Livres, revues et vidéo traitant de planeurs télécommandés/Books, magazines and Videos related to R/C sailplanes

Il y a malheureusement très peu de documentation en français sur le planeur télécommandé. Il existe quelque magazines qui traitent, entre autres choses, de planeurs télécommandés mais je ne connais aucun livre sur le sujet qui ait été écrit en français. Voici donc mes suggestions.


Livres / Books

Thornburg, Dave
Old Buzzard's Soaring Book
Pony X Press, Albuquerque, 154 p.,1993.
This book is available from Dave Thornburg at Pony X Press, 5 Monticello Drive, Albuquerque, NM, U.S.A., 87123 (505)299-8749

This probably the best book about R/C sailplane flying. The first part discuss flying and air conditions. The second parts covers gliders design.
In the first part, Thornburg write mostly about diverses aspects of thermal flying but he also discusses slope flying. The single most important point in this book is the analysys that the author does about the nature of the air we fly in. His " river of air " image illustrate very instructively how the air around us behaves.
Most books and magazines articles that covers sailplanes " design " are rather dry and theoric. Thornburg, in the second part of his book, describe in a very practical way how to design a R/C sailplane.
This book does not cover all the informations essentials to beginners (like tow hook placement, Hi-Start tension in relation to wind speed and glider weight, etc.) but this book is a must for everyone interrested to learn to fly or design a R/C glider. See also the Old Buzzard Soars Again video.

Stringwell, George
Radio Control Thermal Soaring
RM Books, a division of Chart Hobby Distributors Ltd, Littlehampton, West Sussex, UK, 1988, 383 p.
Small thermal sailplane bible. It covers basics, flight, design, construction, competition and a quantity of technical details. Must be read.

Hughes, Dave
Radio Control Slope Soaring
RM Books, a division of Chart Hobby Distributors Ltd, Littlehampton, West Sussex, UK, 1988, 324 p.
Small bible about slope soaring. It includes among other things a discussion about wind dynamics on the slopes, types of slopes, types of gliders, races, competitions, trimming for aerobatics, scale models, design, aerial photography and many technical details. Must be read.

Atwood, Tom
R/C Pilot's Handbook

Model Airplane News, Air Age Inc., Wilton, CT, 1995, 193p.
This book covers most of the diverse facets of R/C airplane. It contains very good chapters about R/C sailplanes.

Jones, Dave
Radio Controlled Gliding
Argus Books ltd., Hemel Hempstead, Herts, England, 1987, 205 p.
This book covers thermal and slope soaring. Among others, there is information for the beginner (radios, servos, gliders, accessories), repairs, trimming, flying, landing, thermal flying, slope flying, bad weather flying and competitions. Very good for beginners

Stringwell, George
Flying Radio Control Gliders
Argus Books, Hemel Hempstead, Herts, England, 1989, 64 p.
Small book containing interresting informations for beginner ,like plane construction, basic slope and thermal flying. In my humble opinion Jones' and Gornick's books are better.

Gornick, Alan
Basics of Radio Control Sailplanes
Air Age Inc., Wilton, CT, 1989, 79 p.
Good basic book containing, model selection, glider control, radio selection, construction techniques, trimming, thermal and slope flying, aerobatics.

Gardiner, Chas
Flying Scale Gliders,
Argus Books, Hemel Hempstead, Herts, England, 1989, 64 p.
Good small book for pilots interrested by scale sailplanes.

Thomas, David
Radio Control Foam Modeling

Argus Books, Hemel Hempstead, Herts, England,  172p.
Very good book about using foam in airplane modeling

Lambie, Jack
Designing And Building Composite R/C Model Aircraft

Motorbooks International, Osceola, Wisconsin, U.S.A., 1987, 216
Good book

Holland, Peter
Moulding & Glass Fibre techniques

Argus Books, Hemel Hempstead, Herts, England, 1989, 64p.
Good small book about the techniques of moulding and fiberglassing applied to model aircraft and sailplanes




R/C Soaring Digest (RCSD),
American monthly publication specialized in R/C sailplane. Free. Excellent.

Model Airplane News and Electric Flight

Flying Models
Available in stores (Québec)
Monthly magazine related to R/C planes. Has a R/C sailplane section and another one about electric planes.


Vidéo / Video

Thornburg, Dave
Old Buzzard Soars Again
Pony X Press, Albuquerque, 154 p.,1993. Tél: (505) 299-8749

Excellent R/C thermal sailplane video. Contents launching, thermal flying, landing, hand launch. Companion of Old Buzzard's Soaring Book. Important : view it completely, that is even after the generic.

