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Acrowot XL safety issue

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Jon - Laser Engines28/10/2019 13:42:43
4898 forum posts
186 photos

I have received a notification from ripmax regarding a safety issue with the current stock of acrowot xl's. Please see below:

Our records indicate that you have recently purchased one or more of these kits from us. It has come to our attention that there is a potential problem with the 3mm aileron pushrods supplied with this kit.

The threads on the pushrod have been rolled undersize and there is a risk that the thread in the clevis does not engage fully. As there is a potential risk of the clevis pulling off the rod, we would ask you to temporarily withdraw the model from sale and alert customers that have recently purchased a kit from you.

We have informed the factory and they are sending out replacement parts. As soon as these are received, we will send these parts free of charge for your customers and any remaining stock you may have.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for assisting in a quick resolution to this problem.

Should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact the Ripmax Office on 020 8282 7500.

If anyone has bought one recently double check all your rods and clevises. I replaced all of the ones on the model i built a year or so ago.

Tim Flyer28/10/2019 14:03:33
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1120 forum posts
214 photos

Interesting..... that has been the case for a few years . The Wots Wot Xl and the Wot 4XL clevises pulled out as well as the Acrowot ones . In fact it’s been my policy to bin all the Ripmax clevises and replace with better quality . The only way they their clevises could ever be used was if they were epoxied to the rod . However I had a number of clevises where the actual pin came out too .

Edited By Tim Flyer on 28/10/2019 14:04:04

Bruce Collinson28/10/2019 14:31:58
410 forum posts

I recall that two pins broke on my Seagull Yak, so those clevises were binned too. It seems to be the case that a lot of the hardware is built down to a price and not up to a standard.

I wish there was an option to buy without hardware at a slightly reduced price but with a shopping list of everything needed. I’d far rather decide my own spec for bearers, tanks, horns etc., particularly with the larger end of the spectrum, c. 70-80 size where there’s a lot more cash and nervous energy in the air. Weakest links and all that.

BTC

Tim Flyer28/10/2019 14:35:12
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1120 forum posts
214 photos

Here is a copy from page 1 of a Wots Wot XL thread from this site from 2016

Posted on 26/02/2016 21:08:07:

The fittings are generally good. I wasn't totally happy with the clevises - the rolled part where the thread is seemed badly formed, and the threads were a bit loose on the pushrods, so I chose to replace them with better quality ones. One of my flying friends almost lost his AcroWot XL recently when a clevis came adrift so I guess I was being ultra cautious about this. I think the control horns will do - we'll see.

It seems nicely made and finished, but the biggest problem was with the tail. The fin and tailplane are 8mm thick, but the pre-cut slots are 9-10mm wide. Bit of messing around to pack them correctly and get the alignment right.

I'll try to get it assembled, weighed and photographed tomorrow.

Brian Hammond28/10/2019 14:48:37
316 forum posts

I replaced the rods and clevises with 3 mm rods and ball joints on my Boler o to be sure.

Frank Skilbeck28/10/2019 16:01:23
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4516 forum posts
101 photos

No recall notice on their website though. How do they know who has bought them?

Bob Cotsford28/10/2019 16:03:42
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8065 forum posts
444 photos
Posted by Tim Flyer on 28/10/2019 14:03:33:

Interesting..... that has been the case for a few years . The Wots Wot Xl and the Wot 4XL clevises pulled out as well as the Acrowot ones . In fact it’s been my policy to bin all the Ripmax clevises and replace with better quality . The only way they their clevises could ever be used was if they were epoxied to the rod . However I had a number of clevises where the actual pin came out too .

Edited By Tim Flyer on 28/10/2019 14:04:04

What Tim said. I'm amazed that they've only just noticed, I bet they've had numerous complaints about them over the years and always replied "well no-one else has complained, it must be a one-off". Maybe someone lost a model and threatened to sue which finally made them take note.

Jon - Laser Engines28/10/2019 16:25:04
4898 forum posts
186 photos
Posted by Frank Skilbeck on 28/10/2019 16:01:23:

No recall notice on their website though. How do they know who has bought them?

They dont. This email was sent to us as we bought one as a trade customer (we will use it as a flying test bench). Thats why it talks about taking them off sale and contacting customers etc.

Frank Skilbeck28/10/2019 17:04:31
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4516 forum posts
101 photos

Jon, thanks I don't have one but a clubmate has (with a Laser 155), I'll let him know.

Paul Marsh28/10/2019 18:49:00
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3741 forum posts
1070 photos

I've had this before with all the 3mm rods with the Wot 4 XL, Extreme, the Wots Wot and Acro Wot XL's. I don't why they supply this rubbish in the kit. I threw mine all away and bought proper branded stuff. Doesn't bear thinking about if one let go...disgust

On an end note: When I bought the Wot 4 Extreme, and as described above, not only the threads pulled out, the pin came out... I phoned Ripmax up and they sent a new set, but still as it's a large model and with an expensive petrol flat twin up front, went and bought known brand items.

