Avios Mig-17 Fresco 90mm EDF Assembly & Flight Review

Oh Avios MiG-17, mine kids hath dubbed thee “cow plane.”

Truth be told, I’m normally all about US airplanes generally, especially Navy jets, but if there was one Mig that I could have in my hangar, it would be the Mig-17.  I think it’s the highly swept wing that strikes me most about it in addition to the lengthened fuselage…that’s not to mention afterburner too!  Compared to it’s older brother, the Mig-15, the Mig-17 just has such nicer lines in my mind.  So, after seeing the Hobbyking Avios Mig-17, it was all I could do keep from ordering one!  Hobbyking has been putting out some nice airframes and I will say up front that the Avios Mig-17 is a nice sized, well finished airplane that is an extremely forgiving flyer.  There were however, some frustrations in the assembly process resulting in some rework that was required to get the airplane to where it needed to be.  Bottom line, the airplane could use better servos as they are pretty marginal in my mind and not very precise.

With the NATO reporting name of “Fresco,”  the Mig-17 found itself in use amongst numerous countries around the world and was especially prevalent during the Vietnam War.  There was in fact a secret program code named “HAVE DRILL” that took place in the late 60’s where a captured Mig-17 was tested at Groom Lake to characterize the performance and combat capability against various US aircraft.  Interestingly enough, in close air combat, the Mig-17 proved more maneuverable and dominant to the US fighters.  However, the more powerful US fighters such as the F-4 Phantom could out accelerate the Mig-17, so as a result, the engagement tactics were revised to keep the Migs at a distance vs fully engaging at close range.  This kept the US fighters out of the range of the Migs guns, while keeping it in range of the US guided missiles and having an acceleration advantage, the F-4 could be out of range of the guns in about 30 seconds.  In the case of the A-4, A-6, and A-7, they were given a do not engage order against the Mig-17.  A very interesting result considering that the Mig-17 was considered mostly out dated by that time!

 

AIRCRAFT ASSEMBLY NOTES

The Avios Mig-17 was nicely packaged and pulling the airplane from the box, you are greeted with the nice lines of the Mig-17.  Parts count is low and the finish is smooth with the paint applied well.  There are definitely some nice features like Continue reading

E-Flite P-39 Airacobra 1.2m Assembly & Flight Review

Airacobra Kai Never Dies!

The P-39 Airacobra is one of those well-proportioned and unique warbirds that, for whatever reason, you really don’t see very often at the field.  With the mid fuselage engine placement and long prop shaft design of the full size aircraft, the result is a nicely streamlined airplane.  So, I was excited to see E-flite announce their P-39 Airacobra 1.2m as it’s a great platform for a fantastic flying model and provides something you don’t otherwise see very often.  Plus, if you crash the airplane like we did…then hey, you get to refinish it and make it look even better! 😉

As a WWII fighter, over 9,500 Airacobras were built during its production from 1940-1944 marking it as one of the most successful aircraft built by Bell Aircraft.  The unique engine configuration allowed for the integration of a 37mm cannon in the nose which shot through the center of the spinner and needless to say packed quite the punch.  Though requisitioned by the US Army Air Force and operated by numerous countries, the airplane found its greatest success and use in the Soviet Red Air Force during WWII as its performance and armament suited their needs well.  In fact, five of the top ten highest scoring Soviet aces logged the majority of their victories in the P-39 Airacobra.

 

AIRCRAFT ASSEMBLY NOTES

I was excited for the E-flite P-39 Airacobra 1.2m as I really liked the looks of the airplane.  It arrived well packed and was an extremely simple assembly having only the major components to put together.  It starts with placing the tails and then bolting the one piece wing onto the fuselage.  I did find that the wing bolts were a little stiff to screw in in some cases, so be sure to check that the wing is fully seated and secure before flying.  Also, the kit includes a centerline tank which adds a little schmaltz giving it a neat look.  Note that the airplane does have hard mounted connectors in the wing, so be sure to double check through the hatch area that the are all fully seated well.

With the airplane assembled and on the bench, it really looks great and represents Continue reading