Friday, September 10, 2010

Multiplex EasyStar Review: Part 3, New Battery, windy day

I charged up one of these:

It's an NiMH battery pack, bought from Vapextech via eBay (a nice price and speedy delivery, by the way). The pack has 8 cells of 2/3A size, 9.6V, 1500mAh, ~210g and most importantly, just the right size to fit in the cockpit. EasyStar's weight has now gone up to 600g, and CoG is where it says in the manual, or perhaps a mm forward of that. (Just as a reminder, the old NiMH pack was 7xAAA cells, 8.4V, 800mAh, ~100g. AUW was 525g and she needed ballast).

So, today, the wind was 15mph, gusting to 25mph. But I didn't let a little thing like that put me off! Went flying... half expecting to return with a broken plane...

Well, what a difference the new battery made. Despite the 75g weight increase, she has a frightening amout of power. I daren't push the throttle stick all the way open... Great fun in the wind, but I was careful to quit while ahead. There was a bit of nose bruising from a low level stall on the first launch - because the trim setting was wrong for the first flight with the new battery - but nothing serious. Thereafter, the wind itself was not the main problem because she could motor upwind comfortably enough. The real challenge was the gustiness, blowing her all about the place. I'll be back on a calmer day, but already, she's been a blast. None of my other power models would have handled this kind of weather as well as she did. Trying to control low level power fly-bys in the gusty wind was a larf and a harf :)

Who needs a brushless and LiPo? That would be too scary for me!

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