“What Should You Take To The RC Flying Field?”

Okay, let’s say you have your radio controlled model airplane already to go flying.  What will you need to get it running and ready for take off when you get to the flying field?

Among the most important items that you will need are glow fuel, a battery source for the glow plug, and some means of starting the engine.  Some fliers will use their fingers to flip the prop to start the engine, but that has resulted in injured fingers for people of all ages and experience level.  A much safer and smarter way is to use a “chicken stick” to flip the prop.  This way your fingers and hands are out of the way of danger.  A “chicken stick” is simply a hardwood dowel with one end that is coated with rubber to protect the prop from damage.  Even better, is an electric starter that connects to the prop with a rubber cup.  It not only is safer, but it is also helpful for getting a “difficult” engine started.  Something to consider for sure.

You will also need a means of getting the rc model airplane filled with fuel.  There are a number of different hand-cranked fuel pumps as well as some battery powered pumps available.  Or if you want to save a little money, you can buy a squeeze bulb that will do the job, although it is less convienent than using the pumps mentioned above.

Basically, what I’ve already talked about is all you really need to get the model running and ready to fly.  However, what do you do if you should be unfortunate enough to break a prop or if something else needs to be repaired.  What if you burn out your glow plug or get a hole in the fuel line?  Wouldn’t it be nice to have a few tools, some glue, and maybe some spare props and glow plugs along?  Certainly it is a good idea to be prepared for making any minor repairs.  It isn’t much fun to just get started and find out that something doesn’t work or you need to make a minor adjustment.  So, how do you organize these things and keep them handy for immediate use when at the flying field?

Come back next time and I will give some more information on what to take with you and a couple suggestions for an appropriate flight box to keep everything close at hand and ready for emergency maintenance.  This is the OldManFlier and I will see you next time.

2 thoughts on ““What Should You Take To The RC Flying Field?”

  1. Hello Dwight,

    I just got back from our local ham radio club meeting where our club president gave a presentation on RC planes. He said it was the planes that brought him back to ham radio after having been out of it for several years. It was quite an interesting presentation. Some of the guys in our club have flown RC planes before. The web site for the RC club in this area is http://www.mmrca.org. I’ll try to contact them and give them the link to your blog.

    I asked about the advantage of getting a ham license as it relates to RC planes and learned that hams can operate on some frequencies that other hobbyists don’t have privileges for. That could come in handy in situations where you have to wait to use a frequency normally used by someone else during time at the field. Anyone wanting to learnmore about ham radio can take a look at http://www.arrl.org. It’s really easy these days to get a Tech class license, which would enable use of RC-related ham frequencies. No Morse code required.


  2. Thanks for the input, John, I appreciate the comments. I used to have a general class ham license (WA0NQP), I was fairly active in both CW and AM starting in 1964. I also have the first airplane radio that I started my current hobby with. It is a Heathkit that I had to assemble and it is set up on one of the amatuer frequencies. You are correct it is nice to be the only one in the flying club that on that frequency. Somewhere along the way I let my ham license expire and now to get back into it, I would have go through the testing procedure and go from there, but with my visual impairment and the relearning how to cope with that and all the things involving my new business venture, I don’t have much extra time at the present. At sometime in the future when things get straightened out and working a little better for me, I would like to get back into amatuer radio. For now I just have to take it one day at a time.
    Thanks again for the comment and I’ll see you again later.

    Dwight Hunter — OldManFlier

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