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-   -   Complete Noob Needs Help! (http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/beginners-85/11378637-complete-noob-needs-help.html)

TheFridge189 01-21-2013 09:41 AM

Complete Noob Needs Help!
Hi everyone. So I decided I want to get involved in RC planes, and I have alot of questions.

I am brand new to them. I have never had one. So I was wondering if I should get a trainer plane, or just have a simulator do the job of a trainer.

Now my next question, which trainer plane or computer simulator do you recomend? I would like the trainer to be rtf, but I do have a 5 channel eflite radio and reciever that I could use.

Do these planes control where the right stick does throttle and tilt, and the left stick does actual turning? So pushing up on the left stick is more throttle, pushing the left stick left or right makes the plane do barrel rolls while going straight, and the right stick makes the plane actualy turn.

If so, what channel number of planes do this? 4, 5,6,7 etc. And are those considered basic controls, or are all planes like that?

Next up, what do you think of planes from banana hobby and Hobby king? They seem like a good deal price wise, but I heard they have horrible customer support, and their electronics are junk. Is this true?

And besides Eflite, banana hobby and hobbyking, what other brands are out there that are good?

Hope you can help me out!

Mike<br type="_moz" />

ec121 01-21-2013 10:22 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Let's start with pitch-yaw-and roll. Elevator is pitch. Rudder is yaw. Aileron is roll. Most people in the US use mode 2 controls which put pitch and roll on the right stick and throttle and yaw on the left stick. There are other setups, but they aren't as popular in the US. A simulator is OK for basic muscle memory developement and when it is raining, but a trainer in the air is my pick for training. Although some people aren't aware of it and only use the right stick. :D If done properly, both sticks are used for turning. A basic trainer can get by with 4 channels, but if you are going to buy a radio anyway, more channels are better for use later. 6-7 will work for most smaller planes. It would be your pick on the airframe selection and electronics. Personally I would go with a brand name radio, but that is just me.

GaryHarris 01-21-2013 10:37 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
It would take months on the internet to explain everything about RC Planes. Sorry, but if you expect someone to do all the research for you so in one magical swoop so you become a great pilot, It's not going to happen. This is a difficult hobby to learn and even after 20 years, I still read almost every post here in order to keep learning. There is no lazy man's way around it, you have to work.

As usual, join a club.

gene6029 01-21-2013 11:20 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
My suggestion is to visit a local model airplane club. You will see both nitro & electric planes there. Talk to the people there & express your interest to them. If like most clubs they should have an instructor that could put you on a buddy box to get your feet wet so to speak. I have had students that used a simulator & it showed since the basic controls were instilled & others that would have been better off buying fuel & spending the time with an instructor. Everybody learns differently. If you are really interested in learning to fly though, you'll need to get out there and get involved with a club. It will save you countless hours( and dollars) of trying to learn everything on your own..........Gene

Hydro Junkie 01-21-2013 11:35 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
I tend to agree with ec121 though refering to pitch and yaw can be confusing to a beginner. Let me clarify it a little:
Yaw=rudder control on the rear of the tail/vertical stabilizer with the nose going left and right, normally done with the left stick moved left and right
Pitch=elevator control on the rear of the tailwing/horizontal stabilizer with the nose going up and down normally done with the right stick moved forward and back
Roll=aileron control on the rear of the wings that rolls the plane around it's body/fuselage and normally controlled with the right stick moving left and right
All that being said, the first thing you need to do is find an instructor. Many feel this will give you the best chance for success, me included.
Next, you need to get an airplane. This is where an instructor can help. You need to decide on your power source, nitro or electric, how many channel radio is needed to control the plane as well as ground support gear you will need to have to get your plane in the air.
Last, but not least, comes the radio gear. My advice is not to skimp on this as the radio is all that keeps your plane from flying away or crashing. A radio that can be used with or as a "buddy box" would be ideal. Again, talk with an instructor on this.
As far as a simulator, they can be helpful but they are no substitude for actually getting out and flying.

