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Bob Enslow
01-06-2006, 10:59 PM
Do I start with HobbyZone's Firebird Freedom (FF) or Multiplex's Easy Star (ES)? Which is best for a newbie who has to learn by himself? I see pros and cons about both; however, I am not knowledgeable enough to make a decision at this point. I guess what I'm looking for is an experienced "non-affiliated" person to say: "Based on my many years of experience and knowing what I do today, I would definitely want to start out with_____!" Please, just a straight-up answer without the use of super adjectives laced with trite expressions (In other words, no sells pitches like I got from other forums please ) - FF or ES?
________________________________________

This my final decision is not necessarily the last one I will make! http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/upfiles/smiley/spinnyeyes.gif

Will Hicks
01-06-2006, 11:18 PM
Welcome to the WattFlyer!

Looks like you have limited your respondents somewhat.

Try using the search engine here. There is lots of data.

Good luck.

Rugar
01-06-2006, 11:24 PM
Hi Bob,
Welcome to WattFlyer!
Im going to move your post to the Beginners forum where you should be able to get more help.

Don Sims
01-06-2006, 11:56 PM
Learn by yourself? A Push-E-Cat and I think they may be sold through New Creations. The plane is hard to desrtuct being made out of EPP. A lot of fun to fly, you do build a lot of it yourself, it's a pusher, and allows you to make mistakes while you learn to fly.

I spent a lot of bucks on other "trainers" before I bought one. Learned to fly on it and flew it until it got too heavy to take off after numerous heavy repairs instead of light repairs. Mine was hit by a Hawk, flew through barbed wire fences, flown into my metal barn more times I can count, chewed on by dogs and horses but still flew.

Just my 2 cents worth!

NotAnAceYet
01-06-2006, 11:59 PM
I learned on a T-Hawk - that worked for me, but watching a number of other people learn to fly, I would say that the Easy Star would be your best bet.

n001pa
01-07-2006, 02:09 AM
Welcome to WattFlyer Bob.

I had a Firebird Commander and loved it. Of course I already knew how to fly but I found the Firebird to be a versatile and tough bird. It was only 2 channel to so I'm sure the Freedom would be even better.

I don't know much about Multiplex as I haven't tried one yet but I have been thinking about the Easy Star glider for the slopes.

Do you not know anyone locally that flys RC planes? The reason I ask is that you will have greater success if you have an instructor. I found it alot of fun flying with an insructor as well.

Bob Enslow
01-07-2006, 02:38 AM
Will: Thanks for the welcome and, you are right, there is lots of data on the site you gave me (:) ). There are soooooo many companies saying their product is the best for training and it's hard for a laymen to decide what to do. After a week straight on the net I walk around looking like this http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/upfiles/smiley/spinnyeyes.gif all the time.

Rugar: Thanks for the welcome and "flying" me to the right forum.

Don: Thank you for the quick reply. I went on Google and turned up a myriad of sites for the Push-E-Cat. Looks like a good trainer, what with it's simplicity and EPP and all; however I am looking for something RTF. Being self employed "my business owns me" :( -- time is something I don't have that much of.

NotAnAceYet: Once again, thanks for an early reply and for the suggestion to go Easy Star. That was my choice (after extensive "Googling") until I found out that nobody has them in town (no local part support). My local hobby shop spent some time with me (a few days ago) telling me about the Firebird Freedom with it's ACT and having spare parts and how long it takes to order parts off the net etc, etc.

After my posting I ran down to my local hobby shop and got all the AMA paperwork and was lucky to run into a guy that's affiliated with an RC club which has a person who trains. I will be getting hold of him soon. I first have to run inventory of my (convenience) store for Uncle Sam and reopen (been closed since X-mas).

I might be just a bit too ansty after being away from modeling for over 35 years. If I'm going to do this right I might as well follow what the "pros" have said in the tons of threads I've read and attend a few AMA meetings, get to know more about things, and then decide. Things have changed so much since I was a teen and I don't want to be one of those guys who say: "I wish I would have known that before I did what I did". It is absolutely amazing to me how far the hobby has grown and look forward to getting back into it.

Sure is nice to have a forum like this. I hope we get back in touch sometime in the future. In the interim, I got some learning to do.

