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Written by Tom Sullivan
A classic aircraft revisited.
Abridged review
Read the full review in the January 2015 issue of
Model Aviation.


Mention the name Kaos to any old-school modeler, and it will be immediately recognized as one of the cornerstones of early sport or Pattern designs. The Kaos family was designed by Joe Bridi and was first featured in the February 1970 issue of R/C Modeler. Many variations of the original Kaos came afterward, and I’m very excited to review the Tower Hobbies Kaos, which the company refers to as the Kaos 60 GP/EP ARF.

One constant throughout the Kaos series was the airfoil and basic wing design. These are credited with making the Kaos a gentle, easy flier at low speeds and an all-out aerobat when pushed. True to the original Kaos, this new ARF is sized for a .60-size glow engine, but has roughly 15% more wing area.

When taking the parts out of the box, I like to take some time to examine what makes up a review model. In the case of the Kaos, I found that the entire airframe is made from balsa and plywood. This construction is very light and rigid.

If you choose glow power, you can use the 420cc plastic fuel tank, which is preplumbed for a three-line system. If you want to try electric power, lightweight, laser-cut plywood parts are included to construct the motor mounting box. Regardless of the powerplant you use, you can streamline the looks with the included fiberglass cowl.


With the exception of the wooden electric motor box parts, everything you see here bolts together. If you build the Kaos as glow-powered airplane, you won’t need a drop of glue.


Flying

Because of the timing of this review, I didn’t have the luxury of waiting for a nice, sunny day for the maiden flight with the electric power system. It was windy—15 mph with a lot of gusts—but it was off to the field to see what would happen.

Bringing the Kaos in for the required photo passes, you can use whatever age-old catch phrases you’d like: it flew as if on rails, it grooves like a Pattern aircraft, or it flies like a dream. They’re all true. Even in the gusty winds, there was no problem placing the Kaos exactly where I wanted.

After the photos were complete, I took it up a bit to see if it flew the way I remember my original Kaos flying, and it does. The RimFire and 6S LiPo provide more than enough power to take the Kaos vertical and keep going until you decide to bring it back down to earth.

Comparing the glow experience is interesting. Although they don’t fly with the same propeller, both powerplants used the same size APC propeller—the 13 x 8E with the RimFire and 13 x 8 on the O.S. 65AX.

After I had had done some bench running on the O.S. 65AX to set the needles and get a decent idle, it was up in the air again. The flight characteristics are the same, with the exception of the vertical performance. The RimFire setup will easily outpull the 65AX, because the glow version will give plenty of vertical, but not unlimited vertical. Besides that, the two power systems don’t “feel” that much different.

Of course, there are the obvious differences, such as bringing the extra support equipment for the glow version (starters, fuel, pumps, etc.) and the cleanup afterward. Then there are the things that you really do miss such as the smell of burning glow fuel, which always brings back memories, and that thin trail of exhaust when the engine’s running slightly rich.


Conclusion

Regardless of what’s powering the Kaos, this model is exactly what it should be—a Kaos. It’s a great-flying machine that will fly hands off when properly trimmed. It’s just as at home flying Pattern maneuvers, everyday sport flying, or just cruising around the field. Tower Hobbies has done a great job of not only bringing back this legend, but also updating it in a few key areas.
—Tom Sullivan
tmsullivan@roadrunner.com


Video


Manufacturer/Distributor:

Tower Hobbies
(800) 637-6050
www.towerhobbies.com


Sources:

Tactic
(800) 637-7660
www.tacticrc.com

Castle Creations
(913) 390-6939
www.castlecreations.com

Kaos manual and addendum
www.towerhobbies.com/manuals/tow/towa2058_manual.pdf

www.towerhobbies.com/manuals/tow/towa2058_manual_add.pdf







2 comments

Flew my Kaos 60 for the first time .The engine stall on take off about two feet in the air. The nose gear pulled away from the firewall and plastic wing bolts broke. Firewall is balsa/ply construction. Wing bolts should be metal not plastic. This is a high stress area I found out later. Added wooden blocks to the firewall. I would recommend adding a short second spar in the rear of the wing to take the stress off the wing bolts.

Hello
I need help to know what are the best parts.
If I get a Kaos 60 what are the best servos and how many I need, what engine should I need, what are all the parts I need to be ready to fly.
Thank you I appreciate it if someone can help me

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