My first RC plane is a 3 channel carbon fiber and ripstop slow flyer.
Between it and RF G-3.5, it is still flyable after 15+ flights and I can
usually land it where I intend. Great fun!
Now, I'm thinking about my second model, which I want to have ailerons. I'm
looking at a park flyer - specifically, the Wasp
It can be built as a 3
channel with dihedral or a straight winged 4 channel plane with ailerons.
What would happen if I built it with both?
The dihedral has two main functions:
1: Roll stability. When the plane rolls to the right, the right wing
effectively becomes slightly longer, and the left one slightly
shorter, causing a lift difference that opposes the initial movement.
2: Allow the rudder to cause roll. When you apply right rudder, the
left wing is pointed slightly forwards and the right one slightly
backwards. As a result, the left wing will have a slightly larger
angle of attack, and produce more lift, rolling the plane to the
If you build both dihedral and ailerons, your ailerons would be less
effective and your rudder would cause the plane to roll. An expert
pilot would say it flies like a dog. For a total newbie, this setup
might not be all bad, but since you can handle your 3-channel with
reasonable confidence, I recommend going for zero dihedral. You can
fly it just fine using aileron and elevator only (forget about the
rudder at first, except on the ground), and it will be much more fun
to fly when the ailerons work the way they should.
Wot he said..plus.
The most noticeable thing moving from 3 channel dihedralled plane to a
dihedral-less plane with ailerons, is that the plane is much more
neutral. Put it in a bank, and it will stay there. It requires opposite
aileron to correct. taking mitts off sticks wont have it magically right
This is why many advanced trainers leave a little in..so you get used to
using the ailerons, but the plane at least won't tighten in a turn..
Going from a stable to a neutrally table plane, is quite a big step for
For reference, high wing plane needs about 5 degrees to be self
righting, and 2-3 degrees to ensure a ban won't steepen.