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Great Planes Extra 330L Model Airplane Review, with BME 102
By Tim Attaway
This has a bme 102 , 8411's, mpx jumbo speed rudder and weighs about 23 pounds. I have broken it in on a Menz 26 10 s and it was turning about 6400 and the ac shakes abunch at idle but seems to smooth out as it transitions. I now have a 26 10 Bolly prop on it with an idle around 1100 and sorry did not get an accurate top on that prop yet. The motor stopped gurgling with the bolly and it spools up at the bottom of a vertical line very smoothly...it does not leap forward like with the Menz. Downlines seem a little slower and more controlled with the bolly. Overall I am pleased with the bolly for this ac with 50 flights or about 10 gallons of fuel thru the 102. I really would like to go with a 28 10 Mesjlik but there are none to be had.
Suffice to say at 23 pds and 45 pounds of thrust it has a lot of vertical. I like to hang it on the prop and then pull out ....do a snap and pull it out..etc.
Now to the Airplane
It flys beautifully, straight up lines, terrific point rolls of all types, tracks just great, rolls are nice especially in rollers. I am not that happy with snaps....however I think that my setup needs to be tweeked to get more and quicker rotation on the snaps. It does seem to overrotate in a spin recovery and I do not know why. With other planes I have flown the rotation is much easier to stop. It enters the spin very nicely and drops cleanly but it seems uncertain as to the release point on the sticks to get it to stop where i need it to stop.
Rolls seem to go off line ie. when I do two on a 45 the plane goes to the right indicating differential needs tweeking, maybe I need to address this soon...I have some dif. setup mechanically...but I may need more. These are the only detrimental things to be said about the flying ability and they may be resolved with someone more knowledgeable about set up.
CONSTRUCTION AND DURABILITY--
Here are my concerns in the order of importance:
The right wing panel began to come apart after about 40 flights.....Maybe my glue technique was bad. I used titebond to get away from fumes of CA
6 ribs shattered and the bottom
shear webbing above the wing tube separated. The top wing sheating separated
under this stress and i had to surgically repair all of this. I was lucky
the wing did not fail in flight.
I have repaired the canopy repeatedly and it has come off in flight 3 times. I redesigned the structure made four attachments to the fuse and reinforced ply on the inside of the fuse for 6 32 bolts with blind nuts and now using loktite to keep the bolts in and the canopy on.
The fuse sheeting has been reinforced repeatedly around the wing opening.
I had the stab set up too loose at the beginning and the vibration and snaps resulted in a bent stab tube which i replaced with heavier grade tube.
The wing bolts backed out on a flight not too long ago ....first time in 45 fllights and I felt a trim chance,,,thought the left ail.servo died...landed and the left wing trailing edge sank to the ground. yikes. again very lucky boy.
Redid the wing tube reception holes to include nyrod and problem seems to be solved. I really tossed it around the last three flights and everything is solid now.
The rest of the airplane parts are holding up well. Landing gear, cowl wheel pants, stab, engine box.....Maybe the other could have been avoided if I was more perceptive and a better builder...I do not know.
Anyway...I have it overpowered and it is not warranteed and I am hoping it will stay together long enough for me to enjoy and fly SCAT series this year.
Hope this is helpful, Tim