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  1. #1

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    Going flying for the first time in March

    Well I've been busy, all my life I've wanted to get a plane and learn how to fly, so in the last couple of weeks I've pulled the trigger. I got a Real flight 6.5 sim, joined the AMA, joined a local club, found an instructor, and bought a plane, I found the instructor through the club I joined, he's a great guy and very knowledgable with over 40 yrs experiance. The plane that was recommended to me is a Hangar 9 Alpha 40 trainer, this week-end Im going to put her together, and get all the field equipment that Im gonna need, Im on the sim about 2 hrs a day, and though my plane is'nt on it, I've been flying the Avistar .46, the Nexstar Select, and the Sig Siniorita, I hope one of those planes flys similar to the Alpha .40. My biggest question though is, is the sim really close to flying a real RC plane? The reason Im asking is because I can take off, land, and fly around on the sim pretty good, but landing ON THE RUNWAY (getting the plane lined up with the runway) is still pretty hard for me, when I do crash, thats when it happens. I've been told that while the sim is a good tool I should'nt expect flying for real to be exactally like flying on the sim. I know most if not all you guys, and gals have flown on the sim, and flown real RC planes so could you all give me a heads up on the differences between flying on the sim, and real RC flight just so I will have an idea of what to expect with a real rc plane in the air, even though my instructor will have me on a buddy box, I think it's still going to be nerve racking for me on the first flight. After my practice, I "play" on the sim with the F4U Corsair, war birds are my ultimate goal, and the Corsair is my favorite. I can even take off, land in the easiest spot, and fly around with it, but I've been told that a war bird is pretty far off in my future. Any tips, advice, ect from all you guys and gals will be greatly appriciated.
    Paul

  2. #2

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Seems like you are tracking along good. BTW, you can download an Alpha for the similator from the real flight/knifeedge forums. I found one on there that was pretty neat. Folks make all sorts of models for download for the sim.

    I would imagine the best advice in my book is to follow the path your instructor lays out for you. Do all the research you can and practice on your similator like you are doing. Above all, whatever you do, don't let things discourage you, don't rush it no matter what, stay in the game, keep yourself challenged, and you will have a life long enjoyment in this hobby. Happy learning and happy flying!

  3. #3
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Welcome!
    You must have done your homework and/or listened to recommendations as you as doing everything you need to do and you selected the proper type of plane and a good one too! Practicing on a simulator greatly improves your chances of having a successful first flight. Yes the landings are indeed the trickiest part of the flight and it will take some time to get good at them. Flying at the field will be different than the simulator due to all of the changing factors ...mostly weather. The wind will be the major factor for you now and to a lessor extend later on but don't let it worry you. After you stick with it and improve your skills the wind won't be so bad.
    Your instructor will show you the proper and safe way to set-up ,check-out ,and start your plane and then taxi it out and take it off, get the controls trimmed out and then with instruction, hand off control to you in the air. They will then land it for you and repeat this many more times and before you know it you will be taking off and then practicing your landing approaches and eventually making your first landing !
    Good luck !
    Brian Ray

  4. #4
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Paul let me congratulate you. You are the kind of student that those of us on the frontline of flight instruction can only just dream about and thats a fact. You have done your research and are doing a reasoned approach to everything.

    On the Sim do not worry too much as you already know it is not quite the same and in real life finding the runway is not quite as bad as the sim.

    Do not get me wrong they are a noticible help and a wonderful adjunct to training an what I normally recomend is to use them concurently with your flight training and not to fly the sim for long periods before starting training with an expectation of reaching some goal beforehand.

    Keep it up and I expect to see a lot more postings from you as you keep climbing each rung of that ladder to realize the dream.

    John
    \"Keep your controllines tight\"

  5. #5

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Welcome to the addiction....You have indeed done your homework....and are going about this the right way.....I can still remember my first landing looking over at my instructor and asking did you land...and the feeling I got when he told me he never took the airplane the whole flight.
    Have fun

  6. #6

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    I'll say hitting the runway is a little harder on the sim than it is in real life just because you don't have any depth perception on the sim and so little peripheral vision. Managing the wind is easier on the sim because it's so consistent (turning up the turbulence makes it more realistic, but even then it's still easier) and there's the factor that every plane on the sim is set up perfectly and is built perfectly straight. After a few lessons though you'll know the difference and will be able to set up the sim to make the plane fly more like yours actually does. Welcome to the hobby and I will second what others have said that you've done it right. You haven't been afraid to spend the money to get the good equipment, so your initial learning should be a pleasant experience.
    No kid, I said break ground and fly into the wind!

