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Indoor Flying

Frank Weaver, PDQ Flyers

Flying RC model aircraft indoors requires special designs. Because of limited space, walls, ceilings and floors, a proper designed indoor flying machine is required. Outdoor models are flown outdoors and indoor models are flown..........well, they can be flown outdoors too, so they're twice as good. There are exceptions to these rules, that's if your a proficient 3D stick wiggler.

Now, we want to be able to do more than just flying around in circles trying to avoid smacking the wall and if we do, we don't want to spend half the flying session fondling the hot melt glue gun. So, what's needed is an Aerobatic Light Electric machine, or the AL-E principal...... 'floats like a butterfly and stings like a bee'. You need the 'light weight' to fly slowly and the 'punch' to pull out of trouble. A good example of this type of design is my 17" version of the Drenalyn www.lecreusot.net/aeromodelisme/drenalyn at 5.8 ounces and a wing loading of 2.8 ounces per square feet, it was bounced off the walls, ceiling and floor for two indoor sessions and the only minor repair was a failed land gear attachment, which took ten minutes to improve and fix. ( Note: don't use CF rods for LG. ) With a few clicks of trim here and there, it will free flight around in a hover, yet is capable of some extreme 3D. Anyone can fly it, it's just that easy.

If you poke around on the internet, there's endless reading on the subject of what's suited for indoor flying. So, to help you decide, here's what to look for in an indoor design if you want to cruise around, but with aerobatic capabilities........it must be light, with a low wing loading (for it's size) and the power system must be capable of spinning a large diameter prop and generating more thrust in ounces than the flying weight of the model. Low weigh means slow flight and a large diameter prop allows it to fly slow. The model design and the power system must work together.

Your power system should be a 3S setup to keep the amps low when spinning large prop, allowing the use of a small and light battery. What I mean by 3S is that the motor must be wound for three cells with lots of turns, a low Kv and low amp draw, capable of turning big props.

Look for a model design that is simple, light, quick to build, light, easy to repair, light, cheap to build and above all else........LIGHT. When you find that 'perfect' design, not try to improve it by making it stronger, if anything improve it by making it lighter. It will fly much better and less damage will result from impact.

So, next time, leave those outdoor flying machines at home, build a proper indoor model and have a load of fun at the next indoor, with more flyin' than fixin'.

Fly SMALL, have a BALL…….FrankE


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