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convince me: electric vs. gas??

Old 03-17-2006, 06:07 AM
  #76  
MRM1
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Dutch,

I skimmed the whole thread so far, hope you have not taken up some other hobby. (personally I love this debate)

Yes, I fly only electrics. Got into the hobby a year and a half ago thinking it would only be a back yard thing with 1 Hobbico Super Star EP .... Wrong ! 10 planes later.

Funny Glow Friend Story: after seeing my modified GP Super Sportster EP rip up the sky for servarl months, my glow friend for many years and lover of 1/4 scale bought one. He loves it: size, clean, and fun to fly even stock.

But one day a few weeks ago he flew it in after the ESC cut off the motor and forgot to turn off the switch. Went for his Glow plane, started it up, throttled up, and the Sportster jumped off the back of his truck and landed on his head. He was bent over tending to the glow plane. So those electrics are dangerous.

As to Lipos: saw some talking and debating about their safty and/or lack of. I have always like this thread (below). Espeically the ones that have had fires start for no reason at all.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=209187

Look at post #4. List has been updated thru Dec 2005.

I now own more Lipos than NiMH packs: Love them - but charge and keep them in a fire safe - little protection, but better than nothing.

Mike
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Old 03-17-2006, 11:56 AM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by Matt Kirsch View Post
Hunh? "Thick?" No way. Even my YS 20/20, which is only 60% methyl alcohol, isn't appreciably thicker at freezing than it is in mid-summer. It's still plenty thin enough for my engines to use it, and my starter has no problems turning over a typical .46 engine in any temperature.

Sounds more like your glow-flying buddies weren't prepared to fly. Their field boxes hadn't been touched since September, and their batteries were dead.

Betcha you'll see the same exact things happening on that first 70-degree day in April. Tell me the fuel is too thick then

When I was flying fuel I had the same thing all the time, people borrowing my starter and get upset when I ask them not to try to start their motor with the engine on compression.

They take a cold engine and try to suck the fuel into the dry engine with the starter, never check the glo starter to see if it is up to power.

Wind the starter motor up and jam it against the spinner, never turn the prop back against the compression before attempting to spin her over.

I have a 12 cell pack under my starter, think I'll pull them and put them in a plane.

I keep it charged, but it hasn't been to the field in 2-3 years.

Nay, I'll stick to the lipo's

x
I've heard of thick fuel, but that was way, way up north.
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Old 03-17-2006, 05:57 PM
  #78  
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I notice that a lot of e fliers are " on a crusade" to prove that electric is better to people who don't really give a ratz behind ..
Better for what?? It's better for me....that's what counts in the end..it's not economics, it's not being environmentally friendly, it has nothing to do with power, speed, safety, not having to use and buy fuel. It is however convenient, quick to get into the air when you want to fly,you can build and fly small ,medium sized, and larger models equally well, scale, aerobatic, 3D, pattern etc. etc.. Most if not all the others at the field could care less if you powered your model with Selenium Sulfide...but when they ask you what power system it is and you go into all the theory about it and why it's " better" their eyes glaze over and they become very dis interested really fast....my standard answer at the field when asked why I fly e planes is that it works best for me as it suits my flying style and leave it at that. After a dozen years or so as an exclusively electric modeler, I have come to the conclusion that this is really the only true answer to the question. My flying style My smallest model is a Yak flat foamy...my largest a multi motored 103" Catalina with retracts on tip floats and wheels...I also fly pretty much everything in between, my favourites being WW1 Fokkers, closely followed by everything else I own or have built....your mileage may differ.
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Old 03-17-2008, 07:23 AM
  #79  
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i flew the heck out of my super cub (& still do),but got a little bored with it... i was thinking of getting an electristar, but then read reviews about the plane saying its too underpowered... I wanna change from electric to gas because gas planes seem more fun, powerfull, real, & preform great aerobatics. (the tower trainer 40 is my target). i understand that electric is more cleaner & better for the enviornment ,but glow seems very cool.
(thats just me) Anyways, i would recomend a electric plane as a starter because it is very easy to fly (supercub) & then swithch to glow if you want.
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Old 03-17-2008, 02:59 PM
  #80  
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Originally Posted by RC10705 View Post
i flew the heck out of my super cub (& still do),but got a little bored with it... i was thinking of getting an electristar, but then read reviews about the plane saying its too underpowered... I wanna change from electric to gas because gas planes seem more fun, powerfull, real, & preform great aerobatics. (the tower trainer 40 is my target). i understand that electric is more cleaner & better for the enviornment ,but glow seems very cool.
(thats just me) Anyways, i would recomend a electric plane as a starter because it is very easy to fly (supercub) & then swithch to glow if you want.
I think you may be getting the Electristar mixed up with some other star as it is a 40 size trainer and almost identical to the tower trainer 40 except for being e-powered. All the tests I have read say that the performance is very close to glow with the Nmhi cells and better with the Lipos. I have 2 Electristars and the performance seems very good to me. We are running Lipos. Go with the glow engine if that makes you smile, I like them too but I wouldn't expect a great performance difference.
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Old 03-17-2008, 03:45 PM
  #81  
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Consider that a sport .40 will put out somewhere between .9 to 1 hp, while something in the .45-.46 range will do around 1.1, 1.2 hp. Choosing an electric in the 650 to 750 Watt range should give about the same performance as the .40, or something in the 850 - 900 Watt range should be roughly equivalent to the .45 - .46 if the props are kept equivalent.
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Old 03-17-2008, 06:19 PM
  #82  
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When you take a glow plane and convert it to electric use, you are paying the penalty for the extra weight built into the glow plane in terms of reinforcemnt that is needed to stand up to the vibration caused by the glow motor and fuel proofing that may be added to the fuselage. Electric motors are virtually vibration free, so purpose built electric planes can be built lighter.