  7. #7

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Wow, thank you all for the great words of encouragement, I do appriciate them, as for me doing everything right, it just seems to me that what Im doing is just common sence. Im 61, and what I've learned in life is that you only get out of something what you put into it, and if you want to learn an aquierd skill then the easiest way is to seek out those who have already mastered it. All this is the easiest part, now comes the hard, and fun part, learning how to fly, as I've said, I've wanted to do this for most of my adult life, and Im truely looking forward to it.
    Thank You All,
    Paul

  8. #8
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Also when it comes time to get your field equipment (flight box, power panel, battery, starter, fuel pump,meters,tools, etc...)you don't have to buy everything new unless you want too. You can check out the classifieds on this and other sites , craigslist, etc...and you can find almost everything you need to get started sometimes for pennies on the dollar as a lot of times folks get into this and for whatever reason loose interest and sell everything they just bought . This is the time for R/C flea-markets and swap meets too where you can find things.
    Brian Ray

  9. #9

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Brian Ray,
    That's a good idea, I wanted a new plane, but I sure don't mind buying used equip as long as it works, Im gonna need the whole ball of wax too. I will need a power panel, starter, 12 volt battery, and tote box, I have glow plug igniters that I use for my trucks and cars, I got to get some fuel too, the stuff I already have is 20% for my nitro trucks, and cars, the manual for my plane's engine states that I have to use 10/15% nitro fuel.
    Paul

  10. #10
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Skip the power panel for now. Alot of people have them but really don't use them. A starter with a 12 volt battery and a rechargeable glow ignitor are all you need to start to engine.

    skeeter
    \"It is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission\".

  11. #11
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Sometimes you can get everything used from one seller or you may have to get it piece by piece but you still save some money. You may even find a complete set-up with another plane, etc..for what you would pay new for just the accessories. Depending on the club where you joined, ask there as well and you may pick-up what you need or someone may give you some things they have as surplus.
    The Evolution engine on that plane will run fine on 10% nitro. Any higher percentage only costs more and won't do much for performance....sort of like putting super octane in a vehicle designed for regular.
    Look for some spare propellers too as those stock 3-blades like to break on not-so-graceful landings!
    Brian Ray

  12. #12
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    I would recomend getting master airscrew propellors. They don't shatter when contacting the ground like wood or APC props do. They really take a beating. They may not be a high performance prop but at this time the extra .004562 in effeciency doesn't really matter. I believe the 3 bladed props are harder to get and more expensive too. If you can switch to a two blade it would be cheaper but you have to be careful with ground clearance.

    skeeter
    \"It is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission\".

  13. #13
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    I remember training someone with the Aplha 40 and the 3-blade actually governed the high speed and kept it from going too fast. Perfect for training . I think the 3-blade was an odd size like 10.75X 4 . Probably won't find that in a Master Airscrew but a 10X5 3-blade should be fine and yes the MA prop will last a lot longer than the stock H9 prop even if it's twice the price.
    Brian Ray

  14. #14
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Paul, I'll echo what the others said. You're definitely on the right track.

    I've noticed several things the field has that the sim doesn't:

    - knocking knees
    - shortness of breath
    - other pilots
    - shifting winds
    - noise
    - bugs
    - sun

    It's good to practice on the sim, but there's nothing like being at the field!
    MAAC 83386
    Stetson Flyers, Ottawa
    G-RSBK

  15. #15
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    and "Friendship" Nothing like spending a day at "the field" with others similarly addicted....
    One of the few places you can still and old tmer and kid truly having a good time together...
    Mike -
    I was born a pilot... 100 years to late.

