Home RC Airplane Reviews E-flite UMX Beast RC Airplane Review
E-flite UMX Beast RC Airplane Review Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 10 August 2011 23:18


History

The Beast is a highly modified design with its roots stemming from the Pitts Model 12 biplane. While most Model 12 aircraft have 2 seats, the Beast has been modified to be a single place aircraft. This reduced the weight of the basic aircraft substantially, and eliminated some of the drag associated with the two-place canopy. Jim Kimball Enterprises of Zellwood, Florida set a goal of having a piston powered biplane with a greater than 1:1 thrust to weight ratio. I am proud to announce that this goal was obtained with the Beast! How? First of all with excruciating focus to detail in the construction, materials and methods used to build the Beast. Carbon fiber, titanium, and magnesium were used to keep the aircraft light yet strong. However, years of hard core aerobatics has proven that a welded tube truss fuselage is hard to beat. The Beast is powered by a Russian Vedeneyev M14P, 9 cylinder radial engine that is capable of producing 412 horsepower and a great than 1:1 thrust to weight ratio, truly making this biplane 'beast'. For more information on this incredible plane check out Beast Airshows.



Intro

For several years now Hangar 9 has had a giant 89” replica of The Beast that any saucy consumer could buy. The price tag was a bit too steep and my flying area was a tad too small to accommodate such a craft. Naturally, when the E-flite UMX Beast was released I was excited to get my hands on it. The price tag was still a bit high for an ultra-micro but recently E-flite dropped the BnF price to only $99! At this price the mini biplane was a rocking deal and a good friend and fellow member of the flying field bought one and asked me to review it! Thanks to Ron and RC Hobbies for providing the UMX Beast for this review.

   

Kit Contents

The E-flite UMX Beast comes in a Bind-n-Fly package that includes everything needed to get the biplane in the air. Inside the box is the 100% assembled mini Beast, a 2S charger, a 2S 120mah 20c battery, sticky velcro pads for the battery, and the manual. The plane comes with an 180BL brushless 2300kv motor installed and an AR6400BL 6 channel receiver/esc that powers both the motor and the servos. All of the electronics inside the plane are hooked up and ready to roll the minute the box is opened.  

   

Assembly

Since the UMX Beast is 100% assembled there is nothing to do except hook the included charger up to a 12v power source, charge the battery and stretch your thumbs. Once all of these steps have been completed the UM Beast is now ready to fly.

Features

The UMX Beast features a realistic paint scheme that closely matches the real life counterpart. The plane features 4-channel controls, a powerful mini brushless motor, strong servos and a 5 x 2.75 electric prop. Despite the small stature, the biplane looks incredible from top of the wing to the bottom of the wheel pants.

   

First Flight

There was a slight breeze blowing for the first flight, but I was not concerned as I thought it would be a great test of the Beast’s abilities.

After a quick pre-flight check I set the plane down, rolled out on the runway and pulled back towards the sky. The peppy little biplane lifted off and into the air. It took a few seconds to get acclimated to the characteristics but within 30 seconds I was flying confidently. The UM Beast felt very stable and was not too affected by the wind! The plane had a great amount of power and I was flying most of the flight under ½ throttle. The vertical climbing ability is better than another other UM I have flown and yet it does not feel as twitchy like so many others.

Part way through the first flight I felt like the beast could use more aileron throw, so we brought the plane down and dialed in the full movement on the ailerons. With the ailerons set to max, the agility of the plane shot through the roof. To say the rolls were ‘snappy’ is an understatement. I enjoyed the ability of the plane to roll like a bat out of hell but still maintain overall stability.

The first flights were a complete success and the UMX Beast handled everything I could throw at it and did it all with ease.

   

Flight Characteristics

The UMX Beast is a completely stable flying micro. The plane cuts through the air better than the majority of Ultra Micros on the market and it looks good doing it. Inverted flight is really nice and it is so easy it is almost relaxing.

When the controls are maxed out the Ultra Micro Biplane turns into a Beast. The plane will whip, snap, crack and spin as fast as you can command it and it does it without hesitation. With full controls you must make sure and fly the plane so that it doesn’t fly you. The little RC airplane is capable of nearly all the ‘tricks’ and maneuvers out there and one can do them with peace of mind knowing that the Beast doesn’t break the pocketbook.

Takeoffs and Landings

Taking off can be done from the ground or with a small hand launch. The plane has so much power; it could probably be pointed towards the sky and just flown straight up. Either way you choose to get the plane in the air is easy with the ample power available.

Landing needs a little more finesse but is not too difficult. The plane is floaty enough that throttling slowly and methodically will tame the Beast down to the ground in a predictable manner.  Grass landings resemble more of a ditch landing and could potentially damage the gear so take care to slow the plane down sufficiently before attempting to land in the grass.

Is This Plane For a Beginner?

People may think that since the Beast is a biplane that floats really well and is very controllable that it makes a solid beginner’s choice. Sadly this is not the case. The plane is really marketed as a sport/3D plane and has the power to back that up. It is not a good choice for a first timer. Although, if you have some flying experience and really want to fly this plane, start with very reduced throws before attempting to put it in the air, the plane will last much longer while you learn how to fly it.

   

Conclusion

The E-Flite UMX Beast is a ferocious plane wrapped in a tight package. The micro biplane is a respectable copy of its big brother that delivers on all fronts. The RC Airplane has a plethora of power coming from the micro brushless motor and yet still maintains a degree of loftiness when the power is off. The plane can be flown indoors or out, but I would not venture inside unless a gymnasium is at your disposal. From knife edges, spins, flips, harriers and hovering, the UMX Beast can do it all. The deal is even sweeter now that the airplane sells new for $99. If you have ever hesitated on buying this bird, hesitate no longer!

GRADE: A-

Pros

  • New Improved Price!
  • Bursting at the seams with power
  • Maneuverable and docile = docilerable
  • Scale paint and design, looks just like the big daddy Beast

Neutrals

  • Personal preference: Wish the included charger plugged into a lighter or AC/DC rather than 12 volt DC.

Cons

  • None Noted

 

 Media and FLIGHT Time!

   

   



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