A Brief History of The London RC Project
by BrotherBloat

I started my adventure with RC flying in April 2009. Me and my friends were on a car trip to the sunny beaches of Brighton (sigh, require more sun!) and were held up by the morning rain. We ended up in ModelZone and thought: what the heck - let's have a couple of cheapo RC helis!

The weather got better and we gave them a shot - they were awesome fun, although one of them had a fault and ended up exchanged for an X-Twin micro jet. Gosh - that was a horrible little plane! Or at least that is what I thought, being a complete newbie! Soon the X-Twin ended up in the sea and the heli met its destiny with both concentric prop shafts broken on a tile floor!

Ryleh and I decided not to waste another week without flying - we were already hooked. We threw ourselves in by buying the Phase3 J3 Piper Cub, a brushed 750g 'monster' at the time! Assured that it was a perfect trainer by the shop assistant, we went off to Richmond park and had a go in the late afternoon! It was an adventure!

Upon arriving at Richmond park, we decided to give the Cub a spin and, completely unaware of the nearby RC flying field, proceeded to maiden it form a public footpath. Mind you, it was really late on a Sunday afternoon and the park was completely empty, except for a bunch of friendly passers-by, who were seemingly slightly intoxicated and found the whole concept of RC flying vastly interesting!

Once they cleared the make-shift air strip, we were ready to take off! The flight plan was simple: RoG take-off (holy smokes, was the undercarriage dreadful!), attempt to miss the looming tree on the right and immediately bring it down on the same footpath. We were unaware of the fact that for most planes, the procedure and forces involved in the take-off manoeuvre are rather different to those involved in the landing... It's really quite hard for a newbie to execute a take-off-to-landing stunt with a 750g tail-dragger on a rather uneven asphalt-pebble surface! ;-) All in all, we managed to lift off, do a controlled crash landing, rinse and repeat...

After this rather exciting half-hour, we returned in high spirits, extremely happy that nothing was broken and that we managed to even lift off at all! That was it. We were hooked for life. What we thought we knew before became very clear then - we were going to make RC our main hobby and try to promote it on all fronts: work, home, friends, social networks, etc. We gradually started gathering all the required resources to make our RC flying more of a reality and less of a dream. Thanks to the RCGroups forum, YouTube and other on-line resources, we started getting the knack of the way of the fixed-wing and enjoying it more and more...