Sunday, July 22nd, 2012 11:35 am GMT -6 Sunday, July 22nd, 2012 11:35 am GMT -6Sunday, July 22nd, 2012 11:35 am GMT -6
Funny pilot on chair flying like an airplane

Minimize the risk of losing your model on your next maiden flight.





First things first! The AMA Safety Code says that you must range check any new models. While you are at it, have your buddy check the correct direction of movement of your control surfaces. Have him also watch out for any signs of binding or play in the control surfaces.

Check the CG! I check the center of gravity before almost every flight. You just never know. If you have a good system in place for doing so, it only takes a couple of seconds.

What’s your plan? Think about where you are going to be flying, what you are going to do if something goes wrong, and about the maneuvers that you are going to be trying out.

During taxiing and the take-off run, watch and listen carefully for any signs of trouble. It is much better to abort the flight before you take-off than to find out while in the air that there is a problem.

What flight maneuvers to do on a maiden flight? First, test the low speed handling. You will need this when you come in for the landing, so you might as well practice while up at altitude.

Similarly, test out the power off handling qualities. You never know when you might lose power, and it is better to get some practice in before it becomes a crisis situation.

If everything looks good, try a high speed dive. This is a good test of the servos, control surfaces, and for flutter. Yes, make sure you are nice and high before you do this.

As you are doing these tests, make mental notes of everything that needs adjusting. More exponential? Dual rates? Mixes? After you land, thoroughly inspect the model, make the adjustments that you noted earlier, and go and fly it again!

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