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Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

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Old 11-07-2012, 05:25 PM
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bunsen
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Default Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Hi

I have been in the hobby for years and have built a number of planes and recently introduced my 13 year old Grandson to RC Airplanes with a small CHAMP RTF RC airplane. He enjoys flying it and we are presently assembling an ARF but he would like to build a wood kit over the winter. I have had a SIG Seniorita trainer and was thinking about something of similar size that would be easy to build with a small 25 > 40 sized or so Glow engine. Need something that he would be likely to actually finish so should not be too complicated nor too large.

Perhaps a:

SIG LT-25
SIG LT-40
TElemaster 40 V2
Mini TElemaster V2

Appreciate suggestions.

Ray

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Old 11-07-2012, 05:59 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

The Senior series and Teles have a more complicated bird cage rear fuselage.  I'd suggest an LT.  SImple fuselage and the wing ain't bad.

Tom
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Old 11-07-2012, 07:50 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

A lot of those kits used to be the kind of kits to start building on. and I've recommended them many times over the years. But I have a new standard that I recommend for anybody, no matter what age, to use as their first kit to build.


This plane is a great trainer to learn to fly on, but that's not what it was intended for. The guys at Balsa USA designed this kit as a first kit for somebody that wants to learn to build. And the kit shows it in everything in the box. The manual is 4 volumes alone. They literally take the builder by the hand and show them how to do everything. they start out with things as simple as how to cut the wood, how to measure, how to glue, how to cover, and so on and so forth. Trust me when I say this, you WILL learn how to build from this kit. The guys at BUSA put a lot of time and effort into designing this kit so that people could learn to build with it.

I'm working on a review of this kit. Heck, I've learned a couple of new tricks from this kit that I didn't know before. I highly recommend it.

And the neat thing about this is that when you are finished you have a great flying trainer for your efforts!!!

Hope this helps

Ken
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Old 11-07-2012, 09:48 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Hey ken I have been intrigued by that airplane also as a possible recomendation but have not seen one show up to date. But I do have a question, is the airplane a taildrager with a nose wheel bumper or a trycycle with a tail skid or is the main gear quickly repositionable to be both? Also is the engine intended for an inverted layout?

John
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:16 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Quote:
ORIGINAL: RCKen

A lot of those kits used to be the kind of kits to start building on. ............The manual is 4 volumes alone. They literally take the builder by the hand and show them how to do everything. they start out with things as simple as how to cut the wood, how to measure, how to glue...
I'm sure this new standard will not catch on readily. Contrary to the pro's, consider the con's.

1. A 4 volume manual that would test the sanity of anyone who can dress themselves every morning independently. Did someone read how to button a shirt, tuck it in, how to put on pants before the shoes? Do 13 years old's, nay "any age", have an attention span in this world of visual technology, to read 4 volumes without giving up?

2. This ridiculous price. That kind of money allows anyone to opt buying 2 kits just like the legacy SIG models you mentioned instead.

For the guy on a budget and is smart enough to ask free questions and post his build on RCU like hundreds have before him,
Why stop asking questions now?

Get something for a lot less money. Maybe Ken will share details with you following your son's build thread, as he's spent his money for your benefit. If you decide to follow jumping in to build all kinds of models and leave the 4 volumes a mystery, you can stick to the same balsa USA product line and get a real classic that's survived 35 years (must be successful):

http://shop.balsausa.com/product_p/434.htm

Not only is it a good simple build, it's bullet proof to learn to fly on as well. The last club trainer we had lasted more than 6 hard years, it trained at least 14 people, patched up with ease on hard crashes, survived countless cartwheel landings from strong FL crosswinds, etc.
I recovered it and sold it here on RCU where it probably still lives on. I made a fresh one with the Plus feature, a 4th channel for ailerons, for the next 14 people to learn on as a club trainer again as all the Nexstars that were the new standard in 2007 but only lasted a weekend on average, we went back to this kit instead. A manual shouldn't be required to cut wood, glue parts, push sand paper along the grain, and really for a trainer, if you make trial and error mistakes, who cares? It will fly anyway.

As Ken said, he's learned a few new things, but after decades in the hobby without it, nothing slowed him down, did it? I even manage well myself and have no clue what sits in those 4 volumes, and never will at that price.
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Old 11-08-2012, 08:32 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Thank you kindly for the replies.

I am inclined towards the Balsa USA Stick 40 plus.  Everything in the open.  Looks to be simple, has ailerons and is about the right size and price is acceptable.  Engine likely  either an OS 25LA or a OS 35AX I would guess.

Appreciate the feedback.

