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Old Jul 27, 2012, 09:39 PM
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Australia, NSW, Sydney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C₄H₁₀ View Post
People aren't willing to read three pages of an RCG thread to find the specific information they're looking for. Heck, a lot of them can't even seem to figure out how Google works.

Maybe a small minority of new folks will be interested in plopping down and going through 86+ pages to learn the basics, but I feel that the vast majority will find it quicker and easier to bang out their questions on RCG and get answers that relate directly to what they want to know.

--------

#8K
Almost any answer (except perhaps the origin of life) is available on Google. Most of Gen Y would have done their graduations without reading a single book. You don't have to remember much, think much just "Google it". But it is more fun interacting with real people even on a forum! You get to be passionate, giving, needy, egoistic, stupid, have your faux pas moments and to be human. So yes I love to ask the forum for questions.
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Old Jul 27, 2012, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Rockin Robbins View Post
...But all that good info does nothing to disguise the character of the purveyor. My spider senses tingled there first. That's my test site. They tingle the same way reading our present guy's posts. Might be a character defect on my part.........or not.
I know you give good advice, but... I didn't get a tingling (did I just say that?) from paging thru the doc or the google site. The site or document to a lesser extent is just not that developed yet.

You should let us know what your issue is, instead of railing on the author over many posts. You seem like a bad guy in this context.
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Old Jul 27, 2012, 10:43 PM
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Or maybe present the issues with bullet points. He did say he was going for low cost planes.
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Old Jul 28, 2012, 01:29 PM
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28 July 2012

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Originally Posted by Rockin Robbins View Post
Crap! Now you've done it: brought up that name...... It was the same deal. Info that nobody else had. Come to his website and learn the truth they don't want to tell you. Great info here! Check it out!!! I really don't know any normal people that present themselves that way and it makes me nervous. Maybe that's a character defect of mine, could be.

Alright gentlemen (speaking to everyone, not to RR directly), I'm not quite sure where to start here. After reading all the spiteful accusations on a couple of my threads I just let it go for several days, but I think I should make an attempt to address some of it. I tried to write a good, accurate paper, and though a few seem to appreciate my efforts, I'm getting a lot of discouraging remarks as well. I'd never heard of Z8RC prior to reading these threads, but it seems he and I don't have much in common after finding a thread or two he once posted in....

Ok, next item. I don't have any info nobody else had. I've cited sources for where I get most of my info in the paper, and I've explained it. Almost all of it is well-known info by most experts, that I've gotten through experience, and talking to other experts, or reading expert opinions online, and then verified through experience or talking to more experts. In other words, I've verified it through multiple sources, or in a few cases am seeking verification as we speak. Nothing is exclusively mine. That would be ridiculous to claim that. I don't make that claim.

As for the comment, "I really don't know any normal people that present themselves that way and it makes me nervous..." That's fine. I don't claim to be normal. I'm not the average guy, and I don't do the average things. Average people don't do 400 hrs of research and write a free eBook just for fun. My wife can attest that I'm "not quite normal." Average people also aren't Eagle Scouts, don't dedicate themselves for 2 years of unpaid religious service after their first 2 years in college, don't do 5-7 hours of homework every night through college while instructing people to fly full-scale gliders "on the side," and don’t get full-ride scholarships to go to grad school. Please don’t misread this, however: I don’t feel or claim to be better than others and I just want you to know that. I do, feel, however, that I have something to offer people, and through experience and dedication, I can eventually offer a lot more.

I know I'm just a name online, so here's a brief intro to who I am:
I am 27 years old. I've lived in many different places throughout the nation; I fluently speak English (native language) and Spanish. I've visited other places in the world and seen extremely poor people. It makes me sad. I see what I have and I feel blessed. I admire a rare breed of people like Destin, from his YouTube channel “Smarter Every Day” (see
TEDxYouth@Huntsville - Destin - See the World Differently, Get Smarter Every Day (10 min 44 sec)
and
Operation Rocket - Smarter Every Day 39 (4 min 23 sec)
). As Destin teaches, I strive to be a Thinker, and I strive to be a Doer.

I have also come to realize through these posts…as I think about what I'm saying and why I'm saying it, and what others are saying, that there exists an incorrect assumption on both our parts. My assumption is that since I have very little money to spend on RC, so do other people. Some of your assumptions I believe are that since you have quite a bit of money to spend on RC, so do I. Let me help you see my perspective.

