The Flite Test Beginner Series is brought to you by Horizon Hobby.
Episode 9: Crashing and Repairing
The most common things you’ll experience from a crash are:
- Bent shaft
- Motor angle / firewall cracked
- Dirt in motor
- Stripped servos
- Loose control horn, wires or prop
- Stressed, bent or broken prop
- Broken or crinkled fuselage
- Damaged Battery (very dangerous)
What to do if you crash:
First off, remain calm. Remember, everyone crashes. After you crash, check your C.R.A.P.
Control surfaces - Pull on everything, make sure everything is secure and moves properly.
Rips and tears - Examine the body of your plane closely looking for rips, tears or crinkles.
Angles - Look for structural weaknesses. Check the angle of your tail and make sure it’s not crooked. Make sure angles of repaired area are the same as before the crash. Even if it is not a control surface.
Power system - Check all electronic connections and make sure everything works. Turn the motor by hand and make sure it turns freely.
Let’s talk about what to do for each of these issues:
The vibration can negatively affect your plane’s performance
It’s rare you can bend it back straight.
It’s best to replace it or swap the whole motor
Motor angle / firewall cracked
Can usually be fixed with some hot glue or CA
Remove the motor repair and reinstall
Dirt in motor
You’ll notice when you turn the motor by hand.
Remove the bell and clean it out
Loose control horn, wires or prop
Tighten or repair
Stressed, bent or broken prop
Broken or crinkled fuselage
Repair with hot glue, tape, or foam safe CA.
Use hot water to bring it back to shape
More glue does not mean more strength. Thin even glue over a tight joint is GOOD!
Damaged Battery (very dangerous)
Get rid of it!… Recycle
If you're not sure if it’s damaged check individual cell voltages frequently.
If your aircraft is manufactured by a reputable manufacturer, common replacement parts can easily be purchased at your local hobby shop. Always try to carry extra props for your plane!
Crash Prevention: Things that cause a CRASH
Neglecting your preflight check (see Ep. 4: Launching and Landing)
Flying a plane beyond your ability (see Ep. 1 Choosing a Plane)
Getting distracted / Looking away
Flying out of range / getting disoriented
Flying close or behind to objects
Too small of a flying field
Most of all, don’t be afraid to fix you plane. Be creative with your repairs. Keep your repairs simple. Damaged areas can often be covered with strategic decoration. If it flies… you did it right! Remember: crashing is just part of the hobby.