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Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

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Old 12-24-2003, 05:53 PM
  #1
Mikerjf
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Default Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Just got the Easy Star in at my LHS. Talked my club into getting one to use as an electric trainer based on my experience with the Multiplex Teddy ( plane that the Easy Star replaces), It'll be left at the field ready to go in our fields lockbox. Picked the kit up Friday evening, first flight Saturday morning. Can't say enough about this kit, super easy to assemble (hardest task was getting the parts out of the bubble wrap), instructions are written reasonably well so a beginner should have no problems with it. Kits $59, RTF's $187 ( beginner won't have any trouble with the RTF). Since this plane will see a lot of use my construction time was a little long as I made the motor and servo's removeable(CA'd a S400 motor mount to the fuse and CA'd two pieces of Lite Ply in the servo pockets for servo mounting screws). First flight was in 10-15mph winds with 7 600AE's, plane flew great and required very little trimming, handled the wind very well and flies well in a confined space ( had it at a ballfield and kept it pretty much in the infield) flight was about 5 minutes, cold day and I think it would have stayed up longer but my hands were freezing so I brought it down. The only problem was the resposiveness of the rudder, at the recommended throw it would be difficult to get a beginner out of trouble quickly at our field (fields tight and unforgiving) and since we will be using it as a trainer I wanted longer flight times. Moved the rudder linkage to the innermost hole on the control arm and put in a 1650nimh 8 cell pack. The AA nimh pack works out great, I was able to put a 3/4 inch thick piece of styrofoam on top of the full size Futaba receiver which is in the nose and velcro the battery pack to the top of the foam directly under the removeable canopy. CG is on the money, set up like this and there's no question as to where the pack goes when someone else uses it and the heavier pack will increase the wing loading making it better in the wind. Got my first customer on the Buddy Box, nice warm low wind day, the rudder's a little too responsive now, but I prefer it like that for our field, plane maintains altitude at under 1/2 throttle so with the 1650's that gets about 20 minutes. After about 10 minutes we brought it in with plenty of juice left in the pack, only comment was "Damn that thing flies nice!". The 8 cell pack is a little much for the 6v motor so after we wear it out I'll put a 7.2v motor in it. After trying to help a lot of people get there "RTF" whatevers flying with minimal success and seeing them fade off into the sunset with a broken plane and a load of disappointment it was a treat to see an ARF that's supposed to be easy to fly actually deliver (and then some). I'd highly recommend this plane to anyone looking to get started in RC.

Mike
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Old 03-20-2004, 11:00 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I'm a newbie and have done a ton of research and pretty much feel this is the one I'll end up getting. I have a couple questions for ya if you have the time. I read through some of the huge 3 part thread, but that gets to be a bit much. I've checked into the T-52, Sky Scooter Pro2, Aerobird, T-Hawk, Graupner, Slow Stick, and many, many more. This one apeals to me the most because of the pusher and most importantly the wind handling ability. I know I should start out with no or extremely low winds, which I will, but once I get that under my belt I'll need a plane that can handle at least 5-10, it is always windy here and if I get a Slow Stick I won't ever be able to enjoy it. So here's a few questions.

-I don't need a 3D plane, I'm being realistic, but I also don't want to get bored too fast if I catch on this summer. I heard this plane can do loops, can it do anything else? I've heard it compared to the Graupners, which I think can do rolls, no? The Terry or the Tipsy maybe? Is it more reliable than a Graupner, because they interest me as well.

-how are my options motor wise? I probably won't use the stock motor, I have overly sensitive ears and believe it or not electrics are too loud for me too be around. What are my options for a quieter plane. I hear the AXI outrunners are quiet, but I'm unsure if that's because of direct drive, brushless or the outrunner design. I'd like something quiet, but as a newbie I don't see the need to spend big bucks on brushless. I know the brushless need a different ESC or receiver, not sure which, are those parts more than for the brushed motors as well? That could really run up the price.

-I also know that not all noise would be from the motor and gearbox (if one is used), is there alot of noise caused by the wind with this plane and would I have options to use a quieter prop with this plane? Does it benefit from folding props?

