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Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

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Old 06-11-2008, 08:05 AM
  #76
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

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Old 06-13-2008, 08:43 PM
  #77
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

UPDATE:
Mustang is now completed EXCEPT for a few 'accessories' needing installation: pilot, canopy, wing fairing, and radiator scoop all need to be installed. Otherwise, all servos are installed, connected, and setup. All control surfaces are installed and connected. Castle Creations ESC is setup, and motor has been tested.

I have to work on Sat (8 hours only), but will have time after work to make it flight ready and get a test flight in. Weather looks fantastic, so............

Also: I ordered a fiberglass cowl from FiberGlass Specialties on Thurs. morning. The cowl is for a Sig .60 size Mustang, presumedly for the now discontinued kit (NOT the ARF).
http://www.fiberglassspecialtiesinc.com/
My intentions are to adapt it to my Top Flite Mustang, to give it a more scale accurate profile and better looks. It's a $42.75 gamble, I'll keep you posted on how well it goes. I intend to install the oil filter vents that are marketed by Tony Howard on that cowl.
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Old 06-15-2008, 12:39 PM
  #78
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

FIRST FLIGHT!

I didn't get the chance to fly it on Sat., had trouble getting the CG right and by the time I did, it was getting dark.
Today started out with a forcast of afternoon storms, but they came early and I decided to cancel my plans to take it to a Father's Day fun fly event, where I'm sure I could have found someone to take a video.

Then, the skies cleared, but the winds remained gusty. I decided to go for it anyway. Took it to my local flying site (acrogs the street) with my wife to take pictures. She does OK with the stills, but not with the video, so this is all we get for now.

OK, the plane. I weighed it last night and the all up weight (with 'fuel'/ batteries) is 160.6 oz, or just over 10 lbs. To you fuel guys, that may seem heavy, but like I said: that is with a 'full tank of fuel' (batteries). I will be adding more weight tho, as I plan to install the gear doors when (if?) the Robart door mounting kits arrive..

While the YouTube video shows an electric powered one that flies on "1200 watts", mine is using about 1/2 that much power. Full throttle on mine is about 600 watts. Obvoiusly, mine does not go near vertical immediately after takeoff, as the other did, but I DO like the power that mine has. Takeoffs are quick enough, and top speed was well, THIS THING IS FAST!

I had to dial in some downtrim, as it wanted climb at any and all power settings, and took off just a little sooner than I anticipated. Maybe that's what happened to the other guy too.

I sure like the way it looks with all 3 wheels up, whadaya think?

It is NOT completed yet, there are still many things that I want to do with it, but it is flight ready now.

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Old 06-15-2008, 05:33 PM
  #79
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

I maidened mine today and she did great except for the first flight, she took off nicely but she was extreemly sensitive to elevator input which indicates that the CG is off just a bit i landed and moved the cg to 5 " instead of the recomended 5 5/8" and that fix it, im using a saito 125 for power with a keleo creations inverted muffler, a 14/8 master airscrew 2 blade prop which at full throttle will put out 9600 rpm which gave me unlimited vertical and plenty of speed to chase down those zero`s and FW 190`s that fly at my flying site ,also a robart air system and struts,and an onboard glow for easy starting and a air screamer whistle from ic4produts which gave it somewhat of a merlin engine sound this bird does not need flaps to land but i use them anyways cause of the cool factor hehe




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Old 06-15-2008, 07:43 PM
  #80
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

I maidened Mine on fathers day today. I was not lucky on that one and managed to land my plane without too much damage. On take off it climbed off early and was terribly tail heavy.

TF most definitely set this cg too far back. It should be around 5 inch. the plane was impossible to control since it whanted to climb at any speed.

I beleive that based on the experience of the latest guys who flew that plane that TF should be advise to make a correction to this CG.

