E-flite UMX Sbach 342 3D
Ultra-micro flight has taken off like a tornado and E-flite has been good to modelers with both indoor/outdoor releases that
are not too tough on the wallet. A much-welcome package recently arrived on my
doorstep containing the Mike McConville-designed UMX Sbach 342 3D. This 342’s
wingspan is smaller than my other Sbach
model’s propeller, but I have a feeling that
Tiny but mighty, the 180 brushless motor and little 2S
Li Po deliver high performance.
THE AS3X MODELS ARE BY FAR THE MOST STABLE AIRPLANES IN THEIR SIZE CLASS THAT I HAVE EVER FLOWN.
;e long-throw servos are pre-installed with their
wiring taped in place. At 2.4 grams, these are perfect
for the model.
the two will share similar stability characteristics in flight. The box the Sbach arrives
in also serves as a carrying case and affords
room for your flight batteries as well as for
the included SFGs. Don’t let the foam airframe fool you, as it is well built and feels
rigid enough for some “UMXtreme” maneuvers. The manual states that this is a sophisticated hobby product and is not intended for
children without direct adult supervision.
As for construction details, wire landing
gear is pre-installed. Foam wheels and
wheel pants are also added and I should
mention that the mains detach if you fly
from grass. Steering while taxiing comes by
way of a tailwheel attached to the rudder.
A tinted, plastic canopy is pre-attached,
and a well-trimmed paint scheme adorns
the airplane with a few already-added de-
To arm the ESC and AS3X system
(after binding) you will first turn on your
transmitter, wait five seconds, place the
aircraft out of the wind, and plug in the battery. Wait a few seconds and a
series of tones accompanied by a continuous LED light will let you know
you’re ready to fly. Smooth surfaces are kind to
the UMX Sbach’s landing gear and as mentioned
they are removed in seconds if needed. Should
you need to hand launch the model, it has more
than enough power to climb out at any angle.
;e steerable tailwheel and rudder authority
combine to make rolling around on the runway
easy. When you advance your throttle and
begin to take o;, the plane pretty much pulls
o; the ground immediately and without much
correction required thanks to the AS3X on-board
stabilization system. I set up my first flight with
a five-minute timer and when it was time to land, I found it best to leave
some throttle on and use small elevator inputs until touchdown; the
ailerons and rudder seem to maintain themselves.
IN THE AIR
size class, that I have ever flown. ;is one is no di;erent, is not bothered
by light to moderate winds, and flies like a much larger plane.
Tracking: A 17-inch wingspan and a length of 16. 4 inches has its
limitations but once trimmed out, you will be amazed by how well it stays
on course. ;is plane feels like it has a much bigger wingspan.
Aerobatics: ;e thrust-to-weight ratio will
let you do any maneuver in the 3D realm and
precision aerobatics benefit from the speed and
stability the plane possesses.
Glide and stall performance: At 1.9 oz ready to fly,
the UMX Sbach 342 will float around with little
power. If you cut power completely, just keep the
nose down a few degrees and it will glide pretty
slowly back to terra firma.
GEAR USED Radio/receiver/servos: JR 9303 DSM2/ Spektrum 6-channel AS3X receiver with brushless ESC, ( 4) 2.3g long throw linear servos ( spektrumrc.com) Motor: E-flite BL 180 2500Kv ( e-fliterc.com) Battery: E-flite 2s180 20C Prop: E-flite 5x2.75 electric
GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE
Stability: ;e AS3X models are by far the most stable airplanes, in their
No matter if you are an intermediate or advanced
pilot, you will pretty much look like a pro pilot flying the UMX Sbach
342 because of the installed AS3X technology. Forget about how ultra
micro used to fly; this system alleviates pilot load by o;ering supreme
stabilization and aiding against torque and turbulence. A carbon-fiber-
reinforced airframe remains rigid enough and a powerful brushless setup
keeps your throttle thumb happy.