Precision Aerobatics Katana MX
This is Precision Aerobatics’ second release
in a new line of next-generation airplanes.
The model has a completely new re-engi-neered aerodynamic design that is derived
from the Katana MD, which also has
custom new airfoils.
Constructed from Precision’s FiberFu-sion technology, the airplane has embedded carbon fiber within each of the
fuselage stringers and uses carbon-fiber
cross-bracing to increase strength without
any kind of a weight penalty.
Also included in the kit are numerous
carbon-fiber parts, including the gear, wing
tube, wing leading edge, control arms, and
pushrods. Also included are German ball
links and CNC-machined clevises, a CNC-machined battery tray, and a generous
hardware package. The fiberglass cowl and
wheel pants are reinforced with carbon
fiber. Optional upgrades include recommended carbon-fiber servo arms, carbon-fiber vortex generators, a carbon-fiber spinner with aluminum backplate, and a set of
carbon-fiber wheel pants. If you follow the
TAKE THE TIME TO DIAL IN YOUR MIXES AND EXPOS, AND YOU’LL HAVE AN AEROBATIC PLANE THAT WILL AMAZE.
When it comes to developing a full-out
3D capable aerobatic airplane, the folks
at Precision Aerobatics know their stu;.
Similar to the last Precision Aerobatics plane I reviewed, the Bandit,
the Katana MX has amazing power and superior performance that far
exceeds any full-scale airplane. One of the things that brings Precision
Aerobatics airplanes above the pack is their relative ruggedness and
impressive power-to-weight ratio. With its pilot-friendly wing loading,
the Katana is capable of every aerobatic move in the book, and it is easily
capable of both wild, high energy, 3D performance, as well as smooth
and predictable precision flight. If you set it up with high and low rates
(or even Flight Modes, if your radio has this
capability), you can enjoy both ends of the flight
spectrum with unlimited aerobatics on one end
and almost trainer-like slow speed for landings.
A great combination for any intermediate to
advanced RC pilot. With the test setup, you can
expect 6- to 8-minute flight times based on how
aggressively you fly and use the throttle.
IN THE AIR
GEAR USED Radio: JR 11X transmitter ( jrradios.com), Spektrum AR6200 2.4 receiver ( spektrumrc.com), and four Hitec HS-5085MG servos ( hitecrcd.com) Motor: PA ;rust 50 & PA Quantum Pro 70A speed control Battery: Two PA 2200mAh 20-40C 3S Li Po packs in series Prop: Vox 15x8 ( voxprops.com)
GENERAL FLIGHT PERFORMANCE
Stability: Like all Precision Aerobatic designs, the
Katana MX is well balanced and very stable at all
speeds. Again, depending on your control throw
and rates, you can have a takeo; that’s nice, slow, and graceful, or you can
punch it and go vertical in less than 3 feet.
Tracking: ;e best description I can give for tracking is that it is amazing.
Even at lower airspeeds, the Katana feels like it’s flying on rails. On the
ground, the rudder is very e;ective and the plane is undemanding to keep
in a straight line. Any experienced pilot with intermediate to advanced
piloting skills will feel completely comfortable at the sticks.
Aerobatics: As the company name implies, their designs are purpose-
built aerobatic planes and there’s really no limit to what they can do.
Well, maybe the only limit is the pilot’s skills. Power equals vertical
performance and this plane has no issues blasting o; for exciting flights.
On our getting-to-know-you first test flight, loops were performed
perfectly at about half throttle. Exits were right on the spot where we
entered the maneuver. Both inside or outside loops were e;ortless—but
don’t try full power loops. At the advanced control throws, you can snap
out of the maneuver. Rolls that are slow or super fast, as well as point
rolls, are almost too easy. ;ey are very axial and you can do them with
authority or stretch them from one end of the flying field to the other.
Snapping maneuvers too are very honest and predictable. Hovering is
downright easy and with a bit of a headwind, you can harrier it in a landing
at extremely slow speeds. With high rates, rolls are extremely fast, yet
stop on a dime when you center the stick. Knife
edge can be horizon-to-horizon and feels great
at about 1/3 throttle. Inverted flight requires
almost no down-elevator input, and like all the
other aerobatic maneuvers, it feels solid and
undemanding. Just take the time to dial in your
mixes and expos, and you’ll have an aerobatic
plane that will amaze.
If you want performance, the Katana is a machine that will make you very
happy. It has it all and can be set up to be the best sport flyer on the planet
or you can kick the rates and expo way up and go out of this world and
into the exciting whelm of unlimited 3D. Flown at one or two mistakes
high, this is the perfect plane to try new moves with. ;en when you get
comfortable, you can bring it down on the deck and surprise everyone.
But don’t let anyone know how easy it is with the Katana!