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Will old electric motors ever have the fascination that IC engines do?

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Robin Colbourne26/10/2020 23:42:50
724 forum posts
18 photos

Wow! It looks like I set the cat amongst the pigeons. Thanks for all the replies everyone.

The consensus is pretty much as I expected, 'engines have soul' and we have a passion for them that never will be to the same extent for an electric motor. It would probably be fair to say we all remember and have fonder memories of our first engine than our first electric motor, even if we did have numerous fuel-filled cuts on our fingers by the time we got the little, errr, 'thing' started. The fact that in many cases it wasn't instant gratification, meant the first successful run meant so much more.

Nigel R27/10/2020 06:20:43
4278 forum posts
711 photos

Summed up perfectly here

What's so great about engines

Trevor Crook27/10/2020 08:06:13
1026 forum posts
71 photos

I can understand the appeal of ic motors for collectors and those who enjoy fiddling with them, and they certainly look more interesting. But as someone said earlier, electric is fine if you just want to pull a model around, which is all I want.

I've never really got the noise thing in scale models. If my electric Spitfire were powered by a 4-stroke glow, the sound would replicate that of a Merlin to the same degree, that is nothing like it!

Peter Miller27/10/2020 08:27:21
11593 forum posts
1393 photos
10 articles
Posted by Nigel R on 27/10/2020 06:20:43:

Summed up perfectly here

What's so great about engines

So very, VERY true!! Every word of it.

The ONLY reason that I fly electric powered models now is old age and getting exhausted carrying the extra gear up the hill to the field.

Jonathan M27/10/2020 08:31:24
870 forum posts
335 photos
Posted by Nigel R on 27/10/2020 06:20:43:

Summed up perfectly here

What's so great about engines

Interesting observations.

Although its not directly relevant to the 'fascination' question, one thing I've found personally is that I can fly as much or little as I want with a glow engine no matter how much time I've got available, whereas with electric I typically find that either I'm out of batteries, else wind up having a last flight or two of no real purpose or satisfaction except to 'burn' off unwanted amps... or do this at home on the charger for several hours!

By comparison, cleaning gunk off an IC model only takes a trice and is - curiously - very satisfying indeed!


Edited By Jonathan M on 27/10/2020 08:39:17

J D 827/10/2020 08:48:13
1655 forum posts
83 photos

Some good points in the video Nigel. I had never thought about why my electric aircraft are all about the same size, it is of course for the simplicity of all being on 3s batt's.

My IC aircraft both diesel/glow range from Mills 75 to Laser 150.smiley John.

Trevor27/10/2020 09:19:12
522 forum posts
61 photos

Although I haven't flown with glo or diesel engines since my schoolboy control line days in the 1960s, I do generally agree with the comments made here. However, I thought I'd try to respond to the specific questions posed in the original post:

"Will the Graupner Speed 400 or 600 ever be discussed with the same affection as a Mills 75 or 1.3?"

No, please, no! These 'can' motors were crude, mass produced and not intended for model flying. No surprise then that they were quite unsuited to our needs and are best forgotten.

"Will there be an Oliver Tiger of the wiggly amp brigade? "

Probably not but there are a few candidates for future electric collectors: Some of the specialist engines produced at the end of the brushed era, such as the Astro Flight range from the USA, had real engineering merit. There were also some very nice gearboxes. These specialist items were expensive and produced for a relatively short period so could well end up being collectors' items at some point. As for the current brushless era, I can't see the generic chinese brushless outrunner finding a place on the collectors' shelves but possibly some of the premium offerings from the likes of Hacker just might?

"Will 'brushed motor only' events ever be a thing at Old Warden?"

Only in your worst nightmare!

"Will rumours of a genuine, still-functioning pack of Sanyo SCR nicads spread like wildfire?"

Well, I do have a dozen or more of packs of Sanyo SCR NiCds. . . .. .


Bob Howard31/10/2020 19:53:29
79 forum posts

Many years ago, British Railways (or whatever name they were masquerading under at the time) decided to abandon steam in favour of allegedly clean diesel. They are now going for allegedly cleaner electric locos (where will we be getting so much clean leccy from in years to come).

Visit a heritage railway and just see what attracts all the attention - good old fashioned steam. Why? Because a steam loco is a living, breathing entity with a mechanical heart beating away. Diesels might have some attraction, but soulless electrics - never in a million years.

The same is true for a model aircraft. Having that piston lump beating away on the front brings it to life in a way that no electric motor can ever hope to do.

One of our members flies a spitfire with a 52 four-stroke up front. Recently, a female member of the public stopped to watch and commented on how lovely the model sounded. We have never had any glowing comments about electric models.

I fly some electric purely for the convenience, but I will always prefer the throb of an I/C motor, especially a four stroke.

Paul Marsh31/10/2020 20:03:05
4112 forum posts
1245 photos

I use both, but the electric motor doesn't look nice as this. Don't you agree?

saito82new (1).jpg

CARPERFECT01/11/2020 08:45:27
506 forum posts
9 photos

How anyone can look at an electric motor, and say O, thats a thing of beauty i will never know. So the answer is NO

Peter Miller01/11/2020 08:56:13
11593 forum posts
1393 photos
10 articles

While I agree with you totally, when I look at some of the art that people rave over I think "How can they call that "art!!!" so there are , possibly some people who actually think electric motors are beautiful.

After all, I am reminded of a Lady on "About Anglia" many years ago who had an art exhibition of framed, used babies nappies!!!

Even electric motors arebetter to look at than those so anything is possible!!laugh

cymaz01/11/2020 09:27:26
9459 forum posts
1246 photos

I’m not going down the ic/ electric debate, each to his own.

When it comes to engine sound, how many people look up when the sound of a Radial engine goes over compared to looking at an electric Tesla as it passes.

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