Mid size electric RC planes and how to select, build and fly the ideal RC electric plane for you.
Photo shows the E-Flite DHC-2 Beaver 25e
The mid sized RC electric plane is maybe the most popular size in the hobby today. Bigger than the usual park flyer, they generally require a larger field, like the local model plane club flying field.
They can be transported to the field with the minimum of problems and the size translates to a very good flight performance. The price of the airframe and the power system is reasonable and the range of ARFs and ready to fly models is expanding every day.
I have built and flown this model recently and can recommend it with out reservation! In the field of scale RC electric planes, this is a first class example. With a wing span of 68" and a finished weight of 4.9 to 6.2lbs, this RC airplane is full of scale detail and flies beautifully.
Please excuse the clutter in the background, but this photo of the box gives you a good idea of the size. This is a BIG box!
I always find it exciting at this stage-The box has not been opened yet!
Here is the first look inside-everything is very well packed and protected. I am very glad to say that there were no broken or damaged parts. The next job was to check that all the parts were there. The manual contains a list and photos of all the components.
This view, looking down into the fuselage, gives you a good idea of the overall excellent quality of the kit. This is one of the better examples of today's electric RC planes and what you can expect. Horizon Hobby (E-Flite's parent company) have a reputation for excellent quality and this ARF lives up to their high standards.
The majority of the construction is from laser cut lite ply. This makes for a light and strong construction-just what is required for an electric model aircraft!
Note that the interior has been painted and notice the control rod tubes on the right.
I cannot emphasize how important a good manual is in the building of an electric RC plane. The manual included with this kit is of first class quality and contains few if any mistakes. However, there are a few areas where I had minor problems and I will list them below.
I see little point in giving a detailed sequence in building this electric RC plane. Just follow the steps in the manual and take into account the points I list below. I decided to use the RC electric motor, electronic speed control and the lipo battery as recommended by E-flite. I did decide to use the Power 32 RC electric motor.
I believe these are very minor points and the overall design and quality of this electric RC plane is first rate!
The completed model was balanced as shown in the manual. The weight was as listed and everything was checked again prior to the first flight.
It was a beautiful day at the model plane club flying field and after range checking and making sure things were ok, prior to flight I was out of excuses and had to fly!
The model was taxied out from the pits to the runway and headed into the light breeze. A final check that all controls were moving in the correct directions, then the throttle was slowly advanced. The Beaver moved forward, and little left rudder was applied to keep her heading straight down the runway. The tail came up on it's own and a little more throttle was applied and with the slightest amount of up-we were flying!
A little down trim was required but that was it! The Beaver was flying straight and true. A few low passes were made to get a feel for the landing and it was decided to land without flaps for this first attempt.
The landing was very good, with no bounce and the taxi back to the pits was good, All in all a very good first flight!
Unfortunately I was out of time and had to head home but I will keep you informed of future flights of this super electric RC plane.
It has been a few years since I built the Beaver and wrote this page. This is my first attempt at electric RC planes and I must say the experience has been first class!
I fly the Beaver every time I go to the flying field. It is the ideal size of model, small enough to fit in the van with a larger model yet big enough to fly very well. It can do all the scale type aerobatics that I like and lands like a pussy cat!
The 32 size motor has all the power you will ever need and I am sure it will fly fine with a 25. All in all a great model and highly recommended!