Sailing on a budget - Page 3 - RC Groups
Shop our Airplanes Products Drone Products Sales
Thread Tools
Nov 25, 2012, 02:27 PM
Registered User

seems a good choice too.

Originally Posted by Stu L
Thanks Phil.

Whilst I struggled with what to do, the misses has offered to pick up the sky surfer from the LHS for xmas. Unless I buy the pro, the radian is darn expensive over here. So her indoors suggested that if she picks up the surfer, I've spent nothing. And if it turns out to be a disaster, no loss. Bless her, she's ace.
funny. in northamerica the surfer goes for us$130 and is 2.4 meters, whilst you can get the radian for us$150-and is 2 mt. the thing is, the surfer seems a stable plane too, but the batteries are more expensive. still, i think your surfer will do well. just get some1 to assist you at the beginning. it is very easy to do something that will run havoc otherwise, until you master all the routine and don't make silly mistakes. it is like learning to ride a bike, or flying control line. you get dizzy, or loose orientation. many things may go wrong.
again, good luck.
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Nov 25, 2012, 05:53 PM
Registered User
Stu L's Avatar
Wow, that's interesting.

The Sky surfer in the UK has a wingspan of 0.78 meters, so is much much smaller. the Radian is really expensive in comparison, coming in at $286 plus radio gear.
Nov 25, 2012, 07:00 PM
Registered User

same name, very different plane

wawawait a minute. this is the sky surfer i thought you were talking about: see

and the radian i got at the nearest hobby shop i paid us$150 ( plus rx and pack).

just to make things more clear.
so the lil'1 i don't think is the best bet.
Nov 26, 2012, 01:48 AM
Registered User
Stu L's Avatar
Ah! there's more than 1 sky surfer, who knew?

The tiny weenie one may not be the best to learn on, but does have a substantial advantage over every other aircraft I've seen - she's free!
So, I can learn to crash without spending a $

I'm dabbling with the idea of using what I would have spent on a radian to pick up a Gentle Lady kit and to slowly build that over the winter. I like the idea of flying something I build, but not sure about the structural merits of that train of thought
I think the sensilble thing to do is to learn to fly first, before I start spending. Hell, I may not enjoy it at all....

If I could sneak back towards my theme of Sailing on a budget, I see that some of the trainer style birds are only 2 channel. Further down the line, if I do end up with something beyond the sky surfer, I'd thought initially that I could utilize my radio gear from my 1/10 cars. I have a Futaba 3GR, that I've been thinking about converting to 2.4ghz for a while, which would help with costs further on.
Only issue is, as it's designed as a car set, the throttle has a return spring to keep the stick central. Does that make it unsuitable for flying?
Nov 30, 2012, 01:40 PM
Registered User

foam or wood

once i wrote this in my blog:
foam or wood
now that i have started several projects using hybrid components i have become more aware of the differences between wood and foam; their advantages and disadvantages; their limitations. i want to build some sailplanes with modern lines, hence using some fuselages already made of foam or glass, but with wing and stab of my own design, with open frame, made of balsa, and iron-on covering.

the main difference is that with foam/glass the stress is spread uniformly, whilst with wood it is concentrated on joints. there are modelers who, like me, have been building long before any other material than balsa was known, but i have been interested in the development of new ideas and materials. at the beginning there were some attempts to introduce molded plastic, but it was too heavy if was strong enough. now with the advent of eps, epp, epo (and who knows what is around the corner), things have changed. and with so many planes ready (or almost) to fly, some of wood and others from foam, it easy to see why foam wins: it is made to survive crashes way better than wood. and if you want to build something new, foam allows you to do it way faster-and requires less parts, in general less precision-and survive impacts much better. besides easier to repair. in recent times i have designed and tested so many planes that if made of balsa would take me 10 times longer.

so, there is a place for everything and every1: if you want to build that scale plane with all the details, and you no longer crash or even have hard landings and wait for a day with no wind, and you like to build, then go for balsa.

but if you are like the vast majority of guys who don't have the time, the patience or the skills, then go get a foamy rtf and fly! besides, as they are so resilient and take so much punishment, you will learn to fly faster: if you hit hard, most of the time just pick it up and launch it again. or if you break it, glue it and fly again in 5 minutes. you can't do that with balsa. your choice.
Dec 01, 2012, 06:47 AM
Registered User
Stu L's Avatar
Wow, really? That sounds like you're not an advocate of balsa for a 2nd plane.
I dunno, I thought it would be a nice experience to build one up from a kit, so I learn how its built and fixed etc. I haven't heard of anyone starting out by building in foam - isn't building in foam limited to scratch builds?
I kinda thought a scratch build would be mote difficult from a construction point of view compared to a balsa kit?
Dec 01, 2012, 07:44 AM
Registered User


