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Member postings for Nightflyer

Here is a list of all the postings Nightflyer has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Electric Round The Pole
17/07/2017 12:57:29

Meant also to say that aside from the usual KK and Veron models that Guillows range also lent themselves to RTP conversion. The B25 and B17 were seen to be the epitome of RTP at the time. I really like the B25 that I have. Of course it was only a matter of time before we could get a Lanc which there is good plan available.

A couple of people built flying boats and I did see a Sunderland, and a Catalina a few times at the MEE and Sandown, although the ultimate I think was a Spruce Goose. Only saw it once as it needed long lines and some power too. Oh to have been able to build a B36 or Bristol Brabazon would have been good. Sadly I don't have the luxury of space to fly on 10m lines in my back garden.

17/07/2017 12:50:54

Re: Pup Cam's post. Yes the Pitts was possibly my favourite RTP model I have a kit still to build in the workshop. I enjoyed my first one when in my teens with a geared motor for aerobatics.

Yes the good old FT36D's the life blood of RTP in the 70's and even today.

I loved RTP at Wembley and then for a while later at Earls Court IIRC and also Alexandra Palace for a year or two.

I think RTP was the young modeller's friend as models could be easily built i.e. sheet profile models, or built up, and there was scope to be inventive, which is why school clubs and cadet or cubs or scouts groups found it popular.

I do think from personal experience with my own children's local cubs and scouts that they can still get hooked on aeromodelling with the likes of gliders and RTP models, as they love something that stimulates them and can be competitive and fun too.

13/07/2017 12:49:49

One everlasting memory I have from flying RTP in my parents back garden when I was in my teens was the number of lost props from motors as a result of mid air contact with other models instead of streamers when flying combat or when doing some racing against other family members. My dad was finding lost props for years afterwards in some of the borders, or shrubs or hedges.

Even my mum got in on the act of building and also designing models. She came up with a delta that flew quite well - certainly looked good covered in transparent solarfilm.

11/07/2017 22:49:21

On the subject of model magazine RTP plans. MAP published a magazine called Model Maker for about a year if I recall correctly about 1979 or 1980. One plan they did was for a RTP Autogyro. I built two of these and they flew beautifully. I just wish I still had the plan to build more.

11/07/2017 22:42:45

It does seem that some model clubs, ATC / Army Cadets, after school clubs or Scouts groups liked RTP. It is sad to see not that many get the opportunities for model flying these days. My sons Cub/Scout group when they found out my flying and model flying background all went after their badge. They all enjoyed building chuckie gliders having a go at RTP and going to Duxford.

10/07/2017 22:15:30

The model mags of the 70's and early 80's published a number of interesting designs from profile to scale models, ducted fan, autogyros, and some racing models. I think it was Aeromodeller had a fantastic profile Gee Bee racer that a couple of Elmbridge guys had tuned performance racing them at the Modelmakers Festival in 78 and I think in 79. It would be nice to track some of them down.

10/07/2017 21:03:52

With some of the other posts about after school and also ATC activities all were certainly popular clubs or etc that got youths into RTP. It would be good to see it happen nowadays, but as usual there ae many other distractions these days.

10/07/2017 21:01:12
Posted by KiwiKid on 10/07/2017 14:23:21:

I came upon this site a couple of months back when looking for something else - looks quite intriguing. I guess you could fly indoors when the weather was poo. **LINK**

Thanks for that, funnily enough I found the same site just before I read your post. I have had a look and yes this looks like they have taken over from Ballards and there are also some useful new items, kits and plans, so well worth a look for those into RTP.

10/07/2017 14:10:58

I thought I would start this thread off the back of a weekend of fun with my family flying electric round the pole models in the garden, and the realisation that I have been on and off for nearly 40 years now and got to thinking how many either still do, or have in the past, or what had become of RTP flying - certainly in the UK at least.

I first became aware of RTP flying as a boy when there was an article in a Keil Kraft catalogue about RTP and converting rubber models to RTP written by Harry Butler. I was intrigued at the time as I was into control line and just starting to develop an interest in rc.It was when in 77 that I went to the Model Engineer Exhibition and witnessed it for the first time and then at Sandown Model Symposium that I started to become interested. Nothing more happened until 1978 when I went to the Modelmakers Festival at Brean Sands where Harry Butler was demonstrating it and you could have a go, that I bought a profile Spitfire model, and built and flew it there, that myself and my dad became hooked, bought the gear to set us up and started flying models in our back garden and in halls with the model flying club and at some exhibitions and indoor events local to Hastings at the time.

So for most in Britain, it was Harry Butler (from Clacton as I recall) who managed to develop a range of products suitable for a commercial sale and led to the growth of the hobby. There were kits available and plans (some from Aeromodeller), and information on converting some of the rubber scale models for RTP. From memory it was about 1980 that Harry Butler then sold his rights to Keil Kraft who continued to promote RTP for a number of years. It was a while later that I learnt that Ballards in Tunbridge Wells then had acquired the rights and up until a few years ago you could still get RTP goods from them, but sadly I do not know what the situation is like in the UK now.

So what was RTP? Much like Scalextric you had a power source, a hand throttle to control the DC power. Power was fed out to the Tether Pole which supplied power via ballraces to thin tinned copper wire flying lines which served the double purpose of providing power to, and tethering the model plane. Models could be prop driven, ducted fan, or even autogyros. Models could carry some lighting, or have retractable undercarriage, flaps, or bomb release, and even be aerobatic (loops and wingovers) depending on model type/motor/flying line length. BUt some of the best fun was either flying combat - streamer (and sometimes tail!) cutting or racing (Gee Bee racer models were excellent).

Anyway it would be nice to see if others remember RTP, or fly still, or can add to the history or know what has become of it. Are my children the last generation of RTP pilots?

