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Time to convert?

Old 07-26-2009, 07:09 PM
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Jetdesign
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Default Time to convert?

10 hours, 500 miles, roughly two tanks of gas, and a quart of oil... a grand total of $150 today for 6 gallons of glow fuel. I was thinking about electric flight the entire time.

My situation:

I'm in college for another year and a half and live nowhere near a decent hobby shop (hence the 4 hour trip). I'm relatively new at flying planes - this is my second summer. I'm currently flying...well it's posted at the bottom... and am ready to move up to a higher quality pattern ship. I'm flying Sportsman, coming in a close second every time this summer. Have a dream of Nats next summer and making that the time to move up to intermediate.

I was starting to look at the YS 1.40's, however I just started having my first troubles with my YS 1.10 and the thought of burning even more than my current 20 gallons/summer is pretty unnerving.

The switch to electric seems obvious, right? Maybe not...

Having a fleet of 3 glow planes and a full bore electric pattern plane sounds cumbersome; my apartment and car are pretty small. Converting my fleet to electric is too expensive to do in a year, and my biggest question/concern: the learning curve.

Is it a bad idea to start with lipo/electric power with twin 5 cell batteries, $200 ESC's, and (roughly) a $1000 airframe? Being in my situation I probably would end up with Zippy battery packs and Turnigy electronics, at least to start.

I love watching the electric pattern ships - they glide by silently and full of grace, then explode tons of energy instantaneously into limitless verticals.

I also love the sound, smell, smoke, feel and throttle response of a YS. The "YS blues" are frustrating, but being a mechanical engineer I am really determined to become a "YS mechanic" although its starting to seem like the way to do that is with a pair of thirsty engines.

Ok pretty much I'm thinking out loud (have 10 hours of electric thoughts and questions piled up in my brain!) and have one last question for now:
Is there a big difference in feel between an electric and a glow pattern plane? I don't have tons of experience but have gotten used to the way my planes feel, especially in relation to the way my engines sound.

Thanks for listening, and for any thoughts!
Old 07-26-2009, 07:17 PM
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bobferguson
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Default RE: Time to convert?

I have a friend that flys a 2M pattern electric plan. The big difference he said is the quick reponse of the electric motor and finer control of speed.
Old 07-26-2009, 08:59 PM
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byoung466
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Default RE: Time to convert?

The electrics can fly deeper into the maneuver before you add power, but the YS 1.70 probably can do the same I have not flown one since changing to electric.

The deference in throttle response is a slight learning curve.
Old 07-27-2009, 02:08 AM
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tIANci
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Default RE: Time to convert?

Converting from EP to glow is interesting. You wonder why the plane has no sound and where the throttle is at. But we need to learn to watch the plane and not listen for the engine. I love EP and its been so much more enjoyable for me despite the higher start up capital (batts & chargers).

I have spoken to some competitive flyers who are flying 2x2 planes. They are all GP converts into EP. They love EP, throttle management seems more linear to them and they love the uplines and downlines.

If you want performance and not break the bank then Zippy and Rhino 5S 20C 4,900 packs are fine. As for ESC you may get away with a Turnigy etc but not a cheap motor. Bearings tend to fail on those cheap motors. I would say go with the branded motors. Cheapest will be Hyperion's 5025, they seem to perform well enough. As for a plane ... look at the Sebart Wind 110, she is a nice size to handle and would be competitive enough from what the owners are saying. I am hoping to get my hands on one soon! If you want more flying time, then have a look at the Angel S 50 ... she flies really nice albeit a little small.

Okay ... the throttle is not really linear, you need to adjust your throttle curve but then you do not worry about the motor being in the power bend etc. All the best ...
Old 07-27-2009, 10:33 AM
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Default RE: Time to convert?

hey Joe, just some thoughts from my side:

- I found flying in pattern makes you want to fly your best plane all the time so you understand it perfectly. You'd want at least one spare plane so you have something to fly when you have some work on the other one. The other planes you can sell. That's what I did.
- you can fly perfectly well thru sports and intermediate with the Sebart 110 Wind. This will save you a lot of money compared to a 2meter ship
- I wouldn't invest anymore in glow. So forget the YS140 but do stick with your YS110. What I like about this size plane is if you stick a nice big tank in there you can fly for 16-20minutes. This gives you a lot of practice time you won't get on electric.

Like Tianci says, Zippy or Rhino are perfect batteries but don't go cheap on the motor.

Hope this helps,

Volkert
Old 07-27-2009, 08:26 PM
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Jetdesign
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Default RE: Time to convert?

Thanks guys, lots of good stuff above.

I will look into the Wind, but already having a plane that should be 'competitive through intermediate' I might want something a step up?

I guess there's the option of buying used and converting to electric, too.
Old 07-28-2009, 12:28 AM
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Default RE: Time to convert?

Joe ... for me I'd rather get a new plane, esp today's planes like Sebart which are all EP ready and makes life so much easier for you. But if its a mint second hand Oxai 2x2 at $500 then of course, fly like like you stole it! Cheapest nice flying 2x2 might just be the Fliton Element 170, Bill says she flies ever so well. Only issue is to ensure that you do not get a porky one, a few came out of the factory overweight, just a few.

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