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Center of Gravity Basics

After checking your engine performance and the radio operation, always make sure that your model is properly balanced before your first flight. It happens too often, unfortunately: Someone with a ... Continue reading ... Join our premium membership! The post Center of Gravity Basics appeared first on Model Airplane News. View the full article

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Making Functional Biplane Rigging Wires

Many sport scale biplanes are designed with wings that are strong enough without the use of rigging wires (landing and flying wires). However, if you want to add them as a scale enhancement for its appearance or if you are building a scale multi-wing which does need them, here’s a great way to make them without expensive scale turnbuckles. Remember, even if they are not required, the do increase the strength of your model’s wings. I Here’s how it’s done using standard, readily available RC hardw

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Top Gun High Static Winners

When it comes to competing at Top Gun, there are two parts to the aircraft’s score; the static score and the flight score. Before the flight rounds are flown, aircraft in the Masters, Expert, Team, and Unlimited classes must first be judged for their static score. The model is inspected and evaluated according to the modeler’s own doc*mentation booklet and points are given for Outline, Color, Markings and for overall Craftsmanship.In case of a overall Static Score tie, then the tie is broken by

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Top Gun From the Judging Table

Each year at Top Gun, there are dozens and dozens of amazing scale aircraft that find their way to the Static Judging table . With the best judges in the industry, the Top Gun Scale Invitational has the highest level of excellence you’ll find at any scale event. Several judges share the tasks of checking scale outline, color and markings and comparing their findings against the modeler’s doc*mentation. The work is non-stop and all the judges deserve to be recognized for their efforts. Craft

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Ease your pilot load — Easy programming for 3D maneuvers

We always learn how to perform new maneuvers by watching the stick movements of a top notch pilot, but what the pilot knows is that there computer mixes is what makes their life easier when controlling the aircraft.  Now we are going to present a few tips that will make it easier for you to perform those same aerobatic tricks. Our main focus this time is on radio programming and setup.  This knowledge  is a key element that enables pilots to fly outrageous 3D maneuvers with a computer radio syst

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Scale Modeling: Weathering Tips & Tricks

After you’ve painted your model, add some weathering to really bring a scale plane to life. Each technique by itself is very effective and, added together, really produce astonishing realism.  My friend Dave Reid commissioned me to paint his giant-scale SNJ Texan, and it has been the example for these ongoing how-to articles. I weathered and detailed the Texan, which I painted with latex in early U.S. Navy markings. As I mentioned in the earlier article, a little goes a long way, so always use a

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Top Guns Free-Flight Scale

A First Class Stick & Tissue Compet*tion During the past few years, event org*nizer, Leonard Bechtold, Bob Curry, and L*N Henderson, have been striving to keep alive the old tradition of the free-flight, mass-launch event. The roots of the event were planted several years ago by Dave Platt who showed everyone how free flight models are suppose to perform, back in the very early days of Top Gun. Model aviation in its purest form, the Top Gun free flight event is both very challenging and ul
 

Mini Mustang: Is it scale?

This 80% scale Mustang, built in the U.S., puts on a show at the Willis Warbirds Fighter Meet in Little Gransden, UK. Love that V8 engine and 4-blade prop! The pilot is eerily lifelike.     The post Mini Mustang: Is it scale? appeared first on Model Airplane News. View the full article
 

And the Winners Are… Top Gun Special Awards!

Every year at the Top Gun Scale Invitational special achievement awards are presented to the standouts in the various classes. Here is are the 2019 winners starting with the High Static awards. (Photos by David Hart) (Below) “Mr. Top Gun” Peter Goldsmith Awards Modeler                       Aircraft        Static Score         Sponsors Masters High Static    David Hayes                 Thrush             99.167                CARF-Models   Expert High Static   Peter Goldsmith      
 

Flight Setup & Programming for 3D

Our main focus this time is on radio programming and setup. A key element that enables pilots to fly outrageous 3D maneuvers is the computer radio system. Learn to take advantage of your computer radio, and you’ll be able to improve your flying in a variety of ways. Having a properly set up plane with the right radio programming makes performing both simple and complex maneuvers a little easier. Let’s see what we can program in and how it will help.   DUAL AILERONS Dual ailerons allow you to
 

Mr. Top Gun, Peter Goldsmith

Congratulations to Peter Goldsmith for earning the top spot and Mr. Top Gun title at this year’s invitational! Peter flew in the Expert class, and his 145.66-inch-long Hawk 100 is from the Tomahawk Aviation composite kit. The static judges awarded the Hawk 99 points — the highest in the Expert class! — and Peter flew it two rounds with his Spektrum radio to earn 98.9 and 95.3 flight scores and 196.1 total points after throwing out his lowest flight score. The post Mr. Top Gun, Peter Goldsmith
 

Top Gun: Day Two — Flight Scores coming in

Our good buddy and MAN contributor J.P. Ash is doing a great job competing at Top Gun and today on day two, he posted a great second round flight score. His MiG 15 is an impressive sight on the flybys for sure! Good Luck P.J. Photo by David Hart. The post Top Gun: Day Two — Flight Scores coming in appeared first on Model Airplane News. View the full article
 

Horizon RC Fest

Mark your calendars June 7th-9th for a weekend of RC at Eli Field in Monticello, Illinois and sponsored by Horizon Hobby! The Horizon RC Fest is a fun-focused event that shares high-tech RC products everyone can enjoy. From the folks at Horizon: It’s almost time for the 3rd Annual Horizon Hobby RC Fest. There’s no other event like it. RC Fest is the largest gathering of radio-controlled cars, trucks, airplanes, helicopters and drones in the Midwest. Skilled modelers square off in thrilling comp
 

Top Gun Flightline Highlights

Our good buddy and Top Gun competitor Bret Becker shared some flightline photos with us as the first day at Top Gun gears up for action. Check out these great airplanes! The post Top Gun Flightline Highlights appeared first on Model Airplane News. View the full article
 

The Road to Top Gun Leads to Excitement!

