I used the words “keep on flying high” in the title for today’s post as a reminder to you that while you are practicing radio controlled model plane aerobatics, you need to make sure you are maintaining enough altitude to allow time to recover from mistakes.
As I started thinking about writing this post, I realized that we haven’t talked about how to do the horizontal roll. Like the simple loop, the roll is part of many of the other more complicated aerobatic maneuvers and you need to learn that and practice it until it too becomes instinctive to you.
Being able to successfully and gracefully complete the roll is necessary in order to perform the Immelman turn, the cuban 8, and other more advanced aerobatics. I would also suggest that you practice some long oval loops as part of the preparation for more advanced maneuvers.
Start a loop and at the top of the circle, add some down elevator to maintain a straight and level inverted flight then at the point where you want to end the long oval loop, feed in up elevator and complete the long oval pattern. Remember to decrease the airspeed as you start the down side of the ending loop. At the bottom of the second half of the loop, use down elevator to level out and continue straight and level flight back to the point where you began the long oval.
This long oval pattern is suggested here just to provide you with another kind of practice to help you become proficient in flying inverted. To make graceful, smooth rolls you need to keep the plane flying level whether it is inverted or right side up.
Okay, now let’s move on to discussing what it takes to roll your plane 360 degrees horizontally. Please remember that each model behaves somewhat differently and you may have to modify these steps to get the smoothest performance from your own airplane.
Start with straight and level flight and it is advisable, at least at first, to be flying downwind and feed in a little up elevator just as you begin the roll. Until you gain some experience, it will be the tendency to end up in a steep dive, so it is good to start with a slight nose up attitude. Quickly give your plane left or right full ailerons and as you enter the inverted portion of the roll, be sure to give it a little down elevator to maintain level flight. Continue the roll until the aircraft has righted itself and is flying straight and level.
I don’t want to overload you with too much new material at one time and I encourage you to practice each maneuver as I have described until you are completely at ease with each new step before moving on to more advanced aerobatics.
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