- I see you had some mods. I'm not the handiest, would I have to do those and if so, how tough? I'd probably want to run the 8 cell pack like you said for better wind ability and time, as long as they are compatible with my motor.

-if what I have mentioned so far is a possibilty I'd say this plane is for me. My only other concern is that they don't sell seperate parts for repairs. If I really wreck it than I am out another 60 bux instead of a 15 dollar wing like with some other models. Is it easily repairable? Does Graupner sell replacemet parts as they seem to be my second choice. I think they were slightly cheaper for the ARF too.

Thanks!

Anthony
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Old 03-20-2004, 11:17 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I saw this reply of yours in another thread and wondered if it applied to the Easy Star as it is an update to the Teddy.

"Pretty much depends on your skill level and how much you want to push the plane. My niece has flown her Teddy (basically a powered glider) in 20mph winds, it flies, but it's a lot of work. Biggest thing to remember is to not let it get too far downwind, if it runs out of juice you won't get it back. My nieces Teddy spent 9 months in NJ's Pine Barrens because I let her get it too far out and the batteries quit and I couldn't get it back. "

Mike

I also thought of a couple more Q's

-how slow can it fly as space is at a premium around here, anything close to the low speeds of the Slow Stick?

-can anything be mounted such as an airwars system? I'm thinking not because of it being a foamie and weight issues. If not can you dogfight in a traditional manner with the streamers. Dog fighting isn't my number one priority, but it sure looks fun with a buddy. A friend of mine is going to get one too and we think it would be a blast. The Aerobird looks fun for that, but I don't like the idea of everything being proprietary, could become a quick throwaway.

Sorry to bug you. I just see that you enjoyed the plane and have a practical approach.

Thanks again for your time!

Anthony
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Old 03-21-2004, 04:10 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

It'll loop, do sloppy rolls, tail slides, stall turns and fly inverted. It's much larger than the Terry or the Tipsy so it's easier to see and IMHO it's better in the wind.It's direct drive so all the noise is from the prop and the suppied Gunther prop is about the noisiest in that size, APC's are much quieter. The supplied Speed 400 is more than enough to keep you happy for a while on 8 cells. If you use the plywood motor mount I posted in the other thread you can stick in any Speed 400 size brushless you want later.

"Pretty much depends on your skill level and how much you want to push the plane. My niece has flown her Teddy (basically a powered glider) in 20mph winds, it flies, but it's a lot of work. Biggest thing to remember is to not let it get too far downwind, if it runs out of juice you won't get it back. My nieces Teddy spent 9 months in NJ's Pine Barrens because I let her get it too far out and the batteries quit and I couldn't get it back. "

The Easy Star is better in the wind but 20+ is pushing it with anything. The wind isn't hard to handle but the turbulence is. Close to the ground or near trees it's a bear but definitely doable.


It'll putt around at 15 or 20mph. It lands at around 10 and it's flyable in tight spaces, just be sure to max out the throws.

The wings got a fiberglass spar so it can carry pretty much anything you want to put on it.

If you go through the 3 long posts in the other forum you'll find about every motor imagineable on it and pretty much anything (cameras etc.) in it.

Mike
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Old 03-21-2004, 04:25 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Thanks much. So the motor isn't noisy at all? Is most of the noise from electrics from the gearbox and props?

Can I use a different prop size, I'm assuming larger would be better to further reduce noise in addition to switching to the APC like you recommended. I saw a video or two of the Easy Star and it seemed quite buzzy. I'd need to reduce this quite a bit for myself to be able to fly it, especially hand launching brings it so close to the head. If it's not motor noise at least I won't have to worry about changing that out to an expensive unit, but if pusher props are inherently noiser than I may have to look into the Slow Stick some more, can that one be used direct drive? How noisy is it stock? The videos of it seem quieter, but with video, you never know how sensitve the mic is, if it's mixed differently, etc...