When I was 3 years old I wanted an airplane. I spent hours sitting in my little room "folding" paper airplanes, and making as many designs as I could. My wonderful mother didn't know how to make good planes and neither did I, so I crumpled up pieces of paper into airplane-like shapes and threw them. I remember one special plane I had where I had squeezed a thumb and forefinger mark into the bottom of it, so that I could remember just where to hold it to make it fly the best. When I threw it, it would do quick spiraling rolls as it flew a roughly parabolic trajectory. That was my favorite plane of all. I put that plane in a special cupboard where I had my couple-dozen favorite planes. One day my mom cleaned my room and through away the “trash” in my cupboard. She didn’t know those were my special planes.

When I was 5 years old I wanted an RC airplane. My older brother (10 at the time) brought home a Tower Hobbies annual catalog and I was fascinated by the airplanes. My allowance was ~$5 a week for dumping the house trash and taking it out to the burn-pile at the bottom of the hill from our little mountain house out in the middle of nowhere. I was required to tithe 10% of my allowance, save 70%, and I could put 20% into a special “Spendings Jar.” While growing up, if I wanted an item, I could write it on the calendar (or have my mom write it when I couldn’t write) and two weeks later, if I still wanted it, I could use my money to buy it. There were five kids in my family and we lived in a dumpy little government-subsidized housing area until my dad finished college in his early thirties while working two jobs, going to school full time, and raising 5 kids.

My dad also paid each of us younger kids (Elementary School and Middle School) $5 an A on a report card, and a $10 bonus for straight A’s. In high school it became $10 an A on a report card, and a $25 five-A bonus. He told us from the time we were little that if we wanted good jobs we needed to do well in school and get scholarships in college so we wouldn’t have to struggle though college like he did. In high school he also gave us a one-time $500 bonus for (if I remember correctly) getting straight A’s more than 2 years in a row.

When I was 9 years old I began understanding that my allowance wasn’t ever going to be enough to buy an RC airplane like I wanted since age 5. I began creating a plan to buy a plane. I told my buddy I was going to buy a $500 airplane with my own money someday and he chuckled. Shortly after that my dad told each of us kids that if we spent $100 of our own money to buy a calf, he would hand-build stalls for it and he would pay for the majority of the costs to raise it, but we could keep the profit when it sold. We each bought a calf for $100, and he bought an additional four or five for the family money. I got up each day with my brothers and sisters around 5:30 am to bottle-feed the calves, collect the chicken eggs, and feed the other animals. After 18 months we sold the cows we raised, as pregnant “Springers” to dairy farmers, for something more like $1200-$1500 (if I remember right). My dad subsidized the majority of the fees, but we still had to pay several hundred to help with the costs.

When I was 11 years old, I told my dad I was ready to buy an RC airplane, like I had wanted since I was 5. This was the year 1996. He found a nice man at work (in his mid 60’s) who did RC a lot for fun, and could help me. This man’s name was Don, and I will forever be grateful for him. He got out his Tower Hobbies catalog and helped me pick the Tower Trainer 40 airplane, an OS 0.46 FX engine, a $180 6-ch Airtronics non-computerized radio, and the necessary other supplies. $550 and three months later after painstakingly figuring out how to put an ARF together, I was in the air flying every weekend I could convince my dad to drive me the 1.5 hrs to the flying field. The club I joined charged over $50 a year to be a member, and I couldn’t afford it. Since the next youngest guy in the club was 30+, however, they gave me a special “youth” discount where I got free membership for helping with the field upkeep every now and then.

….Until the year 2010, when I was 25 years old, and a senior in college (studying guess what??? Aeronautical Engineering) that equipment I bought at age 11 remained my only aircraft equipment I had ever owned, other than a few Airhogs brand, or similar, free-flight and 2-Ch airplanes I had bought along the way as well. At age 25 by the way, I still didn’t have the money to buy another plane like I had purchased at age 11 (since I badly needed a cycling charger and 2.4 Ghz radio too), and I was studying so hard I hardly had the time to even get that plane out to fly it, dealing with the hassle of glow fuel and all, though I did have it with me at college. As a matter of fact, at age 27 (28 July 2012), sitting here writing this, that plane is still hanging on the wall behind me. A good, faithful aircraft I’ve had the majority of my life now—and by the way, if I had the money, I’d convert it to electric.

So, at age 25, just about a month prior to graduating college, as we looked to our futures with more free time, a buddy of mine in my Aeronautical Engineering major decided he wanted to buy a real RC airplane too, instead of just having our little $30 electric toys from Target (he and I had each bought one of those together). He did some research and discovered Nitroplanes.com. I had never heard of Nitroplanes. The only RC distributor I knew of at the time was Tower Hobbies. When I saw how low the prices were on Nitroplanes I was absolutely blown away! I couldn’t believe that someone could by a Ready to Fly electric aircraft, with battery, (cheap) charger, (cheap) 72 Mhz radio, etc ALL for only $99 + shipping!!! Comparing those prices to Tower Hobbies, who still would have charged $350 for that same equipment, I was absolutely stunned and in disbelief. Meanwhile, knowing my ancient NiCad batteries might be bad and needed to be cycled, I got on Tower Hobbies and bought a much-needed charger/cycler (the Electrifly Triton 2 eq) for ~$225 with shipping and adapter cables. I thought I was getting the best charger out there (since it’s the best on Tower Hobbies) for a good price. (Boy was I wrong!!! It turns out it’s an ok charger, with a few bugs and poor functionality, for a horrible price). I would have been better off buying an iCharger, or even a $40-50 Chinese charger like this one (http://www.xheli.com/thunder-ac6-charger-power.html).

