Read part 1 of the Review here
Adjusting the C.G.
The most critical part of flying a plane is the centre of gravity. If you centre of gravity is as little as 3mm off your plane can nose dive on takeoff, or be wildly sensitive to pitch inputs if you put it too far back. This is exaggerated even more on a wing as there is no tail surface. The RaceWing has a reasonable large C.G. envelope for a plane this size, at 130-135mm from the front of the aircraft. What really stood out to us was the system that you can use to move the wings backwards and forwards. This means you don’t have to worry about adding nose/ tail weight to make the centre of gravity correct; you can simply slide the central pod forwards and backwards. In addition, for smaller adjustments you can move the motor forwards and backwards.
The part we were most concerned when we received the MiniRaceWing was the launch. We have tried flying wings twice in the past and both ended in disaster. The first was an FT VersaWing, which nosedived after launch and was destroyed in the resulting crash. The second was a HK Bonsai which met the same fate. Thankfully there was a short section in the manual dedicated to launching the wing, the instruction was to launch at 30 degrees with full throttle. We stayed true the manual and gave it our best shot; and were impressed when it launched right out of our hands dead level and with no need for corrections. As soon as it got up into the sky the speed of the wing was apparent and it immediately sped up to a 35-40mph cruise at 30% throttle. Given 30% throttle is pulling roughly 3-4A, this is reasonable efficient cruise at that speed. You would expect with what is essentially a wind block in the centre of the wing it would be rather inefficient, so we were pleasantly surprised.
The wing was more than happy to just sit at this low cruising speed and zip around all day; it cut lines through the sky and tracked very well for a wing this size. Turns were co-ordinated and precise, given the lack of rudder. We knew the wing could do more though and were keen to test it further. When we poured on the coals it was quick to accelerate, although there was some wing waggle at high speeds. When we maidened the wing, there was 0 wind. However on subsequent flights we have noticed that it does get bashed around by the wind quite a bit. Unfortunately this is the nature of smaller wings, so it’s much better to fly this wing when it is as calm as possible.
As the name suggests this wing is designed for racing. So we don’t think this is a good plane to recommend to someone who flies quads and wants to move to fixed wing flying. The plane itself is designed for performance, and we can imagine a new pilot being overwhelmed by the responsiveness of the controls. Instead it is probably better suited to someone who has flown fixed wing in the past, but moved to quads, and now wants to dip their toes in fixed wing again. For newer pilots it’s probably better wised to get a trainer, and then move onto the Mini RaceWing.
The wing mounting system is, in our opinion, the best part of the whole wing. It has worked perfectly in our experience and has detached when intended yet sturdy enough for flight. In our harder landings the wings just split apart as intend and as a result they don’t have a single dent in them, despite multiple hard landings.
We are very impressed by the Mini RaceWing. There has clearly been some thought put into it and the result is a well performing wing that is superbly designed and is of high quality. The price is steep at €149.99, but you get what you pay for. We expect this wing to survive many crashes and we believe it is worth the high price tag if you intend on racing this wing every weekend as your main wing. The speed envelope and manoeuvrability, even at low speeds, make this wing a very respectable product from FlyBot.
Thanks to FlyBot for sending us the Mini RaceWing for review, you can purchase the wing here.