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Old 01-18-2017, 08:06 PM   #1
seanokeefe
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Next steps for improving my flying


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Hi All,

I would like to improve my flying skills this year and although I think that I want to do 3D, I think that the proper route is to work on precision/pattern/IMAC flying, and just generally build my skills as I figure out what I want to do next.

I am NOT interested in flying IMAC competitively.


So, I'd like to ask for opinions about the next things to do/practice/buy...


Flight experience / fleet:

I have the Phoenix 5 flight simulator, and try go get on it regularly to get a feel for the new orientations of precision/3D flying.

I fly with a Devo10 transmitter (DSM2/DSMX) (I might build a simple tray and try it with the simulator)

I started with an Apprentice, but it doesn't do a very good knife edge, or inverted flight, so I have been expanding the "fleet"...

I have played with a few of the Flite-Test planes.

I have been flying a Parkzone Sukhoi SU-29MM (V1) (3s 2200), and have been working on inverted, knife edges, etc. And, trying to be a bit more "scale" than just bashing sticks.

I have a miniFuntana (3s 2200), but not much experience with it. I wasn't good enough to fly it when I bought it, but I was OK with it at the end of last year and will use it a lot more this year.

I have a Hobby King Spacewalker (4s-5000 500kV), and it is how I plan to do a bunch of learning this spring. (https://hobbyking.com/en_us/spacewal...arf-ep-gp.html) It is FAR from a 3D plane, but it is my first full ARF build, it is fun to fly, and generates enough pucker factor to keep me alert.

I also have a P51 from Hangar 9 (http://www.hangar-9.com/Products/Def...ProdId=HAN4425) converted to electric (4s-5000 500kV). It is a bit heavy, but it is another way to do military-style precision. It also keeps me on my toes, and the flaps make it a lot easier to take off and land!

And... the monster. I don't have it in the air yet, but it is "next"...
The monster is an 80-inch class 3D plane, and my first gasser. Unknown airframe, with a DLE55. (picture below!)
(OK, this is my second gasser, my first 72" 3D crashed on its maiden so this is the rebuild... All of the electronics and engine were salvaged, so my winter project is building this one up!)


I probably have enough planes with enough flying styles..., but I am spending all of this snow-bound time looking at 48-60" 3D planes. (XR-52 might be my sweetspot...) (The idea of a plane in the car all the time that flies on practical batteries is appealing...)



Thanks in advance for your comments!!

Sean
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Old 01-18-2017, 08:45 PM   #2
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

I don't know if you got your Wings through the M.A.A.C wings program or not.
Most people don't practice any round or square eights, which to me are the two most important maneuvers that will make you a better pilot. These two maneuvers will program your brain so you don't need to think about what the plane is doing while your turning left and right. It will become second nature as you fly, making you a better pilot. Cheers Floyd
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Old 01-18-2017, 09:14 PM   #3
seanokeefe
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

Thanks Floyd!

I have my wings (although no paperwork or actual wings), so I can do the basic maneuvers with people watching me fly and calling maneuvers.

I'll look up the various "8" maneuvers and work on them. Thanks!

Sean

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Old 01-19-2017, 12:20 AM   #4
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

Quote:
Originally Posted by seanokeefe View Post
I think that I want to do 3D
#1- Purchase a plane that is built for the purpose. Here's a link to help in that quest......http://extremeflightrc.com/
I highly recommend 3DHS or Extreme Flight planes and matched power components. You simply cannot go wrong.

#2 - Sim time, but be disciplined. Get the basics down, and progress from there. It can take months of "daily sim time" before even one maneuver sticks in your brain and becomes "muscle memory". Be patient and persistent. Of course actual flight is best, but smashing your planes can lead to disappointment and frustration. Best not to stray too far from your comfort zone with the real thing. A practice that I've held for quite some time is to be able to accomplish set maneuver on the sim to the point where I no longer have to think about it, it just happens. Then attempt the maneuver at the field with your favorite plane.
Again, here's a link that might be of assistance..........https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...-Michael-Wargo

Fwiw, I left fixed wing some time ago, and now only fly helis. But just as an example, here is a learning routine that I adhere to zealously when on the sim. The odd time I'll stray and try new stuff for fun, but sticking with the program reaps huge benefits.........http://www.chadrg.com/wp-content/upl...-plan-v1.1.pdf
Sorry I couldn't find one for flying 3D planes at this moment, but google is your friend.

#3 - Keep it fun and stimulating. After all, it's just a hobby
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Old 01-19-2017, 07:55 AM   #5
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

Fly lines. Fly a line straight line from left to right and then turnaround and fly the same line at the same speed and altitude. You would be surprised how people can't do that. You have to adjust for windspeed, if in a crosswind use rudder, use different throttle settings and height. When you are proficient with put a maneuver in the center of the line in front of you such as loop. Make the loop round, use throttle to adjust for speed and rudder for torque or wind corrections, come out on the same heading and altitude. This all about you controlling your airplane and not letting the airplane control. It's hard work but great satisfaction when you get it right.
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Old 01-19-2017, 08:39 AM   #6
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

I agree with the sim and getting a workout routine going over the winter. The automatic brain training can be very helpful when learning 3D.

