assembly begins by gluing the control horns to all the control surfaces.
This can normally be a fair amount of work but E-flite made it easy with
pre-cut slots in the control surfaces and fiberglass control horns. After
sanding the bottom portion of the horns, they were secured with 5-minute
aileron and flap servo installation comes next. The only issue I had here
was the residue that the cellophane tape left that was holding the servo
covers in place. I used some CA Debonder to remove the residue.
didn't have any 3" servo lead extensions for the aileron servo leads
so I used 6" extensions. Instead of gluing the servo blocks with
5-minute epoxy, I used medium CA.
the parts fit well and the hardware shown was included in the kit. E-flite
did a good job on detailing which servo arm and position to connect the
wing spars were sanded and glued to the wings after first checking the fit
for orientation. There is a good tip in the manual for adding petroleum
jelly to the fuselage area around the wing socket to prevent glue from
transferring during the final fit process.
removable wings are held to the fuselage by two 8-32 socket head bolts on
the manual instructions and parts fit to both be excellent. If the wing
doesn't fit flush with the fuselage, try using a #10 washer on the back pin
to keep the leading edge flush with the fuselage. On my model, the left
wing fit perfect while the right wing needed the washer.
Meets Habu 32:
E-flite Habu 32 is slightly larger than the ParkZone Habu. The older foam
model was a great design that introduced many modelers to EDF. Although I
typically hand toss my PZ Habu without the gear installed, it takes less
than 5 minutes to change it over to fixed gear with a steerable nose wheel.
plan is to fly both stock versions off grass and pavement for a comparison.
E-flite electric retracts are on backorder so I skipped that step for now
and moved on to the rudder servo. The JR DS368BB digital servo fit
perfectly in the bay. The servo presses in place and is then held by the
white plastic strap.
a 24" extension here instead of the recommended 18" extension
because that was all I had on hand. The rudder servo bay is well designed
and I had no issue with the installation.
can use either Goo-Gone or Bob Smith Un-Cure to remove the residue from the
cellophane tape used to hold the hatch on for shipping.
of taping the rudder servo hatch back in place, I tacked it in position
using a tiny amount of medium CA.
stabilizer spar installation was similar to the wing installation in that
it used carbon spars for alignment and they are both removable. When I
glued the spars to the stabilizers, I made sure that the stab was forced up
to favor no gap when viewed from the top of the plane. The result is a very
clean look that enhances the hidden hinging and control cables.
the fit of the stab onto the fuselage required some forcing, the
instructions and photos in the manual worked perfectly.
The elevator halves are controlled by two servos in the center of the
fuselage connected by well-supported sleeved pushrods. A custom pushrod
support is assembled for each side and the rods connect to the control
horns and servo arms without any bending or cutting.
centered by a live radio system, all the 2mm locking nuts were tightened in
place after applying some threadlocker to the control rod threads. The well
fitting parts and supporting hardware has made this an easy assembly.
When assembling and installing the fan unit, care and patience
are required to ensure that it is done correctly. The E-flite 80mm, 5-blade
rotor comes factory-balanced so there is no need to balance it yourself.
However, I did verify my rotor balance using a Dubro Tru-Spin
Prop Balancer and saw no issues.
Since the adapter is mounted onto the motor first, before
mounting the motor in the DF unit, it is a good idea to run the motor
lightly and check for any wobble on the spinning adapter. Even a balanced
rotor will wobble if the adapter doesn't have a true center. If the adapter
wobbles, it needs to be replaced. Since I had no issues with my adapter, I
completed the assembly and did a final light to medium test run before
installing the DF into the Habu 32.
key issue in providing proper assembly is to mount the fan fairing so that
the motor wires come out on the side of the fan unit with the E-flite
label. When mounting the fan unit, care must be taken to make sure that it
sits properly inside the fiberglass intake ducts. Likewise, when mounting
the Mylar exhaust tube, the tube must reside outside the DF unit but inside
the framework. I taped my exhaust tube in place using 3M clear tape.
exhaust tube can be trimmed on the back of the model, if desired, using
curved hobby scissors. I added some 3M Scotchcal silver trim tape for added
E-flite 15 - 25 Tricycle
Electric Retracts arrived today so I got started on cutting away the
covering on the wing bottom side. Note that the wheel wells are already
installed in the Habu 32.
main retracts installed fairly easily but I did have some issues with the
wheel hub adapters. The wire struts that come with the E-flite 15 - 25
Tricycle Electric Retracts are replaced with the stock wire struts. A
Dremel tool is required to cut off the end of the strut (about 1/8")
so that it fits flush in the well. I didn't have a 3" servo lead
extension so I used a 6" extension.
the adapters seemed to spin well on the axle when I first selected the
right size (you get three sets of three sizes in the kit), they would no
longer spin once inserted into either side of the wheel hub. I needed to
carefully drill and sand the inner diameter of the wheel so that it would
spin freely but not be too sloppy.
than the issue above, the electric retracts worked very well and the mounts
were rock solid. E-flite includes rubber wheels with aluminum hubs which
look great on the Habu 32!
