RCU Review: VMAR Easy 3D


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    Contributed by: Greg Covey | Published: July 2005 | Views: 28725 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon

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    Manufacturer Info



    VMAR Distributed Exclusively in North & South America by:
    Richmond RC Supply Ltd
    Phone: 604-940-1066
    www.richmondrc.com


    Hits and Misses
    Hits:
    - Rugged
    - Integrated decals
    - Custom parts
    - Removable wing halves
    - Wide range of flight speed

    Misses:
    - Manual errors
    - Electric conversion was difficult to balance CG
    - Wingloading a bit high



    Features


    • All Light Weight Wood Built Up Construction!
    • Canopy pre-installed!
    • 7075 T6 Main Landing Gear for light weight strength!
    • Plug-In Wings!
    • Scale Fibreglass Cowl! Precut for VMAX 46PRO & 52PRO and most popular 46 size engines!
    • Huge Ailerons, Rudder and Elevator!
    • Pre-hinged Control Surfaces... Factory Installed and Pinned!
    • Full Color Illustrated Assembly Manual!

    Watch the video of the VMAR EASY 3D AR

    Windows Media

    Introduction
    The VMAR EASY 3D ARF is a lightweight 3D capable design with a symmetrical 50" span wing and an all up dry weight of 4.25 to 4.75 lbs. The design uses hand-chosen light weight balsa directly from block stock and a new transparent POLYCOTE ECS covering.

    The POLYCOTE ECS covering utilizes Ultratough Polyester, enhanced graphics and detailing inside the covering and very minimal Sure Seal Seams to produce a totally fuel proof, high strength, lightweight, ultra durable covering.

    The main gear set offers premium strength and light weight! All this adds up to premium 3D performance on a very rugged design! I'll be converting the new Vmar Easy 3D from glow power to clean and quiet electric power.



    Specifications


    Kit Name: EASY 3D ARF
    Manufacturer:
    VMAR

    Span:
    50.4 in (1280 mm)
    Area: 690 sq in
    Airfoil: Symmetrical
    Length: 45 in. (1143 mm)
    Flying Weight (Dry): 4.25-4.75 lbs (1932-2159g)
    Engine: .40-.52 cu in. VMX-46PRO Recommended. For High Performance use VMX-52PRO
    Radio: 4-5ch with 5 servos. Computer Radio to utilize Flaperons.
    Main Gear: 7075 T6 Aluminum
    Cowl: Fiberglass



    Assembly

    The ARF model comes well packaged and all the parts are individually wrapped. There was no damage or covering touch-ups needed on my model. The ECS graphics were integrated into the covering (not decals).

    The wing uses 2 aluminum bars for strength and perfect incidence. The manual uses color photos on a glossy page...very nice! The text instructions use step-by-step procedures to ensure a correct assembly. The whole kit is highly integrated and has very few parts.

    The wing halves and tail sections were perfectly covered and all control surfaces were pre-hinged. I test pulled on each control surface and nothing budged. I was off to a great start! Here are some different views of the fuselage. The build is not what we would consider light for electric but it is high quality and a very solid design. This will make for a nice model that you don't have to be delicate with in the car or at the flying field.

    Mounting the Motor


    My conversion to electric power will use an AXI 4120/14 motor and a Radial Mount Set from Hobby Lobby. To mount the motor, I needed a 1" thick balsa piece and a 1/4" thick plywood piece to obtain the correct distance from the firewall to the spinner backplate. I used #8-32 2" long screws and t-nuts to secure the motor to the firewall.

    The motor mounted easily with plenty of space left over in the firewall opening for the motor wires to run inside to the ESC.

    The fiberglass cowl fit perfectly over the motor and allowed the prop adapter to extend without any cutting.

    I used an HLHS225 2-1/4" Spinner from Hobby Lobby that fit well over my APC 14x7 e-prop and found that it was easy to install. The outlined area in the cowl was cut away to provide cooling air flow past the motor and into the fuselage area.

    Assembly

    The linkage hardware all comes with the kit and the control horn holes are pre-drilled which makes installing the linkage a quick job.

    I used Loctite on the threaded areas. I typically use Loctite on any threaded surface except for prop adapters. I was going to replace the slider easy links with snap keepers but when I went to tighten the hex head "grub" screws, I felt it sink into the control rod. This should prevent the rod from slipping along with the applied Loctite.

    The tail pieces needed some of the covering removed before gluing. Both stabilizers fit perfectly without any problems with incidence.

    The control horns holes are pre-drilled for easy linkage installation. The manual contained some errors as it suggested that there were two elevator halves and separate linkages for each half. Perhaps the design was recently upgraded for simplicity.

    Landing Gear

    When I installed the landing gear on my Vmar Easy 3D, I wanted more than just the stock wheels. To improve the look, I added some Hangar 9 Funtana .90 (HAN2683) wheel pants and mounted them using the stock supplied hardware with a set of Sullivan (888) 5/32" Wheet Pant Brackets.

    The gear mains simply screwed into the pre-drilled holes on the fuselage bottom. The tailwheel assembly was pressed into the pre-mounted brass tubing on the rudder and screwed into the pre-drilled holes on the bottom of the tail.

    Linkage

    I connected the rudder and elevator linkage using the stock hardware in the kit. The instructions were a bit confused about how many servos were used for the elevator. My suspicion is that an earlier or larger version of the kit used one servo per elevator half. The Easy 3D uses a single piece elevator so only one servo is needed. Additionally, the servo bays in the tail are labeled on the covering for rudder and elevator.