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Old 06-15-2008, 07:59 PM
  #81
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Mine does OK with the CG at 5 1/2". Just because an aircraft wants to climb (at any speed) does not mean it is tail heavy. It appears to me the that stab could use a little positive incidence. Once I got the trim right (down elevator) it handled much better, and I was able to make some decent landings.
ALSO: do not go overboard on the elevator throws. Mine are less than 1/2" up and down. Top Flite recommends 3/8" up and down on the low rates, and 'high rates are to keep it from nosing over on grass runways'.
BTW: flew mine again about 1/2 hour ago.
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Old 06-15-2008, 11:21 PM
  #82
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

I maiden mine yesterday and have to agree with the tail heavy cg, mine was droping the tail before stalling, instead of dropping its nose; the landing was a little on the hard side and I manage to brake one of the retracts, and rip off the other, not much damage to the wing(ufff) I'm doing some reinforcement since the oportunity. filling any gap with gorila glue, and the sanding or cutting any excess.

I'm powering mine with a Saito 100 and an APC 14x8 (9,250 rpm peak), I'm going to try an APC 15x6 and see.
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Old 06-17-2008, 02:27 PM
  #83
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Mine came today from Tower. I was surprised to see how nice it was. It is also bigger than I thought it would be.
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Old 06-17-2008, 10:57 PM
  #84
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

heres some pics of my bird i forgot to put them in last time. the fourth pic is the airscreamer whistle that i put on it, and the last is the nose art that i madefrom my printer







good luck and happy flying
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Old 06-19-2008, 01:06 AM
  #85
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

I received my muffler back from Clearance Lee, and it now has a downward exhaust, with the engine inverted. I found a way to mount the fuel tank lower, by removing some wood, with my dremal tool, and a sanding drum. I now have my retracts installed and doing some fun stuff-putting on the invasion strips. Then I'll glue the wing together, and final the air system...my air tank will be on the wing. I'm really happy with the kit so far and if if fly's like the Real Flight sim...it's going to be a sweet heart in the air.

I've a couple pictures of my engine...

Soft Landings Always.
Bobby of Maui
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Old 06-19-2008, 08:24 PM
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

3 more successful flights this evening. Winds were calm, so I had a good chance to perform some slow speed tests, both clean and dirty. Of course I grabbed some significant altitude first, just in case, but I was really amazed at how well it flies at slow speeds. Never did stall it, but got it to just slowly descend.

Before the flights, I did some mixing on my Tx: I made the throttle master to the elevator, so now the elevator goes up about 1/16" when at idle, and resumes to normal position at full throttle. The mix is linear, so it does so gradually (assuming throttle changes are done gradually). The result was about what I expected: very predictable, yet slow landing approaches. I made 3 fairly good landings. I say fairly good because it did have a tendency to bounce a little, but not enough to cause any noseovers or damage.
All 3 landings were done with full flaps, and motor at idle.

SO, to sum up my setting:
elevators are now fixed (not using dual rates) at 3/8" up and down, with expo set at -36%
Elevator trim is set about 1/16" below level, BUT mixing moves it up to level when throttle is cut.
CG remains at 5 1/2" aft of fuselage at wing.

This is working REALLY well for me, I'm thinking maybe some of you have too much elevator throw, AND moving the CG too far forward make the nose want to drop too rapidly as it slows down. That's what it appears to me happened in the (electric powered) video: it just sorta dropped onto the runway.

I just joined the Battle Creek Balsa Bees R/C club, and will be attending a social event at their field this Sunday. I am sure that I will be able to get some videos then.
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Old 06-20-2008, 09:37 AM
  #87
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Thanks so much for the pics. Hey, what is an air screamer.... where did you get it and how does it install? Does it make that diving Mustang scream sound or can you describe it? That would be pretty cool if it did! Any way, I have been vacationing and my build is going way slow. Am working on setting the retracts up but am getting some binding in the link wires that keeps the gear from going down to full lock. There is a plastic connector screwed to the actuator rod that the wire attaches to with a Z bend. My gear came with that tab pointing down toward the opening in the wheel well. This causes a bind in the wire when the servo tries to pull the gear down. It looks like if I rotate the tab 180deg. on the threaded actuator then the wire will stay in a straight line with the guide tube during servo travel. If you guys have any other little mods you made to make the mech. gear work please let me know. I have set up a few of the H9 retracts with no problems but these ones are making me work a little harded[:@] The 3-1/2" Robart diamond tread wheels look really nice on the gear legs and I was able to make them fall into the wells by moving the axles up slightly on the gear legs.

