I started flying RC in 1991 and my very first RC aircraft was a Crusader Swift. I learned to fly on a 2ch radio that I used to use for my RC cars. I was on twin stick with elevator on the lefthand and rudder on the right.
This glider died is a fairly spectacular way after a wingtip broke off in a loop on Selsley Common. A pretty fantastic end to a fairly good innings!
After this I bought a variety of 2-3 meter built up gliders such as the Goldberg Gentle Lady pictured here. All of these gliders helped me develop my building skills and sheer enjoyment of making flying machines from bits of wood. Something which I think is sadly lost on many recent models.
I also bought Goldberg Sophisticated Lady which I thought was going to be very different to the Gentle Lady but it was very similar to fly.
I then went onto to own an Osprey 64 which was another great glider, but by this time I was getting a bit bored with 2ch rudder elevator.
So I went ahead and bought a Chris Foss Phase 6. This was a real step up for me and it felt like going from a Citroen 2CV to a Ferrari. My first Phase 6 lasted for many years though and it had to go due to wear and tear more than any sudden wipe out crash.
I was given a Robbe ASW17 for Xmas back in about 1998. This is a beastly glider and was fairly scary to fly at first until I got used to its size. Its a great flyer but it has suffered with wing flutter at high speeds, which was pretty terrifying. Unfortunately the canopy became very brittle and shattered a number of years ago and I’m busy trying to find a replacement.
After this I saved hard and bought a Multiplex Flamingo after seeing a fellow RC pilot taking his original Flamingo through its paces. I bought a Flamingo 2001 with Multiplex spoilers (störklappen) and MULTIwinglets. It doesn’t have any dedicated ballast system in the wings or fuselage which is a bit of a shame, and it could really do with inboard flaps to give some more options for mixing and overall roll rate. It’s a bit sluggish in this regard. That said it was, and still is, one of my all-time favourite RC gliders. It flies in some remarkably gentle conditions for its weight and penetrates well in windier conditions too.
Here are a few pics from 2019. The glider is 18 years old this year and still going strong!
I re-learned to fly mode 2 back in 2013/4 as I began to fly model helicopters and it just doesn’t make sense to fly twin stick with helis. This is useful when it comes to taking selfies of your glider with your iPhone whilst still keeping it under full control 🙂
My current glider hanger currently comprises the following models
- Baudis Skywalker 3.8
- Multiplex Flamingo 2001
- Chris Foss Phase 6 (the third one I’ve had!)
- Robbe ASW17
- Simprop Solution XL
- Calypso 6 by Stuart Blanchard
- Graupner ASW22 (an eBay bargain from Peterborough)
- Robbe SF36 motor glider (another eBay bargain from Liverpool)
- Graupner Junior Sport motor glider (Bought from Gliders UK in 1999)
- Tamiya Peak Spirit motor glider (Bought from Hobby Link Japan)
- Thunder Tiger eHawk 1400 motor glider (given to me as the previous owner crashed it and lots interest)
- JP Zagi
- Sailplanes International Osprey 100″