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No support at all from Horizon Hobby

Old 05-30-2015, 04:37 PM
  #1  
woodmangler
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Default No support at all from Horizon Hobby

The Apprentice tail flutter saga ended with the elevator self destructing in the air.

This was my 5th call to Horizon Hobby tech support, and they had no record of any of the calls... really??

This call accomplished nothing. All the guy said was "it is out of warranty so you have to send the plane in" ... at my expense.

Pieces of plane... not much left

I asked for a fuselage - wouldn't do it.

I asked how they could just cut me loose after I had called and followed the instructions of their reps to the letter... said no record of the calls.

I am done.

Thank you all very much for all your help. Bottom line is, this plane was a lemon and no support from Horizon Hobby at all.

Needless to say, I wont buy another of their products if they cost a penny.

I spent all my money on this... so I am out of the RC flying hobby for a very long time.

Y'all have fun.
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Old 05-30-2015, 04:54 PM
  #2  
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It happens. You were certainly enjoying the flying. You have some components already. Not hard to build on the skills and items you have already attained. Some companies are frustrating but there are very many others that offer good products.
There are a couple companies I refuse to deal with at this point but I still have a massive folder of bookmarks that I frequent. Don't let one bad experience ground you. Don't let one call center response either. You can alert a manager to the detailed, dated posts here on WF. Every company has a handful of bad employees. Horizon strives to maintain great customer relations.
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Old 05-30-2015, 05:08 PM
  #3  
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Sorry guy .....

But let's be honest if we all gave up because of poor Customer Service - many of today's household brand names would have failed years ago. There's always Monday morning stories of crap CS guys ...

I think general reports of HH though indicate a company that values its customers. With that in mind, why not ask to speak to supervisor ?

Nigel
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Old 05-30-2015, 05:14 PM
  #4  
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Originally Posted by woodmangler View Post
The Apprentice tail flutter saga ended with the elevator self destructing in the air.

This was my 5th call to Horizon Hobby tech support, and they had no record of any of the calls... really??

This call accomplished nothing. All the guy said was "it is out of warranty so you have to send the plane in" ... at my expense.

Pieces of plane... not much left

I asked for a fuselage - wouldn't do it.

I asked how they could just cut me loose after I had called and followed the instructions of their reps to the letter... said no record of the calls.

I am done.

Thank you all very much for all your help. Bottom line is, this plane was a lemon and no support from Horizon Hobby at all.

Needless to say, I wont buy another of their products if they cost a penny.

I spent all my money on this... so I am out of the RC flying hobby for a very long time.

Y'all have fun.

Love to here both sides of the story.........seldom are both sides ever completely forthright and transparent.

Sorry to hear the OP has become so frustrated with a product from a historically "top of the line" distributor, that has a very long history of success and customer satisfaction............SO much so that he's now walking away from the hobby all together..........makes one wonder just how dedicated and engaged the OP really was......or how high he set the bar of expectations...........it just may have been a case of setting oneself up for failure without due diligence and proper preparation from the get go......
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Old 05-30-2015, 05:56 PM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by pizzano View Post
Love to here both sides of the story.........seldom are both sides ever completely forthright and transparent.

Sorry to hear the OP has become so frustrated with a product from a historically "top of the line" distributor, that has a very long history of success and customer satisfaction............SO much so that he's now walking away from the hobby all together..........makes one wonder just how dedicated and engaged the OP really was......or how high he set the bar of expectations...........it just may have been a case of setting oneself up for failure without due diligence and proper preparation from the get go......
Funny that you seemed to have chosen to side with Horizon Hobby. How long have you worked for them?

Due diligence?... engaged and dedicated?

Did you read any of the posts?... if that isn't engaged I don't know what is.

How high did I set the bar of expectations? I followed HH instructions through several calls. Bottom line is they did nothing at all on that last call, and how convenient that all of those phone calls magically disappeared, but all my contact information they had on file was correct. Very convenient indeed. Anything above "nothing at all" would have been great with me. My bar is set at "do something, anything to help" - they failed miserably at that.

You have every right to your opinion, however you came about forming it.
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Old 05-30-2015, 05:59 PM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by birdDog View Post
It happens. You were certainly enjoying the flying. You have some components already. Not hard to build on the skills and items you have already attained. Some companies are frustrating but there are very many others that offer good products.
There are a couple companies I refuse to deal with at this point but I still have a massive folder of bookmarks that I frequent. Don't let one bad experience ground you. Don't let one call center response either. You can alert a manager to the detailed, dated posts here on WF. Every company has a handful of bad employees. Horizon strives to maintain great customer relations.
I did not think of asking for a manager. Since the previous phone calls were not recorded for whatever reason, it never occurred to me.

