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We Need a Flite School

#1
Flite Test has opened up a new way of flying: cheap, easy, do-it-anywhere fun. It’s what brought me into the hobby. The only problem is I lose planes to crashes and trees way too often. Which leads me to another problem. There’s nowhere to learn how to fly “Flite Test Style”.
The usual answer to “how do I learn how to fly” is to contact a local club. Which I did. But the members I met don’t live in a Flite Test world. Electric is kids stuff, and foam board a joke.

What we need is a dedicated school for our kind of flying. Come on you guys at Flite Test, open up a flying school now!
 
#2
I've been learning at a local club. A bit of what you describe, glow powered trainers, etc. but there are a lot of electric flyers and even one guy who is FT all the way. Maybe you just haven't met the right people there yet.

If they will teach you to fly on wet fuel planes, why not? You can still build your own FT plane and fly it once you get a little more stick time.
 

Javiester

Well-known member
#3
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alan0043

Active member
#4
Flite Test has opened up a new way of flying: cheap, easy, do-it-anywhere fun. It’s what brought me into the hobby. The only problem is I lose planes to crashes and trees way too often. Which leads me to another problem. There’s nowhere to learn how to fly “Flite Test Style”.
The usual answer to “how do I learn how to fly” is to contact a local club. Which I did. But the members I met don’t live in a Flite Test world. Electric is kids stuff, and foam board a joke.

What we need is a dedicated school for our kind of flying. Come on you guys at Flite Test, open up a flying school now!
Hi beacon,,

I don't know where you live. But on Thursday nights at Edgewater Air Park ( the home of Flite Test ) you can learn to fly. You don't even need an airplane to learn on. Josh brings a simple scout to learn on. The other guys down there are a great bunch. I really enjoy going to the air park to fly. Thursday nights are design for first time fliers. If you can make it to Edgewater you would see are good group of people.

Al
 
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sundown57

Well-known member
#5
I was like you, a lot of accident
My solution was to look for a super slow plane
look for The Fish V2 which is the one that helped me
or this one from fellow Sundown57
https://forum.flitetest.com/index.php?resources/slow-flyer-for-small-area.77/
in a short time I went to the TT and kept improving
espo high on the radio and keep rates low
try to go out on days without wind
I had the same LONG learning curve. I crashed a LOT of planes and never got any stick time all. Then I built that under camber wing slow flying plane. and that made all the difference for me. I went from 15-second flights to dead batteries. even now I'm practicing 4 channel but I still throw a slow plane up just to relax and enjoy flying.
 

The Hangar

Well-known member
#6
I had the same LONG learning curve. I crashed a LOT of planes and never got any stick time all. Then I built that under camber wing slow flying plane. and that made all the difference for me. I went from 15-second flights to dead batteries. even now I'm practicing 4 channel but I still throw a slow plane up just to relax and enjoy flying.
Same here. Crashed the simple cub a ton intill I buddy boxed on somebody’s radian glider. Then I built the old speedster and that was the plane for me!
 
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#8
Hi beacon,,

I don't know where you live. But on Thursday nights at Edgewater Air Park ( the home of Flite Test ) you can learn to fly. You don't even need an airplane to learn on. Josh brings a simple scout to learn on. The other guys down there are a great bunch. I really enjoy going to the air park to fly. Thursday nights are design for first time fliers. If you can make it to Edgewater you would see are good group of people.

Al
I live in New York and willing to travel pretty much anywhere to get a full day or two with an instructor-- hopefully with the Flite Test crew. Any ideas?
 

alan0043

Active member
#9
I live in New York and willing to travel pretty much anywhere to get a full day or two with an instructor-- hopefully with the Flite Test crew. Any ideas?
Hi beacon,

I wish I had an idea for you. I thought I heard Josh talking about camping at Edgewater. But I don't know if they have that part ready yet. You can always bring your golf clubs. The course is still open. I think it would be best to get a hold of Josh himself. And ask him your questions. I don't want to give you any bad info. It is always best to hear it from Josh. I don't know how to get a hold of Josh. Maybe Facebook. I don't do Facebook myself. Maybe someone else can make a comment to help.

