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What has changed in 8 years?

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Old 01-17-2018, 10:50 AM
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kksiu2002
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Default What has changed in 8 years?

Hi.
I haven't flown in 8 years or paid much attention to rc during this time. Was messing with gas engine went I lost interest and quit. Sold all my stuff too. I think it was the complexity that made it no fun any more...like it was too stressful.

Stopped by a flying field the other day...and thinking of starting back up again.
The guys at the field were all flying electrics and using transmitters with stubby antennas.
They weren't sure if FM transmitter is allowed anymore.
I didn't see a Frequency Board like we used to have.

I'm thinking of buying used stuff on Ebays...like a simple sporty 40 trainer and a simple 4 channel FM transmitter to keep the cost down AMAP.
And I'm old school...so I don't really learn about the short stubby 2.4 Gz transmissions or mess with Lithium batteries. I want to keep things as simple and relaxed as possible (ASAP). I think glow and FM is what I'm most comfortable with.

What do you think?

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Old 01-17-2018, 11:51 AM
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72mhz is still legal for model aircraft use.....it's a great idea you have it's what I did just a few years back and I'm having a blast I missed
it alot when I realized how much fun it was.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:40 PM
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It depends on your club for FM. If there is a frequency board or not. Fewer people use FM now, so there is rarely a conflict. There are often nice programable FM sets for very cheap, like $20. They are fine, but if you find one, make sure you get quite a few receiver crystals to match, as they are pretty much not available any more. It is nice to have some choices of delta or V tail even if you don't use the rates and endpoint or mixing. I would go with 2.4 myself if starting over even just for less trouble with frequencies, and routing the antennae. As for brands IDK. Make sure you get a few receivers that match, as things change over the years on that too. FASST, FHSS.... Lots of guys like Flysky, Futaba and Spectrum, and lots hate them after a couple crashes. Locals seem to prefer certain brands... I think a .40 is a nice size, even a .25 or .15. Anything less I really like, but flying time is limited from wind and muffler rules......
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Old 01-17-2018, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by kksiu2002 View Post
Hi.
..... I think it was the complexity that made it no fun any more...like it was too stressful.
...so I don't really learn about the short stubby 2.4 Gz transmissions or mess with Lithium batteries. I want to keep things as simple and relaxed as possible (ASAP). I think glow and FM is what I'm most comfortable with.

What do you think?
What I think is that you may be contradicting yourself. But It's your money, you spend it how you want. Keep on reading....

Here's my take:

72mHz is still legal to use with the FCC, so whatever you find it is still useable. But the options and opportunities really open up if you are willing to spend some time to "understand" (because you don't need to learn) the new radios with the stubby antennas.

If you say that the complexity is what drove you away the first time, what will be different with glow this time? The most user-friendly equipment right now is the plug-and-play electric systems. No glow plugs to fiddle with, no carb needles to adjust. No starter, no glow plug heater, no field box.

Don't take me wrong, Most of my fleet is glow or gas powered, but the quote above is what prompted me into writing this.

You simply cannot beat 2.4 Ghz and an electric set-up if you want simplicity.

Hope this helps a bit

Rafael
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Old 01-17-2018, 02:32 PM
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Electric is simple. I use it for indoor. We lost our gym now, but I will use some of them outside I hope. I just seem to have bad luck with batteries. They puff up on me, and speed controllers and even motors melted on me. I have only had a handfull of flights on the outdoor ones with LiPo. The LiFe one I do like though. A bit heavy, but works well, as I don't use them often. That is likely why the LiPos are my problem. I would change if I had to I guess, but have so many glow motors that it seems wrong to get three $25 or $100 batteries, when a .40 can be had with a RTF used plane for $50 with a bit of searching. I like control line too for even more simplicity, that would be another story. I am not sure of the OP's thoughts, but you got mine for free.
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Old 01-19-2018, 08:11 PM
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All of what you're talking about is doable. FM is still legal to fly... although it might depend on the club or field and their rules if it's a private organization. There's so much better technology then what you're contemplating though. I have to admit although I definitely fly 2.4ghz radios, I still have my trusty Futaba FM radio that I use in several planes. My area doesn't have issues like other urban/rural areas might have... IE I have nothing that interferes with my FM transmission... So yeah.. FM might work for you, but check it out first.. we live in a signal rich environment and what worked 8yrs ago might not be favorable these days.

I'm not sure why you're shying away from 2.4ghz technology though... at the lower end of the radio market a 2.4ghz radio is no different then a 72mhz in how it's operated... the biggest difference is the receiver needs to be "bound" to the transmitter... nothing more then pushing a few buttons is all... and the signal performance in 2.4 is more reliable in many, if not all areas.