Ray
ps;  My first RC airplane was a 0.049 cox babe-bee powered DQA with single channel rubber band powered escapement,  rudder only....  :-)  Somewhere I still have the plans that were downloaded from a thread on RC Universe... 




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Old 11-08-2012, 07:16 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Ray, I built models for a couple decadesoff and onbefore my first RC.

I cut my teeth on the Comet Kits. A 10 cent kit ment I had to find five pop or beer bottles in the ditch, The kicker though was that I had to find 10 more to get a tube of ambroid to glue things together. That could take a month or more of walking the ditches to see what I could find. I'll never forget the 50 cent B29 that I built.

Times were different then. Instant gratification wasn't a coined phrase then. Accomplishments were what was important, not how quick. Kids today have so much information at hand and it turns out they can accept it quite a bit better than some of us old guys. IE my grand daughter is in Kindergarden. She is learning to tell the differences and what makes them different, for rhomboids, trapizoids. She had circles, squares, and triangles last year in pre school. I was in high school when I first heard the term Rhomboid. Then and now are quite different.

I think that the younger ones still have a feeling of accomplishment, look what I built. Make the first one a lot easier than a Commet 10Cent kit, and make sure they finish it, even if it takes some help, or a lot of help. How great a flyer it is can be addressed later.

Don
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Old 11-09-2012, 05:02 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Quote:
ORIGINAL: bunsen

Balsa USA Stick 40 plus. Everything in the open. Looks to be simple, has ailerons and is about the right size and price is acceptable. Engine likely either an OS 25LA or a OS 35AX I would guess.
No marketing catch phrases to promote this model (like Duraplane) or cowl work to lose in a crash. It's just is what it is, an excellent trainer to build, fly, and survive being augured in.
It's often overlooked probably because of it's appearance in the illustration, but in the air it really flies great! Fuselage builds as a tri gear or tail dragger. So many instructors love this model themselves when they get to fly it with the student too.

On a slow fly by he can check his fuel level, without telemetry, instantly confirm where the clunk is at after a landing, a very straight forward fuselage build.

You might find a used 40LA instead of the pricey 35AX? 0.25 and + 5 lb airplanes aren't really a good marriage.



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Old 11-09-2012, 09:36 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

The BUSA kit sound nice but is a 13yo the audience for that? I wonder if the attention span can handle getting bogged down in the details as opposed to say a slab sided trainder. If the student has an adult to work along side with... it sounds perfect... as building should go along a pace quick enough to keep interest.

Do they still make the Sig Kadet (mark 11 now maybe?)... "strong", easy biuld in the size your looking for.
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Old 11-09-2012, 07:01 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Appreciate the feedback.

This will be  a joint project, sort of an excuse to spend some time with my grandson.  They live about 30 minutes away.  I have fond memories of my Dad and I working down cellar on many different model airplanes growing up.  Free flight, Controlline, hand launch gliders, rubber powered   you name it.  My goal is to keep it simple and then go from there.

I will look for a 40LA or a 40FP perhaps.

There is a local club that has a Controlline circle so that may be a next step.

Cheers and thanks.  

Ray






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Old 11-10-2012, 07:47 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

http://www3.omnimodels.com/cgi-bin/woi0093p?&C=GCD
A 46LA or GP42 is 85 dollars new, easy to find, not discontinued. I prefer the GP42 for the carb mounted needle and metal backplate.
They are about the same weight as the 40s.
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Old 11-10-2012, 08:18 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Quote:
ORIGINAL: carrellh

http://www3.omnimodels.com/cgi-bin/woi0093p?&C=GCD
A 46LA or GP42 is 85 dollars new, easy to find, not discontinued. I prefer the GP42 for the carb mounted needle and metal backplate.
They are about the same weight as the 40s.
Wow $85 for a $35 engine?
Staggering retail figure when they're brand new.
I can't remember the last time I ever bought a store priced engine unless it was clearance priced online for 25-50% off. I found several NovaRossi 61 engines for only $99 and bought 12, resold them for $175 on E bay to cover hobby expenses and those buyers were thrilled with the discount from retail. Anyway, check this out.
http://www.rcuniverse.com/product_gu...m?engine_id=43
These engines last years, so used is really a bargain.

For that $85, you could buy a lightly used AX 46 here on the marketplace, shipped. You don't even have to get a Higley nut or break it in, in most ads here, it's already provided in the sweet sale.




For a trainer, this looks like a wise $27.50 investment!
http://www.rcuniverse.com/market/item.cfm?itemId=881305

Wow, $27.50 to your door! A real classic. Too bad I don't use Paypal.