Anyway, my buddy received his plane, and it was the Dynam 3-Ch EZ Hawk (http://www.nitroplanes.com/ezhael4chrtf.html). It turned out to work AWESOME, and had no radio glitches, no servo problems, great motor and ESC, etc, and nice, durable EPO foam. He had it together in a couple hrs, with my help, and up and flying the day after receiving it. To cut this part short, I loved his plane, he loved his plane, and he learned to fly with it without a buddy box, and with only guidance and pointers from me. He had a couple straight in-crashes, including one where the wing fell off 200 ft off the ground, and the EPO foam was so durable that it was repaired and ready to fly again in only 1 hr after each serious crash. This was *not* the case with my Tower Trainer 40. I had a couple serious crashes and it was a mess to fix.

I was hooked, so I bought 2 RTF airplanes from Nitroplanes, for $85 and $99, respectively, followed by my first nice radio (a 2.4 Ghz Futaba 7C: http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...?&I=LXTTM1&P=0), and since that moment, I have been so heavily involved in RC that sometimes it’s all I can think about. However, money is still a big issue. After a couple more big, extremely satisfying purchases of stuff I still consider to be very high quality, from HobbyKing, after graduating, I had to cut my RC budget drastically again, and at the present time it remains at $40/month.

That’s right, I am a newly-wed now, with a little baby girl on the way in a few months, and my personal budget is $40/month. Let me clarify, that is *not* just for RC, but it is for *anything* that is not a necessary purchase. If I want a new pocket knife, that comes from my $40/month budget. If I want a screwdriver or boards to build shelves for my planes, that comes from my $40/month budget. I currently am trying to build a portable charge-box, so I bought a $7 tupperware from Walmart, and I need some small computer fans from ebay, and a $20 sheet of plexiglass from Home Depot, and guess what? That’s my $40 budget for August. Boom, gone, just like that.

So, in summary, when people say, “go buy the HorizonHobby _______, or the Parkzone ________, or the Tower Hobbies/Great Planes/Hobbico/Electrifly _______”, I say to myself, “I can’t afford that.” Instead, I’ll go buy the Nitroplanes, Bannanahobby, or HobbyKing ______ for 1/4 to 1/2 the price (WITH SHIPPING), and I’ll deal with the poor customer service, the long shipping times, and the things I have to fix, in order to get the good deals and be able to afford a plane in 3 months rather than 9 months—when in the end I can have an *excellent* quality plane for way less money. Also, I’d like to add that if you do a side-by-side comparison, even with $30-$40 shipping prices on HobbyKing for a large plane, the plane is still cheaper on HobbyKing than other places. Other places may charge only $2 shipping, but the plane (foam only, no electronics) is $100. HobbyKing may charge $40 shipping, but the plane (foam only, is $20). So, total price: some other place: $102, good customer service, fast shipping. HobbyKing: $60, poor customer service, slow shipping. I save $42 by waiting a little longer and getting the expertise to choose parts well and fix things. Big deal.

Now, adding in the price of electronics. Here’s another example: some other place, $350 total for a plane with electronics, and including shipping. When you go through HobbyKing though, through careful selection, patience with shipping, and making a few minor tweaks, you get the *same quality plane* for $150 including all electronics and shipping. So, $350, or $150. If you have the money, choose $350 to avoid tweaks, but if you are like me, and don’t, choose the $150 to save money, and learn to be patient and do the tweaks.