give a look to my blog: i just finished a 2 mt sailplane of my own design, and it's a woodie. that means, balsa and spruce and covering, that took me 3 months to do.
but am just giving the facts. face it.
Dec 01, 2012, 08:14 AM
Darwil1k952's Avatar
If you've got a flying site that works with winds from all directions that's really ideal. Are there any decent slopes there that you could fly a slope soarer off? If so I can recommend a few really good ones:
For low wind there's the Dreamflight Alula or a bit bigger the Weasel, both really nice to fly or for a bit more wind (up to about 40mph) the SAS Wildthing (46" or 60"), or have a look on Flyingwings website, all of their models are good!
Another nice model if you want powered is the Multiplex Easystar 2 - I have one set up as 4 channel - it is superb and easy to fly!
Oh btw I'm in the UK, West Midlands - wish we had good gliding sites with less than 40mins driving.
Good luck D
Dec 01, 2012, 08:38 AM
Proud member of LISF and ESL
Originally Posted by Stu L
Wow, really? That sounds like you're not an advocate of balsa for a 2nd plane.
I dunno, I thought it would be a nice experience to build one up from a kit, so I learn how its built and fixed etc. I haven't heard of anyone starting out by building in foam - isn't building in foam limited to scratch builds?
I kinda thought a scratch build would be mote difficult from a construction point of view compared to a balsa kit?
Building a kit from wood is a great experience. Highly recommended.

There are some foam kits, like the Easy Glider, but they are almost ARFs.

There are lots of foam kits for slope gliders. But again, they don't take the time that wood kits take but they are still true kits.

Kit building, working with wood structures, is a great skill to learn and for some people, building kits is as much fun as flying the finished product. So build away!
Last edited by aeajr; Dec 01, 2012 at 09:00 AM.
Dec 01, 2012, 12:59 PM
Registered User
kilwein's Avatar
You mentioned the Gentle Lady. I have built several of them stock, kit bashed with ailerons, change the angles in the wing and also stretched the kit. Built them in pure glider versions and also electric versions.
It will handle a ton of electric power on the nose, we are talking 300 to over 2100+watts on one, it is insane.
I have flown mine in 30mph wides on the slope. Put some weight in it or it will be a hand full, I used 8oz.
Used one E version in combat with streamers on a few years back and talk about a blast.
Put floats on and you have a water and snowy day flyer also.
It is a fine kit to start with and not a lot of money in it when built as a glider version. Build it straight and true and enjoy it.
The Cularis I would not recommend it as a starter. Tip stall queen when slow, but a blast to fly in the wind. We are talking 50mph. Great on the slope.
The Easy glider is also a good one.
I have built and also kit bashed the BOT all the way up to 17ft 4in, another good flyer.

As mentioned in this thread there are a bunch of choice to choose from.
Soak it all up and go for it on what ever you decide.
Dec 01, 2012, 02:30 PM
Registered User
Stu, just come across this thread, living where you do you don't really need a an electric soarer as thats just additional expense (unless you find it difficult to get to a slope), also if you fancy an easy build then the Chris Foss Middle Phase is the classic beginners slope soarer, can be built rudder elevator to start with and then an aileron wing fitted later, or for something more adventurous (but will need an experienced pilot with you) check out the ever popular Speedo or if you want to go the foam route then the Multiplex Easy Glider Pro without the motor is a good option and this can be built with or without the motor
Dec 04, 2012, 11:23 AM
Registered User
Stu L's Avatar
There's a glider shaped box appeared in the bedroom, all wrapped in Christmas paper.........
Dec 05, 2012, 08:34 AM
Registered User
Good stuff, here's a useful website for once it's built !
Dec 05, 2012, 09:14 PM
Registered User
Ok, now you have something to break while you build the Gentle Lady. I suspect you won't regret doing so, though you may end up wishing that you had built an Oly II. But you end up with something nice either way.

If you're worried about breaking things, I hear that simulators are useful. Certainly it's a much cheaper way to crash. Suggest CRRCsim, which seems to be more realistic than others I've seen. But I'm not an expert on simulators. I may be biased as I know the authors and fly at the field it depicts! It's free.
Originally Posted by Stu L
There's a glider shaped box appeared in the bedroom, all wrapped in Christmas paper.........
Dec 06, 2012, 10:08 AM
Registered User
Stu L's Avatar
Thanks Lincoln. I've been using that simulator for the past few weeks - it seems fairly good, though obviously I have no real world experience to compare it to.
I did see the olyII and was quite tempted by testimonies of fantastic long float flights. We'll see.
The more I think about it, the more I fancy building a balsa kit.

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Discussion Competitive Altitude Limited Soaring on a Budget sandist Electric Competition Soaring-F5J/ALES/e-Soaring 108 Jul 08, 2013 04:48 AM
Discussion Building a plank on a tiny budget. ddashk Slope 6 May 14, 2012 03:01 PM
Help! Help choose components on budget! Axefly Multirotor Drone Talk 27 May 07, 2012 07:18 AM
Wanted 3 axis gimbal on a budget =) HobokenHobbiesNJ FPV Equipment (FS/W) 3 Mar 20, 2012 11:57 AM
Discussion CHUUUUUUCK WOOLERY! On the budget Twizter68 Life, The Universe, and Politics 3 Mar 19, 2012 01:16 PM