EVERYTHING YOU WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT ELECTRIC FLIGHT
http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=31071

Take a look at the chapter on sizing electric power systems. If you use the watts per pound guideline provided, then you can better arrive at the power you need. For pilots who are used to sport glow planes I usually suggest a 100 watts per pound target using a brushless motor. If you like agressive aerobatics, long up lines and the like, then target 150 watts per pound or higher.
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Old 03-18-2008, 04:13 AM
  #83  
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Originally Posted by AEAJR View Post
Electric motors are virtually vibration free, so purpose built electric planes can be built lighter.
I would've thought so too, Ed, but when my Slow Stick nosed over on landing and then I went ahead and changed battery for 1 more flight you shoulda seen how that poor thing shook!! hehe didn't realize it had bent the motor shaft a bit.......boy those motor shafts were made of quite soft material.
OK, back on topic.

For pilots who are used to sport glow planes I usually suggest a 100 watts per pound target using a brushless motor. If you like agressive aerobatics, long up lines and the like, then target 150 watts per pound or higher.
Was the Electristar originally a fueler plane? Something about it just reminds me of the classic RC high wing from days ago......many moons before the electric became so popular.
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Old 03-18-2008, 04:44 AM
  #84  
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I fly both, both have major advantages over each other and it all depends upon application. My current build, the Model Airplane News P51 was originally designed for Fuel, I'm going it initially in electric due to it's scale, but when I find a .049 engine, I'll be alternating it with that.

Electrics are going to be your best choice for smaller planes because they have really taken over that arena, they don't even manufacturer the tiny fuel based engines any more for that reason. When you start to get into larger planes, fuel starts to make much more sense since the power to weight ratio to costs becomes an issue, that is where you are going in major debt trying to stay electric. Here is another side of this debate, I'm not sure anybody has mentioned, you can keep fueling up the plane all day long for non stop consectutive flights, with electric, you gotta have quite a few batteries on hand and keep charging them during flights in order to stay airborn. In a best case scenereo, if you have at least one fuel plane at the field with you, you can always fly it while you recharge your packs for your electric birds.
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Old 03-18-2008, 12:03 PM
  #85  
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Originally Posted by Wrench66 View Post
Was the Electristar originally a fueler plane? Something about it just reminds me of the classic RC high wing from days ago......many moons before the electric became so popular.
Hobbico states that it is based on a 40 sized trainer but totally redesigned for electric power.
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Old 03-22-2008, 09:00 PM
  #86  
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After reading this im going to buy the Electristar probobly.
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Old 03-22-2008, 10:37 PM
  #87  
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Did I miss the price comparison? It seems like a person could get into RC flying glow cheaper than electrics. My little LittleBirdz LoLo topped out at $225 and my E-Flite Mini Pulse XT cost me $275.

Frank
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Old 03-24-2008, 10:20 PM
  #88  
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Oh No Here We Go Again !!

