RCU Review: Hangar 9 P-51 Mustang PTS

RCU Review: Hangar 9 P-51 Mustang PTS
 RCU Review: Hangar 9 P-51 Mustang PTS More On This Product
Discussions on this Product Show user ratings Check for Retailers Contributed by: Mike Buzzeo | Published: April 2006 | Views: 103987 |
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Review by: Mike Buzzeo (MinnFlyer) Email Me
Introduction
Specifications
First Look
Assembly
Posing Time
Flight Report
Summary
Manufacturer Information
"Can I start out with a P-51?"
Many instructors have heard that phrase so often it has become a
cliché. And our answer is always the same - No!
Now, old habits die hard, and I'll be the first to admit that I can be
as stubborn as a mule when it comes to change. On the other
hand, I do try to keep an open mind, and I'll be the first to embrace
hand, I do try to keep an open mind, and I'll be the first to embrace
a new improvement, providing that it is indeed an improvement,
and not just hype.
Hangar-9
Distributed through Horizon Hobby
4105 Fieldstone Rd.
Champaign, IL 61822
Phone: (217) 352-1913
www.hangar-9.com/
So when Hangar-9 first introduced their Mustang PTS
(Progressive Trainer System) last summer, I was skeptical. In
fact, I was even a little angry that they would go ahead and
encourage the Novice to do something that we instructors have
fought so long and hard against. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not
one of those instructors who insists on students learning on a
basic trainer - in fact, I often prefer to train a newbie on an
advanced trainer anyway - but a War Bird?
Ok, I continued to investigate this so-called "Trainer". It is not a
scale P-51, that's good. And it employs a few added goodies to
keep it slow and stable - things like Flaps, Speed Breaks, and
most notably, Wing Droops to provide a high lift ratio.
This is starting to sound interesting.
Window Media Player
MUSTANG PTS VIDEO
Poor:
Acceptable:
Good:
Excellent:
Outstanding:
Packaging:
Construction:
Hardware:
Manual:
Ease of
Assembly:
Completeness of
Kit:
Covering Quality:
Takeoff:
Landing:
Basic Flight:
Advanced Flight:
Stall
Characteristics:
The Mustang PTS is Ready-To-Fly in that it has the engine
(Evolution PTS) and radio (JR 5-Channel Computer Radio)
pre-installed (Only minor final assembly is needed), and a Flight
Simulator is included in the package to boot. Something else that I
found to be extremely impressive is that it comes with a Buddy
Cord that will hook up to a JR OR Futaba Radio!
All in all, this is very impressive. But the proof of the pudding is in
the tasting. Can a newbie learn on this plane? Well, obviously with
the proper instructor and technique, anyone can learn on
anything, but is the Mustang PTS a good trainer?
As luck would have it, I have an ideal test subject. My daughter's
boyfriend Mark visited the field last September. It was his first
exposure to R/C Flying, and he was, to say the least, impressed.
Mark expressed a desire to learn to fly sometime, and being a
red-blooded American flier, I felt it was my duty to get him
addicted as soon as possible.
Mark lives about 85 miles from me, and winter was closing in fast,
so I figured his training would have to wait until spring, but when
the P-51 arrived, I thought this was an excellent chance to put it to
the test.
Just so you know, Mark has zero experience with R/C airplanes,
but he's an intelligent, well-rounded young man. My plan is to
have him assemble the plane with no input from me (I'll just take
pictures as he goes), and then I will leave him with the Simulator
so he can practice while I am not there.
So let's see how this little experiment turns out.
Name: Hangar-9 Mustang PTS (RTF)
Evolution TPS Engine
Pre-Installed Pre-Installed JR
5-channel Computer
Radio
Ultracote Covering
Attractive Covering
Scheme
Includes Flight
Simulator With
Computer Intreface
Cable
Buddy Box Cord That
adapts to JR Or
Futaba Tx
Forward Raked Main
Wheels Prevent
Nose-Overs And
Tracks Well On
Ground
Removable Air
Breaks And Wing
Droops To
"Clean-Up" The
Airframe As Student
Progresses
Flap Servo Mount
Ready For Servo
Engine Low End
Adjustment hits cowl.
Price: List: $570.99 - Street Price: $399.99
Wingspan: 58.25 in (1480 mm)
Wing area: 627 sq in (40.45 dm2)
Weight per Mfg: 6.5 - 7 lb (2.95 - 3.17kg)
Actual Flying Weight: 6.7 lb
Skill level:Trainer/Advanced Trainer/Advanced
Radio Used: JR XF421EX 5-channel computer radio
system JR R610 FM Rx
(4) JR NES-537 Servos for Throttle, Ailerons Elevator, Rudder
(Note: Radio Pre-Installed)
Channels Used: 5 total - Elevator, Aileron, Rudder, Throttle,
Flaps Required to Complete: CA glue
30-Min epoxy
Standard building tools
Optional Equipment: Standard Servo for Optional Flap control
Before I turned the Assembly over to Mark, I went over the parts and Manual myself, and frankly,
the more I saw, the more I liked. Construction was excellent, and the Radio and Engine were
nicely installed, and something that really impressed me as I perused the Manual was the Flap
setup.
