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Choosing Your Model

The Phoenix Range of model aircraft have been designed by Stan Yeo and are the culmination of many years experience both as a modeller and an engineer. Stan has enjoyed success at National and local level including RAFMAA. He has also had a number of designs published and is a regular contributor to the modelling press with articles on all aspects of model flying.

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An aircraft engineer by profession and a qualified full sized glider pilot. Stan has a sound grasp of aerodynamics and believes it is better to make a good job of something simple than a mediocre job of something difficult. This and his unwillingness to compromise a design, or the quality of materials, simply to cut costs are your guarantee of satisfaction.

The following notes are designed to help you choose the model most suitable for you. If you know which model interests you or just wish to browse our selection simply click the navigation buttons in the left margin of this page. To aid in your choice each model is categorised by its potential performance. Category 1 models are suitable for novice pilots i.e. modellers who have little or no experience and those modellers who have only flown light wind rudder elevator models on the slope. Category 6 & 7 models are suitable for experienced pilots i.e. those that can fly competently in most conditions.

If you have limited slope flying experience and are looking to make a quick transition to flying aileron models then it is recommended that you build a Stage 2 rudder elevator model and purchase the aileron wing kit. This way you hone your basic slope flying skills on a rudder elevator trainer and for a minimum investment in time and money convert to ailerons when the time is right. This is a cautious approach but to be a good slope flyer in all conditions there are certain aspects of slope flying that need to be instinctive such as in-flight planning of manoeuvres and correct control inputs in difficult situations. Aileron models are more responsive, less stable and more manoeuvrable and are as a consequence more demanding to fly. This means that the inexperienced pilot is put under a lot more pressure and is unlikely to get the same enjoyment from flying or make the same progress.

Once you have graduated onto aileron models there are a number of Category 2/3 models to choose from. Each is slightly different in looks, performance and, dare we say it, durability. If you are operating from rough, rocky slopes and have limited experience then a conventional or vee tail layout is recommended for repairability. All models have viceless handling characteristics if built and set up as per plan but some are quicker than others which means the 'thinking' time is going to be shorter. All except the Stage 2 are recommended as a suitable 2nd aileron model.

For those that wish to graduate onto fully aerobatic models there are currently four to choose from. All feature a fully or near (Sierra Ghia) symmetrical section that is so essential for good inverted performance. If do you decide to build a model with a symmetrical section please remember that the model will require better lift conditions in order to realise its full potential. Our recommendation is that a Category 2/3/4 model is also taken along to flying sessions so that should the conditions not be ideal the second model can be flown. There is no point in stooging around, trying to stay up, with a fully aerobatic aeroplane if a semi-symmetrical sectioned model could be flown more successfully.

The fun category (Category 7) is reserved for small highly responsive aerobatic models suitable for the more experienced flyer. An exception to this are the Wingbats which are easy to fly as an aileron trainer. The reason these are classed as fun models is due to their unique shape which could lead to model orientation problems.

Model Classifications

1 Rudder/Elevator Trainers

2 Aileron Trainers

3 Sport Aerobatic Models

4 Pylon Racers

5 Fully Aerobatic Trainers

6 Advanced Aerobatic Models

7 Fun Models

8 Slope / Thermal Models