Thursday, January 26, 2017

Flying Remote Control Airplanes (Part 4)

Welcome back to part 4 of this series. Part 1 covered location and pre-flight check lists. Part 2 covered Resources to help you. Part 3 covered Touch-and-Go Landings. Now let us look at some important aspects of taking flight.

Taking Flight: If you have not read the instructions for your aircraft and controller, stop and go get them and look up a very important fact. Listed in the specifications will be a statement specific to your plane receiver and transmitter. This range is most often listed as the maximum and is a good guideline, but there are many factors that will reduce this range. The condition of the batteries in the controller are the most relevant to the range. As the controller batteries weaken, your expected range shortens. The charge on the battery pack in your plane which not only powers the servos also powers your receiver. Most importantly, have fresh batteries in the controller and a good charge on the plane battery pack.

Why is this so important? Turn on your controller first, then plug in or turn on the switch for the plane battery pack. You will notice that the trim controls you have set on your transmitter will be activated and the plane will respond by automatically adjusting to these settings. When you are in flight and you get out of range or your batteries become weak, your settings for trim will fail acting as if you turned off your transmitter and your plane will become unresponsive and pretty much do whatever it wants and very likely crash.

If your plane gets out of range, it is highly suggested that you close the gap between the plane and transmitter as quickly as possible. In other words, I hope you are good at the 40 yard dash. If you are able to get control, turn your plane so that is flying back closer to the transmitter and then land soon.

Also, remember that electrical interference from high power lines will also affect your transmitter's ability to reach out and be heard by your receiver.

Remember as your plane lifts off the ground to perform any fine tuning that may be required on your trim settings to ensure you have level flight with the controls in their neutral position. Adjust your throttle down enough to maintain level flight but not go to fast to cause you a shorter time to perform these adjustments.

Now you are flying. Your job now is to "NOT CRASH". The best way to crash is to overdrive your controls on the transmitter. Use gentle, gradual adjustments to see how your plane reacts. There will be plenty of time for acrobatics later. Again, don't let your plane get out of range... unless you want to practice your running skills.

Good Luck and stay tuned.

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