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E-Flite F-4 Phantom build

Old 10-24-2013, 01:39 AM
  #51  
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Looking forward to it XM. Do you have any recent pics?
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:47 AM
  #52  
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Not much, since it's pretty much together. Pretty much just cosmetic stuff to go. cockpit and gear doors. One interesting thing. I found the plane is a copy of an actual Sundowner plane that had a Mig kill, and I found a picture of the pilot the day of the kill, so I can recreate his helmet. But I didn't find any of his back seater. (REO?)
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:48 AM
  #53  
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Omg what happened to the font in my phone! ?
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:41 AM
  #54  
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The RIO designation is for Radar Intercept Officer. He's also a (NFO) Naval Flight Officer. The Air Force uses the term WSO for the same job. Weapons Systems Officer. Probably the most famous Phantom RIO was Bill Dricoll who satin the back seat of Duke Cunningham's F4J.
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:26 AM
  #55  
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Well, it has flown! And survived! With only a little abuse of the nlg retract. Finally brought it out to CVMRCC field, but found the access road clogged with debris and mud from recent rains. So went to SEFSD instead. Perhaps a good thing so I wouldn't have to deal with the wires. I still almost didn't fly her, but with a little friendly coaxing from some others, and a good once-over from a respected pilot, I got the courage to finally do it. I'm glad they talked me into it!

She took off at a much slower speed than I expected, and I can see where many people think she's underpowered with the stock system. But she's on rails when she finally gets on step with some good speed. I think there's way too much elevator input, I'll have to work on that. Per the instructions, I didn't try flaps at first when landing, but after 2 really fast go arounds, I used the half flap position. But she still went way down the runway and did some pretty hard bouncing before going into the weeds at the end of the runway. I figured I punched the gear through the wing, but it looks like I only bent the nose gear a little and loosened something a little in the nose retract mechanism, but it still works fine.

In a nostalgic touch, I also brought my Apprentice to the field for warm up and between flight nerve settling. So I had my first trainer plane, and my newest hotrod EDF there together! As an even bigger coincidence, the very talented pilot who was there when I first showed up at CVMRCC 6? years ago with the Apprentice and took her up for me and handed me the tx, showed up between Phantom flights! Unfortunately he couldn't stay for the 2nd one. (He had a Phantom and totalled it on his 4th flight. Hopefully mine will last longer!)

I planned on trying out the flaps for the second flight. I also moved the battery fwd as she seemed maybe a tad tail heavy, though I used the cg recommended on the RCG thread. Guess I should remove the lead from the tail. Hope I didn't glue it in too well... It turned out to be a very short flight, as she seemed in a good landing position on my first approach with full flaps, so I thought better to call it a day. I had to goose the throttle at the last moment and somehow prevented a kangaroo landing again, but it was still such a hot landing, she rolled a bit into the weeds again.

I think if I manage to not destroy her while we get to know each other, she's gonna be a real favorite! I still have to get the gear doors on and Maverick and Goose installed.

Edit: Oh, I did get video, but of course, soon after she lifts off, she's just a speck! And same until just before landing, although they are entertaining. I'll have to see about uploading to YouTube. Never did that before.

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Old 11-25-2013, 05:54 AM
  #56  
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Awesome XM. definitely a plane I could not handle. She jut looks to intimidating for me. Great job and hope to see the video even if it is just a speck. I like watching them take off and land
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:49 AM
  #57  
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Well, that was easier than I thought:

Maiden flight. Sorry, Chellie!


2nd flight
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:56 AM
  #58  
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Thanks, Bonez. That'll be the true feeling of satisfaction, when I can land it at a slow speed in the first third of the runway.
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Old 11-25-2013, 11:47 AM
  #59  
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Cool It flies Good job, move down to the right at the edge of the flying field when landing, that will give you more room to land so it does not roll into the Bushes, nice to see it in one piece Take care and have fun, Chellie
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:11 PM
  #60  
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Looks great! Nice maiden. Maybe look into LG brakes. or since she's Navy livery, a retractable tail hook ? Make an arresting cable. Naw.
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:54 PM
  #61  
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Thanks for the tips. That was me at the approach end of the runway! And I just need to learn to slow her down more. She did lift off at a surprisingly low airspeed. It's just me being too scared to slow it down more after all the stalling stories I've heard. Lol! I forgot to mention, I was shaking part way during that first flight! But not as much as my very first edf flight. I know they say every plane has an expiration date, but I at least want to get my money's worth before that date! The Phantom is down to around $500 per flight, or $200 per minute. I have a ways to go!
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:25 PM
  #62  
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First congrats! It is a demanding plane but certainly fun...

