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Please help me do the unthinkable ...

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Please help me do the unthinkable ...

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Old 11-27-2009, 06:31 PM
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ClearedForTheApproach
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Default Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I intend to violate one of the core principles of R/C aircraft flying, and I'm hoping you can help me succeed.

Ihave zero R/C flying time; however, Iwant to learn to fly without using an instructor. And, to complicate matters, I've modified my Alpha Trainer to add floats and intend to take off from a 1-acre pond on our property. So my first-ever R/C takeoff will be from water ditto for the hoped-for landing. On a modified trainer. Now, to degrade things further, I am also a rated pilot in full scale aircraft. (I'm told this is a handicap?) Single-engine, multi-engine, commercial, instrument, and seaplane ratings. The only other factors are overhead power lines (which are mostly out of the way) and lots of trees, although a reasonable sized clear area is adjacent to the pond.

Here is my question, and Iask you to please help:

Given all of your knowledge of flying R/C aircraft, what would you recommend that I do to increase the chances that Isuccessfullymanage the climb-out, maneuvers, and return for landing? Iknow it is recommended to have an instructor please overlook that and give me your best advice on how to do it without one.

Thank you.
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:08 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

Nameless,

I'm a pilot too, five ratings, two of them commercial, one being a commercial seaplane rating. I also have 400 hours in a Lake LA4-200T, which I owned.

I was a good R/C flyer and I'm an excellent builder. Though I never stop building models, I haven't flown R/C in a number of years. A good number of years.

With all this experience behind me, I'm still not going to go it alone.

First chance I get, I'll look for assistance from the local Club so I can solo again, with confidence and without hurting anyone.

There is always help available, from "modelers," at the local Club.

I suggest you visit and join your local Club and the AMA?

Charles
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:22 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...


I know it is recommended to have an instructor please overlook that and give me your best advice on how to do it without one.

Thank you.
Buy ARF's in large lots.
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:26 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

The beat advice I can give is to buy a RealFlight Simulator (Which has simulated water flying)

And lots of wood and glue... covering too - Just in case
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Old 11-27-2009, 09:14 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I have instructed R/C airplanes for 13 years and love float flying. I highly recommend you seek the help of a qualified R/C float flier. Float flying can be a little tougher for someone new to float flying but who has lots of experience from the ground. If your plane is the least bit out of trim the floats can amplify your problems on the water and once in the air.
I am thinking of not only the plane's safety but yours and anybody who may be near you.
Whatever you decide to do - I hope you are successful. Keep us informed.
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Old 11-27-2009, 09:48 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

Can I come over and watch?



IF you ABSOLUTELY must teach yourself.. (which I did) get a two meter glider, practice flying towards you, and landing..

Buy a simulator. I never had that option..but it would have helped!

Oh yeah enjoying building and rebuilding is a help teaching yourself.. (which I also did!)
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:35 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

Why don't you just get one of these Hobbyzone Supercub LPs? http://www.horizonhobby.com/Products...ProdID=HBZ7300 The complete plane with radio, lithium battery, and charger is only $180. It has that anti crash sensor, and is made of tough Z-foam, which rocks. Plus, a snap-on float kit is available for $25 extra. Spare parts are cheap too. I dunno, everyone says this is the ultimate trainer, and your best bet if you don't have an instructor. That's what I'd go with in your situation; save your gas plane for when you can master the cub.
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:40 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

Have a boat available, you'll be needing it. Seriously. [:@] [sm=drowning.gif]
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:57 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

50 percent of all boat and seaplane hobbys is casting a tennis ball with a fishing pole out into a body of water !
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Old 11-27-2009, 10:58 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

That Super Cub would be a good way to start. It's a little trick on the water, but it's easy to fly and pretty forgiving. It doesn't cost an arm and a leg either.

I helped my partner review it last summer, check it out:

Super Cub Review w/ Video
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Old 11-27-2009, 11:33 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I also have a 1-acre pond and it is smallish for landing. And I'm pretty comfortable at landing where I mean to. I land there with a park-flyer type plane on floats, but a .40 size trainer would have NO margins at all.

Answering a similar question before, I suggested that he save time and grief, and just mail me $600. Same net effect to him:no airplane and a smoking crater in his credit card.

The earlier note from MinnFlyer that suggested you spend the rest of the winter on a flight simulator was actually very good advice. Also good advice was learning to fly with a qualified instructor on a buddy box.

