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I love flying the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L and am not giving up on it! I plan on recovering it, fixing the minor issues it has and putting it back in the air. This is far too good of a plane to retire permanently.
Click image to enlarge

Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L Update

A terrific plane is grounded for a refurbishing

Text, photos and video by Tom Hintz

Flight video by Gihad Jawhar

Posted – 4-19-2015

My Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L has been one of my favorite planes since the day I did the maiden flight. This was one of my first giant scale planes so its 91” wingspan looked huge to me (and others) as it took off. But once in the sky the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L is anything but big and lumbering. Though it can fly and land like a trainer it morphs into an animal in the sky at will with snap rolls and knifedge spins that do not seem possible for something that big. It always amazes me that that huge wing and fuse can get rotating that fast and then recover in the blink of an eye.

I Smoked It

The main reason that I am temporarily retiring my Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L is because I just had to have smoke on it. Yes smoke looks cool and yes it makes some of my D & ½ piloting skills look better but the reputation for the smoke residue killing the covering turned out to be true. I have sealed, re sealed and waxed the covering all to no avail. Every time I used the smoke the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L came down with a new loose seam.

I tried two different smoke fluid brands and got the Sullivan SmokeWriter pump turned down as far as could get it but the damage remained. To make matters worse I was learning to hover (OK, a little) and do other slower maneuvers that frequently let the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L become engulfed in the cloud of smoke. While that looks cool it also means the plane comes down with a layer of oil residue all over it. And that means more covering coming loose.

As my skills with the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L grew the area of the plane covered with smoke residue (left) grew to nearly 100%. The resulting damage is clear on the elevators (right) but many other places as well.
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I have talked to everyone that will listen and there appears to be no remedy for the covering issues other than stripping it off and putting on new covering. I am not opposed to the work and kind of like being able to give the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L a new look but I do wish I had skipped the smoke idea.

In the time I have been flying the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L I have never been easy on it. Along the way it also developed the inevitable hangar and trailer rash so there are a few things that need fixing as well. The elevators in particular got the worst beating when moving a plane this big around a shop along with into and out of in the trailer.

The Replacement

For those who think I am abandoning Aeroworks fear not. The plane destined to receive the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L components is the Aeroworks 50cc 540 ARF. I have always loved the looks of this plane and all of the Aeroworks 50cc 540 ARF’s I have seen fly promise the performance I need to help me learn more aerobatics and 3D. So for now the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L goes into the shop for the TLC it deserves and the Aeroworks 50cc 540 ARF comes to the assembly area (fancy name for the left bay of my garage, some of it anyway) and my fascination with big RC planes continues.

The Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L is a superior airplane with far more capabilities than I can make use of at this point. It is so easy to fly that even newer giant scale pilots feel comfortable trying new things. The Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L is a pleasure to fly and I am not going to abandon it! It will come back to the fight line looking a bit different; in better shape overall and with the same wide-ranging capabilities that makes it one of the best all-around gassers in the world.

Stay tuned for the upcoming Aeroworks 50cc 540 ARF build and for the return of the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L, perhaps in a different color scheme but still with that fabulous airframe.

The smoke was fun for a while and an attraction at air shows (left) but I love flying the Aeroworks 60cc Freestyle Extra 260 QB-L so it is time to refurbish it to fly again!
Click image to enlarge

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