Looking for a little guidance

Hi all, I've been lurking for a couple days now and decide I may as well go ahead and post my question, most of you seem reasonably open-minded and
helpful =)
I'm rather new to R/C, I'll admit. I used to fly gliders about 5 years back, but never got too fully into it - about all I flew was a 2-meter Wanderer, and it lasted through several not-so-great wrecks =)
Anyhow, I'm fully interested in getting back into R/C, but I'm probably going to have to start somewhat from scratch. The area I now live in has only one club near (I know must of you belong to clubs and swear by them) but it is not very accessible to me, as I have no personal transportation, I heavily rely on public transit, which doesn't service that club's area
I do, however, have access to a friend's place with a nice garage for building space, and several wide-open pastures that would make for great flying areas. Said friend is also interested in R/C and has secured one pasture that we can clear of blackberries and use as a field, unfortunately it's got a rather nasty slope to it and I doubt it'd be good for landing anything but a glider. There is also a gravel drive leading up to the ranch houses that might be useable for semi-rough landings, and there may be enough grass beside it for not-so-rough landings. Provided I could walk far enough, I could probably also land it on the paved drive that leads up to the gravel... I seriously think there's enough room to work out some sort of flying-strip arrangement.
I'd like to get into powered airplanes, and with my limited budget I believe I should probably start with electric. (Other decisions helped me reach this decision as well, considering they appear to have less to worry about for a beginner, and are generally easier to get all the details sorted out)
Mainly what I'm asking for is any sort of helpful advice on entry-level cheap electric (ARF probably) planes, equipment (I still have my old 4-channel futaba which might be salvageable) and, most importantly, tips/suggestions/direction on training myself to fly, with my little bit of glider experience which I'm sure will come back to help me once I start seriously taking a stab at things -- I know most of you are advocates of learning from a real trainer at a club field, but like I said, that's unfortunately not within my access range. Provided the plane's a little on the sturdy side (another reason for choosing electric, it sounds like they crash with less damage?) I'm not afraid of a few unplanned landings, and the area around the ranch has very few breakables, so I'm not worried about property damage.
I'm also aware of the advantages to a newbie between ARF and Kit -- I'm not against building a kit, and do have the space to do so in the garage, so if you feel there's a better kit trainer than ARF trainer, I can do that too =) (Heck I'm even willing to give plans a shot - plans would allow me to space the expense out easier, rather than saving up and buying everything at once)
Anyways, any insight on a good electric trainer (preferably not too hefty on the pocketbook) and maybe some books or something that'll help me teach myself, I'd greatly appreciate! Thanks a lot in advance, and I'm very sorry about the long post I tend to be somewhat verbose =)
-- Ray
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On 7/19/2003 3:53 PM Ted shuffled out of his cave and grunted these great (and sometimes not so great) words of knowledge:
There are quite a few GOOD electric trainers out there. From the description of your flying site, I would suggest a "Foamie". They are near impossible to destroy - some white glue (or 5 minute epoxy), toothpicks and/or 3/4 - 1" packing tape and you will be ready to fly again.
I fly both glo and electric (primarily glo). I can recommend the "Sky Scooter Pro II" - NOT the regular Sky Scooter. The whole setup ready to fly is about $150 at Tower (Transmitter, receiver, servos, battery pack, battery charger, etc).
I would strongly suggest getting a "folding prop" (about 8x4, 8x5) an 8 cell AAA pack 700+ MAH also. The 8 cell pack (with a piece of 1/4" foam on one side) will fit right in the battery pocket of the Scooter. The extra cell will give you the added zip without damaging the motor.
You will have to work at destroying this plane. Once you have gotten the skills back, you will find the Scooter can do basic aerobatics also.
Hope this helps.

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Simulator & Electric Park Flyer Links http://www.rcsites.net/aeropal /
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Thanks for the link, aeropal -- it confirms a sugestion that was made to me via email response to my original post
Thanks also to all other suggestions made... It looks like i'll end up going with a Slow Stick ... the reviews i've read on it seem to rather strongly suggest that, while it needs a little work, overall it should make a nice gentle trainer that'll suit exactly what i've got available to me
I'm a little concerned about wind though - they don't suggest flying it anything over 5mph. I'll be going to the proposed flying site over the next week and will get a better feel for what kind of wind the place sees, to make sure it's gonna be okay.
The low price tag makes me very comfortable, particularly if i can get some sort of arrangement for the servos. I may post more question slater about older futaba radios with new servos, possibly other brands, to go micro and lighter or something, we'll see... i need to dig out the old 4-chan and see what it actually is first =)

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Rayanth Drygu wrote:

I woudl say that slow flyres despite the lack of wind capability, have several major advantages.
(i) They are so light, espceially with Li-Poly batteries, that they don't dmage themselves especailly if flown over long grass.
(ii) Mostly they will fly almost hands off, so letting go of the sticks at reasonable altitude is a not bad way to get out of a mess.
(iii) things happen slow enough so that you have time to think which way to push the sticks.
(iv) They are cheap enough airframe wise for you to wreck a few and not have it hurt too much. Also they are ugly enough for you not to care.
After you have mastered one of these, the next step is to go for more power - Twinstars are a good step up. AILERONS (gasp) and SPEED (double gasp!)
Beyond that its down to inclinations.

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| pasture that we can clear of blackberries and use as a field, unfortunately | it's got a rather nasty slope to it and I doubt it'd be good for landing | anything but a glider.
Depending on how large of a slope it is, it might be just perfect for slope flying! Which is a lot of fun, and the flying wings that are very popular for slope flying are great for learning to fly -- they're almost indestructable.
I suspect that it's not a large enough slope, or you'd have called it a hill, but maybe ...
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