Radio Controlled Model Airplanes

I started flying RC airplanes and helicopters in 2003. In 2006 I joined a local RC club, the Santa Fe Dam Radio Control Modelers, where I routinely fly three days each week. This club maintains a private flying field in Duarte, CA near the junction of the 605 and 210 freeways. The field has a 900x33 foot paved runway, a generous paved pit area, taxiway and flight stations, gravel roads and parking areas, tables and benches, landscaping and other amenities.

Our club is a charter member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) and has been awarded the premier status as a "Gold Leader Club" by the AMA. We maintain a membership of about 130 members. In 2009 I served as Club Secretary.

My early RC planes were towline and electric-powered gliders and small, all-electric planes. Then came various glow- and electric powered planes and helicopters. Now, my interest has moved to gasoline powered giant-scale aerobatic aircraft.

My real passion is flying precision aerobatics (IMAC style) with a 35% Extra 260. I've put 2,400 flights on this plane since 2010. This model, built from balsa and light plywood and covered with Ultracote film, has a wingspan of 104", and weighs about 29 pounds. It sports a 100cc, 2-cylinder gasoline engine built by Desert Aircraft that produces 10 HP. The DA-100 engine drives a 28" carbon-fiber propeller at 6300 RPM producing about 60 pounds of static thrust at full throttle. The 2:1 thrust to weight ratio, typical of IMAC planes,  provides "spirited" vertical performance.

Click on the thumbnails below to see more information and photos of Gary's favorite planes:

35Pct_Extra260_Thmb.jpg  Manufacturer's information:  35% AeroWorks Extra 260 with DA-100 engine

33Pct_Extra260_Thmb.jpg  Manufacturer's information:  33% AeroWorks Extra 260 with DA-85 engine

SportCub_Thmb.jpg  Manufacturer's information:  AeroWorks Sport Cub with DL-50 engine

ThirdScaleCub_Thmb.jpg  Manufacturer's information:  ModelTech 1/3 Scale J-3 Cub with DA-50 engine and 132" wingspan

Yak55_Thmb.jpg  AeroTech28% Yak54 with DA-50 engine

CubOnGrass_Thmb.jpg  CMP J-3 Cub float plane with Turnigy 26cc engine

Knockabout_Floats_Thmb.jpg  Knockabout float plane, designed by Jim Feldman, with OS-55 glow engine

SlowStickCanard_Thmb.jpg  GWS Slow Stick variants

SolarPwrStation_Thmb.jpg  Here is some information on Gary's portable Solar Power Station used in the field to charge the batteries in these planes.