-any inisight to the different motor designs that I mentioned and there noise levels, it would help me understand alot more about what I need to look for.

thanks

Anthony
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Old 03-21-2004, 04:27 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Do the props chew up wings during a crash on this design like other pushers?
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Old 03-21-2004, 07:00 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Hi everyone!

Total newbie here. Today was my first real flight.

The Multiplex Easy Star is pretty much my first plane.

-We'll ignore the very first plane I had which I gave to a friend who converted it to gas. I was a little ambitious and flush with cash that day.

-The second plane which I bought on a whim for spare parts for the first (which is currently being rebuilt to serve as an upgrade to my Multiplex.)

-And, my third. A failed attempt to assemble my own plane from scratch (don't do that without help when you are a newbie.)

Anyhow. I LOVE my Easy Star. It went together in about 4 hours. Yesterday, my friend and I took it down the street to the local high score just to trim it out.

Today, tho, I logged over 60 minutes of flight time. My first landing attempt went poorly and I slammed it into the side of a brick school building nose first. The plane held together like a real champion.

We didn't have to do anything to it in order to put it back in the air! Nothing at all. And, I hit the building hard. A little glue and some light sanding and you'd never know I ran it into a brick wall.

This thing is really easy to fly. I climb it up and out and can turn off the motor and just cruise around for a while.

When feeling a little more creative - you can run it over half throttle for about 7-8 minutes and over 10 and as much as 15 with trying to conserve. This thing will coast like a sailplane might (not that I've ever flown a sailplane, but I've seen the videos).

As a total newbie, I love this plane. I never felt like it would get away from even when the wind was blowing.

My friend even did a perfectly executed loop with it.

I can't compare it to other newbie planes because my first plane was out of my league and I underestimated it entirely.

I had a really great time. So much I went back to the store and got 2 more batteries and a new charger. It's one of the biggest entry-level planes you can buy, or so I am told. This makes it easy to see.

If you are a newbie and have access someone who has at least been around airplanes before to help you assemble and trim out --- you'll love this plane.

I'd still be outside flying and charging forever if my friend didn't have to go.

If I could change something,I'd like to have a better situation for the prop. It's just glued on. I didn't have any problems with it but it seems it could be better designed. I'd also prefer a servo tray rather than taping them and gluing the tape to the side of the airplane. Didn't have any problems with this either.

This is a great newbie plane. Period.

Vahn
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Old 03-21-2004, 07:31 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Props not a pusher. It's a regular tractor prop. Noise is kind of like a vacuum cleaner but not as loud. If the noise bothers you launch it with no or low power and then power it up, or put a set of wheels on it like the Wingo and take it off from the ground.

Mike
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Old 03-21-2004, 07:35 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I thought it was really quiet.

Certainly not as a loud as my vacuum cleaner.

I was up for so long and having so much fun that I had to strain to hear if the motor was still on. Even when downwind.

This Multiplex doesn't seem to make it into the top 3 list of best starter/newbie planes. That's unfortunate. I had so much fun today. Even my buddy who has flow big gas planes thought this was a great little plane.
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Old 03-22-2004, 07:43 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Glad to hear you're having so much success with your Easy Star (not surprised though). Learning's a lot easier when you start out with a great plane.

Multiplex doesn't do a lot of advertising here so their stuff doesn't get much exposure. The Teddy's been around since before the Lite Stick was first introduced, most people don't even know about it and it's still a better all around trainer than most of the stuff out there now and the Easy Star's a substantial improvement. Go figure.

Mike
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Old 03-23-2004, 12:00 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I only wish I had found this board before I put it together. I debated if an engine mount and servo tray could be built. I wish I had done that. I have a feeling I'm going to get curious what this thing does with an even better motor and prop. But, now - what can I do. The motor is glued in.
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Old 03-23-2004, 09:49 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Quote:
ORIGINAL: Mikerjf

Props not a pusher. It's a regular tractor prop. Noise is kind of like a vacuum cleaner but not as loud. If the noise bothers you launch it with no or low power and then power it up, or put a set of wheels on it like the Wingo and take it off from the ground.