Today the 31st Annual Top Gun Scale Invitational kicked off the action with great weather and some amazing airplanes! Here are some of Bret Becker’s amazing XB-70 Valkyrie Supersonic Bomber. From Dayton, Ohio, Bret Becker will again be back Top Gun in 2019 competing with his upgraded XB-70 Valkyrie. Bret’s goal this year is to improve his flight scores and finish in the top half of the field. Over the past year his XB-70 has received several upgrades including larger LiPo packs for increased
 

Top Gun Starts Today!

The 31st Top Gun Scale Invitations is kicking off today May 1, and it promises to draw the best of the best Scale RC airplanes and pilots from around the country and the world. Check out our Road to Top Gun landing page at www.modelairplanenews.com/road2019 to see several of the amazing competitors hoping to earn the title “Mr. Top Gun”. The post Top Gun Starts Today! appeared first on Model Airplane News. View the full article
 

Hybrid Fokker Triplane

When it comes to scale RC modelers, especially WW I fanatics, one thing is for sure, they always find a way to use what they have and turn it into som*thing extra special. So the story goes with our good friend and MAN contributor Sal Calvagna and his newly test flown hybrid 1/3-scale Fokker Dr.I Triplane. Sal had acquired a partially started 1/3 Fokker triplane project built from Ron Weiss Plans, (available from Ziroli Giant Scale Plans). The tail feathers were framed up as was most of the b
 

Road to Top Gun: F-104 Starfighter

Brian O’meara is returing to Top Gun this year and will be competing in the Unlimited class with his impressive 1/4-scale F-104 Starfighter. Brian debuted the Starfighter at Top Gun two years ago and has put on a lot of time in its log book since then. Brian will be using a Futaba 18MZ radio system and has a Jetcat Pro 300 turbine engine for power. The F-104 is based on the Airworld Kit and was built by Trond Hammerstadt. Photos by David Hart The post Road to Top Gun: F-104 Starfighter ap

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Road to Top Gun: Hawker Seafury

This year Bill Freeland (Owner) and Greg Foushi (Pilot) are dedicating their Top Gun 2019 Pro-Prop entry to honor Walt Carnes (its builder), who passed away last year. (Flight shot by Carl Layden) Walt was a great modeler, Top Gun Competitor but most of all a great guy!  Walt’s passion was model airplanes and once getting the opportunity to compete against the best of the best at Top Gun Walt was all in. Walt built the Hawker Seafury from an Airworld  kit and is finished as “Sawbones” the

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Road to Top Gun: Cessna L-19 Bird Dog

Our good buddy and Team Hitec pilot, Roger Niolet, of Sarasota, FL. will be competing in the Pro-Am Sport with his 1/4-Scale Cessna L-19 Bird Dog. Built from Vailly Aviation plans Roger will be flying it with a Hitec Aurora 9X Transmitter and a Hitec Optima 9 receiver. The Bird Dog is powered with a Saito 270 on glow fuel with the CH ignition system. The servos are all Hitec, six 645MGs and one 82MGfor throttle. Dual LiFe batteries supply power to the ignition using an optical k*ll switch and

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P-47 Thunderbolt Makeover

I’ve always liked Republic’s big P-47 Thunderbolt and I’m certain I’m not alone. A longtime favorite of warbird enthusiasts, the Jug has its own remarkable place in the history of aerial warfare. In service about the same time as the equally well-known P-51 Mustang, Supermarine Spitfire, and Messerschmitt Bf 109, it had very little in common with the others. Sure, they were all considered “fighters,” all very capable and some better than others in specific areas. One thing the Jug did not share

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Road to Top Gun: Hawker Siddeley Gnat

Traveling all the way from the Island of Malta (Republic of Malta), Brian Busuttil will be competing this year at Top Gun with his Hawker Siddeley Gnat T.1. The Gnat is going to be a Team entry, and was built by Keith Woods from Scale Composites in the UK. The Gnat is a 1:3.5 scale, with a length of 109.84 inches and a wingspan of 82.28 inches, the jet weighs 61.73 pounds. The model is guided by a Futaba radio, and Brian is using the SmoothFlite ARXL receiver from BoomaRC, along with their th

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The Cold Blue!

A tribute to the men who won the ultimate victory 75 years ago, this movie will be showing in select theaters May 23rd and will be available on demand on HBO June 7th. Featuring extraordinary, never before seen color footage shot by one of the world’s greatest directors, William Wyler, you’ll feel as though you’re 30,000 feet over n*zi Germany, battling killer flak, enemy fighters and 60 below degree temperatures. All the odds were stacked against returning home alive – and men literally died to

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