The GPS is separate from the receiver and
sits near the midpoint of the fuselage.
To activate calibration mode, pull down
and center on the two sticks.
A series of
10 pivots are
GPS on the
There is an optional camera mount
that adheres on top of the wing,
designed for the E-flite 720 HD
video camera (EFLA801) that can be
Assembling the Sportsman S+ from
Horizon Hobby was quick and easy.
Much of the aircraft was preassembled
with decals out of the box. In a few
steps, I installed the main landing gear,
added the horizontal stabilizer, and
attached the preassembled main wing.
The manual includes plenty of clearly
I was pleased to see that the LiPo
battery charger included adapters to
charge it either in the car or by using
an AC outlet. Charge time ranges from
30 to 60 minutes, so I recommend
purchasing an extra battery or two,
which can easily be found for less
than $30. There is enough room to
fit a larger battery in the fuselage, but
ideally you should stick with a 3S
1,300 mAh LiPo because the added
weight could adversely affect SAFE+ or
the center of gravity.
Setting Up GPS Functionality
Before flying the Sportsman S+, I
spent quite a bit of time reading the
manual. Don’t assume that you can
simply take off and everything will
magically work. There are important
steps required to activate the GPS-enabled SAFE+ technology.
Each time the Sportsman S+ is
powered on, the flier needs to
wait roughly 10 to 60 seconds
until the aircraft locks down its
GPS coordinates. During this
process, the receiver and radio
remain bound, but the aircraft is
programmed to remain idle.
The first few times I powered
on the Sportsman S+, it seemed as
though either the transmitter or
receiver was not communicating.
I even tried to bind different
transmitters to the aircraft,
hoping to resolve what I thought
was a communication problem.
Eventually I learned that I simply
needed to patiently wait until the GPS
was locked before I could conduct a
Ten to 60 seconds doesn’t sound like
a long time, but for eager pilots, it may
seem like an eternity. The wait is worth
the gained functionality.
After the GPS is locked, the
Sportsman S+ will wake up. At this
point, the pilot should calibrate the GPS.
This isn’t required for every flight, but
56 Model Aviation SEP TEMBER 2015 www.ModelAviation.com