RCKen 01-21-2013 11:48 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Try this site that Minnflyer and myself put together for doing exactly what you ask, giving basic info on flying RC.<div>
</div><div>Hope this helps</div><div>

AMA 74894 01-21-2013 12:36 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Exactly the Link I was going to post, Ken :^)
I completely agree with the comments made by GaryHarris, gene6029 and of course RCKen.

one other point to add, since you asked the question:
a simulator can have some value for learning basic stick movements, but it does NOT replace a good trainer aircraft AND instructor.
banana hobbies and hobby king both have some pretty serious customer service issues, (I've bought from both, have had issues with both)
support your Local hobby shop! (www.towerhobbies.com is us based, and does have excellent customer service)
find a local club (you're in california? there are tons), JOIN the AMA, and keep asking questions :^)
AMA: http://www.modelaircraft.org/
Find a local club: http://www.modelaircraft.org/clubsearch.aspx

carrellh 01-21-2013 03:08 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
As a beginner, stick with the bigger distributors for a while.
Tower Hobbies www.towerhobbies.com is the retail arm for all of the brands listed at www.bestrc.com
Horizon Hobby www.horizonhobby.com is the US distributor for another huge portion of the industry. eflite is distributed by Horizon.
Hobby People www.hobbypeople.net handles all brands imported and distributed by www.globalhobby.com
There is one site www.advantagehobby.com that sells items from all 3 big distributors

kwblake 01-21-2013 03:27 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Fridge, welcome to the Hobby / Sport. The best thing you can do, is listen to what these other people have recommended. I have only been around for a short time, but by listening, I have learned a bunch. What Gary Harris said, 20 years and he is still learning. I hope to be so lucky! You live in California, so you get alot more flying time than a lot of others, but I think a Sim is a good start. I was stuck working in the Great White North, for an extended period, so it helped my get a rolling start when I bought a trainer. Plane coming at you and going away from you are two different animals. Also, the reset button, is very inexpensive. What AMA said, support your local hobby shop. If you don't, when you need them, they aren't there. I try to deal with my LHS as much as possible. Talk to them!!! Mine will give me the same or better price than buying online. You won't find out if you don't ask.

Have fun. http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/js/f...eeth_smile.gif

thailazer 01-21-2013 03:39 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
1 Attachment(s)
Fridge.... Open up and print the attached and it will help you get started. Keep reading and researching and you will figure it all out. RC Flying is a great hobby and many get rewards from it for years. Great to see the new interest.

jester_s1 01-21-2013 07:48 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
For what it's worth, don't limit yourself to RTF airplanes. It's not hard to put together an ARF and I personally think that the things you learn about how it works make you a better and more confident pilot. You'll also be able to know you chose good equipment and got what you wanted to get.

So are you wanting a foam park flying to buzz around in circles in a big open space near your house and leave it at that, or are you wanting to get into nitro or bigger electric planes that perform better? The answer to that question is the biggest determining factor in what you should start with.

lopflyers 01-22-2013 08:20 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Three recommendations for you to get infected with the RC planes bug.<div>1. Get to a club</div><div>2. Get an instructor</div><div>3. Listen to him</div><div>
</div><div>If you don't you WILL get frustrated and quit</div>

bikerbc 01-22-2013 02:25 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
I think a good way to start is to join a club..Get an instructor..Allow him to help you pick your first plane to train on...Often clubs will have a loaner all set up and ready for you to train on but if not the instructor probably has a plane or two that he prefers to train with and you will get the most out of your training that way...It will probably be an ARF...Then Get yourself a Kit to build..Something simple like a Stick or a 4 Star or a Tiger...I would maybe chose a high wing tri gear something like a Sig LT40 or a Kadet of some type..That way while you are learning to fly you can be learning to build too and your second plane will be ready when you are... Getting a simulator is a good idea ..I have been in this hobby since before simulators exsisted and have watched the diffrance between guys learning to fly with or with the simulator...It sure seems that they do much better with the simulator although the simulator can not take the place of the real thing...It just helps

TheFridge189 01-22-2013 05:38 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
A foamy flyer is exactly what I want, with the controls that I mentioned. Maybe I am totally misjudging and I 100% respect your guy's advice, but is a club really necesary if I just want to be the guy that's flying a foamy at the park? And with my job, I really don't think I could see a instructor much, maybe once every two or so weeks.

