Conversion of the Aeroworks Extra 260 to Electric Power – P4

Took the Extra to the field last night and ran a couple of batteries through it.  I had fear that it would become much heavier and not fly as well but that is definitely not the case.  The weight is virtually unchanged… added a few ounces at most… and the plane flies very well.  Power from the E-Flite Power 60 with a 16×8 Xoar E prop is unlimited vertical even when the battery falls to 15% of capacity!  I have several batteries but one I highly recommend the current crop of 30C 3300-4000mah Glacier 6S batteries for this setup.  Mounting the battery with the tail end butted right up against the wing tube seems to put the balance point right on or maybe just a smidge toward nose heavy.  The motor, battery and Castle Talon 90 never even get more than warm after a nice 8 minute or so flight.

The best part is that I had to do virtually no trimming as this was based on an existing radio setup.  I think I added (or took out) 1 click of elevator.  If you have this or a similar size bird you want to electrify I highly reccomend this setup.  Here are links to the speed controller, motor and prop I used…

The Glaciers seem to outperform many brands that are 2-3 times as expensive and testing on my bench definitely bears that out so far.  I have borrowed a couple of the higher price packs from a friend (6S 4400s) and will try those as well very soon.

I am amazed how well the plane flies.  For reasons I can’t put my finger on, I think the plane flies better with this configuration than it did with the DLE-20 gas engine.  Maybe it’s the smooth application of power (the DLE has to have a crazy throttle curve to even come close to smooth throttle application) or the lack of noise and vibration.  The other thing I can’t put my finger on is any gas or oil residue on the plane!  Clean up is solely for the purpose of removing bugs and grass from the air frame!

Aside from the cost of batteries and an appropriate charger (but to be fair I will use both to provide power to 2 other airplanes) the conversion to electric I consider to be a huge success and actually less expensive than I expected.

Perhaps the only thing left to address is the need to remove the canopy to connect and disconnect the battery.  With screws holding it on it’s likely going to get a bit tedious.  I am thinking of adapting it to magnets or perhaps some sort of slide latch system.  For now I’ll probably just try to get in a few more flights, get a battery voltage monitor hooked up so I can watch my battery voltage using the on board telemetry and experiment with some different props.  Perhaps a current probe for the telemetry will be added as well to help choose that perfect prop.  There’s always more to learn and experimenting while flying the “E” Aeroworks Extra 260 is going to be a lot of fun.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *