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Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

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Old 11-27-2012, 06:20 AM
  #1
COL J
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Default Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

I am looking at these two and would like any comments as to which most prefer.
Thanks
John
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:07 AM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

Poke around a bit, I know there's another identical thread with the same question.

Having seen the Top Flight I can say its very nice quality and I wouldn't have a second thought about shelling out for it if I had the money. (well more acurately, permission to spend the money )
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Old 11-27-2012, 07:46 AM
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larry@coyotenet
 
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

I have built four of the TF kit Corsair and a friend has the ESM corsair. Here is how they stack up. ESM comes with a nice paint scheme and the TF arf is basic blue with decals.
TF weighs at least 5-6 pounds less. Mine balanced without weight in the nose using a Brison 4.2. My friends ESM with same motor needed 3lbs of lead in nose to balance!
Both fly well but of course the lighter plane lands much slower. ESM retracts are junk!!!!! if you go that way order the Robart or Sierra gear for the ESM.
The big disadvantage with the ESM is the weight, I have never seen an ESM anything come in close to the advertised weight. Always 3 or more pounds heavier.
Larry
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:09 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

What version of ESM retracts are you using? Are the new V3 electrics any better?
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Old 11-27-2012, 02:33 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

Regarding the ESMretracts, I would have to agree with Larry, I can't speak to the electrics, ei V1 vs V2 or V3, but I can speak to the struts and the retract mechanism. They are weak, bend easily and develop a lot of slop very early on. Go with the Seirra or Robarts, you will recover the extra costs with less frustration and enjoyment and maybe with less repairs. Also I have 3 ESM planes, 2 are flying and one on the bench, all are heavy so keep your field in mind. I fly in the desert and off of pavement, so nice and smooth and the extra weight doesn't beat the gear up. All the ESMplanes I have and have flown are nice fliers, I don't have any Topflight machines, however the reputation is excellent. In the end go with the one you like the look or colour of :-) and do your best to stay away from the ESMgear.

Cheers
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:47 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

there are long threads on each of these on this forum, so take a look at those.
there are some complaints of the top flite having problems with the elevator linkages.

tony
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:09 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

YUUUUP..........I'm the friend Larry is referring to. We fly together all the time. As Larry said, I have the ESM 85" 50CC Corsair. If I had it to do again....I would most probably go with the Top Flite ARF just because of the ease of the build, the reliability and quality of the Top Flite product. I do enjoy ESM Corsair but am done with the ESM stock gear........I had a set of the Robart 148's rotating gear that I sent off to Robart and had them electrify and now have them back. Last but not least......The airframe is all I used from the box........The rest was unusable as far as I was concerned........And yes, Larry was spot on the weight..........She came in at 31lbs. That includes 3lbs. of lead in the cowl.

All that being said........The ESM is hands down a better looking and more scale like Corsair. That's not to say you couldn't do the same thing with the Top Flite. As a sport flying Warbird and not trying to go to Top Gun, I'd probably go with the Top Flite ARF. If you go with the ESM, you need to be a very experienced BARF BUILDER.........


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Old 11-27-2012, 05:33 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

The TF Corsair has it fair share of problems out of the box just to be perfectly honest. The tail control system is weak and has been known to have flutter in flight at medium speeds with the suggested 55cc engines. They come with 60 size ARF hardware basically. There is a considerable amount of free play when the servos are on and you lightly touch the rudder or elevators. Ive posted video of this and documented the kits faults and correspondence with GP. The thread is on here if you want to read it.

Next the wood sheeting on the TF Corsair is very flimsy and every time I handle the plane I fear Im going to poke through it, especially the fuse. The wings are pretty good, nothing to add, but again I stress the hardwood blocks.

Last but not least all the hardwood is anything but so you must either replace the loose blocks or soak them in CA before final assembly.

Ive had 3 ESM planes and my buddy has had 2 but Ive worked on all of them, ME 109E/Spitfire x2/FW 190 x2 a Hurricane.
The basic difference between the TF Corsair and ESM is the fuselage is fiberglass which is why its more tail heavy. Generally speaking the ESM planes have average to poor wood, plywood specifically, and this needs attention prior to the build out. Otherwise these planes are pretty good looking sport scale war birds and nothing more.
The main issue I have had with ESM in all of these planes is the misalignment of the wing saddle and horizontal stab, asymmetrical fuselage, and brittle canopy plastic and blister detail parts.
The little extra weight in the ESM planes will not hurt you if you learn to handle it especially on landings. These planes dont really float as much as lighter war birds which can lead to problems if not handled correctly.

So niether of these companies offer a great product that is hands off built out of the box as good as you expect for your money and TIME. You will have to put in some time further improving or developing the ARF's as you see fit.

For my money I should have gone with the ESM FW190-D9 instead of the more expensive TF Corsair.

I hope this helps you decide as it took me going through all of this to figure it out.

Best regards,

Chris
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Old 11-27-2012, 05:41 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

Chris, I think you hit the nail on the head. Quality for the $ is laking on both acounts. I don't think any one expects perfection but expecting a useable product for what one pays shouldn't be an outlandish request.

There's always time for these people to improve their products ya know!
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:02 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

Thanks Bob. It sucks to have to do the extra work on a product of any price or type. You dont expect to take home your new washing machine and improve it or your new TV.
I believe that the industry has been derailed by a build it to the lowest cost business model and let the customer do the rest mentality. Its because we are a group of tinkerers and thinkers that cant leave anything alone so they prey upon this fact and produce marginal products.
The truth is, because I worked in this industry for many years and visited Chinese factories, the truth is it takes no more effort or significant time to produce a better product. You just have to have better production design skills for manufacturing to acheive product design goals.
So thats a top tip if you want to be competitive in this market, build a plane I as a customer will not have to work on for the same price as the competition and you will succeed.
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Old 11-27-2012, 08:40 PM
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Default RE: Giant Corsair ARF - TOPFLITE OR ESM

I have the Top-Flite Corsair ARF and am flying it stock out of the box. I have no problems at all with the above mentioned problems. You can not go wrong with the Top-Flite. Excellent flying ARF.
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