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Old 02-25-2011, 09:04 AM   #1
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Why is it when someone looks for suggestions to BUILD something, everyone pipes in with whatever they bought, already built. Have we become a society that only has the skill to go to a store and exercise the mindless technique of shopping?
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:14 AM   #2
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Re: Why

Not everyone has the skill, space or time. For some it is the only way they can get in the air.
Forums are about piping in, giving options and sharing knowledge. Not sure why that's a problem.
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:29 AM   #3
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Re: Why

I'm not sure why, but if your're looking to build something I got this great ARF the other day...

Maybe too much coffee. But I know what you're saying Russ. I started back into the hobby with ARFs and quickly realized that its instant gratification with not a lot of pride involved. Besides, you end up with a cookie cutter airplane that 1000's of other people have also.

I kit built one this fall and another this winter, and it totally changed my perspective. I ended up with something truely my own, and have a lot of pride in the result. When I maidened the first one, I was thrilled...and it flies like nothing I've flown before, just fantastic. I can't wait to see how the other one does.

Fact is, I had so much fun and pleasure in the building process that I already want to start another one. The build itself is a huge part of the enjoyment, and really gives you a much higher respect and appreciation for the model and the hobby.

I should add that I have nothing against ARFs, and it does take a lot of time and equipment, ability etc. to build. If it weren't for ARFs, I doubt I would have gotten back into the hobby successfully.
Dean Myers
MAAC 81138
CMPRA Calgary (www.cmpra.com)
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:34 AM   #4
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Re: Why

I have to say some of the ARF's are getting nicer than they were 10 years ago, I still love the build more than shopping for an ARF. I must say there are times when I am getting frustrated on the build that I ask myself why I did not buy an ARF.
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:49 AM   #5
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Re: Why

I scratch build most of my planes, but ahem... not in the traditional manner.

I build with foam.

I do own several RTF's (mostly the Parkzone UM planes) and one balsa ARF. However, there is much to be said of building your own and watching it fly for the first time. You never get this sort of excitement with an ARF/RTF.
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:15 AM   #6
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Re: Why

I love building. The only RTF aircraft I've ever had was a plastic control line something or other bought for my birthday many, many, years ago. My dad smashed it to pieces on its maiden flight. I was not a happy camper. That was about 35 years ago and I can still picture the crisp fall day, bright blue sky, and the unfortunate choice of flying space -- a deserted mall parking lot, there was no Sunday shopping then -- and my sleek plane hitting the ground and disintegrating.

After a suitable period of mourning I gathered up the pieces and scratch built a plane out of balsa and whatever I could find, painted it bright yellow, fired it up and flew it for quite some time. That one wasn't super pretty, but did have what I thought at the time were cool Luftwaffe crosses on the wings. It flew for a number of years, but eventually #1 lost an imaginary dogfight and augered into the ground. Following building that first plane on my own I got into building gliders and other airframes, some kit built, some from scratch. While I never was great at producing artistic quality results from my scratch building efforts (hey, I was a kid!) it was always enjoyable. And they flew. I'm not sure I ever quite forgave my dad for smashing the RTF (I never allowed him to take a maiden flight again!) but the event definitely got me into building so it's all good.

Anyway... on returning to the hobby without thinking I've made the decision that everything my eldest and I fly will be built by us... and I have recently and happily embraced dollar store foam even though I still love working with wood.

I'd like to build a compact electric sailplane (or two) - something with a functional spoiler to open up flying areas - and will probably want to go kit built for a wood airframe as I already have a foamy mostly constructed waiting for parts and rigging. Any thoughts on what to build in this vein?
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:23 AM   #7
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Elec Re: Why

Yeah Russ and I also rode on the back of my Dad's motorcycle without a helmet. No such thing as a seat belt....and so on.

I too have this dream of a build again like the old days.. Now if work, traffic and bills would just get out my way and give me the time to do it. Still, one day when the kids are educated and ...