Nicads... hmm.. well... battery technology has far surpassed NiCads.... if we're talking about receiver packs.... You can still get NiCads (generally for some reason they cost more then current LiFe (lithium phosphorous) packs).. and NiCads have nowhere near the performance and reliability that a LiFe battery has, not to mention the power and voltage. LiFe batteries have 25% more voltage, and most of time have twice the capacity... at half the weight... and they're cheaper then NiCads these days... Another benefit is they can be charged in 30 minutes.. and the list of advantages just goes on from there.. They hold a charge indefinitely... they have no memory.. and they last several hundred cycles or more. I don't know as I've not ever killed a LiFe battery, or even had one go bad. You do need a current charger for newer chemistry batteries.. but those current chargers usually can charge anything on the planet... even your old NiCads.

Glow engines are definitely still relevant though in my mind. Many of us enjoy the smell, the sounds, and the slight bit of tinkering (not much really) it takes to run them.. If you can overlook the cost of glow-fuel (I really don't care what it costs..I buy it)...and you can get it local (shipping fuel can creep up the costs too).. then run your glow engines.. that hasn't changed at all in many many years.. they've just gotten better really... although selection isn't what it used to be thanks to the gas engines (I'm a fan of those as well)..

So if you want to stay in that time machine.. have at it. It's all still available... It's not as good or as cheap as current technology is though. If it's a learning curve issue.. well... then you might have some learning(or re-learning) to do.... I would encourage you to learn about newer technology though... It's far superior. I'm one that could easily use old technology... and still own some of it. I've got a beautiful Futaba 8UA 8ch. transmitter that was my back up... it's a great tranny, does anything that any current tranny does.. but I won't use it... why?... because I'm using stuff that's so much better now.. yes I had to learn it, and the only way I really knew how good it is was to learn it. It's your choice... Nothings changed if you don't want it too.. but I can say there's a whole new world of RC out there. Good luck and welcome back. It's a great hobby.

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Old 01-20-2018, 07:32 AM
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Another opinion-
If you want to get back into it with what you feel you already know and are comfortable with, go for it! Glad to have you back!

Myself, I think you're eventually (just a matter of time) going to find yourself replacing any/all the "old school" you buy now. Thought being there, don't go crazy building a hoard of what you're likely going to learn is badly outdated. Purchase what you need to go flying, then go do that. While flying, thinking you're going to be exposed to some new ideas. One being things are likely much simpler and more reliable than they used to be (ESPECIALLY regarding gas!), and prices have become very affordable. Yes, there's a learning curve. Just keep an open mind.... -Al
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Old 01-22-2018, 07:59 AM
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2.4 is definitely more convenient, for sure. But is 2.4 really better?

I was talking to a current club member. He claims he and others on 2.4 frequently get a "hit" in a certain corner of the flying field. By "hit", he meant it was a 1 second loss of signal. He blamed it on the metal structures in that direction.

But...I flew there for 10 years with FM, and never got a "hit" at all.

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Old 01-22-2018, 11:04 AM
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Regarding 2.4 and gas, nearly all the RF (ignition) related precautions you had to deal with on FM are pretty much history. You do what you can, and you still carefully range check, but as long as your spark plug cap is on all the way, you're generally good to go. You'd likely be pretty surprised at what you can get away with. What does that tell you about random "hits"? 2.4 is about a solid as a rock as long as you're running decent radio equipment and not trying to cheap out on receivers.

In the hundred years or so I've been flying, I've been hearing about "hits" in the 2 furthest corners of the pattern since I started flying. My guess is those "hits" are far more likely temporary loss of orientation....
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Old 01-22-2018, 11:52 AM
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I can't say which might be better.. I've flown at my club field for over 20yrs and never had any problem with either 2.4 or 72.. never a glitch..... and I still fly both... depending on what model I want. When I switched to 2.4ghz, I didn't just change all my planes over, but most new planes I've built or assembled got the newer 2.4 technology...

I've got at least 12 planes on 2.4ghz, and more then that on 72mhz.. mostly older sport planes on the 72mhz.. with the more sophisticated planes on 2.4.. as I wanted the telemetry that offers signal performance data...... as well as the Rx battery voltage data... and many other features that 72mhz just can't handle. As well with 2.4 I can add up to 3 satellite Rx's for more layers of redundancy... So check it out... 2.4ghz in that aspect is FAR better... it's in another league... and it doesn't matter what brand.. they're all pretty good.. and each offers so much more the 72mhz..

