Above: The author’s Futaba
10J is sporting its new
Ninja Wrap! What a difference!
Left: The author’s Futaba 10J
after it was cleaned and right
before he wrapped it.
The R2 Buffer Circuit 50F from DemonAero.
Flying season spruce up
It’s been a busy few weeks for me. With spring well underway and summer just around the corner (well, it was when I wrote this), I’ve been preparing my fleet for the season. I’m finally getting to play
outside a little more and try out all of the projects I’ve been working on
for the past few months.
I’ve also come across several cool products and want to share some of
them with you.
Transmitter Face Lift
My transmitters have a hard life! Despite my best efforts, it doesn’t
take long for them to start showing signs of use and abuse. My
Futaba 10J transmitter has come off the worst so far. I use it to fly
my helicopters and for Pylon Racing. It usually gets a good dose of
nitro fuel on it, which inevitably results in some of the switch labels
rubbing off. There isn’t much I can do about it, or so I thought!
I recently learned about a couple of “ninjas,” Joe and
Travis Reyes, who had the novel idea of producing decal
wraps for transmitters under the name Ninja Wraps. I
contacted Joe about an idea for my Futaba 10J, and he helped
me come up with a design.
I’m a sucker for digital camouflage, and wanted somewhat of a naval
theme for my 10J. I looked online for possible designs (there is a great
photo of an F/A- 18 Hornet in blue digital camouflage on the Internet), and emailed
Joe some samples of what I wanted. Joe then quickly turned around a design, which
we tweaked a couple of times, and I was set!
My decals arrived on a single sheet, already cut and weeded of any excess vinyl.
It was simply a matter of peeling and sticking. Before I got started, I cleaned my
transmitter using denatured alcohol to make sure that there was no oily residue left
behind from the nitro fuel. The vinyl bonds tighter to a clean surface!
The decals easily conformed to curved surfaces with help from my finger. It took
approximately 10 minutes to “sticker up” the transmitter, and I couldn’t be happier
with the results.
If digital camouflage isn’t your thing, not to worry! Joe will work with you and
get you the design for which you are looking. Judging from all
of the transmitter photos online, it looks as though the idea is
starting to catch on! Check out Team Ninja on Facebook or
the website listed in “Sources.”
When it comes to powering a helicopter’s electronics, some
pilots like to use a separate receiver battery independent of the
main flight battery. Others choose to forgo the receiver battery
and opt for a BEC that taps into the flight battery to power
The advantage to using a separate receiver battery is that if
anything happens to your flight batteries resulting in a loss of
power, you can autogyro your heli down safely because you
still have power from the receiver battery. The disadvantage is
that the second battery adds weight.
The advantage to using a BEC that is
either built into your ESC or a separate,
dedicated BEC (such as the Castle
Creations BEC Pro), is that you add little
to no weight to the helicopter. There
is also the fact that you don’t have yet
another battery to charge and look after.
The disadvantage is that if you lose
power from your flight batteries (did you
ignore your flight timer again?), when
105 Model Aviation JULY 2015 www.ModelAviation.com