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  1. #1

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    Aeroworks quality slipping

    Hi I am building the Aeroworks 50cc Yak 55m and I have to say I am disappointed in how cheap some of the wood is, making the plane fragile.

    I still haven't finished mine, about 90% done but this is my 4th Aeroworks airplane and I have to say the quality has gone down. The fit and finish are excellent but they have used super thin balsa sheeting in a lot of places, one place is where the wings go in to the fuse, I've put my finger through several times, that's how cheap it is. Another area is where you put the fuel dot and switch, cheap balsa that I had to reinforce and the fuel dot is cheap, you glue it in and when the fuel dot is in the fuel line using the recommended 1/8 i.d. , it won't fit, even when I put Vaseline on the line as instructed, it is a bad fuel dot and remember the cheap balsa it goes into, it is getting crushed while trying to put the fuel line into the plane since fuel dot doesn't fit when inserted into the fuel line, bad design, cheap hardware. Another area is in the fuse behind the cowl where you have to cut a vent hole and it is the same super cheap balsa. Another issue I see is the hardware for attaching the elevators the the fuse, looks pretty cheap and my previous Aeroworks planes always had great hardware. Another issue for anyone using gas, as I am, Aeroworks does not supply any gas tubing with their plane. I love Aeroworks and their planes fly great but I do not like to see them skimping on quality to save a buck, these planes have to last for awhile so they need to have good wood, sturdy wood not just look good.

    Maybe instead of sending your planes to magazines or web sites such as rcuniverse to build it and review it for free, you should send a plane to the little guy who doesn't have a vested interest in giving the plane a great review even if it has issues, after all they get a free plane and engine and are paid to write the review. Try sending your planes to the little guys who don't build planes for a living or write reviews for a living and you might get some unbiased feedback from the general modeler who can't build it in 8-10 hrs and doesn't have 30 years building and flying experience because these are probably the people who are actually buying the airplanes and flying them and have to try and make them last for awhile.

  2. #2
    Mark Dennis's Avatar
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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    Chuck,

    Thank you for taking the time to post. I have added parts of your secon paragraph below and addressed your concerns in red:


    I still haven't finished mine, about 90% done but this is my 4th Aeroworks airplane and I have to say the quality has gone down. The fit and finish are excellent but they have used super thin balsa sheeting in a lot of places, one place is where the wings go in to the fuse, I've put my finger through several times, that's how cheap it is.

    The wing saddle joint is not structural, we elected to use thin balsa in this location to help save weight as well as to create the air-foiled shape. It is advised that the airplane not be picked up in this area.



    Another area is where you put the fuel dot and switch, cheap balsa that I had to reinforce and the fuel dot is cheap, you glue it in and when the fuel dot is in the fuel line using the recommended 1/8 i.d. , it won't fit, even when I put Vaseline on the line as instructed, it is a bad fuel dot and remember the cheap balsa it goes into, it is getting crushed while trying to put the fuel line into the plane since fuel dot doesn't fit when inserted into the fuel line, bad design, cheap hardware.

    The supplied fuel dot does fit a little tight when using 1/8" fuel tubing, we have found that slightly drilling out the fuel dot can help the fuel tubing slide in and out easier. We also suggest upgrading the fuel dot to the one supplied in our fuel line installation kit, this can be found on page 40 of the manual. As for the balsa sheeting, our sheeting size has never changed on the fuse sides for any of our airplanes. We use this size to help maintain strength but to also save weight.


    Another area is in the fuse behind the cowl where you have to cut a vent hole and it is the same super cheap balsa.

    See my answer in regard to the fuel dot above.

    Another issue I see is the hardware for attaching the elevators the the fuse, looks pretty cheap and my previous Aeroworks planes always had great hardware.

    I am not sure exactly what you mean by this? We have always used the same 7075 Aluminum tubes and 4-40 bolts/bonded washers to attach our stabs to the fuse. Nothing has changed in this area since we stared the QB series in 2005.

    Another issue for anyone using gas, as I am, Aeroworks does not supply any gas tubing with their plane.

