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Post  ian1954 on Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:11 am

I recently saw a few postings from Dins circulating around Cox RC electric aeroplanes.

That then prompted me to look at the various RC electric offerings and then came across Cox Electric Control Line aircraft.

I have search the site but see so references to the Electric Control Line aircraft produced in the 70's. These were referred to as "Electro Chargers"

There appears to be a couple of Spitfires (one miltary colour scheme and one racing colour scheme), a Bearcat and a Fireball (P51 ish).

Is anyone familiar with these?
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Post  anm2 on Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:27 pm

ian1954 wrote:I recently saw a few postings from Dins circulating around Cox RC electric aeroplanes.

That then prompted me to look at the various RC electric offerings and then came across Cox Electric Control Line aircraft.

I have search the site but see so references to the Electric Control Line aircraft produced in the 70's. These were referred to as "Electro Chargers"

There appears to be a couple of Spitfires (one miltary colour scheme and one racing colour scheme), a Bearcat and a Fireball (P51 ish).

Is anyone familiar with these?
I have looked over the bearcat. I have never seen it fly, but I have seen the set up, and held the plane. What is the question? Perhaps I can answer. Andy
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Post  ian1954 on Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:39 pm

I am wondering how well they fly or how good they are. This site has many collectors of the Cox aeroplanes but I have never seen the Electro Chargers mentioned in any topic.

I know they were available in around 1976 and they occasionally appear on Fleabay quit cheaply.
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Post  microflitedude on Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:26 pm

My guess is a battery powered airplane from the 70's would be rather lethargic at best.
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Post  anm2 on Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:32 pm

ian1954 wrote:I am wondering how well they fly or how good they are. This site has many collectors of the Cox aeroplanes but I have never seen the Electro Chargers mentioned in any topic.

I know they were available in around 1976 and they occasionally appear on Fleabay quit cheaply.

The Cox Bearcat that I saw came in a box, which you can see on Martin Hepperlees website.  It is model # 9501.  It says it was made in 1996, which is when I believe it was purchased.   The model belonged to my brother, and he bought it for his daughter, who showed it to me and remarked that they were never able to make it fly.  I remember thinking it was very small, and the control wire was heavy.  It did not look like something that would fly well.  I see my brother often.  Next time I am there I will take a closer look.  Andy
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Post  Ken Cook on Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:10 pm

I did indeed have one of these. It was one of the neatest toys I owned. For one, it worked and it worked quite well. Having enough money for just fuel back then for me was problematic. This took all that out of the picture and mine worked excellent. I believe mine was a Piper or Cessna. I do remember it had a trike gear. You didn't need a second person to go fly. The plane was turned on by moving the handle and the bellcrank turned on the switch. You placed the plane on a lantern battery. The plane had two holes in which the springs from the battery contacted the metal strips within the plane charging the plane's battery. They were plentiful back then due to most households having them for flashlights. The plane's flytime was a bit short however and battery life wasn't long. Even my father was quite shocked at how well the plane flew. I wasn't really flying any maneuvers back then so I can't comment on that end but I don't think anything outside of a large loop was possible. For me, it was a toy that worked as promised and that alone was a feat back then. This was a time when toy manufacturers were just completely in competition with each other. I think it was Mattel who just came out with the most famous toy of all times, Mattel electronic football which dominated any toy I ever recalled. While I was turning in circles, the majority was glued to this new founded hand held red digital beeping screen. Ken
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Post  ama353 on Fri Aug 09, 2013 3:37 pm

The Bearcat was indeed kinda fun ... it managed to hang out on rather short lines (15 to 18 feet as I recall), but with the "throttle" (switch) doing a touch and go was easy, and you could simply put it down if you started to get dizzy.

I had fun with a set of decals for the Diels Engineering 1/24 scale F8F Bearcat and some blue "Fusion" paint for plastics.

All in all, I'd have to say it was a much better flyer than this old-timer expected.  And there was plenty of power ...

Dennis

Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Bearca10
Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Bearca11
Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Bearca12
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Post  ian1954 on Fri Aug 09, 2013 4:46 pm

Thank ypu all for the replies. I succumbed to temptation and made an offer on a Spitfire. I expect the batteries are beyond hope and it with need some TLC to get it flying but you never know!
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Post  sdjjadk on Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:05 pm

Didn't they use an external battery to load a capacitor in those old Cox electric planes?
I had one when I was a young kid and I remember having to hold a (I think a 6v battery?) on some contacts under the fuse for bit before I could fly.

Shawn
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Post  ama353 on Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:56 pm

The Bearcat is more sophisticated than that. The flying lines are actually (insulated) copper wires, and a NiCd battery pack (placed in a plastic holder that clips to your belt) powers it. If you have a good battery pack, the flying time is longer than you might expect.

The control handle includes a switch, hence the ability to easily turn power off and on.

Dennis
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Post  ian1954 on Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:39 am

I haven't a clue what the Spitfire will be like, I am buying it "blind" from a non Cox chappy. He answered all my questions but all I know is that is is the camouflage version of the Spitfire and it is a Cox.

