Simply Stated PHOENIX / AEA stands for PHOENIX / As-Electric-Assist. AEA is also the acronym for Aerial Experimental Association–our organization’s name. For some insight on why we chose this name see our web page titled Into the Air“.

The concept of the PHOENIX / AEA came about as a result of a need to rescue Older Model Airplanes we call Old-timers that were wasting away in basements and garages. So—having precisely that goal—we have recently formed the organization called the PHOENIX / Aerial Experimental Association (AEA) that addresses this situation. In addition the restoration process for these Old-timer model airplanes also involves the conversion from Rubber Powered to Electric Power, also known as Electric-Assist.

So whether you view us as PHOENIX / As-Electric-Assist—or the PHOENIX / Aerial Experimental Association, our organization will always be a dedicated group of people intent on seeing to it that Old-timers have a second chance or rebirth as a PHOENIX.

To find out more about our goals—visit PHOENIX / AEA Explained.

Panel 1

Follow an Old-timer’s PHOENIX Transformation

Meet a PHOENIX BIRD — the Altimeter-Hybrid.
Its PHOENIX CONVERSION has been documented in a web page on our Sister Site called KC Free

Follow the Amazing Journey by clicking on the link
PHOENIX Altimeter-Hybrid Conversion Process Revisited.
This page recounts its history, has restoration tips and features a Gallery/Slide Show of photos documenting the process.

The combined efforts of Suman Saripalli, Paul Morgenroth III, and Jeff Nisley went in to what we think was one of the Most Successful PHOENIX CONVERSIONS to date!

Panel 2

The PHOENIX Conversion Process

In a typical PHOENIX Conversion, the change over to Electric-Assist and the restoration procedures are usually done simultaneously.

Above is the Altimeter-Hybrid on Suman Saripalli’s work bench getting preliminary electrical work done in the spring of 2016.

Most PHOENIX Conversions will need a deliberate coordination of many factors to achieve success. Most often, not only do repairs need to take place—but sometimes updating some of the outdated features of the rubber powered version once considered essential—need to be removed or modified.

Weight reduction without sacrificing essential strength to the air frame is always a consideration. One of the key ingredients to the success of the final characteristics of the model aircraft is the proper selection of electronic components that make sense for the plane based on their weight and efficiency, and that they all work well in harmony with each other.

The electronic system encompassing the electric motor, ESC, battery, and servos with their corresponding control arms all need to be strategically installed in the right places for the plane to balance correctly. All these modifications will take place here—on the workbench. Getting it right makes all the difference in order to increase flight times.

Panel 3

Conversion to Electric-Assist is key to the Restoration

After Suman’s preliminary electrical conversion work, and the restoration work by Jeff Nisley (adding new tissue), Paul Morgenroth, III finishes the project by reducing weight where possible and adding exquisite tie rod detail work as shown above. It was truly a team effort!

One of the first things needed for the restoration is the addition of control surfaces so it can be controlled electronically. The selection of the correct combination of electronic parts makes this happen. The weight of the plane, it’s wing load, and other factors go into the choice of the system components and how they are installed.

Each Old-timer model airplane poses a unique set of circumstances and challenges so it is entirely true that the phrase “The whole is the sum of it’s parts” rings true in every case. It is entirely possible to make the plane better than it was originally. Ultimately it is how well all these factors come together that determines the relative success of a PHOENIX restoration.

For some—it is the goal to have the longest flight time for that given airplane model we are calling an Old-timer. Flight times of over an hour with a single charge of the battery is not unheard of. For others, just to relax and to watch the PHOENIX Bird majestically doing it’s thing in the sky having gone through a re-birth is satisfaction enough.

Panel 4

Meet the Converted PHOENIX Altimeter-Hybrid

What a great journey it’s been!

As a converted PHOENIX BIRD one now realizes that all the time spent and many hours of work was well worth it.

Follow along on the process this plane went through.

To see the PHOENIX Conversion of this plane, you can visit a web page that is located on our sister website called KC Free Flight, which is the website for the organization called HAFFA or Heart of America Free Flight Association. Go to PHOENIX Altimeter-Hybrid Conversion Process Revisited.

If you would like to become a member of THE PHOENIX / AEA organization visit our JOIN web page. If you would like to become a Contributing Writer of Posts for this site, go to our CONTACT page and leave your contact info and a short message. Your information will not be shared. Also don’t hesitate to inform the webmaster of any corrections of suggestions you may have about this site.

To get a better idea of who we are and our goals—be sure to explore all of our site’s links.

Oh—and if you like this site—tell your friends & modelers about us by sending them the URL . . . This would be much appreciated.