you are just
graduating from your trainer and looking for your first sport airplane,
or an experienced flyer looking for relaxed Sunday flyer, the Super
Sportster brushless EP should be on your short list of no mess, no fuss
The Super Sportster has been around for a while and probably most every
pilot has owned one version of this airframe. ElectriFly has now
introduced this low part count airframe with a brushless configuration
that allows for long relaxed flights or fast blazing fun that can be
put together in one evening. With a low price tag and vibrant red/white
color scheme that is hard to miss, I am excited to have a chance to put
this airframe together and see what she can do.
Sportster arrives in a double boxed package and every component is
individually wrapped and securely taped down. Removing the top
cardboard layer which holds the wing and tail reveals the fuselage and
canopy at the bottom of the box. The cowl and wheel pants along with
the rest of the parts are packaged in side boxes.
plane has a
really low part count. The ailerons are pre-hinged from the factory and
the fuselage has nice cooling holes that do not require cutting or
trimming. The push rod tubes for the elevator and rudder are
pre-installed as well. About the only thing that is left for the
modeler to do is to glue the wing halves together, install the tail and
landing gear and setup the power and radio system which should not take
more than one evening.
written and illustrated quite well. Measurements are given in both
standard and metric. It should not be a problem for a beginner to put
this plane together while following the manual. The recommended throws
and CG are clearly documented as well.
process is actually quite quick. The first step involves preparing the
wing. This is followed by the tail and landing gear. The motor and ESC
are installed followed by the radio system. Finally the cowl and hatch
can be installed and the model prepared for flight. I had the Sportster
ready in one evening.
halves are epoxied together using the wing joiner that is provided. A
clamp and some tape is useful to have here to make sure that the wings
do not move while the glue dries.
servo mount is used to house the aileron servo. The covering is removed
and the mount glued to the exposed balsa. The aileron servo is then
mounted and attached to the factory installed control arms using the
provided servo links. The kit does come with an addendum providing two
separate servo attachments which must be used here.
installed by first removing the small joiner in the back of the
fuselage. I was happy to see that the alignment of the tail in relation
to the wing was perfect out of the box which is a rare occurrence for
me. A small section of covering in the tail and rudder stab has to be
removed to give the epoxy or CA something to adhere to.
Epoxy, I used some thin CA followed by some medium GAP filler CA to
make this a quick installation process. The Elevator can then be hinged
using the supplied CA hinges.
assembly is inserted in the rudder and aligned with the stab then can
be epoxied into the back of the fuselage. The rudder is also hinged
with CA hinges. Before installing the control arms, make sure you
insert the push rods so that you can get a good alignment on their
position. I had to trim a small section of the rudder control arm to
make sure it was not hitting the fuselage. I also had to replace the
provided machine screws with hex head versions that I had sitting in my
screw box since I stripped them by mistake.
require the wood backers to be aligned and epoxied followed by
inserting and aligning the support for the landing wire on the other
side of the wheel pant. At this point the manual suggests that you
remove the landing wire again but I simply installed the landing wire
and squeezed in the circular support and used some medium CA to set it
in place. The wheel is then sandwiched in place with the provided wheel
assembly then slides into the pre-drilled holes in the bottom of the
fuselage and is secured using the provided plastic retainers and self
tapping screws. I really like how the large wheel pants look on this
this build will be supplied by the brushless RimFire 0.25 42-40-1000
motor and a 45A Silver Series ESC.
very nice and has some strong magnets..
simply screwed into the blind nuts that are pre-attached to the
attached to the side of the battery compartment using the provided
double sided tape. Make sure the motor is spinning in the correct
direction before attaching the cowl.
