Great Planes Sportster EP
LJ gave me this kit for a Chanukah present. I wanted something electric for getting in a quick flight now and then. It started as an ARF (Almost-ready-to-fly) but I didn't like the color scheme - so I stripped it down to bare wood and re-covered it.
Here's what it looks like from the manufacturer, before I modified it. The pieces were completely covered in red when it arrived.
It took about two weekends to strip and re-cover it, plus the time to install all the gear - so instead of an ARF (Almost ready to fly) it's an NCR (Not close to ready.)
Today was the first flight. It's a nice-flying plane, and it's all electric, so there's no oil stains in the car, no wipe-down after the flight. Click on the pictures to see larger ones.
OK, so the stock power system was a little anemic. Flew nice off pavement for 6-7 minutes, but not really what I was looking for - so after a few trips, it was time to go to Al's Hobby Shop. I upgraded mine with an E-Flite 15 (Not the 25) and it's fantastic - Config is an
|APC 12x6 E,|
|4000mah 4-cell pack (TrueRC, only 10C rated, but plenty for this)|
|Castle 45A controller.|
It's still more power than this plane needs, but not ridiculously so. I keep
it set so it draws about 400W max, and it's still got fast unlimited vertical,
and I get TWO 10-minute flights per pack. And the setup weighs EXACTLY what the
old setup did - battery's 1/2 oz more, and the motor's a little lighter.
To mount it, I just used a triangle to identify a right angle to the existing mounts, marked it, and sawed them off. I made a new firewall and mounted it to the sawed-off stubs, and the thrust line was perfect - see pix.
(Note - later I swapped in some plastic stand-offs and screws from the hardware store - about an inch each.)
This is a great plane overall - I've built it in the 60 and 20 size, and flown a 40, and this little jewel is my favorite of all of them. And with its new power package, it can fly off our muddy grass field.
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