Dan's Tool and Toy Reviews

Tools to Make Home Improvement Easier & Toys to Make Life More Fun

The Harbor Freight Yellow Bee RC Airplane

Harbor Freight Yellow Bee – where do I begin talking about this RC airplane other then to say that it is awesome. It is sturdy, strong, versatile, and cheap. The normal price for it is $40 at Harbor Freight but you Harbor Freight Yellow Bee RC Airplanecan usually get it for $30. Just about every part is replaceable by calling Harbor Freight but you can usually get wing assemblies (front and rear come in the package) for $10.

 I had been eyeing this baby for a while and for Christmas this year my dream of having one came true thanks to my lovely wife.

My wife had originally gotten me a Horizon Hobby Night Flyer from Radio Shack and took one look at it and knew that once I crashed it that it would never fly again. I took it back to RS and took the money to Harbor Freight to get a Yellow Bee.

My First Flight

At first when I tried to get it to fly it would barely climb and then go down and to the left. I could not get it to turn right. I tried trimming it a little with the left propeller spinning constantly. I got it to fly but the sun had already gone down and I ran it into a light pull for the baseball field I was at.

I broke the right wing off right where the motor is located.

Some Repairs and Adjustments

I took it home and threw some packing tape on it and reread the instructions on how to adjust the plane. I noticed that the propellers did not line up with each other and were tilted to the right a little which was causing the plane to go to the left. I thought about getting the grinder out to try and get them lined up but decided to try the adjustments in the instructions first.

I ended up loosening the rear screw on the rudder assembly so that it would provide some more lift. I also adjust the left rear wing of the rudder assembly.

My Second Flight

So after my wing repair and adjustment I took it back to the park even though it was dark (I am a 30 year kid – what can I say?). I found a grassy area near the tennis courts at the park that was illuminated.

 The only issue was that there where electrical towers over it (not pools but the tall ones that look like erector sets). I really did not think that this would be an issue since they were pretty high and I had not seen it get that high before.

This time the take off was completely different as the bee shot straight up into the sky. I had to back off the throttle so it didn’t go too high. This time it was flying nice and straight and I could turn in both directions.

I had been flying it for a couple of minutes when I was doing a turn and climbing at the same time and hit the electrical cable. There weren’t any sparks or anything but the poor bee went into a flat spin and hit the ground. So much for “it won’t go that high!”.

Assessing the Damage

I ran over to get it and their weren’t any burn marks on it but it was unresponsive. I had my brother-in-hold it while I tried cycling the power on and off on both the plane and the controller. At one point the plane turned on but would not respond to the controller. It was toast.

Going Forward

The only thing that I can say that I am disappointed in is my ability to fly without crashing into pools and electrical lines. The Yellow Bee held up in both situations pretty well considering what I put it through.

I am planning on purchasing another Yellow Bee and will use the first one for parts as I am sure there are plenty more crashes to come in the future.

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