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Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

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Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

Old 03-20-2006, 08:29 PM
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Default Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

I tried out the Aero Ace some time ago, cool plane. Easy to control but it didn't seem to fly very smooth. ('porpoising' is the term I think). Anyways, I ordered a micro ultrix from [link=http://towerhobbies.com]Tower Hobbies[/link]. I picked up the single-wing version & some batteries. I've gotta admit I like it better than the Aero Ace. I've fixed it up a bunch of times with superglue, was no big deal. The plane is now pretty warped & banged up but it still flies well. One thing to note is you will break a lot of propellers. If you're like me and your definition of "landing" varies with how the plane impacts the ground you will break a LOT of propellers. They're cheap, but it is annoying. I ordered the biplane version of the ultrix today. I'm hoping the lower wing in combination with the rear-facing props will result in fewer broken propellers.

I'm not sure if the lower wing can be removed to deal with higher wind, but I understand that turning the props around to a pull design (like the single-wing) helps turning. I won't be doing that due to the reasons above, and I already have the single-wing version.


Big downside: "It is not possible to request a specific radio channel when ordering
because they are supplied by the manufacturer at random."
You'll find that at every site that sells these and is kind enough to tell you. I ordered two biplanes in hopes that one is on a different channel so that I don't have 3 ultrix on one channel.

I was curious if anyone else has flown these much would care to offer some tips & tricks, mods, comparisons, and such.

Personally if I keep breaking propellers I think I'll try work out some wing-mounted skids that extend lower than the propeller blades for protection. I'll keep on this thread as I get the bipes and play around a bit



If you're too lazy to go to Tower Hobbies or Google and type "micro ultrix" yourself, [link=http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/WTI0095P?FVSEARCH=micro+ultrix&FVPROFIL=++&search3 =Go]click here[/link].

Old 03-21-2006, 09:10 AM
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Default RE: Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

I picked up the Micro Ultrix biplane before the Aeroace so i didn't have much to compare it to when I got it. Here is a quick review:

Its set up right out of the box other than to install batteries in the transmitter and charger. As with most foam aircraft i reinforced the leading edges of the wings with lightweight packing tape for durability. After a first charge I sent it up for its first flight. The climb was slow but it did have a decent glide when power was off. A benefit of this aircraft is the ability to turn without having the throttle on. Turns are slow and wide, definitely not as manueverable as the Aeroace. Flight times was about 3-5 minutes depending on how much glide time you can get out of it. If running full throttle *only option available as it is not proportional* run times get cut down to 2-3 mintues. Its biggest drawback, its fragile as a carton of eggs. I spent more time fixing it than actually flying it. Even simple landings that I didn't think twice about cracked the bottom wing most times. A few times the aircraft caught a gust of wind and nosed in, while not going very fast, this smashed and split the nose a few times which resulted in more tape and glue. I think that this aircraft is overweight for the motors power.

Pro's:
Decent flying abilities
Fairly cheap
Can fly in smaller spaces
Better suited to an indoor flyer
Turning without full throttle

Con's:
FRAGILE
Underpowered
Not wind tolerant at all
Short run times when using power constantly for climb

So, suffice to say, my Ultrix doesn't exist anymore but a pheonix has arisen from its ashes. After getting tired of fixing this airplane, only for mediocre flights, i decided it was time to put it to rest and take the electronics for something better. I wanted to do something about the short run time at full throttle, but take advantage of the turning ability with the power off. So I went and figured a powered sailplane was the way to go. The fuselage is 9.667" dia. Rocket body tube with balsa rocket nosecones for nose and tail. A carbon rod for the eppenage with a V-tail configuration. The wings are 1/8" balsa sanded to an airfoil with a 1.5" Average Chord and 24" span giving an aspect ratio of 16. I'm currently at work so I don't have pictures available here but i'll try and get some this weekend. The final weight was just about 20 gms. but the motors have more power than the AeroAce so climb performace is pretty impressive. Biggest consideration is this thing getting into a thermal as it will not come back down! Flight times range from 5 minutes to over 30 if the wind is right and you can catch updrafts from time to time to keep it in the air. Turns are still slow, but appropriate for what I wanted this aicraft to do, and I wanted to keep the turns flat cause a roll over would be fatal to this airframe.

