RCU Review: Great Planes F-86 Micro EDF

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    Contributed by: Geoff Barber | Published: August 2012 | Views: 13494 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon
    RCUniverse.com Review of the Great Planes F-86 Brushless Micro EDF
    Geoff Barber

    Email Me

    Great Planes
    Great Planes Model Distributors
    P.O. Box 9021
    Champaign, IL 61826
    Phone: 800-637-7660

    Toward the end of WWII, the world saw the first operational jet powered fighter - the ME 262. After Germany's development, it was apparent that the rest of the militarized countries would have to catch up.

    While the P-51 did battle the ME 262, North American (the manufacturer for the P-51) had started designing a jet-powered fighter. Their first attempt was the FJ-1. Using a modified P-51 wing, it turned out to be a less than ideal candidate for the military. Back from the drawing board in early 1945, North American had a contract to build three XP-86s (still utilizing a straight wing) for the United States Army Air Force. After more testing, it was determined that the straight-winged design of the XP-86 should be changed to a swept-wing to gain more speed. With this modification, the F-86 Sabre was born.

    Now we can all have our own F-86 Sabre! New from Great Planes, this brushless, micro EDF seems to have it all... But let's take a closer look to see what she's got!

    • Almost No Assembly
    • Box Doubles as Carrying Case
    • 2.4 gHz Tactic Radio Included (RTF Version)
    • Available in RTF and Tx-R versions
    • DC 7.4v LiPo Battery Charger Included
    • Transmitter Batteries Included

    • None as Tested

    Skill Level:

    Time Required to Assemble:

    Frustration Level:

    What do these ratings mean?

    Name:Great Planes F-86 Micro EDF

    Price: $149.99 (RTF) (Accurate at time of review)

    Price: $139.99 (Tx-R) (Accurate at time of review)

    Stock Number: GPMA1771 (RTF)

    Stock Number: GPMA1770 (Tx-R)

    Wingspan: 15 in (381 mm)
    Length: 14.4 in (366 mm)
    Weight: 2.35 oz (67 g)
    Wing Loading: 6.4 oz/ft² (20 g/dm²)
    Radio Used: Included 2.4 Ghz Tactic radio (RTF)
    Battery Used: Included 7.4 V 250 mAh LiPo
    Channels Used: 4 Total - Aileron, Elevator, Throttle, and Rudder

    Items Needed To Complete:

    • AnyLink Adapter or Tactic Transmitter Required with Tx-R version.
    • Nothing- Everything is Included, Though the Pilot Comes Unpainted.

    The F-86 arrived in a sturdy box that doubles as a carrying case. The protective foam packing does a great job of keeping its contents safe. Also included with the plane and transmitter are the transmitter batteries, the flight battery, an unpainted pilot figure, and removable landing gear. This review is based on the RTF version, but the Tx-R is identical, minus the transmitter.

    The included 250 mAh LiPo battery and DC charger are a nice touch, along with the Tactic TTX402 transmitter and Tx batteries. The 11,500 kV brushless, 3-bladed 30mm ducted fan unit was pretty cool and really screamed at full throttle! Looking though Sabre, you can see how clean the ducting is, helping the fan unit be as efficient as possible.

    A unique bell-crank system is employed to operate the functional ailerons, and the magnetic canopy/hatch holds the battery in place perfectly.

    I really liked all the detail on the Sabre. Out of the box, the plane is painted, the decals are installed, and there are LOTS of panel lines molded into the foam!

    After installing the transmitter batteries, I connected the flight battery and snapped the canopy in place. That's all that was required to get the F-86 ready to fly!

    The wire landing gear is optional, and they slide into mounts on the
    bottom of the wing and fuselage.

    Tactic AnyLink

    (Not Included with the RTF Version)

    This is the new Tactic AnyLink transmitter adapter. It is a small device that is attached to the back of your favorite (non-Tactic) transmitter. For the purpose of this review, I used my Spektrum DX7. Though the RTF F-86 Sabre includes the Tactic TTX402 transmitter, I decided to use my Spektrum DX7 to highlight the wide array of transmitters that can be used with the AnyLink adapter.

