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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:00 AM
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AlteredState's Avatar
Joined Nov 2006
53 Posts
Retrieval methods for planes stuck up trees

I've decided to start this thread to find out what many of you have found as the best ways to get your planes out of really tall trees. When you can't climb the tree or when your pole just isn't long enough (no pun intended) let us know how you retrieved your plane in the end.

I found a new way just over the weekend. After two days of rescue attempts using the usual techniques my mate came up with this new technique. It took just 30 seconds and the Parkzone Radian was in my hands.

RC Parkzone Shotgun Crash (the Muzz...) (0 min 46 sec)
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:13 AM
AMA #953123
Eugene, ORYGUN
Joined Mar 2009
2,203 Posts
Fishing pole.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:18 AM
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xj35s's Avatar
Fulton, NY
Joined Mar 2008
216 Posts
I did that only I used a .22 with a scope to get my Kadet LT40 out of a thin tree 80 feet tall. It was hanging by the front wheel on a very thin branch. Came straight down like in the vid. wing leading edge damage from hitting the tree only.

Lost the prop mid air. almost made it over the trees to land in the road. almost.....
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:20 AM
You torquing to me?
slyfoxflyer66's Avatar
Vancouver, WA
Joined Mar 2010
610 Posts
Originally Posted by VROOMSTER View Post
Fishing pole.
That's what I used to get a lot of my planes out of trees all you need is a nice arm and a heavy lead weight.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 04:34 AM
An itch?. Scratch build.
eflightray's Avatar
South Wales U.K.
Joined Mar 2003
14,398 Posts
A club I once belong to had a team of trained budgerigars for getting planes out of trees, or off roofs.

They would have little work-mens tool belts strapped round them, with screwdrivers, (for removing wings), saws, (for removing small branches that were in the way), plus a winch and cable for lowering the model to the ground.

Oh come on. You didn't really think they picked it up and flew down with it, did you ? Crikey!, they're not that clever.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 05:37 AM
Registered User
Louisville, Ky
Joined Jan 2009
225 Posts
That video really makes me laugh. What state was this in? Im guessing Kentucky, georgia, or Alabama? I would have never thought of that. I just recently duct taped two 12 ft paint roller extensions together and my 8 ft catfish rod to the end of that. That gave me 32 ft, and then using my extension ladder, i can just about reach the top of a 50 ft tree, even though it is a bit scary standing way up the ladder, holding that long awkward plane poker.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 07:40 AM
Are we having fun yet?
paullie's Avatar
USA, NY, Clarence
Joined Jan 2010
386 Posts
Fishing Pole is part of my flight kit.

One particularly stuck plane was rescued by using a long length of rope with a foot long piece of 2 x 4 tied to the end. I tossed the 2 x 4 end up into the tree until it got wedged in the crook of some up high branches. This allowed me some decent leverage to shake the living h**l out of the tree. Plane came down. A couple of quick shakes of the rope freed the 2 x 4 (almost hit me on the head, heh) and it now is in the car as well.

Shotgun method is cool but would attract the wrong type of attention here.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 09:44 AM
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LesUyeda's Avatar
San Diego, California
Joined Dec 2004
3,939 Posts
"Fishing pole. "

With a rubber practice casting plug.

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Old Jan 07, 2011, 09:49 AM
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Gustavus, OH
Joined Oct 2007
490 Posts
A good friend of mine got his airplane out of a tree by buying a couple of those mylar baloons filled with helium, a fishing pole and a small hook made from a piece of coat hanger.

He just let the baloons rise up and controled them using the wind and the amount of line let out. He snagged the plane and pulled it loose.

Now the airplane just happened to be in a tree next to a cemetary. He got some strange looks walking across the cemetary, while a furneral was starting, carrying baloons reading "Get well soon!". They were all the store had.

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Old Jan 07, 2011, 10:39 AM
Fly, Crash, Cry...
hongrn's Avatar
United States, CA, Placentia
Joined Jun 2007
511 Posts
Crossbow, arrow attached to reel of fishing line. Shoot the arrow thru the fuse or wing, and yank down. Worked for me...
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:48 PM
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7rider's Avatar
USA, CA, Mountain View
Joined Dec 2007
933 Posts
For planes out of PVC pipe reach, I use a Chuckit! Ball Launcher and tennis ball with fishing line attached with duct tape to the ball. The Chuckit! can launch a ball very high, and once you get the ball around a branch close to the plane, tie a rope to the fishing line and run it up and around the branch to shake the plane loose. Using fishing line instead of rope initially attached to the ball allows you to get the ball a lot higher.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 01:58 PM
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Glacier Girl's Avatar
USA, FL, Lakeland
Joined Jan 2010
2,552 Posts
Yeah just remember bullets face gravity just like the birds.
You shoot up in the air, the bullet will come back down. Especially with bullets more danger exists.
Someone may not be too happy when your bullet finds them or their property.

Just like the twits who fire off guns for New Years.
Already read of one person this year who got hit from a bullet dropping out of the sky.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 03:26 PM
Registered User
United States, NJ, Frenchtown
Joined Mar 2003
9,503 Posts
We use.

With permission.

A chainsaw on small trees. Or a climbing belt & a hand saw on big trees.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 06:48 PM
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United States, CA, Garden Grove
Joined Oct 2000
12,530 Posts
I'd try a casting rod and reel with tennis ball and light line. For smaller trees a telescoping pruning saw with remote branch lopper and a good extension ladder may be needed. Don't fly where you have to dodge trees unless you can control your model really well.
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Old Jan 07, 2011, 11:08 PM
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Joined Jan 2009
7,643 Posts
It turns out one of my flying buddies has a friend... with a large bucket truck. Shy of that, there's a professional tree climber fellow we have on call, if need be. He's never failed us.

An eon ago when I was on the ski patrol, for use in emergency chairlift evacuation, we had a special air gun that could shoot a leader line up over the main chairlift line; with that, we'd pull up a proper rope with which to let down the chairlift passengers. Kinda like this. It says in the ad copy it can shoot the leader line up to 80 yards.

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