September 13, 2010
Product: The Sukhoi SU-26xp takes everything that made the Sukhoi SU-26m ultra micro a hit and adds a more powerful 8.5mm coreless motor, new 130mm x 70mm propeller, and larger control throws for even more aerobatic excitement. You can have it flying in as little time as it takes you to charge the 150mAh battery and bind it to a DSM2 transmitter. The product works best when using a transmitter that has exponential and dual rate functions.
Photo by Greg Covey (all images)
The eye-catching box design is as impressive as the plane itself. It provides an easy way to store the charger, batteries, and plane for safe keeping or transport. The outside of the box contains photos of everything contained inside and also shows a simple set of 1-2-3 instructions to convey just how easy it is to get started.
Performance: Since no assembly was required, I was ready to test fly after charging the flight battery for about 15 minutes. I bound my Sukhoi SU-26xp to a JR 9503 2.4GHz transmitter and set the exponential function to 40% on the ailerons, rudder, and elevator. After testing all the controls, I gave the Sukhoi a light toss and flew for it for about 7 minutes. I was impressed with the amount of control I had right out of the box and could easily fly it in a small area. I remember having to perform a modification on the original Sukhoi SU-26m model to get a decent roll rate but the new Sukhoi SU-26xp had plenty of authority on all the control surfaces. Further, I did not have to add my own color tape because the 26xp’s trim scheme provided much better visibility and orientation during flight. The plane is so light that it would be difficult to damage when flying over grass so your own backyard makes a great place to practice some 3D maneuvers. Although I did not test it off pavement, the Sukhoi SU-26xp even has a steerable tail wheel.
The Sukhoi SU-26xp performs scale and 3D aerobatics with plenty of power. It is designed for intermediate pilots who have some aerobic experience with aileron-equipped airplanes as well as advanced 3D pilots.
Since the plane can also fly in some wind, it may have a wide range of potential customers. By moving the battery a bit forward, the plane can easily handle some wind and still has plenty of power for knife edge passes. When flying in a wooded area or yard with trees, running a narrow strip of clear shipping tape along the entire leading edge of the wing helps keep the plane in great shape.
Marketing: Since the ParkZone Sukhoi SU-26xp comes with everything you need to fly (except the transmitter), it makes a perfect gift for experienced hobbyists that want something to fly in their own yard or in the evenings in calmer conditions. The attractive box will help sell the product and is certain to attract most sport-scale flyers. The plane is very capable of 3D maneuvers and the power system is strong enough to fly outdoors in some wind.
If the customer has only previously purchased ParkZone RTF products, be sure to introduce them to some lower cost DSM2 transmitters like the Spektrum DX6i or DX7. I have used these transmitters and discovered that they work just as well as my more expensive JR 9503 transmitter. By using the dual rates and exponential features on these transmitters, less experienced pilots can enjoy the Sukhoi SU-26xp as an aerobatic trainer. Note that the lowest cost DX5e transmitter does not have an exponential feature and should be avoided when flying the Sukhoi SU-26xp.
Some key spares to keep on hand would be the 3.7V 150mAh LiPo battery (EFLB1501S), 3.7V 160mAh LiPo battery (THP1601SL25UM), and the 130mm x 70mm prop with spinner set (EFL9051). Note that just about every part of this model can be purchased as a spare part.
Product: Sukhoi Su-26xp BNF
Stock No.: PKZU1080
Availability: Horizon Hobby
Powerful 8.5mm coreless motor; larger throws
Vibrant trim scheme
Includes charger and all batteries; just charge, bind and fly