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Noob looking for the next step up

Hi all,

As I said, I am a noob. I have a HZ Stratos that I've gotten quite comfortable with. I have a bit more progressing to do on it, i.e. flying w/o virtual instructor, stepping up the throws on the rudder and elevator, etc., but I can feel myself beginning to get bored with it and have started looking towards 4 channels with longing for ailerons and the more advanced maneuvers that accompany them. So here I am for the advice that all noobs seek when the time comes for the training wheels to get kicked off.

I have heard talk of the HZ Super Cub as a good trainer and then being good for the transition to 4 channel by adding ailerons. I have also heard that the PZ T-28 is a good 4 channel trainer. How about the Bix or the Bixler 2? I am open to any and all suggestions or ideas. Basically I want a good beginner 4 channel, that will also allow for some basic aerobatics when that time comes. I am looking for it to be BnF or PnP but also like the idea of the versatility of ARF as well.

Since the Stratos is my first and only plane thus far, my Tx is the goofy red video game controller that it comes with and can only be used with the Stratos. To remedy this I am looking towards the Turnigy 9x as it seems to be quite the bang for my buck with plenty of room to grow. Feel free to criticize my judgement on this and scold if need be.



All of the planes you mentioned are very good. Since you have some flying experience, the Super Cub may seem a bit unchallenging in its stock configuration. But, it is an AWESOME airplane upgraded to a 450 or 480 brushless motor with ailerons. I can't imagine ever getting bored with mine!

The Bixler is another fantastic and fun airplane. You can't go wrong with it. And the PZ T-28 is another solid performer with docile tendencies. I'll even throw in the PZ Corsair as a solid second plane. I think you would be happy with any of those. You should buy them all. :cool:
T-28 all the way!! It's an awesome second plane. You can turn the rates down and throw in some expo and it will fly like a trainer, and then you can crank up the rates and turn down the expo and it will really perform! After an FT Old Fogey and another plane I built from DT foam, the T-28 was next. I am really still a novice pilot, but the T-28 is a jack of all trades. I have 20+ flights on mine and haven't turned it into a broken pile of foam yet. earthsciteach is right, without modding the Cub, it's very docile. I have mine built with a 300+ watt outrunner, ailerons, and flaps. I also don't see myself getting bored with the Cub any time soon, but it required some mods to get it to that point. For out of the box bang for the buck the T-28 is hard to beat. Another one, that I have limited stick time on, is the Eflite Apprentice 15e. It's quite a bit bigger, but it's a real floater when you need it to be, but will move right along when you want. However, out of the three mentioned, the T-28 will take you the farthest as far as all out flight performance.

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Agreed. The cub would be great as a step up as far as working on different things. You can use it to get used to a taildragger before trying to fly something like a corsair. Tail draggers are an art all their own. You can add floats for next to nothing and that's a BLAST!! It's a really good plane that you can beat up and modify to your hearts content and it will come back asking for more. If you don't have a nice paved place to land you just can't beat cubs for flying in and out of bad places. Once you are ready for ailerons then you can add them cheap and it becomes a whole new plane. Go brushless and it's all new again. Go ailerons flaps brushless and floats and it's like walking on mars. Totally different and awesome.

The T-28 is an awesome plane. It's a bit more expensive out of the box but it flies like a dream....a very fast and aerobatic dream, but also a docile and tame dream. There's a good reason the military trained with them. They are very good planes and solid in the air yet they will perform very well when you decide you want it to.

The bixler series are good planes but he major downfall for me is no landing gear. It's not hard at all to belly land a plane and for me half the fun is taking off and landing. I like short landing competitions and things like that. The tricycle gear on the T-28 is much much easier to handle when taxiing and taking off and landing. The tail draggers are always harder, but that's just another cool thing to master.

The apprentice is cool too but won't be nearly as exciting as the T-28 but it's probably a much safer step up from your plane as it's a tamer flyer.


Old age member
If flying is the thing for you and not cutting pieces of foam and mounting servos and stuff .....
Try to find a RTF with a transmitter with at least 6 channels and some model memories.
The RTF shold come with everything needed as battery and charger to get you up in the air fast.

You can do some aerobatics with most planes as long as the motor is not to little for the plane, but with a smart transmitter you can program Dual Rates making the plane easy to fly as long as you are not comfortable with the faster responses you get with a "full throw".

Try to find a local hobby store and get some advice. Many hobby stores will help you swap a "one model" simple transmitter to a more suitable one that you kan live with a long time with plenty of planes and copters.

Parkzone is one of the brands where you can find spare parts "on the shelf" if glue is not enough to get you up after a "hard landing".


Senior Member
First, think about a transmitter, and how far you want to go with the hobby.

Think about something you won't outgrow soon like a 9X or a 9XR with Frsky modules and receivers.

If you get a RTF, you're locking yourself into that manufacturers system, with a kit or PNF, you can pick your own system.

Either the T-28 or Bixler would be great aircraft. The T28 is a snappy flyer, while the Bixler is a bit more sedate, can be used for soaring, and can be loaded with FPV gear.
Thanks for all the great advice! I like the idea of the progression of the cub, i.e. adding ailerons, then flaps and going brushless, but it also sounds like the T-28 will push me farther. This may end up as a coin toss!

WARNING! Newbie questions below!

So I feel really dumb for asking this but I haven't been able to find the answer, is any radio, say the 9x or 9xr, bind-able to any bnf plane or would it require a pnf and compatible receiver? Also, I see that HK sells the 9x with or without modules, I had not even heard the term until I starter looking into Transmitters, could somebody give me a brief overview of them and their function?

Thanks again!


Senior Member
The 9X or 9XR will accept modules that con be used with receivers from other manufacturers.

Frsky. Probably the best. Can be used with 2 way telemetry.



Orange, which is compatible with Spektrum DSM2.


Orange LRS, for a 433mhz system for long range.


There are others, but these are among the best


Propaganda machine
A module in a radio like the 9x is the actual transmission system. It takes signal derived from the inputs on the transmitter and encodes that information into a radio signal that the receiver can understand. Receivers can only understand/hear protocols or languages they understand. Each manufacturer uses a different protocol, but different modules can be swapped in and out to allow you to take advantage of the equipment available from different manufacturers. Like telemetry, or more sensitive receivers, or bind and fly planes.

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
, is any radio, say the 9x or 9xr, bind-able to any bnf plane

The Spektrum brand coined the term Bind N' Fly (BNF). All of their DSM2 and DSMX systems can work together once they are "bound". For example, I fly with a Spektrum DX8. I have 15 models both planes and helis and I can fly all of them with the same radio. Some are kit built where I had to put in a receiver, some are bind n fly where I simply had to bind the existing electronics to it. I also have a DX5 and a DX4 and 3 of 4 of the little radios that come with the beginner planes. Any of these transmitters can be bound to any of the models but they will only work the first 4 or 5 channels. When I install a receiver in a kit or pnp I have to bind that receiver to the transmitter in similar fashion to the way I bind the little ones.

If I buy a plane from one of my friends or anyone else that has the same DSM2 or DSMX I can just bind it as well.

If you have a Futaba Fasst system, the same process goes for them except they don't offer the small built in boards in micro planes so they don't have any true bind n fly planes. However, if you install a receiver and bind it, you can fly any model you please.

Airtronics, Turnigy, FrSky, Hitec etc. all have similar systems but you still have to bind within their brands. The exception is when you install a module, then you get to use your transmitter but use another type of transmission. You can put a Futaba Fasst or Spektrum DSM2 module into a Turnigy radio and bind to Futaba and Spektrum receivers.