Not a rant, but here is a few thoughts to add to the conversation:

I for one believe the advent of this "new fangled stuff" is what is keeping our hobby alive. When I was younger it was the domain of people with money and time or exceptional skills. (I was not one of them so control-line bricks for me!)

If that was still the case I submit we would have few under 50 flying! It would be like model railroads - dying a slow and painful death in the hands of a few old men because to the young it is just plain boring!

So maybe the good news is that the foamies, RTF, ARF's and even the "crappy" stuff sold in the centre court of the mall will get a few "kids" hooked and get em out doors. Then one day a few of them will build those beautiful masterpieces we see and we all dream of.

Our hobby has to compete for air time (pun intended) with the World of Warcraft and dozens of other things that offer a considerably more "imersive" experience to escape to. NOTE : I am not condoning them and don't even want to start that debate I am just saying that progress and the CHOICE of "instant gratification" is a good thing and overall has a positive effect on our hobby.

Just the Friday thoughts of a guy who gets to play with his electric foamies from the back of his car on the way to work that one day will build that perfect scale Spitfire that he dreamed of from the age of 5!

The End!

Go fly before it is too late!
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:26 AM   #8
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Re: Why

Russ, the answer to your question probably has something to do with the philosophy of the world today. The " look what I have" egomaniacs are running rampant with help of the electronic information highway. The electronic medium (Internet) has "dumbed up" how people relate to each other. Rather than talking with someone, they talk "to" someone.

I have seen the nicest people you'd ever want to meet, turn into ignorant morons on Internet forums. I think the reason why people tell other folks about what they have is that it are relating their experience with certain things. Sadly, I have seen people who are newbies at something turn into resident experts in six months, on Internet forum. There is no accountability any more.

I, as a newbie, I practice the "Combine" method of learning about stuff. Read and take in all the information I can. Retain the info that can/will apply to what I am doing, and send the waste out the back.

I was sad to hear that I shouldn't buy a war bird for a trainer plane. I'm 52 years old. Now I can see why trainer planes are better for beginners. I kicked myself for a while for purchasing a trainer plane kit. I have a ARF that is almost identical. The other day I had the two side-by-side. When I looked at them both, I could now see why the building (kit or stick, yeah, even foam) is addictive! Something "mass" produced in the far East will never replace a "one of" for me.

I am just finishing my first build ever. When the instructions said "un-pin the wing from the build board" I did. I got a feeling I haven't had in a very long time. Pride and the feeling of accomplishment have been rare for me in the last few years. Thanks to forums like this one, I was able to increase the angle of the learning curve.

We all have opinions. If we ask a question, we should be aware that the answers we get are likely opinions. Take them with a grain of salt, but ultimately we will have to decide how to apply that knowledge ourselves. Kinda like the old 4-H club motto, "learn to do by doing"!
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:36 AM   #9
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Re: Why

I think perhaps a lot of people are like me. If I "had" to build my planes, I simply wouldn't be in the hobby.

My joy comes from flying the plane, not building it.

And, if an accident happens, I'm not saddened by the loss of a few hundred hours of assembly. All that hurts is my wallet, and I can live with that. I'm more than happy to see ARF kits being built better and better. And from what I can tell, it's getting harder to find a kit plane, as all I see are ARF planes everywhere. Which really doesn't hurt my feelings.

You scratch, or kit builders out there are a dieing breed. You have fantastic skills, and extreme patience. But the instant gratification mentality is taking over all aspects of our society rapidly. And I for one, am on that train............choo, choo.....
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Old 02-25-2011, 10:43 AM   #10
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Re: Why

As to why people jump in with RTF/ARF suggestions when someone asks "what to build", no doubt FastNLow above pegs it - a desire to contribute, or just talk. And maybe some do or don't read and comprehend the question but go off on tangents like I did.

Shawn, you might be amazed at how easy to put together some of the modern laser cut kits are. With a bottle of CA glue and one of these modern self-aligning kits you can get an airframe together in an evening or two or three or four depending on the size and complexity.

They still break though, technology hasn't changed that.
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