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-   -   3D plane suggestions - quality & capable (https://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=77825)

Mysterious 08-16-2016 09:47 PM

3D plane suggestions - quality & capable

So I'm doing some investigating for suggestions for 3-D planes for myself and a good friend of mine to buy and build over the winter for next spring.

Both of us are interested in getting 3-D planes that would be not only very capable of executing all a given manoeuvres one would want but also something that has a good build quality. We are not looking to completely scratch build, we are hoping to find an ARF that is somewhat put together as most of them are now, and then simply do whatever is necessary to get everything together that's already prebuilt coming in the box. At this point in time I wouldn't say expense is limiting factor. If the kit justifies the cost I think we both be OK with that. Size ... 46-60 inch wingspan.

As far as our expertise we both have both have flown planes before and are moderately skilled pilots I would say. I have a visionaire that I fly regularly and I used to have a cheap flat out foamy that I messed around with for 3-D before it met the ground after a battery ejection

We are looking for suggestions on planes we should consider as well as opinions based on first-hand experience putting together those planes and flying them if the given person has that experience. Sometimes internet reviews are not as honest at pointing out build times, product flaws, etc as real users are.

We've looked a little bit at the planes that are on extremeflightRC (edges, extras, yaks), twisted hobbies foamy's and at precision aerobatics AddictionX. We're looking for something that slow flies very well and is capable of all of the extreme 3-D maneuvers.

As far as foam versus balsa we are undecided. We obviously understand that balsa is less forgiving in the event of a mistake.

So if anyone has any suggestions about specific planes they know have been reported to be very good 3-D flyers, or have personal experience with them, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. As would any links to relevant reviews or videos that might help us better ascertain what we want to buy

Thank you in advance

pizzano 08-16-2016 11:20 PM

I have flown and helped assemble Hanger 9 Extra 330 and Inverza 33 models......both ARF. Quality is always outstanding with H9.......:


Have also flown and owned a couple of E-Flite foamy models that were very reliable.......:


TechOne foamies are a good choice for the newbie looking for durability and low costs......:


All of the above selections have been reviewed to death at RCG......a few good reviews even here at Wattflyer..........;)

birdDog 08-17-2016 12:49 AM

You mentioned a winter build season so here goes...you are already familiar with ExtremeFlight/3DHobbyshop but if you are looking for actual builds, here are a couple favorites. They Etana has a fully airfoiled tail but is limited to 45 degree throws throughout, the Edge will be limited to 45 degrees only on ailerons due to flat tail planes. Nice planes for 2200mAh 3S. They both fly like they are filled with helium.



For knocking around with full 3d capabilities in a resilient, inexpensive ARF this one cant be beat for intermediate pilots. I like a 900-1000kv motor 13x6 and a 3600mAh 3s in mine.


road king 97 08-17-2016 01:38 AM

Iam building this in winter ,the 48 inch size.Free plans and instruction pictures plus videos of it doing some nice 3-D in the thread .enjoy :D joe http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1771355

solentlife 08-17-2016 08:23 AM

One of the best 3D machines to get into the action, will fly in just about any conditions, is easily repaired, uses economic gear and will not break the bank ......

Hobby King Hummer.

I have Extreme Flight Extra, Precision Aerobatics Katana, Hyperion Yak55, Zlin Z50, Ultimate 3D.... etc, but the Hummer does it best.


JetPlaneFlyer 08-17-2016 10:25 AM

If you want a balsa and ply 3D ARF then you aren't going to get better than the Extreme Flight / 3DHS range. They also do motor/ESC and servo packages so providing that you have the budget for it you cant go wrong. In my experience the quality is very high, manuals are excellent and they build quickly and easily. They fly all round 3D excellently, great at high energy 3D and do to slow stuff well but aren't in the same super lightweight slow 3D class that the AddictionX.

Precision Aerobatics are a bit more hit or miss. The Addiction series is on it's own if you are looking for a super light slow flying 3D balsa plane. The problem with PA is quality can be a bit patchy, warped structures being quite common, supplied hardware (wheels, pushrods etc) is very poor quality and the build is quirky and at times frustrating. I found PA customer support poor too. But with patience you do get a unique 3D model.

At a lower price point the EPP Foam/ply hybrids are worth looking at. They are a good compromise between foam and wood construction and fly the slow stuff brilliantly, yet still do high energy 3D pretty well.

solentlife 08-17-2016 01:20 PM

Here you go - this is me just playing with a Hummer in blustery strong winds ...


Its a cheap model to put together ... a Turnigy 2836 1100kv motor, 30A ESC, 1300 25C 3S LiPo, 11x5.5 APC E prop and away you go ... have fun !!

Bang it into the ground ... pick it up and chuck it back in the air. If it breaks or splits - then CA or PU glue puts her back in the air.

