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Flite Test Store Experience -You Need to Know....

Maingear

Flugzeug Liebhaber
#1
I gladly paid $20 at a repographics shop for the boxcar plans to keep from having to tape tiles, then spent 4 evenings at 3 hours each, cutting it out. That's over $480 in my labor before I plug in the glue gun. I've built 2 Krakens, 4 FT Flyers, and 1 SS.

I ordered the Storch Speedbuild Kit (it arrived today) because the boxcar was just too much after 20 pieces.
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the pride in explaining that I made every cut, but from here on out, I'm going to order kits from the FT store. Eventually, I will keep spare kits in storage. If I have the need, the plane can be reassembled overnight without pulling an all-nighter.

I've ordered parts and sub assemblies from them in the past. Their products have been equal or better quality than mine, even after being shipped hundreds of miles. Contents are always immaculate. They have earned my business and will allow me to spend more quality time with my family.

Remember, your time is a finite resource and it spends just like money.

Thanks FT!

Justin
 
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earthsciteach

Moderator
Moderator
#2
That is an interesting way to look at it, Justin. $480 worth of time is immense for a foam board airplane!

The idea of "value" has to be considered, as well. For me, I enjoy building as much as flying and maybe even more. So, the time I spend building has the same value to me as the time I spend flying. But, that's me - no more valid than your perspective.

People just getting into the hobby will definitely benefit from the speed build kits. Imagine the idea of buying a kit of an extremely good flying airplane for $30 20 or 30 years ago. That would have blown minds! Add to that, you can crash and rebuild this plane for no more than $3-4 for the more complicated models! Woah! Now, here's where it gets really crazy… The company that produces these simple-to-build, cheap as dirt kits gives the plans away for free! Heads just exploded.

We are in an incredibly fortunate era in the history of model aviation. FT has brilliantly capitalized (both figuratively and monetarily) on this era, and by doing so, has opened the door to this awesome hobby to SO many who would otherwise not find the value in the time and expense required to become proficient.

So, I join Justin in saying, Thank you, FT!
 

TTMR

A leaf on the wind
#3
While I didn't order it online I'm glad that I picked up a couple speed builds at FF for my first builds. Cheap and easy way to learn how to work with the foam board!

Oh and my spit lives in my car, I don't take it out except to fly or repair!
 

JohnRambozo

Posted a thousand or more times
#5
Totally agree. Having done diy first and than doing a speed kit, I love the speed kits.
I did it the other way around. I did a speed build Spitfire to get a feel for the materials and the building process then found I actually enjoyed the building - even the repairs and enhancements as much as flying. So for my second plane I followed nerdnic's Bucker Bu. I'm very happy with how it came out and don't feel any of my time was wasted. Now I'm going to waste more time trying to design and build my own idea.

If I wasn't 'wasting' my time building planes, it would surely go to something less rewarding. I certainly don't get paid to play video games. :)

And to reitterate: Thank you Flite Test for making the hobby accessible.
 
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#6
I love speed build kits, I built my Versa Wing with one but, added the blunt nose addition scratch build style. I think it depends on the environment you are in for speed build vs. scratch build. If you are on a budget then it may be worth it to save yourself $20 or more after shipping and spend the nights, or if you are building with a family member or friend it may be fun to spend the extra time together. Personally I love the speed build kits as they are simple to put together and I don't have to worry about the cutting as much.
 

SP0NZ

FT CAD Gremlin
Mentor
#7
We are in an incredibly fortunate era in the history of model aviation. FT has brilliantly capitalized (both figuratively and monetarily) on this era, and by doing so, has opened the door to this awesome hobby to SO many who would otherwise not find the value in the time and expense required to become proficient.

So, I join Justin in saying, Thank you, FT!
Well put earthsciteach!

I wouldn't have gotten into the hobby had it not been for Flite Test. They took all the fear out of crashing for me to "try" it. Once I got that first plane built (from scratch) and in the air, I was hooked.

Thanks Flite Test!
 
#9
Well put earthsciteach!

I wouldn't have gotten into the hobby had it not been for Flite Test. They took all the fear out of crashing for me to "try" it. Once I got that first plane built (from scratch) and in the air, I was hooked.

Thanks Flite Test!
I so much agree! Same case here, I was hesitating about putting some money for the electronics a few months before discovering FT looking at some blogs ... as soon as one of the videos crossed through my Youtube recommended area I started watching all of them, learning and also laughing so hard with their crashes, crazy ideas, etc

And here I am, with my kind-of-FT Flyer in the trunk everyday to fly before getting to the office (and after, when the battery allows me) -> [any chance to charge a 3S from the USB xD?]

Thank you FT and the people at the forums, I've learned a lot!!
 
#10
It really is a matter of tastes. Want to fly with minimal time available for building then the speed kits are a great way to go and easy to repair. Me I'm never happy unless I have a large variety of choices and the low cost of the builds are great for me. I've lined up a P-51 and will be doing at least one other. Total cost outside of electronics which I recycle endlessly is 5-10$ per plane and with materials cost so low I can experiment and try things out. For me the speed kits are already half the price of buying an electric foamy or a small balsa ARF. So I prefer to build from plans. I hope to see Flite Test eventually offer affordable motor combos and such for their planes similar to what Grayson Hobby has and allot of their hardware is really nice. Plan to eventually get some of their control horns at the least and some of the power pods as well. Laser cut wood is always better than homemade parts in that case.
 

willsonman

Builder Extraordinare
Mentor
#11
I agree with much that has been noted here. I got the speed build for the storch as making lost of cuts on that build did not appeal to me. There is a lot to be said for FT introducing many to the hobby. I dont think I can add anymore than what is stated here and on other threads. I'll play devil's advocate here... What FT does not address is sustained interest in the hobby. The planes are good but I think there comes a limit to where a builder gets to a set of balsa plans and they just scratch their heads. This is where their community comes in. More folks getting on the FT wagon need to come here and I think this community is really where FT shines. Many great and helpful people will to push a less-experienced pilot or builder to the next level, in a kind and friendly atmosphere.
 

