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Aerofoam T-45

Old 06-08-2021, 02:40 PM
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rhklenke
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Default Aerofoam T-45

This showed up on the porch this morning...




Old 06-08-2021, 02:40 PM
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rhklenke
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This is what was inside...



Old 06-08-2021, 02:42 PM
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I've got a bit of painting to do before I start assembly...


Old 06-08-2021, 02:54 PM
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Viper1GJ
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Looks great. Post pics of the build.
Gary
Old 06-08-2021, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Viper1GJ View Post
Looks great. Post pics of the build.
Gary
Will do! Initial experimentation undertaken this evening seems to indicate that Rustoleum white primer is effectively the same color as the base white on the aircraft. I have to wet sand some of the markings off and repaint those areas so I can implement my selected scheme. That will take a few days, and the new graphics from Callie should be here by then. After that, the build will commence in earnest.

The plane should be at JoK, hopefully successfully test flown...

Bob
Old 06-09-2021, 05:25 AM
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yeahbaby
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So you’re saying the rattle can paint from rustoleum works on the foam?
Old 06-09-2021, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by yeahbaby View Post
So you’re saying the rattle can paint from rustoleum works on the foam?
I *think so*. So far, the primer goes on well and actually matches the white on the fuselage. I haven't tried the color yet...

Bob

update: I put the color coats on the vertical stab. One side came out fine, but I got some crazing on the other side. I believe that it's a problem with how I applied the coats rather than a problem with the foam. I'll let it dry for 48 hours and then sand and try again.

I think for the other parts, the key is getting three lighter coats of the primer on and fully cured before attempting the color coats.

More updates as I proceed.

Last edited by rhklenke; 06-09-2021 at 07:36 AM.
Old 06-09-2021, 08:06 AM
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Looks like a good project. I too have one of the new T45s and will do in the basic Tiger scheme at this point.

I do have a lot of experience with this paint scheme as I have made the effort on a Jet Legend T45. The yellow, red and blue are not that difficult to do. The background is the most difficult. It too me 3 attempts of painting and sanding to get close but I am still not sure I have the final color. My suggestion is just dusting on the silver on the white background to get the proper effect. The full scale is in fact silver but looks white in many of the pictures. I worked with LCDR Gabe Pincelli on the project and he was extremely helpful.

Good luck and I look forward to seeing your results. The T45 is my favorite project.

Paul
Old 06-09-2021, 09:30 AM
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Paul,

Thanks for the info. As someone mentioned when discussing this T-45 model, its a "happy hour" airplane. Thus, by rendition is going to be very much "semi-scale."

I know that the base color is listed as a light sliver over white, but the one picture in the bright light it looks very much like white. I'm going to keep the base matte white color for the fuse and lower wings and just add the blue, red, and yellow to that - along with Callie's graphics, which should be here any day now.

If I can get that to look good, I'll be happy.

Bob
Old 06-09-2021, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by rhklenke View Post
I *think so*. So far, the primer goes on well and actually matches the white on the fuselage. I haven't tried the color yet...

Bob

update: I put the color coats on the vertical stab. One side came out fine, but I got some crazing on the other side. I believe that it's a problem with how I applied the coats rather than a problem with the foam. I'll let it dry for 48 hours and then sand and try again.

I think for the other parts, the key is getting three lighter coats of the primer on and fully cured before attempting the color coats.

More updates as I proceed.
Based upon my own prior projects, I’d second your suspicion that the crazing is due to prior application. On some rattle-can jobs where I couldn’t apply a second coat right away I’ve had to wait more than a week between coats to prevent crazing of the prior layer. Hope that helps.
Old 06-09-2021, 12:07 PM
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Overall, they fly great. I am quite enjoying it in the big picture.

I'm running a Cortex, but it flies great without it.

Check you canopy and turbine hatch latches, mine weren't glued in very well.

Still can't get my main gear to retract fully in flight no matter what I try. Mike has new motors on the way for me.

The brakes seem weak overall even with the 9.9v life recommended for the gear and brakes.