$150 or $350, for ultimately the same plane, even including all parts and shipping: the choice is yours.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Now, let me say just a little more about why I promote the cheaper products. If you look at my “Beginner Airplane Setup” document (https://sites.google.com/site/electricrcaircraftguru/) you will see that I don’t have more expensive options. I apologize for that. I am in the process now of collecting information to make a separate document which includes more expensive options for those who have the money. However, here is why I currently do NOT have those more expensive options:
1) I made this document for kids, with little money. In December 2011 I did an RC presentation to a group of young men (11-18 year olds) at my church. When they asked how much it costs, I said, “it depends, but anywhere from $150 - $550 to get started, with *everything* you need” [including charger, radio, motor, ESC, batteries, glue, screwdriver, tape, etc]. Their eyes dropped. They looked sad. I said, “can you afford $300 or more?” No responses. “How about $150?” A few responses. I told them that if they wanted, I could point them to planes that would be affordable for them, but they would have to deal with poor customer service, and slow shipping. Ultimately that would mean I would need to help them, so I said I would. That weekend I took them flying and got them in contact with the local club, as well as gave them the document found here: https://sites.google.com/site/electricrcaircraftguru/. That is what inspired this document.
2) In May 2012 I flew my little 3D Hawk plane (from Hobbyking for under $100 total with plane, motor, ESC, 3 batteries, connectors, props, Rx, *and shipping*) at a campout with my local church group. In a few minutes I had about a dozen little boys (3-16, but mostly around 10) all around me asking questions and wanting to fly. I got out my buddy box and let them fly. They loved it. When they asked how much it costs to get started, again, I tailored to their needs and told them I could help them get started if they wanted for ~$150 total. I had a few interested at that price, and none interested for more money.
3) In June 2012 I gave a presentation to a group of ~30 local Civil Air Patrol cadets (again, young Middle-school to high-school aged kids). Again, after seeing my equipment they wanted to know how to get started. I gave them my document and contact info and said I’d help them.

Lastly, am I trying to drag people away from RCGroups? Absolutely not, but I need a one-stop location for me to update a document easily. Now, I may not be on RCgroups much in the meantime, because I am busy and have many things to take care of around the house, including finishing repairs on a $25 used, beat-up dresser I just bought for my unborn little girl. I still need to finish gluing/screwing parts back together, then I need to sand it and refinish/paint it. And why was it $25, instead of the $250 one my wife and I like the most? Well, because we don’t have the money. Sorry, I’m 27 and newly married, and paying for a new baby, some debt, and my wife’s school. It’s not easy. The $40 RC budget is discouraging to say the least, but it is just enough to help keep me sane.

And as for my experience, how can I know anything with only 2 ½ years being back in the hobby? Well, the answer is listening, listening, listening, talking talking talking, flying flying flying, being open minded and learning, learning learning. Look at my document. I feel it is pretty accurate information and useful, though detailed, or it wouldn’t be there. The technical aspect of RC absolutely fascinates me as much as the flying aspect, and I love it. I love sharing what I know, and I’m not joking when I say I’ve done 400+ hours research in this 2 ½ years. I am not getting paid for any of this; I am not associated with any RC company or product, period.

Decide for yourselves what to believe, but like Destin (referenced above) inspires me and others to do, I desire to be a Thinker and a Doer, not just a Talker, and certainly not a Basher, Criticizer, Naysayer or Nitpicker.
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Old Jul 28, 2012, 02:12 PM
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Joined Dec 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockin Robbins View Post
He also misrepresents the price! A full-boat Champ is $99.00. Beat that with a Bixler! You really can't. Because you have to buy a radio to fly the Bixler. .
Actually, the Champ is even cheaper than you say: the Champ is $89 not $99 (http://www.horizonhobby.com/products/champ-rtf-HBZ4900). Add $8.97 shipping and you get a good little 3-channel airplane for ~$98. Also, please update your info. I rarely if ever buy anything from HobbyKing's US Warehouse. It is understocked, and really doesn't save much (if any) money to order from it since prices in their Hong Kong warehouse are lower. Have you even looked at my document? probably not. Open it up, click on the link I have for the Bixler, and you will find it brings you to this webpage here: (http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...dProduct=16542). Notice please that it comes with a Radio and Receiver. It is $107.25 if you are not logged in, but it is only $101.48 if you are logged in (my document says to log in first to get the best price). Now, shipping for just this item is $36.54. That makes a total of $138.02 for a large, powerful, fully functional 4-Ch plane that yes, may need a few tweaks.

Now ask yourself, is that really comparable to a HobbyZone Champ? Well, not really. ***Though the Champ is an EXCELLENT beginner plane****, it lacks ailerons, is too light and gentle to advance a great deal on, and is a micro 1S LiPo setup. A comparable plane to the Bixler would be something more like the Parkzone Radian (http://www.horizonhobby.com/products/radian-rtf-PKZ4700) which, though 43% larger than the Bixler in wingspan, is comparable in design and uses the same battery pack. However, even still, I’d recommend the Bixler over the Radian for design alone (IF someone has an experienced modeler to put them on their buddy box to train them) since: The Bixler is 4-channel with Aileron control, and the Radian is 3-channel with no ailerons. Also, the Radian is $249.99 + $13.50 shipping, for a total of $263.49, or $125.47 more than the Bixler. You could *almost* buy 2 entire RTF Bixlers (WITH HobbyKing's $36.54 shipping on each plane) for the price of 1 Parkzone Radian.

