Projeti Flight!

First flight was with the help of a new friend, Dan, who lives just down the street from me. I guess I’ve been having some bad days and it’s surfaced…. My car’s battery is dead. It’s a bit stressful that I can’t drive where and when I want. So I went to the field in my dad’s car. When I was getting ready to fly, I realized I had left the LiPoly at home. Bummer. Then I reached over to the transmitter and turned it off. But wait, shouldn’t I have turned it ON?! Grrr! I left it on for 2 days: dead transmitter battery! Dan was kind enough to give me a hand seating my NiMH pack and he lent me his transmitter, very nice.If flies fast and high! It likes to go up! It’s got –almost– full vertical performance… With a little speed, I can run straight up for like 75 feet, which is PLENTY. It’ll go up at a 45 degree angle until it’s out of sight. It goes about 90-100 MPH in level flight!

The entire first flight, I flew it as gently as I could, trying to get used to it and reminding myself that this wasn’t a crashproof plane! things got a little hairy with the sun getting in my eyes.

The second flight didn’t go so good. I launched it, it flew about 30 feet and then….  well… large pieces started flying off it! I cut the power and it fell to the ground. It seems that the spinner had gotten loose and the prop vibration tore at the plane. The motor tore out of it’s mount, a not-so-important piece of the tail was chopped off by the prop and a crack in the EPS formed almost all the way across the fuselage about 4 inches back from the nose. :-(

Break out the crazy glue and tape! After a little while, I was ready to go again but Dan had to go (taking his transmitter with him. Jason showed up as Dan was leaving. He wanted to see it fly. I remembered that I had a home-made quick-charger plug for the battery and plugged it in. Surprisingly, I got a near-full peak charge after only 10 minutes on 1.5 Amps (the transmitter batteries are 600Mah AA batteries). I stuck the NiMH’s on and was ready to go in 20 minutes with a 75% charge. I prepped her for flight and let her fly! She went along straight as an arrow out of my hand, I pulled back on the stick and she dove into the ground like a lawn dart! AACK!

I had forgotten that Dan fiddled with my receiver, reversing a wire! I should have done a better flight test! I recall a quote from Cliff Whitney, “When flying inverted, down is up and up is expensive”. The motor mount had held up but the foam holding the motor mount, about 1 inch into the plane gave way, tearing about as large a chunk as possible from the top rear of the plane. When the tail came loose, it chopped through part of rear of the wing, leaving a gash.

Well, after about 30 minutes of gluing and taping, she was ready to go back in the air. I had tried to collect all of the yellow foam from the crash site but I was missing a couple bits. The gash in the wing remains even still. I got her up and she was great. Smooth and fast flying. She rolls like… she rolls quick. I was getting ready to try inverted flight but as it unsteadily came out of the 1/2 flip and nosed toward the ground a bit more than expected, I recalled that I needed more experience with the plane before doing to much with it. Suffice to say, she flies very well.

I don’t think it’s appropriate for the task I was going to put it to at Burning Man. She’s too small, too fast, too unstable. I need something big that can cruise around showing itself off. The Zagi is just about big enough but not stable enough. I’ve got my work cut out for me here!

I’d have taken pictures of all this but my aunt borrowed my camera. I’ll have it back soon.

Here is the Kavan web site (the maker of Projeti)

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