Let your kids’ imagination take to the skies with a radio controlled (RC) plane! It may mean they’ll have their heads in the clouds—but they’ll also be reaping a rake of rewards down here on Earth.
Piloting RC planes boosts concentration, strengthens hand-eye coordination and tests risk assessment. What’s more, constructing, adapting and repairing the aircraft will challenge kids’ creativity, mathematics and problem-solving abilities. They’ll also learn all about electronics, mechanics and flight dynamics—even getting direct experience with complex ideas like torque and lift. More than any of that, though, there’s no greater fun than pulling on your pilot goggles and taking flight!
With tons of RC planes on the market, it can be tough to choose the right one. Here are our top picks for any budget.
If you’re looking for a quality mid-range beginner plane, look no further. The award-winning HobbyZone Sports Cub S is a fantastic ready-to-fly high-wing plane. Its 4-channel movement gives you complete control of the throttle, rudder, elevator and ailerons. HobbyZone’s Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope (SAFE) controls offer different levels of semi-automatic assistance (beginner, intermediate and advanced). This helps amateur aviators gradually master flying—even in windy conditions. What’s more, if things get hairy up there, you can just pull the Panic Recovery trigger to switch on autopilot and return to a steady flight. Get in the zone!
Size: 616 x 414mm
The GoolRC F-949 is sure to get your head spinning! An imitation Cessna 182, this fun flyer has three channel controls and an impressive 200m range. As a high-wing model, it is more stable in the air and the batteries should last for about 20 minutes of flight. It’s powerful enough to do some cool manoeuvres and its durable foam build should be able to take most crash landings. All in all, it’s a great option for endless hours of in-flight entertainment!
Size: 500 x 393mm
Who needs wheels when you glide like this? The WL Toys F-959 Sky King is a fast-moving, smooth-flying RC glider. This 3-channel beauty is made of impact-resistant EPO and its motor is located in a protected position for most typical crashes. Flying straight out of your hand and touching down safely with or without grace, it’s great for beginners. The sky is the limit with this awesome ready-to-fly RC!
Size: 750 x 565mm
This little legend takes the idea of ‘light aircraft’ to the next level! The ParkZone Night Vapor is unique in design, with a lightweight frame and LED lights for night-time or low-light flying. Its slow flying speed makes it an ideal first plane—but experienced aeronauts will have tons of fun with it, too. Featuring 3-channel control (elevator, rudder and throttle), it really is a blast to pilot. Happy flying, day or night!
Size: 493 x 396mm
Go from apprentice to expert with this phenomenal beginner aircraft. The E-Flite Apprentice S 15e has earned rave reviews from newbies and experts alike. A large, slow-flying high-winged plane, complete with SAFE technology, it moves smoothly and can handle winds very well. Thick-skinned in its Z-foam, it can handle a bumpy ride. It looks the part, too, with an attractive red, black and gray design. In fact, I’m going to go out on a wing and say that this may be the best trainer RC out there! Highly recommended.
Size: 1054 x 483mm
Over to you! What do you think about our list of RC planes? Did we leave out any of your favorites RC planes? Or have you got anything to add about any of these awesome options? Let us know in the comments section below.
Feature image courtesy of Flickr, Tony Webster.
Source: Fractus Learning