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  1. #226

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    I am really getting tired of this. I explained in my letter that I wanted the new retracts. Now I haven't a clue what I have. Once again I am greatly disappointed with the company no matter that some of you think that Hobbico is the greatest since sliced bread.

  2. #227
    MinnFlyer's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Maybe it's the same mold but they're using stronger material?
    Mike B. AMA# 42400 www.gettingairborne.com
    Ultra Sport Brotherhood #2 - Waco Brother #188 - Cub Brother #2

    \"Those are my principles. If you don’t like them, I have others.\" - Groucho Marx

  3. #228
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    I don't see why Top Flite or Hobbico do not team up with Robart to come up with a metal case for the gear retracts. I know alot of people do not like the air retract and I in no way pushing any to go that route. Two months ago I found a set of Hobbico HCAP4000 Metal Case retract gears on eBay, so I know someone can come out with a metal case that will fit the Top Flite AT-6 Texan.
    TomTreese will make a killing if he can do this!!! I hope they did not send you a pair of the old gears or you will be back in the same boat!!
    I hope tomorrow we will have a good weather again her in the great northwest so I can fly her again!!

    Have a great weekend everyone, and remember, fly hard and play safe!!!

    Sonny
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  4. #229

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    On the Robart web site under Retracts for 5-10 lb airplanes are listed the 608HD and the 609HD mechanical retracts. The dimensions look the same as what comes with the AT-6, they are also a nylon body. Same retract?

  5. #230

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Hi Guys,

    I picked up one of these models a few weeks back. The covering looks great. I have not started to assemble it yet. This will be my first model with retracts. While there are many complaints about the retracts on this ARF, that seems to be common with many warbirds (check out threads on the H-9 warbird arfs). I'm planning on swapping out the stock retracts with mechanical robarts.

    Has anyone else done this? What are mechanical robart retracs fit this model?

    Yes, I have searched the thread but it seems most of the retract swaps are for pneumatic ones. I'm not sure I want to take that leap on my first retract model.

    Thanks and happy landings!

    Carl

  6. #231
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    I think the real problem with the retract gear on the Texan is not the mechanism but the case. When I lost my gear on the right and left wing, the mounting flange snap on the left and the right had a crack between the mounting screws. This is the area that need to be build up or make stronger. The metal case will take care of this problem. Looking at my Robarts 618 that are made for the Texan, the flange is thicker and last weekend I did a hard landing to test them out and they pass with flying color. Like I said before, if they come out with a metal case, the problem will be fix!!
    Like always, just my 2 cents!!!

    Sonny
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  7. #232
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Carl,

    Welcome to the thread. The Robart 608 & 9HD will work in the Texan. Just use landing gear wire that came with the stock retract and you will be fine.

    Sonny
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  8. #233

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Sonny,

    Thanks! This may be a dumb question, but do I need the 85 degree or 90 degree retracts? I assume this means the degrees between the gear up and down positions?

    Carl

  9. #234
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Carl,

    Go with the 90 deg and like I said before, use the wire that come with the stock gear and you will be okay!!
    Any more question, feel free to post!!

    Sonny
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  10. #235

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    That 609HD looks surprisingly like the gear in the AT-6??? and They are also backordered till late April/May??
    The robarts say glass filled Nylon construction. I don't think that's what we got with the AT-6. It was just nylon(plastic) not reinforced.
    I'm still going to use the metal box when and if I ever receive the replacements.

    THE SAGA CONTINUES[>:]
    Insanity: Keep doing the same thing expecting a different result.

  11. #236

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Sonny,

    Thanks! I'll pick up the Robarts.

    Carl

  12. #237

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    The 608 Hd 90 degree have worked great so far.
    You will need to file or grind the stock wire down to fit the 3/16 hole .

  13. #238

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    What about the 618ROBO. Here is the link http://www.robart.com/retracts/drawings/618ROBO.pdf

    How much more reliable would you all say that the air is than the manual on the retracts #'s 618 vs 608? I measured the dimensions for the Robo, the reg 618's, and the supplied retracts and they are very similar, although I admit that the Robo's will take a little fitting. Superspec how do you like your setup? Do you feel it is better than the 80 degree gears?

  14. #239
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    groundpounder17;

    I have the Robarts 618 gears on my Texan. Look back in this thread and you will find pictures of how I did it. It is alot of work to make them fit!! Also you have to make sure the air lines are free and not pinch. If you have the wings already together, than the game is over. If this is your first retract plane. If so, that go with Superspec setup. I am not trying to turn you away from the 618, but I want you to have fun with the build. Now if you do go with the 618 setup and need help feel free to post and I will do my best to help!!

    Sonny
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  15. #240

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    I have over 500 landings with my Warbirds with H-9 mechanical retracts and have never had a gear fail to go up or down or break on landing. I have had only one ball joint come loose on the 90* Hellcat gear in a crosswind landing and have had no damage till the AT-6 gear box broke..[:'(]
    I have seen more than a dozen air retract problems in the same period of time. They went up but one or both would not come down. Or the came down and didn't lock. In all cases there were airframe damage.
    These were on planes from 68" to 120" wind-sapn built by so very good modelers. There just seem to be more potential problems the more complicated the mechanisms are. Murphey's Law?

