Spring is coming soon! Whether you store your RC airplanes and helicopters for the winter, use skis to fly off of the snow, or escape the cold to fly year round, spring is the perfect time to make sure that your models are still in good working order. Pesky gremlins can sneak in and sabotage critical components of your aircraft. This is especially true for control system parts. So we’ve come up with a handful of tips to help you ensure that your flying machines stay safe and reliable.
Is It Secure?
Inspect all of the control system components of your model. Verify that all of the servo screws are in place and tightened appropriately. Make sure that the servo horns are securely attached to the servos. While you are at it, check out any E/Z Connectors and make sure that Snap Washers (the plastic or metal retaining pieces that are pushed onto the stud) are still doing their job. If your model uses flexible pushrods like our Laser Rods, check that the outer sleeves and pushrod exits are firmly glued in place. It is also a good idea to give each control surface a firm tug to ensure that none of the hinges have worked loose.
Is It Broken?
Du-Bro parts are tough, but they are not indestructible. Flying mishaps and hangar rash can be brutal. Bumping a control surface against the wall while moving a model in your workshop could damage a clevis, the control horn, or the model’s airframe. Look things over and replace anything that is questionable…it’s cheap insurance.
If your model has been subjected to particularly damp environments (Hey float flyers…I’m talking to you!), you may even find rusty pushrods and/or clevises. Swap those parts out before they cause a bad day!
Is It Sticky?
Finally, you want to make sure that all of the control system parts move smoothly. The servos should move through their full range of travel without binding. Also look for twitchy movement that could indicate stripped servo gears or malfunctioning electronics.
Temporarily disconnect your pushrods from the servos and manually cycle each control surface back and forth. It is important to address any excess resistance or sticky points. I promise, those issues will not magically get better in the air.
Annual inspection and maintenance of your model’s control system is a great strategy to help prevent crashes and maintain great performance year after year!