Are kits dead? - Page 7 - RC Groups
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Jul 15, 2010, 05:02 AM
ajroahkni's Avatar
I took less time to build my Zip33 kit than I took to read that page of posts, especially the last one.

Last edited by ajroahkni; Jul 15, 2010 at 04:17 PM.
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Jul 15, 2010, 05:12 AM
Woodstock 1's Avatar
Lol. Yeah. Must be a slow day at the office. Still, the last sentence I suppose is the most relevant: "Can't we all just get along?".
Jul 15, 2010, 05:32 AM
Crikey never leave beer behind
steve wenban's Avatar
"Can't we all just get along?".[/QUOTE]
No we can't because we are builders of models and you guys are just pretend modellers ,Still if there's a few beers involved my opinion may vary
SteveW living the dream
Jul 15, 2010, 05:38 AM
Woodstock 1's Avatar
...and we all know how chicks dig guys who build their own toys..
Jul 15, 2010, 05:43 AM
Crikey never leave beer behind
steve wenban's Avatar
Chickens have nothing to do with it maybe a few old ducks but definitely no chicks.
Jul 15, 2010, 06:19 AM
Phil.Taylor's Avatar
Originally Posted by cvanscho
As an example, yesterday I took delivery of my latest model, a Valenta L-213A (2.77 m). I received a bunch of moulded parts and a packet of small bits, together with a A3 page of drawings only, drawn up in what looks like in 1923.
Are kits dead? - Nope - Chris just bought one

Are "traditional" wooden built-up kits dead? - IMHO, for slope soarers, yep, pretty much dead - there are now more suitable materials for slopers.

ARTFs? - maybe no-one else is old enough to remember the Graupner Cumulus in the early 1970s - fit a couple of servos - go out & fly - even compete & win. In the UK there was also an ARTF sloper at that time.

What is a kit anyway? - maybe in full - "kit of parts" - to be assembled into something. The nature/materials of the parts & how much knowledge/effort to assemble them, and how much effort is needed vs. the cost - well, there's the argument.

Jul 15, 2010, 06:28 AM
Stirring the pot
johannlochner's Avatar
You can have my chicks....
Jul 15, 2010, 07:13 AM
Registered User
maybe no-one else is old enough to remember the Graupner Cumulus in the early 1970s
Yes, I am, didn't you have to take a mortgage out to afford that one?? Poor sods like me had to make do with the "Impala" from Phils stable. Built a pair of 72" wings for it looooong before Veron did.

Regards Ian
Jul 15, 2010, 07:15 AM
Crikey never leave beer behind
steve wenban's Avatar
Impala PFFFT Springbok baby now there was a R/E ship
Jul 15, 2010, 10:02 AM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
Been thinking about this one a bit lately, as I sit back and consider the lack of time I've been able to devote to simply assembling the beautiful ARF Minivec I've got sitting on my bench...

I dunno, having two small kids, a fulltime job, other interests and commitments, etc., it's no small task to find the time & energy needed to get into the shop to work on toy airplanes. And if I happen to have both time and energy, and it's daytime and there's wind, I'll be going flying, thank you very much! I got into this hobby exclusively due to interest in flying, the building (and later designing) part is just the "necessary evil" required to get the planes in the air.

Building can absolutely be fun and satisfying, but in the competition for the old time/energy combo, it falls (for me) a very distant second behind the actual flying part of the hobby, which IMHO is what the whole "radio control" thing pretty much implies? I mean why put radio gear in it if you're not going to fly it...

And of course studying design and trying to imagine different solutions to various challenges is quite fun, but again, it's all entirely purpose/problem-driven: how can I improve X to make Y better when I'm flying?

I'd be remiss if I didn't also admit that talking about flying - be it with my friends "in real life" or here on RCG - is a *huge* part of my interest and participation in the hobby, as my post count here attests. I used to feel like this was somehow "taking time away" from other aspects of the hobby, but really, participating here is participating in my enjoyment of the hobby, so I don't really consider it separate any more. One might argue I could better spend the time in the shop... maybe, but I've found when I'm not "in the mood" for the shop, but force it to happen, usually nightmares result... better to wait for the right time. Is there something like BUILD-A-GRA?

Another thing to consider is how good some of the ART/RTFs are. Yeah, not all of them - but really, quite many these days. I think the Weasel-Evo is an excellent example. It's a very fast build, very repeatable, and offers excellent performance. If you like that kind of plane, why wouldn't you love having that convenience? I mean, if you enjoy flying and all.