Mike


I just thought it was considered a pusher since it's not on the nose. Obviously there's alot more to that designation that I don't understand. It's hard to know all this at first and without explanantion.

Anyone have any thoughts on my other questions? Maybe I should start a new thread perhaps.

Thanks

Anthony
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Old 03-28-2004, 03:39 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Now the big question is what is the upgrade path from the Multiplex?

I went back to the field today with 4 fully charged batteries. I pushed the plane a lot harder today to make it do what I wanted it to do rather than just flying in high, slow, and ultimatly boring ovals around the field.

I put my EasyStar into a few step dives and did some low flying. Can't wait to go back out.
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Old 03-28-2004, 03:49 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Quote:
ORIGINAL: aman_74
Anyone have any thoughts on my other questions?
No props to chew up since it sits behind the wing. You'd have to land inverted and a full throttle (and maybe even going backwards) to ruin this prop!

Quote:
ORIGINAL: aman_74
-any inisight to the different motor designs that I mentioned and there noise levels, it would help me understand alot more about what I need to look for.
Seriously. It's not loud at all. It's a very quiet plane.

I'm not sure which other question(s) were left unanswered; but I'm a true fan of this plane for any newbie and will tell you anything you want to know that I can. I am just a newbie and not much into the modelling part of the hobby. I like the flying part and this plane lets you spend time flying and not modelling!
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Old 03-28-2004, 07:54 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Glad you're having fun with it! When you can fly it inverted comfortably think about upgrading.

Mike
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Old 03-28-2004, 11:17 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Thanks, Vahn, what I was asking about was the prop chewing up the wing, I've heard mention of the wings moving on pusher designs and hitting the prop.

I know they aren't loud for most, but like I mentioned it's different for me.

I appreciate the help. I'll start a different thread or try rcgroups, the plane is real popular over there, so you might want to check them our for upgrade paths like you mentioned. It's so frustrating as a newbie. People are so tired of the "what's a good plane" question. So I try and do my research ahead of time and ask more specific questions and give details like what I'm looking for, price range, etc... to help not clog up the forums and save people time. I guess I am too detailed oriented and ask alot of questions, it's hard to get someone to take the time and answer. Not saying I don't appreciate any help I get, because I do, and certainly noone is obligated to write anything.

Thanks
Quote:
ORIGINAL: Vahn

Quote:
ORIGINAL: aman_74
Anyone have any thoughts on my other questions?
No props to chew up since it sits behind the wing. You'd have to land inverted and a full throttle (and maybe even going backwards) to ruin this prop!

Quote:
ORIGINAL: aman_74
-any inisight to the different motor designs that I mentioned and there noise levels, it would help me understand alot more about what I need to look for.
Seriously. It's not loud at all. It's a very quiet plane.

I'm not sure which other question(s) were left unanswered; but I'm a true fan of this plane for any newbie and will tell you anything you want to know that I can. I am just a newbie and not much into the modelling part of the hobby. I like the flying part and this plane lets you spend time flying and not modelling!
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Old 03-29-2004, 07:24 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Anthony,

I think you will love the EZ*. You are doing the right thing with your research and questions. I started with a Firebird Commander back in November and, although I learned a lot with it, wish I had done my research and started with something a little more interesting to fly. I got a Slow Stick in December and still love it. I got the EZ* so I could fly when there is some wind. It is very different from the SS in that it has much less climbing power and flies faster. I have managed some loops although they are large and have to be done with some altitude from a slight dive. One thing to be very careful with - make sure you have the CG correct. I spent a lot time reading the megathreads on the other site and set my CG to the consensus position about 5mm forward of the factory recommendation. The EZ* didn't fly well at all with that balance. I had to give it significant up elevator to climb and the nose dropped in turns. It even flew much faster than I expected (or liked). I finally set the CG to the factory location and it was a kinder, gentler plane with all the sweet characteristics mentioned on the posts. Even though it isn't terribly aerobatic, you will enjoy the challenge of flying it like a sailplane. Climb to altitude, cut the throttle, and cruise around looking for thermals. I find this very relaxing and it has a zen-like quality of communing with nature. Mild aerobatics with Slow Sticks and Aerobirds is fun but you have to rely on the power of the motor rather than natural thermal power. You will love it. If you haven't discovered it yet, FMS is a free flight simulator and Multiplex has an EZ* model for FMS on their website. It is great practice especially for those loops. I have links to these in my virtual hangar at http://www.knology.net/~suggs/planes..._RC_hanger.htm

