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Back to the hobby, got a few questions

Old 11-16-2019, 10:16 PM
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airwethead
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Default Back to the hobby, got a few questions

I was really into planes about 15 - 20 years ago. Suffice it to say none of my stuff is flight ready in today's world. I am looking to get back into the hobby, and I saw the Horizon Hobby Timber X. Looks really fun, and I would love to get one. My problem is, when I flew it was all nitro engines, just before 2.4ghz transmitters (yes I'm from the "lock out your channel on the board" era).

I'm kind of at a loss when it comes to batteries and chargers. I'm having a hard time deciding what battery and charger I need to fly this plane. I looked at batteries and I'm unfamiliar with the connectors, chargers, charger power supplies, all that.

Can anybody recommend a battery and charger that will be good with the Timber X? I see lots of batteries from 3S to 4S, different connectors, chargers that require special power supplies etc. Can anybody make it clear for an old nitro guy trying to get back into the game?
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Old 11-17-2019, 04:29 AM
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Why do you say none of your stuff is flight ready. The only thing you need it batteries. Don't let anyone tells you you can't fly your old aircraft with old planes and old FM radios as long as they are narrow-band radios. That's horses--t. And if the filed tells you you can't fly it there find another filed. For batteries go to Batteries America and buy replacements for the ones you have. People will tell you to use LiFe - again horses--t. Just more money to spend.
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Old 11-17-2019, 07:55 AM
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Originally Posted by airwethead View Post
I was really into planes about 15 - 20 years ago. Suffice it to say none of my stuff is flight ready in today's world. I am looking to get back into the hobby, and I saw the Horizon Hobby Timber X. Looks really fun, and I would love to get one. My problem is, when I flew it was all nitro engines, just before 2.4ghz transmitters (yes I'm from the "lock out your channel on the board" era).

I'm kind of at a loss when it comes to batteries and chargers. I'm having a hard time deciding what battery and charger I need to fly this plane. I looked at batteries and I'm unfamiliar with the connectors, chargers, charger power supplies, all that.

Can anybody recommend a battery and charger that will be good with the Timber X? I see lots of batteries from 3S to 4S, different connectors, chargers that require special power supplies etc. Can anybody make it clear for an old nitro guy trying to get back into the game?
You can still fly your older equipment, we have a few in out club that still fly on FM, just buy fresh batteries,, I use Life packs,, but NimH are still fine for small or medium size planes,, and likley still compatible with your old chargers

As far as a "new" Lithium based charger,, there are dozens out there to pick from, and now a days they all work pretty much the same as far as learning what the buttons do,,

The differences are power output,

Most entry level chargers start out around 50 watt which is fine for small packs, but the 2200-3500mah pack for that plane would take about 1-2 hours to charge,, if you're going to jump right in to that size plane/battery packs,, I'd look for something with more like 200-250 watts output minimum

The learning curve looks steep from the bottom of the hill,, but don't worry, you'll learn fast,, figuring out pack sizes, charging times, flight times,,, it's just math

Good luck

Last edited by scale only 4 me; 11-17-2019 at 07:58 AM.
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Old 11-17-2019, 11:06 AM
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Default Old airplanes

I love the old airplanes. Just about all my airplanes are from the 90s and older. I just built a Midwest Pitts special from 1972. Built like a tank. I mostly fly a Midwest extra 300 built in 1998, and a Goldberg ultimate bipe I built in 1997 it has floats and flys great. I just upgraded them to 2.4 gigs and keep good batteries servos etc in them. Guys in my club that fly my old extra say it is a great flyer and wish they had one. Nothing wrong with old airplanes.👍
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Old 11-17-2019, 03:02 PM
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Don't discount the old battery packs either! Charge them and check them - you may be surprised that they're still good too! I've been in the hobby since the late seventies, flying mostly 72 MHz and I'm still using NiCad batteries since the last century. I've been able to "awaken" wayward NiCad's (both Rx and Tx) by hitting them with 12 volts for short time from my flight box battery and reviving any dead cells, then put on an overnight charge with the wall-wart. If you have a means for cycling, do that to ensure that they are still holding charge at least three times. Don't throw them away or replace them without testing first!