The strut support behind the front gear that connects to the fuse is weak at the base and broke on my first flight

I can get almost 6 minutes on one tank with the K-85 G4. I do 5 1/2 and have a little less than a 1/4 left with mixed throttle.

Using the stock UAT, that seems to be working well. Went through and safety wired all the fittings on all the tanks.

The full slats with full flaps will make it float, and the slats aren't actually needed but are fun. The slats should make some low-speed high alpha fun once I'm satisfied with the gear and such.
.
Overall it's not bad and the price is hard to beat.

Thinking about the L-39 next.

Last edited by Desertlakesflying; 06-09-2021 at 12:15 PM.
Old 06-09-2021, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by highhorse View Post
Based upon my own prior projects, I’d second your suspicion that the crazing is due to prior application. On some rattle-can jobs where I couldn’t apply a second coat right away I’ve had to wait more than a week between coats to prevent crazing of the prior layer. Hope that helps.
Yea, thanks - I think that was it. One side came out OK, but the other side crazed. I was trying to use light coats a few minutes apart, but I think I waited just a bit too long before the second coat and the first coat had almost dried to the touch, but wasn't cured underneath...

Bob
Old 06-09-2021, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Desertlakesflying View Post
Overall, they fly great. I am quite enjoying it in the big picture.

I'm running a Cortex, but it flies great without it.

Check you canopy and turbine hatch latches, mine weren't glued in very well.

Still can't get my main gear to retract fully in flight no matter what I try. Mike has new motors on the way for me.

The brakes seem weak overall even with the 9.9v life recommended for the gear and brakes.

The strut support behind the front gear that connects to the fuse is weak at the base and broke on my first flight

I can get almost 6 minutes on one tank with the K-85 G4. I do 5 1/2 and have a little less than a 1/4 left with mixed throttle.

Using the stock UAT, that seems to be working well. Went through and safety wired all the fittings on all the tanks.

The full slats with full flaps will make it float, and the slats aren't actually needed but are fun. The slats should make some low-speed high alpha fun once I'm satisfied with the gear and such.
.
Overall it's not bad and the price is hard to beat.

Thinking about the L-39 next.
Thanks for the info! Are you running the gear off of the UBEC? Mike said that he is running his off of it with it with the gear and brakes both getting 7.4V

Bob

Last edited by rhklenke; 06-09-2021 at 03:51 PM.
Old 06-09-2021, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by rhklenke View Post
Thanks for the info! Are you running the gear off of the UBEC? Mike said that he is running his off of it with it with the gear and brakes both getting 7.4V

Bob
No, mine are on their own 9.9v life since the 7.4 wasn't enough juice to get the mains to retract fully, and I'm using a Spektrum power safe. I have the power to the brake and gear controller and just a signal wire from the gear controller to the receiver.

Going out tomorrow to try it again
Old 06-12-2021, 06:28 PM
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I can now say definitively that Rustoleum spray paint does not attack the foam. I was able to get the fuselage and tail surfaces painted and the incorrect markings (for this aircraft) removed.

You do have to be careful with taping on the aircraft for painting. Even the green Frog tape will, if you are not careful, lift not only the paint you put on, but also the original paint and the original markings.




Old 06-12-2021, 06:35 PM
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The rudder is actuated by a direct-drive servo. This servo has a fitting, shown in the photo, screwed onto the servo output. I found that this fitting, was not tight on the servo output and had a fair amount of play in it. I tried tightening the servo arm screw, but when I did, it caused the servo to bind - significantly.

I removed this fitting and sanded off the portion of it that fits onto the output shaft to keep it from binding on the servo case when the screw is tightened. I did it a little at a time and checked to see if it was enough. After several iterations, I succeeded in removing enough material that the servo arm screw could be tightened down all the way and not have the servo bind. The result was the elimination of the play in the fitting.

