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Flyzone Calypso

IamNabil

Senior Member
#1
So, in the other thread, thoughts on the radian vs the bixler I spoke about not knowing what to get, and trying to find something interesting to fly before this weekend, which is forecast to be the nicest weekend this summer. I called every shop within three hundred miles, and not a single one had ANYTHING on my list. I was a very sad panda. And then I found a shop, about one hundred and ten miles away, in Saratoga, called Adirondack Train and Hobby. Not a very promising name, and called them. The man that answered the phone was concerned, helpful, and (I think) named Frank. Anyway, I told him that I wanted a starter glider, and I wanted it for this weekend. I listed a few models I was looking for, and he started to apologize, saying he couldn't help me, when he stopped short.

"Ever heard of a Calypso?" he asked.

"No," I replied.

"It's brand new. Just got it last week. Not many other stores have them. Glider, from Flyzone," he explained.

"Tell me about it. Who makes it? I'm new, I've never heard of Flyzone"

*clack**clack**clack* went my keyboard, as my fingers flew across the black plastic chicklets on my MacBook Pro. I was only sort of half listening to Frank, as the Flyzone website came up, and I was disappointed. Calling it less-than-elegant is an understatement. Then I clicked on the list of planes, and my mood soured further. Nothing on the page was what I was looking.... stop.

There! The long, green tipped wings gives it away. I look at the pictures. I try paying attention more to Frank, but I am caught, pulled between two masters. My greed and impatience on one side, my appreciation for grace and beauty on the other.

I, mumbling, I am sure, asked Frank "What do you think it would cost to ship this to Burlington, Vermont, and get it here before close of business tomorrow?"

"I don't know. There is a UPS store right across the road. I could call them and ask, if you'd like," he replied.

After giving him my zip code, I hung up the phone, and waited for the call back. I was excited, but also pretty sure that it wasn't going to happen the way I wanted. I would have to round up the wife and dog, and take a little road trip. I love driving, but I want to be flying! I've never flown something this large, and I am getting punch-drunk looking at the pictures.

Frank called me back ten minutes after I hung up the phone. And then he told me.

"Sixteen dollars for UPS ground. They tell me that you will almost certainly have it tomorrow, but they can't guarantee it. Saturday delivery is a bit more."

I gave him my card number immediately. Last night was spent reading the scant, but glowing, reviews on the Calypso.

Today, I walked into my office at 1300, in from a security meeting for a client, and there, on my desk, all brown and long and shiny, was my Calypso package.
It had arrived.

*Certainly to be continued!*
 

IamNabil

Senior Member
#5
Well, I am hoping to have a true maiden tomorrow. Saturday I brought it to the nearby school yard, put the wings on, and put her in the air. The wind immediately kicked up, and I realized that the space I was in was way, way too small, so I brought her back down in a slightly-less-than smooth manner. I reached out to the local RC club, Green Mountain RC Club, and offered to join up, so I have enough room to get used to the plane. The city is just too cramped for the first few flights.
She responded very crisply to input, but with a ten mile an hour side wind, and a few gusts, it was very hard to keep her from flying away. As much as I wanted to have a real maiden story for today, she is too pretty to watch fly away. I am meeting up with GMRC tomorrow, I may have more to add on Wednesday.

Until then, though, I do have a few more pictures to add. First, a size comparison against a standard magazine.

calypso1.jpg

The single wheel landing gear seems novel. I don't believe I've seen something like it on a foam glider before. It is gigantic.

calypso2.jpg

And finally, a shot of it on the parking lot next to the field. I do quite love the way it looks. It came with the tactic, and although that radio won't be staying forever, I have yet to decide what to replace it with.

calypso3.jpg
 
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IamNabil

Senior Member
#8
After a quick dinner, I loaded the Calypso, tail-feathers first, into my car, and drove two towns over, to a rural area straddling Essex Junction and Westford, to join up with the Green Mountain RCers. I introduced myself to the folks, and found that they were doing a liquidation sale for a local RC guy, the founder of Vermont Sailplane. He had an eHawk 1500 for $75 and a number of other planes for 50-60 percent of their retail price. I immediately bought the Hawk. Settled in, I grabbed the Calypso from the car, slotted in the wings, carefully made sure that everything was tightened down, and set off for the flight line.

I was, at this point, terrified. This plane was twice as expensive as a Bixler, and I had it in the air for all of ten seconds before I realized that I couldn't fly it downtown. The wind was too rough, and the memory of it had me nervous. Hell, I was just plain frightened. The only other plane I had flown was a Ultra Micro P-51.

