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Skymaster F-4

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Old 12-19-2015, 09:25 AM
  #1
tp777fo
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Default Skymaster F-4

OK guys need some help. Im thinking about going big and getting a SM F-4. Being an old Rhino driver (hardwing D model) the plane gives me the shivers every time I see one. The jet is kinda old and hopefully SM has all the bugs worked out but I just read in Contrails about one coming apart in flight. Looking at a Jet Central Rhino (45#) for blow. Give me the lowdown both good and bad. Too much $$ to get one if I am going to have problems. I have a BV 3/4 built but it is smaller than I want. Also I fly off grass if that is a factor....1000'. Thanks in advance and Merry Christmas to all my jet buds around the world.
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Old 12-19-2015, 09:53 AM
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kevinthoele
 
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Tom

They fly great. Love the plane. Very predictable to land and very solid in the air. Outside gear door a little fiddley. I think some have put small air cylinder to solve that

I would not hesitate to go with one
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Old 12-19-2015, 10:11 AM
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The SM F-4 is very reliable and flies great. I've had two. The first has over 100 flights. The second has one irritating issue and that's the nose door cylinder. It needs to be moved for better leverage. Better to address this before your first flight, otherwise you'll be landing with the nose gear up. If you move the CG to the rear most range you'll have no problems with it.
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Old 12-19-2015, 04:11 PM
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David Jackson
 
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One of the best flying models I've ever owned. Actually thinking about getting another one.
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Old 12-19-2015, 10:37 PM
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Great flying jet amigo!! Don't hesitate
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Old 12-20-2015, 06:49 AM
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Default Btw

Best jet I've ever flown! A real man's plane!!LOL Sent you a PM regarding the one that failed in contrails.

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Old 12-20-2015, 06:50 AM
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Can you copy and PM that to me also so we don't make the same mistake?
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Old 12-20-2015, 07:55 AM
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A couple more As you can see ( and a couple of guys mentioned) the small gear doors which are spring loaded will not stay closed in flight. Pat, sent you the PM too. I have a Behotec 190 in it. Also, Tam's bifurcated pipe.

Mike
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Old 12-20-2015, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrnflyr View Post
Can you copy and PM that to me also so we don't make the same mistake?
+1
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Old 12-20-2015, 02:12 PM
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Why not just post it here so we can all understand what issues this model has?
I have a new one I'm starting to build as well. I'd like to hear all about its tricks and tips.
I have new AMT Olympus Kero start turbine I plan to use.
Thanks
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:07 PM
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I had an Olympus in mine. Fly it like a fighter and you will be fine.
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Old 12-21-2015, 12:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrnflyr View Post
Can you copy and PM that to me also so we don't make the same mistake?
+2

or please PM me.


Hello Tom, I've had both the SM and JL airplanes. There are significant differences in the airplanes. My preference and recommendation is the JL. It has substantially stronger gear and will rotate and fly at a much lower speed than the SM.
The SM gear can tear out of the wing relatively easily. This due solely to its design. JL addressed it and solved the issue.
My intention is not to bash SM but simply to state my observations from both airplanes.
The SM is a stronger/thicker and heavier layup in the fuselage and I think that's a plus when handling the airplane. The JL is similar to a Yellow Aircraft F-15 in its fuselage firmness.

One clear difference is top speed, the SM utilizes a much thinner airfoil than JL and is much faster.

Heres a video I made long ago that highlights some of the differences
https://youtu.be/29hWWTV6Hmw

Also if you search my build thread you will see the F-4 I built from JL. Tons of pics.

