Desert Aricraft, or DA is without a doubt one of if not the best engine maufacturers available, due to their simplicity, reliability and light weight. Add to this their power and no need to play with needles and you have it all!
When I put together my Krill Model 37% Sukhoi 29 I had no doubt about the engine, it had to be a DA, and it had to be the 170cc. I must thank Toni Clark – Practical Scale, importers of DA for Europe (as well as Zenoah, Valach, and much more) for theis support for this great engine.
As for the last couple of years of competition I have been down on power in my competition models, and knowing that I was going to be competing at the EXFC in August 2011 I wanted to have the most power possible. For this I decided on the RE3 tuned pipes designed by MTW-Silencer, which are designed for this engine and increase power by some 400rpm!
I have used a Re3 before on my DA 85 with great results (in my Hangar-9 Extra 260) so I knew that this was the best option for what I needed.
The pipes are very long, so I had to slightly modify the position of the rudder servos, but the increase in power was well worth the extra work.
On the day of the maiden we started the engine and this leaped into life just as if it had been run in already, very easy with just 4 or 5 flips to get it primed, and then a further 4 or 5 to have the DA singing
After a couple of minutes to let the engine get oiled and loosten up a little we slowly increased power until getting to full revs. The power is insane. You would not want to hold the model on your own as it would probably be able to knock you over!
It was time to get her airborn. After the short takeoff in which the engine smoothly accelerated, I had to reduce power as the model was going way too fast! First impressions where great!
In the first flights I was amazed at the speed at which the model climed, only slowing down if you reduce power.
At landing the tick-over was perfect, being able to leave it at low revs without any kind of problem.
During the first few flights there was a slight step in the throttle, at which the motor picked up rpm very quickly, at about half power, however, after some more flights, and without touching any needles, the engine seemed to get used to the silencers and actually became more linear to the point of not having a noticeable step at all.
The best part, as expected when buying a DA, is that I have not had to touch any needles, and it starts perfectly every time. I have not even had to change anything even when trying different props, such as the Mejzlik 30*13EvoL or the 32*10 which I use normally
A great engine, just a case of screw in and enjoy!