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Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

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Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

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Old 06-23-2004, 08:47 AM
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cstevenpeterson
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Default Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

Hi Folks,

I am thinking about buying the Top Flight AT-6 kit for a future project while they are still available. I did a search here at RCU and did not come up with too much on this particular kit, so I am wondering if any of you can share your experiences with this plane. I have not built a T/F gold edition kit yet and I am wondering how the quality of wood, plans, and manual stack up. What about powerplant recommendations and flight characteristics - any comments/warnings (I hear T/F kits build heavy)? I am thinking about installing an OS FS-91 II Surpass and Century Jet retracts. I am also considering this plane as a first "glass job" for me. Thanks in advance for your feedback.

Steve
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Old 06-23-2004, 11:31 AM
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Doug D.
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

I built one in the mid 90's. Not to difficult to build, just a bit time consuming. If you don't like a piece of wood just replace it. That's what I do. Other than that the wood is decent overall. Plans and manual are decent.
I flew mine with a Super Tiger .75 and the in cowl exhuast. And a friend of mine used a Irvine .61 in his, "Both More than adequate power". Had to add a glow driver though. The engine would die if I let it idle a bit to long. It's not nessasary if you can get the needles right. Depends on your engine. A 91 II supass would be a great choice.
As far as glassing is concerned "Keep It Light". Especially in the tail feathers. I ran eight servos (one on each alieron) a 1100mah battery pack and the glow driver, monokoted the model and only had to add about 6 oz. of nose wieght to balance. It came in at about 12lbs.
Flew well though.
[&:]
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Old 06-23-2004, 07:51 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

I think you'd be better off using a plastic covering instead of glass just to keep it light (unless you really NEED the scale appearance of a glassed finish). I have only heard from one fellow that thought this plane flew better with a (heavy) 1.20 4 stroke, all others indicated "keep it light" with a .91 4 stroke or .60 to .90 2-stroke. One fellow at our club has one with a 2-stroke .91, and it flies great, but is missing the sound of a 4-stroke.

I had problems researching this plane on RCU as well. If you do a search on PT-19, and sift through all the threads, you should find some posts on the AT-6. I checked with RCU to find out why there were no responses on a search of "AT-6", and they advised that they had not entered that phrase in the search option.

These are supposed to fly nicely with any of the lighter engines, but several people indicated to use the most forward recommended C of G to balance it, or it would tip stall.

There are several options for the retracts, check the posts for Century vs. Robart. I opted for the Robarts with Robo-Struts. For a short time, they made them mounted directly to the pivot blocks so you don't have to anchor the struts to the wire gear stub. I don't know if they still make them or not, but they are beautiful pieces. Spring-Air gets the best reviews if you want to look at them, too.

The only other TF kit that gets as good of reviews for ease of flight is the P-47.

Hope this helps,
Pilgrim
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Old 06-23-2004, 09:22 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

I built one 5 years ago.They fly real nice.I put a 91fx in mine,split flaps,retracts,monocote.Came in at 8.5 pounds.
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Old 06-23-2004, 09:40 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

Thanks for the feedback everyone. Spicoli - That is a beautiful plane! Based on what I am hearing I guess I will plan for the 91 four stroke and probably forget about glassing this one to save weight. Although I will most likely not start the build until the winter season, I just like to plan ahead.

Steve
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Old 06-24-2004, 04:17 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

For a realistic, bare metal aluminum finish, you can use Chrome MonoKote and then dull it with a bit of scrubbing with fine steel wool or a ScotchBrite pad. It then looks like slightly-weathered, unpainted aluminum. A very classic finish for the AT-6 Texan.

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Old 06-25-2004, 06:30 AM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

I built this kit just last year. I built per plan, no extra lightening holes. Added reinforcement around the retract mounts, covered with monokote with a OS 1.20 fs and 4oz of weight in the tail it came in at 9.7 lbs. Yes I read all the threads here and was sure it would be tail heavy so I put the big engine in only to have to add the tail weight.

I did have an issue with the elevator joiner/horn and nylon clevis, the nylon pin wore on the metal horn and failed on take-off luckily it failed on the ground. The plastic cowl has cracked several times and is now reinforced with glass on the inside.

Matt
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Old 06-25-2004, 08:32 AM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

Bax/Matt,

I have heard about dulling Chrome MonoKote prior to this - have never tried it. Thanks for the reminder, I may go that route with this one. I also thought about the cowl and found that Stans Fibertech offers a glass version for this airplane. I will probably pick up one of those also. It seems as though the 91 four stoke will be about the right power for scale flight and the right weight for balancing - I guess that is probably a good choice at this point.

Thanks,
Steve
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Old 06-25-2004, 09:11 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

Matt is right. I have an old kit in my stash. From when the kits first came out. I have thr Robart gear for it. The gear mounts tend to be a little weak. Need some reinforcing. Other than that I have nothing to add. I will use a ST 75 and the in-cowl muffler. Good luck with it.

Mark Shuman
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Old 07-01-2004, 12:12 PM
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Default RE: Anyone Have Experience with the Top Flight AT-6?

Well.... I went ahead and ordered the kit from tower ($20.00 off promotion) and a fiberglass cowl from Stan's. I will probably go with an OS FS-91 Surpass and Century Jet retracts when I get closer to build time. If I ever set aside enough money to buy a digital camera, I will do a build post here at RCU - but don't hold your breath, this will be a Fall/Winter/Spring project!

Steve
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