Through carefully watching the HorizonHobby and TowerHobbies websites, I would argue that those websites are 2 years behind in technology even, from websites such as Nitroplanes and HobbyKing. Horizon and Tower have great customer service, yes, but prices are not comparable at all (when comparing similar aircraft), and many of their planes are out of date. The EasyStar that HorizonHobby sells (http://www.horizonhobby.com/products...r-rtf-MPU13203), for instance, has a garbage radio and still uses NIMh batteries. The SkyScout that Horizon is about to start selling (http://www.horizonhobby.com/products...o-rtf-HRC13207) is also $125.47 more than the Bixler. So, again, my argument is simple: Bixler (when tweaked by expert) = better plane than comparable HorizonHobby plane, for $125.47 less. Or, as my document also links to, the Nitroplanes Hawk Sky (http://www.nitroplanes.com/60a-dy892...y-rtf-24g.html) is $109 + $18.90 shipping (for $127.90 total) and with NO tweaks, is better than the comparable HorizonHobby plane, for $135.59 less, so...for the price of the HorizonHobby plane, why not just buy a Bixler *and* a Hawk Sky and give one to your buddy to help you each get started.....under the watchful eye of a trainer,...using a buddy box system and having the experienced trainer check over your plane prior to flying.
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 09:36 AM
buyer of the farm
United States, FL, DeLand
Joined Mar 2009
4,050 Posts
Panther;
I appreciate two things. First I appreciate that you actually took a step back to formulate a thinking response instead of a rash reaction. That's a good sign. And you took some time to explain yourself, telling something of who you are and what you are about: what life experiences resulted in the positions you take in your paper. That completely breaks you from the mold of that Z8 guy we were talking about earlier. You also are completely devoid of catastrophic economic prophesies, a refreshing difference. So I am happy to be shown wrong. You are no Z8. You are a rational human being with a lot of drive and ability. Those are rare, you know.

You asked a very good question that goes to the heart of what a beginner needs to succeed, "Now ask yourself, is that really comparable to a HobbyZone Champ? Well, not really. ***Though the Champ is an EXCELLENT beginner plane****, it lacks ailerons, is too light and gentle to advance a great deal on, and is a micro 1S LiPo setup. A comparable plane to the Bixler would b..."

First we have to separate out the unassisted newbie from one with advice only, to one with hands-on buddy box expert assistance. That has some bearing on what is appropriate to recommend. If we are talking about the unassisted newbie, no, the Bixler is not comparable to a Hobby Zone Champ. The Champ is a flyable plane and the Bixler is not. It is a large, impressive looking collection of future (and not very far in the future) garbage. The newbie, having no building or repairing skills, having no aerodynamic judgment, will just toss this thing in the air as is and make a smoking hole. End of hobby.

The guy with advice might just get away with fixing the Bixler so it's flyable. He might be very lucky and find himself able to fly a 4-channel plane. But one thing we know for sure about beginners--he will damage his plane. When he does so, he will find no replacement parts available from Hobby King. Typically he will be dealing with stripped servos, broken foam with pieces missing, hardware replacement, hinge rebuilding, motor remounting, etc. Each guy with advice will only get so far before he, too has a new hobby.

The guy with active hands-on help from an expert who is willing to give him flight instruction will do fine. The expert will coach him through the several airframe mods that the Bixler needs, the expert will buddy-box him and the newbie will learn to fly. He won't hurt the equipment so much because the expert can snatch his cookies out of the fire.

But that third guy can learn with ANY plane. He could be just as successful with a Parkzone T-28, parkflier size. At that level there is nothing special about the Bixler and no reason to recommend it over just about any plane in the universe.

Let me propose to you the original third-world way of learning to fly RC. I say this because the United States was a third-world country between the 1930's and 1950's (actually early 1960's) as far as consumer behavior was concerned. We would have laughed at the proposition that families own more than one car, that houses be air conditioned (even in Florida!), that houses would be larger than 1,000 square feet for just about any size family. Food accounted for more than 50% of the average family's income. Today food costs less than 10% for comparison. Somebody says this is the worst economy ever? Sneer in their general direction. Oh, yeah, those 3rd world citizens were happy and had no idea that they were deprived.

In those ways there was a path to RC. First you learned to build stick and balsa free flight airplanes covered with tissue. These taught you balance, trim, what makes a plane happy, what makes it unhappy. You learned to build a plane that would take off, make right circles under power and when the rubber was exhaused the plane would make left circles. That way it didn't fly away so fast. It was a balancing act between rudder trim and motor torque. There were a dozen other things you learned, but the most important thing you learned was that the plane knew how to fly itself and you could teach it.