SnowRocker88

Amateur pilot and builder
#12
My girlfriend has the same mindset as the OP and I do not. I'm a builder. I love to design and create and build. I've been designing my own planes, converting them to plans, printing them out, cutting them out and then gluing them together. It's SOO much fun. I have yet to even fly a single plane (newbie and have been putting together my equipment). Even if I didn't get a chance to fly them at all...SO worth it to me. I LOVE building and being able to say that I did it by myself.

Not to say there's anything wrong with the opposing mindset but I will say that building can be a blast as well.
 
#13
I think that I will use the speed builds to make my own patterns on 20"x30" paper on a roll, rather than tile and tape many sheets of paper from the printer. That seems to be the easiest way to rebuild, remake and repair after crashes. I could also just lay the speed build pattern on a 20x30 foam board and cut multiple patterns, cause I know that I'm gonna crash. I am new to the hobby!
 
#14
i would love to experience a speed build kit. but unfortunately the price of postage almost doubles the price of the kit.

But to value ones time in building, i can see that. But when i build, i try to do as much of it in the front room, as that way i am still able to spend time with the family, and build. best of both worlds :) . i find there is nothing better than having a successful maiden, of something you have spent hours constructing from nothing but flat sheets of foamboard and hotglue. I get as much satisfaction flying my versa or storch, as i do flying my dynam spitfire. And that cost me about £150.

I suppose it is all about personal preference, The free plans are there for those whom enjoy scratch building, and the speed builds are there for those that would like to just build :)
 
#15
I gladly paid $20 at a repographics shop for the boxcar plans to keep from having to tape tiles, then spent 4 evenings at 3 hours each, cutting it out. That's over $480 in my labor before I plug in the glue gun. I've built 2 Krakens, 4 FT Flyers, and 1 SS.

I ordered the Storch Speedbuild Kit (it arrived today) because the boxcar was just too much after 20 pieces.
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the pride in explaining that I made every cut, but from here on out, I'm going to order kits from the FT store. Eventually, I will keep spare kits in storage. If I have the need, the plane can be reassembled overnight without pulling an all-nighter.

I've ordered parts and sub assemblies from them in the past. Their products have been equal or better quality than mine, even after being shipped hundreds of miles. Contents are always immaculate. They have earned my business and will allow me to spend more quality time with my family.

Remember, your time is a finite resource and it spends just like money.

Thanks FT!

Justin
I agree 100%, same reason the people in their Prius doing 45mph on the highway to get 3mpg better drive me nuts.
I don't think the couple dollars they are saving by driving that slow can justify the loss of time. Now some people may think their time isn't worth much, but you cannot make more time. We only live once. We can always earn more money.

I choose to spend what little free time I have doing something I like, like building and flying planes. :)
 
#16
Build Patterns based on the FT Tiled Plans and Speed Build alignment

I plan on using the tiled print out of the Nutball, FT Flyer and Delta and very carefully aligning them with the Speed Build Kits that I ordered. The FT Guys did say that it was alright to make a pattern and reuse it over and over. Hope I don't crash too often, but it will only cost me a new sheet of DT foam board.
 

mrwzrd59

Old Guy Geek
#17
The value of your time...

I would say you're looking at it wrong unless you have ways of making money in your spare time. I can make $800.00 per weekend with cad designs for my personal customers but I also have to balance that with my desire for some "me time". I don't waste my time with placing value on that because not much will stop me from doing as I please anyway. I chalk up the time I spend building and planning to worthwhile distractions and enjoy every minute of it. If you're smart, money comes easy.....If your obsessed with making it, you lose yourself to somebody else's distractions. I work for a billion dollar company and am bored to death during the week so I simply must have some interesting and rewarding hobbies to take the edge off the nonsense I see at the office. Building and designing stuff for myself fills the void. I would call it priceless to me because of keeping my sanity!
 
#18
I plan on using the tiled print out of the Nutball, FT Flyer and Delta
wont those fit on a single sheet of paper....... i mean they are so small :)

but, i have to say, if it were not for the level of detail FT crew puts into these builds, i prob would not be as hooked on them.

It is not just the ability to buy their speed build kits, or the power packs, but it is the incredibly high detailed building instructions they provide.

as long as you follow their videos, and abide by their tips, you can build any of their planes with ease, and have something that flies well.

just wish i actually had the right power equipment and a few new servos :( mine are getting tired, and/or completely wrong, but testiment to these planes, my storch and versa still fly ok. Apart from smoking an esc, and lack of power because the plane calls for a high torque motor, an im running a 2000kv fun fighter....
 
#20
speed build vs printed tiled plans

The FT tiled plans that I printed are a good reference, but do not line up exactly with the speed build kit parts that I ordered. So, I am using the speed build pieces as my pattern. All of the FT Flyer speed build pieces fit on a single sheet of DT foamboard. I have plenty of small pieces to manage the hot glue.

I am not worried about any time factor for the builds. I enjoy the process. It is a hobby for my free time-slow and easy.