Model Airplane News #03


Welcome to this third edition of the Plane Talk newsletter.

First order of business is an apology for my ineptitude with the links to Andrew Rosz’s book, “Basic Flight Instruction” in the last issue.  A kindly soul pointed out that the ‘buy now’ links were not working and that has now been corrected.  I must get past my ‘trial and error’ version of html programming!

The good news is that you get another chance and I’ve repeated the link here.  As I said last time around, having bought it myself, you won’t find a better book on learning to fly.

IN this issue you will find:

  • Featured article:  “Discover the Thrill of Model Airplane Combat

  • A link into a review of Hobby Lobby’s Uzi X Micro ARF by Tim Tworek

  • A lead to the best flying training guide available anywhere.

  • The News roundup

  • ..and this issue’s Pit Lane humour

Featured Article

Discover the Thrill of Model Airplane Combat

The sport of model airplane combat has been around now for decades and in recent years has grown exponentially. The human race is naturally competitive and it’s only natural that modelers are going to find a way to pit their flying skills against each other.

In combat, competitors tie a lengthy streamer to the rear of their model, and take to the skies in an attempt to cut their opponents streamer with their propeller or wing. Category after category has been created to allow all sorts of planes to enter combat. What used to be reserved for balsa and ply-wood built planes has now expanded to allow for much more durable RC model airplanes that are even capable of surviving mid-air collisions (sometimes!).

Balsa, Foam, and SPAD model airplanes all take to the skies to see who is Top Dog. Combat clubs can be found in just about every country on the planet. The two largest RC model airplane combat associations are the Radio Control Combat Association (RCCA) and the National Sports Combat Club (NSCC).

Just about every model airplane combat group has one thing in common. Your model airplane and you competitor’s must both fall into the same category to make the combat fair. A few examples of these classes are; Slow Survivable Combat (SSC), Open Classes, and Scale. Each of these classes have strict requirements about the size of the engine used, the overall weight of the aircraft, the size of the prop, and in some cases even the shape of the fuselage must conform to the rules.

When fighting in the SSC class, a single round of combat lasts 5 minutes. You must have a .15 engine and your airplane is required to weigh no less than 2.5 pounds. There are no restrictions on your airplane’s wingspan, but the overall wing area must be at least 400 square inches. All combating RC model airplanes use an unmodified Master Airscrew 8×3 prop and the maximum allowable RPM is 17,500rpm at launch. RPM testing is often performed before combat starts to make sure everyone is conforming to the rules.

At one time model airplane combat got pretty fast and furious with high speeds and a high attrition rate as planes ploughed into each other and into the ground. The Slow Surviveable Class was developed to counter this tendency and the rules produce a big, slow flying airplane without an excess of power. As a result, this class is much more suitable for beginners, the models survive much better and can often be used for other forms of flying.

The other classes of combat, Open Classes and Scale, all have different rules and restrictions regarding weight, engine, and appearance but the objective of all of them is to ensure that it is the skill of the pilot that is being tested and not the airplane.

What all of these classes do have in common is some sort of point system. Combat contestants earn points for things such as cutting their opponents streamers, continuous flying during combat, launching within the set time limit, as well as points for every foot of streamer left when landing. Points can also be deducted for not engaging an opponent in combat. Pilots that avoid fights will be penalized. If your model airplane crosses various safety lines which define the combat area this will also earn penalty deductions.

Model airplane combat whether RC or Control Line can add a very exciting element to an already enjoyable hobby. So what’s holding you back? Give it a try, inquire with other flyers at your local flying field. Large combat associations might have strict rules, but feel free to make up your own when you set out pit your model airplane flying skills against your friends.

Learning to Fly

We all struggle when learning to fly our models.  Sometimes they don’t seem so much like models as little monsters with a mind of their own.  Well now is your chance to latch into the very best guidance written on the subject.  Andrew Rosz is a master of the craft, both flying and teaching how to fly.  Over the years he assembled his knowledge and expertise into the acknowledged master class in his book; “Basic Flight Instruction”.

The good news is that you can now get it right here.

Click right here on “Basic Flight Instruction” and learn from the Master!

Review – from RCGroups

Hobby Lobby’s Uzi X Micro ARF Review


Wingspan: 22.75″
Wing Area: 227 sq. in.
Weight: 6.75 oz.
Length: 24.25″
Wing Loading: 4.28 oz/sq. ft.
Servos: (3) Hitec 55’s
Transmitter: Hitec
Receiver: Hitec HFS-05MS
Battery: Poly-Quest 20c 2 cell 7.4v 400mah lipo
Motor: MPJet 22/7-45D brushless motor
ESC: Jeti Advance PLUS 4 Amp Brushless Controller
Manufacturer: Potensky
Available From: Hobby-Lobby International

The UZI X 3D Micro Bipe, which is manufactured by Potensky and imported for Hobby-Lobby International, is a compact EPP biplane that can be taken and flown just about anywhere. With is low parts count and pre-covered foam surfaces this plane is ready to go from box to flight ready in no time at all.

