engines!
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Old 07-17-2006, 08:37 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Hi Guys,

A friend of mine is getting ready to build his Comet which will be electric powered. He is planning on using 2 PJS 3D 3000 Brushless Outrunner Motors, 2 MGM TMM 9032-3 Expert ESCs, 2 Poly RC 5000mAh 4s Lipo battery packs and 60amp bullet connectors.
I will notify him of this thread and maybe he can give a progress report.



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Old 07-17-2006, 03:12 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Sure! Welcome aboard
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Old 08-05-2006, 02:49 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

It seesm there is a bit of post regarding this model!
I purchased one couple weeks ago and yep I have the same issues, the elevator control horn is a "DO NOT USE", I made my own. I modified the rudder/tail wheel control setup by cutting the wire below the pull/pull horn and glued a plate with a bushing to support the shaft, it does make a difference! As the tail wheel goes I bolted a dubro setup on the same plate as mentionned for the rudder pull/pull support and ran a control rod to a micro servo. that way I get independant control of the tail wheel. Not sure about the durability of the plastic fuselage but sure it gives a nice amount of space to setup the electronics, also I was looking at the nose cone and thought that this thing could use a functionnal landing light so this is what I did. Went to Home Depot And got a $2.00 flash light, cut the front-end and glued it in the nose, replaced the light bulb with a Delwatt 9V spare instead, wired a switch with a 9V battery I got the thing controled with a micro servo "et Voila!". For the gear I bought the ASM gear also not sure about the durability but the set does look reliable, since the full scale has a strut on each side of the wheels I went on and machined my own and functionnal semi-scale struts, does looks nice! at last I modified the way the flaps are actuated, I didn't like the servo showing underneath the fuselage so I opened couple slots inside the flaps bay, installed a G10 made horn on each flap and setup a servo on the wing.
I setup two OF 70 FS and yep they do fit, Also I use 9channel: ailerons, elevators,independant throttle(2ch), rudder, gear, flaps, landing light, tail wheel steering.
It is a nice plane and like many other ARF saving on production cost might take over quality and reliability but still that elevator horn is a "DO NOT USE"
Bruno
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Old 08-17-2006, 11:06 AM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

hi Guys,

Over here in Australia the brand is "Awesome RC" and it seems to be the exact same kit. I agree with pretty much everything about the hardware including the elevator control which I did the bend till it breaks test on also. I have been stewing on a good idea for the rudder/tailwheel assembly which you guys have provided thanks, I just couldn't bring myself to use the system they include. Apart from that, if your instruction manual is anywhere as vague as mine than as far as installing the tailwheel bracket/pull pull system, it shows a pixelised picture and saying "install the tailwheel/pull pull system" and thats it.

I have 2 OS46AX engines for mine which I have used genuine OS alloy mounts and JTEC 6-32 vibration isolators which just so happen to give the correct spinner spacing I required. Loving all the hardware provided thus far I also changed the included spinners for 2 polished alloy spinners, after all, semi scale to me means I can change bits so I think it looks better, right? I mounted Hitec HS-81 servos for the throttles and neatly fitted Dubro 10 oz fuel tanks in with them.

When I opened the box and saw the fuse, the first thing I thought was "great, a fibreglass fuse" but was pretty disappointed when I looked a little closer. I went with the retracts provided as an optional extra, which are a bit average also and even with predrilled holes I managed to snap the heads off 2 of the mounting screws before they had made it "home" against the retract unit.

In summary thus far I guess that, as an ARF, semi scale is as per normal is best described by doing the static judging while your doing a flypast, I went for the Comet as she has some very sweet curves and just looks hot. As I opened the box and removed the major parts, I might as well have tipped the rest into the bin as I don't think I have used any of the included hardware yet. They should have sent the instructions in chinese and got infants to draw pictures for them as that would have been more informative. It will be good to see her in the air and at "semiscale" distance
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Old 08-19-2006, 06:24 AM
  #18  
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Strewth, Its not the glowing reports I was hoping to hear on this model. I went ahead and orderd one on the strength of the report in the August Model aeroplane news, and the quality of the Pitts special I built last month. I also ordered the optional retracts, as they were supposed to have been made by the same people. I really hope it is of the same quality as the pitts, but it looks like I might be disappointed. [&o]
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Old 08-23-2006, 10:58 PM
  #19  
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

One option to prevent rotation. Ali-block spacer.

Eric.

