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Old Sep 19, 2009, 07:29 PM
Registered User
Frisco, TX
Joined Sep 2009
32 Posts
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First flight in over 6 years today

So I have been out of the hobby for a while, getting married, having a kid, other hobbies, etc...

A few weeks ago I bought a P51 PTS from a guy on craigslist, everything minus the transmitter for $100. Got everything setup and it finally quit raining here yesterday so I gave her my maiden flight today. I have been flying the plane on FS One for about a month now and have gotten good with it except even the one without flaps or droops still flys like a high wing trainer on there. I fully expected it to be more sensitive, but it is a huge difference in flight characteristics from the PTS in the Sim. I actually flies very much like the larger P51 150 model in the sim, I will use that one to practice from now on.

I have the Futaba 6EX 2.4, the plane was setup on low rates with a flap servo. Had about a 5-8 MPH wind out of the north. I have about a 50 acre field across the street from my house I flew it over. Sadly it is over grown with tall grass and is muddy so I had to use the road as my airstrip. The take off required much more right rudder than I had expected, but the plane flew very well. It has a 2 blade prop (previous owner) and the flap servo. It needed a little left Aileron trim (prob. a touch more) but with the wind I was not positive it really needed much more and I was flying nice and slow. I had my wife and kid behind me watching (20 month old boy obsessed with all of dad's hobbies), and two neighborhood boys who stopped riding their bikes to watch. I think I really should have gone off on my own as I was nervous enough as it was, and they were all trying to talk to me while I was flying it. I did not give into the request to do loops or rolls though, just kept it nice and simple and flew in circles getting to know the plane.

For the landing I brought it into the wind over the street (after making sure no cars were coming) and already had the flaps down in the downwind leg and through the turn. I did the turn around 25-30% power, then cut throttle to idle after leveling off. Even with no power, no droops (not included in purchase nor were the air brakes), flaps and into the wind it still flew great. No tendency to tip stall or anything. It was still flying pretty quick though and needed a long roll out to stop once on the concrete, but it was 100% successful and came out without a scratch. (this time)

I will admit though, on take off, my heart was RACING, I could feel it hammering my chest from the inside! That lasted almost the whole flight even though I told myself (out loud I think) to slow down and breathe once I got her up in the pattern. I forgot how nerve racking the first flight is and I am so glad I have been practicing on the sim as it was second nature but still very intimidating despite the low investment cost...

That was all I could take for one day, a perfect 5 min flight is a good day... maybe again tomorrow afternoon, it is beer time now!
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Old Sep 19, 2009, 07:35 PM
Larry Jasmann
Severna Park MD
Joined Jul 2008
462 Posts
Congratulations on coming back! Looks like your thumbs must have remembered something from before....

Have you looked for a RC club near to where you live so you have a better place to fly? I also find it to be much more enjoyable to fly with others .. and learn as much from watching others as i do from flying myself..\

L. Jasmann
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Old Sep 19, 2009, 07:38 PM
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EJWash1's Avatar
United States, WA, Hoodsport
Joined Mar 2008
5,318 Posts
Bird Dog,

Congrats and welcome back to the hobby.

I'm reading more and more about us that got into the hobby at a young age and go on hiatus from it as we raise our families. I've been back in the hobby for two years now after a twenty-two year break. Now that I'm older (in other words, more patient) I'm enjoying it all the more!

Thanks for sharing your reentry flight. I can relate...

EJWash
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Old Sep 19, 2009, 08:41 PM
I meant to do that
littlewing78's Avatar
Eagle Mountain, Utah
Joined Jul 2004
1,423 Posts
Like riding a bike isn't it? Good job.
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Old Sep 19, 2009, 09:05 PM
Registered User
Frisco, TX
Joined Sep 2009
32 Posts
Thanks guys, it was fun for sure... I don't think it was anything like riding a bike again, without my time on the sim I would have been screwed for sure! Once your nerves get going and the adrenaline is pumping you really need it to be second nature.

