RCU Review: Watt Age Microflyer


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    Contributed by: Greg Covey | Published: December 2004 | Views: 34523 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon


    18480 Bandilier Circle
    Fountain Valley, CA 92708
    (714) 963-0329
    service@globalhobby.net
    watt-age.globalhobby.com


    • Innovative package integration
    • Incredible RTF value
    • Durable design
    • Huge "cute" factor

    • A bit twitchy in flight for beginners
    • Actuator wires can break on a hard crash
    • Radio system prone to interference


    View video of the Micro Flyer
    Video #1 3.76MB
    Video #2 3.32 MB

    When I received one the new Wattage Micro Flyers from Hobby People, I was immediately impressed with the degree of integration in this Ready-To-Fly (RTF) package. The Micro Flyer is a very small indoor or outdoor radio controlled (49MHz) flying plane that is powered by a small electric motor and a rechargeable 150mAh Lithium battery.

    The design is perhaps the world's first mass-produced RTF micro-flyer at an all-up weight of only 31 grams (about an ounce). The Micro Flyer's direction is controlled by a magnetic actuator mounted in the rudder.




    Kit Name: Micro Flyer
    Manufacturer:
    Watt Age
    Price:
    $40.00

    Wingspan: 9"
    Length: 8.25"
    Weight RTF: 1oz
    Airfoil: Elliptically curved polyhedral
    Functions: Right/Center/Left rudder, Motor On/Off
    Duration: 6 minutes or more
    Battery: One 150mAh Lithium cell (included)
    Age Group: 10 years and older
    Frequencies: 27MHz, 49MHz.


    Kit Parts:

    Even the box design was well thought out. It acts as a carrying case to store your Micro Flyer when finished. Instructions are on the back of the box as well as in a separate 4 page manual inside. Everything is included for flight except six AA Alkaline batteries for the hand-held transmitter/charger.


    The design is perhaps the world's first mass-produced RTF micro-flyer at an all-up weight of only 31 grams

    The landing gear simply presses into place.
    A single pre-installed magnetic actuator controls flight direction.

    The three pushbuttons are for left, right, and motor on.

    The hand-held transmitter is also a Lithium cell charger. It has instructions on the back so you don't need to remember to bring the manual to the flying area. The single cell 150mAh pack plugs into the back of the transmitter for charging.

    The side switch has three positions for Off/Charge/Tx. On


    The Micro Flyer was a big hit at a local club this weekend. We gave it a good testing and it flew its little heart out!

    The Micro Flyer seemed to handle a slight breeze without a problem but was much easier to control when the wind was completely gone. It took a bit of learning to master the three button control system, but, it worked quite well after getting familiar with it.

    We tried to ROG on the only thing available to us at the field (my trailer) but the Micro Flyer hit a lip at the edge of the top and fell over the side. We had a good laugh!

    When we flew it outdoors, it wasn't in perfectly calm conditions, but it will need an area the size of a full basketball court. I have been told that it will easily ROG from pavement and my assessment of the power level would confirm that.

     

    The flight times are about 5 minutes with the stock 150mAh cell.

    The Wattage Micro Flyer is perhaps the world's first mass-produced RTF micro-flyer at an all-up weight of only 31 grams or about an ounce. The Micro Flyer is so light that humidity and even a slight breeze can affect the flight performance so it is best flown in no wind conditions. The elevator can be bent to help eliminate excessive lift and the vertical stabilizer can also be slightly turned to compensate for the prop torque. Many of us have learned to fly it using just the power button and the right button. Sometimes I use the left turn button if a breeze pushes it or I want a tighter turn. You can also try flying it with the landing gear removed. The gear easily pull off for storage back in the box.

    It is best to learn to fly the Micro Flyer over soft grass. Some folks reported that on some of the early models the actuator wires may break when the plane hits on hard pavement but this has already been corrected by the manufacturer. Sometimes a hard crash can cause the gearbox front to come forward which disengages the motor pinion gear from the prop. This can be recognized by a high-pitched whine and the prop does not spin. I simply press my gearbox plate back into position. It can also be held with a small drop of glue, if needed.

    The battery should be stored with at least 3v charge in it. A fully charged Lithium cell is 4.2v. I have been charging my battery at home with an Apache 2500 Lithium charger. The range of the plane varies greatly with interference. In a rural area, I can fly it far away until it becomes very tiny without issue. At work, in a high Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) area, the range is only about 40' until glitching occurs.

    Overall, the Wattage Micro Flyer is an impressively innovative package and a great deal of fun for the money!





    18480 Bandilier Circle
    Fountain Valley, CA 92708
    (714) 963-0329
    service@globalhobby.net
    www.watt-age.globalhobby.com

    Comments on RCU Review: Watt Age Microflyer

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    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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