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Thread: Questions regarding the Samurai

  1. #1
    Posting Questions from Customers Customer Questions's Avatar
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    Questions regarding the Samurai

    I have assembled and successfully flown the Samurai. I am an experienced RC pilot but new to sailplanes. I also have a Radian and a Radian Pro. I am using Horizonís DX8 model for the Radian Pro and make use of the flaps, camber, reflex, and crow.

    I am using Sky 2s 2200 batteries and needed 1.5 ounces of lead in the nose to get it to balance. My AUW is 36.5 ounces.

    I flew my Radian Pro at The Lump overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway but it was so floppy in the slope wind that it wasnít much fun. I got the Samurai for slope soaring there but would also like to be able to thermal soar with it if possible.

    Here are my questions:

    - I cannot get the ESC brake to work. There is a quick 4-tone sequence when I first plug in the battery comprised of 2 high pitch then 2 low pitch tones. Iíve tried repeatedly to put the throttle at high and then move it to low as soon as the 4 tones finish. However the brake does not engage.

    - What should the ballpark flap and elevator deflections be for landing? Do you recommend also using crow? How much up deflection do you recommend for the ailerons?

    - What wing configuration(s) do you recommend for thermal soaring? Should I camber the wing with both flap and ailerons? What ballpark deflections for aileron, flap, and elevator would you recommend?

    - Is there any use for flaps at mid position? I can see how it would be useful to camber the whole wing but I donít know when I would just use the mid-flap position.

    - Is there any reason to use reflex? The Samurai seems so quick and has so much sink in normal configuration that I have a hard time seeing when I would make use of reflex.

    I am also posting this to RC Groups in order to get input from other sailplane pilots. However, I am most interested in hearing your thoughts on how to best set this plane up.
    Last edited by Hobby Express; 11-12-2012 at 04:21 PM.

  2. #2

    Questions Regarding *Samurai* -- Not Radian Pro

    Sorry if this wasn't clear but these questions are about a Samurai -- not my Radian Pro. I only mentioned that as a reference point since it also has flaps and I have it programmed for various wing configurations.

    Thanks,
    Eric

  3. #3
    I'll answer in order. OK first of all, Hi. I started my flying career at the lump almost 15 years ago. It is a fantastic place to fly and I dearly miss my weekends on that hill. By the way if you want some serious sloping conditions then Tater Hill west of Boone is the place to be. It's private property, but they have been very nice in letting folks fly there. It's arguable the best sloping on the east coast.

    Alright back to your questions.

    The brake is tricky. Give me a call sometime when you have plane available and I'll listen on the phone and walk you through what to do. 615-732-7217.

    I only use full flap to land. I never needed to mix in elevator compensation as it wasn't too much difference and I just fly the plane. You could call it being lazy I guess, but it's never bothered me enough to add in the compensation. Setting up full crow would help a lot because it's a floater. Usually you would max out the up aileron deflection for that.

    Don't overthink it here. It thermals well without much fussing around. Sometimes I'll put about 8mm of flap deflection in to give is some extra lift while soaring.

    Same as above, it's nice to use a mid flap position, but with less travel to add some lift to the wing.

    No reason for reflex in my mind. It's pretty clean and fast when you want it to be.

    Hope that helps. Maybe next year when it warms up again I'll visit and we can fly together. I would love to get there as I didn't get a trip in to Boone this year for flying.

    Thanks,
    Jason Cole

  4. #4
    Thanks for the tips Jason. I'll try what you recommend.

    I'll call later and see if we can't get the brake engaged. How big a difference will that make on the sink rate? It sure seemed to be windmilling a lot without it.

    I had a couple of different expert pilots helping me with the maiden flights and I don't think they understood what I was trying to accomplish with the flaps. It kept ballooning on both mid and landing flaps but I think they were flying it under power and were having a hard time understanding that I wanted to use both settings with it gliding.

    So glad to hear it thermals well. I modified the aerobatic slope soarer model in Phoenix to have a similar wing loading to the Samurai, set the thermals to 60% strength, and practiced catching thermals. I think I'm starting to understand just how differently these types of planes perform compared to my Radians. At least in the sim it glides much more quickly through the sky but gains altitude fine once you discover a thermal. Once you have height it is fun to do little dives to gain speed. The aerobatics are much more solid and precise than with my foamies.

    That would be great if you could visit sometime. I'm in Winston-Salem and it's only about 1 hour to W Kerr Scott Dam Google Maps. This is a fantastic place to slope and if the wind is down it is a lovely location to thermal. The Lump is only about 45 minutes from there. I'm a member of two different clubs and also active on the NC Soaring group on Yahoo. Those guys are hardcore soaring enthusiasts and are mostly in the Raleigh and Wilson areas. They know some great locations to slope and thermal in their neck of the woods.

    I'm not sure if you would like to schedule a work/personal trip but I could probably arrange for you to conduct a soaring clinic for us at RAMS RAMS | Riverside Aero Modelers. I think it would spark more interest in soaring if people understood just how accessible soaring is with something like a Radian RE on a good day and how far you can push the limits with sleeker ships. I'm finding the keys to having fun with this are basic understandings of proper weather conditions, strategy, and flying technique. I've only been at this a few weeks but I can now get 30+ minute flights on a good day with less than a minute of motor run-time.

    Eric

  5. #5
    Nice. Talk to you later today. Maybe we can schedule something for March. I know several of us here are in for a trip. The slope slights here are marginal at best. I've done just about everything you can do in this hobby and sloping is still my hands down favorite activity. I'm glad you're having fun with it.

  6. #6
    I tried a different ESC with the brake on and that greatly improved the sink rate. Dropping the flaps 8 mm and adding 10% down elevator mix worked well to improve lift. Full flaps with crow enabled me to land at less than walking speed into a headwind. That's a really wide speed envelope given landings without flaps are so hot it slides on the grass for several yards before stopping after touchdown.

    I'm still tweaking and playing with stuff like full-span camber with down elevator mix all controlled by the DX8 pot knob and activated by the mix switch. Still, even without anything fancy the Samurai is a joy to fly with just the simple setup I have working so far.

  7. #7
    Oh ... and 25% down elevator mix for full flaps works well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Control Freak View Post
    I tried a different ESC with the brake on and that greatly improved the sink rate. Dropping the flaps 8 mm and adding 10% down elevator mix worked well to improve lift. Full flaps with crow enabled me to land at less than walking speed into a headwind. That's a really wide speed envelope given landings without flaps are so hot it slides on the grass for several yards before stopping after touchdown.

    I'm still tweaking and playing with stuff like full-span camber with down elevator mix all controlled by the DX8 pot knob and activated by the mix switch. Still, even without anything fancy the Samurai is a joy to fly with just the simple setup I have working so far.

  8. #8
    Nice, glad you're having fun with it!

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