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RCM&E Dec 2018 - Ruckus Review Update

Mikes Personal Tweaks

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Mike Freeman24/11/2018 14:41:01
87 forum posts
65 photos

I've been enjoying flying the Max Thrust Ruckus since I wrote my review in the Summer and I've ironed out a few wrinkles I raised which I thought I would share....

The first thing I did was ditch the dead weight in the nose. I cut the two lumps of steel out with a long bladed knife - one of those with the break off sections.mod 01.jpg

mod 02.jpg

That's 128.3g saved!! Next I made up a removable battery plate so my 3S 2200mAh packs could be pushed right forward. The plate simply slides into the slotted cheeks which are glued to the sides of the fuz. The plate is spaced off the bottom of the fuz so the ESC and Rx can be located underneath and the LiPo pack is kept well away from those protruding wing bolts! I scrapped the fiddly velcro straps but put a longer, double sided velcro strap through one set of slots so the battery and plate are still held firmly to the fuselage structure.

mod 03.jpg

mod 04.jpg

mod 05.jpg

mod 06.jpg

There isn't a lot of space for the extension leads - they were always getting in the way whilst swapping LiPo's so I cut a recess in the tops of the wings which, fortuitously, revealed a handy void to stuff the loose wires into. This is a none structural part of the wing so the models strength isn't compromised.

mod 07.jpg

mod 08.jpg

Finally, I added a pilot and made a set of carbon fibre u/c legs using the mould idea in my article in the 2015 RCM&E Autumn Special. I also added some wheel spats to keep the muck off the bottom of the wings.

mod 09.jpg

mod 10.jpg

Final all up weight with my 3S 2200 mAh pack on board = 1.64kg. That's 80g (2.8oz) lighter than the original.

Edited By Mike Freeman on 24/11/2018 14:45:50

Geoff S24/11/2018 15:27:07
3578 forum posts
14 photos

The Ruckus is a close relative of the Riot (or Devil) and uses some of the same parts (I guess motor, esc, wing) so I'm not surprised about those lumps of steel. There's a lump of steel in the front of the Riot, too, which is best removed for more 'agile' performance.

I was seriously considering buying one as a bare airframe (I really like my Riot as a warm-up model for all flyable weather) and fit my own choice of servos, motor, esc etc. In the end I bought an ARTF Wot4 Mk2 for about the same money and used equipment I already had. I've not regretted it so far.

I do like your very neat battery installation mod as well as the carbon undercarriage. I always felt it looked very odd with the wheels so far in front of the wing's l/e. I think those legs are also from the Riot, too. It is surprising it doesn't have a tendency to ground loop. I think, like how a bicycle steers well, it's a mystery to most of us what makes ground handling work without drama.


Ray Pinchin20/12/2018 12:45:25
8 forum posts
3 photos

Interesting mods. I like the idea of the recess in the wings but I am a bit reluctant to start hacking and damaging the wing. Could you give some dimentions of the cutout?

Incidently I have a RUCKUS and have found no problems with the undercarriage position. I also us a 4S 2200mAh LiPo with the supplied prop but set throttle endpoint on the transmitter to around 80% to limit the current.

Mike Freeman20/12/2018 17:08:37
87 forum posts
65 photos

Hi Ray,

Here are the dimensions of the recess in the wings. Just the left wing is shown, the right wing is mirror image.

ruckus wing mods.jpg

Regarding the u/c, I also found the original worked fine, no hint of ground looping. I swapped it because I wanted to save some weight so I could add some wheel spats as the underside of the wings were getting covered in grass cuttings and mud!!

Hope this helps!



Chris Leggate27/12/2018 15:34:29
1 forum posts
1 photos

Hi - got one for Christmas. I agree about the pilot so here.s my solution, although my granddaughter was a bit upset when she found the remains in the bin!

Tim Ballinger27/12/2018 16:48:42
778 forum posts
283 photos

Mike, u/c and spats look great. Did you make the spats as well?


Mike Freeman27/12/2018 21:20:58
87 forum posts
65 photos

Hi Tim,

The wheel spats were commercial items - I've been trying to remember where I got them from but have failed - sorry!

They are approx 150mm long x 45mm high x 35mm wide. The opening for the wheel is approx 60mm x 25mm.

Happy New Year All!