Next critical step is find a 3D friendly club and a group of like minded flyers!

Your location is Dunrobin. I assume near Ottawa? If so, your a stones throw from the Arnproir club and quite a few 3D minded flyers! If your not already flying there, you should be!
Arnproir is also the host of "HUCKING IN THE VALLEY" event! Definitely one the events that is a "must attend" for 3D flyers in Ontario and Quebec! You should be putting it on your calendar now! Probably May 27/28.

http://huckininthevalley.com/

PM me if you want some 3D flyer contacts at Arnproir.
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Old 01-19-2017, 08:50 AM   #7
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

As for planes, I agree with extreme flight, 3dhs, or pilot.

If your electric minded, start with a 57-60" Ef or 3dhs.
Ef extra 300, Ef edge 540, 3dhs slick or edge are all great planes.

You mention xr-52, I assume prec aerobatics. While PA are beautiful planes, very light and capable, they are delicate and thier construction makes them less easy to repair than other brands.

You going to break some eggs learning! Get planes that are capable, that are a easy the fix, that always in stock and easy to replace, and/or easy to get parts for.
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Old 01-19-2017, 01:05 PM   #8
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

Lastly, now that it's winter, take advantage of indoor flying along with your sim time, if you can find it. Indoor is great for 3D skill building! Everything slows down about an order of magnitude! it's slowed to the point where you can think about parts of a move as they are happening! It's like slow motion practice! The cost per crash is the lowest you can get too!

Which brings up another point!

When you start thinking about a new move on the sim, turn the sim time scale down to 50% or even lower! Work thru the move in slow motion, over and over until you can do it at that time scale! When you can do it clean at that speed 10 times in a row with no issues, bump the time up by 10% and repeat until you burn the move into your brain!
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Old 01-19-2017, 07:27 PM   #9
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

These are all great replies! Thank you!

(Especially the ones that say I should buy another plane!! Thanks Shawn!! Great names think alike!)

I have spent a lot of time looking for the "right" 3D plane, and as hinted above, there are too many good choices these days. Smaller EPP planes are cheap, cheap on batteries, and they bounce! Smaller balsa planes are easy to transport, easier to replace , and cheaper on the battery budget. Bigger planes are more stable, but more expensive, with more expensive batteries, and cause tears when the crash...

I thought that the PA XR-52 would be a a good in-between with 4S batteries.
I have heard that for the PA's that light=fragile, and it is a worry/concern.

The EF/3DHS planes are also beautiful. The power of those (or the PA XR-61) on 6s seems just completely insane.

I didn't know about PilotRC - thanks for the info - looking at them now.

My favorite graphic design is the Raven series from General Hobbies. It is a cheaper airframe, but it is not the same quality as the above planes.

To first order, it is just a decision about $$. (first buy, repairs, replacement, batteries...)
To second order, there is transport, re-use of batteries, the 2x 3s = 6s appeal of PA for re-use of batteries, etc...


Can anyone chime in on 20cc or 30cc gas options for this size of plane?? The engines are expensive, but flights are "free".
Electric is instant power, and (hopefully) no dead-sticks, etc...


OK... OK... enough about planes....


I am pretty sure that the Spacewalker could do all of the basic maneuvers....
And the big gasser should be a very stable and capable plane, but probably with too much pucker factor at the beginning...
(and I will post questions about the power of the servos that I have in that plane for 3D use. I expect that they are more than good enough for initial aerobatic flying)


Straight lines are actually quite hard! And they get the nerves going also. Just straight passes, close to the ground at various speeds are a challenge, and I know that I should do more of them. And I will this year (I promise!) I am learning how important they are.



I found a really good series of videos on youtube. This one happens to be about a loop, and how to make it circular.



I'll try the sim at slower speeds. I tend to run it at or above 100%, to try to turn the "tame" simulator into a more realistic simulation of a twitchy real plane.



I live in Dunrobin, which is actually a couple minutes from the Dunrobin Flyers club (where I am a member), and about 15/20 minutes from the Arnprior club (where I might become a member this year).

CRAVEN: I will PM for some Arnprior contacts



Thanks all!
Sean
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Old 01-19-2017, 08:04 PM   #10
seanokeefe
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Re: Next steps for improving my flying

I have watched a lot of videos of the PA Addiction series.
They seem almost "cartoonish" planes (with their over-sized wings...), but they might be a good choice for a "floaty" plane.

As much as the PA video makes them seem strong, they look very/extremely fragile.

Is "floaty" a good idea?

The 6s EF/3DHS/PA seem like exactly the opposite of "floaty".

Thanks!
Sean
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