Well here's my little bit of input, actually a rambling more for entertainment value than information. I am a 43 year old father of three including a frosh. college student. I am a commercial pilot, cfi,cfii, me, with over 2300 hours logged in full scale aircraft though none in the last 8 years. I flew a lot of control line as a lad and dabbled in RC several years ago right after college, though I gave all my stuff to nephews and neighbor kids as I was faced with several moves, children, career, etc.
Aways, vigilant about aviation, I noticed a model of what appeared to be a super cub in a city park in a down town soccer field. I was killing time, so I pulled over, got out of the car and watched. I found the kid with the transmitter and walked over to him. After he brought it in for a perfect wheel landing on a cement basketball court, I struck up conversation. I was surpised to learn that the cub was made from foam, and ELECTRIC! You guessed it, it was the HZ super cub and the young kid did a fantastic job of selling it.
Before long I had my own and was amazed at how easy it was to fly, right out of the box. Man, I was amazed at how far the hobby had come with electric convenience, and new foam tech. I was having the time of my life with this thing, the hobby was now much easier and more affordable than when I laid down a transmitter several years ago.
I was blabbing about it to my entire large family, cousins, brother in laws, nephews, my own kid, neighbors, etc, and soon there was bevy of HZ super cubs boring holes in the skies of our neighborhood every night the wind was less than 15 kts. Soon a nephew showed up with a Typhoon and dazzled us all with an amazing airshow. He put on a fantastic aerobatic display and he'd only been flying the cub for a little over a month (dang kids...
Well this led to a few more typhoons, a couple of helo's and a PZ P-51, but no strykers....yet.
Mine arrived about a month ago. Of course I opted for the "C" for maxim impressive value to the now RC battle hardened neihborhood and family.
I was a little nervous for the maiden...I had only been flying the cub for about 8 months or so, and I don't mind saying...I can make that little doggy sit up and beg....he he he...the Stryker on the other hand, may be a challenge... I was prepared as I had read about the disorienting aspects of the flying wing, aileron controls, sensitive trims, etc...but I was sure I could handle it because well....I was so ***** hot with the cub, and I am a full scale pilot who is used to various attitudes, recoverys, procedures...right?....yeah not so fast there buckwheat.
After a thourough range check, I launched her into a brisk 5-7 kt breeze, noseup, trimmed up slightly...I tossed, hit the power...and she glided to a peaceful belly landing on the gravel which scuffed the paint off the underside of the nose. My kid asked "Dad, what the heck did you do that for?" Of course the tx power must be "ON" for a successful transmission of data, and I proceeded to move the switch to the on position for the "real" flight.
Again, the toss, hit the power (full, of course) and ZOOOOOOM away she went. I had rehearsed this moment severl times in my head to prepare for this moment. Left turn, nose up to counter the loss of lift in the turn, power to half...no wait power to 1/3...yeah baby...I had her circling around us, and tracking beautifully. I had goosebumps as it was flying so well, and all the horror stories I had heard were put to rest...or maybe not. I continued the left hand circuit for a minute or so, and switched to a right hand circle, then to figure eights. "Man Dad, that thing is COOL!" exlaimed my kid as I continued to feel her out overhead. Since I was doing so well and the thing was flying so effortlessly, I thought I'd show him just how cool this baby really was. I fed in a little throttle, brought her out of a left hand circuit right at us, and let a little altitude bleed from the turn. She zipped over our heads at about 30 feet or so and I pitched the nose up slightly and rolled her left, then right...beautiful! She was picking up speed quickly after leveling from the second roll, so I again reduced power and started to bring her around to the left. Man, I guess the nose really does drop in the turn, have to pick up a bit more, hmm...doesn't seem to want to come around in that wind, needs a little more aileron...left, no wait, it should be laying over to the LEFT! a little more to the left, OH NO she's really diving AM I LOOKING AT THE TOP OR BOTTOM OF THIS THING? A little more up with right aileron WHAT THE?... POOF, a puff of dust visible in the weeds, a fin flies up and flutters to the ground, and silence. "DAD, what did you do?" yells my kid in disbelief. To tell you the truth I was quite stunned myself, stunned and ashamed. I had made the critical inexperienced pilot error. I got cocky in my abilites, pushed it and BANG. The nose was laying about 5 ft. from the wreckage and strangely did not seperate where the factory tape is but about an inch and a half behind the leading edge of the wing. The battery was thrown clear and I found it about 10 feet away. There were a few little chunks of foam here and there, and the battery hatch was missing a piece about the size of a nickel.
I picked it all up and carried it to the house, where a major surgery took place with Gorilla glue, tape and toothpicks. In the morning she was once again structurally sound, but not as pretty as before the previous evening's debacle. I am going to order a new fuse, but I think I'll wait until I am a little more confident in my ability, both flying and glueing.
LESSON LEARNED. You have to fly this thing ALL THE TIME. It is a sweet planform and will do exactly what you tell it...including flying right into the ground if that is what your input is. I have since made 5 flights, and have become disoriented one other time which only brushed a wing-tip resulting in a slow speed cart-wheel, and busting the factory nose, more glue, no problem.
If I were asked for advice from newbies on flying the Stryker, I would say TAKE YOUR TIME. Keep repeating to yourself which way you are turing and KEEP YOURSELF ORIENTED, perform your violent manuervers AT ALTITUDE. I also no longer fly at sunset, because of the confusion resulting from the poor light.
I am not really interested in the hot rod upgrades yet, as I am still learning to fly, though I really enjoy reading you guys's write ups, I usually just skip the real technical stuff and engage the actual flying posts. My next one will be the bullet proof version I read about here, and will be painted with bright orange accents on top and probably black on bottom for easy visual reference.
Well that's my story.
Thanks for the great forum and keep up the great work!