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RipMax Alienator

who's still got one?

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David E24/04/2009 18:07:55
332 forum posts
13 photos
Just as I was going to ask for recommendations for a prop, motor, esc and battery combo for an old and slightly battered RipMax Alienator, up pops a photo of one in an article on discontinued items!
I have just picked one up 2nd hand minus prop, motor, batteries and ESC. It's possibly the most ugly model plane ever made (and the paint scheme on this one is crazy, the plane was thrown in with another 2nd hand plane I bought, probably because no-one wanted this ugly duckling!) but I'd like to get it flying.

I've tried searching around to see what others have used, but being old, it's all brushless and NiCad setups.
I'll have to post a photo some time, the paint job is quite special!!! :D

Edited By David E on 24/04/2009 18:08:30

Tim Mackey24/04/2009 18:57:45
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Right - first off it dont have to be ugly - subjective opinion of course, but I reckon mine looked pretty evil, in a cool way IYKWIM. Mine had a Mega 22/20/3E inrunner and ran on 3S 2000 m/a Kokam Lipos and a 9 X 6 folder prop - this gave 495 Watts which came out at 190 Watt per lb.
Went rather well
I have another NIB here waiting in the queue of things to build, and will use the same setup, except that batteries will be lighter and hold better voltage than the old 12C Kokams of those days - also will cost a heck of a lot less ( they were over £45 each ) Yikes


Edited By Timbo - Moderator on 24/04/2009 18:59:33

Paul Adams24/04/2009 22:47:19
217 forum posts
22 photos
Picked one up at a model auction a couple of months ago, partly built but without any instructions. Can find plenty of info on which motor to fit, how to strengthen it,  but can not locate anything as to where the C of  G should be located and what control throws to use. Can anyone advise?
Thanks in advance.  Paul
Tim Mackey25/04/2009 08:34:31
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Hi Paul, hang on I will dig out the manual. Right COG is located at 95 mm forward of the central spar. However I found in practice that mine ( or me at least ) lliked it best at around 90mm. Control throws incidentally are 20mm each and every way on el and ail.

Edited By Timbo - Moderator on 25/04/2009 08:38:18

Paul Adams25/04/2009 08:56:13
217 forum posts
22 photos
Thanks Timbo, much appreciated. Hopefully have it flying in a couple of weeks and will send you an update.  
Tim Mackey25/04/2009 09:04:06
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Cool.... I loved mine and thats why I bought another - even though it had flown a heck of a lot. It was back in the dark ages before 2.4Ghz and wa sthe only model I have ever lost in the last 15 years or so due to radio failire. I was on PCM JR gear, and had a PCM lockout which sent the surfaces to the preset failsafe positions which I had dialled in.
These were - throttle off,  ailerons level, and tad of up elevator. Should have been fine then.
However PCM lockout occured whilst  inverted, about 2 ' off the deck
Needless to say its replacement will be on 2.4Ghz
David E25/04/2009 20:50:40
332 forum posts
13 photos
Timbo, that's quite a neat paint job. The black stripes help to hide the shape of the canopy and the fins, which are the bugliest parts IMHO.
CofG and throws info will be useful.
The 22/20/3E seems to sell for £70-£75 pounds. Is that the general price for motors of sufficient power for this model, or are there cheaper options out there now with similar specs?

