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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Flying the Vagabond from Hacker Model

I programmed several flight modes with different amount of elevator. Normal flying with normal (but still agile) elevator, full elevator position with lots of exponentional to keep the Vagabond controlable and a thermal position with some camber and little elevator mouvement. Despite this, the Vagabond needs an adaptation time. It reminds a very agile plane, without inertia, and very neutral which needs always some attention to pilot. It is possible to fly the Vagabond in small conditions and thermals with it. Now don't expect to do long transition to catch the thermal. I you go through sink air, the plane will show it clearly and loose altitude quickly. At the opposite, I flew the Vagabond in strong and turbulent wind. The structure is flexing in all direction, but the plane remains controlable. Now this is not fun and there is no means to ballast it. No, the best conditions for the Vagabond are a gentle breeze creating a stable lift at the edge. Here everything becomes possible and you enter in a new dimension of the flight. Roll, reversal, looping, flip, inverted flight, knife edge flight, stall roll, all combination of them, plus new manoeuvers that you can create.

We haven't noticed much differences in flight between the light version (not covered and 500g) and the heavy version (610g). This is why I recommend the covered version that will improve the lifetime greatly.
Have an eye on the battery consumption because the 4 servos and big control surfaces drain the battery quickly, and as the plane is addictive and that you cannot stop, you could easily drain all the battery power :)

Finaly, Hacker suceeded to proposed a VTPR plane that requires a short assembly time, with a nice looking and that have the main characteristics of a VTPR plane, bringing lots of fun and joy to its pilot. For me the goal is perfectly achieved even if the purists will find some negative points.

Below are 2 videos made this summer of the vagabond. First one is at le col du Glandon is a strong and turbulent wind. The second one is at le col de Tende in ideal conditions.

Flying the Vagabond from Pierre Rondel on Vimeo.

Enjoying the Vagabond from Pierre Rondel on Vimeo.

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