Friday, August 2, 2013

How to control Flying Radio Control I.C. Powered Model Aircraft ? The Instructor & Choice of Model Parts

The Instructor 
It’s not completely unknown for individuals to teach themselves to fly model aircraft but more fail miserably than actually succeed.  Without the help and support of an experienced flyer, you are almost certain to destroy your pride and joy at the first attempt.

Gravity is a very unforgiving adversary in this battle and unless you are very lucky, you will loose the initial confrontations.  Even if you have a very commendable attitude and a determination to not be defeated, the encounters will empty your financial coffers quite rapidly.  Repairs or replacement aircraft, engines and radio equipment can be a major drain on finances.
Why make life difficult for yourself when, for the price of a meal out for two, you can have a full year’s club membership and the help of a qualified tutor at your disposal?  Most clubs provide free tuition for novice members.

A proficient instructor can be the best aid to your success in this adventure.  Most club instructors have been through a process of selection and special training to provide them with the skills they need to teach others.
Talk to each of the appointed instructors to find one you can relate to.  Bear in mind also that your instructor has to have your respect.  This relationship is very much a two way exercise and requires you to be receptive and prepared to obey instructions as required.  If the club appoints an instructor that you feel uncomfortable with, don’t be afraid to explain this to the training officer and find one you are happy with.  It is very important that you and your instructor have a strong measure of both trust and understanding.

Once you are happy with your instructor, take some time to sit down and have them explain the programme you will follow (they will probably do this anyhow).  This is important so that you know exactly what will be expected of you.  Not only this, but you will have some idea of the time frames required to fulfill the various stages of the programme.

Choice of Model 

There are mixed opinions as to the choice of first model.  Some suggest the choice of a fully built up model, starting with a box of wood, glues, accessories and a plan.  The theory here is that the construction process will teach the builder a great deal about the way the model works and how it will fly.  This knowledge helps the student understand the laws of physics that apply to flight, the way the model travels through the air and the forces that work on the control surfaces.

The downside of this approach is the time it takes to get to the flying stage.  A rookie builder can take quite a long time to finish a model and the lack of experience can lead to building errors that could make the model unflyable or at best a real handful and difficult to trim for stable flight.

Most modern Almost Ready To Fly  (ARTF) model kits come with a high level of prefabrication and are designed to have the owner airborne in a matter of hours rather than  weeks.  The designers have done all the hard work and the prototypes have been fully tested and checked for their suitability as training models.  In the hands of a competent instructor most of these models will fly straight from the building board, be easy to trim for stable flight and the student will be learning quickly on a plane that is relatively easy to fly.
The choice of model is almost endless.  There are numerous ARTF kits on the market.  A visit to your nearest model shop will reveal a good choice.  You can rest assured that the range they keep will represent the most popular models purchased from them.  This is usually a good indicator that they are finding favour with both instructors and students alike.

Recent designs have greatly improved and the standards of construction and finish are very good.  Most of the models available look something like real aeroplanes and with care and attention, will reward the owner with a model they can be proud of.

If you have joined your local club, take a look at the trainers being used and discuss their choice with both owners and instructors.  Instructor’s opinions are particularly relevant as they will have experience of flying many different types.  They will recommend types they prefer and you can guarantee if they are happy with a particular model, they will be comfortable training you on it.

A model having a wing span of 1.4metres (55 inches) to 1.8metres (72 inches) will be suitable.  Most kits feature models with a span of around 1.52metres (60 inches).  These are designed to fly on a 40 – 50 size engine and are ideal (more about engine sizes later).  Choose a high wing type for stability.  You can progress to shoulder, mid or low wing types when you are proficient on your trainer type.  There are also some practical considerations to take account of.  These include:

Ease of repair - Availability of Spare Parts – Stability - Control Setup - Accessories & Equipment
Let’s look at these in turn.

to be continue see the next post

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