Enjoy

Rob
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Old 03-29-2004, 07:41 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Thanks my man. I like that you mentioned the Zen factor as that is what I was kinda looking for, something where I can relax and not be on the sticks the whole time, since I'm new and not hardcore hobbyist, this should be a relaxing event for my spare time. If I get into it more I can get a more advanced plane and probably enjoy this one too still for it's different characteristics. With the CG moved can you get it to fly anywhere as close as the Slow Stick? I'd like to be able to fly slowly too.
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Old 03-29-2004, 08:40 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I can't give you anything quantitative on the relative flight speed of the Slow Stick and EZ* but the Slow Stick is definitely much slower. I actually find that the SS requires more piloting than the EZ*, however. On takeoff, the SS wants to zoom up to a stall and pulls to the left. You have to fly it through this - its not hard - just requires some attention. The EZ* just climbs out nicely under full throttle with little or no intervention. The EZ* also takes more room to make its turns and glides so well it needs more room to bring it down. I fly in a really large field but if I had fly in a confined space like a baseball field I would definitely prefer the SS. If you have the space, you won't notice the slight speed difference with the EZ* since it is so docile. You will really appreciate it if there is a breeze. I have easily flown in 10 mph gusting to 15 (that is measured at a NASA facility about a mile from the field so it isn't a guess). That breeze will flip a SS over just sitting on the ground. I'm sure the EZ* can take much more wind than that and I look forward to stretching my flight envelope in some higher winds. I love them both, mind you. They each have their charms.
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Old 04-04-2004, 12:29 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

I don't know if you are kidding about flying it inverted (it seems like it would be hard to get this plan to invert?) but I'll go up 3+ mistakes high and try.
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Old 04-04-2004, 12:32 AM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Hello again,

I don't see how the wing could move to hurt the prop on this plane. The design of the engine location relative to the wing and the fiberglass spar for the wing seems to make this a long shot.

I'm no modeler. Just my 0.02.
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Old 04-18-2004, 04:15 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

Just thought I'd update you on the progress with my EZ*.

I now have logged over 90 minutes of flight on it. Although I haven't made any mods to the plane itself, I have:

-Created a home-made battery pack. This gave me nearly 25 minutes of 1/2 throttle flight!
-Put tape around the top of the wings where it fits into the model. It was getting loose.

I also was able to fly inverted today. It wasn't has hard as I thought it would be. The stock motor doesn't seem to have enough power to flip the plane over. I took it up really high and put it into a steep dive and then turned it over. No problems at all. Wasn't nearly as hard as I thought it would be.

I didn't stay inverted long. About 5 seconds and then just put back into a dive and climbed out again.

Repeat 5x. Good fun.
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Old 04-25-2004, 09:29 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

The stock motor can do a half-loop easily in level flight to get inverted... If you use a 7 cell battery!
Hwoever, make sure the battery is not only attached with velcro but also wedged in with some foam otherwise it can drop...
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Old 04-26-2004, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

And it'll loop all day with 8 cells.

Mike
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Old 04-26-2004, 06:34 PM
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Default RE: Multiplex Easy Star, construction, flight report

the EZ star is a great beginners plane.My instructor is teaching me to fly using his I had my second flight on Saturday . He pt the plane up gave me the radio and walked away . It is a very good flying plane very forgiving not real fast but great for learning on we used the battery pack that cmae with and we had it up for over 30 minutes I have an Accipiter Badius stay away from that plane my instructor flew it first time out and it took everything he had to control it. He told me put it awat and forget about it. EZ Star for sure
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