RCU Forums - View Single Post - Becoming a Good at F3A - What does it take?
Old 09-17-2016, 05:48 PM
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If have the funds available, a 2M plane is the way to go. Bigger does fly better. You can look at buying something used or shoot for something new. The Vanquish is at the lower end of the cost scale, but it is not necessarily cheap. By the time I got done outfitting mine I had spent about $1500-1600 (airframe, motor, esc, servos, receiver, etc). The batteries are not included in that total. Based on what you have said it appears to me that you do most of your flying at a local park. I would definitely consider joining a formal club at a proper field. Having people around who have more experience than yourself is always helpful.

Without trying to be condescending I think that an honest evaluation of your skills is probably a good place to start; making good landings become very important as airplanes get more expensive. I know that it sounds silly, but high performance typically means low weight which translates into more delicate airframes. They can take a little bit of abuse, but not much. I always suggest mastering the basics before moving into more capable airplanes. If you have that down pat,then go for it, if not, maybe a larger intermediate plane (say 60-65" wingspan) might be a good stepping stone, specially if you are used to flying the smaller planes at a local park. These .50-.70 sized planes, if electric, can be flown on 5S which is 1/2 a pack of what is normally used in the full blown 2m planes.

Finally, I would suggest patience and perseverance. Unless you are incredibly gifted it will take time and it won't come easily. I have asked a couple of the guys who I considered to be good pilots how many practice flights they get a year, and the answer has been fairly consistent: 500-600. Right now, I am lucky to get 200 so I know that I will probably always be lagging behind (and I have the scores to prove it ), but that does not mean that I do not enjoy it. This type of flying is more of a mental game than simply being good with the sticks and there is where the challenge lies.

Good luck,


PD. I have seen the Vanquish fly P17 and it can do it, but seems to take a lot of power and skill (Edge 540 is a good pilot by the way...). My personal opinion is that it will get you through Advanced quite nicely but a more modern design might be in order for Masters and beyond.

Last edited by viva_peru; 09-17-2016 at 05:54 PM.