RC Hobbyists Are More Than Just Boys With Toys
By Michelle Ochsner
Radio-controlled hobbies have burst forth as men from all walks of life come together for nothing but one commonality; to play with big boy toys. Hopeful of ideal conditions, these hobbyists congregate together for nothing else but the sport of it.
In 1898 Nikola Tesla acquainted the world to the radio control at the first Electrical Exhibition in Madison Square Garden. Tesla demonstrated his “Method of and Apparatus for Controlling Mechanism of Moving Vessels or Vehicles” with an R/C boat and was granted a patent in 1898 for his magnificent invention.
After WWII numerous R/C designs became available commercially for those interested in the hobby. Radio-controlled entertainment includes airplanes, helicopters, cars, trucks, boats, and many more models. The hobbyist can build their model of choice or buy factory finished, fit to immediately entertain.
R/C models have vastly improved with the first aircraft of its kind on display at the National Aerospace Museum. Today, radio-controlled airplanes and cars are known as ingenious weaponry conducive to the military and an exclusive novelty with regard to hobbyists.
In most cases, hobbyist starts with cars and trucks. Without having to fight with gravity or weather, these are the easiest models to learn basic radio control. However, there is nothing like piloting your very own airplane.
Whichever model you decide, the key to becoming an R/C connoisseur is patience! One must understand how a plane or helicopter flies, how a boat glides on the water, the difference between on-road and off-road R/C auto’s. These models are lifelike to scale with working mechanical parts. It’s essential to know how to tinker or fix them when they crash and it’s necessary to have an aptitude for repairing things, especially while learning the craft. It’s imperative to accept the fact that things go wrong.
Becoming a member of a club or getting involved with a venue opens up opportunities to learn from the experts and will save you valuable time and money as well as unwanted frustration. Radio control recreation is neither easy nor cheap. From beginner to expert, taking part in an R/C club is a great way to meet other like-minded enthusiasts.
The best way to get started is to find an instructor affiliated with a club or local venue. Local hobby stores like Action Hobbies in Meridian and Hobby Town in Boise have updated news and information about R/C instructors, clubs and venues.