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i have hummed and arghed about the winter build 2017, wasn't sure I wanted to face the total cost of it. I also looked in my workroom where there are three models half converted to leccy, and a canard near completion. So what to do? I seems to me, I really should finish off all of the pre mentioned before starting yet another model.

I know from reading posts on here that a lot of members have half finished stuff laying about. It can't be right, but it's not easy to resists the charms of a new baby is it? Anyway that's what I have set to be my goal. It nearly worked!

Out of the blue I started to look at RC boats. I know, I know, it's blasphemy, and I've fallen off of the straight and narrow. The shock came with the prices of the kits, at least twice that of a plane. But I have motors, servos TX's and batteries.

No I've not bought the kit, as I know nothing about boats really. I have found a local club, and am hoping to go along this Sunday to pick their brains, see what they do etc. Oh their membership is sooooo cheap. ( and they meet in a beautiful riverside pub once a month!) I swear I will try to finish the aircraft first, honest

I fully understand if I'm sent to Coventry by you guys, but remember I will be learning something new I.e. how do I get the ESC to reverse? Surely not a servo arm actuating a changeover switch. How do I retrieve my model from a lake bottom. I've done trees, rape seed, but never water as yet.

Finally, dare I ask, as any one on here built an RC boat?

Best wishes to all of you and a have a great 2017


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boats can be an interesting accompaniment to planes. I you may find you knowledge of rc systems may be a little better than some of the dedicated boat builders. I know quite a few modellers that enjoy both planes and boats and by no means are they not meant to be mixed,

Like planes boats can be separated into many categories so you will need to decide what interests you

there are scale, semi scale land sport models. and can be powered by electric, IC or even steam. but I would suggest electric is the best place to start.

you could buy a full kit or plans or start with a pre made fiberglass hull. I built a sea nymph from the vintage model boat company. their range is now available from SLEC

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As I'm asked here is a link to by fancied vessel( see how I'm already onto the nautical terms, shipmates) I'm sorry to paste the whole link, I couldn't see how to hide it beneath descriptive word.


Over the moon still being "talked to" by you good guys.

Taken on board (got it?) about a marine ESC. Who knew such a beast exsisted. I didn't!

Is there a BMFA for boats? A certification scheme? A lot to learn, if I decide to give it a crack. A major problem will admitting to the boss I'm now going to build boats as well as aircraft. Might just leave it till the new year eh.

Happy days.

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A few years ago, quite a few come to think of it, I needed a change. I looked at boat kits and was horrified atthe costs, especially the fittings kit.

In the end designed my Higgins 78ft PT boat. IT was a great experience and I was very pleased with it. It was actually published in Model Boats.

The trouble was that after blasting it round the ponds a few times I thought "Okay, So what else does it do? and the answer was "Not a lot"

Of course if one were to go in for steering competitions or Regattas it would be more interesting.

However the actual build was totally enjoyable and I loved it.pt boat.jpg

So I say go for it, it will refresh your enthusiasm for modelling

Edited By Peter Miller on 15/12/2016 18:49:25

Edited By Peter Miller on 15/12/2016 18:50:37

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Erm! I built a Vic Smeed designed boat(Moonglow) back in the early 70s while wife was in hospital with a Cipolla IC engine . (boat had the Cipolla, not wife!)Took it to local lake, waders on etc to find council had removed clay, water had drained so no boating. Still have boat, not sailed yet!

Working on the assumption that councils can't drain the sky (although some might want to!)

But variety is the spice of life - give it a go.

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If you fancy building a boat from a free plan then this website has the plans for various Keil Kraft boat plans. I think they are mainly balsa while the Sea Nymph etc from SLEC are mostly ply. Using balsa is easier to us aeromodellers, wrangling ply into curved shapes is a different art.

Peter's PT boat looks a very nice build and the plan should still be available from MyHobbyStores.

Glyn Guest did a series of boat plans which are mainly balsa too.

You need a special marine ESC ( reversing ) and they seem rarer and more expensive than aero ones!   HobbyKing sell them.



Edited By kc on 15/12/2016 19:54:08

Edited By kc on 15/12/2016 19:56:22

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You can always have the best of both worlds ...

...and incase you didn't know it RCM&E wasn't always devoted to model aircraft. Boats, cars, robots & even a radio controled beer barrel [that was steerable as it rolled along under it's own power, stopped & dispensed drinks] have all featured in past editions. wink 2

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Hi Glynn

Good luck with the boat building. I was am a boaty I started with boats then moved to planes. The building of the boats is great never done a kit always found it was interesting to plan build trying to find ways to make things etc.I have to say the operating of them I find a bit tame after flying. one option I found quite good was the yachting side always more of a challenge to sail. Built a vic smeed star baby yacht nice one to have in your collection. I would second what someone else said about building something nice so something to treasure for years to come .

Next time I build a boat I am looking to do just that something that maybe remembered for a while. Anyway good luck you seem to have found most of the answer you wanted .

Kind regards


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Posted by Glyn44 on 15/12/2016 19:13:05:

Hi Peter,

Nice boat well done. Yes I can imagine after awhile it becomes rather boring, but I'll see what the club can offer. Looking at your boats superstructure it looks like a 3D printer would be an ideal tool for a scratch build.

3D Printer??? They were not even dreamed of back then!!!

Anyway, that is not as satisfying as cutting and shaping wood. and soldering up bits of thin brass rod etc.

Later I did add a full crew.

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I've got a Lesro Rapier (35 ic) & a Graupner all plastic electric (600 brushed motor) speed boat somewhere in the loft, they've been there for donkeys years.

Glynn, if you intend to build & sail moderate speed (slow) boats I think you might be better off with brushed motors & ESCs. I don't think that there will be any advantage in brushless since weight considerations are not an issue in most sports & scale boats.

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I keep watching the old Aerokits designs that appear on Ebay on occasion, the Sea Queen, Sea Commander, Vosper, Fairy Swordsman - they all turn up now and then. Names from my yoof when my limit was a Merlin powered Patrol Launch on the local park pond. What has held me back is the question of what do you do once you've built it, found somewhere to float it and then gone 'isn't that pretty' a couple of times?

Now, with our British climate I could quite fancy a sailing vessel - years ago I built a static Bluenose schooner and the lines of that still appeal, plus I'd imagine sailing to be more of a challenge (not to mention less antisocial) than power boating.

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Many years ago (cough) '78 (cough), We were going to the National Model Makers Festival.

Knowing that we would be sharing time (due 27MHz limited frequencies) and not liking the prospect of hanging around I bought a new fangled electric Multi/Speed Steering ABS boat hull (Pirhana) and threw components at it. It was so far out when built that on the one test run (on a canal on the friday before going) it needed the rudder at an extreme angle to go straight, but it was blisteringly fast and turning towards the way it wanted to go it would flip turn in its own length from flat out.

Took it, got 3rd in Multi, 3rd in Speed Steering, and the only people to beat me were the Editor of Model Boats and the designer of the hull. At that point I realised how little a challenge it was and gave up and while I still have it, still brushed 540 and NIMH (was NICAD then), the only use it sees if with the grandkids.

I do fancy a racing sailing craft though............................must be getting old.

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