ORIGINAL: fgpierce

TCBLightning

I think with those YS63s your going to melt that nose lite. WOW That's a lot of power for this bird. I have a YS 53 and flew it in a 70" Tigermoth with authority.

One word of caution on this DH88. The retracts offered with this plane look great although way stronger than the structure they mount into and the offered dual struts appear to be deadly. There is no way to stop them from rotating left and right. They are attached by means of one shaft held into the retract with two Allen ( grub ) screws. Then the strut is held to the shaft by one nut and an aluminum spacer. If the nut is tightened too much it will overpower the the grub screws and pull the shaft out. The springs and the slides of the struts binds when pressure is applied. The same pressure that landing loads could cause! This plane will not be able to sustain too much impact . I'm strongly considering going with a single robart strut. Scale looks be damned. It's better in my mind than taking a chance at destroying the plane. I've still not finished mine and I have the first one that came into the Hobby People in my area.

I installed a pair of older OS 40fsr's While they won't be nearly as powerful as your 63's they should be adequate. I had them in a 60 size Super Sportster I had converted to a twin with nosewhell retracts. It was fairly fast! Sold the airframe but kept those engines!
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Old 08-23-2006, 11:04 PM
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

A two piece tailwheel assembly makes life a lot easier. Needed a ply plate to support the load from the pull-pul wires.

Eric.

ORIGINAL: flyingchef

It seesm there is a bit of post regarding this model!
I purchased one couple weeks ago and yep I have the same issues, the elevator control horn is a "DO NOT USE", I made my own. I modified the rudder/tail wheel control setup by cutting the wire below the pull/pull horn and glued a plate with a bushing to support the shaft, it does make a difference! As the tail wheel goes I bolted a dubro setup on the same plate as mentionned for the rudder pull/pull support and ran a control rod to a micro servo. that way I get independant control of the tail wheel. Not sure about the durability of the plastic fuselage but sure it gives a nice amount of space to setup the electronics, also I was looking at the nose cone and thought that this thing could use a functionnal landing light so this is what I did. Went to Home Depot And got a $2.00 flash light, cut the front-end and glued it in the nose, replaced the light bulb with a Delwatt 9V spare instead, wired a switch with a 9V battery I got the thing controled with a micro servo "et Voila!". For the gear I bought the ASM gear also not sure about the durability but the set does look reliable, since the full scale has a strut on each side of the wheels I went on and machined my own and functionnal semi-scale struts, does looks nice! at last I modified the way the flaps are actuated, I didn't like the servo showing underneath the fuselage so I opened couple slots inside the flaps bay, installed a G10 made horn on each flap and setup a servo on the wing.
I setup two OF 70 FS and yep they do fit, Also I use 9channel: ailerons, elevators,independant throttle(2ch), rudder, gear, flaps, landing light, tail wheel steering.
It is a nice plane and like many other ARF saving on production cost might take over quality and reliability but still that elevator horn is a "DO NOT USE"
Bruno
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Old 11-01-2006, 01:11 PM
  #21  
randallcrouch
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

i'm in the final assembly stage of my DH-88, and i'm needing some ideas for like the placement of my retracts' air tank and valve system, 1 battery for my receiver and 1 for my lighting system (4.8v). i have on-board glow igniters from RAM; will they fit in the engine nestles or is it better to put them in the fuse? is this plane tail or nose heavy !QUOT!out the box!QUOT! (with no extra accessories)? should i plan on placing items toward the front or more to the back?

someone please help.

Randy
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Old 12-05-2006, 01:34 AM
  #22  
kev71h
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

subscribe.

I have mine in my garage. I just got the suggested Landing gear and scale gear. I think Robart makes them(?)

The Friggin landing gear cost me a small fortune at almost 250 bucks
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Old 07-06-2007, 11:56 PM
  #23  
TexasAirBoss
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

Well, its been a while since you guys were talking about this kit. I was playing with the Comet on the MicroSoft sim. I fell in love with the plane and now I'm considering one. So, after you've had your ASM Comets for a while, what do you think of them ??
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Old 07-07-2007, 08:17 AM
  #24  
Cyclic Hardover
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

FYI, I am building the P-61 Black Widow for a friend. I'm sure you've noticed what this is made of but i would not leave this laying around in the direct sun.

He also has your plane and flys very well.
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Old 07-07-2007, 08:47 AM
  #25  
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Default RE: ASM DH-88 Comet

A friend aslo has the Black Widow converted to electric and says that it flies great I do not know how he powered it, tho...

Jerry
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