What is the worst glider of all time? - Page 5 - RC Groups
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Oct 26, 2011, 12:05 AM
life long racing nut & modeler
granada don's Avatar
I used the sister kit the HOB 2 T and turned the wing into a 4 panel poly design and put it on my own fuse & tail for a neat 2 meter thermal & slope job.

I really liked the arrowshaft LE that held up real well in a weeded landing area thanks Gene for your design!!

G Don
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Oct 26, 2011, 12:10 AM
Rocket geek
On the Hobie Hawk, I was curious what it looked like, so I Googled and found this interesting article:


The rest of the site there is interesting, too, at least to this newbie.
Oct 26, 2011, 07:23 AM
Registered User
Interesting thread.

I wonder how these birds could have been adjusted to make them "better?"
Oct 26, 2011, 08:24 AM

skeeter +2

Leader of the pits.
Originally Posted by OVSS Boss
You mean no one has brought up the Skeeter......

Oct 26, 2011, 08:35 AM
Deniable plausibility
Shedofdread's Avatar
Really surprised no-one's mentioned the Multiplex Xeno yet. Beautifully engineered kit but sadly that's the best bit. What a waste of packaging material...
Oct 26, 2011, 08:42 AM
Registered User
I would vote for the Bob Martin Bobcat.
Oct 26, 2011, 10:28 AM
Mike Mc
rmmc's Avatar
Originally Posted by prodjx
Hey Tony, I did the same thing with my Espire, once I got rid of the motor system it flew well as a pure glider. A friend put a modern motor and battery pack in his and it doubled the climb performance but he dusted it in by doing some real violent manuver's at altitude. But it really wasn't built for that kind of thing's.
Ditto for me. Installed a brushless system in my Aspire and have loved it for years. I don't think they are around anymore although there is another plane out there that looks just like it but it is red and white.
Oct 26, 2011, 10:44 AM
Mike Mc
rmmc's Avatar
The worst motorized glider I've had was a Jeri (Jerry).
Never got it to fly more than a couple of hundred feet.
It had a good review by one of those builders but mine would not fly. I tried and tried and tried. It had a big Phasor 45-3 as recommended.
I think that the control surfaces were too tiny.

The Phasor is in an Aspire now and it will haul as high as you want vertically. It has enough heft to glide into a strong wind and still thermals well despite its weight.
Oct 26, 2011, 10:45 AM
Registered User
Originally Posted by AMBeck
I would have to nominate the Aspire EP electric sailplane..... In itís electric form it was a total dud......
In it's OEM power arrangement I would agree. I had one given to me and just for kicks and giggles I put a mean honking BL motor with a 10 x 7 folder. Change out dropped a lot of weight and it flew pretty good, it wasn't a AVA or Supra but still not bad. Only flight glitch I noticed was it would dutch roll in higher glide speeds. Didn't do it climbing,only in the glide. Mine no longer is with us as my brother dorked it by attempting to fly it through the crown of a maple tree, tree won.
Oct 26, 2011, 10:59 AM
LSF303-AMA Fellow
tkallev's Avatar
+1 for the Lanier Hawk. I covered the wings in shelf paper that looked like a red brick wall and flew it with a Logictrol "Little Red Brick" radio.

Can you say: "Self-fulfilling prophecy"?

The fuselage resembled a float more than an airplane.

Oct 26, 2011, 11:19 AM
Father of Fr3aK, DLG Pilot
tom43004's Avatar
How could this get five pages in without a mention of the Top Flite Antares?

*pukes in corner*

That airplane was a turd.
Oct 26, 2011, 11:28 AM
Originally Posted by Cap_n_Dave
Interesting thread.

I wonder how these birds could have been adjusted to make them "better?"
Now I'm fairly certain that every once in a great while someone would go to all the expense and trouble of kitting or actually manufacturing a poorly designed glider that just won't fly well.