    We elected to stop supplying fuel tubing back in 2009 due to inferior quality from overseas. We would rather the customer purchase their own tubing that they feel comfortable with then tubing that will become stiff and can cause an engine out situation.

    I love Aeroworks and their planes fly great but I do not like to see them skimping on quality to save a buck, these planes have to last for awhile so they need to have good wood, sturdy wood not just look good.

    I can assure you were have not skimped on quality to save production costs. We do strive to keep our airplanes as light as possible, that is why we use the highest grade balsa we can get, this balsa is considerably lighter than many other manufacturers but that does result in it being slightly more fragile than the lower balsa grades.

    I hope this has answered some of your questions and concerns, please let me know if there is anything else I can do for you!

    Mark Dennis
    Aeroworks
    (303) 371-4222 Ext 105
    Mark@Aero-Works.Net

  3. #3

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    any areas that require exits for switches and fuel dots should be lined from the inside with either added 1/16 balsa or bass or what ever owner chooses.
    Since most of us put these in various locations, I cant see why AW should be faulted.

    Funny how people complain that planes are too heavy and overbuilt, then complain that they are too light and fragile.

    Its a lot easier to beef up areas when assembling, rather than take weight out. Common sense.

  4. #4
    sensei's Avatar
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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    I agree, Aeroworks is doing a great job providing great quality lightweight airplanes, many people associate weight with quality, it is just the way thing are, but when it comes to airplanes weight is really not a great thing. I will just leave it at that.

    Bob
    Fly It Like You Stole It!!!

  5. #5

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    Hi Mark, the reason I made these statements is I have had 2 Aeroworks 35cc extra 300 QB, still have one after 5 years and they are built sturdier then my new yak. Also, the hardware attaching the elevators to the fuse is sturdier in the extra or at least it appears to be, pop open a box and take a look. I also had an old Aeroworks 540T 25% which was built like a rock. I also have a 90-120 Aeroworks Yak, the 35CC Extra 300 QB and the 90-120 Yak QB came with fuel lines. As far as providing a fuel dot that has to be drilled out to make it work, I think this should be addressed. I fly my planes out of a grass field and fly them pretty hard, I don't baby them and this is my first 50CC model so I was surprised that some of the plane was so fragile, I try to make my planes last since they are expensive.

    I talked to you Mark before I bought the plane, I bought the plane, spinner, props, drill jig, etc from you guys and no one mentioned I needed the fuel kit, it was probably just an oversight. I always promote Aeroworks to people in my club and everyone knows that Aeroworks is my first choice for airplanes.

    Chuck

  6. #6

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    In their defense, in the past they have been targeted with having more than adequate and beefy planes, and some complaints and suggestion have resulted in lighter airframes, ( I am assuming)

    The lack of fuel lines is understandable, no big deal, get 3$ worth at your LHS and its likely reliable and good for 3 years.
    I have only owned one AW Extra 260 Freestyle 30cc, the airframe was 100% as was hardware compared the dozens of other ARF's I bought over the years.

    I would only ask for the optionial tunnel In that frame.
    No company has 100% satisfaction, hopefully something can be resolved if needed.


  7. #7

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    Actually I love Aeroworks and was trying to give what I thought would be constructive feedback/suggestions from the little guy who buys and flies their airplanes. I love the 50cc Yak 55m but I am an intermediate builder and I am trying to put the plane together as perfectly as possible, following the instructions. I already bought new fuel lines so that is no longer an issue. I think I was trying to give a perspective from the regular guy who buys and flies these planes vs. the big magazines and professional pilots that are given the planes to write a review and really have no money or attachment to the plane, I guess I didn't succeed.

  8. #8
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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping


    ORIGINAL: Mark Dennis
    Another issue for anyone using gas, as I am, Aeroworks does not supply any gas tubing with their plane.

    We elected to stop supplying fuel tubing back in 2009 due to inferior quality from overseas. We would rather the customer purchase their own tubing that they feel comfortable with then tubing that will become stiff and can cause an engine out situation.