I informed the CS rep that there was a lot of posts about this on Wattflyer - he said "never heard of them" and went merrily along with his mantra of "you have to send the plane in"
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Old 05-30-2015, 06:04 PM
  #7  
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Default I posted out of frustration...

I just ordered a fuselage, wing, tail, firewall, motor mount and cowl.

I'll fix it. I like flying.

Thanks for listening.
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Old 05-30-2015, 07:25 PM
  #8  
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I'm going to suggest a different receiver, AS3X if you like but you can actually use any DSM2 DSMX receiver.
http://hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store...dProduct=52349

http://www.headsuphobby.com/Power-Up...iver-G-656.htm

If nothing else, at least for test purposes. You know you're going to want another in the future anyways!

Last edited by birdDog; 05-31-2015 at 12:58 AM.
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Old 05-30-2015, 09:24 PM
  #9  
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i just returned from the field and 2 new members were both flying the apprentices in high winds around 15+. i must say the apprentices handled it great for beginners to learn on.

i really like nigels idea to ask for the supervisor. if they realize your addicted to rc they will be very happy to feed your addiction.

don't be discouraged by a few bad vendors who don't respond to emails or phone calls. i just posted a warning regarding ak models lack of contact. this doesn't mean the guy can't be on vacation and he's a one man operation. some online suppliers have other jobs......but they should still answer emails or the phone if they take your money. i hope you get back up and flying soon.
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Old 05-30-2015, 11:19 PM
  #10  
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Some years back we bought a premium $4000+ refrigerator that failed continuously for the next 8 years. We purchased two auxiliary fridges for backup use, and to save hundreds of dollars worth of food when the main unit failed. We also had to buy service warranties every year, since each repair cost hundreds of dollars. We couldn't get any satisfaction from the nationally-known vendor. So, I have to laugh at your understandable frustration and dismay. It's only an expensive toy after all. You can easily spend as much on a big dinner out.

That said, I empathize. Horizon can be a mixed bag, as most companies are these days. This has also become a hobby that is product-marketed like cars or appliances; Something breaks or fails and you just ask for a replacement.

In my experience, that's a lousy basis for a rather complex avocation. I have never built or flown a model that didn't require some bit of knowledge or experience to produce success. Regardless of scale, aviation requires more than just assembly instructions. There are just too many factors that can cause problems that another part won't solve. Whether you built from scratch or bought it ready-made, there will almost always be something that requires your intervention to solve.

Aviation, regardless of scale, is a complicated pursuit. Always was. Probably always will be. I imagine there are many like you, who have been conditioned to accept the shake-the-box-and-fly-it attitude, for marketing purposes.

It's time to shake off your disappointment and get back on the horse. All of us experience the kind of loss you did, especially early on. Imagine the devastation if you had spent 6 laborious months building that trainer from a pile of sticks. Take some lessons from this. Maybe try another approach. Educate yourself and begin to enjoy the hobby. In spite of what the marketers say. This hobby doesn't come easily.
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Old 05-31-2015, 12:25 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by woodmangler View Post
I just ordered a fuselage, wing, tail, firewall, motor mount and cowl.

I'll fix it. I like flying.

Thanks for listening.
No disrespect woodmangler but you were repeatedly advised to test another receiver to isolate the fault and you did not.
Now its going to cost you an awful lot more to get her fixed and I still don't see a receiver on your shopping list
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:43 AM
  #12  
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One of the reasons I video nearly all my flights - is for diagnostic purposes.

Too many times we think we know why a model crashes. But too often I find the video indicates something else.

My infamous biplane vertical into the tarmac .... on the video I say that I must have gone wrong way with elevator when inverted. In fact viewing video - shows clearly that elevator did not respond and servo was found to be unreliable. Without that video I probably would have rebuilt and tried her again with it still on board.

Downwind turns .... too slow in turns ..... flat wing plate stalls ..... videos show them remarkably well.

Nigel
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:48 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Swiss Flyer View Post
No disrespect woodmangler but you were repeatedly advised to test another receiver to isolate the fault and you did not.
Now its going to cost you an awful lot more to get her fixed and I still don't see a receiver on your shopping list
Yep. I simply do not have another receiver, have never changed out a receiver, and yes it was suggested here to change out the receiver - but I was also getting many other suggestions both in the forum and by message and also from HH.