  16. #16

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    great job you will rc planes happy flying

  17. #17

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    You guys must be reading my mind my next question was going to be extra props, so I will need 2 or 3 Master Airscrew 10X5 3blade props. I'll check the hobbyshop first, if they don't have them I'll just order them on line. Also I took your advice, and found on Craigs list a used Thunder Tiger Master combo carry case it has a 12 volt battery, charger, starter, electric fuel pump, glow igniter, and a fixed 2 liter fuel tank,it all fits in a plastic carry case, the kit is $65.00. And yes the 10% fuel will be the ticket, I don't need or want performance at this time, I think for now slower will be better.
    Thanks again for the kind words, and ALL THE GOOD ADVICE
    Paul

  18. #18

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    All I can say is welcome to the addiction ! Sounds like you have really done your homework and it will really payoff for you. Depending on the area you are in Craigslist is a really good place to find exceptional deals on rc items and the fact that you said you already have cars and trucks will help also as it will help you with the orientation and control inputs as the plane is coming at you. And I want to warn you about the smile you won't be able to wipe off your face after every successful flight.
    Club Saito member # 689/topflite AT6/KMP B25 /H9 B25 /sterling PT-17/Andrews aeromaster/H9 p-51/BUSA eindecker/SE5A/J3 Cubs

  19. #19

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    real full scale flying is the same as rc flight,,,in as all the training all leads up to you learning how to land the darn thing and walk away from it,,,,hehe

  20. #20
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March


    ORIGINAL: KitBuilder

    and ''Friendship'' Nothing like spending a day at ''the field'' with others similarly addicted....
    One of the few places you can still and old tmer and kid truly having a good time together...
    Very true! There's a real social component to this hobby that I learned about after I started.
    MAAC 83386
    Stetson Flyers, Ottawa
    G-RSBK

  21. #21

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Hang in there !!! I have been at it a long time started at 11 now 62

    short brake in that time for a JOB

    just started my first WAR Bird P 40 giant TF ?????

    people say the best WBto start out on is a P 47 ???

    the SIM can help a lot but can also hurt you a little deff gets your fingers moving the right way !!!!

    does not have a re set button on my 9503 at the field

    Baby steps dont jump from a traner to aWB do a little in between MY $0.02 R/L


  22. #22
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March


    ORIGINAL: loves nitro

    You guys must be reading my mind my next question was going to be extra props, so I will need 2 or 3 Master Airscrew 10X5 3blade props. I'll check the hobbyshop first, if they don't have them I'll just order them on line. Also I took your advice, and found on Craigs list a used Thunder Tiger Master combo carry case it has a 12 volt battery, charger, starter, electric fuel pump, glow igniter, and a fixed 2 liter fuel tank,it all fits in a plastic carry case, the kit is $65.00. And yes the 10% fuel will be the ticket, I don't need or want performance at this time, I think for now slower will be better.
    Thanks again for the kind words, and ALL THE GOOD ADVICE
    Paul
    Paul,
    If it's this one it looks like you will need to get the battery that will fit in the case and those cost around $28.00 new plus a simple 12v "wall wart" type charger($10.00).. Otherwise it doesn't look to have been used much. I'd offer $45.00- $50.00
    . The stock props are around $4.00 and the MA props are around $8.00. The closest size MA prop to match the stock one is the 10X5. You may want to get a stock one for a spare and a MA one to try. If your instructor approves then you can stick with the MA prop. Your lhs should be able to bring them in for you.

    Brian Ray

  23. #23

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    I'm not a fan of the 12v lead battery to use with the starter. Not only is it an extra 10 pounds or so you have to lug back and forth, but it also requires your starter to be attached to a cord which becomes something else you have to manage. Much better IMO is a NiCd or lipo battery pack attached directly to the starter. It's considerably lighter and more compact, and there is no cord to bother with.
    No kid, I said break ground and fly into the wind!

  24. #24
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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    Hey Paul, welcome to the addiction. I hope you know that from now on all your spare money and time is going to be tied up.
    An observation about your call name, we don't call our fuel nitro. We call it glow. It only has a small % of nitro on it.
    The simulator is great help but there is nothing like the trill of that first good landing.
    You are in the right track for success 
    Keep your wings level
    Club Saito Member #693

  25. #25

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    RE: Going flying for the first time in March

    And that, Lopflyers, is the difference between flyers and boaters. Boaters burn nitro rather than glow as many of us burn 40% nitro or more in our fuel.


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