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Written by John Kauk
The popular sport model now comes in a foam version
Abridged product review
Photos by the author
Read the full product review in the February 2016 issue of
Model Aviation.


Specifications

Model type: Sport
Skill level: Intermediate
Wingspan: 55 inches
Wing area: 551 square inches
Airfoil: Semisymmetrical
Length: 45 inches
Weight: 3.7 pounds
Power system: BL 15-size 880 Kv outrunner motor (installed); 40-amp ESC (installed); 3S 2,500 to 4,000 mAh LiPo battery (required)
Radio: Spektrum four-channel minimum (required)
Construction: Molded Z-Foam
Covering/finish: Paint, decals
Price: $ 239.99


Test-model Details

Power system: E-flite BL 15 motor (included); 12 x 8 propeller (included); 40-amp ESC (included); 3S 3,200 mAh LiPo battery (required)
Radio: Spektrum DX9 Black Edition transmitter; AR636A receiver (included)
Ready-to-fly weight: 3.6 pounds
Flight duration: 7 minutes


Pluses

• Super fast and easy assembly.
• Choice of two landing gear styles.
• Large hatch for easy battery access.
• AS3X receiver for stable, locked-in feel.


Minus

• No pilot figure in the cockpit.


Product review

Horizon Hobby’s series of Pulse sport models, originally designed by Mike McConville, has been around for a while. One of my club members has owned several of them, and they’ve all been well built and fun for him to fly. When I was given the opportunity to take a look at the new Pulse 15e BNF model, I knew it was an airplane that I would enjoy.

Delivered to my house double-boxed, with all parts sealed in plastic bags and securely fastened inside of a Styrofoam inner container, the Pulse arrived in perfect shape. A quick glance through the box contents revealed a nicely painted, molded Z-Foam airframe with all of the power and radio components installed, blue anodized main gear with wheels and wheel pants installed, and a bag with the rest of the parts required for completion.




Here are the parts as they come out of the box. Included are nicely molded Z-Foam airframe parts, blue anodized landing gear, and a bag of smaller parts that are ready for quick assembly.


Flying

I got together with my friend, Vernon Nelson, on a beautiful morning for test flights and photos. After a short briefing about the airplane’s setup, I set the throttle-activated timer for 6 minutes, carried the model out, and lined it up on the runway. When Vernon advanced the throttle, the Pulse tracked straight as it gained speed, and lifted off after a short run.

After a couple of circuits around the field and a bit of up-trim, Vernon was comfortable enough with the Pulse to begin making low-level passes and Figure Eights for photos. He commented on the airplane’s smooth handling and easy flight, and did a few rolls and loops to investigate its aerobatic capabilities.

When the DX9 radio’s voice alarm announced, “One minute remaining,” Vernon set up for the landing. Despite a slight crosswind, the final approach was steady and easy to keep in line thanks to the AS3X system smoothing the wind buffeting. Vernon made a picture-perfect landing.

Since that first day, I’ve flown the Pulse 15e quite a bit. The landing gear handles a grass runway with ease, and the wheel pants look great and don’t cause any problems.

In the air, the Pulse 15e is stable and easy to fly. It can be fast and responsive, and is capable of a full repertoire of standard aerobatic maneuvers. Slow flight is also stable and smooth. When the Pulse stalls, it usually drops its nose a little and keeps flying.

I’ve had a lot of fun pointing it into the wind, cutting the throttle back to a slow idle, and trying to keep it on the edge of stalling for as long as possible. Recovery is simple: apply some power and the airplane flies on.

Conclusion

The E-flite Pulse 15e BNF is a winner. Assembly is fast and easy with good parts’ fit and quality. It’s big enough to present well in the air and is a lot of fun to fly.

The AS3X receiver gives the model a locked-in feel in a wide range of conditions, which allows the pilot to focus more on flying the airplane and less on correcting for the wind. I think it would be a great model for an intermediate pilot moving from a trainer to something more challenging.
—John Kauk
john@kauk.net


Video


Manufacturer/Distriutor

Horizon Hobby
(800) 338-4639
www.e-fliterc.com


Sources

Spektrum
(800) 338-4639
www.spektrumrc.com

2 comments

Why didn't you mention the cowl flying off. The elevators and ailerons detaching due to foam hinges (must replace w ca hinges), or the need to dial out the thrust angle as it dives towards the ground with acceleration, or the fact that the control rods are so flexible that you have to modify that and all the above mentioned very serious problems before you can safely fly this plane.
I love Horizon. They replaced mine when ALL THE ABOVE Failed.

I didn't mention the problems you had because I didn't have any of them. I continue to fly the Pulse every time I go to the field, it's a great flying plane. I'm glad to see that you had a good experience with Horizon's customer service, though.

John

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