Was I confused about what to try next? You bet.

The HH techs said change out the servo... so hopefully you will understand why I didn't run out and buy a receiver.
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:57 AM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by birdDog View Post
I'm going to suggest a different receiver, AS3X if you like but you can actually use any DSM2 DSMX receiver.
http://hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store...dProduct=52349

http://www.headsuphobby.com/Power-Up...iver-G-656.htm

If nothing else, at least for test purposes. You know you're going to want another in the future anyways!
Wow... I read the info on that receiver from Hobby King... I think I hurt my brain!

I don't know most of what they are talking about. The reviews are not good either - people talking about totally their plane because their new receiver dropped the signal etc...

Sure makes me nervous... mostly because I have no clue about any of this.
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Old 05-31-2015, 01:20 PM
  #15  
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The number of people using Orange and Lemon Spektrum compatible Rx's I think outweighs the negatives you may have read.

I'm no Spekie lover .... I prefer one system, one brand, one way : FrSky - but that's another story. But I say this - to indicate I have no reason to support Spekie gear .... but what I read and see are many compatibless like Orange and Lemon brands doing the job day in day out at far less cost than Spek's own.

Nigel
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Old 05-31-2015, 03:26 PM
  #16  
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The majority of those "signal loss" complaints could have been forseen with a simple range check or tapping on the receiver/jiggling connections. Basically, following instructions. A lot of range issues can be fixed by correcting antenna location/orientation, following instructions. There is a reason they say to locate antenna and or satellites at 90 degree angles, yet I still see some "installed" with the antenna close to parallel. I have zero issues <knocks of wood> with Spektrum, Orange or Lemon (still testing) receivers.
Keeping it simple, just a plan receiver with no gyros or stabilization not only eliminates possible technical problems but also improves the pilots skills.

Hell, I have seen "pilots" with planes covered in duct tape blame the radio system for signal problems!

I have no gyros but am considering one just for rudder on a Stearman just for take-offs. That sucker is a handful on the ground.
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:08 PM
  #17  
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Woodmangler, if (as I've picked up in your other thread) you're successfully flying that umx Pitts, I think you've graduated from the training wheels and shouldn't need as3x for your Apprentice. You can get a much cheaper rx that way, whatever brand you choose to get. And a much less complicated one as well. These new-fangled gyros can make flying easier for beginners, but to actually set them up to work properly is not for beginners, if they're not already setup properly from the factory.
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:14 PM
  #18  
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Now I am going to sound rude ... but believe me it is not my intent.

Here we have a recognised model and reports of its poor flight performance. The report is unusual for such model which is well known for being a trainer and sturdy one at that.

On another thread we have same pilot trying to bind a Pitts to a radio but not reading manual ... trying to break open unnecessarily the model. Simple acts like cell checking with Multi-meter needed to be explained by another.

Believe me - I am not trying to be rude ....

Woodmangler - PLEASE read the manuals ... get sorted as to right and wrong ways. We want to help you in every possible way to get to fly anything and everything with ease ... but so far what I have read in these and other threads is a tale of woe and failure to read up basics. I don't say the AS3X or your Apprentice is perfect and that it was not at fault ... but how can we be sure if another thread you don't even understand how to bind radio to the Pitts ? We need to know that you have done all as per manual ... as per normal standard procedure etc. before we can help sort out the problems ... This would also apply to any Vendor who is approached by you to sort out problems ... if they detect any waivering from proper practice - that's a no-show deal.

I know I sound awful in this post - but truly - I am not .... I'm trying to get to the root and get you on right path ...

Nigel
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:30 PM
  #19  
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
Now I am going to sound rude ... but believe me it is not my intent.

Here we have a recognised model and reports of its poor flight performance. The report is unusual for such model which is well known for being a trainer and sturdy one at that.

On another thread we have same pilot trying to bind a Pitts to a radio but not reading manual ... trying to break open unnecessarily the model. Simple acts like cell checking with Multi-meter needed to be explained by another.

Believe me - I am not trying to be rude ....