Tim Mackey25/04/2009 22:49:21
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
There will be plenty of cheaper suitable motors around these days David - I was bit limited in those days, and the Mega motors, although excellent motors are not cheap !
AUW was only a tad over 2lb so aim for say 300 Watts and it will be fast. If I was choosing a powertrain today, I would probably go outrunner and a slightly larger prop.
Bert26/04/2009 15:53:53
482 forum posts
Mine went very well with the Aveox 1406/3 and eight nicads. IIRC I used an 8 x 6 APC - a bit overpropped on the ground but it must have unloaded a bit in the air because I didn't burn it out! There wasn't a lot of room and the ESC had to sit next to the nicad pack which got quite hot, the ESC didn't give any trouble in spite of this treatment.
If I can find a photo I'll post it.
David E27/04/2009 14:52:19
332 forum posts
13 photos
Thanks for all the info. I must admit I'm a bit baffled by brushless motors. The specifications provided by retailers always seem incomplete (at least they give different info for each motor!) and I've no idea how to work out what motor/prop combo provides the wattage I'm looking for!
Perhaps I should give someone like Puffin a call and work out a good combo? I hear they're well clued up...
Tim Mackey27/04/2009 15:15:32
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Puffin are indeed well clued up on such stuff - but be warned they dont sell cheap stuff
( not meant as a criticism incidentally )
If you want budget gear, then try BRC or perhaps foamyjets etc.
Go for a medium Kv motor ( around 1100 - 1500 maybe )  and a 9 X 6 flew mine very well on 3s Lipo. Aim for approx 250 watts, which on 3s is about 24A, so a 30A ESC  with a BEC unit for radio power should do you. I did give a link earlier to something that would be OK.
flytilbroke27/04/2009 21:54:24
2085 forum posts
5 photos
I nearly ordered a brushless and Bec for mine which has been in the hanger for the last five years. Went for an "over the top " 'puter instead. Next year perhaps, at least the woodworm won't touch it.
David E28/04/2009 13:00:34
332 forum posts
13 photos
So... if I purchased:
The motor Tim suggested:
a 33A, 2-3S, 2A BEC, Brushless ESC:
A 2250mAh 20C lipo:
and a prop:
I should be ok?
Would I need a prop saver or a spinner? I notice that the front of the cowling is quite a large diameter? Or would a folding prop be a much better option for this model? eg:
I've seen a few places where people mention about 3lb for all up weight. Is this because of older brushed motors and nickel cells? If it is about 3lb, will the setup above still be ok for moderate performance? (don't need anything tooo crazy just now!)
Many thanks guys - I feel like i'm really struggling to get my head around all the technicalities of motor specs, powers, props etc. so this is a great help.
David E28/04/2009 13:04:08
332 forum posts
13 photos
Ouch! BRC seem steep for postage! Seems you don't make any savings putting lots of things in one order
Tim Mackey28/04/2009 13:20:30
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
I doubt you will end up at 3lb TBH David. I glassed mine for strength, and added extra spars here and there also, and still ended up at only just a tad over 2lb.
I recommend a foldi ng prop - I used a very nice graupner setup from Puffin ( 9 X 6 ) with a good quality collet style prop adaptor and ali spinner - completre with cooling hole in the tip. I will see if I can find it and post a piccy. Not cheap.....but very good.
Tim Mackey28/04/2009 13:26:51
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Here ya go.... still with the mud on it from its demise of several years back
If you do buy one or something similar - be very sure you get one with the correct collet for the shaft size of the motor you get.

These can and do vary by just fractions of a mm and they are not interchangeable.
Tim Mackey28/04/2009 13:30:48
20946 forum posts
303 photos
15 articles
Incidentally, on costings - the Mega motor on mine ( as in picture ) whemn purchased back then cost me over £60, the JETI 40 ESC was around the same amount, and the battery ( Kokam 2000 at just 12C was about £45 ). Heck of a cost for a 30 quid foamyy
Hope that helps to keep things in perspective
David E28/04/2009 15:12:20
332 forum posts
13 photos
Hehe, yeah, the issue with the cost side of it is that my wife is complaining that this hobby is too expensive, and I haven't even got anything I can fly outdoors yet!
The other aircraft I picked up with this one is a Multiplex Twinjet with two brushed 480s that just needs a battery and some rewiring for my receiver's connectors. I'd like to get the alienator airworthy as a 2nd aircraft in case of black bag usage. Because of this I may put off buying the gear for the Alienator a little while, but I want to know what to get and how much it'll cost so I can budget for it, and maybe to buy bit by bit!
Norman Adlam01/05/2009 17:57:20
12 forum posts
2 photos
Aaahhh, you've all teased me now!
I've had a brand new Alienator in the box in my model room for a few years - and after reading this have decided to finally build it!

Will fit it out with a brushless setup, of course!

David E01/05/2009 18:07:42
332 forum posts
13 photos
Here we go, photo of aforementioned alienator. I don't think the photo quite does it's ugliness justice! The orange bits are bright orange, not as red as they look in the picture. The grey foam is also showing through the paint in most places. Note chunk missing on far left of picture, dented leading edges, repaired crack at wing root and numerous cooling holes! I suppose it's growing on me though, I suppose.
Looks like a 50mm spinner is needed to make a smooth shape with the front moulding.
The better news is that I got the Twinjet flying last night! :D What a blast!

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