    Mark Dennis
    Aeroworks
    (303) 371-4222 Ext 105
    Mark@Aero-Works.Net
    Mark,

    If you ever decide to pack gas line with your kits again, maybe we could do business. I've sourced great polyurethane tubing that is soft and flexible, and stays that way for years. I am still using the original tank I set-up 4 years ago, with original lines still as flexible and supple as when new. The best part is they are also inexpensive, quite a bit less than a buck a foot

    Contact me directly if interested. Email addy in my signature....Thanks
    Regards,
    MattK
    (Rcmaster199@aol.com)

  9. #9

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    Chuck I think you can clearly see how much AW really cares about your concerns... It sounds like a politician making a speech but not really saying much ..I love the AW planes and trere are a few I would really like to have like the Bravata with floats and the Carbon Cub , and the Cessna LC-126 with floats . but the customer service really worries me .. When I deal with Horizion I always go away satisfied that I have been treated fairly , even more than fair...I have been given little gifts for my trouble etc.. Now I don't expect that kind of treatment but what I see from AW is denial and refusal to do anything to keep the customer happy...In the last year I have purchased Hanger 9 's new PA 19 and the B.N.F. Taylor Craft and the 1/4 scale J3 Cub on Hanger 9's floats .. Each one of these planes required some customer service.. The PA18 needed a wing ,a windshield and a strut cover replaced .. The Taylor Craft needed some servos ,the throttle went up in smoke as soon as it was plugged in and one elevator servo was dead and they were discontinued so they sent me two so the would match .. The J3 floats needed a float replaced due to shipping damage 3 times... They were great about it...Never an argument... Now I don't mind the fact that the planes are't perfect as long as I know I can trust the customer support....I would probably buy the Bravata if I knew that there wasen't going to be an argument over warped wings and the Cessna LC-126 is another one I really like but if there is something wrong I don't want to argue , I just want the defective part replaced by a polite customer service rep...
    Ken , Biker BC Cub Brother #6 Ultra Sport Brother # 100 Tiger Club # 7 Pulse Brother # 1 Sig Brother # 58 Top Flight Brother # 9

  10. #10

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    RE: Aeroworks quality slipping

    actually I called aero works yesterday to discuss the fact the wings were hard to get in and out, very tight fit, I was transferred to the tech dept and I was given excellent advice and tips on my plane. I was told to sand the inside of the wing where the tube goes in after listening to my symptoms, I am in a very humid area which can cause the wood to swell, so I sanded the tube inside the wing and the wings go in and out perfectly, some of concerns were probably due to being anxious at buying my first 50cc and the investment I made. Turns out I finally got to fly it today after all our bad weather and it flies like a dream, breaking in new engine also so I had to take it easy, the plane flies at just above idle, very docile for landings and going down line, but was very responsive when I needed it. I was really impressed with how the plane flew IMAC maneuvers at just above idle and a new engine. I will continue to buy aero works and I think they give excellent customer service, so I wouldn't let my earlier complaint dissuade you from buying aero works.

  11. #11

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    We have had many discussions on the "Bravata" thread regarding wing panels with unequal incidence, causeing a significant amount of right aileron trim and the use of unsightly trim tabs. Even at Toledo, we hear they discovered the problem with different types of wood used in each wing, but so far, Aeroworks has not stepped up to the plate to take care of its customers. Apparently, they choose to do nothing and think telling us of the results of their investigation will placate us. Where is the customer service and ethical behavior? Biker is right, other distributors are there and make things right when there is a problem.

    Mark, how about "choosing" to do something for all of us that have Bravata wing problems and poor paint match on cowls? Do you care?
    John from Portage, Michigan
    Cub Brotherhood #137, Fleet Brotherhood #6, Sig Kadet Brotherhood #38

  12. #12
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    You guys have me kinda worried about making my AW purchase..
    Alan

    CORSAIR Brotherhood # 90

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by drube View Post
    You guys have me kinda worried about making my AW purchase..
    Don't be!! I have purchased AW since they started their QB line. Nothing will ever be 100%. I find that if I just want to fly and have a weekend of no issue fun.. AW planes just work. Like a DA engine.
    Barry Young