Wish you the best,
Al
 

FDS

Well-known member
#10
There will be people in flying clubs who can help you. Although some may only contain big gasser warbird Pilots, there will be ones with electric flyers and even foamboard flyers in them. Flying is flying, anything you learn on a trainer at a club will translate into better FT flying . For the cost of travelling to Ohio you could pay a years AMA membership and club dues, plus good clubs have instructors and even kit for new pilots to use.
If you get met with negativity, don’t go back to that club!
There’s a list here of New York State clubs, or check out the AMA website.
 

SlingShot

Maneuvering With Purpose
#11
I live in New York and willing to travel pretty much anywhere to get a full day or two with an instructor-- hopefully with the Flite Test crew. Any ideas?
Just find the right club in your area. There's no way you are going to even want "a full day or two with an instructor..." An hour per day is about all you can use. You need time to assimilate and think about what you have learned. Are you using a simulator? They are great.
 

tamuct01

Active member
#12
Finding the right club is important, but I recommend purchasing one of the simulator options. I know Phoenix is no longer supported, but it gave me tons of stick time on any number of aircraft. You do have to treat it as practice and not a video game in order to improve. Real Flight is still being developed and I know there are a number of inexpensive to free options out there. Get practicing! :-D
 

Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#13
Sadly learning to fly RC model aircraft is often a matter of you having to teach yourself. In the days before "Buddy Boxing" it was effectively the only method available. Now even with the use of the buddy box system there are still many people who are forced to teach themselves to fly.

Joining a club to avail yourself of an instructor is now becoming a chargeable feature especially with the number of Drone schools starting to pop up for those wanting to get into professional drone services. The only real benefit of being taught by someone else or through your local club is that you will also be taught the rules and laws surrounding our hobby currently. Observe your would be instructors flying abilities before committing to becoming a student as the flying skills can vary greatly and in an emergency recovery some instructors have little knowledge or hand skills. Crashes by the instructor will happen but a lot more with some Vs others!

Some instructors will only teach on a particular brand of radio and on your plane, and some will not even help you with the preflight or basic setup! Getting a good instructor can be akin to winning the lottery!

At a local club you will need not only an instructor but also a mentor or two. Mentors spend the time advising you and teaching you the mechanics of building, flying, repairing, and maintenance or your plane and radio equipment. A good group of mentors can save you more money than even a good flying instructor. If you find a mentor who also instructs then they are like gold!

You should also try to supplement your formal instruction sessions with a few flights on your own as they can teach you a lot that some instructors will protect you from. Lessons like what to do to recover your plane when you mess up or panic, (this is where instructors normally take control). This is why I also provide a few FB planes to students so they can test their own skills for little cost.

Final thing to remember and it is the most vital thing to know if you are going to learn to fly and that is simply NEVER give up! Some learn to fly easily and some take a lot of training but everyone who wants to learn to fly enough eventually does!

Which ever route your end up going down just remember one thing!

Have fun!
 

The Hangar

Well-known member
#14
Sadly learning to fly RC model aircraft is often a matter of you having to teach yourself. In the days before "Buddy Boxing" it was effectively the only method available. Now even with the use of the buddy box system there are still many people who are forced to teach themselves to fly.

Joining a club to avail yourself of an instructor is now becoming a chargeable feature especially with the number of Drone schools starting to pop up for those wanting to get into professional drone services. The only real benefit of being taught by someone else or through your local club is that you will also be taught the rules and laws surrounding our hobby currently. Observe your would be instructors flying abilities before committing to becoming a student as the flying skills can vary greatly and in an emergency recovery some instructors have little knowledge or hand skills. Crashes by the instructor will happen but a lot more with some Vs others!

Some instructors will only teach on a particular brand of radio and on your plane, and some will not even help you with the preflight or basic setup! Getting a good instructor can be akin to winning the lottery!

At a local club you will need not only an instructor but also a mentor or two. Mentors spend the time advising you and teaching you the mechanics of building, flying, repairing, and maintenance or your plane and radio equipment. A good group of mentors can save you more money than even a good flying instructor. If you find a mentor who also instructs then they are like gold!

