Learning to Fly
Flying model aircraft is a lot of fun, but does need to be taken seriously to keep it safe. Learning to do it is a bit like learning to drive – it can be hard at first, but keep practising and you’ll gain ability and confidence.
This article assumes you are interested in powered fixed-wing flight. We do have helicopter and multirotor pilots in the club, but at the moment we don’t have anyone available to instruct on these types.
The first thing you should do, before you spend any money, is to get in touch with your local model flying club. If you’re reading this then potentially CAMFC is your local club – there is usually someone at the flying field from 14:00 on most Sundays (weather permitting). Come down and talk to people and see what happens at the field, and if you let us know that you’re coming in advance, we may even be able to arrange to let you have a flight on a club training aircraft. If you’re not sure what to buy, or even if you think you know, come and have a chat and we’ll try to help.
You will want to join a club in order to learn to fly. Flying at a club provides a safe space, with experienced instructors and lots of advice and help available as you learn everything about the hobby (there’s a lot more to it than just how to move the controls). Joining a club will also involve joining the BMFA, which provides many services but most importantly public liability insurance specifically for model aircraft activities.
Hopefully, you’re persuaded that it’s a good idea to join a club. That said, we’ve covered a few answers to some of the more common questions in the pages linked below. These aren’t hard and fast rules, just what we’d probably recommend if you came and asked our advice on a Sunday at the field. If you do want to try something different, it’s not necessarily wrong, but we would advise talking it through with an experienced modeller first, just so that you don’t end up having to buy twice!