greetings and salutations!

Marzipan

Well-known member
I'm 42 and I've joined up to learn more about beginner level RC airplaine(s) and drone(s) or multirotors as you call them. multirotors seems to be a very English term...is there a difference between drones and multirotors?

I have zero experience with anything RC as I never has one growing up...just dreamed and drooled at the thought.

so here I am, wanting to learn so my 7 year old grandson and myself can have a blast together!

we're up in northern British Canuckistan in a little city called Prince Rupert where there appears to be no presence of any sort of RC community. :(

I also hope to get into beginner rocketry as well. I know planes, drones and rockets will absolutely blow my grandson's mind! :D

I will admit I'm overwhelmed by all the options, bits and pieces for the flite test aircraft and drones, so if anyone can point me to a list of everything needed to get off the ground (if such a list exists), I would be very appreciative!!!1111oneoneon1!!

I'm excited to learn!
 

JasonK

Participation Award Recipient
if you want to get started in planes (also called fixed wing), I have a link to a 'getting started as cheap as possible' in my signature.
If you want to get started with multirotors, I would suggest starting with a simulator on a computer or with a 'whoop' class quad.

If you want to get into multirotors, the bind and fly stuff tends to be Flysky or D8 protocol while Bind and fly stuff for fixed wing tends to be spektrum (DSMX), if you want to be able to pick up just about anything and fly it, you want to get an Open TX radio with a 4 in 1 multi-protocal module. However some people find them harder to setup then other radio types.

So, what type of budget do you had and what do you want to fly most? Having flown both fixed wing and multi-rotor, I found the fixed wing easier to get the hang of flying then multi-rotors (unless you use one of the 'it flies for you' multirotor 'toys').
 

Flyingshark

Master member
Welcome to the forums! I'd recommend building the Tiny Trainer as your first plane, if you want to build your first plane. If you don't, there are lots of premade Ready-To-Fly and Bind-'N-Fly models out there that you can get.

To try to answer your terminology question, a "drone" is one way to refer to a "multirotor," but calling something a "multirotor" is more technically correct, and more specific.
 

Marzipan

Well-known member
howdy Jason! I'm most interested in fixed wing and I have no budget as I don't know what is realistic to spend, but I am hoping we can get off the ground for a couple hundred?

the modularity of FT platform has won me over, as I don't doubt my grandson will have a blast creating his own designs to fly, in addition to the one's we can buy or download designs for.
 

FlamingRCAirplanes

Elite member
To try to answer your terminology question, a "drone" is one way to refer to a "multirotor," but calling something a "multirotor" is more technically correct, and more specific.
A drone is a multirotor that can fly itself via GPS or other source. A quadcopter/multirotor is something that has no form of self flight. It can only be controlled by the pilot.
 

JasonK

Participation Award Recipient
howdy Jason! I'm most interested in fixed wing and I have no budget as I don't know what is realistic to spend, but I am hoping we can get off the ground for a couple hundred?

the modularity of FT platform has won me over, as I don't doubt my grandson will have a blast creating his own designs to fly, in addition to the one's we can buy or download designs for.

if your goal is fixed wing in a few hundred, then take a look at the link in my signature. My son used basically that exact set of equipment to learn on.
 

Flyingshark

Master member
for your beginner recommendations, the Tiny Trainer is one of the two at the top of my list. the other is the EZ3 First Flyers.

I see the Tiny Trainer value pack:
https://store.flitetest.com/ft-tiny-trainer-value-bundle/

EZ3 First Flyers:
https://store.flitetest.com/ft-ez3-first-flyers-wr-382mm/

The TTVP says the only extra needed is the battery and transmitter...while the EZ3FF doesn't say anything about what else is needed to complete them.
I recommend you get the TT. It's got more potential for mods in the future, and it has real control surfaces, which many of the EZ pack planes don't have. It also has two interchangeable wings, and you can use the electronics on a wider array of planes if/when you crash it past the point of repairability.
 

Marzipan

Well-known member
if your goal is fixed wing in a few hundred, then take a look at the link in my signature. My son used basically that exact set of equipment to learn on.

yep, i saw that...some of the links need to be updated though as they are dead ends now. ;)

the TT is probably perfect for me while the EZ3FF is just right for my grandson, which makes me think that is probably the best thing to start with? I just need to know what 'extras' I need to get them off the ground. the TT would be something he'd get to grow into!

I should mention I did order FT's book.
 

Marzipan

Well-known member
I should mention that it seems FT's availability in Canada is sparse. I've found a couple of resellers via Google and Amazon Canada has literally nothing for them. after exchange I know our dollar sucks, but a number of the prices are ridiculously far out.

does FT have a list of partners north of the 49th?

I don't have any problem with ordering from FT directly...but do fear insane brokerage fees. or if you know of US hobby stores that ship into Canada, please feel free to recommend them to me.

many thanks!
 

FoamyDM

Building Fool-Flying Noob
Welcome! @Marzipan ! Matt here (46 myself)

INSTRUCTIONAL Vids
Here is the FT Youtube channel Link that Covers the Basics.

PODCAST
If you Listen to podcasts and have more time to listen than watch - you can tune into a number of Podcast:
I will shamelessly plug My Podcast the Aviation RC Noob Podcast.
but there others (RC roundtable, RC afterhours, RC lawn chaitr Pilots Podcast, and for the balsa end of the hobby I like the rc plane Lab Podcast

PLANES
I have personally found a VERY positive experience with the Old Fogey. It is slow, easy to see and fly and has a long battery life.
I also agree that the EX stuff is a good entry. and with all the variations/kits available, you can find something you each love to fly and they both comfortably fly in a local ball field (downside is they are small.)

