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Pilot’s Choice Product Review Photos provided by Jon Barnes


Freewing F-105 Thunderchief


64mm EDF Jet Jet excitement at a wallet-friendly price


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The F-105, nicknamed the Thud by its crews, was a supersonic fighter/bomber capable of achieving Mach 2 speeds. Both the F-8 and F-105 harken to the 1950s as Cold War-era jets, and both aircraft qualify as lesser-modeled subjects.


The EPO-foam airframe comes out of the box prepainted in a silver scheme, with a nice quality set of preapplied U.S. Air Force graphics. The Native American nose art and the insignia adorning the green-striped vertical stabilizer identify this Thud as a member of the 4th Fighter Wing, 335th


Tactical Fighter


Squadron out of Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in North Carolina. Access to the Freewing five-blade 64mm EDF (electric ducted-fan) unit and 30-amp ESC is gained through a removable fastener-retained foam hatch on the underside of the fuselage. The removable canopy hatch is held in place


with a spring-loaded release pin. Supply air for the EDF unit is provided by means of a pair of functional, scalelike inlet ducts that completely capture the trademark angularity of the F-105’s inlet ducting. Given the relatively small area of the scale inlet ducting, several auxiliary air inlet ducts are used to supply additional air.


Tactical


Pilots with limited hobby budgets will not only enjoy the roughly $100 price tag of the model, but also the fact that completing it can be done using inexpensive components. Those who use Spektrum (horizonhobby.com) radio gear will be able to use an inexpensive Spektrum AR400 four-channel receiver. Although Freewing suggests a relatively wide range of LiPo batteries that are acceptable for powering this jet (1,000 mAh to 2,200 mAh), pilots who like their models lightweight and their wallets heavy will probably go with the typically inexpensive three-


The unique control configuration mechanically couples the elevators and ailerons. It requires that pilots add in a little extra up-elevator to prevent the nose from falling through in the turns.


cell 1,000 mAh to 1,300 mAh packs. This tiny Thud employs a unique method of mechanically coupled ailerons and elevators for primary control surfaces. This results in an airframe that only requires two 9-gram servos. Neither a rudder nor landing gear is included on the model. Given the jet’s coupled control surface configuration, a radio system that is capable of doing a delta mix is required.


Although the current trend in foam- composition models favors glueless assembly, the Freewing F-105 airframe will require pilots to use an appropriate adhesive. Contact-style cement plays nicely with EPO foam and gives pilots a little extra time to properly position the pieces before the glue sets. Pilots might want to take a few moments to thoroughly examine the kit components before beginning assembly.


This kit has a low parts count and features a fantastic, factory-applied paint job and U.S. Air Force graphics. It can be assembled in less than an hour using either contact adhesive or epoxy.


42 PARK PILOT [Summer 2018]


The short strip of plywood used to anchor the ESC apparently became dislodged in transit on the kit provided for this review. A few carefully applied drops of medium foam-safe CA glue, along with a spritz or two of CA kicker, quickly locked it back into place.


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