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How is this plane?

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Old 01-02-2004, 01:42 PM
  #1  
Hatty
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Default How is this plane?

I was wondering if anyone has ever flown the Hobbico AeroCruiser? If not, has anyone heard anything about it. Is it easy to fly? Is it durable? Does it handle well in the wind? Anything that you want to tell me about this plane, please spill it.

Here is the Tower Hobbies link to this plane.
http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXUG61&P=7
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Old 01-11-2004, 09:45 PM
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Dr Kiwi
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Off the top of my head, all I would say is that this aircraft is probably going to be underpowered with the stock motor (?direct drive), especially on only 7 NiMh cells, and that its wingloading of 15.3oz/sq.ft is going to mean it will have to fly fairly fast to stay airborne. IF it does fly, with that amount of weight it should handle wind okay. I can't see any way you'll get more than 10oz thrust from a DD 380 motor on 7-cells, so its going to be a bit like a powered brick to fly.

IMHO - I'd get a Slow Stick!

Cheers, Phil
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Old 01-11-2004, 10:56 PM
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Mikerjf
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Flies well enough, but not a good beginners plane, too fast, too small and too breakable. Best electric trainer I've flown is the Multiplex Easy Star, handles wind very well.

Mike
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Old 01-15-2004, 08:38 PM
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extra2004
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Default RE: How is this plane?

I put the plane to the test, and it fly like a brick. The 380 motor is NOT quiet powerful enough for that plane.
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Old 01-15-2004, 11:27 PM
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Alliot
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Handy! the hobbico aerocruiser is not a durable plane. It is also underpowered. I had one and I was very disappointed with it. I have flown both electric planes and glow planes for three years. The aerocruiser was my worst model airplane. I wish that I didn't buy it! Now, I am pleased with my slow stick and my avistar . Don't waste your money on it. For the same brand, get the hobbico superstar EP instead.
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Old 01-16-2004, 04:03 PM
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extra2004
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Default RE: How is this plane?

You are so right, DON'T waste your money, I have several glow planes, thought I would by something to play with in the yard. The worst investment I ever made. Wll! you live and learn.
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Old 01-20-2004, 10:12 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Ye be warned!

To all those (us) beginners who are reluctant to accept the FACT that the Aero Cruiser is a complete piece of crap, especially as a trainer, wake up. Yes, it is lucrative (1) being so cheap, (2) it does come with a video, and (3) it does almost look like a "Real" plane, but this translates to: (1) horrible performance, swift destruction, and a steady accrual of seemingly inexpensive replacement part shipping invoices, which, don't kid yourself, will cost you far more than any other option you are currently considering. (2) A video that spends 80% of its run time re-capping the assembly process, which is already excessively detailed in the instruction manual, and then about 1 1/2 minutes showing some 12 year old kid flying the thing with a big smile on his face, which believe me, will only compound your utter frustration when you don't achieve the same results. (3) Who cares what the hell it looks like when you are trying to learn. You will be crashing, there's almost no way around it. There is also no "Cool" way to crash, unless you can trot over to the downed plane, toss it again and keep flying. The much more likely scenario for the Aero Crusier, is it will wingover on you time and time again, resulting in spectactular head-on collisions with terra-firma. Foam goes flying and all you can think about is you have to spend more money on parts that cost more to ship than to buy, so you can take another stab at it next weekend. Stay away from this plane!

I speak from experience here. I am a newbie and I fell victim to all the aforementioned pros of the A.C. I'm working on my 4th fuselage, second main wing and tail set, third motor, second ESC, as the stock one would studder at moderate throttle, and I am very nearly able to fly it. What's interesting is that they give you 2 props, and I have yet to even use the second, huh. I did almost no research about good beginner planes, and have humbly learned my lesson. If anyone is smart enough to ask before they leap, at least listen to the advice of those who jumped sans parachute.

If you already went out and bought one, take the following advice.