This UZI X bipe, with its low wing loading, can easily be flown both outdoors and indoors, making it a year around airplane. So let’s take a look at this versatile and terrific flying biplane!

Kit Contents

Pit lane humour…

Captain Speaking:

“I’m sure everyone noticed the loss of an engine, however the reduction in weight and drag will mean we’ll be flying much more efficiently now.”

Sue and Bob, a pair of tight wads, lived in the mid west, and had been married for years.

Bob had always want to go flying. The desire deepened each time a barnstormer flew into town to offer rides.

Bob would ask, and Sue would say, “No way, ten dollars is ten dollars.”

The years went by, and Bob figured he didn’t have much longer, so he got Sue out to the show, explaining, it’s free to watch, let’s at least watch.

And once he got there the feeling become real strong and ended up in an argument.

The Pilot, between flights, overheard, listened to their problem, and said, “I’ll tell you what, I’ll take you up flying, and if you don’t say a word the ride is on me, but if you make one sound, you pay ten dollars.

So off they flew. The Pilot doing as many rolls and dives as he could.

Heading to the ground as fast as the plane could go, and pulling out of the dive at just the very last second. Not a word. Finally he admitted defeat and went back the airfield.

“I’m surprised, why didn’t you say anything?”

“Well I almost said something when Sue fell out, but ten dollars is ten dollars.”

News Roundup

There are too many summer carnival and open day events to count involving model airplanes but here are just a few of them.  The first one here is interesting as the latest craze seems to be ‘mini-pulls’ with model trucks using model airplane engines emulating their big brother monster trucks in pulling weights and competing to see who can convert fuel into noise and dust most efficiently.

Lower down you’ll find a useful article if you are interested in building your own machine tools.

Community helps make Paulding fair successful
Fort Wayne Journal Gazette – Fort Wayne,IN,USA
Members of the National Micro Mini Puller Association will bring their remote control trucks fitted with model airplane or car engines to the fairgrounds from

Snoopy’s doghouse was a hoot from the first time I saw it and it makes me laugh every time I watch the video.  If you haven’t seen it yet then take a look at where you can see the doghouse fly ~ and the flying lawnmowers as well!

From the press coverage it looks like the guys at are taking it out for an airing at the show. This Weekend, Look to the Sky
Hollister Free Lance – Hollister,CA,USA
to see Snoopy’s doghouse take on the Red Baron among many other fantastic aeronautical feats at this weekend’s Santa Clara County Model Aircraft Skypark airshow

This looks like an interesting way of exploring the way into full time aviation.

For those in the Farmington area..
Gallup Independent – Gallup,NM,USA
simulators. Students will also build a model aircraft to better understand aerodynamics. The camp fee is $47 and enrollment is limited.

And some consolation for those of you who can never bring yourselves to throw out the old stuff…

Toy auction for big kids
TVNZ – New Zealand
And untouched is best. A ten shilling kitset model airplane which lay unopened in the garage for 50 years could bring anything from $50 to $300.

Party on Canada Day
British Columbia North Island Gazette – Woss,British Columbia,Canada
In Port McNeill festivities begin at 10 am at the Port McNeill Airport with a kite jamboree and radio-controlled model airplane demonstrations with
Dundalk Eagle – Dundalk,MD,USA
The park gazebo will play host to model airplane and railroad displays, and Mills said the pig races “are one of the most popular attractions at the fair.”.

From the Engadget blog – this looks like a useful bit of information for those interested in building their own machine tools.

How-To: Build your own CNC machine (Part 1)
engadget – Santa Monica,CA,USA
motor. You can get suitable collars from a model airplane store (The hardware store had some, but they were overpriced). Alternatively

Here’s news of a lucky man who has managed to convert his enthusiasm for model airplanes into a career with UAV’s – the ultimate big boy’s toy!

Georgian teaches pilots who never leave ground
TMCnet (press release) – USA
controls. The laconic Evans says he teaches in much the same way he learned to fly as a fledgling member of a local model airplane club.

Fireworks, music top Fourth of July celebrations
Victoria Advocate – Victoria,TX,USA
Activities include Bob Essell Airshow, featuring a father-daughter wingwalker team, games, rides, food and craft booths, model airplane show and firework

Man gets lost in cornfield I carried this story on my blog at the time.  It’s always worth weighing up the pros and cons of venturing off the beaten track.
Pioneer Press – St. Paul,MN,USA
Hudson, Wis., man sparked a three-hour search Wednesday morning when he got lost in a Lake Elmo cornfield while looking for his radio-controlled model airplane

And a final maritme version.  Here’s another long time modeller who found another solution to the noise problem of gas engines.

The admiral of Lilliput
Providence Journal – Providence,RI,USA
yachts. Twenty-five years ago, he turned to constructing and racing model yachts. “Most all of us were model airplane guys. But

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This is a great time of year for modellers. The weather is glorious, well, just for the moment, and there are shows and open days all over the place practically every weekend.

So I’m not going to keep you from your flying fun any longer. Happy flying till next time.


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