RC Airplane Parts for Dummies

Chapter 1: RC Airplane Parts

The RC airplane parts typically consist of: (see Fig.1 ( rc airplane parts ) , Fig.3a, Fig.3b)

a) Fuselage h) flaps (optional) o) Rx batteries
b) Wings i) Wheels p) Receiver (Rx)
c) Horizontal stabilizer j) Landing gear q) Push rods
d) Vertical stabilizer k) Engine r) Transmitter (TX)
e) Elevator l) Propeller s) TX batteries
f) Rudder m) Fueltank
g) Aileron n) Servos

FIGURE 1 : RC airplane parts

RC airplane parts

The fuselage is the main body of the rc airplane. It serves as a housing of the internal components and holds together the outer parts. Obviously the wings is what makes the rc model airplane fly. This part supports the rc airplane in flight and the size, type, and location of the wing determines the flight characteristics of the rc airplane (see Chapter 2). The aileron located at the trailing edge (see Fig. 1) of the wing is what controls the longitudinal axis or the rolling motion of the wing. It also controls the rc airplane’s direction by means of banking the wing either in the left or right direction. Flaps is sometimes added to increase the lift of the wing and to reduce the runway distance on take-off.

The horizontal stabilizer is usually located at the tail of the aircraft. It serves to stabilize it in the lateral axis or to counter act the up and down motion of the aircraft (or pitch). The elevator is attached to the horizontal stabilizer. It controls the up and down motion (or pitch). The vertical stabilizer is also located at the tail and perpendicular to the horizontal stabilizer. It stabilizes the aircraft in the vertical axis. The rudder is attached to the vertical stab, which control the rc airplane in the vertical axis. This mechanism is usually found in full size aircraft but optional in model aircraft. The landing gear along with the wheels supports the aircraft on the ground. The two common types are tricycle and the tail dragger (see Fig 2).

FIGURE 2 : Two basic types of landing gear

Two basic types of landing gear

The engine, propeller and fuel tank is called the powerplant. It generates the thrust to support the aircraft in flight. The engine is located usually in the front of the aircraft and drives the propeller to generate thrust. The fuel tank holds the fuel and usually located behind the engine. The radio equipment (see Fig.3a) includes the following: servos, receiver (Rx), and Rx batteries, transmitter (TX). The servos are located inside the rc airplane and serves as actuators. They produce the needed force to control the rc airplane. The pushrods are connected to the servos to transmit the force generated by the servos to the control surfaces of the rc airplane. The receiver is connected to the servos, which transmit the signal from the transmitter. The transmitter, although not attached to the aircraft itself, is also part of the aircraft. That is why it
is called remote controlled. It transmits signals from the control input of the RC pilot. Of course, the receiver and the transmitter to transmit and receive electrical signals need batteries (see Fig. 3b).

FIGURE 3a : Three-channel radio controlled rc airplane components

3 channel radio components

FIGURE 3b : Typical four-channel radio control layout and components

RC airplane parts

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