My Best Beginner RC Plane Advice

Welcome to RCTalk

Come join other RC enthusiasts! You'll be able to discuss, share and private message with other members of our community.

GBLynden

RCNT Basher
Messages
64
Reaction score
74
Your First RC Plane

This thread contains the Best RC Plane Beginner Advice I can offer someone looking to get into flying RC Planes safely and with the highest probably of success. While there are many different schools of thought on how to approach this, listed below are the planes and tips I offer folks asking questions in the comments sections of my YouTube videos, which have helped 100’s of people worldwide achieve success in this hobby.

Before you can rip at 100MPH with that cool looking EDF Jet that flies with a 6S brick for a battery, you need to develop the muscle memory to handle split second decision making. That often will make a difference between a pile of foam on the ground or getting your plane safely back on the ground in one piece.

I have found that the best way to get there is select what is best described as an RC Trainer Plane as your first plane. This is generally one that has a high wing placement on the body of the plane and some up angle called dihedral. What that does it is make the plane more stable and easier to fly. They also tend to be less frill oriented meaning they do not have flaps or retracts. For the beginner, those are just an added layer of scale complication that is not needed at the beginning of your RC Journey.

A very common type of Beginner RC Plane are known as a Ready To Fly (RTF) RC Planes. I show and describe a few common offerings below:

Arrows Pioneer - This is currently the best trainer plane for less than $160 IMHO

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


WL Toys Cessna 182 - Price and durability are its biggest selling points, but you should be in high rates for success.

Unboxing & Maiden Flights:


FMS Ranger with GPS - This is more complicated than most trainer planes, but it flies great.

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


Apprentice STS 1.5M RTF - This is the Gold Standard for RC Trainer Planes, but it is a lot of money for most beginners to invest before they are ready to fully commit to the hobby.


Possible Second Planes

These are often High-Wing RC Planes, RC Gliders, and some other slow flyers like the UMX Night Vapor shown:

E-flite UMX Night Vapor

Unboxing:


Shop Flight:


E-flite UMX Timber

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


Durafly Ugly Stick

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


E-flite UMX Radian

Unboxing:


Flight Video With Bugs:


Arrows SZD-54 Glider

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


E-flite Night Radian

Bill's Maiden Flight:


Night Flight:


Possible Third Planes

Once you master flying the 4-channel planes in the second plane list, you may be able to consider the planes listed below as a third plane.

E-flite Turbo Timber Evolution

Maiden Flight:


Durafly Tundra


E-flite T-28 Trojan - A great beginner warbird

Unboxing:


Second Flight:


E-flite Carbon-Z Cessna

Second Flight:


Maiden Float Flight:


Possible Fourth Planes

RC Warbirds

The best first RC Warbird is a mid-winged plane like a T-28. It generally does not matter which brand, though some come with some excellent features such as gyros.

Arrows T-28 Trojan - Tim modified this for way more speed than stock.

Demo Flight After Upgrades:


H-King Moonbeam McSwine

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


H-King A-1 Skyraider

Maiden Flight:


E-flite P-51 Mustang - This is the most advanced option on this list and the most expensive.

Flight Demo:


RC Twins

E-flite Twin Otter

Bill’s Maiden Flight:


Avios King Twin

Maiden Flight:


Avios Albatross HU-16 V2

Maiden Flight:


FMS Tigercat

Tigercat Demo:


RC Biplanes

E-flite Ultimate 3D

Bill’s Maiden Flight:


E-flite Pitts 850

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


FMS 1400mm V2 - This requires 6S batteries, so this is not for beginners to bipes

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


Best First EDF Jets

Arrows Viper


Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


E-flite UMX Citation

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


E-flite F-15 64mm EDF

Unboxing:


Maiden Flight:


E-flite UMX A-10 - The CG can be tricky to dial in, but once it is, what a great RC Jet!

Complete Unboxing & Maiden Flights:


Fun Flight:


Freewing Lippisch P.15 64mm - A launch switch and fabric grip tap help with launch success

Unboxing:


Fun Flight:


Please ask any reasonable question below and I will do my best to answer them. For those of you with your own strong opinions regarding a recommended path to success with RC Flight, please be civil as we help those that need our guidance to enjoy this wonderful hobby :D
 

Greywolf74

I'M TO BLAME!
Lifetime Supporter!
Supporter
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
14,553
Reaction score
6,952
Location
Ohio
RC Driving Style
  1. Bashing
Welcome to RCTalk and thanks for joining!

