Originally Posted by sbonder
I am getting back to building R/C. I want to re-start with a BalsaUSA Spad. I know Nitro well, but want to switch to electric. Any big issues in using electric instead of nitro OTHER than the modifications to accommodate the different dimensions of motor, speed controller and batteries?. I can handle woodworking, but don't want to be caught with my pants down about some other issue that did not occur to me. Thanks in advance.
Start planning early, before you start to build!
Biggest one single issue - you guessed! You are now about to mount a smaller, more compact motor where the oilburner went. Your 'refueling' needs also must be addressed. If you are planning on using a LiPo battery, you want to be able to easily remove it frm the model for recharging - don't even contemplate an in-place charge, as these batteries have been known to pull off a close impression of an explosion into catching fire.
You don't want to be standing there in pits or your house watching your hard work go up in flames, I take it
Weight reduction - some like it, some don't bother. Note the now almost complete abscense of vibration. Here's a chance to look at the structure from one end to the other. It's hard to make a WW1 biplane nose heavy, but you can now look at a really light replacement tail structure - thinner laminated outline, lighter structure inside them, closed loop controls vice hefty pushrods.
Weight reduction may be getting unfashionable as our e-power gets higher and easier, but its still the cheapest performance upgrade and, applied properly, solves some of that tendency of this type of model to come out very tail heavy.
Have 'electrocuted' several glow models - it is possible to come out seriously under the typical glow powered flying weight with a model that can do fine as a sports flier.
Motor - we have a degree of flexibility that the glow lot don't. If you wanted to put in serious effort, a geared 'inrunner' motor vice the popular and easier going outrunner could turn that huge scale diameter prop that benefits a model like you are looking at.
As always, research lots, only buy when confident over purchase.
Have you considered whipping up a simpler sports model - Sig's new Four Star 20 springs to mind, or maybe convert a glow sports model you already have - to more easily pick up the handling clues of e-power?