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Old Jul 01, 2003, 10:03 AM
The Airplane Gremlin
Seared Ice's Avatar
United States, PA, Pittsburgh
Joined Jun 2003
388 Posts
Chosing Trainer...Kit?Plans?RTF?

I'm new to the hobby...but only in the sense that I havn't flown a "real" R/C plane yet. I have been playing with simulators, talking by email with some guys at the local club, am about to join the club, and I have been reading everything I possibly can. Just yesterday I read a 200 page book on what "newbies" should know about the hobby. It was called Take Off by Alex Weiss. I have spent about a month in these forums, and two or three in another forum site. As you can see, I'm pretty hooked on the hobby and I want a balsa, kit built trainer to start off.

Is kit-built my best option? I do not want to cut out my own parts like with plans but I do want to construct the model so I can repair when necessary. I do not want a RTF model because I want to pick out all my radio equiptment and as I have already said, I want to be able to know how to repair everything.

Also, I want to get a glow-powered model. I have compared electric and glow and my own ideas combined with the advice of the guys at the club I have decided that glow-power will be best to start with. What size engine should I go for...and which trainers are best for the engine size you recommend?

As for radio gear, I'm going to go for a Flash 5sx if after getting the model I cannot afford a better TX like the Futaba 9c...If I can get the model, servo, and rx cost around $175 then I'll be able to afford the 9c, tx only, with no shipping from an online store (trustable etc.).

I have about $420 to spend total for my first outfit so If you have any ideas just let me know. Oh, and I'll be getting another $30 from a couple babysitting jobs I have in a couple days.

Thanks for your time,
~John
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Old Jul 01, 2003, 10:51 AM
Registered User
N. Staffs, UK
Joined Jan 1997
5,654 Posts
When you're talking about planes I'm not sure why you missed out by far the largest category the ARFs. Almost all trainers sold are ARFs. There actually very few RTF (Ready to Fly) models. With an ARF you get to do some assembly and choose all your own radio gear etc. but they don't take nearly as long to put together as kits. There are loads of good trainers, mainly in the .40 size which is the most common.

If you really want a kit there aren't very many of them left. I think the Sig LT-40 is still available as either kit or ARF and that's an excellent trainer. Works great with a decent 40-46.

The cheapest way to buy your first radio gear is usually to get the complete set including Rx and servos. The standard versions that come with the Tx will be fine for a .40 glow trainer.

Good luck

Steve
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 08:30 AM
-=Futaba RuLEz=-
t_predator90's Avatar
Netanya, Israel
Joined Sep 2002
889 Posts
The best trainer in the "Hobbico Superstar 40" ARF (Almost ready to fly). It's comes pre-covered, and pre-cut. You basiclly (like with most ARFs) get it with the hull ready, 2 wing peaces that you have to join, tail, elevator, and the fuel tank, prop, spinner, and landing gear. All those peaces are ready-made and all you have to to are stick'em to the body. The rest (engine and radio) you buy and fit sepparatly. It is a very strong plane (Beleeeeeive me), and very sturdy, but also can be fast and slightly airobatic.
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 08:35 AM
God is good
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Banjul
Joined Jan 2001
4,246 Posts
I'd suggest the Hobbico Avistar ARF. Nearly 75% of our club's novices use this plane.

It has a semi-symmetrical wing and is very easy to fly.

Just my nickels worth.

VP
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 09:16 AM
-=Futaba RuLEz=-
t_predator90's Avatar
Netanya, Israel
Joined Sep 2002
889 Posts
Yea, the avistar is a good plane, but its not as sturdy, tough, and steady and the superstar. To me the avistar seems more like a plane for someone that has alreay a bit of experience with model airplanes. But for newbies it's to fast and cant take as many hits and crashes as the superstar. For instance, at my club, our runway is like an aircraft carieer, if you go to low behind the start of the runway, you'll smash into the side of the runway. A student was learning to land, and he managed to land it smack bang into that sandy pit, head first at 50% throttle. The only damage was a broken prop. Another student, with an avistar, landed hard, broke the gear, bounced, pulled up, and landed on the corner of his wing, breaking the wing in half.
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 10:41 AM
The Airplane Gremlin
Seared Ice's Avatar
United States, PA, Pittsburgh
Joined Jun 2003
388 Posts
Club Meeting

Last night I went to a club meeting of the club I'm 99% sure I'm going to join. I talked with the club president most of the time and he recommended that I either get the Tower Hobbies Tower Trainer 40 or the Great Planes PT-40 MKII. The PT setup (including all parts not included in kit) is cheaper than the Tower Trainer setup (inc. all parts not included in kit). I'm pretty sure I want one of those two...I take real-time person-to-person advice over internet advice anytime (no offense...your advice is good but I would rather have someone I can call up and show stuff to at the flying feild that will know the answers for that particular plane because perhaps they learned on it or whatever). With my $450 I can just fit in everything I need to start off...all I'll have to pay for in my next plane is the plane itself and maybe new electronics if I can afford it(I might just switch it over).