My Brother in Law was a Marine Flight Instructor with 2500 hours in fixed and rotary wing aircraft. >>A Good Pilot<<< I handed him the transmitter while flying my Eaglet 50 and he became totally disoriented and re-kitted it in about 15 sec.
All the feedback you have consciously and unconsciously learned to depend upon is gone when you are standing on the ground and the plane is a quarter-mile away.

Good luck. We'll coach you all we can.
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Old 11-28-2009, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

If you absolutely refuse to get lessons, at least get RealFlight G4.5 or later. It'll get you used to the idea of the controls switching around when the plane's coming toward you, and some idea about water takeoffs & landings. Put in about a month on the simulator, using it for a couple of hours each day, until you can perform the basic manouvers without stressing. Then you might have a 50% chance of taking off, and a 20% chance of landing it intact. Oh, and get a friend to video your attempt and put it on youtube, so we can all have a good giggle.

Seriously - get lessons. They're a lot cheaper than planes.
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:08 AM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...


ORIGINAL: ClearedForTheApproach

I intend to violate one of the core principles of R/C aircraft flying, and I'm hoping you can help me succeed.

I have zero R/C flying time; however, I want to learn to fly without using an instructor. And, to complicate matters, I've modified my Alpha Trainer to add floats and intend to take off from a 1-acre pond on our property. So my first-ever R/C takeoff will be from water ditto for the hoped-for landing. On a modified trainer. Now, to degrade things further, I am also a rated pilot in full scale aircraft. (I'm told this is a handicap?) Single-engine, multi-engine, commercial, instrument, and seaplane ratings. The only other factors are overhead power lines (which are mostly out of the way) and lots of trees, although a reasonable sized clear area is adjacent to the pond.

Here is my question, and I ask you to please help:

Given all of your knowledge of flying R/C aircraft, what would you recommend that I do to increase the chances that I successfully manage the climb-out, maneuvers, and return for landing? I know it is recommended to have an instructor please overlook that and give me your best advice on how to do it without one.

Thank you.
The guys who are determined to teach themselves don't come here asking questions, they go out and wreck some balsa. Then they come back & tell us they did it alone, with no problems on the first flight. And spectacular success since.

You, however, don't want to do it alone. You've already started, by coming here and asking questions. So ask away.

Oh, and when the plane's coming toward you, turn your back to it and look at it over your shoulder. Maybe then you won't overcontrol the wrong way with rudder or ailerons.

Dave Olson
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:22 AM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...


ORIGINAL: Scar

Oh, and when the plane's coming toward you, turn your back to it and look at it over your shoulder. Maybe then you won't overcontrol the wrong way with rudder or ailerons.
Excellent advice
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Old 11-28-2009, 11:31 AM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I agree on the good advice above. I teach new pilots that a low wing on a plane coming at you is a danger, just point your aileron stick at the danger and it will go away. That said, I had the privilege of living in a community with many retired airline pilots. We had a small r/c club and I was the de facto instructor. Full scale pilots were without question the hardest to teach how to fly r/c because they are not used to the plane moving around. In full scale it appears as if the world is moving around you.

If you must try to go it alone get an FMA co-pilot (a gyro stabilization system). If you can't find one, I have one I'll sell you cheap.
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Old 11-28-2009, 11:50 AM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I taught myself to fly RC in 1974. I used a 1/2A, high wing, 3-channel 'trainer' plane that was an ARF from Hobby Shack.

I did not keep a log book, but I estimate that my first 30-50 flights on that plane ended up in a crash. A repairable crash, but a crash none the less. At last, I finally flew it until the tank ran dry and then made a successful landing. I was elated. However, the poor airplane did not look anything like it had started out as, and probably weighed twice as much.

So, it is doable. You can teach yourself to fly RC without an instructor.

But, you will absolutely not be able to do so without making mistakes, and having crashes. On a pond, that probably means sinking your model and radio equipment.

That said, I am 100% certain that if you buy RealFlight RC simulator and practice, practice, practice on it (which is a lot of fun BTW) you can successfully fly your first model and have it survive. I am totally convinced you can do so. Get the RealFlight as others have also mentioned.
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Old 11-28-2009, 12:49 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

One word; Pray

Pray you don't hurt yourself, pray that you don't hurt anyone else nearby, pray you don't hit power lines or someones property. Other than that, go get'em. Please... Please... Please take video and post it on youtube.

If you happen to be an atheist... ignore the above.
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Old 11-28-2009, 12:59 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

LOL - funny or what, I had my first RC experience with a 2 channel 'Gentle Lady' glider, even tht was harowing and required repairs.

Taking off and landing on water takes an additional amount of skill in most cases, so to learn to fly unaided and take off on water WILL end in tears.