OS LA
http://www.rcuniverse.com/market/item.cfm?itemId=880951

OS FP
http://www.rcuniverse.com/market/item.cfm?itemId=880952

http://www.rcuniverse.com/market/item.cfm?itemId=878986

Super Tigre 40 - Italy - new, faster than all the above, and lasts longer too.
http://www.rcuniverse.com/market/item.cfm?itemId=879920
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:20 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old


Quote:
ORIGINAL: bunsen

Thank you kindly for the replies. I am inclined towards the Balsa USA Stick 40 plus. Everything in the open. Looks to be simple, has ailerons and is about the right size and price is acceptable. Engine likely either an OS 25LA or a OS 35AX I would guess.
The Stick 40 is a very rugged plane, and have flown the original Swizzle Stick's for many years in both 3 and 4 channel configurations. I believe the taller tail and rudder came from the poor grounding handling of the original - that Stick style tail was blanked out by the fuselage which made it a guess as to what it was going to do on the ground every time. The original also flew as well if not better as a 3-channel. I just recently sold off my last Swizzle Stick due to lack of room, but have considered building another this winter to add to the trainer fleet.

For power, the 25LA will work, but it'll be on the low side of the performance curve, slower in climb and will be flying on the wing at all times. The positive side to that light weight of an engine is the plane should thermal on a hot day. The .35AX will be a bit much for it, but can be throttled back. I flew a K&B 3.5cc (.21 - same as the current boat engine but in aircraft form) and it flew quite well (same with an OS .25 FSR). We used to pylon race them with a .25 displacement limit. A K&B Torpedo 40 was actually too much power for it, as was a Magnum .52RFS I had on my most recent. A .40 4-S, OS .35FP or .40LA will be best suited ( and there are still lots of both of them out there NIB, and very inexpensive).

The best part of the Stick 40 is it's very easy to repair, and inexpensive to scratch build a second plane if you wanted to.

Hogflyer
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:05 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old


Quote:
ORIGINAL: bunsen

Thank you kindly for the replies.

I am inclined towards the Balsa USA Stick 40 plus. Everything in the open. Looks to be simple, has ailerons and is about the right size and price is acceptable. Engine likely either an OS 25LA or a OS 35AX I would guess.

Appreciate the feedback.

Ray
ps; My first RC airplane was a 0.049 cox babe-bee powered DQA with single channel rubber band powered escapement, rudder only.... :-) Somewhere I still have the plans that were downloaded from a thread on RC Universe...




Bunsen, I have read all the replies down through hogflyer. I remember some years ago we at Jetero RC also raced them. Hogflyer pretty well knows what he is talking about.

Now for a sport and trainer I would select a good 25 to 35 and probably use a 9-4 to 10-4 wood prop. Low pitch does well in the air and makes landings much easier.
If you must overpower with a .40-.45, I strongly suggest an 11-4 or 5. I remember our 4-star racing days. 9-7 was the allowed prop. .40 engines. Most had trouble with landings. For sport change to an 11-4 or 5 and landings were a piece of cake.

I don't like fast overpowered trainers. One item that you may consider for your grandson and that is something that is NOT spoken about much. I don't know if the B-USA has strip or barn-door ailerons but here is a tip maybe you are well aware of any straight wing, non-competition acro, needs some washout. Either do washout the wing, OR raise the barn-door ailerons about 3-5 degrees, OR if strips, cut them off about 3" from the tip and glue those short strips on the back of the wing with about at least a 1/4 inch UP at the back.
This really does a lot to prevent tip stalls, wandering at low speed, take-off snaps. etc. Those things can always happen but some form of washout really helps to prevent them. Makes training a lot less, shall I say, "Uneventful".
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Old 11-10-2012, 12:07 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

My 1st "big" RC kit build was an Olympic 650 glider with 6 foot of span. It had a fairly low parts count for a plane that has built up surfaces. The thing is the builder gets a big sense of accomplishment in fairly short time since the framework is relatively huge. A mentor can show the young builder efficient ways to miter and glue the balsa stick tail parts, which ought to be more interesting to put together than factory cut slabs of sheet balsa.
These planes require very little rigging..obviously.
The end result will be a plane that makes an excellent primary trainer. Much more stress free than a typical 4 channel trainer with the higher wing load and more features on it that can send you home.
Sorry, I can not recommend a cheap glider kit that is still in production [and also goes together easily]. I wish I could recommend the Goldberg Gentle Lady, but that kit was a nightmarish PIA.
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:11 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

G'day

I would like to put in another vote for the Sig LT25. It is a straight forward build, is quite strong and flies far better than most trainers. I love the Kadet Senior and the Seniorita but I think they are a little complicated for a first kit.