No electric motors in those days and that was a big barrier that is gone now, thank goodness. But after you have learned to fly and learned aerodynamic principles that keep a plane flying THEN it's appropriate to build a plane for a radio and electric power. It would be essentially a radio ASSISTED free flight airplane. Just give her the power and she takes off. She flies herself so you are just guiding, not flying. The plane is flying. You know--to a greater or lesser extent that is true for any plane the pilot will ever fly.

The advantages of this method are first, that the learner has taught himself the aerodynamic principles of flight. He KNOWS how to balance a plane. He KNOWS that small deflections of control surfaces go a long way, he KNOWS that the plane knows how to fly without his help. He has building experience, repair experience, aerodynamic analysis experience, he is a success before his thumbs ever touch the sticks. You know what? He knows that even if he forgets to turn the radio on he'll get the plane back. (what am I saying, the electric motor won't start until he advances the throttle) But you get the idea. If he only had control of throttle and nothing else, his plane will come back in one piece.

What's that worth? This is a guy who absolutely will not overcontrol. This guy is a success already and he hasn't turned the radio on. Okay, he turns the radio on. What are his issues? Big #1 is orientation. How is he better off? On approach he gets twisted around and disoriented. But our guy knows the secret. This plane can fly itself. He lets go of the control, dials in a little bit of power so the plane is no longer decending and rethinks the situation at his leisure. The plane was never in danger, his sanity was. The plane is its own buddy box.

If he prangs it, he's pranged his free flight planes before and it's no big deal. He fixes it.

The beauty of the learn from free flight scratch build system is that it costs almost nothing. Success is all but guaranteed. The disadvantage is that the learner must do something he doesn't necessarily want to do, learn to build and fly before he picks up a radio to do what he really doesn't want to do. And he has to invest time to replace the money he doesn't have. It's really helpful if he can do this stuff in a mutually supportive and competitive club type situation. But with with help, any kid can do this regardless of income level.

Another thing. RC is sick and dying. It is sick and dying in the US because the AMA has abandoned its role. During the 1930's to 1960's the AMA's major thrust was thousands of clubs full of kids gluing together stick and tissue free flight planes. Then that was too pedestrian. Those pattern planes, ducted fans, RC scale jobs--those were cool. Those would attract the attention of the public. And instead of doing those TOO, they became the entire focus of AMA activity. It became a playground for the kids of the 1930's and 1940's to show off their sophisticated, overpriced and impossible for the general public to attain state of the art creations. For those inclined to substitute cash for hard-won experience, kits were sold. Aeromodeling was dead. It just didn't know it yet. Some prophets, like Frank Zaic, cried in the wilderness but were ignored.

The parkflier movement has a way out of the trap. Planes that a beginner can fly can be bought for reasonable prices (under $500. Sorry but that isn't so bad, less than a Coke a day for a year) that a real human being can have a decent chance to fly. But at its best, it is still expensive for a kid on a $5/week allowance. Hey, that kid is playing on his Xbox right now for more hours than it would take to do something real: learn aeromodeling. He has the time and doesn't have the money. That seems like a vaguely familiar situation.......

Well I'm glad you're not a normal guy, but in a good way. I'm glad you've taken the input and done something with it instead of rejecting out of hand. You're a good writer with a talent for organization and a deficit of that wackiness which often pollutes people of such individuality, drive and ambition.

I apologize for dismissing your opinions and putting you in the wacky bin. The signs I took for fanatacism were just eccentricities, not badges of a false messiah. Just about everything worthwhile that "mankind" has accomplished has actually been the contribution of a gifted and talented person who didn't quite fit the society he benefited so much. Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Charles Proteus Steinmetz, you can check 'em off, were not normal people. You might not want them as a neighbor or invite them to dinner. Some of them didn't EAT dinner. Today they could not succeed in anything because they would not be allowed to. Excellence is no longer a criterea for hiring, conformity is. You are an individual. It will cost you. And it will be the source of every reward you will ever have in life. Never change.

But please consider keeping your number of threads to a minimum. There is no need to have a thread in every topic. That oozes looniness to sensitive people like me. Then, when the titles feature all caps, multiple exclamation points and urban legend e-mail type phrases like "TELL EVERYBODY!!!" or "CHECK IT OUT!!!" or I don't really need more examples. I'm sure there is some Internet guide to spotting spammy e-mail posts and the same thing goes in forums. It's way too easy to get branded as a kook. Most of the time that branding would be appropriate, but once in awhile, as in your case, it's inappropriate.