Take it from me - since you're a dyed-in-the-wool glow guy, I doubt you'll take well to electrics - based on my experience, they just don't do the traditional hobbyist much justice; stick to glow - you'll be much happier!

Last edited by H5606; 11-17-2019 at 03:31 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 11-17-2019, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by H5606 View Post
,,,,,,,,,,

Take it from me - since you're a dyed-in-the-wool glow guy, I doubt you'll take well to electrics - based on my experience, they just don't do the traditional hobbyist much justice; stick to glow - you'll be much happier!
LOL, that's silly,, I fly Gas, Glow and EP,, all are fun in their own ways,, why limit yourself?
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Old 11-18-2019, 02:26 PM
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I appreciate all the replies. I am not abandoning all my old glow and gas stuff, but I am trying to ease back into the hobby with what I hope is a quick easy electric I can take over to the (really big field) park by my house and throw in the air. Starting to rehab my old glow engines and they all seem to run after years of sitting in the garage. One old YS45 two stroke will need a new diaphragm, if I can't find one that may go to the collector shelf, but sooner or later all my old planes will all fly again. One of my main problems is the nice big field with pits, paved runway, frequency board and all the amenities that I used to use is now soccer fields. I don't know of any dedicated fields near me any more.

My old 72 FM Futaba radio does not hold a charge, and rather than mess with it I want to get a new radio. I like the look of the BNF Spektrum radios, and getting away from FM and possible shoot downs from other radios seems like a no brainer, so I'm already set on a new radio. I don't mind spending a little money to get back into things, I just want to make sure I spend it wisely.

So back to the question at hand, if you were starting over, and didn't mind spending a little money, which radio, battery(s) charger would you get to go with the Timber X. I'm also open to other suggestions for competing or better airframes. The Timber X looks like a blast but there may be others out there.
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Old 11-18-2019, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by P51Junkey View Post
I love the old airplanes. Just about all my airplanes are from the 90s and older. I just built a Midwest Pitts special from 1972. Built like a tank. I mostly fly a Midwest extra 300 built in 1998, and a Goldberg ultimate bipe I built in 1997 it has floats and flys great. I just upgraded them to 2.4 gigs and keep good batteries servos etc in them. Guys in my club that fly my old extra say it is a great flyer and wish they had one. Nothing wrong with old airplanes.👍
I have a Goldberg Extra 300 with and ancient OS120 surpass sitting on the shelf waiting to fly again. It's been 15 years since it last flew, and it kills me every time I look at it. I have a Tiger 2 which was the first plane I built from a kit, also waiting. I might commit the ultimate atrocity and convert the Tiger 2 to electric, if I ever get electrics all figured out.

I do love my old planes, but I am really looking for something to get me back into the hobby quickly and easily. Come summer I will start back with all the good old wood and nitro planes.
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Old 11-19-2019, 11:52 AM
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I wanted to jump in with a quick question and maybe an answer.

Do you have a Club or group near you flying RC? Visit with them and they may provide some answers to your questions.

Because, they will be available to help program that new transmitter, have recommendations for electric, and maybe even help you get back in the air.

If you buy something based off internet advice, it may be good, but you may have to go back to the internet to get help.

For Me, I fly JR radios. Including a 2.4 and the 'old' 72 frequency. It works for me and I know how to program both. Others have had great luck with Spektrum. Several around here fly FrSky Taranis radios and like the flexability (but more programming).

For charging electric, I have a Kinexsis AC/DC charger that does LiPo, LiFe, and other chemistry, it works for my electric planes and the rx battery (LiFe) in my nitro planes.

So, I can tell you what I have found I like, but my recommendation is: if you have help nearby, ask them what they use so you can have help nearby.

Last edited by TEBerg; 11-19-2019 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:24 AM
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The specs for the Timber X say a 2200-3200 3 or 4 cell lipo. I'd keep it light with a 2200 3 cell and experiment with props to see what flies it best.
For chargers, the Imax B6 is a classic that still works as well as it ever did. It can also charge your glow starter and pretty much any other battery you decide to use.
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