Maiden flight of the AvantiHawk!

This afternoon Georg and I maidened my new AvantiHawk on our club’s airfield. I started using the bungee (check out the video), and you will see in the bungee that it was a bit too agressive on the elevator (and on the ailerons). First flight went quite well though, stayed up in the air for 45 minutes using only a few minutes of motor. After adjusting the settings the second flight went much better. It seems that we got the center of gravity correct, and I’m not too far off with the other settings. Today’s conditions were not very favourable, and of course the real testing will come when I fly this baby on one of our favourite slopes, but what I saw today impressed me. This is one great little glider…

details: 4.12m wingspan, fuselage, rudder and elevator scratch built (Fuselage built by Richie), wings from the Chocofly Avanti, kindly supplied by Dani from ChocoFly,  5.8kg flying weight, all servos ChocoMotion, except the elevator (MKS). Motor is a Dualsky/Leomotion outrunner with a Castle Light 100A ESC and 2x 3300 3S Lipos.

The AvantiHawk is ready for its maiden flight!

The final bits of work are always more than planned, but over the weekend I finally managed to get the AvantiHawk ready for its maiden flight. I’ve set the CoG at 100mm for now, which is how colleagues fly the Chocofly Avanti (my AvantiHawk uses Chocofly Avanti Wings). Flying weight is 5.8KG with 2×3300 3S Lipos and a small Scorpion backup power system. I’ve built it so that I can fly it with 2×3700 3S Lipos as well, as well as a heavier Life backup power system that we developed in our club. Now all I need is the right weather….. In the meanwhile my JS3 also came back from the paintshop and I got the fuselage for my 1:3 Diana2. The Diana2 has priority and I hope to finish it in the next few weeks, after that it’s back to the JS3 again. More on that later.

AvantiHawk is back from the paint shop

I just got the AvantiHawk (Duckhawk with Chocofly Avanti wings) back from the paint shop. Andi did a fantastic job, as always. Unfortunately I missed quite a few pinholes when preparing the fuselage for painting, but I hope to be able to correct this when polishing the fuselage.

Now I first need to wait a few days for the paint to harden out, then I can polish the fuselage and rudders, and finish the elevator as well as install the electronics in the fuselage.

AvantiHawk off to the paintshop

It’s been too long since I’ve been able to post an update, also due to the hours spent on the new EU legislation on unmanned aircraft, which has now finally been completed and where we managed to convinced the EU to make a range of changes to better accommodate the concerns of us aeromodellers. Add to that the amazing weather, which meant an early start of the flying season :-).

In between other tasks I’ve made much progress on my AvantiHawk (Chocofly Avanti Wings with scratch-built Duckhawk Fuselage). Fitting the wings to the fuselage was more work than expected. It’s the first time that I’ve had to adjust wings to a different fuselage, and I’ve lost count of the amount of times that I had to sand, apply primer of resin with micro-balloons, and sand again, to get a halfway decent result. On Saturday I finally gave it to my friend Andi who will paint the fuselage, Canopy frame, elevator and rudder. I’m keen to see the result.

In the meanwhile….AvantiHawk!

Although our JS3 build is progressing steadily, the long time in between allowing the epoxy resin to harden out for each of the current steps of the build leaves a bit of time to work on something else. I’ve been looking for a relatively light (around 5.5kgs, easy to hand start) scale 1:3.5 glider to use my favourite local slope. A couple of months ago one of my friends gave me a surplus fuselage of a 1:3.5 Duckhawk that he built a few years ago (see this amazing video of a very lucky “touch and go” of his DuckHawk!). I’ve always like this plane, with its very characteristic fuselage, rudder and elevator. As I don’t time to build another pair of wings now, the question was whether I could use commercially available wings. I was very impressed by the new 4m Chocofly Avanti, designed within our club, and liked the quality of the wings, built by RCRCM in China. Dani (Chocofly’s owner and a member of our club) was able to provide a pair of custom built/painted Avanti wings in less than a month. I’ve spent the past few weeks building the elevator and rudder and fitting the motor and canopy. Today Georg helped me fit the Avanti wings. I’m very proud with the result – in fact I think it looks even better than the original (which has very narrow wings). There is still quite a bit of work to do, but I’m very much looking forward to flying this one!