The Fastest, Lightest, Most Maneuverable R/C Jet Plane
Remote-control jets have never performed particularly well. Their engines are less efficient than exposed propellers at an R/C plane’s speed,...
Remote-control jets have never performed particularly well. Their engines are less efficient than exposed propellers at an R/C plane’s speed, which makes the toys sluggish and difficult to steer, leading to crashes. To compensate for the lack of power, engineers at toy manufacturer Great Planes reduced the weight of their F-86 craft to 2.35 ounces—30 percent lighter than any comparably sized R/C jet. With less mass to maneuver, the F-86 flies faster, turns quicker, and allows pilots to do loops and rolls.
Great Planes shaved weight from nearly every component of the F-86. A specially made lithium-ion battery is only 0.48 ounces. The smaller, stronger engine features electromagnets custom-built with ultrathin copper wire. The wires produce a stronger magnetic field, and therefore more power overall, with less mass. The plane’s custom servos—the attachments that move the wing and tail flaps—are 78 percent lighter. The engineers also improved the plane’s aerodynamics. They mounted the servos completely within the lightweight EPS-foam fuselage, something no other R/C-jet maker has done.
GREAT PLANES F-86
Wingspan 15 inches
Max. speed 43 mph
Motor speed 60,000 rpm
Battery life 4.5 minutes