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First balsa kit recommendations

Old 11-05-2022, 06:26 PM
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Steelman93
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Default First balsa kit recommendations

So I have been reading the “which should be my first balsa build threads” and have found them to be full of great info, but a bit confusing and a little out of date in that several of the kits recommended that caught my interest are no longer available. I wanted to ask for recommendations based on my situation.

I am new to RC, but very much enjoying it and ready to take the step into actually building. My first plane was a foam cub, and my second an ARF stick. Both electric.

Can someone make a few suggestions as to a decent starting kit? Because I have a high wing trainer, and a Stick I would be more interested in something a bit different than either of those. The location I fly at in southeast Texas is quite windy so smaller airplanes tend to not do as well. If I am on an electric I am more interested in the 1 meter and up wingspan planes.

As far as experience building planes…I have none other than the ARF. However, I did put together quite a few model rockets in my day, I have built several pieces of heirloom quality furniture and when I was in college I designed and built a 2 foot long balsa truss bridge and balsa lifting hook for my strength of materials class. I may not have modeling experience, but I am reasonably handy and have worked with balsa. Additionally, I am in a great club with a lot of experienced hands willing to give advice.

I have always loved biplanes and have seen the Hog Bipe recommended but they are not available from Sig. If anyone could recommend a few other kits for me to try I would greatly appreciate it. I won a Ziroli Stuka short kit at a raffle so my goal is to progress enough to be able to build that. I know starting there is not a good idea.


TIA
Old 11-06-2022, 06:56 AM
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How much are ya lookin to $pend?

Balsa USA has this 60" wingspan balsa Biplane kit that looks kinda sorta close to the Hog Bipe for $290.......

https://shop.balsausa.com/product_p/449.htm
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Steelman93 (11-06-2022)
Old 11-06-2022, 01:30 PM
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I wanted to keep it less than 600 for everythingZ. That Bipe looks great!
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Old 11-06-2022, 02:05 PM
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See my answer in your duplicate post, over in the Kit Building part of the forum...
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Steelman93 (11-06-2022)
Old 11-07-2022, 09:16 AM
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Even though you have a high wing trainer and a stick type model those are among your best bets for a first build. As you build you may find that what you build can be better than what you buy. You mention being involved with a club. There is usually at least one guy in every club that has a bunch of kits that might sell you one.
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Steelman93 (11-07-2022)
Old 11-07-2022, 10:02 AM
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Thanks. My club has a bunch of guys who are super helpful and wiling to teach but most have planes for sale. The kits I have run across are way above my ability. (But hopefully not for too long)
Old 11-07-2022, 12:07 PM
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A fun and inexpensive bipe would be one of these https://www.balsaworkbench.com/?page_id=3189

Simple straight forward build and a fun sport plane,, would fall into the price range I'd think

He sell short kits, but gathering the rest of what you need should be all that hard or expensive

good luck
Old 11-08-2022, 08:07 AM
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Ebay lists a 4-40 bipe you can bid on to win and not be short anything.
I agree that the 4-40 bipe is a good introduction to biplanes.,
if you get outbid, consider the Phaeton ll bipe. I've flown both, the 4-40 was my favorite
I have a 4-60 bipe right now.
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Steelman93 (11-09-2022)
Old 11-08-2022, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Steelman93 View Post
Thanks. My club has a bunch of guys who are super helpful and wiling to teach but most have planes for sale. The kits I have run across are way above my ability. (But hopefully not for too long)
Regarding ability, that is one place where the various forums can really come in handy. You may have to set your search parameters to the beginning or time or at least the beginning of the internet but kits that were ever common at any particular time usually have a build thread someplace. This can often be helpful when dealing with construction problems. One pitfall that you may run into is old/vintage kits. Some of them can be real treasures for the builder. Balsa USA, Sig, and Midwest for instance tend to have good manuals. Royal/Marutaka prices tend to get driven up by the collectors and they are often complex and or require a lot of carving. Sterling kits can be very hit or miss on the quality of their wood and often all you get for instructions are construction notes on the plans. Goldberg and Great planes also made some good kits as well. It might be worth your while to hit a local swap meet. Even if you have to drive a couple of hours they often have a lot of entertainment value just in seeing what is out there. As long as you aren't trying to buy something with perceived collector value such as a Top Flite red box P-51 kits can often be found for a reasonable price. While you don't want to get in over your head (though it reads in the original post that you have the capacity to complete a complex project) there is something to be said for the motto of just do it. It is a big investment but it doesn't have to be the perfect airplane. Look on it as your apprentice work. Take a look at manzanolaser.com. They are mostly short kits but he sells a lot of accessories. Many of the kits have build threads and in particular with the Tritle designs, the guy is still alive posts on various forums.
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Old 11-11-2022, 08:30 AM
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what you could do is look at the sig sr. that was my first build plane and it was a lot of fun to put together it taught me a lot about building and the book and plans are very easy to understand
that build turned me into a plans monster now I only build off of plans and that was in 1984 I've been having a great time ever since
Old 12-07-2022, 04:32 PM
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You can't go wrong with a Sig kit. Most of their kits use simple/basic construction techniques. For many of us (myself included) our first plane was a Sig Kadet that had to be built. Consider the Kadet or Senorita for your first kit.
Old 12-08-2022, 07:26 AM
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I would have to agree on building a Sig Kadet kit. As mentioned above, the Kadet comes in several different versions:
  • Kadet Mk II, which is slab sided and probably the easiest to build
  • Kadet Senior, the largest of the bunch and probably the hardest to build since it's a stick build from the wing back and has clear plastic windows that have to be installed
  • Kadet Seniorita, a smaller version of the Senior for smaller building and flying areas or engines
Now comes the issue. According to the Sig website, ALL R/C KITS ARE SOLD OUT!!!!!!
Old 12-08-2022, 11:56 AM
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BalsaBob
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Originally Posted by Hydro Junkie View Post
Now comes the issue. According to the Sig website, ALL R/C KITS ARE SOLD OUT!!!!!!
Unfortunately, Backordering has now become the norm for many kits and ARFs. If you really want one of the kits, Backorder it ... if you wait for it to be in stock, you may not get one.

Bob
Old 12-11-2022, 06:28 PM
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J330
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I ordered from SIG twice in my life. The last order was a Four Star 40 kit through TowerHobbies, and I returned it because it was mostly plywood and not good quality at all.

Everything else, I get here,

​​​​​​https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...iorita-kit-NIB

or here;

https://gravesrc.com/osmwfifty6kit-o...-airplane-kit/
Old 12-27-2022, 05:50 AM
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J330
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https://www.aerealtyinc.com/real-est...zuma-ia-50171/

Anyone interested in starting a new company where SIG used to be?

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