Handing off the controller to someone with more experience to dial in the trim, I threw the plane, and watched in amazement as the tail didn't fall off, and it didn't fall out of the sky.

IMG_0182.JPG

In the air, trimmed out, she is nothing but grace. Even my stupid fingers could make her turn gracefully through the air. She climbs decently well, and her glide slope was easily thirty feet forward for a foot of lost altitude tonight. Not an easy plane to land.

IMG_0181.JPG

There are some things about her I need to figure out. Her elevator has a ridiculous amount of authority, and she climbs at an easy 60 degrees when you open up the throttle.

IMG_0192.JPG

I am obviously a new pilot, but figure eights were nothing after the first battery. Unfortunately, I only have one, and it takes about an hour and a half to charge off of my car battery. I only got in two flights tonight. But they were amazing.

IMG_0194.JPG

I wish my iPhone could capture the color of these last two pictures better. The sky wasn't blue, and neither was the Calypso. Everything was orange. The plane, the sky, the sunlight scattering across the corn field. It was the exact moment that I was hoping to have.

IMG_0195.JPG

I guess I can sum up my maiden flight pretty easily. I adore the Calypso.
 

lobstermash

Propaganda machine
Mentor
#10
Very nice! And great to hear you got an eHawk, especially at that price! Take your time building it - mine took forever (compared to any foamy I've built), and I did it in a hurry and had glydr helping me for some of it.

Now that we've seen some pics of the Calypso in flight, time for some vids!
 

lobstermash

Propaganda machine
Mentor
#12
Alternately you could reduce the throw on the elevator mechanically (moving the control rod connection further out on the control horn and/or moving the control rod further in on the servo arm). You'll have to re-trim it again afterward though.

Or you could just get used to it. I've only got one plane that I've reduced throws through programming, which is my ME109. Too much rudder is not a good thing on a warbird...
 

IamNabil

Senior Member
#13
I've got one more hole I can use to retard the elevator a bit. It required quite a lot to trim it out, so I need to take a look at the linkage anyway.
 

pgerts

Old age member
Mentor
#14
You will love the E-Hawk but you have to land it with some speed - never stall it down.
Wait until you are safe with your foamie. The throws on both ail and tail are tiny but there is no need for more.
For the foamie - try to program spoilerons as it will make the arrivals a lot shorter - unless you have a 4 servo wing and can get a crow.
 

IamNabil

Senior Member
#15
Actually, I can go crow. There are cutouts to add flaps. I just need some servos and a better radio setup. I am using a tactic radio (don't laugh, it was free) so I have no program in options.
 

IamNabil

Senior Member
#16
Very nice! And great to hear you got an eHawk, especially at that price! Take your time building it - mine took forever (compared to any foamy I've built), and I did it in a hurry and had glydr helping me for some of it.

Now that we've seen some pics of the Calypso in flight, time for some vids!
I am very excited for the eHawk, but I want to save it for a winter build. Or, at least, a not this month build. It is the purply-pink one. I like that it uses the same size batteries as the Calypso, so I can stock up. Unfortunately, the Calypso comes with 3.5 ST connectors, which are similar or identical to HXT, I guess. The Flyzone batteries are something like 25 dollars a piece, 1100 mAh, 3c. I could get something like 7 turnigy's plus new plugs for the price of two of them, but then I would need to solder on new connectors somewhere, and that means picking a standard. I know that I will eventually have to pick a connector standard. I just don't want to yet.

I suck pretty bad on the controls. I don't think you want to see a video of me flying the Calypso!
 

lobstermash

Propaganda machine
Mentor
#17
Ah, yes, the 'magenta', like my one :) I had the choice of yellow or magenta. The latter looks much better I reckon.

When you have a look around at batteries, HK's ones are so cheap it's hard to justify the extra cash for batteries from elsewhere! I'd order HK batteries and match the ESC connector to them if I were you...

I stubbornly went with Deans connectors initially, but eventually succumbed to XT60, just because most HK stuff uses these and you get sick of changing connectors all the time. XT60s are OK, but you just have to 'adjust' the male connector (with pliers) to make them a little easier to come apart.

Speaking of connectors, the eHawk comes with 2.5mm connectors for the motor and ESC. I ditched these and went with the standard 3.5mm ones to be compatible with the rest of the world.