You should also try to supplement your formal instruction sessions with a few flights on your own as they can teach you a lot that some instructors will protect you from. Lessons like what to do to recover your plane when you mess up or panic, (this is where instructors normally take control). This is why I also provide a few FB planes to students so they can test their own skills for little cost.

Final thing to remember and it is the most vital thing to know if you are going to learn to fly and that is simply NEVER give up! Some learn to fly easily and some take a lot of training but everyone who wants to learn to fly enough eventually does!

Which ever route your end up going down just remember one thing!

Have fun!
I crashed my ft Cubs a ton (never in the air for over 30 seconds) until a friend offered to buddy bow on is eflite radian with me. After that 1 training session, I built the old speedster and was able to fly it pretty well. There were definitly a lot of crashes, but I was actually in control of the plane and learned from there. Then I got the scout and from there on, I’ve lost track😂. I’m not part of a club, but every once in a while, I’ll fly with some friends, which is a lot of fun. For there most part though I fly by myself. YouTube, especially flitetest has been my instructor and mentor, and now I feel pretty much I know everything, but in the back of my head I know that’s not true! I get a lot if help from this forum, and I’m learning new stuff all he time!
 

Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#15
I crashed my ft Cubs a ton (never in the air for over 30 seconds) until a friend offered to buddy bow on is eflite radian with me. After that 1 training session, I built the old speedster and was able to fly it pretty well. There were definitly a lot of crashes, but I was actually in control of the plane and learned from there. Then I got the scout and from there on, I’ve lost track😂. I’m not part of a club, but every once in a while, I’ll fly with some friends, which is a lot of fun. For there most part though I fly by myself. YouTube, especially flitetest has been my instructor and mentor, and now I feel pretty much I know everything, but in the back of my head I know that’s not true! I get a lot if help from this forum, and I’m learning new stuff all he time!
When you acquire knowledge you are best repaying the Mentors you have met during your journey by paying forward to the up and coming generation by mentoring them as well. Never stop learning and developing your skills as that makes you a better mentor and actually improves your own experience.

Sadly the role of mentors is often dismissed and not understood very well but they are vital to the passing on of knowledge to future generations. At a club level it is the mentors that are often called on to provide advice as to what planes are good performers and which to avoid. Those that ignore the mentors normally learn quickly that most advice from mentors is based upon experience and fact!

So find a good instructor, (that is important), and a good mentor or two, (that is vital), and you will be flying in the shortest time possible. Mind you the best mentor to get is the one who can observe your flying and to be able to inspect your planes etc. Actually if your local club has no mentors find another club, (at least until you have learned to fly and maintain your planes by yourself).

Have fun!
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#16
I agree with those who say clubs are a big roll of the dice, that's part of why I've put off checking out any local clubs. There are a lot of clubs that flat out think foamies are for scrubs, and/or won't let you fly anything random and home designed at their field. These are those sort of good-ol'-boy networks that are just echo chambers for the same tired opinions, and will usually have "recommended" or even mandatory planes that you have to purchase and fly to be one of the crowd, and not fly anything they don't recommend. Others are more laid back and open minded. Some clubs might micro-manage and nit-pick you way too much, from everything to pre-flight to launch to landing, while others will simply leave you to your own devices and not teach you much.

What you can do right from your desktop or mobile device, is to watch videos, read guides, talk to people on forums like this, and challenge yourself to learn to fly better and better. Share your vids here and you'll have multiple mentors who can assist you, and there will be people to recommend how you can challenge yourself next and try something new, or point out something you can improve or some way you can expand. Crashes are also less painful with quicker, easier planes. I'm working on a couple designs that are extremely quick and easy to build, repair, and replace from one sheet of foam and a basic electronics setup such as an FT power pack. Make 'em work first, make 'em pretty later!
 
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Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#17
Those who avoid clubs because of the FEAR that the club may be stodgy or full of rules and regulations are actually harming only themselves! Honestly their development can even be delayed or stunted! The only way to make the hobby accessible to all is to get out their and spread the message to all.