You could go for the EPP / Ply range that Skyways sells via various shops including Hobby King. I have the 1400mm Edge 540 ... JetPlaneFlyer has the 1200mm version MXS ... they fly really well ... just make sure hinges are fitted really secure.

To be honest - there are budget ... moderate ... crazy priced models out there that 3D well. Its really a case of what you want to have cosmetically. I hated Profile models till I got the Hummer ... now I'm hooked on it.

Here's after a serious rebuild ...


And a feat I would never try with anything else :


And of course if you are really serious about it all ... maybe you can have a go like 'our' Uldis - in our club who literally ONLY flies 3D and with big models ... here he is just having a bit of fun with his SBACH 342 60cc Gasoline jobbie ...



JetPlaneFlyer 08-17-2016 01:30 PM

If we are doing videos... here is my Hobbyking MX2 EPP/Ply composite:


(If embedded video doesn't work just click the link)

solentlife 08-17-2016 01:33 PM

I have to admit that I am not a great lover of the EPP look of the models - but they do fly well.


PS - I will be glad when WF sorts out the video side of things ...

solentlife 08-17-2016 01:43 PM







This is mine ..



What I am illustrating is there are loads out there to choose from ... whether foam or composite or wood jobs. Obviously for 'cosmetic' appeal the wood jobs are good ... the EPP + Wood composites are excellent flyers and light but cosmetically not so appealing. The Foam jobs can have incredible detail but the best for 3D are of course the EPP profile jobs.

The range is mind boggling from simple 2S electrics up to large gasoline jobs.


Lecaidduvol 08-18-2016 06:30 PM

Originally Posted by Mysterious (Post 998930)

We're looking for something that slow flies very well and is capable of all of the extreme 3-D maneuvers.

if you want someting that flies very slow, that keeps you advancing into 3D, there is only one serious way to go..the PA Addiction X.

Reg. the comments about quality of PA, my experience (7 planes) shows that it is second to none. PA is as far as I know, the only company which dares to show the inside of the wing construction.

Jonathan (France)

Before I forget, you get get the kits directly from the importor in germany (www.braeckman.com) and as far as I know at Dave Wilshere (Motors and rotors)

JetPlaneFlyer 08-18-2016 06:51 PM

Yes I agree, the construction of PA planes is like a work of art. Where I've had quality issues is finding bad warps and twists and also in the quality of the hardware supplied compared to similar priced (and even cheaper) alternatives.

I also found PA customer support very poor, in fact basically non existent. They never replied to emails or calls. But this probably varies region to region.

solentlife 08-18-2016 07:06 PM

My Mini Katana is very nice BUT ....

Wings have nuts inside fuselage instead of nice Thumb bolts as others use. Right pain to do those nuts.
Undercarraige held by tiny self-tapper screws into small triangle liteply fillets ... breathe on it and breaks away.
I picked up the model by the fuselage in front of tail ... never pressed hard at all ... CRACK ... longeron cracked under the covering.
Cowling does not fit fuselage and had to be dremel'd to fit.
Motor mount too long and recc'd motor sticks out like sore thumb ... I actually modified to try and get spinner lined up better.

Flying is excellent - it does it all in a compact machine. But I will NEVER buy PA again. The Construction is aimed at lightweight with no consideration to retain strength.

Extreme Flight are slightly heavier - but fly just as well and have strength.

You take your pick.

Back to OP and his 3D needs ... I still think a profile EPP job is the way to go. It will take the punishment of learning / improving 3D without the pain on the bank-balance !

The EPP / Ply models I showed earlier and people such as Jetplaneflyer, myself and many others have - gives a good compromise of both worlds - wood rigidity and form with EPP repairability.

Later when 3D ability is good ... then spend the money on Extreme Flight ... Precision Aerobatics .... Hyperion etc.


solentlife 08-18-2016 07:09 PM

[QUOTE=Lecaidduvol;999011]..................Reg. the comments about quality of PA, my experience (7 planes) shows that it is second to none. PA is as far as I know, the only company which dares to show the inside of the wing construction.

Jonathan (France)

Have a look at HYPERION ... it may just change your mind about that. instead of just adding a few CF spars / rods here and there ... Hyperion actually integrate CF into the structure to gain maximum benefit.


Lecaidduvol 08-18-2016 07:44 PM

sorry but I must say, that your comments are ridiculous. I do agree with you that the Katana Mini was at the time not perfect, but you are talking about a product that was the first PA kit with fiber Fusion and this happened 10 years ago. In the meantime, you will not believe it, PA has made some improvment in quality.

Further to this none of the other manufacturers does have the same approach to 3D like PA. All are way heavier (at least 10/15% - this is in my opinion a lot) and this feels in the air. But if you want a very agressive plane that rolls like hell (but this is not 3D anymore), then PA is nothing I would recommend.

EPP is for sure a way to START, but already nothing as second plane.