Back in the summer, when I first browsed the PTS ads, I wrongly assumed that in order to keep
this plane inexpensive, there would be a lot of corner cutting. I fully expected to see flaps that
were simply bent downward by hand with some sort of soft wire hinges that held them wherever
they had been positioned. But as I read the Manual, I saw that torque rods controlled them with
the pushrod sliding into a two-position locking mechanism. My first thought was, "Great! I'm just
going to cut out a hole and mount a servo!" but Hangar-9 beat me to it. There is already a Servo
Mount in place under the covering.
I also incorrectly assumed that the supplied radio would be a 4-channel job - Nope - A 5-Channel
Computer radio is included! So when the student is ready to move up to "Working Flaps", all he
needs to do is to purchase an additional servo and he's ready to go.
Hangar-9 definitely gets kudos for that!
And when they say "RTF" they mean it! All radio equipment was preinstalled (and nicely done too
I might add). Even the Tail Wheel and the clevis for the Rudder were hooked up.
The Mustang also comes with an Evolution Trainer Power System. I am familiar with this engine
as I reviewed one a few years ago, and it's still one of my favorites. For the Evolution TPS review,
Click Here.
Ok, everything looks good - better than expected in fact, so it's time to kick back and watch T.V.
while Mark goes to work.
Manual
It's a pleasure to say that the Manual was great. Not only that,
but it is supplemented by a DVD version. Just pop it into your
DVD Player and watch the Step-By-Step instructions. I made
Mark do it the hard way though and gave him the printed
copy.
Since this is an RTF plane, assembly is almost ridiculously simple. In fact, without any help from
me, Mark was finished in just under an hour. I was amazed - Only one hour after he had started,
the Mustang PTS was sitting on charge.
All that is needed is to epoxy the wing-halves together, Strap the Landing Gear on, and bolt the
Stab in place.
Once epoxied, the wing halves get strapped together, the Flap pushrod is installed, and the Prop
and Spinner are fitted to the Engine.
It really couldn't be simpler!
Evolution TPS - A Closer Look
Evolution Trainer
Power System Perfect For The
Beginner, or Seasoned
Flyer
More than just another engine, the Evolution system is an innovative combination of
propeller and engine technology specifically designed to make it the easiest starting,
smoothest running power choice for .40 to .50-size trainers.
Download the manual in PDF format - Click here
Specs
Type: 2-stroke
Displacement: .45 cu in
Bore: .87 in
Stroke: .77 in
Cylinders: Single
Total Weight: 19.52 oz
Engine (Only) Weight: 16.32 oz
Muffler Weight: 3.20 oz
Crankshaft Threads: 1/4 x 28
Benchmark Prop: 10x4
RPM Range: 2,000-16,000 rpm
Fuel: 10% - 30% Nitro
Mounting Dimensions: 44mm x 17.5mm
Muffler Type: Cast
Cylinder Type: ABC
Check out the Evolution TPS at Horizon Hobbies, or read the RCU Magazine review
here
SIMULATOR
The Mustang PTS comes with Simulator Software and a Patch Cord which allows you to plug
the Transmitter directly into your PC.
The Simulator is far from some of the "State-Of-The-Art" Sims that are currently on the
market, but it is an excellent learning tool. One feature it DOES have is a "Chase" Mode,
where it places you directly behind that Airplane so you can follow a few feet behind the plane
as it flies. This is a great tool that I like to use when showing someone how the controls work
for the first time. By using the Chase Mode, we can follow along behind the plane to get a
close-up view of how it reacts to control inputs.
The Simulator also gives you the choice of flying 4 different models (Alpha 40 and 60 and the
Hanger-9 Arrow as well as the Mustang PTS) at 2 different fields.
Once Mark was comfortable with the controls, I put the Sim into its regular mode, where you
stand along side the runway, and had him get used to staying in one place while the plane
moved around him.
He was just getting the hang of it when he had to leave, so I sent the Tx and Simulator home
with him and told him to get lots of practice in until we could get together again.
The first time we got a break in the weather, I brought the Mustang PTS out to the field. Mark
wasn't available, so I did the Maiden Flight without him. The Evolution Engine needs no
breaking in, so all there was to do was fuel it up and go.
With the Mustang sitting at the end of the field, I poured the coals to it. The engine perked right
up, and she moved down the runway. It has a very stable track with only a little right rudder
needed to keep her straight, and with a little back pressure on the sticks, she was airborne.
Only a few minor trim adjustments were needed and the plane flew "Hands Off". Control
response was very good, but it seemed kind of sluggish. It wasn't long before I realized that it
was SUPPOSED to be sluggish - after all, this is a trainer!
