WDRC Tips and Tools..........

What's a wattmeter and why do I need one? Which wrench? Why do I need to balance my cells and my blades? P itch which gauge? An optical tachometer? I have a radio, now I need a "pit radio"? Why can't I just use the screws that came with it? That battery charger costs how much? One of those too? I bought them, what do you mean that they're Dean's?

WDRC will attempt sort some of this out for you and help you NOT make some of the mistakes that we have made along the way. We'll try to explain the whats and the why fors and share with you sources we've found for specialty R/C Hobbying tools and the custom tools that we've fabricated to make R/C life a little easier.

Rules of thumb.........

  • Get your AMA Membership! The Academy of Model Aeronautics is the world's largest sport aviation organization. If your going to fly an AMA membership is about the best $58 you can spend!

  • YOU WILL CRASH! Whether it's a truck, car, Heli, boat or airplane........ YOU WILL CRASH! Don't get discouraged!

  • Rotor blades are consumables! Use flat-bottomed rotor blades while learning to fly your Heli! Wood ones at first-this limits the damage you can cause! Symmetrical blades whether they be made of wood, fiberglass or carbon fiber will do you no favors while learning! They cost a LOT more too! BTW....Plasti-Blades are the second step.

  • Helicopters BITE!  So do airplanes! I have the scars to prove it! Seriously, keep your body parts out of the rotor blades and props. If you're bench testing take the props or rotor blades off. These things are NOT toys, no matter what your wife says. They can be dangerous and cause bodily harm! Please be careful.

  • Keep things in perspective! A 1/10th scale R/C truck going at 40 mph is like you doing it at 400 mph! Pretty amazing, huh? Keep in mind a 5 pound object traveling at 40 mph will hurt if it hits you!

Tip: Buy a Flight Simulator

Aircraft crashes can have significant cost if you don't completely destroy your model. Face it, Crashes are inevitable! If you really want to fly (especially Helicopters), save yourself a lot of grief and expense and buy yourself a good flight simulator-FIRST. For instance, hovering a Heli is extremely difficult and takes lots of practice, then all you have to do is learn how to think in 3 dimensions with only a visual reference. Buy the simulator!

Great Planes' Real Flight Simulator for the PC will cost you about $200 and will pay for itself in short order. Another advantage is that the aircraft featured with the simulator respond realistically and can help with your decision of which model to get (or get next)! There are training "videos" to help you learn techniques and tricks, landings and hovering, different flying sites, variable weather conditions, electric and nitro models to choose from and all controled with a USB R/C transmitter that works just like the real thing and you can hook up your own Futaba too! If nothing else the simulator can help you become accustomed to the controls, that in itself, can make all the difference in the world! Real Flight is awesome and highly recommended by WDRC!