I have seem many experienced RC pilots make a hash of water plane flying!

Seriously, please seek some help . . .

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Old 11-28-2009, 02:45 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

you 'are' doing the unthinkable, go ahead and try it , then you'll see that it isn't going to happen like you planed. no body can write it on line so that you can do it by yourself.
the sim is the best start, but just a start, things like the distance of your plane and speed only come with time and experience. everybody posted above is right. and please make a video.
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Old 11-28-2009, 02:55 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...


ORIGINAL: 42etus

Have a boat available, you'll be needing it. Seriously. [:@] [sm=drowning.gif]
Paul
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Old 11-28-2009, 04:00 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

Being a full scale pilot is a serious detriment, as many of us have found out.

Under the conditions you have given yourself, your chances of any success are very slim. I would suggest you re consider your options and take a different path to get to where you want to go................
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Old 11-28-2009, 04:09 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

See if you can find an US. Aircore kit. They are the best planes to learn on very durable..........Flight Sim is a must.. Try to keep making left turns fist, you will not get as much P-Factor and you will not have to use the rudder to keep the nose up in your turns and much as you do on right turns, always remember to put the stick to the low wing if the plane is coming at you... This will help you level in flight....

Good Luck
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Old 11-28-2009, 05:31 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

ORIGINAL: ClearedForTheApproach

I intend to violate one of the core principles of R/C aircraft flying, and I'm hoping you can help me succeed.
You've got a thread "Woes on the Alpha Trainer" in this forum that has gone without acknowledgement with some "Golden Advice" from JohnBuckner... At the least you should thank him for the tips that will give you a fighting chance....... Good luck on the first flight/dip in the water


I am also a rated pilot in full scale aircraft. (I'm told this is a handicap?) Single-engine, multi-engine, commercial, instrument, and seaplane ratings.
That means very little to nothing for this hobby (in the beginning stages).... seriously, I was there and wearing those 'same shoes' you have on....long ago

.... again, Good Luck and have another plane/RX/battery/servo compliment for the next day's outing.
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Old 11-28-2009, 05:53 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

I've been flying RC since around 1984 or so..before that I flew a little Ukie and rubber free flight. My first RC plane was a Piece'O Cake, which is nothing more than a 2 channel 2-meter glider with a Cox .049 up front, landing gear and a 2-channel radio-(rudder and elevator) At the time I did not belong to a club, and my finances were limited, so i set out to do it alone. To make matters worse, my radio of choice (and economy) was a little 2-stick 2-channel Futaba..rudder on the right, elevator on the left. There was a large field that was use to grow johnson grass for hay, and it was about 3 feet tall, maybe more, when I made my first flights. Most of those ended up with the plane nose down in the hay, as I got better, I would try to land it closer to me, sometimes I was successful other times not. I made a few repairs in that time, but eventually, I could get her up, fly around till the Black Widow quit, and bring it back without any damage..usually. I was able to teach myself the BASICS of rc flight, but I had a huge open field, a soft "impact zone" and a very lightly loaded, slow flying aircraft. I feel that the Alpha would make a good trainer with some instruction, but not solo, and surely not with the added weight/drag of the floats. You do have an advantage in that you know what makes a plane fly, bank, pitch, what flaring on landing means, power settings, etc. The disadvantge you have, as another poster mentioned, is that you don not have the physical feedback from being in the aircraft when it stalls, climbs, banks, etc. That takes a little time, also, disorientation may be a problem too. My advice? Put wheels on her, and seek out a club or at least a good, experienced RC pilot to help..barring that, put aside the Alpha for a bit, and get a 2-meter glider (rudder-elevator, nothing hot), an Old-Timer, or a Sig Kadet Senior..any of these aircraft can fly slow enough to keep up with, and will fly at speeds that other planes would fall out of the sky at..a GWS slow stick, properly set up and on a calm day would be okay too. Then find a big, open field with high grass, get away from anything/anybody that can get hit, and make a few tentative flights.
Just my 2 cents
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Old 11-28-2009, 05:59 PM
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Default RE: Please help me do the unthinkable ...

When I was stationed in San Diego in the mid 80's there was a Jock Fighter Pilot with many hours in a "Tomcat". Had the same desire as you stated except that he built a very nice jet for his first.

He did real good until the wheels left the ground.

I see a similar result. My biggest concern is that you will get the plane airborne and do fine untilthe plane iscoming at you, then someone could get seriously injured including yourself.

Set ego and pride aside if you wish to succeed. Risk vs Reward just ain't worth the potential outcome.

LLD
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