Find a very large field to learn in, at least a football sized area. This plane is not very stable flying slow and stalls very easily, usually one wing stalling first, causing it to do a near half-roll, and head straight into the ground, almost certainly bending the motor shaft, and snapping the nose off. The solution, other than not stalling, because you are learning, is to be flying high enough to allow the plane to dive, de-stalling both wings, and then ease out of the dive. The large field will encourage you to fly comfortable at higher altitudes, and to not be in such a hurry to turn the plane. Most aircraft radios are good for nearly 1/2 mile, so let it cruise a little.

Hand-launch it nearly horrizontal, maybe up 3-5 degrees, and resist the urge to yank back on the elevator for at least 100 ft to let it build speed. This thing is a big fat hog in the air, and can't climb for its life, so take it slow and steady or you will stall, flip, and die. Also, resist the urge to add up elevator to your turns, at least to start. This too makes for easy stalls. Remember, this thing likes very subtle controlling. It's heavy and under-powered, a very bad combination, so don't think about any sudden or drastic moves. If your radio has exponential settings for elevator and rudder, set them to flatten out the mid-region of stick movement (Ususally negative %). Believe it or not, it wants to fly upright, assuming both wings are flying. When you release a turn, it flies straight, just keep your speed up, and plenty of air between the plane and the ground.

Anyway, I've rambled quite a bit. The point is, I found myself too far down the road of the cost-to-repair-and-continue vs. cost-to-abort-and-start-with-new-airplane paradox to turn back. I am finally near (I think) the end of the tunnel and am again excited about the light, but hope is a dangerous thing. I've beat my head, and plane, into the ground trying to learn/teach myself to fly. It's not impossible with this plane, but it sure as hell could have been easier and cheaper. Good luck!
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Old 01-20-2004, 10:36 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Thanks everyone for the opinions. I just awnted to see what everyone had to say about this plane. I actually have one but I wanted to see if eveyone was as mad as I was. After about the fourth flight, the rudder pushrod got caught in the styrofoam and caused it to get into a deadly spiral. Good thing though was that it was covered on the warranty. Then, when I got the replacement plane a new problem arose. The speed control doesn't want to go to neutral. So now they want me to send that back. It is making me very mad.

But I have to agree with everyone when they say that it flies like cr*p. It is very fast and does not want to land, even though it doesn't want to climb either. But after I total the plane (which I hope I don't), I will use the electonics for a plane that I will create.

Hey Casey, how many times have you flown it? Can you give me any tips to landing this beast? Can you retrofit it to land on grass? It just seems like every time I go to land, I get extremely nervous and carelessly risk the plane.

Dang, I just hope my plane doesn't arrive at the same fate as yours did. I'm sorry about that. I know the crashes suck.
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Old 01-21-2004, 11:41 AM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

The plane does have one saving grace, its got real radio gear in it. If you want to save yourself a lot of grief get an Easy Star ($63) and put the radio gear in that.

Mike
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Old 01-21-2004, 01:07 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

The only problem is that I have a Skyport 4 radio with standard servos. There is not many, if any, planes that I will be able to use it on. Do you know of any slow-flight/park flyer airplanes that are very easy to control that use standard servos and a 7 channel reciever?
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Old 01-21-2004, 05:04 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Easy Star will handle that setup no problem, just have to dig a bigger hole for the servos.

Mike
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Old 01-21-2004, 06:46 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Are we thinking of the same Easy Star? This is the one I found - http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXFRU7&P=7. If this is the plane, then how can you go from a micro servo to a standard servo? Not that I am saying that your wrong. It just seems like it is a little plane for a standard servo.
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Old 01-21-2004, 08:48 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Hey Hatty,

Well, I can't say that I sit comfortably in a position to give advice on landing this sucker (A.C), but I have brought it down in one piece a few times. It's a tough ballance for me as a newbie. I want a nice smooth surface so I can land, but something a bit more forgiving for the type of landing (Nose down) that I've been doing most often. The park I've been flying in is one of those multi-purpose schoolyard deals, used for soccer, football, softball, etc... but is not so booked that I seem to get lucky 80% of the time and have it to myself (Saves embarrassment). The softball field infield is a "Skins," all clay, surface and is situated such that I can approach/attempt pointing upwind and over grass. If I'm coming in a bit hot, I can usually abort, or hold out for the softer surface. If all looks well, I can catch the stretch of clay I'm lined up for. The plane rolls good enough on the surface.