Woodmangler - PLEASE read the manuals ... get sorted as to right and wrong ways. We want to help you in every possible way to get to fly anything and everything with ease ... but so far what I have read in these and other threads is a tale of woe and failure to read up basics. I don't say the AS3X or your Apprentice is perfect and that it was not at fault ... but how can we be sure if another thread you don't even understand how to bind radio to the Pitts ? We need to know that you have done all as per manual ... as per normal standard procedure etc. before we can help sort out the problems ... This would also apply to any Vendor who is approached by you to sort out problems ... if they detect any waivering from proper practice - that's a no-show deal.

I know I sound awful in this post - but truly - I am not .... I'm trying to get to the root and get you on right path ...

Nigel
I like the interaction between actual human beings with experience.

I guess you could close the forum down and just put up a banner that says "read the manual"

Just wouldn't be the same now would it.

Sorry if my posts bothered you.
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Old 05-31-2015, 06:00 PM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by woodmangler View Post
I like the interaction between actual human beings with experience.
So do I especially when productive. I particularly enjoy when someone gains from what little I can give.

I guess you could close the forum down and just put up a banner that says "read the manual"
In many ways that is fair comment for many items in life ... how many times has Husband asked Wife if she read the manual ? When she complains new washing machine doesn't do what she wants !

So - DID YOU read the manuals of the Apprentice or Pitts ? Its fair game on to question ...

Just wouldn't be the same now would it.

Sorry if my posts bothered you.
Sorry you feel that way ... but we all tried to help in any way possible ... and we still want to - including silly ol'me.
But I felt I needed to mention after reading the Pitts thread ..... it appears to have relevance.

Sorry again that you feel offended ... not my intention.

Nigel
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Old 05-31-2015, 06:12 PM
  #21  
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Another view: you are willing to try out this hobby without RTFM. All you are really risking is your money. If you take that risk you should be ready to just suck it up if it doesn't pan out. Yes, it's possible to fly a model with little knowledge or experience. But an “experience" is all you're likely to get out of it. You'll have to decide the value of that.

Maybe you would be happier if you just spent the money on a quality flight simulator. They are really quite realistic, and you can crash as much as you like and never have to learn anything. Not insulting you here. Just being honest.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:10 PM
  #22  
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Default Yes, I read the manuals...

Originally Posted by maxflyer View Post
Another view: you are willing to try out this hobby without RTFM. All you are really risking is your money. If you take that risk you should be ready to just suck it up if it doesn't pan out. Yes, it's possible to fly a model with little knowledge or experience. But an “experience" is all you're likely to get out of it. You'll have to decide the value of that.

Maybe you would be happier if you just spent the money on a quality flight simulator. They are really quite realistic, and you can crash as much as you like and never have to learn anything. Not insulting you here. Just being honest.
The only thing I saw in the DX5e manual about binding is to use the binding plug... so my question about opening up the Pitts... I tried binding the Pitts to the DX5e about a bazillion times..
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:45 PM
  #23  
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Sometimes you need to get a good amount of distance between TX and RX for a bind. Try from about 8-10 feet away.
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:44 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by maxflyer View Post
Another view: you are willing to try out this hobby without RTFM. All you are really risking is your money. If you take that risk you should be ready to just suck it up if it doesn't pan out. Yes, it's possible to fly a model with little knowledge or experience. But an “experience" is all you're likely to get out of it. You'll have to decide the value of that.

Maybe you would be happier if you just spent the money on a quality flight simulator. They are really quite realistic, and you can crash as much as you like and never have to learn anything. Not insulting you here. Just being honest.
Trying to figure out why you think I need a flight simulator?

I am trying to learn this new lingo, new-to-me electronics etc, but I can fly. I actually have no problem at all flying. I do all the tricks, upside down flying, inside and outside loops and barrel rolls and all of that.

I flew the Champ for over a year before I felt competent enough to move up to a better plane. That little plane didn't touch the ground! ... hand launch, and fly it back to me and catch it.. over and over.

I just don't know ANY advanced stuff at all. I bought the Champ, put the battery in and flew.. and crashed, and learned... over and over. Once I could fly the Champ in any kind of wind and inside the service bay at work and was totally comfortable, that is when I bought the Apprentice.

The tree ate my Apprentice once, but that is because I am old, poor eyesight, and it was nearly dark. No problem with the actual flying part though
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:45 PM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by birdDog View Post
Sometimes you need to get a good amount of distance between TX and RX for a bind. Try from about 8-10 feet away.
I've got goth the Spekie DX8 and DX9 transmitters. And BOTH of them must be separated from the receiver by at least 10 feet during binding. If not they will not bind.

And, no I couldn't find this in the printed manual.
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