I have to admit that it took some getting used to seeing a P-51, but not "feeling" a P-51. Once I
got into the mindset that I was flying a trainer, it seemed a lot more natural. Ok, time to run it
through the mill.
I put the PTS through a series of stalls. It passed with flying colors. Stalls were gentle,
predictable, and there was no sign of one wing dropping. The next batch of maneuvers
included Loops, Rolls, Immelmanns and Hammerheads - all were impressive.
Landing the PTS is like spreading soft butter. Due to the wide 3-blade prop, it is very throttle
responsive. I have no doubt that it would be a good platform for learning to land with - But I
will add here that this plane should be flown only with the supervision of a qualified instructor.
Mark finally got his chance the following weekend. To say he had never flown before he
certainly picked it up quickly - This says a lot for using a good simulator! In no time at all, he
was lining up with the runway and shooting approaches. He didn't land or take off that first
day, but I can see that a solo flight isn't too far in the future.
Next, we removed the Air Breaks. It felt as though the air got thinner! I liked the feel of the
plane much more this way. Back at the shop, I added a servo for the flaps and brought the
Mustang back to the field.
Without Mark there, I took it up, raised the Flaps, and flew it around. Very nice! Now she felt
much more maneuverable, yet it was still docile enough for an intermediate flyer. Once I got it
back on the ground, I couldn't resist the temptation to remove the final training aid - the Droop
Slats.
Now the Mustang was as clean as she's going to get. I got her in the air and I liked it! NOW
she's flying the way I like to fly! I ran her through the gauntlet of maneuvers and she
performed them all very well.
So there it is? She can be a slow, stable flying platform, or a good intermediate flyer, and go
right up to more advanced flying.
Nice job H-9!
Hangar-9 MUSTANG PTS
Windows Media Player Format
High Resolution
6.4m
Med Resolution
2.7m
Low Resolution
560k
So, is the Mustang PTS a good trainer? If your idea of a trainer is a high-wing floater that requires
rubber bands to hold the wings on, you probably won't like it. But if you can get passed that (As I
have) you'll find the combination that Hangar-9 has put together is more than just a good Trainer,
it's a very good Training System. It is not as stable as some of the intermediate trainers I have
used, but when you consider the entire package, it's hard to beat. The Evolution Engine is a
no-brainer. It's a great engine that runs well with minimal maintenance, and both the Radio and
Airframe have room for the novice to grow into. And by having your student spend time with the
included simulator, they can get passed the early stages of training by giving them hours of stick
time regardless of weather, and without any damage to their airplane.
And now, finally, thanks to Hangar-9 when a newbie asks if he can "Learn on a Mustang" we can
say, "YES"!
Hangar-9
Distributed through Horizon Hobby
4105 Fieldstone Rd.
Champaign, IL 61822
Phone: (217) 352-1913
www.hangar-9.com
JR Radios
Distributed through Horizon Hobby
4105 Fieldstone Rd.
Champaign, IL 61822
Phone: (217) 352-1913
www.jrradios.com
Evolution Engines
Distributed through Horizon Hobby
4105 Fieldstone Rd.
Champaign, IL 61822
Phone: (217) 352-1913
Evolution Engines
Posted by: Manny G. on 03/17/2009
Comments on RCU Review: Hangar 9 P-51 Mustang PTS
Posted by: Manny G. on 03/17/2009
Profile I agree that the P51 Mustang is a great trainer, I also have the Mustang MK II which is just as good but H9 removed
several items such as the simulator and buddy cord which I feel is a set back since the price remains the same. I also
noticed that the flaps now have individual servos which is a plus in my book. But there has been a recall on the radios
which as caused me to lose the Mustang MK II. I will get another one but until H9 fixes the problem with the radios I will
continue to fly my AT6 Texan and P47 Thunder bolt.
Posted by: Manny G. on 03/17/2009
Profile I agree that the P51 Mustang is a great trainer, I also have the Mustang MK II which is just as good but H9 removed
several items such as the simulator and buddy cord which I feel is a set back since the price remains the same. I also
noticed that the flaps now have individual servos which is a plus in my book. But there has been a recall on the radios
which as caused me to lose the Mustang MK II. I will get another one but until H9 fixes the problem with the radios I will
continue to fly my AT6 Texan and P47 Thunder bolt.
Posted by: Manny G. on 03/17/2009
Profile I agree that the P51 Mustang is a great trainer, I also have the Mustang MK II which is just as good but H9 removed
several items such as the simulator and buddy cord which I feel is a set back since the price remains the same. I also
noticed that the flaps now have individual servos which is a plus in my book. But there has been a recall on the radios
which as caused me to lose the Mustang MK II. I will get another one but until H9 fixes the problem with the radios I will
continue to fly my AT6 Texan and P47 Thunder bolt.
Page: 1 The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply
generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products
like the one featured in the review. EMAIL THIS ARTICLE OR CHECK OUT THESE OTHER GREAT REVIEWS!
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