Thanks again all! :D

Sky Sharkster
01-07-2006, 02:39 AM
Hi Bob, out of the two choices you gave I would go with the Easy Star. This is not a knock on the Firebird, but the Hobby Zone models come with a proprietary radio set, an AM "cheapy" that you will not be able to use in future planes.
With the ES ( or other trainers that don't come with a radio) you will be able to choose your radio; I would suggest a quality FM set from one of the majors like Futaba, JR, Hitec or Airtronics. A decent 4 channel transmitter with a dual conversion FM receiver, transmitter NiCad and wall charger, and a couple of servos will cost between $ 125.00 and $ 150.00. This radio will easily see you through the first several planes you try, and in fact most electrics don't use more than 4 channels, until you get into Helis or competition gliders.
For that price (or slightly more) the set should have mixing, dual rates, expo and maybe a half-dozen model memory. Some will have more features than others. If you decide that R/C planes aren't your cup of tea, you can sell this radio, but the "AeroBird" will be close to worthless.
If you want everything "In one box" I guess the Hobbyzone stuff is OK but if you foresee any more models in your future you will be much better off buying a quality R/C set now.
JMO, Ron

AEAJR
01-07-2006, 03:06 AM
Do I start with HobbyZone's Firebird Freedom (FF) or Multiplex's Easy Star (ES)? Which is best for a newbie who has to learn by himself? I see pros and cons about both; however, I am not knowledgeable enough to make a decision at this point. I guess what I'm looking for is an experienced "non-affiliated" person to say: "Based on my many years of experience and knowing what I do today, I would definitely want to start out with_____!" Please, just a straight-up answer without the use of super adjectives laced with trite expressions (In other words, no sells pitches like I got from other forums please ) - FF or ES?
________________________________________

This my final decision is not necessarily the last one I will make! http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/upfiles/smiley/spinnyeyes.gif








Both planes will serve you well. here is how you choose.

FF Freedom -

Advantages: Typical price, about $140
Flies well, includes pilot assit features,
Available at local stores, parts readily available, XPort options like bomb drop, air to air combat and night fly lights. Completely RTF - nothing to figure out. Peak Charger

Disadvantages - 27 mhz radio more subject to interference from other planes, cars and boats because only 6 channels. New plane so not as much proven experience in market. Components can not be easil;y transferred to other planes.



Easy Star - Typical pice about $170
Flies great, resiliant foam means you probably won't need parts. RTF version comes with 72 mhz radio and components that can be moved to other planes. Easy to upgrade motor. Charger with this plane used to be timed charger, but not sure if that is still true. Peak charger is better.
Easy Star - RTF - $170 - Space CL1
Believe this goes easily back in the box to keep in the car
Super tough foam. Comes with 72 MHz radio in the US.
Good parkflyer and a good glider
http://www.hobbypeople.net/gallery/240025.asp (http://www.hobbypeople.net/gallery/240025.asp)
Easy Star - ARF - Add you own radio gear
http://www.hobbypeople.net/gallery/240009.asp (http://www.hobbypeople.net/gallery/240009.asp)
Amazing information site for easy star
http://www.mpx-easystar.de/ (http://www.mpx-easystar.de/)
Videos
http://plawner.org/video/easygo.wmv (http://plawner.org/video/easygo.wmv)
http://plawner.org/video/easystar.wmv (http://plawner.org/video/easystar.wmv)
Mods, upgrades and more
http://www.mpx-easystar.de/ (http://www.mpx-easystar.de/)
Adding ailerons
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=350408&goto=newpost (http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=350408&goto=newpost)


Disadvantages - Typically not available locally, mail or internet only. Flies with standard 6 cell, but really needs 7 or 8 cells to fly well in more than 5 mph winds.

Both are good choices.

Bob Enslow
01-07-2006, 03:15 AM
You guys on this site are great. I left messges on a least four other forums and never got an answer. I started getting that "here comes another newbie, let's ignore him" syndrome.

n001pa: Sounds like the Freedom (based on what I have read only) is a bit better than the Commander for beginner as it has a larger wingspan, 3 channels, and ACT. I got to look at it first hand and the wings seem a bit flimsy. Not being "that" familiar with the latest technology I could be way out in left field though. Thanks for your input and please read my updated post (you were sending while I was typing :p ).

