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The Pop Top

Discussion in 'How To- 3D Flying and Aerobatics Flying' started by njswede, Nov 17, 2012.

   
  1. njswede

    njswede 150cc

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    [H=1]Description of the maneuver[/H]
    A Pop Top is closely related to a [wiki=The Blender]blender[/wiki], but is performed in an up-line rather than a dive. It's essentially a vertical snap roll, followed by one or more turns of flat spin.

    Although the Pop Top is a manuever simple enough that a beginner can perform it after some practice, it has a great impact and will draw cheers from the audience if performed right.
    [H=2]Level of difficulty[/H]
    Medium
    [H=1]Performing the Maneuver[/H]
    The stick movements of a Pop Top are relatively simple, but it takes some practice to get the timing right. A Pop Top is typically entered from upright flight and although there are variations depending on the air frame, the following is a description of the typical stick movements.
    1. From upright flight, increase throttle to full and apply up elevator to enter an upline, carrying as much energy as possible..
    2. Almost immediately after the plane is put in an upline, give ample left aileron. The plane will enter a vertical roll.
    3. Immediately after the roll has started, apply opposite (right) rudder and down elevator to enter a snap roll. Also reduce throttle to near idle, to reduce the gyroscopic force and allow the plane to spin more freely.
    4. A split second after the snap roll has been established, being to reduce the down elevator and give some right aileron while continuing to hold right rudder.
    5. At this point, the plane should spin around the yaw axis for one or more turns. Some up elevator and throttle may be needed to keep the nose up.

    [H=2]Exiting[/H]
    Once the model stops spinning around the yaw axis, you may either simply fly it out by increasing throttle and neutralizing controls, or you can enter into a [wiki=The Harrier]harrier[/wiki] by applying up elevator and gently increasing throttle.
    [H=1]Common mistakes[/H]
    The biggest challenge is timing. It takes practice to get the timing right, but once you get it right, it pays off.

    Another common mistake is making the up-line too long and losing too much energy,
    [H=1]Tips[/H]
    Not all airframes perform pop-tops well. Under-powered models with large wing areas are typically difficult to make pop-top. The AJ Slick and EF Laser EXP are well-known for good pop-top performance. The EF [WIKI=The MXS]MXS[/WIKI] does incredible Pop Tops.

    One tip to get into a nice flat spin at the top, is to be quick with the aileron, do not leave input in or you will roll past the nice flat (parallel to the ground) spot. The plane will have enough energy to carry the revolution energy. Think bang bang with the aileron.
    [H=1]Videos[/H]
    Wamsy's pop top tutorial: http://youtu.be/Ji0UoD0sCs8
    [H=1]External Links[/H]
    www.3drcforums.com
     
  2. gyro

    gyro GSN Contributor

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    Excellent write up. This is by far my favorite maneuver that I'm able to do well consistently. My 64" MXS and 70" AJ Slick are Pop-Topping MACHINES!! Usually 3 complete flat spin revolutions are achievable with either plane. The tutorial by Wamsy is what helped everything click for me.
     
    thurmma likes this.
  3. njswede

    njswede 150cc

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    Well... Those who can't do teach, isn't that what they say? I can write about the perfect pop top, but I still have problems getting the timing consistent. But tomorrow looks like it's going to offer great flying weather, so I'll go practice!
     
  4. Steve_B

    Steve_B 70cc twin V2

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    Funny, I used to have pop-tops nailed but lately my timing gas gone off and half the time the plane ends up doing and end over end tumble (almost like a waterfall) rather than rotating on the yaw axis.. It looks quite cool actually but is annoying that I've somehow lost the knack. Last time out I put in some practice and seemed to be getting them a bit more consistent again though it's hard to put my finger on exactly where I was going wrong.
     
  5. One thing I have found that helps me is I have to get out of the aileron quick. Much quicker than you think.
     
  6. gyro

    gyro GSN Contributor

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    I agree Ray. Remember, you all can make edits to an article if you think your corrections improve it!
     
  7. Thanks Gary for the suggestion. I just tried to as an edit to the "Tips" section but it did not display after I clicked save. Also one thing that seems wrong or at least contradictory. In the edit mode there is a "Reason for Edit" and under that is says (Optional) but when you click save you get a message saying that "you must give a reason". I added one .
     
  8. gyro

    gyro GSN Contributor

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    You have to give a reason for an edit, and we (staff) have to approve some of the edits. This keeps spammers from editing the wiki with ads, or from people posting non-relevant or contradictory info. I'll take a look at your edit now :)
     
  9. Santi8

    Santi8 70cc twin V2

    Pop tops are a great low risk/ high reward move that's always a crowd pleaser. The transition from pop top into other tricks really sets this move off!
    On my 51" I like to do a big downline into the upline, pop top into a ke spin on the way back down. Always turns heads even though it's very easy to pull off once your timing is down.
     
  10. njswede

    njswede 150cc

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    I spent some time at the field today and I was trying to do pop tips with my laser. About one out of ten was decent. But the good thing about pop tops is that when you fail, you usually end up doing a really insane tumble, which looks kind of cool too...
     

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