Edge 540T came well packaged and had no damage or covering wrinkles.
The horizontal and vertical stabilizers were both airfoiled
control surfaces. The ailerons and rudder were pre-hinged. The
cowl was pre-painted and came with air-cooling openings.
fiberglass wheel pants had self-aligning holes to match the
fiberglass landing gear. The wing tube joiner is made from carbon
fiber material. It aligns the wing automatically and allows
for easy transport to the field. A 24-page instruction manual
comes loaded with photos and details to help insure a successful
wasn't until I lifted the fuselage that I noticed something
very different. It weighed almost nothing yet was incredibly
strong! I then saw the carbon bars infused with the balsa and
light plywood. I had only seen this type of construction once
before and immediately knew this new design was something special.
I twisted the fuselage and applied pressure in many directions
but there was no give and no creaking noise.
only was the one-piece canopy held by powerful magnets but so
was the light-weight fiberglass cowl. This gave the Edge 540T
a very clean and quality appearance!
motor box is pre-installed with blind nuts, providing perfect
spacing for the spinner backplate without the need for any measuring.
Even the proper thrust angle was already built into the firewall.
magnets keep the one-piece vacuum-formed canopy/turtledeck securely
in place. Front and rear guides provide automatic alignment.
Removing the canopy provides easy access to the battery compartment
which is roomy enough for 4-cell Lipo packs.
included stock self-aligning wheel pants and landing gear legs
are made of lightweight fiberglass. Low profile axles eliminate
bulky bolts and give the wheel pants a super-clean look. For
even more style and lighter weight, carbon fiber wheel pants
and landing gear (GPMA3319)
are available separately!
recommended power system components are as follows:
Planes Rimfire 42-50-800
Out-Runner Brushless motor
Great Planes Silver Series 45A
Micro Precision Servos
Deans Ultra connectors are already installed as are the motor
to ESC connectors. No soldering would normally be required for
talked with Great Planes about the need for servo power and
they recommended using an external BEC on this application,
BEC, due to the 4-cell/4-servo combination. They said while
the 45A ESC BEC should work ok, it is not optimal if you plan
to fly 3D.
I am now going to use a CC BEC, I want to crank it up to 6v
so I will now use some Futaba digital servos because my Futaba
S3115 Micro Precision Servos are not rated for 6v. The S3115
servos may work fine on 6v but there is no guarantee for their
assembly starts by installing the aileron servos. My Futaba S3115
Micro Precision Servos fit perfectly. Two retaining plates are
supplied in the kit for every servo and are used in place of the
rubber grommet and brass eyelet. The plates hold the servo securely
flush to the surface so that they cannot wobble.
manual has excellent assembly photos and instruction. All the
hardware was supplied including the silicone clevis retainers.
main landing gear installed easy and all the hardware was supplied.
I did have to open up one of the wheel pants so it could properly
lay flat against the mains. This was easily done with a razor
knife on the fiberglass pant opening.
weighed the fiberglass gear mains and they are less than 1/4 pound.
They are solid, seem to work well, and look great! I am not certain
what the optional carbon fiber gear and pants weigh.
tail gear uses a nylon bushing to swing the wire on and a metal
bracket and wheel collar to hold it in place. The key here is
to align the metal bracket properly before drilling the holes
to secure it. The assembly is light yet sturdy. I used medium
CA to glue the nylon anchor and post.
wing halves are installed next using the carbon fiber wing joiner
and black nylon thumbscrews. The guide pins provide perfect alignment
and the seam along the fuselage side was perfectly sealed.
horizontal stabilizer is glued in place first along with inserting
the elevator joiner rod at this time. The covering is removed
from both top and bottom sides of the stabilizer after marking
it along the fuselage once properly aligned.
elevator installation is a combination of epoxy on the joiner
rod and thin CA on the hinges. The hinges have been updated from
the manual description to 3 larger pre-cut pieces of hinge material
for each half. I
had no problem with the installation and the alignment was perfect.
RimFire motor comes with the x-mount already installed so you
only need to attach the prop adapter using the supplied screws.
The Edge 540T is designed for the RimFire 42-50-800 outrunner
motor so it simply screws onto the motor box using 4 screws supplied
in the kit.
of using the supplied hook and loop material to mount the ESC,
I used two tie-wraps.
used the Futaba S3150
Slim Digital Servos on the rudder and elevator. The extra torque
and precision of the S3150 servos comes with an extra cost. Since
they are not rated for 6v either, I will likely program my CC
BEC for 5.5v to half the difference between 5v and 6v operation.
used the outside hole on the longer servo arm and second hole
from the base of the nylon control horn as recommended in the
manual to achieve a +- 45 degree swing in the elevator.
pull-pull rudder assembly is used when the design cannot tolerate
additional weight in the tail (for proper balancing) and for precise
aerobatic control. Other designs put the rudder servo in the tail
with a short strong control linkage. Both ways work great so I
am using the pull-pull installation because the Edge 540T will
balance perfectly using the recommended RimFire motor.
only change I made from the manual instructions was to eliminate
those tiny metal crimps. Since the pull-pull "cable"
is really reinforced string, the crimps are not needed as you
can more easily tie a knot in the string and secure it with a
small dab of CA.
the inside fuselage photo, you can see where I installed the first
crimp before I decided it was too much work. After the lines are
all connected and tightened, unscrew the nut and add some thread
locker to the rigging coupler threads and tighten the nut back
here are the general locations for my components. I added the
CC BEC which required soldering the leads to the Dean's connector
on the ESC. I programmed my voltage for 5.5v using the CastleLINK
USB Interface Adapter. I also needed to move the ESC aft so that
it was easier to plug into the battery. The Futaba FASST (R617FS)
receiver was secured to the bottom of the fuselage using double-sided
pack position in the photo gives me a balance around 77mm which
is about as far back as they recommend. By moving the pack forward
about an inch (2" forward was available), my Edge 540T balances
at the recommended 71mm. Keep in mind that where you like your
CG, within reasonable limits, is a personal preference. For 3D
flying, we generally keep it further aft and have all the control
surfaces swing about 45 degrees (minimum) in either direction.
spinner backplate and APC 12x6 e-prop were drilled out with a
5/16" bit to fit on the motor shaft. I had no installation
issues although the backplate ended up quite close to the cowl.
I used the recommendation in the manual for taping the cowl you
if plan on "performing violent maneuvers". Initial motor
testing showed no excessive vibration.