Sky Sharkster: You, n001pa, and I must have been typing simultaneously! Please read my second post. You make a very good point about the AM vs FM. In fact, that was the first thing I looked for when I went to give the Firebird Freedom (HobbyZone) a once over - guess what - it is FM (3-channel). That surprised me. I don't think it is quality enough for use in future projects - and is not a four channel as you suggested. I totally understand your rational; hence, my aforementioned desire to go to a few meetings and get some training under my belt. That way, if things go as they should, I can start out with equipment I can use for many years to come.

Like I said starting out:

This my final decision is not necessarily the last one I will make! http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/upfiles/smiley/spinnyeyes.gif

Bob Enslow
01-07-2006, 03:32 AM
AEAJR: Thanks for the nice input. I had visited all those web sites which had me leaning toward the Easy Star to begin with. Everywhere I went people were saying how easy it was to repair/learn to fly on.... Had I not gone to my Hobby Shop (HS) I would have ordered it. Call me old fashion but I don't trust ordering things over the net - call me paranoid; but... If my HS would of had one in stock and had spare parts too ..... I would have been all over it.

I think I better stick to my Plan B and go to a few AMA meetings and see if I can get some "learning" in and hopefully some flight training. I don't want to fork over any money for a simulator as yet. Once I know I'm in it for the long hall--than I will. Practice, practice, practice, and did I say practice!?

Thanks Ed, good stuff! Thanks for the 6 key steps too!!!

n001pa
01-07-2006, 03:51 AM
You also might want to consider something like a GWS E-Starter. Good looking plane and one of the best "trainers" I have seen. And if it survives your learning curve then you can upgrade it and still have alot of fun.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v229/n003lb/th_DSCF0626.jpg (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v229/n003lb/DSCF0626.jpg)

AEAJR
01-07-2006, 05:04 AM
AEAJR: Thanks for the nice input. I had visited all those web sites which had me leaning toward the Easy Star to begin with. Everywhere I went people were saying how easy it was to repair/learn to fly on.... Had I not gone to my Hobby Shop (HS) I would have ordered it. Call me old fashion but I don't trust ordering things over the net - call me paranoid; but... If my HS would of had one in stock and had spare parts too ..... I would have been all over it.

I think I better stick to my Plan B and go to a few AMA meetings and see if I can get some "learning" in and hopefully some flight training. I don't want to fork over any money for a simulator as yet. Once I know I'm in it for the long hall--than I will. Practice, practice, practice, and did I say practice!?

Thanks Ed, good stuff! Thanks for the 6 key steps too!!!

Frankly, you are not likely to need spare parts with the Easy Star. Things just glue back together.

If you have a club to go to first, that is the BEST approach. Of course there are clubs that are primarily electric clubs, glow clubs or glider clubs and, of course Heli clubs. So your path will be heavily directed by their recommendations, and that is good. Frankly all forms of flying are fun.

I started on an Aerobird Challenger, but I joined a sailplane club that also accepted parkflyers. Well, don't you know, I got into sailplnes BIG TIME. Now I have, flying today, 3 thermal duration sailplanes, 2 discus launched gliders, 3 slope gliders and 4 electric parkflyers. I really enjoy my parkies, but I just LOVE the sailplanes and gliders.

The point is that you never know where your interests will take you. So don't be too worried about your first plane. You have a couple of good ones there. The club may recommend something different. If they are going to help you learn, definately go with their recommendation, no matter what it is.

After almost 3 years flying I am having so much fun, I wonder if I am breaking a law somewhere. To a large extent that fun is due to the wonderful people I have met in the club. People who are just fun to be around and share this great hobby. I have found that flying with a group of people who share my interests is more fun than flying alone.

Many of my planes I purchased from club members already built. Some were actually given to me because the member just didn't have room, or didn't feel like having that plane anymore and thought I would like it. Some are are called humpty dumpty projects. I put 'em back together again. In the process I am learning to build and to fix.

I recently asked for a little help during a meeting. Man, these guys could
not do enough for me. People were e-mailing me with information, sources, and knowledge I didn't even know I needed. It has been great!