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Old 06-12-2021, 06:40 PM
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I took a look at the "bubble trap" that is included with the aircraft - I did not call it a UAT as UAT is really a "brand name." I'm a little bit concerned if it will function well, and also concerned that when its mounted under the receiver board, you can't see it to determine if its working and if the fuel system is letting air in.

I'm wondering, did anyone of you who have this plane use this? Did you modify the RX board or where the bubble trap is mounted so you could inspect it for air in it after a flight?

Bob



Old 06-13-2021, 06:31 AM
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This is the "bowl of spaghetti" under the receiver mounting plate - not unexpected, but also not what I'm willing to live with.

One of the things that I think will cause the most frustration is the fact that the servo wires are really short. I'm hoping that I can get them all connected without having to extend them...


Old 06-13-2021, 06:53 AM
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OK, so after some examination and thinking, here's what I don't like and the plans to fix it:

- the "bubble trap" is of unknown (to me anyway) effectiveness and is buried under the receiver plate so it can't be seen.
solution: use a real UAT mounted vertically at the back of the space next to the fuel tanks with a clearance opening in the receiver plate so that it can sit on the bottom of the fuselage.

- the gear and brake controllers are seperate and several users have reported problems with the gear not fully retracting during flight. This is caused not primarily because the actuation voltage is too low, but because the cutoff current is too low - and can't be adjusted with the current retract controller. Also, there are 11 total gear doors, but it turns out that there are really only 3 servos for the gear doors - one each for the mains and nose gear.
solution: replace the supplied gear controller with a Xicoy LCG13 gear controller. This gear controller allows the cutoff current for each gear to be adjusted seperately as well as the position and timing for the gear doors for the "gear down," "gear moving," and "gear up" positions. In addition to fixing the gear not retracted problem, it will allow the nose and main landing gear doors to be set to close with the gear down - as is the operation on the full-scale T-45.

- the light controller simply powers all of the lights all of the time - the red beacons don't pulse and the white lights don't strobe. Also, the landing light on the gear stays on even when the gear is retracts - which at a minimum, drains the light battery more quickly.
solution: I'll use one of my own light controllers to blink the beacons, strobe the strobes, and turn off the landing light when the gear is retracted...

Parts are on order...

Bob
Old 06-13-2021, 09:52 AM
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Man...overall this thing as stock seems like quite an underdeveloped mess? Kudos to those consumers who are taking on what should have been the manufacturer’s tasks of design, engineering, development, and construction!


Last edited by highhorse; 06-13-2021 at 09:56 AM.
Old 06-13-2021, 10:09 AM
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Originally Posted by highhorse View Post
Man...overall this thing as stock seems like quite an underdeveloped mess? Kudos to those consumers who are taking on what should have been the manufacturer’s tasks of design, engineering, development, and construction!
I have two comments to that...

First, I think that, except for the gear problem, this thing could be assembled stock and be fine - its just not what I want to have - which is also the reason I'm painting mine.

Second, we just finished assembling a JMB Jets "PNP" T-7A - which cost a lot more, and we had to do all of this, and more. I've also talked to a number of people who have done "PNP" BVM jets and they have had to modify them too to make them satisfactory to their standards. "Plug-and-play" is in the eye of the purchaser.

In this case, knowing what I know now, if the jet would have been offered "without electronics" - meaning no gear, brake, and light controllers, I would have taken that option. However, based on the typical price of electronics from China, I doubt that would have saved $100 in the cost of the jet, probably less.

Bob

ps - actually third comment, everyone who has one comments that it flies well and at the price at which its offered, I think its a good deal...

Last edited by rhklenke; 06-13-2021 at 10:13 AM.
Old 06-13-2021, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by rhklenke View Post
I have two comments to that...

First, I think that, except for the gear problem, this thing could be assembled stock and be fine - its just not what I want to have - which is also the reason I'm painting mine.

Second, we just finished assembling a JMB Jets "PNP" T-7A - which cost a lot more, and we had to do all of this, and more. I've also talked to a number of people who have done "PNP" BVM jets and they have had to modify them too to make them satisfactory to their standards. "Plug-and-play" is in the eye of the purchaser.