Notes: Instead of
sanding the inner diameter of the installed plastic adapters, first drill
the aluminum wheel itself slightly larger so that the adapter goes in with
just a small press.
gear retract installation also requires you to swap the stock wire strut
with the one that comes in the Habu 32 kit. I must have had a burr on the
grub screw holding the stock wire on the retract because it would not come
out, requiring it be drilled out.
the desired strut was installed, I installed the steering servo and all
went well as described in the manual. I had the same issue with the wheel
hub adapters as before and needed to sand them out so the wheel would spin
the retract is installed, the nose gear cover is screwed back in place. I
needed to trim the cover a bit to prevent it from hitting the coil when
steering the nose wheel. Although I programmed my JR 9503 to disable nose
steering when in the up position, it is not required due to the design of
the Tricycle Electric Retracts. The long cover sides were then taped to
help secure it to the fuselage.
also supplies a solid nose gear door for those that want to build a fully
functional nose gear door. I will defer that option as well as the wheel
pants until after I have a few flights on it.
receiver installation was pretty much by the manual. You need plenty of
Y-harnesses and extensions for the Habu 32. I used 12" extensions and
a Y-harness for the flaps, ailerons, and elevators. The E-flite 15 - 25
Tricycle Electric Retracts comes with a nice triple harness so you can plug
all three retracts into the Gear channel. I used small black cable ties to
secure the wires into groups and then secured them to the plywood posts
that are on both insides of the fuselage. The cables were routed under the
battery bay to the far side and I used foam wedges in between the ducting
and fuselage top to keep them secure.
labeled both ends of each servo cable using green 3M Scotch masking tape. I
also use it to secure extensions together. This tape sticks very well and
can be found in most automotive or hardware stores. I haven't decided yet
if I will keep the wings on or remove them for storage.
At first glance, the E-flite 5000mAh 6S 22.2V 30C LiPo pack
looks like it has multiple connectors to choose from and the bullet
connectors are shipped unprotected from shorting. Upon further inspection,
the 6s pack is actually wired as two 3s packs where the final output
voltage is on the blue EC5 connector and the bullet connectors are used to
connect the two 3s sections in series. This is a clever arraignment that
can use the bullet connectors as the final arming connection. However, when
recharging the pack, you'll need to remember to connect the bullet connectors
or the charger won't see all six cells.
Note: Although not recommended
by E-flite, I have become accustomed to always add a 100ohm, 1 watt
anti-spark resistor to my applications of 6s or higher. The E-flite battery
is first connected to the ESC and then the final arming connection is done
by touching the resistor lead to the bullet connector just before plugging
it in. The resultant spark-free arming saves the connectors from having to
be replaced by sparks that can leave significant pitting. I also keep a
foam cap on the male bullet connector until I am ready to arm the plane. If
you are not proficient at soldering, don't attempt to add the resistor and
simply use the pack as recommended.
the canopy hatch ball is threaded, it is best to dab some thread-locker on
it so that it doesn't vibrate free in flight.
pack is shown in a position where it aligns with the back of the battery
platform which results is a CG of 115mm from the leading edge. It is well
secured in place using hook and loop strips on the bottom as well as a
strap. This is the stock configuration and all the material is supplied.
and Air Flow:
Before I completed the last fuselage assembly step on the Habu
32, which is securing the bottom hatch, I noticed that the air flow exit
from the battery bay is through the center of the intake ducts. Horizon has
assured me that the E-flite 80-Amp Pro Switch-Mode V2 ESC will not have any
problems with overheating when positioned as shown in the manual.
E-flite also recommends programming the ESC to match the cell
count of your battery pack, which is 6s on the stock setup. Since the
default setting on the ESC is AUTO for cell count, you need to follow the
steps below to change the setting to a fixed cell count of 6. These steps
are also detailed in the ESC manual.
procedure is as follows:
- Set throttle stick to
- Turn on transmitter, then
- After 5 sec and two sets
of ring tones, move stick to center
- ESC will beep 1 time for
menu 1, which is the cell count menu
- Move throttle stick to
full, then back to center after the low tone
- Move the stick back to
full and wait for the number of beeps for your cell count
- Move stick to center when
your cell count is heard.
- The controller will beep
2 times, indicating you have set the program selection
- Power down receiver and
move throttle stick to lower off position
sealed the leading edge of the bottom hatch with clear tape and marked the
CG location ranges from 100mm to 115mm in 5mm increments.
The stock cockpit plastic must be cut to shape if you intend
to use it. Once cut, it fits quite well inside the canopy. The ParkZone
(PKZ4414) pilot can used, if desired, but needs to be cut lower to allow
sufficient headroom. You can even dress it up to match the Habu 32 colors
with a little paint as shown above.
Alternatively, other options can be re-sized to fit in the
Habu 32 canopy with a few cuts from a Dremel tool. Unfortunately, the large
6s 5AH battery in the Habu does not allow for anything to fit below the canopy.
My solution was to make two cockpits since the spare parts are inexpensive.
My "flying" cockpit is simply lined with black felt. It looks
nice and is very light.
Dolling up a jet cockpit is a great deal of fun and the design
of the Habu 32 cockpit/canopy allows you do gain access for additional
scale upgrades at anytime.