Beginner RC planes

Well, looks like a new hobby may bud... Always wanted an RC jet, but when I was a kid they were very expensive so I ended up with an electric off road racing buggy.

Anyways, I am all grown up with my own cash flow and it seems there are some good budget offerings now. Got a few I am looking at that seem to get good reviews and be fairly easy to fly.

Been looking at these:

UMX Habu 180

UMX MiG 15

UMX Sbach 342

and looking at this remote

Anyone have any experience with these micro planes? Should I be looking at another brand besides E-Flight? Do not know nothing about RC planes, but I like how these look and seem to be quality for the price

Does this mean that there will be strange lights seen in the sky in your location? :bigsmile:

After a brief brush with rockets (small) I’d stick to ground based R/C ing if I was going to get back into it.
Slope soarers can be fun but can be very short flight and a week to repair - ask me how I know. :frowning:

I just want a gas car of some sort maybe a Baja Bug or something similar …………… Oh hell another way to spend money!!

The micros aren’t the best to start with. They break easily and aren’t as easy to repair. I would start with a foam cub of some sort. It is easy to glue foamies back together and the cubs are one of the easiest planes to fly as they are high wing and very stable. The Spektrum DX5E is a good raido. A lot of people go with them as most of the planes that come from E-flite can be bought bind and fly so all you need it a Spektrum radio and you are good to go.

I had a mig foamie and they don’t fly that great. They stall out and it was hard to bank with it. You had to take a slow turn or it would start dropping in the turn if you turned to hard. Plus you have to keep the speed up or it basically wants to fall out of the air.

This is what I would suggest to get started.


Or possibly this trainer. I started on a trainer and now fly 3D Hobby Shop Edge 540 as it can do 3D.


Here is a video of me flying my 48” 3DHS Edge.

So the e-flight planes are good? I have been leaning towards the Sbach I linked, even though I wanted a jet originally.

So what is 3d flying anyway, basically stunt flying?

I would like to get a better controller than I linked, but it's all that I can afford. I know if I really get into it I will end up buying another eventually

Yea, E-flite makes ok planes to start out with. I knew a guy who had a Parkzone Habu and it was pretty fast. Parkzone makes good planes too. I had one of their Mustang P51-D’s and crashed the crap out of it and would just glue it back together and keep flying. Plus you can buy new bodies for cheap if it gets to the point where it is so full of glue it won’t fly right anymore which is the problem I ended up having with my Mustang. The Spektrum DX6i would probably be better as if you want to get into heli’s then you have a 6 channel capable radio already. You could even surf ebay and pick up a used radio for cheap. I have a Futaba 6EX and it works for me. It doesn’t have all the features I would like but it works. The Spektrum radios would probably be better though as like I said, a lot of planes come B-N-F with a Spektrum receiver(rx) so you can bind it straight to your controller. Also, you can program different profiles for more than one plane on them. The profiles remember the trims and settings so you don’t have to change the trim every time you change planes if you get into it like that. Another thing to look into is a flying wing. I have one and it is fun to fly. Plus you can make them fast and they are made out of foam and easy to repair.

As for 3D, it is just doing stunts like in the video. You can do rolling harriers, hover, knife edge, waterfalls, and much more. They are just so fun but you have to get used to flying first. Another thing I suggest getting is a RC simulator to practice on. It will save you from having to fix stuff all the time lol. If you go to Hobby King, you can get a simulator for $15-$25. I have the one that works with my radio and it came with a DVD that had a few different older simulator programs on it like RealFlight G5 and PheonixRC. Hobby King also has lipo batteries for really cheap. I have a bunch of the 3S 2200mah packs. They also have nice chargers for cheap. I have a Hobby King Quattro 4x6 that can individually charge 4 packs at a time. But yea, let me know if there is anything else you need to know or anything. I haven’t flown in about 6 months or so but still have all my stuff. I need to get a job so I can afford all my hobbies lol.

Been flying since I was 10, and there is nooooo way id start with those micros or jets either :slight_smile:

I have been thinking about getting my brother into it, and I think the cheapest way is something like this:\_*433191*\_Planes_Parts-Beginner_Trainer.html

Gliders fly sooooo slow so you have time to correct your mistakes. Being a pusher prop it wont break the prop on landing, which even folders do, and its repairable with foam safe CA for probably 10 or 20 crashes. I fly mainly foamies now because theyre dirt cheap and super easy to fix and modify. One day when I get a piece of land big enough, ill get back into bigger ones etc.

That would get you started anyway.

The dx5e is ok, I have a dx8 and a dx4 that came with a rtf kit which cost almost nothing, and a few old 72 mhz futaba computer radios etc.

The ones that come with the hobbyking kits are fine. Ive had one similar for probably 5 years and it never skipped a beat. Although my futaba is 20+ years old and still works perfect too.

If I was going to buy a radio to start off with, dx8 is awesome, dx7s is just as good but often you can find the dx8 cheaper, and the dx6i is what I would buy as a minimum, because you can save 10 models on it, the dx5e can only save the one. A PITA to re set up everytime etc once you get into it.

I also use these receivers which have flown great for the 2 flights so far haha

If that helps!


The only thing that sucks with glider is that they are slow responding. I had problems when I first flew one and was still fairly new at flying. I would give it too much one way and when it finally went it was to late to try and get it going back.

Another thing is to find a hobby shop near you and have someone help you setup your radio (expo and things like that) so that you are pretty much ready to go when you finally get out to fly.

I am not into RC planes but in my place the Sbach 342 is very well-loved for its performance in aerobatics.

