Aeronautics 101 -- Common Questions from R/C Pilots

Thanks to Brian Kelly for putting together a great presentation on the science and craft of R/C model flight. The presentation is split into two parts. Here are the sections and links to the PDF and PowerPoint files:

Part 1 PDF or PowerPoint

Before takeoff

  • Will this plane be stable?


  • How does the prop affect the airplane?
  • Do I need right thrust?
  • Wind
  • Is the “downwind turn” a myth?


  • How to fine-tune the cg
  • Do I need down thrust?

General Handling

  • Plane snaps out of a tight turn
  • Does dihedral help or hinder me?
  • Won’t respond to aileron when slow
  • Unstable or too sensitive?

Part 2 PDF or PowerPoint


  • How can I slow down safely?
  • Should I re-trim for approach?
  • Use elevator or thrust?
  • What will flaps do?

Judge what a new plane will be like

  • Wing Loading and stall speed
  • Power loading
  • Aspect Ratio
  • Servo size

Part 3 PDF or PowerPoint

  • Programming your Transmitter to make the Airplane Easier and More Enjoyable to Fly