Also the fuel tanks with all the Ripmax Chris Foss models have all failed. Pity brassed off, the latest one, where the bung had shrunk, filling the fuselage with fuel on my Wots Wot pro  - ruining it. From now on I will:

  • Bin all clevises;
  • Use Du-Bro type horns;
  • Use Dual Elevator servos on the "XL" range (not use the forked push-rod);
  • not use the supplied tanks and use known reliable items.

 

wotswotxl

Edited By Paul Marsh on 28/10/2019 18:58:51

Andrew Ray28/10/2019 19:27:23
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719 forum posts
19 photos

Good god!!! I emailed them two years ago regarding sub standard fittings including this same issue. And I’m probably not the only one judging by the comments above!

Paul Marsh28/10/2019 19:52:23
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3741 forum posts
1070 photos
Posted by Andrew Ray on 28/10/2019 19:27:23:

Good god!!! I emailed them two years ago regarding sub standard fittings including this same issue. And I’m probably not the only one judging by the comments above!

Probably the older kits were sorted, but fast forward two years, and a new order from Ripmax to the supplier, the (supplier) thought they they could get away with it and probably forgot about it by now and get rid of all the old clevises that were held in the first place.

Old Geezer29/10/2019 08:38:25
640 forum posts

Unfortunately the bean counters have significant input in any business, and the price of best quality fittings versus the cheapest can have a significant effect upon their Bottom Line. The only way the kit importers/wholesalers can deal with such a situation is to be ruthless in their own Quality Control, not relying on the manufacturers' QC dept which in the above case has obviously been the victim of the bean counters/purchasing dept buying cheapest rather than the best value ( there IS a difference!). Ripmax, as the importer/distributor need to take a strong line with their kit manufacturers with regard to poor quality fittings. As customers we have a duty to ourselves to check everything in the box and demand the retailer replace anything not fit for it's purpose as is our right under The Sale Goods Act - or if we really wish to upset the applecart, the entire kit, which I believe would be our right. A stack of returned boxes in the warehouse would soon get an importer/wholesaler's attention - and be rapidly brought to the attention of the manufacturer. As you might guess, I am unashamably, one of 'those' customers - but generally speaking I find that politely drawing a suppliers' attention to deficiencies you ultimately do get what you are paying for - as was my way when I had my own business.

 

Edited By Old Geezer on 29/10/2019 08:39:59

CARPERFECT29/10/2019 11:00:05
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493 forum posts
7 photos

Its not just the Xl models. I have just put an wot4 artf together and while i was putting in the pull pull system for the rudder, as i was taking the slack up on one clevis the other slipped, on inspection all four clivises were too large, i cut them up and binned them, replacing them them my stock

Don Fry29/10/2019 11:13:57
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4141 forum posts
48 photos

Old Geezers attitude is the same as USA modellers. That's why their stuff is better.

Does not always work. The phrase "due to the nature of the hobby" springs to mind. I was once told, returning some defective out of the (sealed) box rubbish, it was sold as seen, and their supplier would not reimburse them, so go away. Would not deal with me after the County Court case. We have been suckers for years.

Jon - Laser Engines29/10/2019 11:56:22
4898 forum posts
186 photos

In fairness to ripmax they are at the mercy of the kit manufacturer. Admittedly they can protest if something is substandard, but unless they check every kit there is a chance the OEM could start putting cheap/out of spec hardware in the boxes once the first run of kits has been inspected or whatever. My AWXL for example had awful covering on it and it should have been stripped and done again. Instead the QC dept ignored it and shipped it anyway. I cant fault ripmax for that.

I discussed this at length with an importer some time ago and they would always try and do the right thing by the customer in the event of a QC issue. However very often the factory just wasnt interested so it came out of their own pocket.

To be honest, i would rather these kits came with little/no hardware at all. They can then knock a tenner off the price and i will buy my own stuff locally. It would save problems like this and would save a great deal of wastage when you think of the resources involved in making something just for us to throw away. It would also help brands like radioactive, slec, great planes etc keep producing good quality accessories as well as improving safety as models wont fall apart in flight.

Don Fry29/10/2019 13:57:06
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4141 forum posts
48 photos

Check one box in 10? Importer has no power in contract to make them interested. Or just not pay for the cost of sorting a customer out, so the factory pays.

Its been there for 50 years. No changes. As someone suggested further up the thread, there is court case and damages somewhere.. and on big stuff like these, that's more likely to be expensive. Hence the interest now.

Tim Flyer29/10/2019 18:08:36
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1120 forum posts
214 photos

The easy spot on the naff OED clevises is that they don’t have and thread size marking stamped on the side . The far better after market ones I buy are stamped “M2’” or M3” and that helps prevent we accidentally using the rubbish kit ones if they accidentally get mixed up whilst assembling.

Edited By Tim Flyer on 29/10/2019 18:09:08

Don Fry29/10/2019 18:34:58
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4141 forum posts
48 photos

Which is great, until the rolled male thread supplied on the rods is undersize. As Jon and others say, it's almost cheaper not to bother to supply.

Trouble is, some kits are OK. Some are not. And it needs instruments to tell the difference. And it's not worth the expense to buy instruments if the only reason is to check you have what you have already paid for.

CARPERFECT30/10/2019 17:56:33
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493 forum posts
7 photos

The males were rolled the correct size on mine, but the female clivises were too big

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