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Member postings for Jon - Laser Engines

Here is a list of all the postings Jon - Laser Engines has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: losing revs slowly at idle
05/07/2018 18:33:18

could be a number of things.

First off, which glowplug, fuel and prop are you using. Second, as it runs down does it do it smoothly or does it slowly stutter/stumble and cough itself to death.

Also, does it only do this just after startup or does it do it all the time, even after a blast at full power

Thread: expo for beginners yes or no ?
05/07/2018 09:46:21

I have one of those. Still on 35meg as well as i have a bunch of pcm rx's and they work fine. I also use an 8j for my 2.4ghz needs

Thread: Precedent Stampe 1/4 Scale
04/07/2018 23:27:03

yea you guys are safe. these are full size and should be good to watch. were it not for the logistical challenge we could offer to fly ours first, then they can show us how its really done!

04/07/2018 15:35:10

I got a notification from Shuttleworth on Facebook and apparently we have a booking. Check out the aircraft list for their August show


Thread: expo for beginners yes or no ?
04/07/2018 14:40:10
Posted by Lone_Wolf on 04/07/2018 14:23:08:

Thanks Jon I like the sound of that. I'll give it a try.

nice one, let us know how you get on.

04/07/2018 13:52:30

Im a thumb and finger man myself. I feel more in control of the model and feel i can be more accurate when i fly. I also find it handy when inverted as i position my finger so that the stick pinches it slightly. This reminds me which way the elevator has to go when i want to pull 'up'.

Personally not a fan of a neck strap though, i feel too confined for some reason and find it uncomfortable.

Wolf if you change your settings (not sure what you use now) you may find the model more responsive and yet it might also feel more solid and locked in.

If you want to try changing the setup i would start by working out roughly how much stick deflection you use in a roll (for example) and then land, measure the actual deflection of the control surface at that stick position and adjust the rates to give you that deflection at nearly full stick. Then wipe out all the expo and start again. You can do the same with elevator in say a loop or sharp pull up. I set up most of my models this way and my warbirds often need the elevator almost back to the stops to recover them from a loop. My La7 especially needs a firm yank as turbulent wash from the idling propeller on the loop downline takes a little of the efficiency off the elevator. I tend to sent ailerons to give me a scale roll rate and i then add 10% to that setting to give me a little more control. I then have a higher rate set for use if its a bit gusty on a cross wind landing and i need a little more power from the ailerons. That sort of thing.

Once its all reset fly it for 4 or 5 flights before you decide to add more expo or change something as it may take a little while to get used to the new feel of the model.

Im sure the other guys will have their own methods for setting up models but i find that the above works well for me. On the rare occasion i loan a model to someone they often comment on having to really move the controls around but they also comment on how precise the model feels so im pretty sure that means they liked it

Thread: What percentage of pilots fly Mode 1 in the UK?
04/07/2018 12:36:37

Nice history lesson Pete

04/07/2018 10:32:57
Posted by JOHN MOSLEY 2 on 04/07/2018 09:58:08:

Yep power flyer wedge the throttle wide open and only use the rudder on take off,

They must be pretty poor pilots then. I agree with Nigel, rudder is a primary control and anyone i teach is fully versed in how to use it. Certainly i couldnt do without it on any of the models i fly

We are all mode 2 at my club.

Thread: expo for beginners yes or no ?
03/07/2018 14:19:32

I think BEB nailed it. As i said before, I always aim for a model that is responsive but not twitchy.

I do tend to throw my students in at the deep end more than most but they learn faster this way and learn more. If students are wrapped in bubble wrap they will never learn and will pick up bad habits. As for the 'why make it difficult' question, well, it already is. Model flying is not an easy thing to learn so pretending otherwise by 'cheating' their training only sets students up for a fall further down the line, most likely when a far more expensive model is on the line so i would rather give them a more in depth and intensive training than try to make their lives easy.

