RCU Review: ParkZone Slo-V

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    Contributed by: Greg Covey | Published: December 2004 | Views: 64225 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon

    Review by Greg Covey

    Manufactured by

    A Horizon Hobby, Inc. Brand
    Horizon Hobby, Inc.
    ATTN: ParkZone
    Champaign, IL 61822
    Toll-Free: (800) 338-4639

    Distributed By

    Horizon Hobby, Inc.
    4105 Fieldstone Road
    Champaign, IL 61822
    Toll-Free: (800) 338-4639

    Click here to view the Slo-V at Horizon Hobby

    The new ParkZone Slo-V Electric RTF slowflyer is meant for either indoor gym flying or outdoor park flying. The 45.9" wingspan and geared 370 power system enable the Slo-V to fly very slowly at an all-up weight of only 15oz. ParkZone™ Charge-and-Fly™ park flyers come ready to fly. Everything you need to enjoy a relaxing flight in the park is in a single box, including the batteries. No gluing, painting, or hassles! In as little time as it takes to charge a battery pack, about 30 minutes, you're airborne.



    Key Features:

    Wing Span: 45.875 in (1170mm)
    Overall Length: 36.75 in (930mm)
    Flying Weight: 15 oz (0.41kg)
    Motor Size: 370 Power w/gear reduction
    Radio: FM with 3 proportional channels
    Speed Control : Power FET proportional ESC/receiver
    Recommended Battery: 6-Cell 7.2V 600mAh Ni-MH
    Approx. Assembly Time: 10 minutes
    X-Port: Yes
    Charger: DC peak detect
    Ready to fly right from the box
    Includes fully proportional 3-channel FM transmitter, batteries and DC peak detect field charger
    Mode Change Flight Control™ System
    Fully proportional elevator, rudder and throttle
    One-piece wing
    Factory-applied decals
    370 motor with gear reduction
    Carbon fiber fuselage
    Powerful enough for the park
    Slow enough for indoor flight
    X-Port enabled for aerial combat and bomb dropping

    Assembly time required to ready the Slo-V is about 30 minutes

    While it may not actually be "Ready to fly right from the box", it does come with everything needed to get the Slo-V flying in one box. This includes the transmitter, transmitter AA batteries, rechargeable 600mAh NiMH flight pack and DC peak charger. All that’s left for the modeler is approxametly 30 minutes of assembly, which can easily be done while the battery pack is charging. Best of all, the Slo-V is X-port enabled!

    A dual high/low rate switch is provided on the transmitter

    To ready the transmitter, you need only to screw in the antenna and plug in the 8 supplied AA batteries. Not mentioned in the Key Features above is that the transmitter has a switch for high-low rates. This is a nice feature that I have not seen from ParkZone before. The rate settings change the control surface gain on the V-tail. The high rates would be best suited for indoor flying and the low rates for outdoor flying. The low rate limits the amount of control surface travel so maneuvers are smooth and manageable.

    The gear mains, tail gear, and wing guides simply press into place
    There is some amount of assembly required to ready the Slo-V for flight. The gear mains and tail gear simply press into place but the wing requires some sticky-back guides and tape to be applied. My wing arrived damaged but I had no problem pressing it back into shape before applying the plastic guides that hold the proper dihedral. Although a bit beat up looking (probably due to the UPS guy tossing the package into my driveway without stopping), it should still fly fine.

    The V-tail is secured to the fuselage using plastic plates and long thumbscrews

    The tail section must be assembled with a plastic "V" piece and two long thumbscrews. The control rods are then connected on the bottom side of the tail. I needed to initially thread my screws in from the opposite side to get the holes cleared in the plastic "V" piece. The wing is then secured to the fuselage with 4 rubberbands.

    The tail linkage connects without tools and the wing connects with four rubberbands

    I could not find where the manual said to install the wheels so I put them on last just before testing the control surface directions. The wheels simply slip onto the metal axels and are held on with a plastic cap.

    The plastic option tray can be used to attach any X-port Module

    The servos, receiver, and geared motor are all ready to go. I only needed to snap on the plastic option module tray for when I test out the X-port enabled Drop Module.

    My Slo-V was Ready-To-Fly at 15oz

    My Slo-V was ready to fly in about 30 minutes. The control surfaces seemed fine and I really liked the High/Low rate switch function. I can't wait to test fly it

    The Slo-V is similar in size to the popular GWS Slow Stick

    I put my new ParkZone Slo-V next to an old "friend" for comparison; the GWS Slow Stick. The sizes and dimensions looked very similar, if not exact. The big differences that I noticed were in the V-tail design and in the level of integration. The Slo-V comes virtually Ready-To-Fly in a complete kit and it is X-port enabled. This can be an easier path for entry level R/Cers and it makes a great gift!

    A typical take-off with the Slo-V; uneventful, stress-free, and totally enjoyable!

    I managed to video my maiden voyage of the Slo-V which is something I've never done before. It flew great but I did need to land it and re-adjust the tail linkages since my transmitter trim tab was at the end and I was flying with a constant stick offset. All this is captured in the video.

    The Slo-V cruises around a small field next to the parking lot where I work.

    I switched to the low rate setting and it gave a perfect control for the small field I flew in at lunchtime. The high rate setting is likely best for indoor flying. I preferred the low rate setting on the transmitter since I found myself over correcting on the high rates.

    Although the flight time was decent with the stock battery, the 6-cell pack can easily be replaced with a 2-cell Lithium pack that weighs around 3oz like the Kokam 1500mAh cells or the ThunderPower 2100mAh cells.

    Overall, the plane flew fine and I had about a 10 minute flight on my first charge.
    The NiMH pack will get stronger after a few more flights.

    I couldn't tell any difference in flight between the Slo-V and my other favorite slowflyer plane. Although my preference is for a standard horizontal and vertical stabilizer, the Slo-V's v-tail design seems to provide equal authority and is easier to repair. Spare parts are also available, if needed.

    The Slo-V lands without any effort. I simply dropped the power level and let it decend onto the pavement. I also tried a hand-toss of the Slo-V over grass and this worked very well on only 3/4 throttle. Although the Slo-V comes with an adjustable wing saddle to offset the Center of Gravity (CG), I saw no reason to change it from the stock position. For indoor flying, you may want to slide the wing saddle a bit forward to make the Slo-V more tail-heavy and slower.

    The ParkZone Slo-V can be flown either indoors or outdoors. The 45.9" wingspan and geared 370 power system enable the Slo-V to fly very slowly at an all-up weight of only 15oz. ParkZone™ Charge-and-Fly™ park flyers come with everything you need in a single box. In about 30 minutes, you're airborne!

    For spare battery packs, aside from getting a second 7.2v 600mAh NiMH Slo-V pack, the 7 cell, 600mAh NiMH pack used by the ParkZone J-3 Cub is a great choice. For a longer flight duration, try changing to Lithium Polymer battery technology. A 2-cell Kokam 1500mAh pack or 2-cell ThunderPower 2100mAh pack will double and triple your flight time, respectively.

    The manual includes some great tips for first-time flyers and it was well written. ParkZone does not recommend this 3-channel control system for first-time flyers but it can be done successfully with the help of an experienced RC flyer. Spare parts are available for repairs at your local dealer and it is recommended that the Slo-V only be flown in light winds up to 5mph.

    I had a great time flying the Slo-V and it was my first ever video of a maiden voyage. Although the linkages needed to be lengthened, no tools were needed in the field for this alteration. The high/low rate feature on the transmitter worked very well to limit the amount of control surface travel. I feel that the overall completeness of the kit, plane and manual design, and flying characteristics of the Slo-V was a job well done by ParkZone.

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