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Learning to fly advise.

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Old 04-29-2019, 11:50 AM
  #1  
jgwartist
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Default Learning to fly advise.

Hi. I'm trying to learn how to fly. There is not a club or aerodrome anywhere near me. I'm pretty rural. I have a giant horse pasture to fly in but it is a bit windy. What is the best way for me to learn to fly in my situation? What would be a good plane to go with? I did buy a Aumee DHC-2 A600, It was fun but too light weight and fragile for the breeze in my pasture. The SAFE mode helped but I can see where it could be detrimental to skill development. Any guidance would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 04-29-2019, 12:16 PM
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RCFlyerDan
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The best advice that anyone can give you in your situation is to buy a simulator. They are fun and do teach you how to fly. The best thing about a simulator is that ALL of the wrecks are free.

https://www.realflight.com/products/rf8/index.php


Last edited by RCFlyerDan; 04-29-2019 at 12:20 PM.
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Old 04-29-2019, 01:39 PM
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x2 on the simulator.
You're in a compromising situation. Larger, heavier planes handle the wind better. But, they can be prone to more damage with hard "landings". Consider the E-Flight Apprentice, after you've bought the simulator..
Put a LOT of time in on the simulator - practicing turns, figure 8's, and of course landings. Don't worry about getting on a runway, just learn how to bring it in, slow it down, and touch down. Precision can come later. Once you can get it up in the sky, actually fly it instead of chasing after it, and land it smoothly somewhere (anywhere) repeatedly, then time to take something like the Apprentice up.
Real Flight actually has a simulated copy of the Apprentice, with SAFE to learn on (and a bazillion other planes). It will also allow you to add wind and wind gusts, so you get a feel for those too.
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Old 04-29-2019, 02:26 PM
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jgwartist
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Default Thank you!!!

Thank you!! What do you suggest if a simulator is not an option?
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Old 04-29-2019, 07:48 PM
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Well, the Apprentice is still a good plane. It's a tad light, but still can handle mild winds (10 mph, with gusts to 13-14). Of course much more in the hands of a skilled pilot. I was training last week with it in 20+ mph winds, but landings were kind of rockin' and rollin'. You didn't mention how big the pasture is - it is a bigger plane, so will cover a much bigger area in flight. I assume from being rural you have a pretty big area you can fly over, even if it isn't your property. It needs very little for take off/landing. Light damage should generally be repairable with Foam-Tac glue. Replacement parts are readily available. Will require an investment in batteries and a good charger, if you don't have one.
While purists don't like SAFE, this is the situation it was created for. It won't stop you from crashing, but absent an instructor it is far better than the old days with planes that were essentially free flight models.
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Old 04-30-2019, 04:21 AM
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Thank you!!
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Old 04-30-2019, 04:57 AM
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You need to walk before you can run. That said, Gas (Nitro) or Electric really doesn't matter as long as you understand the system you go with. You want a high wing with tricycle (nose wheel) landing gear for improved handling on the ground and in the air. The wing should have at least some dihedral for stability. More if ailerons are not used. You want it as big as you can afford but at least a 50 plus inch wing to handle the wind better. Several pounds of heft takes more wind to knock it around and out of control than your light weight foam ARFs. Also a larger size is better to SEE it at a distance which also translates into you having more time to make decisions early in the learning process.

You also need to really try to find the nearest group of flyers to you and at least do a day field trip to them. Be it an AMA club or a group of 'Rogues', nothing beats the one on one help of an instructor. In fact, I would make this my number one priority. Even before I purchased a plane. You can start by finding the nearest RC hobby shop and asking them. A phone call can do wonders.
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Old 04-30-2019, 07:17 PM
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The Apprentice is an easy model to fly but unless you can produce a grass strip the size and smoothness of a cricket pitch the undercarriage and wheels will be useless.