    On a $300.00 or less airplane I stick to the mechanical (<$30.00) retracts. But that's just one opinion.
    Insanity: Keep doing the same thing expecting a different result.

  16. #241

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Thanks for the info guys. My plane arrived on Friday and the covering was very good except for a few wrinkles on the ailerons and one small area where the covering did not meet all the way at a corner on the wing center section. I have decided to go with the robart 618s and have them and all necessary accessories ordered through tower. My ys 110 should be in on Tuesday. I decided on the ys because I have other plans for it if all does not go well with the texan. It will be a while before I get started on this project and I intend on taking my time, but I am very excited. I hope that the Robarts will take care of the retracts issue. Any recommendation on reinforcing the area? Fiberglass or graphite sheeting with epoxy? Balsa?

  17. #242

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Other than the covering and the retract problems, the construction appears very good. Other than Sonny losing his wing because of the gear I have not seen or heard word of structural failures. The YS is way too much engine for this plane but that’s why there are throttles on these suckers. Enjoy your new toy and good luck.

    Curt

  18. #243
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Hi Guys;

    I took a good look inside the fuselage and I have to agree with Curt, who ever is building this for Top Flite is using top of the line wood!! Some places I saw, I would have use more glue, but the joints look good!! Same thing with the wings. Look like they use a wing jig and top of the line wood. I have had some ARF that just made me sick. Little to no glue was use. I had one ARF that when the engine came to life to whole firewall came loose. Now all of my ARF get epoxy jobs.
    The more I fly this bird, the better I love it. Now if they just fix the retract gears and the covering, Top Flite will have a hit. Now if Top Flite still make the AT-6 Texan kit, this would be a sweet winter build!!
    Like always, this is just my 2 cents!!

    Sonny
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  19. #244

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Hey Lou.

    If you go to the robart web site you can order the struts for the air retracts.
    They might work in the 608 HD.

  20. #245
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    [&o] Well the retract bug on this plane bit me today. Sickening. I was accelerating for take off when the right retract failed and collapsed 25 feet into the run up. I wasn't fast enough to balance it out on the remaining gear and over corrected with the elevator (still working on quicker reflexes obviously). I've only been doing this 20 months and I still learn everyday but I was disappointed to be certain.

    In the end a busted prop, cowl, damaged wing (around the center section/retract), and light (read fixable) damage to the vertical fin. Oh, and the retract of course. This would only have been the 6th flight and I had no indication of a problem before now. I made sure to check them ahead of time as I inadvertently hit the gear switch when reaching for the flap switch on Saturday. I was basically stopped when it happened and all seemed fine on inspection at home and no issues on the ground test today before the flight

    Given the cowls are on back order every where (hmmm, maybe I'm not alone??!) I have time to decide which route to go for new gear.

    I bought this when it first came out and before we knew about the suspect retracts. Overall I love the plane. The plane just flys so well and is just too cool not to get it back in the air.

    Rather than sulk I just went home (live close to the field) and got my Funtana and did some 3D flying. When you fall off the horse, get back on and keep going!! It's a hobby. HAVE FUN!!

  21. #246
    jet22b's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Hi flyermark;

    So sorry to hear about your Texan.[] This plane is a joy to fly, but, the gears is the only thing that is bad with this ARF. They say new gears are on the way, but still no due date.
    For me I went wit the Robart Air Retract that are made for the Top Flite A6 Texan and now I am very happy. Flew her 4 time yesterday and had a blast. Like you well know, this plane is a joy to fly. I had one of my club member who flew the real A6 Texan ask to fly my Texan and he had a blast!!! He told me the plane fly just like the real one!!
    So rebuild the Texan and have more fun. Like you said, this hobby is fun!!!

    Sonny
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  22. #247
    flyermark's Avatar
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Totally agree jet22b. I just need to decide on the upgrades or Robart. I saw your pictures and I am definitely considering that option. I still need to do the triage on the incident. Maybe I missed something in my check after the inadvertent retaction of the gear on the ground. I cannot rule that possibility out. Of course I have had to straighten the stock wire a couple of times. That may have also weakened the housing without me knowing it.

    Low slow passes are just awesome with this bird especially with full flaps, gear up, and the OS 91 ticking along at high idle. I like it too much, even with the concern on the retract strength, not to fix her up and get her back in the air. She is a keeper.

  23. #248

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    Wow, now Im gun shy to take this plane up for the first time. I was going to maiden it for the first time last Saturday but had some motor issues to fix which kept me from flying, and I was going to take it out this Saturday but after reading all the horror stories with the gear I thing Ill save some money by spending some on Robarts. Maybe Top Flite should change the name from Gold Series to maybe Copper, Bronze. Ill wait and change the gear. Does Robart or anyone else make a mechanical gear set that works good. I really didnt want to install the air system unless there was no way out.

  24. #249

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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    what is the cowl diameter
    thank you

  25. #250
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    RE: Top Flite AT6 ARF

    7 1/2" I believe.


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