Obviously changes are made when to suit the student but nothing too major

Thread: Seagull Hurricane
03/07/2018 13:31:54

Sounds good Tim. Im looking forward to seeing this one in the air

Thread: expo for beginners yes or no ?
03/07/2018 13:07:59

I always tell my students to imagine a 5p on top of the control stick and not move the stick beyond the imaginary edges of the 5p. I have the rates set such that the model is responsive but not twitchy. So far in 15 years i have not had anyone yank at the controls such that they made zero progress. Normally they got the feel for it within a short period of time.

Kevin, good to hear you were taught specifically how to use the rudder. I dedicate quite a bit of time to this and even go so far as to disable the ailerons on the buddy box. Its a good way to teach circuit planning as the model is far less responsive and a good way to get used to how the rudder works and its interaction with roll. My current student was cursing my name for quite some time while we did this but when it came to his first cross wind landing, he then understood the method to my apparent madness!

03/07/2018 10:27:01

Geoff, in cases like yours then i can see the advantage and its fair enough, but the op didnt mention anything like that so i am working under the assumption that its not an issue for him.

03/07/2018 09:14:11
Posted by simon barr on 03/07/2018 09:04:32:

I use expo when training, I don't see anything wrong with that.

This is just a hobby and is supposed to be enjoyable, so why force a student to struggle with a model when we have the technology available to make it easier to learn. We are trying to encourage newcomers into the hobby, so we need to help them, not put them off by making them fly a model that is twitchy, when it could be smoothed out for them.

I think you misunderstand. A trainer should not be twitchy in the first place if it is set up correctly. Most trainers are really benign.

While i fully agree that the objective is not to make students lives stupidly difficult its also a mistake to make it really easy for them as, frankly, they wont learn anything. There is also little reward when you get something for free and a bit of a challenge, backed up with clear instruction, gives them a sense of achievement once they have mastered whatever it is. Also when they upgrade to a new model that is likely to be even more sensitive than their trainer, they have to learn to fly all over again without their instructor and that is far more likely to put them off.

03/07/2018 08:53:56
Posted by Kevin 216 on 03/07/2018 08:33:31:

I learned to fly recently and did not use expo on aileron and elevator. However, I found I had a tendency, when advancing the throttle for take-off to feed in a little rudder input. 30% expo on the rudder mitigated the problem and my small stick errors were damped out - result straight take-offs. I still fly in this configuration zero expo on aileron & elevator, 30% on rudder.

As for rates I set them and usually maiden my model on low rates once satisfied all is well I use full rates.

With all respect to Kevin (this is not a personal criticism) this is exactly why you shouldnt use expo when learning. Instead of learning to move the throttle accurately the error is being masked by the expo and by his own admission that state is set to continue, most likely for the rest of the time he is a model pilot.

Its a far better bet to learn to move the sticks accurately in the first place. All of my students do the same with the throttle/rudder interaction so you arent alone in that, but within a handfull of takeoffs and some dedicated rudder training they soon kick the habit.

Rich, i use rates a reasonable amount but in general they are only few % apart. For example my WWII fighters tend to need slightly more elevator movement on landing but that makes them a little too sensitive in normal flight. many of my models only have one setting. When setting rates i work on the basis that if i only need X deflection for a normal flight then X+10% is all i need and that is where i set them. If i feel i need more for landing i set a high rate 10% over that. I never measure any of this, its all done by feel. I totally ignore recommended deflections these days as they are often much too large and they then recommend high expo to counter it. The problem with this is when you get to a certain point on the curve deflection increases very rapidly and makes models very hard to fly. A friend had this with a spitfire. 60% rates and 65% expo. He started at 30% expo, as the manual, but found it too sensitive so added more and more expo. As he was unable to land it he asked me for help and I came down to 30% travel and no expo, after that it was on rails when trying to land.

ESM WWII models were a nightmare for incorrect elevator recommendations and so many crashed because of it. Most people assumed the c/g was wrong but in my experience its just been excessive elevator rate causing the problem.