Net net, it is the people as much as the planes that have made this a
wonderful experience for me. I have made many new friends, and perhaps an enemy or two. Yes, the club has restricted me in a few areas but they have expended my experience so much in others that, well, I can live with it.

There are safety reasons, insurance reasons, instruction reasons and all sorts of other excellent reasons to join a club, but the main one is fun. The club has made a very enjoyable experience more fun than I could ever have imagined.

If you don't know how to find them, click on the AMA link below for the
national club listing
http://www.modelaircraft.org/clubmain.asp?sid=1F8CA207945A44318EF9C953BB4CBDED

As you look at the listing, remember that the address given is one of the club member's house, not the flying field. Our club mailing address is 20 miles from me, but the field is only 1.5 miles away.

Clear skies and safe flying!

Bob Enslow
01-07-2006, 07:05 AM
Ed: A big THANKS AGAIN! I went to the web site and got everything I needed to make contact with three different clubs. You've been a great help. I guess I was thinking right the whole time (join AMA, get involved in a club, learn, then go); but, that "second childhood" thing kept getting in the way.

n001pa: Appreciate the info about the GWS E-Starter. Looks like it has ailerons - don't think Im ready for that. You may have modified it yourself. I'm off to search the web about it now.

losi24
01-07-2006, 07:42 AM
a couple of good starter planes would be the GWS Slow Stick, Multiplex Easystar, Multiplex Easy Glider Electric, Mountain Models Magpie, GWS Beaver, and the GWS pico tiger moth. sure, you wont have a fancy computer radio, but it should get you in the air for the first time. you will need a radio with a micro reciever and at least 2 micro servoswith the slow stick, Beaver, Tiger Moth, and Magpie. an ESC of at least 10A(you will want to move up sooner or later), battery and charger. the links below are just of things that would get you started. mind you, it is not top-of-the-line stuff, but it will get you in the air. you will also need Foam Safe CA and/or epoxy. you dont need "kicker", or, CA accelerator, but it sure makes the job easier.


GWS Slow Stick- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXHCJ1&P=ML

Multiplex Easy Star RTF- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXFXV0&P=ML

Multiplex Easy Star ARF(needs radio, esc, battery,charger)- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXFRU7&P=ML

Multiplex Easy Glider Electric ARF- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXKHS8&P=7

Mountain Models Magpie-

GWS Beaver- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXHCL0&P=7

GWS Tiger Moth- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p &I=LXHCJ9&P=7

Futaba Skysport 4 micro- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXGAE8**&P=ML

Futaba 4EXA computer radio micro- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXKSB5**&P=ML

Electrifly C-12 12A ESC- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXKBF3&P=0

Electrifly C-25 25A ESC- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXKBF4&P=0

Electrifly AC Parkflyer peak charger- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXCJE2&P=0

Intellipeak AC/DC pulse charger(not the cheapest but works for TX's, batteries, reciever batteries, etc. very good charger)- http://www2.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXUF43&P=ML

for a battery, just whatever the plane that you get needs.
good luck with whatever you get and happy flying!:)

n001pa
01-07-2006, 08:09 AM
Your right. The E-Starter has ailerons. I keep forgeting people think you should learn with rudder. I was taught on a Big Stick. But then again my instructor was old fashioned.

AEAJR
01-07-2006, 10:36 AM
Your right. The E-Starter has ailerons. I keep forgeting people think you should learn with rudder. I was taught on a Big Stick. But then again my instructor was old fashioned.

The key is that you had an instructor. If you have an instructor, and if you learn on a buddy box, then starting with ailerons makes complete sense.

However much of the small electric/park flyer market is driven by people learning on their own, with no instruction. In that case the inherent stability of a R/E design using high dihedral on the wings makes it easier to lean.

That is why I advised that if one joins a club and can get instruction, then you start with the plane that your instructor advises. Then starting with a 4 channel plane is probably the best path.

If you look at the electric RTFs, very few are 4 channel planes. They are being marketed to the guy who is trying it go it alone. You can't even connect a buddy box to the plane. This is one of the reasons that the traditional glow powered clubs rejected them. But the grass roots explosion that this design produced in terms of numbers of new flyers starting on these planes, then showing up at the clubs forced the clubs to accept these as a valid starting point.