My local club, (which claimed to be friendly and open), was not so friendly and resisted anything new or different, (They knew nothing of FT and did not want FB planes or anything similar at their club including any radio that was not Spektrum). Well it was a battle over a couple of years but the club is now actually friendly and accepting. Most of the club members have a FB plane of their own and some club members actually have made requests for special builds for their use.

In addition no one cares much about what radio you use as long as it is reasonably fit for purpose. Beginners are actually guided along the path and can start learning without expending a single cent, (here is Aus that is far less than in the US:rolleyes:). We even have a clause in our rules that assigns responsibility for a crash to the instructor when buddy boxed so that beginners are covered by the instructors insurance until they decide if they wish to fully commit by becoming club members and investing in their own equipment and insurance! Yes, since joining the club I have become a mentor, instructor and committee member within the club. Actually I have managed to spread the FB message far further thn just my local club and now I am running to other clubs and persons who are flying FB birds, (a lot of my making)!

A club is made up by its membership and so are its internal rules and policies! If the local clubs are not right for you in your area you have a simple choice. Do nothing and they will always remain unsuitable for you OR you can join the club and not only learn from the club but also teach others of alternate ways to do things, change the club nature from within, and have a role in growing the club membership! Just a note of warning though, do not join a club and start telling the membership that they are wrong or doing things wrong because you will not ever be in a position where what you say will be accepted! Listen, learn, do, teach!

Join a club regardless or your opinion of them simply because together we have a voice whereas alone no one listens!

Have fun!
 

The Hangar

Well-known member
#18
Those who avoid clubs because of the FEAR that the club may be stodgy or full of rules and regulations are actually harming only themselves! Honestly their development can even be delayed or stunted! The only way to make the hobby accessible to all is to get out their and spread the message to all.

My local club, (which claimed to be friendly and open), was not so friendly and resisted anything new or different, (They knew nothing of FT and did not want FB planes or anything similar at their club including any radio that was not Spektrum). Well it was a battle over a couple of years but the club is now actually friendly and accepting. Most of the club members have a FB plane of their own and some club members actually have made requests for special builds for their use.

In addition no one cares much about what radio you use as long as it is reasonably fit for purpose. Beginners are actually guided along the path and can start learning without expending a single cent, (here is Aus that is far less than in the US:rolleyes:). We even have a clause in our rules that assigns responsibility for a crash to the instructor when buddy boxed so that beginners are covered by the instructors insurance until they decide if they wish to fully commit by becoming club members and investing in their own equipment and insurance! Yes, since joining the club I have become a mentor, instructor and committee member within the club. Actually I have managed to spread the FB message far further thn just my local club and now I am running to other clubs and persons who are flying FB birds, (a lot of my making)!

A club is made up by its membership and so are its internal rules and policies! If the local clubs are not right for you in your area you have a simple choice. Do nothing and they will always remain unsuitable for you OR you can join the club and not only learn from the club but also teach others of alternate ways to do things, change the club nature from within, and have a role in growing the club membership! Just a note of warning though, do not join a club and start telling the membership that they are wrong or doing things wrong because you will not ever be in a position where what you say will be accepted! Listen, learn, do, teach!

Join a club regardless or your opinion of them simply because together we have a voice whereas alone no one listens!

Have fun!
Great points! Telling others they are wrong is NEVER the way to go around things for sure! You always have to put yourself in their shoes and try to feel why they feel the way they do and then when they see the capabilities fb has these days, they won’t help being amazed!
 

Vimana89

Well-known member
#19
Those who avoid clubs because of the FEAR that the club may be stodgy or full of rules and regulations are actually harming only themselves! Honestly their development can even be delayed or stunted! The only way to make the hobby accessible to all is to get out their and spread the message to all.

My local club, (which claimed to be friendly and open), was not so friendly and resisted anything new or different, (They knew nothing of FT and did not want FB planes or anything similar at their club including any radio that was not Spektrum). Well it was a battle over a couple of years but the club is now actually friendly and accepting. Most of the club members have a FB plane of their own and some club members actually have made requests for special builds for their use.