I have built all the Sig trainers. The only one I don't like is the Mk II. It is strong but it is also heavy and does not fly anywhere as well as the LT series or the Senior series. All the Kadets, apart from the Mk II, will fly really slowly because they are very light and have low wing loadings.

My first LT-25 was used to teach a particularly difficult student how to land. He would do several good landings and then either cartwheel the plane (we rebuilt the wing tips many times) or dump it after stalling it (we put nylon wing bolts to hold the undercarriage so minimising the damage). I eventually retired the model but after a couple of years, I fixed it up and gave it to another friend. It is still flying.

I have more recently built another LT-25. It is the nicest plane to fly I have apart from my Kadet Senior and my 1/4 scale Space Walker. It has an Enya 36 four stroke which is magnificent and total overkill. I just like exotic engines. The old one used to fly with a Magnum 30 four stroke, a Leo 46 (on FAI fuel and about 1/4 power) and finally a very old OS FS 40. An LA 25 or 40 or GP 42 would be fine.

Have fun with your grandson. I have about 12 years to wait until my grandson gets to that stage. Sadly, he does not live 30 minutes away - more like 5 hours drive.

Mike in Oz

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Old 11-11-2012, 08:02 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

I did a Kadet LT-40 kit with a 10 year old that I had met at the local field about a decade ago. We worked on his model every Sunday afternoon for a couple months until it was ready to go flying, then our Sunday's changed to flying sessions. We followed that model up with a 4-Star 40, which was a faster build the second time around. The main point is to do as little of the building as possible, but talk the kid though it with a simple demostations where necessary. I had a huge shop at that time, so I worked on building other models while he worked on his. Learning to read plans, cut wood, sand parts, cover, and install the gear are major sticking points for beginners, but easy to learn with a guide.

We flew a couple hundred flights together before work moved me across the country. Last I heard, he was studing engineering.
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:09 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

I didn't see where the Op said what ARF his grandson was building. But if he's already flying a Champ and going to fly what ever this ARF is while building a kit, he would probably be bored pretty quickly with flying a trainer, even if it was a kit.  My recommendation for his first kit would be the Uproar. It's a very simple kit to build. As far as flying, it's definitely not a trainer, but would be a pretty stable second plane with a .40 two stroke and the control throws minimized or on low rates.
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Old 11-11-2012, 07:24 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Hi Folks

Thanks for the feedback.  

I have ordered a Balsa USA Stick 40 plus and a Thundertiger 35  2 cycle engine that we will start building in December.

Presently we are also in the final steps of putting together a Chipmunk 90-120 ARF that one of the kind fellows at the field gave my Grandson.  I have a SAITO 91     4 cycle that we will be using.  Plan is for him to fly the Stick 40 plus first in the spring.

I will incorporate the suggestions regarding washout and/or shortening the ailerons on the Balsa USA Stick 40 plus .

The next step will likely be a mid-wing mildly aerobatic type plane.

Thanks    

Ray


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Old 11-15-2012, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Ray, great news! Don't be bashful, have him post his build right on RCU and get all the tips along the way to encourage him to complete this project. Will be looking for it myself. I know a guy on here with 4 volumes of tips and tricks he's got on hand to share with us all!
Enter "STICK 40 PLUS BUILD" here http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/forumid_121/tt.htm
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:30 AM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

For what it's worth, I think adding washout and shortening the ailerons on a wing that is already so stall resistant isn't going to be good. There are negatives to doing so; the washout is going to hurt inverted flight (if he plans to learn that on this plane), and the shorter ailerons are going to remove control authority from the very spot where they are most effective. It's not like we are talking about a tippy WWI plane or serious aerobatics model here. I'll also suggest removing the dihedral as well. The design was originally intended as a 3 channel plane like most traditional trainers we still use were. That's why it has the dihedral. But for a student who already is good enough not to need a self-leveling plane, the effects are all negative. The plane rolls out of crosswinds, make rolls feel strange, correcting in vertical lines will be a pain, and hammerheads will have unwanted coupling. I suppose if all he's going to do with it is fly around upright and pull a loop now and then it won't matter much, but a flat winged stick is so easy to fly and hard to mess up, I don't see why you wouldn't go that route.
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Old 11-16-2012, 06:01 PM
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Default RE: Suggestions for first kit for 13 year old

Hi

Received the kit and engine today.  Will get wrapped up for Christmas.  Will likely reduce the diehedral a bit to make the ailerons more effective.  Should be fun.    

Thanks agin for the feedback.

Ray
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