Thread: Whatever Happened To....
29/06/2017 13:10:40
Posted by gangster on 29/06/2017 10:26:23:

Yes Maurice I believe the plan showed both. ( the senior having a flat bottomed wing and the Custom a bit symmetrical. I don't seem to have the plan any more for either. I did find the plan for the corsair and the tiger. Both nice looking models. I sold my old Tiger that had been flown to death and fuel soaked for a very good price. The guy who bought converted it to a plug to make a glass fibre mold with a plan to making kits. Not sure he was not on sticky ground there copyright etc. The deal was as well as the price paid and the plan returned I was to get one of the kits from the first "litter". Alas the kits were never made. At least I got enough money for my clapped out old model to buy a kit of a different model


Ah yes your mention of the Corsair and Tiger models now remind me of them. I am not sure where Trueline were located but they did do a nice model range from my recollection of a few designs. If an 11 yo lad at the time can build one they were not too hard to build and looked good. My fathers Custom was Enya 40 powered with Futaba M series rc and mine was a Merco 35 (though I never did have good engine reliable running even with changing the Carburettor) with Skyleader Clubman (not the Super) rc. I reckon the Custom would make quite a reasonable electric model.

As a change of manufacturer how about EMP (Edmonds Model Products), my father built the Easy Rider which both he and myself flew. This model looked and flew nicely with Enya 40 power and had some years flying until the plastic fuselage failed around the former in front of the wing leading edge. It was a sad end to the model but the plastic obviously had become fatigued either through flying stresses or sunlight as I am not sure whether the plastic was uv stabilised but it did survive from about 78 until 1986 without any crashes.


Mind you one model I always wanted from Micro Mold was the Spitfire Mk24/Seafire Mk47. I never got hold of one though one of the guys got hold of a kit from a show second hand in the late 90's and it looked and flew beautifully.


Edited By Nightflyer 2013 on 29/06/2017 13:11:42

28/06/2017 22:00:15

One other model that was a massive influence on me was the MFA Hummingbird. I think that and the Magicfly were key to helping kick start electric flight in the UK. The Hummingbird certainly was for me. The performance was far from impressive but flight was possible, and when I look at the electric models i have and have had they all lead back to that Hummingbird of the early 80's.

28/06/2017 22:00:13

One other model that was a massive influence on me was the MFA Hummingbird. I think that and the Magicfly were key to helping kick start electric flight in the UK. The Hummingbird certainly was for me. The performance was far from impressive but flight was possible, and when I look at the electric models i have and have had they all lead back to that Hummingbird of the early 80's.

Thread: Cheap servos worth the risk?
28/06/2017 21:50:39

Some great comments which I would concur with. I have tended to favour Futaba or Savox where quality and reliability are concerned, or Hired or others when cheap is desirable. I am not wild on SD200s as had issues with them on an electric Hurricane and my Simprop Excel. They seem 8k at first but after time give trouble. Hs55 comments elsewhere on here I agree with comments on.

Thread: Lidl XL Glider
28/06/2017 19:32:37

I contacted Lidl to see if they will get more. They advised 3-6 months will be the next time.

Thread: Whatever Happened To....
28/06/2017 19:30:26

I did still have my plan but it is not in my plans file, from memory it does not give you the foam wing profile properly. Otherwise easy to knock up a wing.

Thread: Lidl XL Glider
27/06/2017 23:21:18

Martin your electrified model looks good might go similar way if I get a second model.

Thread: Whatever Happened To....
27/06/2017 23:17:26

The Tomtit did look nice. Regarding the Custom Executive mine got totalled as a result of a sudden cut on the Merco 35 and my dads as a result of aeronautics while learning but lovely looking model.

Mind you one model I loved also was Skyways Hawk 70.

27/06/2017 20:18:54

I am sure others like me have fond memories of some more and manufacturers that are no more. For me there are a few that inspired or were key to my early years...

As a young boy in the mid 70's my dad started off flying with a Truline Custom Executive, a 4 channel trainer. I liked it so much I pestered my dad to build one for me. I shall have to load a pic at some point. It was towards the late 70's that the manufacturer disappeared and I still wonder what happened to them.

Another model I loved as soon as I saw it was the Ripmax Aviette Moonshiner a lovely 40 size aerobatic hope which I ended up getting as a present on completing my O levels and still have today.

Then there was the Keil Kraft SE5a which really looked good and the Veron Avro 504K.

There must be loads of others too.

Thread: Wings and Wheels North Weald 2017
27/06/2017 13:15:34

Martin - I think you are right about fees. Some of the venues charge ridiculous fees it is what always affects so many events. Look at the Model Engineer Exhibition, Sandown, The Nats, etc. It is interesting that when some of these venues open they fight to attract events i.e. Sandown Park in the 70's, Wembley Conference Centre for the ME in the 70's and early 80's, etc. Trouble is once the venues start to grow or prove popular so venue managers start to get greedy when they know they have other alternatives open to them to fill their diary of events.

One must also remember that organisers have to cover the cost of the venue hire and if you have falling attendance numbers it is always going to pressure entry prices and traders pitch prices. I think a recent example might well be Brighton's Modelworld which in the end led to this years event being cancelled (hopefully only a very temporary loss).

Thread: Lidl XL Glider
27/06/2017 13:05:57

Hi Steve,

Yes it may be slightly different to the Lidl one. Well I flew the Lidl one last night - in fact my 14 yo son who wanted the glider flew it the most and tbh it flew better than I expected and certainly better than when it was a free flight glider. My son enjoyed it a lot. With two 9g servos a Lemon rx and a 1s 500mAh Lipo pack it seemed to balance just right.

Now I am thinking about tracking a second model down to electrify.

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