Where are the free plans for the new symbol mapping designs?

Killerbean

New member
i cannot find where to get build plans for the new symbol mapping designs. I hope that i am just mistaken as to where to look because it would greatly dissapoint me to see that the flitetest experience has become pay to play.
 

tamuct01

Well-known member
There are many, many, posts, podcasts, articles, and videos explaining that the Master Series builds are only going to be available in kit form. The TL;DR; version is that too many people were copying the plans, duplicating the laser-cut kits, and selling them in competition to FT in clear violation of the terms of use. The Master Series builds are John Overstreet designs made and sold by Flite Test. The OG plans are Josh Bixler's designs. After the cutoff date, Bixler plans are available to FTCA members at a very low cost. No more plans will be released for free. There are plenty (50+?) free plans available on this forum to build and fly, not to mention hundreds more on RCGroups.
 

LitterBug

Troll Spammer
Just once I wish someone would join the forums offering their awesome plans for free instead of "demanding" more free stuff without anything in return. >sigh<
 
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Draftman1

Active member
Have you tried creating your own? You don’t need to know cad, Cut and fit, it’s a trial and error but very rewarding when you complete a model
 

Merv

Site Moderator
Staff member
i cannot find where to get build plans....
There is a whole section of the forums devoted to plans.

Here is the link to most FT plans

Here is an index of free plans others have shared.
 

Killerbean

New member
There are many, many, posts, podcasts, articles, and videos explaining that the Master Series builds are only going to be available in kit form. The TL;DR; version is that too many people were copying the plans, duplicating the laser-cut kits, and selling them in competition to FT in clear violation of the terms of use. The Master Series builds are John Overstreet designs made and sold by Flite Test. The OG plans are Josh Bixler's designs. After the cutoff date, Bixler plans are available to FTCA members at a very low cost. No more plans will be released for free. There are plenty (50+?) free plans available on this forum to build and fly, not to mention hundreds more on RCGroups.
thanks for the information, and sorry for being so clueless
 

Killerbean

New member
thanks to all of you for the information, and sorry for not contributing because i am still a beginner with only a few master series planes under my belt, but i will start designing my own and will post
 

HVAC MAN

New member
There are many, many, posts, podcasts, articles, and videos explaining that the Master Series builds are only going to be available in kit form. The TL;DR; version is that too many people were copying the plans, duplicating the laser-cut kits, and selling them in competition to FT in clear violation of the terms of use. The Master Series builds are John Overstreet designs made and sold by Flite Test. The OG plans are Josh Bixler's designs. After the cutoff date, Bixler plans are available to FTCA members at a very low cost. No more plans will be released for free. There are plenty (50+?) free plans available on this forum to build and fly, not to mention hundreds more on RCGroups.
If you are a member where do you purchase the plans?
 

JTiger

New member
I'm definitely a little disappointed that the new designs aren't published anymore (either for free or paid) and only are available as kits. One of the best things about FT imo was always that it was so accessible for people with a low budget; you could buy $15 of foam from a store and, with just a pen knife, a little bit of hot glue, and some labor, have a perfectly functional airframe. While electronics are always relatively expensive (say around $50 dedicated to a typical model), foam and plans have always been pretty cheap, and equally inexpensive to rebuild/repair if crashed. For kit exclusives the airframe cost is almost double or triple: what would have been $15 of foam is now $15 of shipping plus around $50 for the kit. Obviously, there's a lot of convenience in the pre-cut foamboard, and I do think it's nice that's available for people who don't necessarily have the time, patience, or even space to cut out the parts themselves.

I can also understand the desire to reduce commercial design theft. I guess it just feels like this policy poses a bigger obstruction for the individual who can't justify $65 for an airframe than it poses for someone who has the resources to copy, mass-produce, market, and sell clones. If you can afford to mass-produce and sell a model kit, you probably can manage a couple hundred $$ up front to purchase and scan the original IP.

I know there are a lot of alternative designs out there, as well as the many designs already released by FT that are totally free. I'm definitely grateful to have those available (and I'll hopefully be building one soon; first build since mid-2018!) I also can understand the idea that if you're in this hobby on a shoestring budget you aren't going to be able to have everything that's the latest and greatest; that is a compromise I'm definitely familiar with.

I think my disappointment is mostly because for so long FT really championed scratchbuilding as a way to lower the barrier to entry with RC, releasing models that you could build yourself at a fraction of the cost of commercial offerings. And the key was that these scratchbuilds didn't even seem to compromise on the final product: they're great flying and great looking planes. Now there's an artificial barrier: if you want to build these designs you need to buy our kit and our materials. No more new FT scratchbuilds.

All that being said, I definitely appreciate FT and the excellent models they've developed and published in various forms over the years. Maybe someday if I'm really feeling extravagant I'll bite the bullet and buy a $65 airframe; until then I'll just have to explore some of the other great community designs out there :D
 

Mr NCT

Site Moderator
I'm beginning to appreciate how much work goes into designing a plane AND prepare the plans for public release. You want to make sure that it's at least close to buildable and that the curvy parts are at least close to fitting and then doing three or four builds to find your mistakes. My wife thinks I'm an idiot for uploading plans for free.
Designing doesn't take much money, though you do scrape A LOT of foam board. Fusion 360 is free as are a lot of other CAD programs. It does take a lot of time but is enjoyable. Jump in and try your hand at a plane that you'd really like. Others would probably like it too!
 

Shurik-1960

Well-known member
An interesting problem: the modeler cannot find free plans))). I have redesigned almost all the models that I wanted
and planned. Now I realized that in the summer I will study CAD and Fusion 360. Then I will create models based on the accumulated assembly experience and share free drawings, as Julius Perdana does.