RCU Review: Maxford USA Clever Boy

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    Contributed by: Greg Covey | Published: August 2007 | Views: 37113 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon
    Clever Boy ARF

    Review by: Greg Covey
    Assembly Photos: Greg Covey
    Flying Photos: "Papa Jeff" Ring
    Video 1 Pilot: Lynn Bowerman
    Video 2 Pilot: Devin McGrath


    Dealer Info

    Maxford USA Corp.
    DBA: Green RC Models USA

    13909 Artesia Blvd
    Cerritos, CA 90703
    Tel: 562-802-0680
    Toll Free: 866-706-8288
    Fax: 562-802-0650
    Email: info@greenmodelusa.com

    Complete Kit with hardware
    Great ARF value and looks
    Superb Flying Performance
    Float-ready Design
    Optional Suitcase Travel Package

    Weak TowerPro Servos

    Clever Boy Electric ARF

    The redesigned "Clever Boy" from Maxford USA features all wood laser cut parts with carbon fiber landing gear and many unique design extras. The factory assembled sections allow for the ARF to be disassembled in minutes and stored in an optional aluminum travel case. Other options include a detachable float set and an easy to install 120 watt brushless power system.


    • Wingspan: 35 in (900 mm)
    • Length: 30 in (760mm)
    • Wing Area: 243 sq. in (15.70 d)
    • Flying weight: 14 oz

    The 3' long lockable aluminum case not only houses the entire Clever Boy ARF with floats but also has a spare bay pre-cut for keeping your transmitter safe.

    Three sub-micro servos and a micro receiver are needed to complete the kit. Servos, power systems, spare parts, and more are available from Maxford USA.

    ARF Contents

    The main sections come pre-assembled and nicely covered. The control surfaces are already hinged so only the horns need be glued into the pre-drilled holes.

    The 120w brushless outrunner motor is a perfect match for the Clever Boy. With an 8x6 prop and a 3-cell 1000mAh Lithium pack, the model is capable of 3D maneuvers on floats. Although the manual was missing from my review model, a set of instructions for the float set was included. After looking at the parts, I decided that I did not need a manual to complete the Clever Boy.

    Motor Mounting

    The BM2408-21 brushless outrunner motor is rated for 120 watts and can sustain bursts to 150 watts. This is much more power than we'll need for this model so I knew that it would be a great choice for adding on the floats.

    The motor and 15-amp ESC were prepared before mounting it in the plane. After adding a Dean's Ultra connector, I soldered the three wires between the motor and ESC. The trick here is to test the motor direction with a transmitter, receiver, and battery before shrinking the tubing over the bare wire joints. Once you have tested the motor to turn counter-clockwise when viewed from the front, you can then apply heat to the shrink tubing. If the motor spins the wrong way, simply swap any two of the wires from the motor to the ESC.

    The laser cut motor mount allows for several different motor types. The brushless outrunner simply mounts onto the face of the motor mount using three small wood screws. I needed to drill pilot holes into the mount and then added a small amount of thin CA to the holes in the wood before screwing the motor in place. Note that the aluminum mount can be removed from the main motor section when attaching it to the wood by loosening two hex screws. When re-mounting the motor, add some Pacer Z-42 Thread Locker to the set screws so they don't loosen in flight.

    The wood motor mount locks into place and is held by two small screws. It seemed plenty strong but you can also add some ZAP Medium CA to the joint along the firewall, if desired.

    The pre-cut cowl is taped in placed or it can be screwed into position. The prop uses the standard 3mm hardware commonly seem in GWS products. I added the rubber spinner from an old GWS Tiger Moth.


    The entire tail snaps into place and is held by a single screw. I only needed to glue the control horns into the pre-drilled holes in the rudder and elevator. The plastic clevis snaps onto the horn.

    The 3 micro servos mounted easily using the supplied screws. The linkages are pre-cut to length and come ready to attach the "Z" bends to the servo arm.

    Wing Assembly:

    The wing fits perfectly into the fuselage saddle and is held in place by a single nylon screw. The leading edge is locked and aligned by two thin hardwood dowels that are pre-installed.

    At this time, you can choose to either mount the gear mains, wheels, and pants or you can mount the optional float set. I will be mounting the float set since I intend to use them from either water or grass. They are designed to be easily removeable so the Clever Boy will fit back into the case. You can also revert back to the wheels and pants when finished using the floats. The built-up floats are too cute not to use!

    Float Assembly:

    Clever Boy Float Set Installation

    The floats mounted quickly. The design allows for the floats to be disassembled by removing 4 screws. The entire framework is made from very light but strong carbon fiber. A fair amount of thought and craftsmanship went into the design of this model. The parts all fit together well.

    The bottoms of thre pre-made floats are covered with a sheet of clear shrinkwrap to help seal and protect them.


    A small 3-cell LiPo pack like my Cellpro 910mAh fit well inside the fuselage. The 15C discharge rate is a good match for the desired burst current needed. I measured 13.5 amps at full throttle for a power level of 130 watts.

    The Clever Boy on floats was Ready-To-Fly at only 17oz including the 3.2oz LiPo pack. The power system provided about 122w/lb which will allow it to easily take off from water or even grass.

    *Please note that the manufacturer does not recommend to use the floats on grass take-offs as they are made of balsa and may be broken on rocks or other objects in the grass. It has been the reviewer's experience that the floats have proven sufficiently rugged to handle this abuse.

    Test Flying

    Clever Boy Video 1
    CLICK HERE (9meg)

    The Clever Boy ARF on floats performed very well in 5-10mph winds. It was agile yet stable and took off grass at only half throttle. The video shows several take-offs, landings, loops, rolls, and hammer heads. I am impressed with the design and performance using a 3-cell (15C) 910mAh LiPo pack. The only thing I may change is to substitute a better servo for the ailerons as they became a bit twitchy in the wind. One possible substitution for improved performance is the Futaba S3107 Micro Servo or the Futaba S3114 Micro HT Servo.

    After the video was taken, we discovered that the Clever Boy could easily knife edge. It also flew inverted although a bit difficult at first. Everyone loves the performance of this plane and the versatility to take off land, water, and snow.

    Clever Boy Video 2
    CLICK HERE (8meg)

    After replacing the TowerPro aileron servo with a stronger Futaba S3114 HT Micro Servo, the Clever Boy has become a favorite attraction in my local group of R/C friends. I decided to create a second video to show you what this plane can do in the capable hands of a nationally ranked pilot, Devin McGrath. Devin's only comment was, "I want one!"


    The Clever Boy was first designed and manufactured by Green Model in 2003. This 1st generation product had some design issues that were corrected in the 2nd generation Clever Boy in late 2004. The result is a superb flying plane with optional floats and traveling case. I consider this plane a sleeper that few people know about but anyone can fly. Just try to keep it away from your friends!

    Manufacture Information

    Maxford USA Corp.
    DBA: Green RC Models USA
    13909 Artesia Blvd., Cerritos, CA 90703
    Phone: 562-802-0680
    Toll Free: 866-706-8288
    Fax: 562-802-0650

    Email: info@greenmodelusa.com
    Webmaster: admin@greenmodelusa.com
    Website: www.greenmodelusa.com/index.html

    ZAP Glues On-line at Frank Tiano Enterprises

    Pacer Z-42 Thread Locker
    5-minute Z-poxy
    Pacer POLY ZAP(tm)

    Comments on RCU Review: Maxford USA Clever Boy

    Posted by: Oregon Craig on 04/12/2008
    These have never been available - at least since a few months before this review was published. I'll bet they would have been very nice.
    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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