Originally Posted by xmech2k View Post
And I just need to learn to slow her down more.
Yep for sure - it does come with practice and comfort with the plane. But it will slow a good deal more than that.

Originally Posted by xmech2k View Post
She did lift off at a surprisingly low airspeed. It's just me being too scared to slow it down more after all the stalling stories I've heard. Lol!
Hard to tell from the vid - but I like a good deal of speed on liftoff. You actually scared me a bit as I like a bit more ground speed.

Originally Posted by xmech2k View Post
I forgot to mention, I was shaking part way during that first flight! But not as much as my very first edf flight. I know they say every plane has an expiration date, but I at least want to get my money's worth before that date! The Phantom is down to around $500 per flight, or $200 per minute. I have a ways to go!
LOL too funny and true!

Congrats again...Mike
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Old 12-09-2013, 08:18 PM
  #63  
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OK, So with the maiden out of the way, took some time to work with Maverick and Goose. I think I mentioned earlier, I found a couple of pics of the real Lt Garry Weigand (On the models canopy) but not his RIO, so I'm just doing the same scheme on both helmets. Just hand painted, so not the greatest, but hey, I'm not going for the Top Gun trophy.
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Old 12-10-2013, 01:50 AM
  #64  
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Well done XM. That took a very steady hand one that my coffee stricken, nicotine, shaky hands could never do
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Old 12-19-2013, 01:22 AM
  #65  
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Oh crap,

I just saw this one: http://www.bananahobby.com/8-ch-blit...f-jet-arf.html
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Old 12-19-2013, 04:01 AM
  #66  
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Dang! Looks nice! But being from BH, I would probably wait and watch the forums, letting others be the guinea pigs and wring her out first.
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Old 11-10-2014, 12:57 AM
  #67  
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Has it been almost a year already?!? I finally grew a pair and got her back out today. I had already removed the fairly big chunk of lead from the tail, and using a 'CG Machine' instead of my fingers, I set the CG. I must have been tail heavy on those first flights, as it came out good with the battery in the same place, but now without the lead... Anyway, 2 good flights, but with some quirks. At takeoff, she rolled to the right even though I'm holding in left aileron.Maybe I'm taking off too slow, but I'll program more aileron into her. I practiced some approaches and touch and goes. I still have to practice those more! But at least I'm doing it now! Down to $250 per flight now.

A friend kinda videoed it, but I told him he didn't have to focus on seeing the plane, as I was more interested in the sound, so I could later check the speed with the RC Speedo app at home. The fastest it gave me on any pass was 68.8 mph. Hmmm, perhaps Chellie's F-5 had a fighting chance after all! But I think I'll get it better when I get the hang of her. The winds sure bumped her around a lot. We just need to get to know each other.
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Old 11-10-2014, 02:48 AM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by xmech2k View Post
Has it been almost a year already?!? I finally grew a pair and got her back out today. I had already removed the fairly big chunk of lead from the tail, and using a 'CG Machine' instead of my fingers, I set the CG. I must have been tail heavy on those first flights, as it came out good with the battery in the same place, but now without the lead... Anyway, 2 good flights, but with some quirks. At takeoff, she rolled to the right even though I'm holding in left aileron.Maybe I'm taking off too slow, but I'll program more aileron into her. I practiced some approaches and touch and goes. I still have to practice those more! But at least I'm doing it now! Down to $250 per flight now.