Anyways this is wandering, but I guess in my ideal world, I would like to design things to suit my flying needs, have someone else build them (perfectly of course!) and then let me fly them and give feedback for the next iteration. Yeah me and everyone else, duh!!! Maybe someday

Latest blog entry: Of Fish, France, FPV, and Fun!
Jul 15, 2010, 10:28 AM
around Colombia
ShredAir's Avatar
Originally Posted by Phil.Taylor
maybe no-one else is old enough to remember the Graupner Cumulus in the early 1970s
Yikes, I am! Thanks for reminding me... Graupner even "stole" my own-designed and scratch-built way to hinge a full-flying horizontal stabilizer... : )

Dieter Mahlein, ShredAir
"lost-cause" ARFer
Jul 15, 2010, 11:03 AM
born again slope junkie
dingb's Avatar
kits not dead !! have 2 on bench at this time , plus 5 more under bed,, even slowley working on plans build of 2 mtr scalie .,,, things have just mooved on with the times and materials available ,, I even remember the graupner cumulus, my mate had one ,, was the envy of the local slope at the time
dave ( still proud of sons progress building)
Jul 15, 2010, 02:25 PM
Slope Sauce
trees's Avatar
You guys had me cracking up with your response to my megapost.

Steve, I couldn't agree with you more. I'm relatively new to the scene but I've appreciated your positive, informative and encouraging contributions throughout RCG. As I previously mentioned in another thread, your design contribution, Dawson's flight/filming skills and Jack's kit building skill provided me with my biggest stoke so far in this hobby and I thank you all for that. I hope to bump elbows on the slope with you guys in the future! Fly on...
Jul 15, 2010, 03:32 PM
Ask me about VTPR
oldscooler's Avatar
Are Kits Dead?

Nope - I could never trust another builder to put my favorite kit or scratch sailplane together because I know there will be something not quite right with it and is probably something I would have taken care of on my bench. If my plane doesn’t fly well I want to be the responsible party. If it fly’s great then I still want to be the one responsible.

I think my first full kit build was a Gentle Lady. And if I remember correctly, that’s the only model I built strictly by the plans, and Goldbergs plans were always thorough and complete. Thereafter I would always take a kit and build it better or modify it to something I saw on the slope that made the plane fly better. From then on I never built another kit by the plans which led me into scratch building which I totally enjoy.

Then my first foamie “kit” Le Fish came along and suddenly im presented with a new building medium – EPP, yuk! Then I find out there are no plans and I say that’s cool. Checked it out here on RCG and followed along with a friend building one himself and we are having a ball with them now on the slope. It’s a great “kit plane” that I would love to see done in composite construction some day. Oh geez, another one on the build list!

Sometimes kit planes can be a springboard towards an original design you might like to pursue. An old friend of mine who had a successful model distribution business during the 70’s-90’s told me one day – “Eric, if your going to produce a kit for market, make sure it’s all your own, do not copy other designs for they will not sell”. Look at Le Fish… Steve was inspired by the French influence in aerobatic models and he was able to put together a most successful design of his own to what we see today. Maybe he’s humble about it, I know he’s proud, and I thought I would never say this, but that plane is the perfect model for all manner of aerobatics IMO (though I would include another carbon wing rod for the bottom surface) and it’s a foamie and it’s a kit! Pretty amazing and Steve should go down in history as one of the most inspiring model sailplane minds of all time if he hasn’t already. Maybe the LF next evolutionary step is to become an ARF. I know this, if it does I would break down and buy one because I know how great a performer it is and after bouncing it off the deck every weekend having maximum fun who wouldn’t buy a Le Fish ARF again and again? Maybe even ShredAir would???

E… Good Lift!
Jul 16, 2010, 11:06 AM
Piscine Promulgator
surfimp's Avatar
All I did was scratch an itch, man!

The backstory on Le Fish is well documented in the original thread, but I am quite glad it's proven to be such a fun plane for others. All I really wanted was to just take what I loved about flying a Weasel and extend it to a fully aerobatic conventional airframe.

Jerome Bobin of France deserves mention and much credit for inspiration - he was the designer of the MiniToons and is a co-designer of the Wasabi along with François Lorrain and Thierry Platon. In fact, if I'm not mistaken, the MiniToons served as a sort of testbed for the ideas later presented, in composite form, in the Wasabi. Ironically for me the goal was the EPP plane, but anyways, it's all eventually worked out so nicely. It was neat to be involved both with Le Fish and with the introduction of the Wasabi, I feel very lucky to be sure!

And it should be noted, bringing this thread back on track, that the Le Fish arose entirely as a scratchbuild effort. Or maybe we should call it a "scratch-itch" effort So hopefully that can serve as inspiration to others to find the limitations of whatever they are currently flying, think about how they can be improved, and then build them. Who knows, maybe it will turn into a kit or something

Latest blog entry: Of Fish, France, FPV, and Fun!

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