It's a decent airplane for the money, but the airframe is just too heavy and fragile for the power system they used. It's a fun aircraft to fly for a while, but the electronics have better uses in other airframes.

As for your Aero Ace, add some noseweight *sheetmetal screws work well, mine is a #8x3/4 stainless"* and your porpoising problem will go away and the aircraft will be alot more stable.
Old 03-21-2006, 08:20 PM
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Default RE: Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

Turns are slow and wide, definitely not as manueverable as the Aeroace.
Yeah, I agree with that, although I fly it around in a good-sized lot so I like the more relaxed turns.


Flight times was about 3-5 minutes depending on how much glide time you can get out of it. If running full throttle *only option available as it is not proportional* run times get cut down to 2-3 mintues.
I've been getting closer to 7 to 10 minutes, and I use the throttle quite a bit on the single-wing model, but I imagine the electronics are identical.


Its biggest drawback, its fragile as a carton of eggs. I spent more time fixing it than actually flying it. Even simple landings that I didn't think twice about cracked the bottom wing most times. A few times the aircraft caught a gust of wind and nosed in, while not going very fast, this smashed and split the nose a few times which resulted in more tape and glue. I think that this aircraft is overweight for the motors power.
Although I haven't flown the biplane yet, the single wing version seems durable enough. I break a lot of propellers, but I've never put a serious crack in a wing. Lots of little wing edge tears and a motor came loose. I've also flown it into a brick wall and just cracked up the nose a bit. Fixed all this with superglue. I also think the single wing version climbs quite well. Perhaps the tape you added gave it a little extra weight or offset center of gravity. I wouldn't quite call it 'fragile as a carton of eggs'.


The single wing version has a thin plastic hollow body that cracks easily. I haven't seen the bipe yet in person but it looks to have a foam body from pictures. I imagine the bipe is a little heavier with the same electronics. This is just my two cents though, hopefully I'll get a chance to play with the biplane this weekend.
Old 03-22-2006, 12:28 PM
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Default RE: Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)

I haven't seen the single wing version in our area, so i've never handled one. I've talked with others that also found the biplane to be extremely fragile. Either the wing material is different, or the extra weight of the biplane, it has a tendency to break wings right at the root.

I'm sure also that your getting longer run times on the single wing version than the biplane. From what i've seen the power system is the same, the addition of extra weight and drag outweights the advantages of extra lift from a second wing.

It did become a better flyer after cutting off the lower wing back to the strut.

I wasn't fully disappointed with the Ultrix Biplane, it was a decent flyer. But the electronics are much better suited to a different airframe.
Old 03-23-2006, 06:07 PM
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Default RE: Hobbico Micro Ultrix (Aero Ace alternative)


ORIGINAL: VmcFlyer1

I haven't seen the single wing version in our area, so i've never handled one. I've talked with others that also found the biplane to be extremely fragile. Either the wing material is different, or the extra weight of the biplane, it has a tendency to break wings right at the root.

I'm sure also that your getting longer run times on the single wing version than the biplane. From what i've seen the power system is the same, the addition of extra weight and drag outweights the advantages of extra lift from a second wing.

It did become a better flyer after cutting off the lower wing back to the strut.

I wasn't fully disappointed with the Ultrix Biplane, it was a decent flyer. But the electronics are much better suited to a different airframe.

I bought one last summer (the biplane model) and found it to be fragile as well, the wing material in particular. It dents VERY EASY. The Ultrix Biplane does take a lot more room to fly.

If they made it out of stuff the Aero Ace is made of then it would be a MUCH better plane IMHO. I may get the single wing version to try someday. To me the Aero Ace beats it hands down although Ultrix has the potential to be a great bird if made with the right materials....

Tom

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