Electric Power & R/C Controls

Welcome to the future! Here you’ll find stuff about the amps, watts and volts of electrically powered and R/C controlled carrier flying.

Click HERE to try the following video for a “cheap as chips” look at hybrid C/L plus R/C flying

Interestingly, the US builder has downgraded his Parkzone R/C Spitfire and F4 Phantom models to run C/L elevator control while retaining radio throttle. It seems to work after a fashion – what do you think? (The Phantom is a lovely-looking model but needs an afterburner for sure!). I particularly like the twisted fence-wire leadouts…

 Is the introduction of electrical power to carrier-deck a reVOLTing idea? Maybe so to the die-hard, fly-hard traditionalists in the C/L fraternity, but it’s been around for many years, it’s expanding thanks to the much-improved LI-PO batteries we can now buy and changes to the competition rules in America, and as in everything, the technology can’t be un-invented!

Judging from the success that electrically-powered models are having in every other branch of aeromodelling we would be unwise to ignore the possibilities, especially when it removes the need for starters, buying/storing nitro fuel and setting up Perry carbs (sorry, they’re my favourite topic at the moment for a good rant), so let’s get with it!

On the R/C control side, the American Modellers Association is going ahead with a ruling that allows “on air” R/C control of all functions of a Navy Carrier model except the elevator. There has always been the option of passing radio signals down the wires controlled via potentiometers or switches on the handle (as per Jim Walker and Clancy Arnold’s innovations)

Clancy Arnold’s
original multi-functional handle for his P38
Scalemaster – the
Bugatti Veyron of handles!
Jim Walker U-Reely
handle for Fireball sparkie engine control


More recently, Jan Odeyn (the carrier deck master flier from Belgium) has had a lot of success with his modern approach to electronic control of electric power motors via the lines. Jan says: “(…the pictures below show…) how I control my electric motors in carrier. As I don’t know anything about electronics I guess anyone can make it. I use one handle for all my models. You need a ferrite ring near the speed controller as the lines work as an antenna and will take up other signals and will disturb the signal”. Jan has very generously provided the layout below to show what can be done in this way.


If the European carrier scene takes up the US AMA proposal to allow R/C to be used “on air” for all non-elevator controls, then further developments along the lines (!) that Joe Just has used in one of his C-D Wildcat kits will soon appear here. This approach opens up the possibility of using ultra-cheap R/C kit via a TX on the belt or hung round the pilot’s neck to remove the need for a third line, special bellcranks and complex mechanical linkages. OK, there will be a learning curve, but it offers many new possibilities at comparatively low cost 


So what do YOU think? As always, your contributions are welcome – please mail to flyco@carrier-deck.com. In the meantime, spare a thought for what the poor old models themselves are going to think about it all!