For what you're wanting and interested in it's very true a 72mhz radio would suffice just fine... or on the other hand there's some excellent 2.4ghz radios in the lower end of the price range that would work very well too. In any and all cases... more then which frequency to go with.. definitely look into current battery technology... "LiFe" batteries for the Rx/flight-pack are the only way to go...The batteries are more important the either frequency.. as those are what makes them work... and they both work very well with the better batteries.
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Old 01-26-2018, 12:36 PM
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What are and where do you get the LiFe flight pack batteries? I just ordered new nicad flight pack batteries for couple of my planes as I shouldn't trust the old ones. I'm getting back in too after a few years. However I'm a hoarder and kept all my stuff.

Thanks,
Jim
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Old 01-26-2018, 01:03 PM
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I get mine here, Canadian $ are cheaper than US, but still a bit pricey.Batteries & Accessories : TBOLTRC.COM, - Giant Scale R/C! Hobby King has smaller ones like 800 mah square packs for cheaper. They are not as bulletproof as the A123 type. You need a special charger for them, as they are 3.3V per cell, but not as explosive as the LiPo. They are LiFe, Lithium Ferrite. I still make mine up from dollar store packs, but now we have $4 stores, so the last ones I got were the newer style NiMh ones that have a long shelf life. You don't have to charge them within a day of flying. Enelopes are a common brand, but I got something similar much cheaper here for about $1 a piece on sale. 1200mah AA or around 800mah AAA size.

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Old 01-27-2018, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by cubfloater View Post
What are and where do you get the LiFe flight pack batteries? I just ordered new nicad flight pack batteries for couple of my planes as I shouldn't trust the old ones. I'm getting back in too after a few years. However I'm a hoarder and kept all my stuff.

Thanks,
Jim
Here's an 1100mah LiFe that's served me well for my 1.20 size and smaller glow planes... running 5 servos(4 of which are hi-torque). Plenty of power for 4-5 flights easily.. maybe more, but I usually fly 4-5 times and my meter still shows about 68% consistently after a days flying. There's also a 700mah available.. that would work great for anything .40 size and smaller... and they're all very lightweight.

https://hobbyking.com/en_us/zippy-fl...___store=en_us

Here's a charger that's given me good service for about 4yrs now, and it charges any battery on the planet I think. It's AC/DC which is also very handy. These are referred to as "four-button" chargers, just an FYI if you want to Google.. as there's many varieties of these... and most are very easy to use.

https://hobbyking.com/en_us/imax-b6a...___store=en_us

LiFe batteries charge just like LiPo... example: the 1100mah battery(linked above) charges at 1.1 amp... so it takes only about an hour.

You will need a balance extension(buy them with the batteries where-ever you buy batteries)... as that's needed to charge a LiFe battery... and the balance input and pos/neg input from the battery get hooked to the charger for charging. There's also digital meters that work with all RC batteries.. and they're equipped to read LiFe's (again they'll read LiPo's, Nimh, NiCad,)... and some of those meters even have a "servo test" input/control to test servos. So just a little info there.

I didn't get rid of any of my chargers either just because I got this one... I use all my chargers as needed, and I can charge 3 or more packs at at time... I do monitor my batteries while charging.. it just makes sense... Another tid-bit too... you don't have to remove LiFe's from the plane to charge them. They're much more stable then LiPo's.

So just study it and shop it.. I've bought larger LiFe's (in the 3000-4000mah) range from Buddy's RC... and those can run a whole flight pack and ignition(with the right equipment). Good luck with it.

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Old 08-14-2018, 08:02 AM
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as far as simple,....2.4 is about as simple as it gets. no concern about frequency colors, no flag on the antenna. turn he switches on and fly.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:59 PM
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Hi!
But using LiFe batteries could be a problem with it's high voltage (6,6V or higher newly charged) in conjunction with older servos that can only stand 4,8V.
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Old 08-25-2018, 06:52 AM
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What has change in 8 years? Try 30 year. It has been 30 years for me and I think EVERYTHING has changed. Everyone is SO different. You do not like complexity, I thrive on complexity. Because of my history I am attracted to the OS .60 two strokes and equivalent OS 4 strokes. I trust the OS brand. I am flying the Sbach on my new sim. No take off or flying problems. I can do stunts but they are crude. My landings are pathetic but practice will fix that. I can land just fine but hitting the runway is my current sim problem. Learning a LOT in regards to flying towards myself. Learning how to switch my mind in regards to the controls. Loving it! Onwards!

ps: In regards to RC flying being "simple and relaxed"..... I cannot even imagine that... ever
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Old 08-27-2018, 07:45 PM
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Lee... keep thriving man. There's enough complexity to keep you busy for quite a while. Sims are a great tool... but haven't taken the place of hands on experience. That hasn't changed a bit... nor has flying towards and away. So you sound like you'll be right where you should be in this day and age while you learn newer techniques and technology.