02/07/2018 23:39:22
Posted by Geoff Sleath on 02/07/2018 22:14:05:
Posted by Jon - Laser Engines on 02/07/2018 20:41:47:

And sorry to disagree Geoff but I would never use rudder mixed with aileron on any model. Its far better to do it manually as the controls are often used in opposition and you don't want them interacting with each other.

I don't use coupled aileron/rudder. I add it in as necessary manually. I just like plenty of movement. You misunderstood what I wrote which is probably my fault for not making it clear.


fair enough, sorry for the misunderstanding

02/07/2018 20:41:47

no expo. Most trainer models are docile enough to not need it and even more exciting models rarely require it if set up correctly.

I use 10% expo on only two of my models. One is my 1/4 stampe biplane and one is a small hand launch thing that zips about at high speed. Both have expo on the ailerons as both are too sensitive around the middle stick. In the case of the stampe, I need high deflection when the speed bleeds off in a roll, this makes level flight twitchy so 10% expo cures it. On the missile, its roll rate is mental at all speeds and that's part of the fun. However its easier to fly 3 inches off the ground with 10% expo on the ailerons.

In general, if you find yourself using less than 75% of the available stick travel during your flight then your rates are probably too high and you should lower those instead of using expo.

Expo is a useful and powerful tool but if used on a trainer it is likely to make you lazy and will mask inaccuracies in the movement of your sticks. When I instruct, loops and rolls are part of what I teach beginners as they are good as a circuit planning exercise and it reveals if the student is moving the stick straight without accidentally mixing the controls. A loop will soon show if they are tugging some aileron in there with the elevator.

And sorry to disagree Geoff but I would never use rudder mixed with aileron on any model. Its far better to do it manually as the controls are often used in opposition and you don't want them interacting with each other.

Thread: Engine cutting
02/07/2018 14:59:33
Posted by Don Fry on 02/07/2018 12:58:50:

John, I can't help thinking you have to be right. My engine is uncowled . I must have a phantom needle twiddler

Not necessarily. Many engines cannot dissipate all the heat they create at full power if the outside temperature is above a certain threshold. While i agree that 30c is not outrageously hot it is slightly unusual for the UK so any engine set up to work in our normal frigid temperatures is likely to protest now its nice and toasty

02/07/2018 10:24:46

I flew Saturday and didnt encounter any issues. The Laser petrol in my pulse and my trusty saito 45 in my nieuport 17 both performed well.

One thing to remember in hot weather is that cooling performance is obviously reduced, so even with correct tuning (tuned for max rpm) you may not be able to push the engine as hard as you normally would before it gets too toasty. The inclusion of the occasional high speed dive with the engine close to idle and reduced full throttle time will do wonders for keeping the engine cool.

Thread: Laser Engines - Technical questions
01/07/2018 09:02:47

Either engine will work well but the 180 will have the performance edge.

I flew a WWXL with one of our 155's and I was pleased/ impressed with the performance. It flew nicely and did not feel under powered with loops from level flight all easily done and reasonable vertical performance.

However, I did feel the need to use all the power it had on several occasions but this depends on flying style as I gave it more of a beating than its owner (Tim?? Where are you???) Anyway, the 180 would give a little more urge without being silly so could be an option. Percy is quite right when he says the 180 is a torque monster but that can be an advantage in an aerobatic model as you can use a big prop and get instant thrust out of it instead of having to 'spool up' a smaller engine. With correct propeller choice this added oomph may not translate into more speed and the only difference would be vertical performance.

The added weight of the 180 may also mean you don't have you use any lead in the front depending on how the WWXL balances.

SO to be honest, either would work fine and it depends on exactly what you are after. Also consider what type of model you will want you use the engine for once the WW bites the dust

Thread: Looking for a new plane need advice
29/06/2018 12:30:01

I would give the acrowot another go. You have already worked out what went wrong so are less likely to make the same mistake again.

If you arent a member of a club already that is a good idea as well. They can offer you training on your acrowot to prevent further mishaps transitioning to the heavier model.

I would strongly recommend joining a club as a model the size of the acrowot is really not suited to the local park.

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