    Again, I used some of the new FMA DS300BB Digital Servos. Although this project does not really make the servo features shine like when calibrating multiple servos per control surface or using an unregulated supply voltage, their control precision has spoiled me.

    I used red Loctite on all the threaded parts of the linkage. I also drilled a hole in the plastic tail wheel mount as a final feed for my antenna run.

    Battery and Wiring

    I also added a Tower Hobbies System 3000 On/Off Switch assembly in between the UBEC output and the receiver

    The motor direction of rotation was tested with the prop removed before re-mounting the cowl, prop, and spinner. If the rotation is reversed (clockwise) you can simply swap any two of the three wires from the ESC to the motor. The Jeti Advance ESCs are supplied with mating connectors for the motor wires.

    Since the Jeti ESC was an Advance version but not an Advance PLUS version, I could only change the brake setting to OFF and the timing to HARD. Hard timing is used for outrunners like an AXI motor.

    My new 4-cell Kokam 3.2AH (20C) pack weighs 12.8oz. It is shown with an 8-cell, 3.0AH NiMH pack for size comparison. Note that the new cell width is the same as a sub-C cell length. The 4-cell Lithium pack has a voltage equal to about 14 cells of 3300mAh NiMH which weighs about 26oz or twice the weight of the Kokam pack. This is a pre-production test pack without the taps to monitor each cell. The production packs with taps produced by FMA Direct will be called "Skyvolts".

    I slightly modified the hatch by removing the balsa tongue and gluing a small piece of Velcro which sticks to the battery. The other side uses the stock screws for now.

    The 4-cell Kokam 3.2AH pack mounted fairly easily using some Velcro and a EPP foam wedge. The battery was supported up front using the stock plywood runners and motor mount screws. In the rear, it was attached to a Velcro strip that I glued onto the landing gear plywood plate and then further supported by a foam wedge in between the wing bar and Lithium pack. It was easy to insert and supported from movement in any direction.

    Was my Easy 3D now ready to fly?



    Flight Time

    My Vmar Easy 3D was looking good! Unfortunately, when I checked the balance, the plane was tail heavy even with the Lithium pack all the way forward against the firewall. I decided to replace the the two FMA DS300BB Digital Servos in the tail with HS-85 Metal Gear servos that weigh about half the weight. It will reduce 1.5oz in the tail section.

    I dropped 1.5oz in my tail by switching to the HS-85MG servo. It has the strength of a standard servo but only half the weight. My Easy 3D was RTF at 74oz (4.6lbs) using the 13oz, 4-cell, Kokam 3.2AH (20C) pack. The CG was still a slight bit aft but reasonable to test fly.

    Test Flying:

    The Easy 3D takes off with plenty of power on it's maiden voyage

    On the maiden flight, the Easy 3D took off with plenty of power! After a little trimming, we noticed that the plane was quite pitch sensitive. Even though we could slow it down to a crawl in the sky or speed it up very fast, the controls were too twitchy for most aerobatic maneuvers. We decided that it was still too tail heavy and brought it in for a nice landing unharmed. It was time to move the tail servos forward.

    I moved the servos in the tail to an area just forward of the ailerons. The short metal rod linkage was replaced with longer runs of #574 Sullivan-brand Gold-N-Rod nyrod to keep the weight down. The CG was now just forward of the recommended 135mm aft of the wing leading edge. I felt that we were ready to test fly it again.

    The new CG setting made the Easy 3D too nose heavy to hold a hover.

    On our second set of flights, we tested the Easy 3D with two pilots and also video taped one of the flights. Although the Easy 3D loved to roll and loop, it was now too nose heavy to hold a hover even though we had plenty of power. The plane could be slowed down to a crawl and remain stabile or shoot straight up into a long vertical climb.


    Summary


    The VMAR EASY 3D ARF comes well packaged and the POLYCOTE ECS graphics are integrated into the covering for a great look. My electric conversion weighed right in the acceptable range specified by the manufacturer. The AXI 4120 motor and 4-cell Kokam 3.2AH power system provided unlimited vertical climb capability and was easy to install. Although we could not achieve great 3D performance, the aerobatic capability of the Easy 3D is very good and the thick "D" shaped airfoil provide a wide range of flight speed from fast passes to a slow crawl for landing.

    Aside from the stunning looks, especially with the added wheel pants, the Easy 3D is built rock-solid so it can survive flying on a windy day and being banged around in your trunk. The 50" span wing is a convenient size to keep assembled for easy readiness for your next flying fix.




    Manufacturer Information


    VMAR Distributed Exclusively in North & South America by:
    Richmond RC Supply Ltd
    Phone: 604-940-1066
    www.richmondrc.com


    Hobby-Lobby
    6535 Premier Drive
    Brentwood, TN 37027
    615-373-1444
    sales@hobby-lobby.com
    www.hobby-lobby.com

    FMA Direct
    5716A Industry Lane
    Frederick, MD 21704
    Ph: (800) 343-2934
    Tech/Service: (301) 668-4280
    www.fmadirect.com

    Comments on RCU Review: VMAR Easy 3D

    Posted by: Bader Al Mutawa on 01/13/2011
    did you manage to make it hover if yes give me link to the hover video
    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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