You would be better with something like this.

pusher Bixler without UC

Now I know it is on back order with Hobby King but look around for one or something similar.
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Old 05-02-2019, 03:45 PM
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Take the field trip, maybe even 2 or 3 times . You may get lucky and meet someone to help that lives pretty close . Red
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Old 05-02-2019, 06:34 PM
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In what situation is a simulator not a possibility? If the cost of Real Flight puts you off, check out the Clear View RC flight simulator. It's not as good graphics wise or physics wise, but it will get you going.
For planes, I'd go with a gentle flying 3 channel foamy. If you fly near a patch of tall grass, you can dump the plane in the grass for the first few landings until you get a feel for it. You'll have to wait for calmer days though, as gentle flying and good in the wind don't go together.
https://www.hobbyzone.com/rc-airplan...DY8971PNP.html
or
https://www.hobbyzone.com/rc-airplan...DY8925PNP.html

Of the two, the top one is a little more capable, which the bottom one will be more docile.

Best of luck to you, and be safe.
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Old 05-08-2019, 06:39 AM
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jgwartist
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Thanks for the advise! The nearest club or field is a 2 hour drive from me and the nearest shop is at least an hour and a half drive. I don't own a home PC that is adequate for a simulator and the cost of that and a PC would be beyond my means at this time, I use my work one for this forum. That's why I went with the DHC A600, it allowed me to see if I'm interested in the hobby without an outlandish out lay of cash. Unfortunately the wind in my pasture made that a short lived experience with such a tiny plane. It made 2 good take offs and landings before a gust took it away, never to be seen again. I appreciate the advise!
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Old 05-08-2019, 11:34 AM
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You won't like this, but the fact is that cheap planes are the most expensive choice for doing this hobby. As you've already seen, they don't hold up and can't handle real world conditions.
You can use the Clearview simulator. It will run fine on older computers. A better option is to buy an older version of Real Flight or FS One. RF 4 or 5 doesn't need much processing power, especially if you turn the eye candy down a bit.
Save your dollars for a couple of months so you can buy something better. The Bixler above isn't a great plane, but it does fly and will hold up. I wouldn't go with anything cheaper than that if you are serious about actually flying. If it takes a month or two to save the money to pay for it, then that's what it takes.
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Old 05-08-2019, 03:13 PM
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Heh! Heh! You think starting is expensive? Wait until you're hooked. I have individual models with enough invested in them to cover your flight sim, a high end gaming machine and one heck of a good RC Trainer, radio and engine.

It's a Disease!!!
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Old 05-10-2019, 11:39 AM
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Download a free rc simulator on your cell phone, worked fine for me to get used to plane orientation vs. stick movements. After that and three sessions with an instructor I was landing a sig seniorita smooth as glass on calm days. I agree with others here, if it's windy where you are start with a bigger plane eg a 6-8 lb 72" wingspan high wing trainer.

Alternatively an Apprentice S with as3x. The stabilization can be turned down as you progress and then turned off once you become a competent flyer. My 16 yr old grandson learned on that plane by himself after becoming proficient on a cell phone app.
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Old 05-10-2019, 06:34 PM
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jester_s1
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On the topic of funding, what too many guys miss in any hobby is that it's not the purchase price that is an issue, but rather the cost over time. I totally get wanting to get started soon and feeling the itch to get in the air. I remember it well. But you won't be satisfied by spending your limited budget on something that just isn't good enough.
A better way to think about it is how much you can afford monthly on fun. That includes going out to meals, any other hobbies you like, movies, etc. So if your fun budget is $100 a month, you can get setup with everything you need to start RC properly in about 4 months. If you don't mind waiting a bit longer, you can be set up with a glow powered trainer and all the accessories along with an annual club membership in about 6 months. After that, you upgrade as you are able. If you want to fly park foamies, you can add a new plane to your collection about every 3 months after allowing for incidentals. If you want to fly nicer planes, you can probably swing 2 a year. Maybe you decide at some point that you want to fly a big aerobatic plane, so you don't buy anything for 2 years.
The point is that you can afford whatever you want to, as long as you are willing to wait for it. Don't get hung up on the initial purchase price. Figure out what your budget can actually handle and put together a plan.
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