The plane that I want to work up to is some sort of b-17, like the one from Banana Hobby or Hobbyking. I really don't have any desire to get into gas/glow planes, or any crazy stuntflying.

Maybe I have the whole wrong idea here though.

For a first plane that's rtf, what would you recomend? I have been looking at the eflite Aprentice. Is that too advanced?



Live Wire 01-22-2013 06:00 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
It only takes once:eek: At a park you can loose a plane or injure some one[:@] Even at a park some times you can find some one that can help you out! best to know some thing about what can and will happen. If you can only see an instructor once or twice atleast you can get the feel of the plane for the first time and probably take it home with you in one PEACE;)

rgm762 01-22-2013 07:13 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!


ORIGINAL: TheFridge189

A foamy flyer is exactly what I want, with the controls that I mentioned. Maybe I am totally misjudging and I 100% respect your guy's advice, but is a club really necesary if I just want to be the guy that's flying a foamy at the park? And with my job, I really don't think I could see a instructor much, maybe once every two or so weeks.

didn't we just go through this? :D


Hydro Junkie 01-22-2013 07:24 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Mike, let me ask you some questions:
1) How would you react to a 12 year old driving a car down the freeway?
2) Along that same line of thought, how do you think others in a park would react to a beginner(regardless of age) showing up at a park with a foam aircraft that hasn't had any instruction on or any clue on how to fly it?
Now, thinking ahead, you want to fly a B-17. You could have to deal with differential thrust, retracting gear, flaps and a whole lot bigger aircraft. Think 12 year old trying to drive a tractor/trailer rig in downtown city traffic. That is an approximation of what COULD RESULT unless someone shows you the ropes from the beginning

52larry52 01-22-2013 08:54 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
"You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink"....Lots of good advice given, but if your not going to listen, then why ask?

TheFridge189 01-22-2013 09:17 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Thank you very much for the help with the controls. That clarified alot for me.

Well it seems like I really should visit/join a club. The closest one is High Sierra Rc club which is run by Robert Jones. Have you guys heard anything about this club? Sadly, though it's over an hour away.

And would it be a problem that I don't have any hobby shops in my area? Or do you think the club members could take the place of them for advice?

I don't know if it changes anything, but the area I will be flying in if I don't go to the club is a large open space that is my own property and is abandoned from other people. So I will tell you now, put your worries about me hitting other people out of the way.

Now that hitting people is out of the equation, is it still ridiculous for me to think that I could learn how to fly only seeing a instructor once a month and flying in my backyard? If so I guess this hobby just won't work out for me. Maybe when I retire, which will probobly be never! :(

And a b-17 is down the road! It seems really silly that if I fly a trainer for half a year that I master I won't be able to graduate to something bigger...


Hydro Junkie 01-22-2013 09:32 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
is it still ridiculous for me to think that I could learn how to fly only seeing a instructor once a month and flying in my backyard?
Seeing an instructor once a month is better than not at all. One visit gives that person the chance to give you things to work on, both on the simulator and with an actual airplane. It also will give the instructor a chance to work with you one on one for a period of time where mistakes can be seen and corrections made, new things to work on demonstrated to you and the nuances that you may never think of brought into view.
And would it be a problem that I don't have any hobby shops in my area? Or do you think the club members could take the place of them for advice?
As far as people at the field giving advice, I would trust their word over most hobby shop clerks hands down. Unless the clerk is an experienced pilot, they could very well be giving heresay as gospel or telling you things to get you to buy products they are instructed to try to push by the owner.

