Acerbic Resonance

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Fly An R/C Plane At Night? Am I Crazy?

Anyone who has ever tried to fly a remote controlled plane will tell you that it is tricky.  They can be squirrely in the air, drastically affected by the lightest of breezes, it’s very easy to get the controls all mixed up, and you will crash – a lot.

I’ve been flying for about a year now, and my Super Cub is still alive.  I’ve flown it in all sorts of weather conditions:  on perfectly calm days, in the rain, in the snow, in winds in excess of 30 mph (almost lost it that day), in the bitter cold, in the heat of summer. However, I’ve always flown during daylight.

Today, I flew at night.

I attached 4 of these to the underside of my wings, pointing at the fuselage:

Here’s a little video I did of how my maiden night flight turned out:


And here’s a link to more details on the lights and a video of the plane flying at night as seen from the ground:

How To Replace Batteries On Keychain LED Flashlights


5 responses to “Fly An R/C Plane At Night? Am I Crazy?”

  1. I’m thinking about doing this to my T-28, but I’m a little worried that I won’t get the illumination I need since it’s a low-wing plane. I’ll probably have to put lights below *and* above the wings to light it up. What do you think?

  2. Yeah, I think that with the T-28 I’d probably just put the lights on the upper side of the wing – using the same configuration that I did with 2 on each wingtip, one pointed at the cockpit area, one at the tail. The most important thing to light up is the profile view of the fuselage, and this configuration should work well.

    The foam of the wing on my cub was translucent enough that even from above the plane you can see the lights glowing through the wings, so it was still easy to track orientation of the plane.

    I’d love to hear about it if you give it a whirl!

  3. I just ordered the LED keychains. I’ll let you know how my first night flight goes.

    1. Awesome! I can’t wait to see the results. 🙂

  4. planedriver Avatar

    I would get for blinking lights a joggers strap on led,
    I flew 40 size trainers at night with it on the belly for the rotating beacon and wheat lamps in the wing bays with translucent monokote red/green and even had landing lights on the low wing. also had one small lamp on the vertical stab. it was fun. All this is good as long as it’s not too much weight for the cub.

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