3200mAh battery is a tight fit through the hatch. It can alternatively
be inserted through the bottom wing opening.
only requires 3 servos. The chosen servos were the ES80 micro servos
rudder servos are installed in the bays provided and connected to the
is shown here again for reference.
installed with double sided tape. I secured the antennas to the side of
the fuselage with some tape to make sure that they were opposing each
other and they would not float around in the cabin.
diversity and simple one-touch binding
1.6 x 1.1
x 0.35" (40 x 27 x 9 mm)
Requirement: 4.8 - 6V
of assembly include attaching the cowl, spinner and canopy and setting
the throws per the manual. The cowl fits nicely around the motor spacer
with perfect spacing. It is attached using four wood screws. Use some
tape to hold it in place as you drill and screw it in so it does not
move once you have aligned it. The provided spinner completes the sleek
look of the Super Sportster.
trimmed and glued to the fuselage. I choose to simply tape it on since
I did not yet have the pilot figure which I will be adding later. With
the battery strapped down and the wing bolted on, I balanced the
Sportster on the recommended CG point. Finally, using a throw meter, I
set triple rates to low, high and max available throw.
flight of the Super Sportster EP happened to land on a beautiful day
The weather was in the low 70s with little to no wind. I took the
Sportster to Tom Bass Park, which has a medium size runway, with a box
full of charged batteries and prepared her for flight.
The field assembly of the Sportster is very simple requiring the
insertion of the aileron servo lead and the bolts to hold the wing in
After securing the battery and making sure all the control surfaces
were moving in the correct directions, I taxied to the top of the
runway and slowly applied throttle till the tail lifted of the ground.
A few moments later, the Sportster was airborne with little to no
rudder correction required for straight and true take off. Once
airborne, I had to apply a few clicks of down and left trim to get her
flying straight and level. Rolling inverted, the Sportster required a
good amount of down elevator to fly level. On later flights, I shifted
the battery back a little, which caused less of a drop in the altitude
of the nose during inverted flight.
The first thing I noticed was that the max rates I programmed in the
Futaba 7C were not really necessary (or really safe to fly). With max
elevator applied, the plane tends to snap rather easily. So take care
in setting your throws as recommended till you are comfortable with the
flight characteristics of the Sportster. Basic aerobatics such as
loops, Cuban eights, stall turns are easily flown with the Sportster. I
found that knife edge required a significant amount of throttle to
maintain but did not require major correction besides the rudder and
slight down elevator.
After couple of maneuvers, I did couple of full throttle low speed
passes over the runway and can say that she is quite fast for a small
electric plane. The RimFire is really a strong motor for this airframe.
Slowing things down I started attempting some slow figure eights and
circles right in front of the flight line as a full moon was rising
over the tree lines. It was really fun to see the Sportster cruising
slowly in front of the big full moon. You can really slow the Sportster
down for a leisurely flight around the field.
I noticed the Sportster likes to glide.
If landing on pavement, the landing gear can spring, causing the
airplane to bounce a little. With that said,
landings were a breeze as long as I kept my approach a little longer,
and the glide slope more shallow.
truly a fun plane to fly. The suggested battery can provide long flight
times with less than half throttle on the RimFire 0.25, which still
pulls the airframe around fairly briskly. After a twelve minute flight,
I put back in 1600mA. At full throttle, the fun really begins as you
push the airframe to the extremes of its flight envelope.
If this is your second airplane, you can get introduced to the world of
low wing airframes with at a relatively low cost, and with brushless
power and no nitro mess to clean up afterwards, can concentrate on
improving your flying skills.
The suggested throws for high rates are only a fraction of what the
surfaces can achieve. Use the recommended throws till you are
comfortable with the flight characteristics of the Sportster. At max
deflection you can perform some wild snaps but make sure you are high
enough to recover.
The Sportster is small enough that it can be kept in the back of a
small car for a quick getaway to the flying field after work but still
large enough to present itself nicely in the air. I
preferred to see the pilot figure included in the kit as that is just
one more thing to order.
Overall, I am very pleased with the assembly, looks and performance of
this Sportster EP that I will find a place for it in my hangar and see
if I can throw together some sort of wing bag to protect the wing
during transport. Now, I just need to order a pilot figure and glue
down the canopy and get more time to go out to the field.
Exclusively by Great Planes Model Distributors 2904
Champaign IL 61826
Phone: (217) 398-8970 www.greatplanes.com
Futaba Radios Distributed
Exclusively by Great Planes Model Distributors 2904 Research
Champaign IL 61826
Phone: (217) 398-8970 www.futaba-rc.com
and Pacer Adhesives Distributed
by Frank Tiano Ent.
Ventura Drive E.
Lakeland, Florida 33811
Phone 863-607-6611 www.franktiano.com
The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.