jeffrey cottrell15/08/2019 21:35:58
71 forum posts
6 photos

Hi Guys, could use a little help.
Here's the deal:
Treated myself to a Ruckus. Not exactly cheap at £159, but I've recently moved house and yet to get my building facilities set up, and I needed something quick.
Had three flights so far, and it's been a major disappointment.
I'm using a 3s 3000 pack with the front end hard against the bulkhead.First flight was like flying a blancmange. Very sloppy and unresponsive to the controls. i did manage a roll of sorts, but it was close to falling out the sky.
Sure sign of c/g too far forward.
So, scalpel please, nurse.
Out came the steel weights behind the cowl. (thanks Mike, for that tip)
Results were an improvement, but still had no 'sparkle' and roll rate was still slow.
Measured the c/g and it was just behind the forward point, 80mm, so there is scope to move it back a bit if you think that would help.
Meanwhile a couple of other issues have become apparent.
First is a lack of thrust. In any sort of headwind it needs almost full throttle to maintain any forward motion.
Second is at full throttle it wants to climb like a homesick angel.
So thrust.
The specs say it comes with a 12 x 6 prop. Mine came with an 11 x 5.5, but this was a specific electric prop, which I thought would make up for the smaller size by being more efficient. Doesn't seem so.
Quick root through my spare props I came up with 11 x 7 and 11 x 8.5, both APC, and a 12 x 6 Bone prop from HK.
Which would be my best choice?
As regards climbing under throttle, I am using FlySky gear, and the trims do move in tiny stages, but even then I had to have all available down trim and a touch of forward stick as well to get it to fly straight.
Could well be a c/g issue as well, or possibly thrustline. What's the best way to find out which?

Any thoughts?


Mike Freeman15/08/2019 23:15:30
87 forum posts
65 photos

Hi Jeff,

Sorry to hear you are having troubles with your Ruckus.

I think your 3000mAh packs may be too heavy. I find the best CG location is 105mm back from the LE - a lot more than your 80mm!! I found a bit of differential on the ailerons helped the roll rate too. Here is the relevant bit from my review.....

Over the next few flights I tweaked the set up to suit a more aerobatic flying style. I swapped the Rx for a 6-channel version and assigned each wing servo to a separate channel so I could introduce a little differential. I finally settled on a CG location of 105mm from the leading edge (just behind the recommended maximum) and surface throws of:

Aileron 25mm up & 20mm down

Elevator 15mm each way

Rudder 35mm each way

With these settings and 20% expo dialled in I had the best of both worlds: Nice easy flying around neutral yet more exciting aerobatics with the sticks in the corners. All this and STILL that insanely slow flying speed is possible – amazing! The greater throws improved the aerobatic performance enormously with snappier rolls and super tight loops easily achieved.

The rearward CG makes the Ruckus almost pitch neutral which means it stays in a dive when the nose is pushed forward, there is just a gentle recovery to level flight when the sticks are released. Moving the CG any further back causes the Ruckus to stay in a dive or even tuck under which some may find disconcerting. Inverted flight requires only an occasional dab of forward pressure to hold level flight and inverted loops are no problem (as long as the LiPo pack is well strapped in!)

I recon you'd benefit from shifting the CG further back which should help reduce the power zoom you mention. I think I added a bit of down thrust and right thrust to mine after a while but I don't recall it being too far out out of the box.

Also, the 11x5.5 prop is more suitable for a 4S set up. A 3S pack needs a 12x6 for the best results.

I hope that helps and gets your Ruckus behaving properly. I'm still enjoying mine - a 3S 2200mAh pack and a 12x6 are just right for sports aerobatics - it won't quite climb vertical but does OK. Maybe the name makes us expect too much but, for a sports aerobatic Hack it does pretty well!



Frank Skilbeck16/08/2019 08:29:51
4668 forum posts
101 photos

Jeff, re the prop, yes an electric prop is more efficient, but that doesn't necessarily mean more thrust, just less amps to develop the same thrust.

A club mate got one of these as his first low winger and I test flew it for him, I thought it flew fine, but managed to lose the canopy when doing a bunt..............

Ray Pinchin16/08/2019 10:54:26
8 forum posts
3 photos

p1010309.jpgp1010308.jpgI've had around 80 flights with my Ruckus and am happy with the performance. Changed 3S for 4S 2200 which vastly improved the model's vertical performance. Used 6 channel Rx with aileron differential and expo. Increased the aileron throw for faster rolls and changed wheel bolts to 4mm. Canopy fell off doing bunt so added a pair of 10 x 2mm magnets,problem solved. Also added 1/5 scale pilot to the office. CG midway between points suggested in manual.



Edited By Ray Pinchin on 16/08/2019 11:03:14

Capt Kremen16/08/2019 12:01:43
349 forum posts
134 photos

As per my experiences, (see review section), the 'Ruckus' out-of-the-box is a BASIS for a general hack/sports model, as others have found. Quality of items as supplied, (U/C, axles, clevis, snakes, motor, ESC, prop, spinner, canopy retention and placement of these etc. etc.), can be very subjective and change a mediocre / 'duff'(?) model into a joy to own and fly. Like most, if not all ARTF, creations from the far east, IMHO they are made down-to-a-price, not necessarily up to the quality seasoned model builder/assemblers would prefer. Although much of the 'Ruckus' shares common parts with the 'Riot', I still find my 'Riot' the better of the two aircraft. Several 'Riots' have appeared in my club and are flown by a range of pilots, from relative inexperienced to 'hooligan/chuck it about' merchants! Each to their own. Enjoy!

Shaun Walsh16/08/2019 12:55:39
298 forum posts
49 photos

Fit a 3541-1070 motor from 4-max. I put one in my Riot it draws 37amps on a 12x6 and it will climb vertically on a 3s. Fits on original motor mount and is the correct dimensions for the cowl.

jeffrey cottrell16/08/2019 14:36:32
71 forum posts
6 photos

Hi Guys, thanks for your thoughts and ideas.

