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Pumpkin drop event

What is a good beginner RTF fixed wing kit?

Was wondering what you guys think are good beginner fixed wing planes that one could grow into. I would like to be able to purchase it as a RTF kit , because I am very new at this hobby. I also don't want to spend a whole lot. Is there anything under $100 that would fit my criteria? I have been doing some research and came up with these kits. Please tell me what you think and if there's a different kit you would prefer.

Cox Hobbies Sky Ranger EP RTF

Hobby Zone Duet RTF

Flyzone Micro Playmate RTF


Senior Member
Of the three, I would suggest the Sky Ranger. I don't like the body style of the Duet, and the dual engines seems like it's just asking for trouble. The Playmate has a similar body style to the Ranger, but has a little smaller wingspan. A smaller, lighter plane is going to be harder to fly in the wind. The Ranger also has a 2S battery instead of the Playmate's 1S, which will give more power and longer flight times.


More combat please...
I don't recommend the Playmate. I had two of them and returned them both. Not a durable piece of kit.
Not familiar with the other two planes.


Helicopter addict
I'd agree with joshuabardwell. The duet is really really light and will have some trouble with wind.

I really like your first post on this forum, you've done your research! Welcome and let us know which one you eventually choose (in the end it's your choice, not ours ;) ) and how the first flight goes!


old headcase
Wow. I've got the Duet and am constantly surprised by what it can take. There's only one control surface (elevator) and uses differential thrust for yaw.
I've honestly only flown it a few times, but as I hand it over to most anyone wanting to try flight, it has many hours and more crashes than I could count.

I hope to add another and two champs for the same purpose.

It handles more wind than I would have thought but it's a learn to fly design and wind + learning first flights isn't often the greatest idea.

Can't speak of the others.

Thank You guys for so much the input! I'm deciding between the Sky Ranger and the Duet. I'm looking for the plane to be able to be relatively fast for when I get better at the hobby. Like I want to be able to do those quick low passes. And to me it seems that it would be easier to do that with the Duet because of its wing shape. I'm a student at Embry Riddle in Prescott and am studying aeronautical engineering, so that is the reason why I only have under $100 to spend. They have a rc field here and I am super excited to take any plane there to learn.

Honestly, thanks again for the responses. If anyone knows which one could probably travel faster, I'd love to know. Thanks again for helping me get started in rc!

Ron B

Posted a thousand or more times
I have the duet and it will start you learning to fly. It is not fast and doesn't like wind above a very faint one. The twin motors are no problem and are set up on the aileron stick with the elevator and the differential thrust of them is what turns the plane. It will only do figure eights, circles, and loops and is not a fast plane. It doesn't need a big space to fly in and that is why I got one as I can take it out to the ball field and fly it for a quick morning flight before the winds kick up. It is easy to get out of trim and should be looked over before each launch. If broken use only foam safe CA not just regular CA as it will eat the foam. My tail broke clean into and Ca helped eat a hole in it so I just used a piece of reinforced packing tape and double layered it and the tail stay's put quite well.
I know funds are tight but I would spend the $180 on the Delta Ray by hobby zone and it can fly slow or it can fly somewhat fast and you can grow into it to do a lot of arobatics, it also has a nice glide to it and will handle more wind but does need a bigger place to fly.
Welcome to the forum and good luck.


Posted a thousand or more times
I learned on the Duet. You shouldn't be flying in wind when you are learning anyway. The Duet is tough and the motors are protected from nose first crashes. I destroyed my Champ and never got a good flight out of it, the Duet I had flying from the first toss.

Once you get good at it, it can be flown in some wind with care but make sure you land on tall grass.
I found another plane while looking on hobby zone. It's called the Sport Cub S. Its in a RTF kit and is a 4 channel that is in my range of price. Any thoughts on this plane? I looked at reviews and videos on it and it seems like a good trainer.
Oh, and by the way, I had my first flight lesson today on a T-28 and I loved it! No crashes! (some soon to come though…haha) Sadly the T-28 is over my price range.


Senior Member
Personally, I don't like RTF planes. Either the controller can't be used with other planes, or you'll outgrow them in short order. I would consider a Bixler 2 PNF and a 6 to 9 channel radio with receiver. The combination will most assuredly be more than $100, but you'll have something that will get you started, and you won't outgrow anytime soon.
But that's just my opinion. Good luck with whatever you choose.


old headcase
Of your, current list, the sport cub s would be very hard to beat for the simple fact that it's so modifiable and customizable.

Agreed though, if you did well on the t28 you may want to move on to the bixler, fmx easy trainer 1280, axn clouds fly or something to that effect. Any of those I would get without rx/tx if not kit form as quality radios aren't so expensive these days.
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I have another question. Does the bix3 have Ailerons? It never said how many channels it was, and it looked like it had ailerons, but I just want to make sure. Hobby Zone is completely out of stock of the Sport Cubs unfortunately, and won't get them back for a WHILE (like October). So I'm thinking of getting a Bixler RTF, and the bix3 is around $135 on Hobby King. Any thoughts on the bix3?
Id stick to a 3 channel to start. Throwing in ailerons when just staring can get very messy. I have 2 duets. great to learn on. also a night vapor is really easy and fun. but to get the best feel for a bigger plane a mini cub or champ is a great choice. They fly great are forgiving and have characteristics of bigger planes so you learn faster. or anything with the new safe or act technology. really helps.
The Bixler has four channels and optional flaps.
yeah Bixlers flys great. id till suggest smaller for a first plane. depends n if your teacing yourself. id fly a micro for a few weeks then get a bigger plane. if you can afford it. but 60 for a duet you wont likely break it. and if you do foam safe ca will take care of it.
Hey guys I decided on getting the ParkZone Archer 2 RTF kit. It flies great! I got it because it is a plane that I can grow into. Im still scared to land it so I still attach my transmitter to a pro whenever I go out to the field. Maybe soon I'll try landing it on my own! Thank you guys for your help and suggestions! I can't wait to see my experience in RC hobby advance!