Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Amazing waste of time and money

I just destroyed my latest model plane. Let's take stock of just how much money and time this hobby has taken over the last couple of years. I'll upload pictures and specific dates as I get a chance.

First came the helicopters:

E-flite Blade CP -

Money spent - (airframe + parts) $400
Tinkering time - 10 hours
Flying time - 1 hour
Ultimate fate - smashed in fit of rage
Duration - 1 week

I sold my last telescope to buy this, for $250. I bought that scope for $250. Note the incredible value represented by the hobby of astronomy. Contrast this with what's to come. This helicopter lasted a week.

Lite Machines Corona -

Money spent - (airframe + parts) $1500
Tinkering time - 40 hours
Flying time - 5 hours
Ultimate fate - sold for $300 total
Duration - 9 months

Can't say enough good stuff about this machine. Survived me, had fun flying it. But, it certainly ate a big chunk of change.

Ikarus Eco 8

Money spent - (airframe + parts) $900
Tinkering time - 10 hours
Flying time - 30 minutes
Ultimate fate - sold, damaged, for $100 total
Duration - 1 month

Huge, huge, huge waste of money

Then I got into planes.

ParkZone Mustang P-51

Money spent - (airframe + parts) $250
Tinkering time - 4 hours
Flying time - 20 minutes
Ultimate fate - scrapped, servo + receiver used for boat
Duration - 1 week

Too fast for the field I fly at, also after sustaining some damage, never recovered.


Money spent - (airframe only) $170
Tinkering time - 10 minutes
Flying time - 3 hours so far
Ultimate fate - still have!
Duration - months

Clearly the right option for me.

Animal (3D foam plane, bought mostly for parts)

Money spent - $250
Tinkering time - none, built already
Flying time - <1 minute (prop fell off, plane crashed)
Duration - 2 days
Ultimate fate - scrapped for parts

Ikarus Wizard Flying Boat

Money spent - $70
Tinkering time - 10 hours to build
Flying time - 10 minutes
Duration - 3 days
Ultimate fate - crashed, scrapped for parts

Mini iFO

Money spent - $70
Tinkering time - 8 hours to build
Flying time - 10 minutes so far
Duration - still around
Ultimate fate - damaged, needs a redesigned servo tray

And I've also built some free flight planes

Guillow's Cessna

Money spent - $10
Building time - 10 hours
Flying time - 10 minutes (crashed too often)
Ultimate fate - wrecked in the garage

Guillow's Javelin duration model

Money spent - $15
Building time -10 hours
Flying time - 30 minutes (lost in tree)
Ultimate fate - recovered from forest, discarded

Dumas Tiger Moth

Money spent - $25
Building time - >20 hours
Flying time - 5 minutes (damaged)
Ultimate fate - destroyed in a fit of rage

The Totals:

Money spent - money recovered: $3190
Time spent building and repairing: 114 hours, or almost 3 workweeks
Time spent flying: 7.8 hours, or about 1 workday

What's left?

I have my T-Hawk, transmitter, and the mini-IFO which basically just needs service. I have 2 incredibly frustrating experiences where I saw red and destroyed the plane or helicopter. I have a ratio of 1 part flying to 40 parts building/repairing. I have some enjoyable evenings spent building balsa planes, and some spent repairing helicopters (the first time is fun). I am down more than $3000 in a year and a half. (most of that in helicopters, which is why I got rid of them).

1 comment:

vivek goel said...

hello rhys,

my name is vivek goel, and we went to college together. i'd like to tell you that all is well.

vivek goel