OS engines are few and far between.. and actually are history. There's still a few modern four-stroke engines available.. but you'll pay a hefty price... with that I suggest looking in the classifieds for your old-school favorites... as there's very few if any dealers these days that have anything on hand. So yeah... I was there 30yrs ago.. have been here all these years too.

We all have stories from those days... some of us still have planes we fly too. So 8yrs or 30yrs... doesn't matter. Get a plane, learn how it all works and fly. That hasn't changed at all.
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Old 08-28-2018, 02:30 AM
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Well D... one of the things I liked about RC, back in the day (1963), was that it was NOT mainstream. It was out there and obviously growing but only a select few had interest in it. I suppose it is still that way in some regards. Spending time building something and then smashing it to smithereens was not something most kids were interested in.

What are the quality engine brands now days? I am interested in .60 two stroke and .70-.90 four stroke? Yes I am looking at use engines on Ebay.

I am a life long RC Modeler and that is not going to change. I have a .45 Enya and a Super Sportster 40. After some repair I will put it in the air. It has some serious hanger rash. I will also buy a .60 size RTF so I can have something that is fast and ready to fly. I will also purchase another kit. I have some scratch build plans but that will not materialize. TOO much time (I have additional hobbies and interests)
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Old 08-28-2018, 09:19 AM
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The engine types and sizes you mentioned are still around. OS still makes a great engine if you're wanting to stay with glow-fuel. The AX line is the hot-rod in 2-stroke, and the V engines(IE .62V, .95V, etc.. ) are jewels as well. Other engines have come and gone over the years... and there's still parts available in different places for most of them.

Kits... kits.. well... Sig still has some, Great Planes might have a few still available, although with the recent Tower Hobbies changes, many of their main brands are "not available at this time"... or who knows... There's also several laser-cutter type short-kits that are gaining ground... basically all the tough cutting is done, and you provide your own flat-stock and sticks/etc.. If your interested in old school kits, shop the classifieds on this site, or EBay, or even just Google it.. there's plenty left out there to build.. Not as cheap as they once were, but money isn't an issue if it's truly a passion.

In this day and age with modern equipment(radios, batteries, chargers, servos, etc..), if you take your time and study, and do it all correctly, everyone will do fine. The equipment in general if you buy true hobby quality components is much better then it used to be. Batteries have changed the game field too. Gone are the days of having to make sure everything is plugged into the wall-wart charger the night before.. then hoping they last for a day... These days a good charger and good batteries will have you flying with a full charge in an hour... and it will last days... with power to spare.

I'm with you though, I'm old school, before the days of ARF's.... long before. Still have a Ringmaster up in my garage, and a few other oldies in my history department.. Just keep studying and you'll find what works for you... doesn't matter how long you've been gone... what matters really is what/where do you want to go with it now. I love classic planes... I'm still flying planes from 25yrs ago. I'm competing in IMAC in 2 weeks with a plane I built 16yrs ago... so there's definitely hope for old school stuff.... mixed with modern technology... it's a great combo.
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Old 09-05-2018, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by DGrant View Post
OS engines are few and far between.. and actually are history.
I received it in the mail last night. I am still smiling today. It may be a clunker but it is right down my alley. It looks and feels "right". If it runs well I will put some miles on it for sure.

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Old 09-07-2018, 12:51 PM
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Very nice Lee! That looks to be possibly an SF engine? Can't make the size from here, but if it's an SF they're powerful, and still relevant when you can find them in good shape. Congrats!
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Old 09-07-2018, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by DGrant View Post
Congrats!
Thanks DG. Yes it has rings. It is an OS 61 Max SF. I was the highest Ebay auction bidder at $87 I think it was. I received a tank and a really nice stand from the UK. I have a prop on it. Have fuel, plug, igniter, on the to-buy list. I have two Sullivan's, and old power panel and fuel pump from the early 80's. Have a 90% complete compact tote box and a big clunker tote box from the 80's. Have a field selected. Yes I am getting my feet back in.

ps: Don't really need the speed. I am finding I am comfortable at 50-60 mph

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