~John
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 12:04 PM
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N. Staffs, UK
Joined Jan 1997
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Re: Club Meeting

Quote:
Originally posted by Seared Ice
I take real-time person-to-person advice over internet advice anytime (no offense...).
Very sensible though it would have been nice of you not to bother asking the questions if you weren't interested in the answers. People don't necessarily enjoy wasting their time typing all that stuff out.

Good luck with whatever you choose.

Steve
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Old Jul 02, 2003, 04:43 PM
The Airplane Gremlin
Seared Ice's Avatar
United States, PA, Pittsburgh
Joined Jun 2003
388 Posts
I ask questions to get a feel for the different types of models and transmitters...your words influence what I pick. What I meant to say is that real-time person-to-person advice just weighs-in more. I appreciate all you people do (especially putting up with newbie questions) but I would like to have people in real life, that as I said that I can call and talk to one-on-one and have them actually point to stuff on my model, not just type out an explaination or draw arrows onto a picture using a paint program. I am sorry if you guys feel you have wasted your time on me and next time I'll think about my questions more before asking
~John
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Old Jul 03, 2003, 12:14 AM
-=Futaba RuLEz=-
t_predator90's Avatar
Netanya, Israel
Joined Sep 2002
889 Posts
Thats ok, Ice. I didn't waste my time, or "put up with your newbie questions". I can fully understand what you meen about the real-time person-to-person advice. In-fact, Steve, I think you should be a-bit more understanding. All he was doing was getting ideas on what he should do.
Anyway, thh tower trainer and the PT-40 are good, but not as strong as the superstar (I'm begining to feel like a Hobbico salesman...). Plus, you can get the superstar for about $90. So, it's up to you! Enjoy you'r new hobby!
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Old Jul 03, 2003, 09:19 AM
The Airplane Gremlin
Seared Ice's Avatar
United States, PA, Pittsburgh
Joined Jun 2003
388 Posts
The PT-40 kit is 64.99 from tower hobbies...plus radio and engine is around 265.31 dollars...all i have to buy extra is 48.49 worth of stuff like wheels, spinner, fuel tank, covering material for a total of 298.80. Then construction and feild equiptment to come out to around 393.14! Prices as of July 3 with $30 off because of the two orders of $150+ i can divide it into...plus some savings for buying things in larger quantity and as combos with other items.

I'm happy that I can make this fit under $400 but I'm going to ask some of the guys at the club about what stuff I'll want to invest in at the beginning because I really have around $50 more to spend on whatever extra...i just wanted to keep the basics below $400

thanks again for your advice,
John
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Old Jul 06, 2003, 12:56 AM
-=Futaba RuLEz=-
t_predator90's Avatar
Netanya, Israel
Joined Sep 2002
889 Posts
Do you have a booster? spare prop? spare glow plug? Starter?
Oh, by the way, you said the plane is $65, plus around $50 for hardware (wheels, spinner, ect.)? The superstar is not only pre-covered, it also comes with all the hardware, and for $20 less, wich meens that you have extra ca$h for stuff like a starter.
Keep us informed on how you get along!

Erez
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Old Jul 06, 2003, 07:59 AM
God is good
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Banjul
Joined Jan 2001
4,246 Posts
Most newbs don't realize how much it costs to set up tools to make a kit into a plane. Probably close to $150 all in all.

The expenditure can be spread out over several kits, though.

ARF's are really a good deal for proce if you don't have the building tools.

VP
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Old Jul 06, 2003, 06:57 PM
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Overland park, KS
Joined Jul 2003
9 Posts
Well I'm a newbie also, and there are several ARF kits that come complete with radio, engine and all the accessories that are needed to get to fly. The choice of how much you want to work to fly is a personal one. I flew U-control for years and found that many newbies gave up after spending all that time building the plane , took it out the first time cracked up and got out of flying. My personal idea is don't become personal with your plane, because everyone cracks up sooner than later. Its one of the laws of flying, if you fly you crash. BTW, some of the ARF that are a package cost in the 300-350 total out lay, then of course you have fuel, props, glow starters etc, good luck Ice.
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Old Jul 06, 2003, 07:46 PM
The Airplane Gremlin
Seared Ice's Avatar
United States, PA, Pittsburgh
Joined Jun 2003
388 Posts
Thanks for the good luck wish

I'll be going to the feild to finalize my plans with some club members...I'm sure I'm gonna get a kit but I'm not sure which construction and feild tools I need exactly.

What is U-Control?

~John
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Old Jul 06, 2003, 08:34 PM
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Overland park, KS
Joined Jul 2003
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U-control is where the plane is on wire, and it goes around and around in a circle. The engine is wide open and you do what ever stunts you have learned. figure 8's, inverted flight, loops, out side loops, touch and goes, and lots of other things.

RC lets you fly away from your self and do more stunts after you have learned to fly and have moved up in plane type size or whatever direction you have chosen. You have more freedom to explore your abilities, change direction of type of planes you want to build.

Remember something Ice, it costs money to fly planes. Tools, fuel, engines, radio gear, props, all cost money. Few people will want you to be bumming fuel or starters or anything else. When I flew U-control there were always someone that had the habit and wanted everyone else to pay for their habit. OP's, other peoples , money is always cheaper on your pocket book.
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