I fly fly from a 400' paved runway and the JL wing is a big plus in tight spaces.
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Old 12-21-2015, 04:34 AM
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I emailed JL a couple of months ago asking about their F-4 and all they could do is try to sell me a Yak-30. Didnt sound like they wanted to lay one up. Nice vid on the differences.
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Old 12-21-2015, 05:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tp777fo View Post
I emailed JL a couple of months ago asking about their F-4 and all they could do is try to sell me a Yak-30. Didnt sound like they wanted to lay one up. Nice vid on the differences.
Neither for an F-35. "you don't want, Yak make you much happy. F-35 maybe 1 to 2 years"
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Old 12-21-2015, 05:37 AM
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I was nuts for even speaking with JL...I have seen too many friends have JL airplanes blow up in flight then turn into a fight with them when you get the famous "so solly, you no build right". Maybe BVMh has taught them something about quality but they are still sorely lacking in customer service.
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Old 12-21-2015, 08:15 AM
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Hey Tom,

I had my SM Rhino for 8 seasons and it became my favorite jet. With a couple of well placed carbon cloth additions, this was one of the toughest jets I've ever owned. It survived my beatings! I had a JC Rhino which was a great combo but does fall short on vertical performance. My Rhino was one of the older versions so I'm sure that the newer versions will give you the uphill thrust. Let me know if you'd like additional info on the weak areas that need carbon reinforcement.

Pull the trigger on the F-4, you'll never regret it!
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Old 12-21-2015, 09:07 AM
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Hi

I just maiden mine a couple of weeks ago and it really is a nice flying jet. Can't tell much about reliability with 4 flights, but my impressions are:

1 - very well built landing gear
2 - Nice lay-up, maybe on the heavy side. Glue joints could be better, but can be treated and with an inside paint job is ok
3 - original pipe is low grade, but it works as long as keep looking inside to check for discoulor or bubbles. I maybe buy another one...
4 - The doors are tricky to fit, but if you find the proper spring, they work fine. Also doors have to be carefully adjusted and trimmed
5 - Paint job is very nice. With aditional mild weathering and will be perfect

Somethings that I have to work out

1 - the plane as a strong tendency to climb with full throtle. With CG at 325mm (never use the recommended 190mm) and original pipe, it shows a strong tendency to clim. I am planning to turn the pipe upside down to have more down thrust and see if it works without changing the downtrust of the turbine
2 - I had a hotstart with a P180RX and the stab was burn. I am waiting for a new one and soon will put some flightmetal in the tail

What is your experience with this issue? I guess If I do not heat protect the tail, it is justa a question of time, before it happens again........

I also have the JL Yak130 and it as huge metal plates in the fuse above the exhaust. In that case "I more am happy with Yak" ;-)

What are you guys using for heat protection in the Rhino's tail?

Br

Nuno
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Old 12-21-2015, 10:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetnuno View Post


1 - the plane as a strong tendency to climb with full throtle. With CG at 325mm (never use the recommended 190mm) and original pipe, it shows a strong tendency to clim. I am planning to turn the pipe upside down to have more down thrust and see if it works without changing the downtrust of the turbine


What is your experience with this issue? I guess If I do not heat protect the tail, it is justa a question of time, before it happens again........


What are you guys using for heat protection in the Rhino's tail?
This.

I moved up my turbine 1/2" and it helped. But it still does it. A demon Cortex seemed to stop the tendency almost completely.

Jetnuno, I bought high temp silver paint from my auto store and painted it. Flight metal would be great! I think after moving my turbine up, it has also helped some?

I have a kingtech K-180. But I will putting a P-200 in it for the next flights.

About the CG, keep it back, back, back, BACK!!!

I'm on my second one.

I lost my first one (jolly rogers, I was one of the first ones with a SM f-4) because the elevators would blank out, on full flaps. I was the first one to mention this and then it started to happen to everyone all over the world.

I was able to fully reproduce this: Full flaps, point the phantom down, and I was not able to pull back up until the flaps went back up.

Finally, people started moving the CG back and THAT solved the blanking elevators. It was too late for me by then though. I dumb thumbed an approach, and the nose dropped. I was not fast enough to hit the flap switch.

Believe it or not, those tiny little ailerons have a lot of authority. You will NOT run out of aileron.

The nose gear is NOTORIOUS for not coming down on SM F-4's. I have a little carbon fiber scraper that I put on the nose of my second one (rising sun). You can see it in the pics.

If you go to drop the gear in flight, jiggle the rudder, and it has popped out for me. Mine (thankfully) has not done that for a while.