A friend kinda videoed it, but I told him he didn't have to focus on seeing the plane, as I was more interested in the sound, so I could later check the speed with the RC Speedo app at home. The fastest it gave me on any pass was 68.8 mph. Hmmm, perhaps Chellie's F-5 had a fighting chance after all! But I think I'll get it better when I get the hang of her. The winds sure bumped her around a lot. We just need to get to know each other.
“Why do people say "grow some balls"? Balls are weak and sensitive. If you wanna be tough, grow a Vag. Those things can take a pounding.”
Betty White

Getting My F-20 Completed, Yea, Its been about a year so far
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:48 AM
  #69  
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Glad you got her up and flying... No big issues is always good. Good training for that turbine! I am going to do a speedy prop plane or two before an EDF.

Great quote from Betty BTW.....
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Old 11-10-2014, 04:52 AM
  #70  
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Chellie, LOL Betty White's quote. Ya got me there! I could go off on a tangent now, but I think the mods would rather keep this at most PG!

Hi Jim! Shhh! You wanna get me kicked off of here?!? This is the best RC forum, I don't want to get the boot.
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Old 11-10-2014, 06:40 AM
  #71  
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Doh! Lol!
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Old 11-15-2014, 10:32 PM
  #72  
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So stoked! just got back from 2 more flights. ($166.67 per flight...) After last week I did some tx program tweaking, added elevator expo, more throw and a little more expo on the ailerons. I also let her get more speed before lifting off, as last week she started rolling right at takeoff even though I was putting in left aileron, which I think was just me trying to fly her too slow. Gotta get her 'up on step', and really fly her like a jet.

1st flight was OK, a bouncy landing, but no damage other than bending the retracts steering pin again. (Have to find a replacement before it snaps.) 2nd flight was excellent, with a great landing! This one is not for the faint of heart! Keeps you on your toes, but I love it. It really is the lead sled. Not so much power to weight ratio as my souped up foamies, and definitely not as forgiving. I don't think she's a 100 mph bird, but maybe 80-ish. No one to film for me today. My son volunteered to go with me tomorrow, so maybe I can get a good speed check. Now I need to buy more batteries!

And now I'm sorry, but I've got to do this:

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Old 09-21-2015, 07:39 PM
  #73  
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After 10 months, I thought I'd revisit this old thread. Thanks to the RC Flight Log app, I've been documenting my flights for perhaps a year. The Phantom is now up to 38 flights and around 2 hours and 10 minutes flight time. (Pretty neat app!) So let's see: $1000 divided by 38 flights.... I'm now down to $26.32 per flight! Not bad!

If you recall I had issues with it wanting to lift off too soon. I was having to hold full down elevator during take-off rolls to prevent it. Finally someone suggested to adjust the landing gear to be more nose down on the ground. I lowered the nose a bit, and amazing! I must have hit the sweet spot. Now it's a thing of beauty!

I originally installed a Spektrum TM1000 telemetry module to relay battery and rx voltage to the tx. I had the tx actually calling out battery pack voltage every 30 seconds, and set up to give a warning if rx voltage drops below optimum. This is not a plane I'd want to try a deadstick landing with! I finally admitted to myself that due to voltage sag, that voltage callout was pretty worthless. (I've heard Spektrum is coming out with a battery capacity sensor for telemetry, if they haven't already.) I was about to just about to pull the TM1000 from the F-4, but a flying buddy of mine, carrizojim, added a GPS sensor on one of his planes and I saw all the neat things you can do with it, so I added one. Saturday I flew with it the first time. Unfortunately, the SD card I have isn't compatable with my tx. The tx screen just stays blank when turned on with the SD card installed. But I still was able to get ground speed callouts every 15 seconds, and the max speed and altitude stayed in my tx. I wasn't able to time my high speed passes to the callouts exactly, but despite me thinking she was slower, as I noted in my previous post, I was getting several 110+ mph callouts in level flight, and as you can see in the pic of the tx screen below, a max of 157.8 mph! Maybe a glitch? Maybe at the bottom of a dive with a tailwind? Can't wait to get the SD card sorted out and see the actual graphs and flight path.

So below is a pic of the tx screen with the max speed & altitude of the flight, and a recent one of the F-4 alongside the FN-RC F-104 I recently picked up from MotionRC. It's definitely not as fast as the Phantom, but has a real cool-factor! Even with that tiny wing, it's much easier to fly and especially land, compared to the Phantom. There's also a video another flying bud got. She disappears in the distance again, but the close passes are pretty cool.

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