Radio Control

The first contest for Radio Control model airplanes was in 1937; however, it was not until the 1970s that this form of aeromodeling became popular.
In this portion of the gallery, visitors can see how radio control has developed from the first rudder-only models to pylon racers, aerobatic models, and helicopters. 

Elmer Wasman placed third with this airplane, the White Mystery, at the first radio control contest in 1937.

 

Along the east wall is a collection of Radio Control systems that have significantly changed since the first contest in 1937. The early vacuum tube radios are very different from the much smaller and more reliable modern computer and spread spectrum radios.

The first truly successful Radio Control airplane was the Big Guff, built in 1938 by the Good brothers, Walt and Bill.

 

This case contains a reproduction of the radio transmitter and receiver used by the Good brothers to fly the Guff.

This portion of the exhibit traces the history of pylon racing.

As soon as full-scale jets began flying, modelers attempted to make reproductions. At first, the model aircraft looked like jets but had propellers, and then the idea of a ducted fan became popular. Today, many jet modelers use miniature turbine engines to power their aircraft.

        

These aircraft are Park Flyers, smaller and lighter electric powered models that have become very popular over the last few years.

These are radio control aerobatic or pattern aircraft. 

Another type of aeromodeling activity is radio-controlled skydiving. These skydivers are released from a radio control airplane, and the modeler actually operates their arms to control the parachute,  just like full-scale skydivers. 

This is a sample of some of the radio-controlled helicopters on display.

Return to virtual museum tour map.