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R/C Model Rocket / Glider kits???

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Jack1972

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Is anyone aware of any kits currently avaiable for rocket / gliders that are remote control capable?

Seems like a fun concept to me!
 

TheAviator

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Is anyone aware of any kits currently avaiable for rocket / gliders that are remote control capable?

Seems like a fun concept to me!
There are no kits I know of that are currently available. That being said, several have been available in the past. These include:

Estes Stratoblaster, Sweet Vee, and Centurion
Aerotech Phoenix
VectorAero 'Cuda and Stingrays (Plans are available on the interwebs)

Unfortunately, they are all OOP, but there are still some floating around on E-Bay and what not.

There are also some kits/ARF HLG/DLG gliders out there that make for excellent conversions. The Fireworks Mini DLG (don't recall the manufacturer) and the Art Hobby Colibri both make excellent conversions with decent performance. Chan Stevens did a Colibri conversion a while back, you may want to search for it here or on rocketreviews.com . He gives a very comprehensive conversion process.
 

gpoehlein

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Actually, there is one RCBG kit available right now - the Edmonds Arcie II. It is only 1 channel (ailerons) and uses a seperating pop pod for launch like a boost glider. This means you don't have to control it during the boost phase. BMS had a package deal available with both glider kit and radio. (May still have - I haven't looked lately). There are a couple reviews on EMRR:

http://www.rocketreviews.com/reviews/all/edm_archie_ii.shtml
 

Jack1972

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Good stuff Will. Any idea how much the servos and remote equipment would be? Those videos of the rocket planes were pretty awesome.
 

WillMarchant

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Good stuff Will. Any idea how much the servos and remote equipment would be? Those videos of the rocket planes were pretty awesome.
Zero (if you go to the local R/C club and someone hands you their old 72 MHz system) to $1000 if you buy the top of the line spread spectrum system.

The RandR aircraft are for intermediate/advanced flyers.

The ArcieII would be a better introduction to R/C boost gliders. http://www.balsamachining.com/CATALOG.htm has the kit for $35 and a radio system for $150 additional. That (analog) radio system could be used for your next model(s).
 

TheAviator

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Zero (if you go to the local R/C club and someone hands you their old 72 MHz system) to $1000 if you buy the top of the line spread spectrum system.

The RandR aircraft are for intermediate/advanced flyers.

The ArcieII would be a better introduction to R/C boost gliders. http://www.balsamachining.com/CATALOG.htm has the kit for $35 and a radio system for $150 additional. That (analog) radio system could be used for your next model(s).
Though, in all honesty, I would recommend purchasing a four channel radio, minimum. My first system, a Hitec Laser 4, cost only $140, and that was a 4-CH TX, a 6-CH RX, and three HS-81 servos. (I think there is also a package that comes with some "feather" servos appropriate for the Arcie.) That was... three years ago, I think? Since 72MHz has been on the out and out, I imagine you could pick up a set somewhere for considerably less than that.

In any case, a four-channel radio is a lot more versatile, as it will allow you to fly other R/C aircraft, should you ever decide to go that route.
 

chanstevens

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The very available and affordable Edmonds Arcie II is an outstanding introduction to R/C rocket-powered gliders. Very easy to learn, simple to build (can seriously be flying after about 2 hours' effort plus letting glue dry/charging batteries overnight). The only downside is the gear is not very good by current standards. You can leverage the transmitter and receiver into other models, but the lack of functionality like model memory and digital trim makes the gear a little bit inflexible.

If you have prior piloting experience, then you could consider the more advanced concept of rocket gliders. The Arcie is technically a boost glider, riding parasite on a separate pod/carrier that needs to be prepped and recovered (parachute) each flight. A pure rocket glider goes up and comes down all together. This generally requires better stick skills, but having "mastered" the Arcie, I've moved into RCRG's and really have no interest in going back to boost gliders. In my personal experience, the main challenge with RCRG's is getting it trimmed well before sending it up on a full motor to crash and burn. Hand tossing first, followed by a few "lob" flights with barely enough motor to carry the model is the way to go.

Unfortunately, there aren't any decent RCRG kits out there other than some higher end stuff that's expensive/hard to fly. There are plenty of glider kits designed for discuss (hand) launch that are easy to convert to rocket power, though. As Brian mentioned, I did a basic conversion write-up of a Colibri on rocketreviews.com. It's a $99 bird, 1 meter span, and wound up being very easy to con ert after I got past some boneheaded mistakes.

--Chan Stevens
 

chanstevens

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P.S.--I also recommend an Estes Sweet Vee if you can find one. They pop up every month or so on Ebay, usually getting $75-80. It's a pretty heavy bird about a pound depending on build skills, but is another one very easy to build, very easy to trim for a safe and reliable first flight, and even includes plans for a cheap and easy tower to launch it from.
 

WillMarchant

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Though, in all honesty, I would recommend purchasing a four channel radio, minimum. My first system, a Hitec Laser 4, cost only $140, and that was a 4-CH TX, a 6-CH RX, and three HS-81 servos. (I think there is also a package that comes with some "feather" servos appropriate for the Arcie.) That was... three years ago, I think? Since 72MHz has been on the out and out, I imagine you could pick up a set somewhere for considerably less than that.

In any case, a four-channel radio is a lot more versatile, as it will allow you to fly other R/C aircraft, should you ever decide to go that route.
Agreed. And going with an entry level "spread spectrum" system might be wise.
 
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