The main gear in my first one were REALLY weak. Like perfect landing, then hit the brakes and the main gear would pull out, weak.

That is not the case anymore. The gear are very robust.

That little "retarded" door (I like to call it that! LOL) just needs a heavy enough spring. It was trial and error until I got heavy enough springs at my local hardware store to keep my doors closed.

Right now, my F-4 is the biggest maintenance hog I own. But it is full of scale goodies. See pics!

Those are all the bad things about it.

Now to all the good:

There ain't nothing like a phabulous phantom in the sky, or just sitting there.

I would say that SM's F-4 is built like a little tank.

It really does fly well.

Ground handling of a phantom is not matched by ANY jet. Not even a bandit is as good.

It sticks when you land.

It's been around for a while and there are a lot of knowledgeable people around.

It's got LOTS of fuel for long flights.

I've never seen one snap on landing.

Do it!!!










Last edited by ravill; 12-21-2015 at 10:36 AM. Reason: I didn't address Nuno's question
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Old 12-21-2015, 12:36 PM
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Hi Ravill

Very nice!!!! Like that paint scheme. You got all the goodies....

It is also my 2 F4. I los my first in 2011, because it was tooooooo nose heavy and elevators blanked as well. I was more conservative than SM and had my CG at 180mm. Imagine that....

That is what this forum is for - to share good and not that good experiences. I wll raise my P180RX and increase the downtrust a bit to see how it goes.

I will start soon with the flitemetal but would like to know if you are happy with the high temp silver paint. Your pics were shot before that.. Should be simpler to paint than to flitemetal the thing......

I was planning to buy a TAMs pipe but the euro-dollar rate sucks.... not a good time for europeans to buy arfs. We are now looking for the european kits like TD, ADjets and others


Regards
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Old 12-21-2015, 12:37 PM
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If you go with the Tam's pipe, there's no tendancy to climb with throttle. Mine's completely neutral throughout the throttle range. The tam's pipe is straight out, the Skymaster one has a bend in it, maybe that's why there's a diff.

Takes a little work to fit the Tam's, it won't go in with the engine mounts in place and you need to open up the back end a lot more for it.

I agree with the guys on the CG. I'm back at 325mm and it flys really nice. I originally flew it at 300mm, then Ali flew it and said to pull the 1.5lbs of lead out of the nose! He loved it after that and I've been flying it like that since. I never would have had the nerve to do that on my own!

Mike
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Old 12-21-2015, 12:42 PM
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I have not noticed any "new' bubbles after paint and turbine adjustment. Let me see if I remember to take a pic tonight.

I was told there is a gentlemen who was flying his F-4 at 400mm! And he was doing knife edges from one end to the other end of the field (1+ mile long) runway at best in the west.
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Old 12-21-2015, 03:28 PM
  #22
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Never heard of one breaking up in flight. I've got over 200 flights on mine and she's rock solid. These are great jets. I currently fly mine with an old Kingtech 170. Plenty of power. I'm getting ready to put a B-180 Gold in it. The gear is robust. I've worn out several sets of wheels over the years.

As far a flight goes she's stable and true, keep her flying at half throttle or more, once you make the runway just flare and land. Balance is critical. Don't get her too nose heavy or she might not flare on a windy day. Ask me how I know lol.

All in all a great jet.

Andy
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Old 12-21-2015, 03:56 PM
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And while we are all here....I wish SM would build a bigger one! I love them almost as much as an 86 or 104 and the type certainly deserves a shot in the 1/5 scale.
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Old 12-21-2015, 04:01 PM
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Wow, Andy, your F-4 looks fantastic with all ordinance! I really enjoyed my jolly rogers scheme.

How did you like flying yours with full ordinance?

I found that my ailerons lost some authority as well as feeling the "drag". I think I may need to add some "toe in" to my drop tanks.
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Old 12-22-2015, 01:06 PM
  #25
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Imagine a big ugly with roll spoilers n speed brakes, maybe even an operable hook and soft wing!

I'm m sure all of you have seen this but if you haven't and love the Phantoms then here's a great video
http://youtu.be/eFhHqmrG8U8
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