This has been a nice build thread and I'm glad to here some of you are already getting in some sorties with this beautiful Mustang!
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Old 06-20-2008, 04:18 PM
  #88
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

All these maiden reports and I'm still saving up my pennies to buy mine[] Can't wait!
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Old 06-20-2008, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

My fiberglass cowl arrived today. As you can see: it has a MUCH more scale profile than the Top Flite version. Note the gently curved bottom side, as opposed to the nearly straight Top Flite one. Also notice the more scale looking scoop, as opposed to the oversized Top Flite version.

Now the bad news: it appears that the old '.60 size' Sig Mustang kit was designed to use a 3 1/2" spinner. Guess my $40+ gamble isn't going to pay off, as I don't see how I could use it on my Top Flite Mustang. I had planned to saw off the top of this cowl, and use it as a direct replacement, but I don't think I can open up the front to make it look good with a 4" spinner.

As for the dark blue color: I darkened the exposure to show more detail, it is actaully a typical pale color.
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Old 06-20-2008, 08:05 PM
  #90
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

hey Thorprops the whistle that i have i got from jetpower usa a while ago they also had them at this company called ic4products and they specialised in whistles for the stucka dive bomber, but i think they went under havent been able to find their site.
and it does make that mustang sound well very simillar hehe at level flybys and dives, gonna try to get some video tomorrow.
sorry i cant help you with the mech retracts i used and old set of robarts i had





good luck and happy flying
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Old 06-22-2008, 04:47 PM
  #91
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLVGWnSlKrs

This was the 3rd flight of the day, all on the same charge, so this flight was relatively short. Camera man was, well OK. I've seen better videos, and I've seen much worse. Didn't really catch the gear going up, amd missed the big loop (maybe I should have told him what I was about to do), but some pretty good shots as well.
I was deliberately flying slow near the end of the flight, and managed to get the right wing to drop, but recovery was very quick.

Thru trial and error, I have determined that it is best to land on the mains. Attempts at 3 point landing result in bouncy landings: apparently the main wheels get too far ahead of the CG when I attempt 3 point landings.

Sure wish those Robart parts would come it, it will look SO much better when I can install the gear doors.
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Old 06-22-2008, 09:19 PM
  #92
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Great Forum guys, I need some retract advise. Today was my third flight and the stock retract on the right side blew out. There was no damage to the spar, basically the black plastic flanges blew out and collapsed the retract and she nosed over. My landings have all been right on, this third landing did not hit hard but was faster than the other two. I settled her right on the mains and the retract gave way. Prior to take off I noticed that the retract seemed to have a little more wobble to it so I tried to tighten it up with a linkage adjustment. It really did not seem to make a big difference and was not rock solid like I would have preffered. Any ways I was thinking of a retract with a metal housing like the ones Frank Tiano ( Mr. Top Gun ) has at his website. Let me know what you think.
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Old 06-23-2008, 12:05 PM
  #93
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

I have the same situation, the retract housing broke on a landing and Top Flite doesn't have a replacemente at this moment so looks like I need to go with someone else.
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Old 06-23-2008, 03:17 PM
  #94
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Sounds like more problems with retracts. I thought the reason for the delay was suppose to have fixed this problem. Glad I waited to purchase this plane. Will be looking for something else. Maybe the new KMP Corsair.
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Old 06-23-2008, 06:43 PM
  #95
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Anybody got any pics? I think we would all like to se these retracts the "blew out", I find it incredible that they would break before doing substantial damage to the wing retract bays. You could switch to Robart retracts, but I think they are made from the same type of material (a form of nylon?). CenturyJet offers all metal retracts, but even they can be broken if you land hard enough.