In this case, knowing what I know now, if the jet would have been offered "without electronics" - meaning no gear, brake, and light controllers, I would have taken that option. However, based on the typical price of electronics from China, I doubt that would have saved $100 in the cost of the jet, probably less.

Bob

ps - actually third comment, everyone who has one comments that it flies well and at the price at which its offered, I think its a good deal...
So, a few counter-counter points if I may...not intended as a poke in any individual’s eye, just a furthering of the discussion:

1) Weak gear support broke on a first flight
2) Gear that won’t retract (how was this not clearly known to the mfr before release?)
3) Not-visible UAT (critical preflight item)
4) Sloppy control linkage (perhaps usable but at least questionable)

This isn’t a race for the bottom, two wrongs don’t make a right, folks jumping off of a bridge doesn’t mean that others should follow suit etc...So...The fact that some other mfr’s have something as bad and/or worse and/or more expensive neither changes the basic premise that of the above are clear signs of lack of development/testing before being released to consumers who then find themselves having paid hard earned $ for the privilege of doing the manufacturer’s work. Nor does it somehow excuse the foisting of known defects upon consumers.

Being fun to fly once the consumer works out inherent defects? Check. Great. But one should be clearly informed and forewarned when buying any product and that is the clear value of this thread IMO. Buy this model with the understanding that it’s a Harbor Freight jet that looks good in the color advertising but doesn’t live up to the job in reality and needs work.

Lastly, I respectfully disagree that “Plug and Play” is in the eye of the purchaser. By definition, the play part should..play. Right? Using an electronics or software analogy here, PNP doesn’t mean plug then re-solder connections or re-write code to achieve the basic intended functions. While some of the above squawks could admittedly be subjective, the play part w/r/t the landing gear structure and retract function isn’t working here as stock. This may be a simple case of semantics though as the quoted post did clearly indicate that this is PNP with the exception of the gear.

To each his own obviously because that’s what a free market is all about, but I’d offer that this jet is “Plug, Work On It, Play”, and because it’s not advertised as such I define that as a mess. All the more so because I can’t imagine the mfr not knowing of certain issues before shipping.

None of my opining should be construed as detracting from the OP’s and others’ efforts, volunteering their time to educate and inform. That’s both laudable and invaluable.

Last edited by highhorse; 06-13-2021 at 12:33 PM.
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Old 06-13-2021, 01:18 PM
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I don't disagree that "Plug-and-Play" should mean that, and in some cases, it does, but if you've spend any time at all working with Microsoft's "Plug-and-play" Windows software, you'll know that its not only model manufacturers that sometimes fall short. Apple stuff is better, but I've seen it too fall short...

Horizon Hobby makes some foamies that are pretty much "plug-and-play", but I have yet to see a jet model that meets that standard...

I would categorize this jet as "a typical ARF," not "an underdeveloped mess."

Bob

Last edited by rhklenke; 06-13-2021 at 01:21 PM.
Old Yesterday, 03:08 AM
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I had one of the T7s. It flew like ****. Only had about 5 flights before I damaged it so badly I trashed it.
Old Today, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by rhklenke View Post
I don't disagree that "Plug-and-Play" should mean that, and in some cases, it does, but if you've spend any time at all working with Microsoft's "Plug-and-play" Windows software, you'll know that its not only model manufacturers that sometimes fall short. Apple stuff is better, but I've seen it too fall short...

Horizon Hobby makes some foamies that are pretty much "plug-and-play", but I have yet to see a jet model that meets that standard...

I would categorize this jet as "a typical ARF," not "an underdeveloped mess."

Bob
At this point, I am leaning toward an underdeveloped mess myself.
My main gear door servos stopped working all together, and it's going to be a giant PITA to get them changed once the gear retract problem is solved.
Took the doors off like Mike told me to do and they still don't retract all the way.
So for now it's going to be a hangar queen until I decide what to do with it.
I was trying to stay positive about it, but now I'm just disappointed.

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