When I received
my Zagi Fixx wing core set, I was very impressed! The material is unlike any
other plane I have. The so-called "Z-foam" is some plastic-foam derivative. It
is strong and very light.
The Wing Core kit seems to include everything but the power system so it is just
what I wanted. My only problem, so far, was in running out of the supplied
Zagi-Bond CA glue which isn't really a problem. I just popped open my Zap
foam-safe CA bottle and continued.
actually appears far superior to EPP foam. It doesn't need to be reinforced or
finished and seems very strong. If this plane flies as well as it is designed, I
think it will be winner!
The closest GWS IPS drive ratio to the 3.5:1 in the manual is an S2 but their
8x4.3 prop and 8-cell, 370mAh NiMH battery combination would be a bit hard on
the motor. Perhaps that is why they recommend using the heatsink.
I'm using an S1 motor with a GWS 7x6 prop on a 2-cell 950mAh LiPoly pack from
Wild RC. This is a proven combination and my favorite. It should triple the
flight duration too. I'm not suggesting that the stock power system isn't good.
Maybe Trick RC does have a custom gear ratio designed for the 8x4.3 prop. I'm
sure that they tested it well.
The HS-55 servos simply press into place. I'm using an FMA M5 micro receiver for
the first time so there is plenty or room left over. A Hitec 555 would fit well
Here is a shot
of the wing red bottom and white top. The servo lead is easily routed to the
center pod area. The ailerons are pre-installed and the rod is pre-bent with "Z"
bends on both ends. You simply cut the rod tips off and CA the control horn into
a molded slot.
Here is my
initial component layout on the left. My lighter LiPoly pack makes the CG about
1/4" behind the stock suggestion. I tried taping a penny up on the front nose
ledge but the amount of weight needed to balance my 2-cell 950mAh Lipoly pack
was about 1oz. I considered this excessive and decided that the 1.6oz pack was
I ended up choosing my 2s2p Kokam 1020mAh cell pack, shown on the right. This
has an amazing duration of 2040mAh at a weight of 3.3oz. It can deliver a 7amp
continuous current which gives me the option to try the GWS ducted fan motor as
an upgrade. The flight time should be about 1 hour with throttle management. I
have a small GWS receiver foam block in front of it for easy placement to obtain
Here is my final setup for the maiden voyage:
It turns out
that the decals are really meant for repairs. They cover up crack lines and help
give strength to the glued joint. I left my decal off like the box cover.
The stock canopy removal is rather left up to the builder. The manual suggests
using a sticker cut on one side as a hinge and then taping the other side closed
when flying. This was a fair attempt by Trick RC to supply something, knowing
that many R/Cers have their own methods.
I choose to CA
two of the prongs cut from the control rods into the canopy front and then use
some of the supplied Velcro cut to fit the center flat spots. I also CAed the
Velcro in place. The prongs are inserted into tiny holes drilled into the front
of the pod opening. The canopy is then pressed in the center to connect the
The Zagi Fixx is
meant to be a parkflyer with less power, weight, and speed. The wingspan is 40"
compared to the Zagi 400's 48". Experienced R/Cers can also slowfly the Fixx.
The lighter, less powerful design makes it a great model for Lithium power.
I maidened my
Zagi Fixx in 12mph wind at lunchtime today. Normally we wouldn't have flown it
in these conditions but it was "Take your child to work" day and we had a good
To my surprise, the GWS IPS powered wing really performed very well in those
conditions! I passed the stick back and forth to my buddy, Lynn, and we were
both impressed with how stabile it flew.
The Fixx is very stabile in wind although it is not very powerful. In 5mph wind,
or less, this wing will be a dream to fly! We hovered it, with, and, without
power, rolled it, looped it, and had 4 takeoffs and landings. The power system
was running full throttle for about 30 minutes when we decided to quit and go
After getting plenty of height, we dove it hard and saw no structural problems.
The plane is a very clean design.
I don't have any other GWS IPS powered plane that would perform this well in
those conditions. I would classify this plane on the border between a slowflyer
and a parkflyer. After all the wait, it was a job well done by Trick RC.
Power Upgrade #1:
I decided to start playing with the
power system...just for fun.
My measurements with the GWS S1 motor, 7x6 prop, and 2s2p Kokam pack were
2.1amps at 4500 RPMs.
I replaced the motor with an EDF version. I have a
custom puller to remove the pinion gear. I simply pressed it onto the EDF motor
until the shaft was about 3/4 through the pinion gear. I didn't want to apply
too much pressure since the other end of the shaft is not accessible.
The new setup measured 5.8amps at 5800 RPMs. It was a noticeable improvement and
my 2s2p Kokam pack can handle up to 7amps continuous. I hit the old 4500 RPM
setting at about 3/4 throttle. The motor got quite hot at full power so I
decided to add the heatsink. With the fins directly exposed to the air flow, it
should provide excellent cooling.
My EDF motor modified S1 worked very
well in the next flight test. The Fixx had some extra power when needed but flew
mostly around half throttle. The Fixx has a very low drag airfoil that is
designed for stability. Consequently, it doesn't roll well but it loops great
and handles the wind very nicely! The Fixx glides well and lands easily. The
side-to-side or roll pitch is very stabile. This makes it a great flying plane
that borderlines the parkflyer/slowflyer realm.
Power Upgrade #2:
After blowing out my EDF motor on my Zagi Fixx
during a float fly last weekend, I discovered that the plane floats great!
I let the wind blow it back to shore unharmed. Nothing got wet since all the
components are top side.
Since I didn't want to fly my Fixx indoors, I
decided to upgrade the power system from a GWS IPS motor to an EPS-300C series
motor. The EPS-300C series motors are geared Speed 300 motors with ball-bearing
gearboxes. Another great GWS design that is inexpensive...about $18.
I used the MPI EPU3738 equivalent to the EPS-300C. It has a 3.75:1 gear ratio.
My GWS 8x6 prop drew 6.7amps with my Kokam 2s2p 1020 pack. This looked just
To mount the motor, I used a short post
stuck into the GWS gearbox and epoxied it into a tunnel I cut just under the
stock post. I also changed my ESC to a 10-amp rated device.
To balance the plane from the
slightly extra tail weight, I moved my Kokam 2s2p pack of 1020mAh cells all the
way forward. This pack gives me a 2040mAh duration and can deliver 7amps
continuous so I could leave it at full throttle so the entire flight.
My first flight with the new power system went very well. I had plenty of power
at full throttle and could fly reasonably fast at slightly reduced power levels.
To my surprise, the entire motor found a way to pull off the stick and I was
left high in the air without any power! I didn't think a pusher could do that
but I was able to easily fly my Fixx to a safe landing on the flying field.
Since it had landed so well, I thought at first that I had only lost my prop.
Apparently the Fixx flies very well when it is considerably nose heavy.
I CA'ed my motor onto the plywood stick this time and haven't had a problem
since. The Fixx flies very well when you keep it in a "track" or pattern. It
loops, flies inverted, and glides great! Due to the wing and elevon design,
rolls are limited to slow movements that require reasonable power levels. This
may be the biggest flight characteristic change over the older, more popular,