What I have done (I'm also a WWII submarine manual targeting wonk over at Subsim.com) is keep a post #1 updated with links to what I've done. When someone wants to find something new they just go to post #1. People learn to do this very quickly and it keeps you from being shuffled to the bottom all the time or making new thread after new thread and the old stuff getting lost. When it's sufficiently developed, I'd ask the moderators to consider stickying the thread.

Here at RC Groups they can give you rights to moderate your own thread so you can delete posts from people like me who sometimes have contrary things to say. The voice of experience speaks: beware of censorship out of hand because those contrary people will be responsible for the most important improvements in your work.

I apologize for taking an unwarranted negative approach. I wish you success and will be watching your progress.
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 04:31 PM
Wake up, feel pulse, be happy!
C₄H₁₀'s Avatar
United States, AK, Fairbanks
Joined Aug 2009
12,395 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockin Robbins View Post
Panther;
I appreciate two things. First I appreciate that you actually took a step back to formulate a thinking response instead of a rash reaction. That's a good sign. And you took some time to explain yourself, telling something of who you are and what you are about: what life experiences resulted in the positions you take in your paper. That completely breaks you from the mold of that Z8 guy we were talking about earlier. You also are completely devoid of catastrophic economic prophesies, a refreshing difference. So I am happy to be shown wrong. You are no Z8. You are a rational human being with a lot of drive and ability. Those are rare, you know.

You asked a very good question that goes to the heart of what a beginner needs to succeed, "Now ask yourself, is that really comparable to a HobbyZone Champ? Well, not really. ***Though the Champ is an EXCELLENT beginner plane****, it lacks ailerons, is too light and gentle to advance a great deal on, and is a micro 1S LiPo setup. A comparable plane to the Bixler would b..."

First we have to separate out the unassisted newbie from one with advice only, to one with hands-on buddy box expert assistance. That has some bearing on what is appropriate to recommend. If we are talking about the unassisted newbie, no, the Bixler is not comparable to a Hobby Zone Champ. The Champ is a flyable plane and the Bixler is not. It is a large, impressive looking collection of future (and not very far in the future) garbage. The newbie, having no building or repairing skills, having no aerodynamic judgment, will just toss this thing in the air as is and make a smoking hole. End of hobby.

The guy with advice might just get away with fixing the Bixler so it's flyable. He might be very lucky and find himself able to fly a 4-channel plane. But one thing we know for sure about beginners--he will damage his plane. When he does so, he will find no replacement parts available from Hobby King. Typically he will be dealing with stripped servos, broken foam with pieces missing, hardware replacement, hinge rebuilding, motor remounting, etc. Each guy with advice will only get so far before he, too has a new hobby.

The guy with active hands-on help from an expert who is willing to give him flight instruction will do fine. The expert will coach him through the several airframe mods that the Bixler needs, the expert will buddy-box him and the newbie will learn to fly. He won't hurt the equipment so much because the expert can snatch his cookies out of the fire.

But that third guy can learn with ANY plane. He could be just as successful with a Parkzone T-28, parkflier size. At that level there is nothing special about the Bixler and no reason to recommend it over just about any plane in the universe.

Let me propose to you the original third-world way of learning to fly RC. I say this because the United States was a third-world country between the 1930's and 1950's (actually early 1960's) as far as consumer behavior was concerned. We would have laughed at the proposition that families own more than one car, that houses be air conditioned (even in Florida!), that houses would be larger than 1,000 square feet for just about any size family. Food accounted for more than 50% of the average family's income. Today food costs less than 10% for comparison. Somebody says this is the worst economy ever? Sneer in their general direction. Oh, yeah, those 3rd world citizens were happy and had no idea that they were deprived.

In those ways there was a path to RC. First you learned to build stick and balsa free flight airplanes covered with tissue. These taught you balance, trim, what makes a plane happy, what makes it unhappy. You learned to build a plane that would take off, make right circles under power and when the rubber was exhaused the plane would make left circles. That way it didn't fly away so fast. It was a balancing act between rudder trim and motor torque. There were a dozen other things you learned, but the most important thing you learned was that the plane knew how to fly itself and you could teach it.

No electric motors in those days and that was a big barrier that is gone now, thank goodness. But after you have learned to fly and learned aerodynamic principles that keep a plane flying THEN it's appropriate to build a plane for a radio and electric power. It would be essentially a radio ASSISTED free flight airplane. Just give her the power and she takes off. She flies herself so you are just guiding, not flying. The plane is flying. You know--to a greater or lesser extent that is true for any plane the pilot will ever fly.

The advantages of this method are first, that the learner has taught himself the aerodynamic principles of flight. He KNOWS how to balance a plane. He KNOWS that small deflections of control surfaces go a long way, he KNOWS that the plane knows how to fly without his help. He has building experience, repair experience, aerodynamic analysis experience, he is a success before his thumbs ever touch the sticks. You know what? He knows that even if he forgets to turn the radio on he'll get the plane back. (what am I saying, the electric motor won't start until he advances the throttle) But you get the idea. If he only had control of throttle and nothing else, his plane will come back in one piece.