The e-starter can be flown on just R/E. I believe the manual states that you can set the plane up in this fashion, then add another servo and go to ailerons later.

I believe the Multiplex Easy glider electric, an aileron plane, advises this as well, in the manual.

n001pa
01-07-2006, 11:36 AM
I uderstand what your saying Ed and I agree with you completely. I always thought it was easier to fly with ailerons but that's probably just because I learned with them.

AEAJR
01-07-2006, 12:03 PM
I uderstand what your saying Ed and I agree with you completely. I always thought it was easier to fly with ailerons but that's probably just because I learned with them.

Easier with ailerons? I would say ailerons give you more control,but in most aileron planes that control also implies more responsability. The pilot needs to be more involved in the flight.

With Ailerons, and planes typically designed for ailerons, you may have to deal with things like adverse Yaw induced by the down aileron. That will take a bit of rudder to over come. Not all planes, but some.

Aileron planes tend to be less self leveling so the pilot has to actively level the plane. The R/E/hi dihedral planes tend to level themselves.

Aileron planes tend to be better in the wind. Roll control is direct, not indirect, as it is with a R/E plane so you can hold level and fight the wind more easily.

Ailerons give more direct control, but that implies more pilot responsability. When you are trying to figure out left from right and up from down and are doing it on your own, it is nice to have a plane that will tend to want to fly level and will tend to return to level on its own. the R/E electrics are specifically designed this way.

Sky Sharkster
01-07-2006, 12:36 PM
Hi Bob, the GWS E-Starter is my first recommendation as an electric trainer. I like it even better than the the inevitable Slow Stick:
Can be built as r/e/t or r/e/a/t. Control surfaces are partially molded on, most flyers start out with 3 channel, then add aileron servo and move to 4 channel.
Looks and flies more like a typical high-wing monoplane.
Can fly in light to medium wind.
HUGE radio compartment, components protected better.
Easy to upgrade to better brushed or brushless motors, using the (nearly) standard "stick" mount-this is also true of the Stick.
Can be painted (carefully) to look like L 19 Bird Dog or Cessna 180, or other custom finish. This may not seem like a big deal but when there's 5 of the same plane flying it's nice to know which one is yours!
I also agree that a club or informal group of e-flyers will be a big help in making the first flights sucessful, as well as providing a fun social aspect to the hobby. Clubs are not for everyone, however. Some folks stay away because of the "politics" or they don't like the structured system. Can't suit everybody! Whatever you choose, Good Luck! Ron

Don Sims
01-07-2006, 01:15 PM
Well I hate to say this but I've finally found something to disagree with Ed about after reading his posts for years!! :eek:

Ed, that comment about the different forms of flying being fun does have a tiny bit of basis of fact. Electric flying is by far the most fun out of the bunch, the level of fun is off the fun scale in comparison to the others. ;)

Lectric is the only way to go!!! Bob, please don't let those IC guys persuade you into any other direction, stay the course!! (Now I'll get back on topic.)

Bob, the guys have made several great suggestions but if you've researched it down then go with the Easy Star. Ed has given some excellent reasons why.

N

AEAJR
01-07-2006, 03:09 PM
Ed, that comment about the different forms of flying being fun does have a tiny bit of basis of fact. Electric flying is by far the most fun out of the bunch, the level of fun is off the fun scale in comparison to the others. ;)

Lectric is the only way to go!!! Bob, please don't let those IC guys persuade you into any other direction, stay the course!! (Now I'll get back on topic.)


A little biased Don? :rolleyes: Tell us how you really feel. :D :D

flyboy1945
01-07-2006, 05:30 PM
I helped 5 new people with the easy star and they all fly on there own and they still have there planes,need I say more.:D
John

Deereret
01-08-2006, 03:32 AM
Easy Star
Gene

Simi Mike
01-09-2006, 02:25 AM
Bob,
I vote for the E-Starter.
I just maidened mine today and it was a very docile when I wanted it to be.
It was also spunky at WOT with the Himaxx outrunner and 3S Lipo's.
The kit was easy to put together in a couple of evenings and assembly didn't require anything exotic or toxic.
Just my.002.
Mike