So far, I've switched to a 12 x 6 and wound up the aileron throws.Need to see how that goes before I try anything else.
If someone could arrange for a dry, calm day, that would be great.


Mike Freeman18/08/2019 12:42:29
87 forum posts
65 photos

Hi Jeff

I was out flying my Ruckus this morning, trying to blow the canopy off like you and Frank have experienced. I tried bunts and dives and flick rolls all to no avail...... but good fun nonetheless!!

Just a thought..... did you add the extra air outlet hole as recommended by CenturyUK? See here



jeffrey cottrell18/08/2019 15:59:31
71 forum posts
6 photos

Hi Mike, thanks

My model must be later off the production line, because it already has those air vents behind the wing.
Also, I have yet to have the canopy blow off (chance would be a fine thing).
What I did notice while putting it together was the magnet fitted to the canopy had not been glued in properly. End result was the canopy would come off easily, leaving the magnet attached to the one in the fuz.
I re-fitted the magnet with a smear of epoxy and it's held fast so far.
My main feeling is frustration.
Just come back from a long drive to the field, only to find it was blowing a gale. Took 4 models with me and wouldn't risk flying any of them.
Ho hum.
Managed to get another scrape on the fuz, and at some stage I must have snagged one of the ailerons and broke the clevis.
So far I'm doing more damage getting it in and out of the car than I ever have flying it.
Not how it's supposed to be.
In with my kit there was a pack of spare clevises, look to be stronger than the originals.
Wonder whether Century know something we don't!
Still deciding whether to just fit a new one or change to all metal both sides.
Jury out on that one.
End result is I have not even been able to test with the new prop and aileron throws, let alone come to any conclusions as to what to do next.
Not sure where you fly, but if you could send some of your flying weather down my way, I would be grateful.
Also, thanks for the message about your original review.
I was hoping it would be on the forum somewhere. Seems I can't access RCM&E archives without a subscription which I don't have.
Anyway, no matter.



Shaun Walsh18/08/2019 16:29:45
298 forum posts
49 photos

So if the Riot is supposed to be a high wing trainer, the Ruckus is low wing and more aerobatic I look forward to a full blown 3d model from max thrust, they will probably call it the Kerfuffle or the Minor Altercation.

jeffrey cottrell18/08/2019 16:51:51
71 forum posts
6 photos

Hi Shaun

Right with you on that. Thinking of getting some vynils to change mine from Ruckus to Small Skirmish.

There are three Riots in my club and they all fly better, and are more aerobatic, than my Ruckus. Have to say I have only managed three flights with mine so far, so can't say it's fully developed, but I'm really not impressed.

Only good point to my abortive trip to the field earlier is this weekend is the Eastbourne air display. Sitting in the car I was treated to the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight doing a low pass across the field.

Six Merlins in formation, heaven.


Shaun Walsh18/08/2019 17:10:17
298 forum posts
49 photos
Posted by jeffrey cottrell on 18/08/2019 16:51:51:

Hi Shaun

Right with you on that. Thinking of getting some vynils to change mine from Ruckus to Small Skirmish.

There are three Riots in my club and they all fly better, and are more aerobatic, than my Ruckus. Have to say I have only managed three flights with mine so far, so can't say it's fully developed, but I'm really not impressed.

Only good point to my abortive trip to the field earlier is this weekend is the Eastbourne air display. Sitting in the car I was treated to the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight doing a low pass across the field.

Six Merlins in formation, heaven.


I must admit that I am quite pleased with the Riot, especially since I put the more powerful motor in it. Next thing I need to do is remove some or all of the steel nose weight to get it to do flatter spins, at the moment it spins in a very much nose down attitude and you need full rudder and aileron to get it to do much at all.

Edited By Shaun Walsh on 18/08/2019 17:12:43

jeffrey cottrell20/08/2019 14:55:03
71 forum posts
6 photos

Hi Guys

Oh dear, oh dear, seems the weather gods have decided the fate of my Ruckus.
So, wind relented a little. Still breezy but nowhere near the gales of recent days.
Out to the field for a play.Thrust was obviously better with the larger prop, and roll rate was improved though still not 'twinkly'.
Climb on full power was still there, as was a twitchiness in any sort of wind gusts. Almost impossible to fly a steady line.
Did a couple of loops and rolls, but mostly stooged around for a while. Tried a few test approaches which were not comfortable in the wind.
Finally got it set up in a straight approach, just about to touch down and a sudden gust caught one wing, flipped it on its side and cartwheeled into the rough grass.
Haven't checked everything yet, but most apparent was the fuz broke in half just in front of the leading edge.
Ho hum.
Electrics still working ok, and new fuz can be bought, but I'm inclined to leave it for the moment. Not sure it will ever be comfortable for me.
I know these incidents are part and parcel of what we do, but I wish I could have got more value from it before it went in.

We'll see


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