Fayetteville RC Club

Beginners Information

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Fayetteville R/C Club

Information for Beginners or New members

 

Fayetteville R/C Club would is ready to help new flyers.  We are always looking for new members and our existing ones are ready to train and help you with our hobby.

 

Radio Control airplanes come in many varieties:  electric, glow or gas powered; sailplanes, giant scale, indoor, scale, racing, combat or aerobatic planes; 72 mHz or spectrum radio frequencies with up to thirteen functions or channels.  But it is recommended the beginner start with a simple glow powered high wing trainer with a simple 4 channel radio setup

 

A 72 mHz 4 channel radio is standard equipment.  We recommend you get a “computer” radio of 4 or six channels.  The first four channels control ailerons, elevator, throttle and rudder.   These four functions fly 95% of all R/C aircraft.  For a beginner the extra channels are an unnecessary although frequently purchased option.  The computer radio lets you store different airplane setups in the radio.  This enables you to easily use the same transmitter on different aircraft, saving you from buying an expensive transmitter for each aircraft.  We also recommend you purchase Futaba or JR brand, these are popular radios supported by the local hobby shops.  Since they are popular more people can train you using a buddy box.  A buddy box is when two transmitters are connected by a cable that enables the instructor to take control of plane with a simple button push. 

 

We recommend you purchase a high wing .40 sized glow powered trainer.  These are the simplest aircraft and have the stability that beginning pilots need.  This class of plane is inexpensive and readily available.  Hanger 9, Great Planes, Tower Hobbies, Hobbico, Sig manufacturing all make great planes.  You need to decide on a kit, ARF or RTF.  A kit needs to be assembled from a collection of balsa pieces then covered with a heat shrink film and the engine and radio mounted.  This typically takes 40-60 hours.  Most people choose an ARF, Almost Ready to Fly.  One just needs to mount engine and radio gear and assemble the major components.  This typically takes about 8 hours.  One can choose a RTF, Ready To Fly.  Here the plane just needs screwing together, the radio and engine are already mounted.  One can be finished in under an hour.

 

Most glow engines today are well made.  The OS brand is the most popular, very consistent, easy to tune and run.  Many people feel the OS .40LA or .45LA are the ideal beginner engines for the class described above.  But nearly any common brand engine will be fine.

 

One can purchase the above items at online hobby shop or at one of our local shops.  Tower Hobbies is hard to beat on price check them out at www.towerhobbies.com .  I do recommend you purchase locally however.  The hobby shops in Fayetteville are The Great American Gift Toy and Hobby Company located east of I95 on Cedar Creek Road and Hayes Hobby in the Eutaw Shopping Center behind the Burger King.  Both offer competitive prices, a lot of advice and knowledge and often there is used equipment for sale that is great for people starting out.  If you like eBay then hunt there for a bargain, used trainers setups are constantly offered for sale on eBay.

 

One also needs a few items to make life at the field easier.  A 12V sealed lead acid battery, charger and 12V starter.  Nearly all brands are good purchase by price.  We do not recommend a battery bigger than 7 amp hour, 4 amp hour is enough unless you plan to fly electrics or do a lot of charging of other batteries at the field.  The battery is heavy so buy the smallest (lightest) one.  Purchase a charger for the battery. The starter is a 12V motor that spins the engine upon startup.  It makes starting the engine much easier and safer then flipping by hand. You’ll need to buy a glow ignitor.  This ignitor lights the glow plug to start engine.  Once the engine is running the heat of combustion keeps glow plug lit and ignitor is removed.    Small ignitors powered by a rechargeable battery are the most popular.  A hand crank fuel pump is great, but you can choose a 12V pump powered from the battery described above.  The 12V pumps have a 3-4 season life expectancy whereas the hand crank pumps rarely fail.  A 4 way glow plug wrench, metric and SAE Allen wrenches, small screw drivers, needle nose pliers should round out your field tool box.  A flight box to hold all this stuff is also a good choice, many designs are available.  It seems that most flight boxes are stuffed, bigger may be better, but undoubtedly heavier.

 

One can purchase the above items at online hobby shop or at one of our local shops.  Tower Hobbies is hard to beat on price check them out at www.towerhobbies.com .  I do recommend you purchase locally.  The hobby shops in Fayetteville are The Great American Gift Toy and Hobby Company located east of I95 on Cedar Creek Road and Hayes Hobby in the Eutaw Shopping Center behind the Burger King.  Either one offers competitive prices, advice, knowledge and often there is used equipment for sale that is great for people starting out.  Part of the hobby is social and Great American and Hayes offer support and a place to talk about the hobby.  If you like eBay, then hunt there for a bargain, used trainers setups are constantly offered for sale on eBay.  eBay also has a lot of 72 mHz radios for sale as people purchase the new spectrum technology.  Purchased new all these items total about $500.

Trying to teach yourself to fly is difficult, will result in a crash and often discouraged flyers give up.  We’ll teach you on a buddy box where you’re not responsible for a crash, the instructor is.  We’ll even let you use our club plane.   To solo generally takes a few weeks and a dozen flights.

To fly with Fayetteville R/C Club you’ll need to contact a member and obtain permission.  If you have not joined AMA you can take a few practice or introductory flights with our members.  But we require an AMA membership for repeat flights.  A full AMA membership is $58 per year.  They also offer Introductory memberships for 90 days and $19.95.  This introductory fee applies to a full membership if you sign up within the 90 day period.  We also offer the AMA Introductory Pilot Program.  This program allows one to fly as a temporary AMA member.  Flights are limited to 60 day period and must be conducted with the direct supervision of an AMA Introductory Pilot Instructor.  There is no fee for this program.  Scott Happel is the Introductory Pilot Instructor can be reached at 322-8174.

Fayetteville R/C Club charges $50/year for a common membership and a majority confirmation vote at any club meeting.  Additional family members or youth memberships are $25/year.  Club members are expected to obey all AMA and Club rules.  These are posted at the flying site.

If you’re interested come out to the field.  You’ll take Grove Street/Highway 24/Clinton Road out of Fayetteville through Stedman.  2 miles past the Stedman stoplight turn left at the Strickland’s Gas Station onto John Nunnery Road.  Drive about 1.5 miles and you’ll see our sign and field on the left.  Any member will be glad to help.  Sunday is the most popular day.  One can also contact Scott Happel at 322-8174 or Bill Davis at 634-6422.

If you’re an internet junkie then try these www.towerhobbies.com, www.fayettevillercclub.com , www.modelaircraft.org,  and www.rcuniverse.com

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Fayetteville RC Club
AMA Silver Leader
#680