Times have changed so much, I’m not sure what I would recommend (other than something larger that a micro). I started with a .40 size Midwest Aerostar (about a 4’ wingspan) many years ago. Once I got that down I advance into the faster, less stable, more aerobatic stuff.

If you are looking for a trainer, look for something with a flat bottom wing and a reasonable amount of dihedral (slight wing upward angle). Unlike a car or boat, there is no pause button with planes and crashes are inevitable, so get something easily repairable and lightweight for it’s size.

The best way to learn is to get someone with experience to get the plane off the ground and up to about 2 mistakes high, take over getting the hang of it, and be able to hand it back over if it gets out of control.


I’ve just got back into RC flying this year from about a 15 year absence.

The planes you link too are very good but if I’m honest are quite advanced unless you can already fly.

The Sbach is highly responsive and very much a stunt plane and not for a beginner. And with the duct fan Jets you really need to fly them, as in mistakes and slow flying are not what they favour.

If you can already fly, then these would be fine. However if you’ve never flown before I think you’ll find these a real mistake and just end up binning the broken pieces.

You can buy USB simulators off ebay cheap, these are quite good for learning the basics, although nothing actually beats real flying.

For a first plane something like this is ideal (I have one):

This is a 3 channel trainer. It’s easy to fly, but also a lot of fun to try. Once you have mastered the basics you need to learn 4 channel.

Something like this would be a good step up:

Once you can fly these proficiently then the ones you’ve linked would be worth looking at.

Personally I love the Micro series of RC planes, so much more usable than larger ones as you can fly in so many more places. Plus they are cheap, cheap to repair and easy to maintain.

The only downside is you do need quite a calm day to fly. Being lighter they don’t handle wind as well as larger models.

Remember if you are starting out, you’ll need everything. The Hobbyzone Champ comes as a RTF (ready to fly). Which means you get the plane, the batteries, charger and a transmitter.

I don’t think the Efite come as RTF, so you’ll need a transmitter. Personally a good digital transmitter is well worth the money, like a DX6i or better.

This is a good place for more info on RC planes:

I think I am going to go with the Champ RTF kit. Easy to get into. Has remote, batteries, charger and plane is completely built. If it is something I get into, I can save up and get a nice controller, and other BNF planes.

I dont think any of the E-Flights come with a controller. I really want to hold off on buying an expensive remote until I find out if its something I really like

Thanks guys for all the help!!

I think that is a great choice. Good luck and hopefully you have fun.

The Champ is definitely not the looker that the Sbach is, but would probably smash it up. And the the complete Champ kit is cheaper that just the Sbach plane. Was looking at some larger planes, but the micros are just more interesting and will be a better fit for me right now I think.

My dad bought my sister a yellow balsa wood nitro plane kit years and years ago that never got put together. Maybe if I get into this I can snag that up anb put it together

$97.98 shipped to my door for a complete RTF Champ kit. Can not wait! 8)

My first plane was head-first into the deep end with a Rarebear Funfighter.

A similar head-first experience ensued.
Super easy to fix foamies though.

Hope you enjoy the Champ, it’s a great place to start. Plenty of spares and very easy to repair. Get yourself some foam safe glue and you’ll be set.

My bro accidentally crashed my Champ and tore a wing off. Glued it back on in 5 mins and it flies like new. Larger planes you just wouldn’t get away with this.

When you are ready the Sbach will be a very nice upgrade.

Just so you know, Eflite and Parkzone are Hobbyzone companies/brands. So the Champ is quite closely related.

I kind of figured they all were like "house brand" type deals. From the looks of it, the Champ comes with a 4 channel radio too, so if I need to I could get away with not getting a new one until I can afford the one I want. I really wanted something faster and cooler looking, but I guess that's like giving a Lamborghini to a 16 year old.

Looks like it will be here next Tuesday... can not wait

If you are new to flying I think you’ll be amazed at how quickly the Champ can cover the sky in front of you. And how quickly things can go wrong :wink:

Let us know how you get on with your maiden flight.

Want me to have my fiance record the carnage? S)
I will be sure to let you guys know how I make out for the first flight.

I have two 500 mah lipo cells sitting here that I am wondering if I can mod into the Champ for some extended flight time… Horrible aint it. First plane, have not even got it, and already thinking about modding it…

If it’s on it’s way…then go with it. It’s a fine trainer.
It’s light, crashes ‘lightly’ (saving some grief often) BUT it does have some issues, but then EVERYTHING does.

Being light it blows away in ANY wind. You need DEAD CALM conditions. This is critical starting out. This it the main problem in those areas with constant wind.
For your first flight you need LOTS and LOTS of clear space. Any tree within a 1/4 mile will reach out and grab it, guaranteed.
ALL the components are ‘disposable’. It’s a good one trick trainer that is not worth modding and has nothing much worth keeping if you like the sport, but MANY trainers are that way. You can easily spend 2x that amount on a decent transmitter alone. A good kit with stuff worth keeping would set you back about $500. OTOH you WILL trash your first (2nd, 3rd maybe) planes if you don’t get some help/instruction. So, cheap ain’t bad to start since so many people go it alone now. An experienced flier with a buddy box is the best instruction route but you can’t do that with the Champ.

Like this group for lights there are far better places to take this discussion:

There’s way more to learn about RC flying than lights. Staying away from jets until you can fly WELL is one important lesson. You have 2-3 steps (planes :stuck_out_tongue: ) to go once you master the Champ. It’s not a cheap sport even if it looks that way to start.