What's that worth? This is a guy who absolutely will not overcontrol. This guy is a success already and he hasn't turned the radio on. Okay, he turns the radio on. What are his issues? Big #1 is orientation. How is he better off? On approach he gets twisted around and disoriented. But our guy knows the secret. This plane can fly itself. He lets go of the control, dials in a little bit of power so the plane is no longer decending and rethinks the situation at his leisure. The plane was never in danger, his sanity was. The plane is its own buddy box.

If he prangs it, he's pranged his free flight planes before and it's no big deal. He fixes it.

The beauty of the learn from free flight scratch build system is that it costs almost nothing. Success is all but guaranteed. The disadvantage is that the learner must do something he doesn't necessarily want to do, learn to build and fly before he picks up a radio to do what he really doesn't want to do. And he has to invest time to replace the money he doesn't have. It's really helpful if he can do this stuff in a mutually supportive and competitive club type situation. But with with help, any kid can do this regardless of income level.

Another thing. RC is sick and dying. It is sick and dying in the US because the AMA has abandoned its role. During the 1930's to 1960's the AMA's major thrust was thousands of clubs full of kids gluing together stick and tissue free flight planes. Then that was too pedestrian. Those pattern planes, ducted fans, RC scale jobs--those were cool. Those would attract the attention of the public. And instead of doing those TOO, they became the entire focus of AMA activity. It became a playground for the kids of the 1930's and 1940's to show off their sophisticated, overpriced and impossible for the general public to attain state of the art creations. For those inclined to substitute cash for hard-won experience, kits were sold. Aeromodeling was dead. It just didn't know it yet. Some prophets, like Frank Zaic, cried in the wilderness but were ignored.

The parkflier movement has a way out of the trap. Planes that a beginner can fly can be bought for reasonable prices (under $500. Sorry but that isn't so bad, less than a Coke a day for a year) that a real human being can have a decent chance to fly. But at its best, it is still expensive for a kid on a $5/week allowance. Hey, that kid is playing on his Xbox right now for more hours than it would take to do something real: learn aeromodeling. He has the time and doesn't have the money. That seems like a vaguely familiar situation.......

Well I'm glad you're not a normal guy, but in a good way. I'm glad you've taken the input and done something with it instead of rejecting out of hand. You're a good writer with a talent for organization and a deficit of that wackiness which often pollutes people of such individuality, drive and ambition.

I apologize for dismissing your opinions and putting you in the wacky bin. The signs I took for fanatacism were just eccentricities, not badges of a false messiah. Just about everything worthwhile that "mankind" has accomplished has actually been the contribution of a gifted and talented person who didn't quite fit the society he benefited so much. Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Charles Proteus Steinmetz, you can check 'em off, were not normal people. You might not want them as a neighbor or invite them to dinner. Some of them didn't EAT dinner. Today they could not succeed in anything because they would not be allowed to. Excellence is no longer a criterea for hiring, conformity is. You are an individual. It will cost you. And it will be the source of every reward you will ever have in life. Never change.

But please consider keeping your number of threads to a minimum. There is no need to have a thread in every topic. That oozes looniness to sensitive people like me. Then, when the titles feature all caps, multiple exclamation points and urban legend e-mail type phrases like "TELL EVERYBODY!!!" or "CHECK IT OUT!!!" or I don't really need more examples. I'm sure there is some Internet guide to spotting spammy e-mail posts and the same thing goes in forums. It's way too easy to get branded as a kook. Most of the time that branding would be appropriate, but once in awhile, as in your case, it's inappropriate.

What I have done (I'm also a WWII submarine manual targeting wonk over at Subsim.com) is keep a post #1 updated with links to what I've done. When someone wants to find something new they just go to post #1. People learn to do this very quickly and it keeps you from being shuffled to the bottom all the time or making new thread after new thread and the old stuff getting lost. When it's sufficiently developed, I'd ask the moderators to consider stickying the thread.

Here at RC Groups they can give you rights to moderate your own thread so you can delete posts from people like me who sometimes have contrary things to say. The voice of experience speaks: beware of censorship out of hand because those contrary people will be responsible for the most important improvements in your work.

I apologize for taking an unwarranted negative approach. I wish you success and will be watching your progress.

I don't understand. Please clarify further.
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Old Jul 30, 2012, 05:58 PM
buyer of the farm
United States, FL, DeLand
Joined Mar 2009
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Originally Posted by C₄H₁₀ View Post
I don't understand. Please clarify further.
okay
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