  14. #14
    drube's Avatar
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    Thanks Barry, I received my AW Extra 300 and couldn't be happier! Nice plane! Thanks AW!
    Alan

    CORSAIR Brotherhood # 90

  15. #15

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    Hi, Matt could you share the fuel tubing info with me on what brand name is and where I can buy some. Fuel tubing getting hard in the tanks is still a issue unless I want to spend a Dollar per inch (Flouran?) Thanks Bob

  16. #16

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    You might want to buy a Roto Flow tank

  17. #17

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    I just posted a write up similar to this one about my 30cc Edge 540 somewhere in all this. If anyone is interested, look for it because my problems could be yours too.

  18. #18

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    I to would agree Aero-works customer service is not cracked up to what it should be. I ordered a replacement canopy for my freestyle 30 cc extra and after paying a overpriced 50bucks plus shipping it arrived and it doesn't match the same as the rest of the plane. I was told it is hard to get the correct color match for yellow. What a BS answer that was. Customer service guy Vince really talks like a politician and I will never buy another Aero-works plane. There are other issues also like the cheap flakly balsa wood and ply . Covering wont stay tight on turtle deck and yes I do know how to tighten the covering to make it stay tight. Landing gear also need beefed up with fiberglass matting and glue to hold it in place. My landing gear plate came loose after 20 flights and I never had a bad landing. The plane does fly great I will say that but for the money there are better deals out there and better customer service people to deal with.
    Bruce A Swartfager

  19. #19

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    I have an AW 30cc Extra 300 that although it is a very nice flying airplane, had some build issues. As the little things began to pile up I decided to politely point out things that AW might consider. My comments were in no way a condemnation of the airplane but that's apparently what AW felt. Here are just a few items:
    1) Very loose covering (yes I know about temperature, humidity etc.,) but my comment was that I had ARFs that cost a lot less money and had fewer wrinkles. The response from AW was as though I never built an airplane before.
    2) The "T" bar for the steerable tail wheel was missing from the parts kit. I made one and never heard from AW regarding the replacement they offered.
    3) The recommended twin elevator servos could not be fully inserted because they hit each other. Shims were needed but not addressed in the manual. How nice it would have been to recommend servos that fit without shimming.
    4) A friend with another Extra 300 warned me about reinforcing the gear mounting area. The short metal plate added to the side plywood frame would tear out of the plywood on even a hint of a rough landing. I checked mine and sure enough, one side was cracked. The new kits have a longer plate to spread the load so it was a known issue.
    5) The hitch pins used to hold the wings in position go through stubby aluminum tubes that extend into the fuselage. Those holes are drilled vertical but the hitch pins are too long so they are difficult to insert due to interference with a flat ply canopy/fuse surface. Drilling those holes at about a 15 degree angle off vertical was suggested and again I was blown off as "get used to it".
    6) Pin hinge holes were not drilled full depth. Good thing I trial fit things before epoxying those in. Again, nothing in the manual about drilling those to the desired depth.
    7) Wrong bolts were sent with the DLE-30 engine. Not an AW issue but something they need to address with their supplier.

    These are just a few of the issues I related to AW. During the final stages of construction I decided AW was not interested in constructive comments so I quite documenting things. As I said, nice airplane, flies nice, and looks nice. A little attention to detail and a bit of work in the manuals would go a long way to alleviating annoying assembly issues. I will not say I will not buy another AW model, but I will give it serious thought and look closely at the on-line manuals -- if they post them..

  20. #20
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    Lc-126 all done up and ready whith its new panel linesClick image for larger version. 

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  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by loopdeeloop View Post
    During the final stages of construction I decided AW was not interested in constructive comments so I quite documenting things.
    Yeah… I found quite a few fleas in my AW kit, tried to present them in a semi-positive light, in the thread that THEY started; and not the first comment from them.

    After quite a bit of should-not-have-been-necessary effort, I THINK I have the airplane right. The bad weather has prevented me from finding out. But I'm pretty much fed up with the entire experience.

    I WILL say it… they have lost me as a customer.

    .


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