This is a cool thread! Great info!

If you're new to the RC hobby, we have several very active threads here on RCTalk that could be especially of some help for you to making your start into the hobby much more enjoyable and easier!


Even if you're not new, we would still love to hear your feedback on the tools and electronics you are using in the above threads!

Quick Forum Tips



If you do the social media thing, be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

Premium Membership





Military roll call: Active Duty | Veterans
Have RC News? Email us here.
Become a Forum Sponsor | Support RCTalk
 

Doom!

Team Dust Devil
Lifetime Supporter!
Supporter
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
5,870
Reaction score
8,301
Location
Central California
RC Driving Style
  1. Bashing
  2. Crawling
  3. Scale Builder
  4. Flying
Nice bit of info @GBLynden . When I started, I learned the hard way and wish there was more info available like this. It's cool that you are helping beginners navigate their way through all the choices out there. Everyone wants to start with a cool plane like a warbird or a jet without first learning the basics.
 

Xraycer

Hardcore RCNT User
Lifetime Supporter!
Supporter
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
3,458
Reaction score
5,805
Location
NH
RC Driving Style
  1. Bashing
  2. Racing
  3. Crawling
  4. Flying
My very first attempt at flying was about 20 years ago, with a 2 channel pusher glider. The maiden session ended in less than 2 minutes. Results: crash and breakage!
Fast forward, 20 years later, to last year, I picked up this tiny little warbird. With today's flight assist technology and a very affordable price, I'd decided to give flying another go.
This time around I did much, much better. This little plane essentially flew itself and is super durable. Sustaining numerous hard crashes, yet just kept getting l back into the air. The small size was highly affected by the lightest breeze, made the controls very touchy, and hard to see. However, this small size also allowed it to be down at a much slower speed, therefore made it very forgiving.
Then my next upgrade was that FMS Ranger listed above. This plane was also excellent to learn on, except for one thing. The landing! This plane would be perfect for a beginner if it wasn't for that very weak front landing gear. The front landing gear required an ideal landing inorder to not damage it. Unfortunately, landing is the most challenging of basic skills for a new pilot.
Maybe my gps had some sort of issue, but it sometimes took over 5 minutes for it to sync up to all the required satellites. Until it does, the plane won't fly. Unfortunately, it is not a feature that could be disabled. I would not recommend this model for a first time flyer.
1228201559_Burst01.jpg
0220210832.jpg
0220210832_Burst01.jpg
 
Last edited:

GBLynden

RCNT Basher
Messages
64
Reaction score
74
Thanks guys! I have more info I have laid out on a document I have been working away at during my winter break for my website. My plan is to add that here too. The formatting can take forever though lol

As far as that Ranger goes, the front nose wheel and GPS being tricky are valid points. I have a few more legit trainer planes I have not been able to fly, so I kept them off the list for now. I was surprised at how smooth that Ranger way and liked the throttle response for beginners as it has a slower rollout than most planes, even beginners.

GB
 

Noah Zimmerman

RCNT Basher
Messages
42
Reaction score
29
Location
Santa fe, New Mexico
RC Driving Style
  1. Bashing
  2. Flying
I completely agree on this being the best choice for a first plane. Eachine p51 mustang. After buying a few planes as I am learning, I wish I had bought this first. It's cheap, easy to fly, handles great in all three modes, pretty durable, does ok in light wind and you can fly it in a very small area. I like it so much, I plan on buying one of the other 400mm warbirds next(corsair or t28). Out of the three small planes I have, I have only wanted to fly this one. So fun to fly.
 

Attachments

  • 20211216_134945.jpg
    20211216_134945.jpg
    409.9 KB · Views: 29

GBLynden

RCNT Basher
Messages
64
Reaction score
74
Options are always good! My buddy has the BF-109 and while it flies ok, it is nothing I would compare to a legit trainer plane.

If someone does go that route, at least they will know it is just a little more risk than the other planes, BUT can still get the job done for some :)

GB
 

GBLynden

RCNT Basher
Messages
64
Reaction score
74
I want to bump this thread for those that were inspired to get into RC around the holidays.
 
Top