Looking at the Hyperion web site...I do not find any kits of plane. So difficult to compare. But it is a matter of fact that everyone has his preferences and should stick to them.

Jonathan (France)

road king 97 08-18-2016 07:47 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Jonathon if you build them yourself you can also see whats in the wing and keep track of the weight your putting into one . Me and Nigel build and buy some ARFs but to me building is half of the fun in this hobby and flying the other half. :D I enjoy building more than flying at this time but i will enjoy flying them all sooner or later ;) . It pains me to trust a guy in China or Japan to build my 200 dollar airplane after a night out of drinking . :eek: :D lol !00 inch wing span with batterys in her and 4 motors under 8 pounds :D

JetPlaneFlyer 08-18-2016 08:56 PM

Originally Posted by Lecaidduvol (Post 999015)
sorry but I must say, that your comments are ridiculous.

I'm not sure how comments can ever be 'ridiculous' if they are based on first hand experience? Maybe PA have improved some of those issues, if that's true then great, but people honestly expressing their opinions based on genuine first hand experience is never 'ridiculous'.

FWIW I popped over to RCG 3D forum where there is a more active 3D community than here on Wattflyer. I didn't have to scroll down very far at all before coming to a post complaining about PA quality and mentioning similar issues to those Soletlife and myself mentioned in our posts: http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showp...1&postcount=16

But PA isn't all bad, i agree if you want a super light 'floaty' 3D plane then they are outstanding performers.

PS... Yes, Hyperion is a bad example to compare against because as i understand it they have discontinued all their RC plane range.

solentlife 08-18-2016 09:00 PM

"Lecaidduvol" ... I am well aware of PA products THEN and NOW ... and still i will not buy another.
We have a dealer here who has their gear along with EF and Hyperion.

EF beats PA hands down in construction keeping strength and weight for the job.

My point of mentioning Hyperion is that they combined Liteply and balsa with CF in ways that PA are still finding out about. The CF in Hyperion is integrated into the structure far better than PA's just inserting a few bits here and there to try and solve a strength or stress issue.

The Mini Katana - yes its an old design but was updated and continued till the next slightly larger version came out ... I have inspected and considered that model till I saw that there was little change in fact ...

I agree that the Addiction is a fine flyer ... you only have to see Wargo fly it. But sorry - I do not regard it as a machine to learn 3D with from basics. As a machine to fine-tune and increase skills - yes ok.

We can agree to disagree as we all have our preferences. PA is yours, Hyperion / EF is mine.......


road king 97 08-18-2016 09:08 PM

I dont even know what PAs is or what they sell anyone got a link ? lol joe

JetPlaneFlyer 08-18-2016 09:15 PM

'PA' = Precision Aerobatics.
They sell a line of very lightweight balsa/ply ARF 3D planes. Their 'special feature' is integration of carbon fibre into their structure to come up with strong but very light airframes. They are at the higher end of the price range.


road king 97 08-18-2016 09:18 PM

Thanks JetPlaneFlyer but dollar tree foam is cheap .lol joe

DHC Beaver 08-18-2016 09:46 PM

I had a 3d model called a "Limbo Dancer".Apparently this was a kit made in the UK,but someone gave the plan to the club,and most of us build the plane of the plan.
It could be built very light,and mine did everything on a 32 2-stroke.It was 48" span,and an all up weight of about 3lbs.The wing and undercart were all rubber banded on,meaning you werent going to do too much damage in a hard landing.
I know foam is lighter,but let,s face it,they are 1 crash aeroplanes.
If you are a relative beginner to 3d,i would go with something you can actually repair yourself after the inevitable "arrival".

road king 97 08-18-2016 10:37 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I got this on sale at my local hobby shop for 100 dollars and i fly it on 4cells it hovers nice . joe not mine factory photo :D

road king 97 08-18-2016 11:07 PM

3 Attachment(s)
My first 3-D plane i built was a ultron and i also learned how to fold over foam with foam ribs to make a wing . I hate flat wings just me i guess. http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...ghlight=ultron My wings for other planes now and my ultron . joe

Mysterious 08-18-2016 11:40 PM

Hey, thank you everyone for all of the replies thus far. I'm really appreciating you guys sharing your experiences and opinions and showing some of the things that you have bought and flown and enjoyed or had trouble with. It's giving me a lot of information that myself and my friend can think about in the coming weeks to decide what way we're going to go.

My biggest fear with the precision acrobatics is as some people have mentioned quality issues in terms of things being warped and as well as the durability. I've never heard those comments about the stuff at extreme flight or 3-D hobby shop. I guess I really have to decide personally whether I'm ready for a balsa. As some of you had mentioned there's some really nice foam or partial foam airplanes out there that are excellent performers and obviously have a great ease in repair ability

My friends heavily leaning towards the addiction XL so this will be great information for him as well. Please keep any other further information comments or suggestions you guys have coming. More information is never a bad thing. Thank you again for the continued replies

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