Things that I have been doing to try and help the case: As I mentioned earlier, I ended up buying and after-market ESC (Watt-age 15A) to solve a speed glitch problem, which it did. The other added benefit, which I didn't think of as a pro at the time, is that the auto cut-off feature can be reset during flight (No little red button). It's kind of hard thinking of so many things when anything goes wrong, but a little extra juice on final apprach is handy. I try very hard not to do "dead stick" landings, as it takes a piece of crap flyer and turns it into a piece of crap stone. So, if my timer lies to me and I end up dead, hopefully high enough to affect directionality, I can pull the throttle to neutral, and leave it there until I need a little kick. The battery pack will ballance the residual charge and come up above the cut-off threshold, as long as you don't floor it when you kick it back on. It does help to stay horizontal during an otherwise dead landing.

As for grass mods, your guess is as good as mine. I know bigger wheels are always better, but I can't imagine what the extra payload would do to the flight characteristics. Longer wire-type gear like what is provided, with bigger wheels might do it, as long as the grass was pretty short, and the wheels didn't function like directional air-brakes. Then again, I tend to bounce my landings pretty good and longer wire might just flip me prop-side. Just some thoughts, I'm with you on the "Learn as you go" thing, and hopefully won't go broke in the process. Good luck!
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Old 01-21-2004, 10:04 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

Yeah Casey, I am in the same boat as you are about flying when no one is around. The last time I flew, or the time i totaled it, ther was a few people around who were smiling when I crashed it. I guess they didnt knwo how much these things cost, otherwise they would have been open-mouthed with shock like I was.
But when the wind calms down and people are not around, which is very rare, I can bring my plane up. The place that I fly is kind of like yours. It is behind a school that has a large parking lot and two nearby baseball fields. The lightposts can be a problem sometimes, but I somehow avoid them.
I have learned a few things out of this experience, however. One is that I will always come onto this forum before I buy anything r/c related. The second is that I will never buy from Hobbico again unless The come out with an outstanding flier that everyone praises and that I have flown before. The final is that I will spend a lot more time checking and double checking the plane I want before I buy it. R/C costs too much to just throw money at crappy products. I guess that is what Hobbico doesn't understand. You make a good plane and the customer comes back to you for another. You make a crappy one like the AERO CRUISER, then the customer will have no other choice but to go to a better R/C aircraft manufacturer like Great Planes.

Damn I hope someone at Hobbico reads this. This forum cant even begin to describe my frustration.
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Old 01-21-2004, 11:29 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

That's it. Definitely doesn't need the standard servo's but it will work with them and will more than carry the extra weight. Servo's sit in pockets on the outside of the fuse, under the wing. Two minute job to open up the pocket with a Dremel to fit the larger servo.

Mike
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Old 01-28-2004, 03:15 PM
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Default RE: How is this plane?

I can fly the Aero Crusier
But I need to made some modifications to the plane
1.- you need a good Charger , I use TRITON
2.- you need to change the motor for another 400 ( I use Graupter SPEED 400 6V hobby lobby $9.50)
3.- change the servos , the actual servos are too large and heavy, I use Hitec HS-55S Servo Economy Sub Micro S/JR/Z ( The areo crusier comes with adaptors for this servos)
4.- Change the speed control, I use Great Planes ElectriFly C-20 Mini High Freq ESC w/BEC

now the plane can fly

Good luck

Alejandro
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