Derstine, John
Aerotow "96" Elmira!
E-mail :
43 minutes of aerotowing video. You will learn the basics of aerotowing and see many scales sailplanes being aerotowed. A visit to Elmira Soaring Museum is included.

Derstine, John
Aerotow "97" Elmira!
E-mail :
60 minutes of aerotowing. Including a pretty good R/C scale sailplane aerobatics demonstration and footage from an airborne R/C video camera.

Derstine, John
Ultimate Scale Soaring
Features Aerotow '98 and aerobatics soaring in Germany. Very well done video.

Dodgson, Bob
Dodgson Designs Video Tape One, 1986
21230 Damson Road, Bothell, WA, 98021, phone: (206)776-8067,

Great flight sequences. Features Windsong, Pivot, Pixy and Camano. Hand launching and hand catching a Lovesong is thrilling. It is like the Lovesong is a trained bird of prey flying back on the fist of it's trainer. Seems alive. It gives me goose bumps. Interresting sequences of Pivot+ too. This video is no longer available: Dodgson went out of business.

Endless Lift Video
Paul Naton

I viewed Endless Lift Video from Paul Naton and enjoyed it many times since. It is great. Very inspiring specially for guys like me who are isolated from experienced R/C Sailplane pilots. Good shooting too, good editing, good music and very good flying. Paul sure knows how to exploit minute lift with his HLG.
Bravo Paul
Need more info?
E-mail Paul -

Endless Lift II
Paul Naton
Endless Lift II begins where Endless Lift neded. The first video covered mostly HLG and slope soaring featuring mostly Paul Natobn as a pilot. ELII shows many different types of R/C Sailplanes : slope, scale, combat, thermal.
Very good

Radio Carbon Art produces many very interresting sailplane videos.

Soar Utah Adventure
Paul Naton
Paul bring us on a slope soaring trip he made in Utah. Excellent video and sound quality. Many interresting planes : scale sailplanes, PSS, etc. l

Lift Ticket
Dave Reese
Lift Ticket presents hi performance slope sailplanes. The introductory scenes of a F-20 with a smoke cartridge flying near the Goldengate is breath taking. It is difficult to believe that plane has no motors : high speed flying, long upward vertical moves. Video and sound quality are excellent. We see many different exciting slope sites, dynamic soaring, high performance slope sailplanes, scale sailplanes, combat and PSS. An interview with Pat Bowman who brang EPP foam to sailplane modeling; an interview with Joe Wurts who pionnered Dynamic Soaring.
A video that must be seen.
Available from :

Lex Liberato
Airborne to be Wild
E-nail : Lex Liberato <>
55 minutes of EPP combat video and construction techniques.

Collins, Taylor
R/C Soaring... From the Ground Up!
e-mail :

This 75 minute video covers all of the basics of R/C Soaring.... construction hints and techniques, covering, radio installation, flight trimming, and learning to fly. Although this video was produced with the beginner in mind, it is packed full of useful information, hints, and kinks for all serious glider guiders.

An overhead camera takes you into the workshop.... and shows tools and fixtures you can build yourself... to make model construction easier..... and lots of live flying footage shows actual flying situations... and what to do about them. This new video is a great addition to your personal video library... or for your club... to get beginners started right.

The video includes a 7 page written report... with specific information and recommendations on what to buy... and why.... to get started in this great hobby/sport of R/C soaring....

Taylor Collins
Proprietor....the "Glider Guy" himself.......
(505) 898-8281

Collins, Taylor
Building Hollow Composite Aircraft Structures
e-mail :

Good video teaching how to build hollow composite R/C sailplane structures

Aerospace Composite Products
Vacuum Bagging Techniques Video
Very good video explaining and demonstrating different wing vacuum bagging techniques

Tallant Productions
The 1994 International Slope race, Return to Davenport

Very good video about Davenport slope race.Good race footing, some spectacular mid-airs. Nice aerial camera shooting

Available from:
Tallant Productions
6922 Hutchins ave
Sebastopol, CA
U.S.A. 95472-4539
phone: (707)823-3534

Sky Bench Aerotech
Hand Launch R/C Sailplanes, Great Lakes 1.5m R/C Sailplane League
Nice video about basics of Hand Launch R/C Sailplanes

Dynamic Soaring, 1997 IHLGF Hand-Launch, Slope Fun and Combat
Nice video without fancy editing featuring some spectacular dynamic soaring. Also features HLG and slope fun and combat.
Available from : John Roe <>

©, Louis Cimon
2001-04-01 (révisé 13-12-27)