Looking forward to the next flight, should be a little easier I think.

As for an RC field, I have yet to rejoin the AMA (I know, save the lecture, I will join again...) and there is a field close by but they are not cheap and I don't think the wife will go for it... not yet anyways.
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Old Sep 20, 2009, 08:26 AM
Registered User
United States, CA, Paso Robles
Joined Jul 2007
40 Posts
I was out of the hobby for about 23 years. . . flew sailplanes then. This summer I started flying power planes. Flying skills came back pretty quickly. I agree with EJ. Now that I'm older and more patient, I enjoy the hobby more. Having a decent income now (unlike when I was a kid) doesn't hurt.
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Old Sep 23, 2009, 05:58 PM
Registered User
Frisco, TX
Joined Sep 2009
32 Posts
Well, second flight this afternoon... All went pretty well, landing was a little sketchy, but only cause I could not get the damn thing to stop on the concrete street. Actually, come to think of it... it was almost a perfect landing, right on the main gear, then the tail touched down. It just would not slow down anymore. I had the stick at idle, and was even trying to get the trim to go all the way back. The engine kill button had no effect either.

Sadly, it ended up stopping against the curb (my biggest fear flying from a street), but the only damage is very minor prop scratches on the ends of the blade. I am certain I could continue to use it, but I will replace with the spare one I have. Other than that, it was a very boring flight for most others. I was still very nervous and had to tell myself to breathe, but not near as bad as last time.

Does/Did anyone else get that very nervous feeling when flying? It makes no sense to me whatsoever... I am a logical person, and the feeling is all wrong! I have $100 in the plane, not much for this hobby and could buy another one if I kill it so the money is not the reason. I play lots of sports where I could get hurt or killed, I take my ZX10R out on the race track and do 150+ MPH regularly and never come close to getting nervous, even the first time... Hell, 6 years ago when I flew these things I was nervous (not as bad but still), I just don't get it!
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Old Sep 23, 2009, 07:02 PM
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EJWash1's Avatar
United States, WA, Hoodsport
Joined Mar 2008
5,318 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by bird_dog0347
Other than that, it was a very boring flight for most others. I was still very nervous and had to tell myself to breathe, but not near as bad as last time.
Of course it was - for them! They say NASCAR is popular because...

Quote:
Originally Posted by bird_dog0347
Does/Did anyone else get that very nervous feeling when flying?
I know that it's a burden to get to an established flying field, but I say get rid of the audience. Flying with peers is different than flying in front of those not in the hobby. Your peers will appreciate your flying, an audience wants to be entertained.

EJWash
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Old Sep 23, 2009, 08:38 PM
Registered User
Frisco, TX
Joined Sep 2009
32 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by EJWash1
Of course it was - for them! They say NASCAR is popular because...


I know that it's a burden to get to an established flying field, but I say get rid of the audience. Flying with peers is different than flying in front of those not in the hobby. Your peers will appreciate your flying, an audience wants to be entertained.

EJWash
No audience this time, at least not where I could see them, just the people driving by.
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Old Sep 23, 2009, 10:28 PM
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EJWash1's Avatar
United States, WA, Hoodsport
Joined Mar 2008
5,318 Posts
Oh, my bad, I took:
Quote:
Originally Posted by bird_dog0347
Other than that, it was a very boring flight for most others!
As there had gathered around while you were flying.

Yeah, I still get nervous now and then. Depends on the plane.

EJWash
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Old Sep 24, 2009, 08:24 AM
What goes up, will come down
Mulciber126's Avatar
ATL, GA
Joined Jul 2009
251 Posts
I haven't been flying for all that long, but I'd say I have about 30-50 flights under my belt and I get nervous almost every time, especially the first flight of the day being the worst. By maybe the 4-5 flight I might calm down but I still get the rush at time lol...I think that's partly what attracts me to it.
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