In addition no one cares much about what radio you use as long as it is reasonably fit for purpose. Beginners are actually guided along the path and can start learning without expending a single cent, (here is Aus that is far less than in the US:rolleyes:). We even have a clause in our rules that assigns responsibility for a crash to the instructor when buddy boxed so that beginners are covered by the instructors insurance until they decide if they wish to fully commit by becoming club members and investing in their own equipment and insurance! Yes, since joining the club I have become a mentor, instructor and committee member within the club. Actually I have managed to spread the FB message far further thn just my local club and now I am running to other clubs and persons who are flying FB birds, (a lot of my making)!

A club is made up by its membership and so are its internal rules and policies! If the local clubs are not right for you in your area you have a simple choice. Do nothing and they will always remain unsuitable for you OR you can join the club and not only learn from the club but also teach others of alternate ways to do things, change the club nature from within, and have a role in growing the club membership! Just a note of warning though, do not join a club and start telling the membership that they are wrong or doing things wrong because you will not ever be in a position where what you say will be accepted! Listen, learn, do, teach!

Join a club regardless or your opinion of them simply because together we have a voice whereas alone no one listens!

Have fun!
Those are actually all very good points and a good outlook. I've probably just read too much into others having less than stellar experiences with clubs, and found it to reinforce some of my own biases. I honestly would have been more tempted to hit up the local club sooner and give it a shot if it weren't for so many purely logistical reasons such as the drive and it usually getting windy here early afternoon the latest almost every day. I'd have to come in before noon on a nice day or something. It would suck to get down there and five minutes into flying and the wind just gets crazy. I would need to either pick the right day, or learn to build a plane that's pretty wind resistant and fly in wind. All those things are probably pretty feasible in the near future. Maybe I'll give it a shot some time.
 
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Hai-Lee

Old and Bold RC PILOT
#20
Those are actually all very good points and a good outlook. I've probably just read too much into others having less than stellar experiences with clubs, and found it to reinforce some of my own biases. I honestly would have been more tempted to hit up the local club sooner and give it a shot if it weren't for so many purely logistical reasons such as the drive and it usually getting windy here early afternoon the latest almost every day. I'd have to come in before noon on a nice day or something. It would suck to get down there and five minutes into flying and the wind just gets crazy. I would need to either pick the right day, or learn to build a plane that's pretty wind resistant and fly in wind. All those things are probably pretty feasible in the near future. Maybe I'll give it a shot some time.
Our local club has 2 fields now which we alternate between, (one is a sports ground which has seasonal fixtures). The local is 15 minutes away whereas the alternate is an hour away, (I ride a bicycle with a large trailer full of planes, tools, and parts). The alternate field means a number of hill climbs:rolleyes:. As for the wind we normally fly from dawn until the batteries are exhausted. Wind is lower at dawn here BUT I teach my students in all but the highest of winds so that they are able to fly when the weather is less than perfect. Actually a number of the oldies are amazed that my students prepare their planes and taxi out for their lesson when the oldies are too afraid to fly and are packing up to go home!

As for windy flying we do not fly RET models on windy days because they are to hampered by technical issues which are exacerbated by windy conditions. As you may be aware there were experiments done in the 1930s with the simple bomber idea of making bombers quicker and less complicated by making them RET only with massive dihedral. The idea was quickly abandoned when it was realized that they were only safe to use in the calmest of weather. Actually those club members with flying wings are normally the last to cease flying as the wind builds. Many times we have our KFM wing combat sessions near the end of the flying time when the wind is quite strong because no one else wants to fly anymore for the day.

If you want to tackle the wind and the "Learning aileron control" build yourself a series of wings, The arrow, Spear and even the KFM versions perform quite well as AET birds and can handle the wind better than most! Additionally if you want to fly on windy days do not build small and light because both will not handle wind very well!

As for your area if there is no local club get a few friends together and form one! I am sure you are not the only person interested in RC model aircraft in your area!

Have fun!