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  1. #1

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    Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    Hi everyone! I am working on a senior project and was wondering if anyone has ever tried to convert a .40 size glow airplane to an electric. I currently own two glow planes but for this project I would like an electric motor so that I don't have to deal with all the "extras" that come with the glow engine. I am thinking about buying a U.S. AirCore 40 Trainer and installing an electric motor in it.

    My problem is that I don't know anything about electric flight. Is this even possible? or do I need a smaller airplane? What I'm really looking for is an electric plane that has a substantial payload, is crash resistant and fairly easy to fly. Does anyone else have a better idea? I like the EPP planes, but they don’t look like they much of a payload.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Matt

  2. #2
    Moderator aeajr's Avatar
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    RE: Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    Take a look at the Multiplex Magister
    http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...&I=LXGZV2&P=ML
    http://www.multiplexusa.com/product_fs.htm
    http://www.bungymania.com/magister/index2.html
    Video series on a build using a AXI 2820/12 motor
    http://www.bungymania.com/magister/index2.html

    This is the basic power package - $50
    http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...&I=LXJCJ6&P=ML


    Our sailplane club president is preparing one of these to be used as a tow plane to pull up 3-4 meter gliders in the 5-10 pound range.

    I believe he is using one of the AXI motors and will be usign Lipoly batteries.

    AXI motors 2820 as used in the videos above in the Magister
    http://www.hobby-lobby.com/brushless-axi2820.htm

    You asked about .40 glow conversions
    Hobby Lobby recommends the 2826 for .40 to .60 conversions. Here you can get into the 80-100 watt per pound of plane for a 5-6 pound plane which would povide strong sport/aerobatic performance. If you want to tow, or carry some kind of heavy load (?????) this is probably your best choice
    http://www.hobby-lobby.com/brushless-axi2826.htm

    These can take on .60-.90 powered models
    http://www.hobby-lobby.com/brushless-axi4120.htm
    Long Island Silent Flyers
    www.lisf.org
    Eastern Soaring League
    www.flyesl.com

  3. #3

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    RE: Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    Hi aeajr

    Thanks for the boat load of information. That plane looks really cool, but I have a few more questions for you. First of what I meant by a substantial payload is only 2 or 3 pounds of electronic sensors mounted on and within the aircraft. Some of them will be external and effect the drag of the plane, but nothing like towing a 3 meter glider behind it.

    Secondly how will that plan sustain a crash. I am 100% sure that I will crash this plane more then once while this working on the project. Will it "bounce" better then a balsa wood plane? Thats why I was looking at the Aircore planes.

    Thanks for the input,
    Matt

  4. #4
    Moderator aeajr's Avatar
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    RE: Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    The Elapor foam will handle a crash very well. Not quite as bouncy as EPP, but much more resiliant than EPS ( styrofoam), and I would bet it would protect the electroncis better than wood or the plasticor that US Aircore planes use.

    2-3 pounds will increase the wing loading of a .40 plane by 40-80%. That is a lot. That plane is going to land very hot and have to fly pretty fast with a pretty wide throttle just to stay in the air.

    What is the purpose of this equipment? Have you considered putting into an e-glider?
    Long Island Silent Flyers
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    Eastern Soaring League
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  5. #5

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    RE: Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    I'm trying to build a modified autopilot as part of a training system for RC airplanes. From the pictures the Elapor foam looked just like styrofoam, that’s why I hesitated. I should have done some research on it before I asked that question. Sorry.

    I haven't considered any form of glider yet, because I have even less experience with them then electric planes and didn't want to start over completely. I noticed that you talked about the Multiplex Easy Star in another news group. What do you think of this for my situation? Is there room to carve stuff out to add more electronics without significantly damaging the overall strength of the plane?

    My estimate of 2-3 pounds might be little over kill, currently I have less then 2 ounces but I have only begun the design stage. I would think I should be able to keep it under a pound and easily under a pound and a half.

    Thanks again
    Matt

  6. #6
    Moderator aeajr's Avatar
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    RE: Electric motors in .40 size airplane

    Are you talking autopilot for autonomus flight? Or are you talking about a training assist system like these:

    The Futaba PA-2 PILOT ASSIST LINK AUTO PILOT SYSTEM - Approx $50
    http://www.futaba-rc.com/radioaccys/futm0999.html
    Manuals
    http://www.futaba-rc.com/manuals/notes-pa1.html
    Here is a newsletter review on the Futaba PA
    http://farmclub.torqueroll.com/NewsL...Apr02-3rd.html



    FMA Co-Pilot Flight stabilization system - $99
    https://www.fmadirect.com/site/Detai...489&section=20
    Co-Pilot with receiver $180 - may have extra features - not sure
    https://www.fmadirect.com/site/Detai...722&section=29
    Backyard Flyer Product review
    http://www.backyardflyer.com/BY/articles/co_pilot.asp
    Product Review
    http://www.fmadirect.com/support_docs/item_1040.pdf
    In-flight demonstration -e-glider
    http://plawner.org/video/copilot_2axes.wmv
    In flight demo - flying wing
    http://plawner.org/video/copilot_delta.wmv
    In flight demo - Helicopter
    http://plawner.org/video/copilot_heli.wmv

    As you can see from the video, they do not interfere with the flying of the
    plane at all. They simply add a level of self stabilization that is already a
    characteristic of a trainer. So if someone says this will interfere with your
    flying, they are wrong. That is the value of the videos.
    Long Island Silent Flyers
    www.lisf.org
    Eastern Soaring League
    www.flyesl.com


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