And yet I feel that this is an unlikely event, even taking into account that while the prototype flew fine, it's reasonable to assume that somewhere along the way things got screwed up by a draftsman or a die maker. Anyone with experience of creating something good only to watch it deteriorate as it moves through the development for market process can understand.

That said, I've been in this activity for over 50 years, if you count all the time spent in free-flight and control line before RC became affordable and practical. And I don't think I can count all the times when I got a plane or glider from someone for little or nothing, because they were unhappy with how it flew.

When it comes to anything mechanical and especially aero-mechanical, I have trouble taking "no" for an answer. While I have had to accept this answer a couple/few times, usually through diligence and/or plain ol' stubborness I've managed to rescue a flying machine from sow's ear status to something at least approximating that of a silk purse.

To succeed in getting a dog to straighten up and fly right requires one to take an analytical approach. One thing I've found is that the problem may seem very counter-intuitive. This may very well mean that any idea no matter how crazy it sounds should go unconsidered.

I recall getting a glider from a guy that could not be flown slowly. It did fine while cruisin' but when you tried to slow it down it would fall out of the sky.

The culprit(s) were poorly shaped leading edges, and also that for reasons known only to the builder the glider had been converted to a T-tail. This second item took quite some time to isolate. Re-doing the LE's was simple enough and made a drastic improvement, but I was still getting weird nose-dropping behavior while thermalling, and when trying to slow for a landing flare. I tried turbulators and other things to no avail, and finally decided that the T-tail might be getting "blanketed" by the wing's wash at high AoA. So I rebuilt the tail into a conventional type and whaddya know, she flew just fine.

Chances are actually pretty good that the glider's basic design is sound. If you've got a dog of a glider, and just can't understand why anyone would bother with kitting or manufacturing it, there's a better than even chance that something went wrong somewhere along the way from the original prototypes to getting in your hands. Just go find that weird club member that you're always seeing off by his lonesome, trying out some crazy looking flying contraption and muttering to himself. He's the guy that wants the challenge of making a silk purse from that sow's ear. He quite likely flew a lot of free-flight, which is where many if not most of our best designers got their start.

Gliders have to be efficient to be good, but powered models don't have to be. The Spirit of '76 has been mentioned several times in this thread, and rightly so. But again, as I mentioned earlier, that thing turned out to be one of the sweetest flying powered planes I've had the pleasure to know.

An .09 engine with throttle (this was way before electrics were more than a gleam in Bob Boucher's eye), tricycle gear with steerable nose wheel, a carved foam "Cessna-like" cabin made that crummy glider into a great airplane.

Don't throw the dog away, try finding the problem and fixing it, or give it to a tinkerer who lives for that sort of thing.
Oct 26, 2011, 11:36 AM
Panda Panda Panda Panda Panda
rdwoebke's Avatar
People keep mentioning the Spirit of 76. It was my first flying experience. I bet the longest flight I ever had with it was less than 60 seconds. I taught myself to fly on a 2 stick 2 channel TX (Mode 1). After I epoxied the fuselage back together dozens of times I built a Skeeter as my 2nd plane. After crashing and fixing that many dozen times I took the fuselage from the Skeeter and put the Spirit of 76 wing on it and called it the Skeeter of 76.

Oct 26, 2011, 11:43 AM
Will fly for food
davidjensen's Avatar
Well stated Dayhead. I too have seen so many pilots who say their planes fly great and they let me fly it and it was way nose heavy or the controls were way to soft or the opposite. They will never move the CG and/or try different program settings. They just don't know any better. On the opposite side Ive seen many who say their glider sucks and when I fly it they are right it does suck, because the CG is way off or something in the programming is way off. Some of these are addiment that the ship just sucks and its not worth the effort. What are you going to do?
Oct 26, 2011, 11:53 AM
Registered User
Originally Posted by dayhead
And yet I feel that this is an unlikely event, even taking into account that while the prototype flew fine, it's reasonable to assume that somewhere along the way things got screwed up by a draftsman or a die maker.
Or crappy wood selection.

Or the builder (as you elude to) ... haha.

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