Community and Chatting
You've already started this. ask away. @JasonK asked the right questions. Through the podcast Joe and I host a Build Night on our Discord Server. (link is good for 7 days)
we are hosting one in 2.5 weeks. drop by and Share thoughts and Ideas/ concerns.

PLANS
https://forum.flitetest.com/index.php?threads/sp0nz-plans-index.17136/

-FoamyDM
 

Mr_Stripes

Elite member
Hey there @Marzipan,
Welcome to the forum! A radio would be my first investment. It will be the thing that you can grow with if you get a solid one. One thing that hasn't been explained yet: Each transmitter company has its own protocol. FrSky has their own, FlySky has theirs, Futaba has theirs, and Spektrum has dsmx and dsm2. Multiprotocol radios have special modules that can run multiple different types of protocols. This means that if you get one of those you aren't stuck getting just spektrum receivers or just flysky receivers. The most common brands of this type of radios are Jumper and Radiomaster (I think one broke off of the other so their products look Very similar). Once you have decided on a radio I would recommend the RC DESK PILOT sim as it is free and very good.

I fixed the linked in that post and updated a few things, looks like a basic charger has got cheaper bringing down the total cost.
I really like my toolkitrc m6 charger, it is much nicer, has an interface and is only 10$ more than @JasonK 's recommended charger.

One last question for @Marzipan
How big of an area are you flying in? How many people will be in this area? This (to me anyways) is an important factor in what aircraft you want.
 

JasonK

Participation Award Recipient
I really like my toolkitrc m6 charger, it is much nicer, has an interface and is only 10$ more than @JasonK 's recommended charger.
I would recommend something a bit more expensive also, that is the 'as cheap as possible' option, I would want something with at least 2 ports and the ability to set charge rates and do storage.

it looks like that also needs a separate AC -> DC power supply to run it, is that correct? (more cost and complexity)
 

Marzipan

Well-known member
thanks for all the answers, thoughts and suggestions! I do see that the FT website has a trove of articles and videos to read and watch and absorb to learn about all of this. I do have a few more questions to ask though...but if they should be posted in a different forum since this is the hey, hi, how are ya meet and greet, let me know or mods feel free to split and move?

1) for the EZ3 First Flight pack...I'm assuming the other item(s) needed would be the 2 and / or 3 channel power packs? I would probably wan to buy a handful of extra batteries as well, which means I should find out what I need to charge a lot of batteries all at the same time?

2) for the Tiny Trainer value pack, it says I also need a transmitter and batteries with a suggestion of 2C and 3C batteries. the battery section of the store doesn't give an option to filter for 2C, only 3C and higher. regarding a transmitter, I like the idea of the Spektrum options as they can be used with the trainer software...but I should ask if there are any other transmitters that work with the training software out there?

edit - oh yes! I meant to ask what the expected flight times for these planes would be with 2C or 3C batteries, etc?
 

JasonK

Participation Award Recipient
just get the recommended 3s battery.

Expected flight time depends on how you fly, the prop and motor/etc.
For the Tiny Trainer using a 3s 650mAh, a-pack motor and a 6x3 prop, I set my flight timer to 5 minutes.


often when talking about batteries the C rating has to do with the max discharge rate [C rating * mAh = max current draw].
My answer was assuming you meant 3s not 3c [3c is insufficient for most RC uses]
 

Marzipan

Well-known member
just get the recommended 3s battery.
often when talking about batteries the C rating has to do with the max discharge rate [C rating * mAh = max current draw].
My answer was assuming you meant 3s not 3c [3c is insufficient for most RC uses]

hello Jason, yes, I meant to write an S not C in regards to the batteries. what does the S stand for? I probably made the mistake with putting a C as I was thinking '2 or 3 cell' batteries. can you use bigger 4s or 5s batteries or is that so much power that it would burn out the electric motors?

@anyone / everyone, any direction regarding the EZ3FF kits? I was hoping I'd get an answer so I wouldn't bug FT staff, but I can always submit a ticket asking what all is needed.
 

JasonK

Participation Award Recipient
hello Jason, yes, I meant to write an S not C in regards to the batteries. what does the S stand for? I probably made the mistake with putting a C as I was thinking '2 or 3 cell' batteries. can you use bigger 4s or 5s batteries or is that so much power that it would burn out the electric motors?

@anyone / everyone, any direction regarding the EZ3FF kits? I was hoping I'd get an answer so I wouldn't bug FT staff, but I can always submit a ticket asking what all is needed.

For the A-pack motor with the recommended prop size, a higher cell count would overheat/burn up your motor. I did some tests with my a-pack and found that [on the bench static] 3s with a 6x4.5 prop got the motor hotter then I was conformable with

3s means 3 cells in series.
 

Whit Armstrong

Elite member
hello Jason, yes, I meant to write an S not C in regards to the batteries. what does the S stand for? I probably made the mistake with putting a C as I was thinking '2 or 3 cell' batteries. can you use bigger 4s or 5s batteries or is that so much power that it would burn out the electric motors?

@anyone / everyone, any direction regarding the EZ3FF kits? I was hoping I'd get an answer so I wouldn't bug FT staff, but I can always submit a ticket asking what all is needed.

S stands for "Cell". It was a bit confusing for me at first, and seems backwards, but that's the way it is!
For the planes you'll be getting into at entry level, 4s or 5s batteries would be too fast and heavy, although they would be good for a 3rd or 4th plane.