Posted by: scote621 | March 10, 2012

Freewing F-15 Upgraded

I was lucky enough to stumble across the exact plane I had been wanting to buy online at CME hobbies a few weeks back.  I wanted to get the plug and play version at the time but shipping costs were higher than I wanted to spend.  I lucked out and Chris was selling it on consignment at his shop with hi-tech servos installed so I had to pick it up.  He warned me that it was slighty underpowered but was a nice flyer.  I couldn’t wait to fly it for the first time.  So first calm day during lunch I traveled to the soccer field close by I like to fly at and gave her a go.  Boy was Chris right, took at least 150 feet on the smooth asphalt to get enough speed up to leave terra firma.  She was prob topping out in the 35-40 mph an hour range and I had to keep her flying at 75% to 100% throttle, But I could tell this freewing 64mm F-15 had potential! So I did some research and came across donsrc everyone on the forums was raving about his wicked edf motors.  I ordered one, a 4800 KV motor.

This is when I found out that I had the freewing version with an EDO type fan and not the nitroplanes one with the airfield fan.  The motor needed a rotor plug that I didn’t order but was able to use some elbow grease and heat to get the one-off the stock motor shaft and then next step was simply shaving off some plastic tabs so the motor would fit the fan housing and mounting the impeller.  Now let me tell you this is my first EDF and I did not realize how important it is to BALANCE the unit.  I figured it was ok as is.

As soon as I got the chance I took her back to the soccer field and got to test her out with the new motor.  It sure was loud and you could tell it was vibrating more than it should but she flew with a lot more get up and go!  I had downloaded an iphone app that used doppler sound analysis and was getting a new speed of around 63mph.  Well I only got about 15 flights on the jet until the motor literally tore the impeller blade apart, I was lucky enough to kill the throttle and deadsticked her in from a couple hundred feet out.

Back to Donsrc to order a BALANCED unit.  Ordered that on Sunday night and he had it in the mail by Tuesday morning arrived on Thursday and just finished the installation 30 minutes ago.  Now let me tell you there is a difference in a well balanced unit.  Plane seems to have even more power and sounds much more pleasant to the ear.  I have come to realize that you can only go so cheap with EDF’s and if you want the performace its going to cost you.  At this point this will have to be my only EDF for the foreseeable future.  So I will have to go pretty easy on her and not perform any of my crazier usual stunts quite yet…


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