While I've got the podium, let me state my opinion on this Mustang: it is definately not a good 1st warbird. Even if you've been flying R/C for years, warbirds take some getting used to, and I think it is best to start off with an easier to fly, but slightly less scale looking warbirds such as a Hangar 9. For that matter, I don't consider ANY Top Flite warbird to be a good 1st warbird. Warbirds generally have a higher wing loading than sport planes, and the more realistic looking they are, the more so. This means it takes greater care in landing them, and they don't manuver/ turn as sharply.

OR, maybe it's not the pilot's fault, maybe the reason my retracts did not 'blow out' so far (about 10 landings now) is because I installed RoboStruts on mine.

Quote:
ORIGINAL: Hellcat716
Sounds like more problems with retracts. I thought the reason for the delay was suppose to have fixed this problem. .................................
Actually, as I understand it: the problem that was fixed was the wing retract bays. Apparently the problem was that the wooden rails seperated from the wing.
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Old 06-23-2008, 09:14 PM
  #96
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

CJ

I agree this plane is not a good first warbird, but it is a very easy flier. I found that it does land very nice at low speeds but does even better coming in a little hot. Unfortunately the retracts could not handle the speed on grass, probably my fault. The pics are the stock retract that failed, and the new 609 installed on one side. The other retract will be installed tomorrow night.
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:49 AM
  #97
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

mdishinger, you are correct: it does land a little better when coming in slightly hot. That gets back to what I was saying about 3 point landings: altho it will slow down for them, they tend to be bouncy landings.

It appears that the aluminum truinion part began the sequence of failure: it broke thru the housing and caused the housing to seperate from the flange. My thoughts are this: perhaps, as I suggested earlier: those 5 mm struts are TOO robust. In other words: they don't have enough give. That said, it looks like a set of Robart retracts with 3/16" struts is a better option. Not only will they flex more (and hopefully cause less stress on other parts), but it would be much easier to install RoboStruts if you desire. As for mechanical versus air: I'll stick with mechanicals on this aircraft. I'm thinking the Robart mechanicals sell for about $40 ~ $50?
I WILL post a video on my retracts in operation later today.

Another good thing about Robarts: you will be able to use flat head screws instead of those round head ones, making it better looking and aerodynamically cleaner.
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Old 06-24-2008, 11:33 AM
  #98
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Hi, Thanks for the photos of the gear failure. This is exactly what I was concerned about when I saw the retracts. They are not fiber filled glass, they are just plastic. I have mine just about finished and was trying to decide weather to give the stock gear a chance or use some other gear. Looks this answered my question.
Thanks for the heads up on these gear. Looks like Top Flite needs to do some more research. There is just no substitute for quality!
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Old 06-24-2008, 08:44 PM
  #99
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Video of slo-mo retracts:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LIFkga6lA4
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Old 06-24-2008, 10:39 PM
  #100
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Default RE: Top Flite '.60 size' P-51D Mustang ARF: Building & Modifications

Hi Guys...
I am surprised to hear that the retracts that came in the kit were not up to standards...I'm sure Tower will make it right.

I have installed Century Jet air operated retracts in my kit...and if anyone needs the kit pair I'm not using...I'm more then willing to donate them to anyone that needs a set. Just let me know.

I have used Robart mechanicals with great good luck. True I did manage to crack one retract...after at least 100 landings...and I beat these gear up but good. I love to practice take off and landings...so most all I do...but sometimes my landings are a bit less then greased on.

As soon as I have my wing complete...I'll post pictures of my instilation and markings.

Soft Landings Always,
Bobby of Maui
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