    Product Spotlight: Tactic AnyLink 2.4GHz Universal Radio Adapter

    A transmitter alone can only do so much. But a transmitter with AnyLink? can do wonders. It's so revolutionary that a patent is already pending, and so simple to use that it takes only seconds to add.

    AnyLink works with virtually any transmitter,regardless of brand, band or modulation. AnyLink enables your transmitter to send out a true, 2.4GHz signal ? and operate with all of the interference-free dependability of a frequency-hopping, spread-spectrum system. AnyLink offers all of the convenience, versatility and benefits listed above for far less than the cost of a new 2.4GHz radio system.

    Flying the F-86 using the AnyLink adapter is easy! The ability to use almost any of the major branded transmitters is really a cool feature, and opens the Flyzone and Great Planes Tx-R aircraft up to everybody! With this adapter, anyone can have a ball with Tx-R!!!

    Installation began by applying the Duo-lock hooked material to the AnyLink adapter and the back of the transmitter case. With the adapter in place, the wires were then connected to the AnyLink and the Transmitter.

    Reviewer's Note: Make sure you read the manual to ensure proper use of the adapter. There are several important warnings regarding the operation of the AnyLink!!!

    For example, when using the DX7, the transmitter power switch MUST NOT be turned on - this will cause the AnyLink to stop transmitting its signal!


    The manual is just what I expect from Great Planes - first rate! The illustrations are clear and the written instructions are easy to read and understand.

    There was a slight breeze blowing the evening of the maiden flight, but not enough to worry me about flying the F-86. For the first flight, I decided to hand launch the Sabre. I pushed the throttle stick to full and the 30mm ducted fan came to life - she really screamed at me! I gave the F-86 a quick toss, similar to throwing a dart. The little Sabre flew straight ahead, and gained altitude quickly!

    I flew the micro jet for a couple of minutes to get a feel for her - one click of 'up' elevator trim was all she needed. After a pair of circuits around the pattern, I brought the F-86 in for her first landing. Since the plane is light, she set down gently in the grass next to our field's runway very gently.

    I decided to install the landing gear and see how the Sabre would do taking off from the ground - I must say that I was impressed! At full throttle, the little EDF screamed to life again and pushed the F-86 forward. About 15 feet is all it took to get the Sabre in the air! Again, she climbed out with authority.

    I tried some simple maneuvers with the Sabre - loops and rolls are accomplished with ease, though I found a little up elevator is required before rolling.

    Before bringing her in with the landing gear, I decided to try some slow flight. While the F-86 will slow down nicely, you have to respect the stall - after all, it IS a JET! Even still, recovering from a stall was easy enough with some altitude.

    I brought the Sabre in for its first wheeled landing, and I was pleased with the results. It did bounce a couple of times, but was still manageable. On subsequent flights, I was able to land with no bounce - I just had to land with a little more speed - she likes to be flown to the ground. Flight times were right around the 4-5 minute mark - four minutes for high speed flight, but I was able to pull five minutes out with good throttle management.

    With the maiden flight done, I bound the F-86 to the AnyLink adapter mounted on my Spektrum DX7. After setting up the control throws and checking operation, I turned the Sabre loose again. She flew no differently than with the included TTX402 transmitter! Well done, Tactic - this is a great addition to almost any transmitter!!!

    Check out the video to see the F-86 Sabre in action!

    Great Planes F-86 Micro Brushless EDF

    I really like the F-86! From start to finish, it was easy - the only items to install were the batteries and the landing gear. Flying the F-86 will be easy for any intermediate pilot, and everyone will have an enjoyable time with it!

    I would definitely say that the Great Planes F-86 Sabre is a keeper... I think I'll keep 'er in the car for those spur of the moment flights!

    Great Planes
    Great Planes Model Distributors
    P.O. Box 9021
    Champaign, IL 61826
    Phone: 800-637-7660

    Distributed by
    Great Planes Model Distributors
    P.O. Box 9021
    Champaign, IL 61826-9021

    Comments on RCU Review: Great Planes F-86 Micro EDF

    Posted by: jbfly on 08/28/2012
    F-86 is great...GET RID OF HE MUSIC.
    Page: 1
    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.

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