52larry52 01-22-2013 10:40 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
fridge, If you must go it alone without help then an airplane like a Hobby Zone 48" Super Cub is your best chance of learning by your self. It's an electric foamy, 3 channel, trainer that looks like a Piper Super Cub. They fly well right out of the box, cost about $200 ready to fly, and nothing else is required (but an extra battery is smart). Some people have been able to master them without instruction. Others have dinged them, glued them back together and kept going until they got it, and still others have destroyed them and never learned. If you practice on a simulator and go with a simple EZ to fly "park flyer type" plane like the HZ Super Cub you have a shot at it. Don't try this with a 40/60 size 4 channel glo powered trainer, you will fail for sure! Replacement parts are available on line or at your LHS and you may need them. Check them out at Horizon Hobby.

SBOT 01-22-2013 10:57 PM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
I feel that many people giving advice about learning to fly on their own are sometimes to conservative. If you have a safe place to fly on your own property, there is no reason not to take advantage of it. You can step outside and fly at a moments notice; giving you more chances to fly. The best way is with a qualified instructor, but if you have a private field available as you do; there is no reason you shouldn't use it.
Understand that it will take longer to learn without an instructor and you will damage, crash more planes than you would on a buddy box, but it can be done. I am self taught and like you I had a private field to use right outside my back door, which helped, because I could fly more often than I would if I had to drive to a club field, but at first I crashed many planes. Some never made it once around the pattern, but deep pockets and a supporting wife kept me in airplanes to crash while learning.
Good luck,

bikerbc 01-23-2013 04:32 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Yes you can learn on your own..It will be more expensive and here is where a simulator might really help...If you can even get your self out to a club (you dont have to join) once or twice and talk to the guys ,maybe fly one of their trainers , see what happens , you might have fun..It cant hurt...And might really help..Then fly at home ..The foamys are great because they glue back together fairly easy usually and you arent out a lot when they dont...I tried at first on my own and bust up a plane then got a pointer or two and bust up some more but I kept at it and I still smack em up every now and then...We all do... We just dont like to see it happen and we try to help each other prevent it from happening...You might not like our advice but it is given with the best of intentions...We would like to help you learn to fly as cheaply as possible without injuring yourself or others .. We have found that often when somebody tries on their own they get discouraged and quit after costing themselves a few hundred dollars..We are disapointed that they dont get to find out how wonderfull this hobby can be...So yes by all means if you have the space ,and it take more than you might think ,use it but if you can take a run out to a field where they are flying and talk to the guys...If they are anything like the guys in our club you will find a bunch of friendy airplane enthuiasts ..They might not be allowing new members...But you will get an idea of what kind of space you need and what kind of plane to get etc...And maybe they will have a trainer all set up and you will get a chance to fly on a trainer cord...Just dont give up....Good luck

Top_Gunn 01-23-2013 05:37 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
I don't encourage people to learn on their own without an instructor, but it certainly can be done, even with glow planes. One source of advice for flying small electrics is a series of You Tube videos made by a guy in my club (field shown in videos is not our club field, though). Do a You Tube search for RC Air Training Command.

jester_s1 01-23-2013 06:11 AM

RE: Complete Noob Needs Help!
Doing it on your own you'll crash more and spend more time frustrated, even allowing for the time it takes the drive to see an instructor. I'll say that a day with an instructor is worth about a month of going it on your own for a totally new pilot, so I'll let you do the math to figure out if two hours of driving round trip is worth it. I'll at least advise you to do your first day of flying with an instructor simply because a competent pilot will be able to inspect your plane to be sure it's airworthy and get your plane trimmed properly (hands off straight and level, CG set right) so that it flies right. The number one issue I see with newbie pilots is that they also don't know how to set a plane up properly, so they can't fly well because their plane fights them the whole time. Working with an experienced pilot who will at least get your plane set up right lets you see how it should be so you have a baseline to work from.

One think if you're going to go it alone that will help since you want to fly on your own property is to do it in an area that has some tall grass, maybe a foot high or so. You can ditch these light electrics in it and usually have no damage as long as you cut the power before going in. That will save you a few crashes for sure.

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