Control Line

Control line (also called U-Control ) is a simple and light way of controlling a flying model aircraft. The aircraft is connected to the operator by a pair of lines, attached to a handle, that work the elevator of the model. This allows the model to be controlled in the pitch axis. It is constrained to fly on the surface of a hemisphere by the control lines. There is also a control system that uses only a single solid wire that is twisted around its own axis, that spins a spiral inside the airplane to move the elevator. While it can be used with some success on any type of model, it is best for speed models where the reduced aerodynamic drag of the single line is a significant advantage. The control provided is not as precise as the two-line control system. The control lines are usually either stranded or solid wires of anywhere from 0.008 in (0.20 mm) to 0.021 in (0.53 mm). Sewing thread or fishing line may be used instead of wires to control very small models, but its air resistance is greater. A third line is sometimes used to control the engine throttle, and more lines may be added to control other functions. Electrical signals sent over the wires are sometimes used in scale models to control functions such as retracting undercarriage and flaps. Almost all control-line models are powered with conventional model aircraft engines of various types. But it is possible to fly control-line models that do not use on-board propulsion, in a mode called "whip-powered", where the pilot "leading" the model with his arm and wind supply the necessary energy to keep the airplane aloft, in a fashion similar to kite-flying.

Read more about Control LineHistory, The Airframe, Controls, Power, Landing Gear, Competitions, Safety

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... Control-line flying is generally quite safe when all prescribed safety measures are followed ... In most competition categories, a "safety thong" connecting the control handle to the pilot's wrist is also required, so if the pilot inadvertently releases the handle ... The lines, handle, and control system are subjected to a "pull test" before flight to ensure that they are in good shape with some significant margin ...
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