Learn some basic RC airplane aerobatics
How to fly it: The inside loop:
Start by flying straight and level into wind, no lower than, say, 50ft/15m high.
Open the throttle to full power and, at point A in the picture above, pull back on the elevator stick to start a climb – not too suddenly, be gentle but definite. Keep the power on. The airplane will go into a vertical climb, let it keep going until it starts to roll over onto its back – point B in the picture. At this point, close the throttle and keep holding the elevator stick back, adjusting it as necessary to maintain a tidy path. You might also need to use ailerons/rudder to keep the path of the loop as vertical as possible.
At point C in the picture, level out the airplane by returning elevator to neutral and increase power to exit the loop, flying straight and level again.
The outside loop:
The outside loop, also called a bunt, is an inside loop but with the airplane inverted i.e. the top of the plane faces outwards.
Method 1: Your airplane must be inverted (i.e. rolled through 180 degrees) at the start of the loop (point ‘A’ in the picture). The danger here is to remember to use down elevator to get the airplane to climb. Accidentally applying up elevator at this point will send the airplane crashing in to the ground!
Keep holding in down elevator and let the airplane do a full loop. At the top of the outside loop (point ‘B’), your airplane will be right side up. Reduce power and continue the loop back down towards the ground and at point ‘C’ roll through 180 degrees to bring the airplane right side up to exit the maneuver.
Method 2: An outside loop can also be started from the top (point B in the above picture), by flying straight and level at a good altitude and applying and holding in down elevator all the way round the loop. You need to reduce power at the start of the dive until the bottom, then increase to full power to complete the second half of the loop.
The stall turn:
The stall turn, also called a hammerhead turn, makes use of the airplane’s rudder and is a relatively simple maneuver to perform
The aim of the stall turn is to perform a vertical climb, reduce power at the top to stall the plane, while simultaneously applying full rudder to rotate the plane through 180° about its CG position, or thereabouts.
How to fly it: As before, begin with a straight and level flight path. At point A in the picture above, apply full power and up elevator, putting the airplane into a vertical climb. Adjust the rudder and elevator as necessary to maintain the climb as vertically and as straight as possible, without going into the beginnings of a loop i.e. don’t keep holding in up elevator.
Let it climb for a few seconds (depending on how much power you have to hand*) and then, at point B, reduce throttle** and – here’s the important part – apply full rudder to the left or right. If the airplane doesn’t look like it’s going to turn neatly, give the throttle a small blip to get some prop wash (air movement) over the rudder.
Once the airplane has spun round through 180° and is facing the ground, return the rudder to neutral and let the airplane go naturally into a brief vertical dive for a second or so. Then, at point C, apply both motor power and up elevator to pull out of the dive and resume straight and level flying.
*How long you climb for will largely be determined by how much power you have – less powerful planes will just run out of steam after a few seconds of climbing vertically, whereas planes with unlimited power can keep on going – in which case, limit your climb to no more than three or four seconds.
**How much you reduce throttle, at the turn, depends on a few things, not least of which is the type of plane and size of rudder. You shouldn’t cut the motor right back, because you need some prop wash (i.e. airflow) over the rudder to facilitate the turn. Only experience and practice will tell you how much power you need at the turn.