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Hey Beginners, Want Some Advice For Flying Model Airplanes?

Published: July 3, 2019


Categories: R/C Planes

So, you just bought a new radio controlled plane, AND you’re new at flying it. You believe you have the basics of flight down because you have watched others fly their planes. You’re still new at it though. If you want to preserve your treasured new plane, you could probably use some sage advice from people who have “been there, done that.”

Here are some tips in flying model airplanes for beginners:

  • Is your plane tail-heavy?

A tail-heavy plane is one of the most common and preventable problems radio-controlled pilots encounter.  Make sure that you locate the center of gravity on your plane before trying to fly it.  If you find that your plane is tail-heavy, one solution is adding lead to the nose of your aircraft. You will find that it is very difficult to fly your plane unless you have achieved the correct balance between your plane’s nose and tail.

Inexperienced RC pilots can easily mistake problems with too much weight in a plane’s tail for radio transmitter issues because such planes fly erratically. New pilots may also attribute their plane’s erratic flying to inferior plane design. Here are a couple of indications that you may have a tail-heavy plane.

  1. You try to loop your plane, but it just rolls over.
  2. Difficulty with plane control when you launch it.
  • Is your plane nose-heavy?

Are you having difficulty getting your plane to pull up into a glide? Does your aircraft feel like it’s not getting enough power – even at lower speeds? You may have a nose-heavy plane in this case.

To solve this problem, try placing thumbtacks on the bottom of your plane, at the back of the left and right wings. When you have inserted the thumb tacks, try balancing your plane on your fingers, holding your fingers on the thumb tacks. If your plane is correctly balanced, it should not fall backward or forward. If you have not achieved the correct balance, try adding weight on the opposite end of the plane from the direction that it fell.

  • When flying model airplanes for beginners, find the right plane for your skill level.

You can find radio-controlled planes that fit every skill level.  You will enjoy your novice flying experiences much more if you purchase a plane that flies fairly easily. The Albatross is a good choice for initial flying experiences.

  • Keep your plane as light as possible.

The heavier your plane is, the more speed you will need to get your plane in the air. Other problems you may experience if your RC plane is too heavy include the following:

  • It will be quicker to snap roll or stall
  • Your plane may not respond as readily to radio commands as you would like
  • If your plane packs a heavy battery, camera, big motor or first person view (FPV) gear, you may find that it is more difficult to launch and fly. Additionally, it may roll over when you’re launching it, and it may demonstrate a tendency to land before you’re actually ready to land it.
  • Practice good transmitter techniques.

Here are a few hints for handling your radio transmitter that can help you enjoy smoother flights:

  • Avoid controlling your plane with your thumbs. Instead, pinch the transmitter sticks near the side with the elevons or ailerons-elevator control.
  • Avoid moving your sticks too far. The best stick manipulation method is to move the appropriate stick slowly as you wait for your plane to react.
  • Never bump the sticks! Bumping your sticks instead of using a slow smooth motion will result in a rough flight for your aircraft, and it will feel out of control because the plane just does not have enough time to react to radio commands.

Here are a few hints for handling your radio transmitter that can help you enjoy smooth flights:

Watch out for RC airplane disorientation.

According to an article in RC Airplane World, It is important to be aware of a phenomenon known as disorientation, which carries an element of danger. Radio-controlled plane pilots can easily find themselves in this situation, and if it is not corrected swiftly, they could completely lose control of their plane.

The article describes disorientation this way:

“Disorientation occurs when the pilot loses his or her accurate visual reference to the plane, in terms of its trajectory and which way up the plane is. When disoriented, the pilot does not know if the airplane is flying away from him, or towards him, is climbing or descending.”

It is very easy for a pilot to become disoriented through no fault of his or her own, even when the pilot is flying sensibly.

Here are a few ways this can happen:

  • Flying across the sun
  • Flying directly over your head (from front to back) – Flying your plane directly over your head can be particularly dangerous. In such one situation, a plane crashed into a car, punching a hole in its front fender. Fortunately, no injuries resulted from that mishap.
  • Flying in bad light, such as at dusk or as a storm is brewing. This situation can be unavoidable at times when a storm begins to brew while you’re flying your plane, even if you started flying it when the sky was clear.
  • If your plane’s color matches the sky’s color at the time you’re flying. For instance, if you have a blue plane and you’re flying it against a cloudless blue sky, it is very easy to lose sight of your plane.
  • Allowing your plane to get too far away from you, which makes it difficult to see what it is doing.

Here are a couple of pointers for avoiding a situation in which you are at greater risk of becoming disoriented when flying your aircraft.

  1. Concentrate fully on flying while your plane is in the air. Try to mentally check off this list of considerations when flying your plane:
  • The direction it is facing
  • Altitude
  • Distance from you

2. Be careful of your plane’s color scheme. Try to look for contrasting colors when you’re buying a ready-made plane, or be sure to do that when painting a plane yourself. For instance, use different colors for different surface areas on your plane (i.e. top and bottom). Even if you prefer to use a consistent color on your plane, you can minimize the risk of disorientation just by painting a contrasting double stripe on the undersides of your wings.

While the advice here is hardly exhaustive, this should provide some guidance in flying model airplanes for beginners.

More RC Plane Flying Articles Here

Learn How To Land Your RC Plane Successfully In This Article.

Photo credits:

Featured image – By Airwolfhound – License: https://www.flickr.com/photos/24874528@N04/41815653024/in/photolist-26H79NU-27P1kyB-4R4tzG-5xWPXo-j1x4VL-4R4tBU-j1uWiT-587KwX-j1vBpZ-j1vsFC-57PcDB-j1vzSw-KNrSZU-58c8f3-j1tBb8-j1w8pu-j1tMmZ-j1wozE-fAdMBD-3iQfp7-69j66f-aaUVJk-aaXNRb-aaUZp6-aaXMus-j1xxCE-j1w9Mu-2fV5U6c-j1u6Hi-j1q8YZ-dbvoM2-j1wgWQ-5Br7fF-dbvqNU-j1v4ga-5r52WY-j1qaMZ-j1xbv9-aaXNoS-aaUSsV-aaXNXS-aaXJ9C-2EH1nh-9hFAzK-2EGB5Q-9rj4M9-9ZnCGu-6C6yPk-aaXHam-2jWHpT

2. Steven Depolo – License: https://www.flickr.com/photos/stevendepolo/3698264640/in/photolist-6CNzes-5ZWxo1-212Zw25-5jo6Hm-YJdEAY-nKvTnK-4LMmV5-HETqu7-YkNMy4-WiFvM-DmgcFC-ba1WrM-5mkdk9-6LeHdP-5QiwZR-Wnqgb-S16rW-WizTa-5mktPo-6gabzW-5mfKmc-6mQXR4-2k23EN-FQcQ8-5KgRhb-53igqB-2ECDUV-2eXugP-Wf7vS-2VdfxL-8Wydrg-2Zx4BG-5WJLLc-SSTU8-S31Hx-3bgdfh-Ryhwb-67Tyx8-SSUqr-S4hoT-4WsRZK-Wfx7S-2jWFiD-S4iog-6aWVR6-8jy9Ds-S2soG-5mkbzs-Wnp6C-WfrTm