I will wait and see.
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Post  batjac on Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:22 pm

I too took a chance on a Spitfire off of eBay after reading this thread. I'll look forward to adding it to the project queue.  If it's only got 15-18 feet lines, maybe I can fly it in my cul-de-sac in the mornings when everybody's gone to work.

The Queue'd Up Mark
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Post  ian1954 on Mon Aug 12, 2013 3:40 pm

Here it is. It is one of those that used a 6 volt lantern battery to charge it up and there is a switch on the side.

Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Cox_sp10

Now to work out how to take it to bits - it looks glued together.
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Post  sdjjadk on Mon Aug 12, 2013 5:12 pm

ian1954 wrote:Here it is. It is one of those that used a 6 volt lantern battery to charge it up and there is a switch on the side.

Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Cox_sp10

Now to work out how to take it to bits - it looks glued together.
That's that one I had. What a memory flashback!

Shawn
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Post  kevbo on Mon Aug 12, 2013 6:09 pm

I had one of those. (spitfire in military trim as pictured) It flew, but barely. Lantern batteries were not all that cheap. I don't recall what killed it. Maybe the nicads went TU. IIRC they were a non-standard size. I think I might still have the motor and prop from it. We lived in Denver so the thin air didn't hurt the electric, but the prop and wings still needed more speed and power at altitude.

Super Capacitors would not arrive for a decade or so after these were sold. Pretty sure they used nicads. I think only the internal resistance of the lantern battery limited the charge rated, and I think you were expected to time the charge. Pretty easy to overcharge them.
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Post  ian1954 on Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:46 pm

Splitting it to examine the inside wasn't that easy. I had to use a razor saw and move carefully, it took a while but finally I got to the innards.

The connections are badly corroded and the battery is deader than the Dodo.

The motor works but I find the battery confusing. It looks like two nicads bound in series which would only give a nominal voltage of 2.4 volts.

A 6 volt battery was used to charge it up but the charge time was only 2 to 3 minutes!

Cox Electric Control line Aeroplanes Cox_sp11
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Post  kevbo on Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:12 pm

Lantern batteries were 4 zinc batteries in series., this yields fairly high internal resistance limiting the charge current.

Don't substitute alkaline or god forbid Nicads. Internal resistance is why you need a #6 dry cell to light a glow plug, but a C size Nicad will do the job nicely.
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Post  John Goddard on Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:01 pm

Dunno if you ever got anywhere with this Ian but praps get on Hobby King site and
have a look at their LiFe single cells which would give that a bit of extra 'go' or
even drop it down with a resistor.
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Post  craig bernard on Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:18 pm

I was just wondering if ian ever got the electric charger spitfire going.its a cool looking plane if it worked might look at one myself.dont want to waste money if its not that great!
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Post  John Goddard on Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:35 pm

If you can get one Craig you should.
The battery technology has come on so far in the last 3 years I'm astounded
that non of the boys with their 'planes on string' have dipped their toes in.
 Airplane
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Post  Mark Boesen on Thu Dec 12, 2013 5:18 pm

You could look at Hobby King for a small brushes motor and a small lipo battery?
I'm not sure what a U/C electronic speed control would run, but you'd want a way to power up and shut down.


Last edited by Mark Boesen on Thu Dec 12, 2013 5:31 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post  batjac on Thu Dec 12, 2013 5:30 pm

I bought one of these Spitfires on eBay a few of months ago.  Unfortunately, the seller didn't disclose that the right stab was broken off and held in place with scotch tape.  I'll figure out a light weight way to fix it, but it's low on the project list for now.  I figured I'd just pull the stock motor and batteries and replace them with a park flyer rig from Value Hobby or Hobby King.  I'd probably break down and buy one of those electric C/L timer/speed controls for it.  10# test Spectra would be my choice of line for this. I'm also figuring I'll leave off the landing gear, as I'll probably fly it over the grass at the local ball field.

The Deceived Mark
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Post  Mark Boesen on Thu Dec 12, 2013 5:39 pm

I think I would be a really cool project and with modern equipment fly totally different, probably add 3'-5' to the line length. It would be interesting to do a before and after of: weight, rpm, lap times, etc.

A bottle of foam friendly CA is almost a must to have in the shop for foam repair.
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Post  batjac on Thu Dec 12, 2013 5:53 pm

Mark Boesen wrote:I think I would be a really cool project and with modern equipment fly totally different, probably add 3'-5' to the line length. It would be interesting to do a before and after of: weight, rpm, lap times, etc.

A bottle of foam friendly CA is almost a must to have in the shop for foam repair.

I have a bottle of Bob Smith Industries Foam-Cure EPP foam glue that I've not opened up yet.  Think that's safe to try?  I have nothing I can test it on, as there's not scrap on the plane to try.

The Trepidatious Mark
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Post  craig bernard on Thu Dec 12, 2013 7:11 pm

i took my solar light batteries out for the winter these were the type for fence post they looked same size as the ones you showed in the cut open spitfire they were also marked 1.2 volts on them.you were thinking it was a 2.4 volt system in the original.maybe they make a more expensive ones because im sure there probably cheap.I think it would be good if you could fined ones to fit in original compartment!i like keeping things original
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