BTW The only reason I fly the glow stuff I do is because it is cheaper.
Ive done the math and you know my wife has done the math so If she says it came out cheaper then it must be ehh.
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Old 03-24-2008, 11:30 PM
  #89  
Saucerguy2
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I picked up an Avistar RTF, 4 channel computer radio and rx, the fuel, starter, glow plug and chargers, batteries for the starter and rx, hand crank fuel pump, literally, everything I need to fly glo from the LHS, I know I got a deal, total costs, $300.00. Can we say score!!!!
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Old 01-18-2009, 04:57 PM
  #90  
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Default If I have to explain...

A most informative thread, especially for a TOTAL newbie.
That would be me.

But having visited a local heli-field, where I got bit by the bug, this topic seemed to be an almost constant thread there, as well.

Please pardon my non-insider's view.

I am reminded of the old Bikers proverb: "Harley...If I have to explain, you wouldn't understand."

The comparison seems apt.

I don't like smoke. I don't like noise.
But when I think of the shed, without the smell of glow fuel....
it DOES become something less...maybe better...but definitely less.

Right now I'm sitting in front of my simulator.
Beautiful scenery...over a hundred aircraft
No smoke, no LiPo, no fuel or chargers.
No freakin' wind.
Crashes? Gone with the touch of a button.

Why go to the field at all?
Sad.

So...I know I'll go electric: Cost, hassle, and environmental concerns.

But I sure hope that not everybody does.
Without gassers...the sport would be ....."less".

Is it too early to discuss "hybrids"?
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Old 01-26-2009, 03:16 AM
  #91  
Scorpion
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Cool The answer is simple

Electric = Clean and quiet
Glow/gas = Messy and noisy
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Old 02-22-2009, 05:02 PM
  #92  
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I fly both, and I love both. I started out flying nitro planes, but got out of the hobby because of life (college, work, etc). I got back in it flying electrics, mostly because the closest flying field at the time was 30 min away. With the electrics I could go to the school yard 5 min away and fly.

However, I recently moved and there's an RC field 10 min away from me, I just couldn't say no to going back to nitro. There's just something about it that can't be replaced. The sound, the smell, even the mess all make it awesome. Plus, although electrics are getting cheaper, if you want to fly big(ger) planes, nitro/gas is still way more affordable. That being said, I still fly my electric a lot, I can still go to the school right across the street, which is nice when I don't want to lug everything out to the field

If you can, try both. Try going to your local club and arrange to see if you can fly both, or at the very least see both in action. Maybe that will help. Having flown both, I highly recommend both.
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Old 02-22-2009, 06:13 PM
  #93  
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A little story about what happened to me this weekend.

I rocked up at the club with six batteries charged and two of my planes ready to go. This other guy was already there getting his nitro plane ready. The guy with the nitro plane went up first and came back down 30 seconds later with a dead stick. The engine was cutting out as the plane pitched up. Anyway, he spent the next hour and a half trying to sort it out.

While he was doing that I put six packs through two of my planes. We both went home about the same time.

The other thing is that my club has restrictions on flying IC planes - they can only be flown between certain times and only on certain days of the week. I can fly my electrics whenever I want.

So thats why I prefer electrics but if I wanted bigger models it would have to be IC
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Old 02-23-2009, 09:02 PM
  #94  
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Originally Posted by Buck Rogers View Post
A little story about what happened to me this weekend.

I rocked up at the club with six batteries charged and two of my planes ready to go. This other guy was already there getting his nitro plane ready. The guy with the nitro plane went up first and came back down 30 seconds later with a dead stick. The engine was cutting out as the plane pitched up. Anyway, he spent the next hour and a half trying to sort it out.

While he was doing that I put six packs through two of my planes. We both went home about the same time.

The other thing is that my club has restrictions on flying IC planes - they can only be flown between certain times and only on certain days of the week. I can fly my electrics whenever I want.

So thats why I prefer electrics but if I wanted bigger models it would have to be IC
No doubt they can be more fidgety. But I just want to add that a well broken in and tuned engine is just as reliable as any electric (I should add the disclaimer of a high quality engine).
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Old 02-23-2009, 09:37 PM
  #95  
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I have also had situations with electrics where I couldn't get a full length motor run. Had to do with a charger I had and hot weather. Charger would detect end point Voltage and shut off after the normal 20 - 25 minutes. I would install the battery and fly for maybe one or two minutes, then have to land effectively dead stick. This on packs that would give me normally 10 to 12 minutes.
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