There are a lot of tasks involved in getting our aircraft from the workbench to the flying field, and here you’ll find 35 of our favorite gadgets to make the hobby that much more fun and enjoyable. We’ve arranged them in categories, including field equipment, tools, accessories, and supplies, so you’ll be sure to find something that will become your newest handy favorite!
Sullivan/Marcy’s Marvelous Wheel Chocks
Made out of anodized aluminum, these chocks are designed for maximum safety and security for your plane during transport. They conserve space in trailers and vans, enhance storage eflciency, and can be used on the workbench during hardware and radio installation.
$21.95 | sullivanproducts.com
WingTote Wing Bags
Designed for RC planes with two separate wing panels, the Double Totes (available in several sizes) include a central ⅜-inch foam center layer enclosed in fleece to separate the two wing panels, and they use Velcro to secure it to the bottom. On the front is a long joiner tube pocket that’s large enough to easily insert and remove the tube. A pocket to hold a spare prop is also included.
$99.99 | wingtote.com
Graupner Polaron EX 800 7S Charger
Available in five colors, the Polaron is equipped with a color touchscreen and has two charger connections. It features DC 120W, AC 60W per output and can be adjusted for each channel. It has a 40-battery memory and charges 1- to 7-cell LiPo packs, 1 to 14 Ni-Cd/NiMH cells, and 1 to 12 Pb cells.
$249.00 | openhobby.com
Great Planes Precision Propeller Reamers
Available in various sizes (in metric and standard SAE), these stepped T-handle propeller reamers are a must-have for your field box. Reamers accurately size the holes in propellers, so they will precisely fit your engine. They also make balancing your props more accurate.
$10.99–$14.99 | greatplanes.com
Futaba BR-3000 Battery Checker
Great to keep in your flight box, the Futaba BR-3000 battery checker quickly displays voltage levels of battery packs. It shows the total voltage and remaining capacity on a bar graph and as a percentage. It can be used with 2- to 7-cell LiFe, LiPo, and Li-Ion packs as well as 4- to 7-cell Ni-Cd and NiMH packs.
$59.99 | futaba-rc.com
Zurich Extreme Glare sunglasses
Designed for extreme-glare conditions, Zurich Extreme Glare sunglasses are nonpolarized and ideal for anyone flying RC. You can order custom and prescription lenses, which can be made to fit any optical frame designed for removable lenses (shown: ready-to-wear “King” by Bolle with Dark Density Rose Z|XG lenses). Mild “Single Vision” prescription lenses start at $110.00.
$145.00 | extremeglaresunglasses.com
Red Baron Storage Bags
Stay organized with these high-quality carry bags, specifically designed for RC equipment. Red Baron Hobbies has several bags for different-size wings as well as these ultra handy battery and propeller bags. Made with a vinyl-backed polyester exterior with a 1/4-inch foam-lined tricot lining, these bags protect your gear at the field and in the shop.
$67.30 (battery), $37.30 (propellers) | redbaron hobbies.com
Made from high-quality materials, this multiple-connector lead includes 18 of the most popular connector types, all wired in parallel to one set of banana plugs for attaching to your charger. Heavy-duty 10 AWG silicone wire makes up the main charge lead, while the individual connector leads use various gauges of the same-quality wire.
$16.99 | progressiverc.com
ProTek R/C Universal Radio Case
This case has a tough aluminum shell with reinforced corners, locking latches, and a high-density foam-lined interior. A foam insert is not included but is available to fit RC airplane transmitters. It will accommodate Airtronics, Spektrum, JR, and Futaba transmitters. Interior dimensions are 14 × 10 × 5.5 inches.
$49.99 (case), $17.99 (Pick-n-Pull foam insert) | amainhobbies.com
Hitec RCD X1 Touch
The X1 Touch 55-watt AC/DC charger has a 3.2-inch-high resolution touchscreen for effortless data monitoring and retrieval. With a built-in cell balancer and multiple safety functions in a compact package, it’s easy to use and transport. It easily charges NiMH, Ni-Cd, LiPo, LiFe, Li-Ion, and lead-acid batteries with adjustable charge current rates of 0.1 to 7.0 amps.
$99.99 | hitecrcd.com
MaxAmps 1SQ/1Si Parallel Charging Adapter
Charge up to three 1S LiPo packs at once! These parallel-charging adapters are specifically designed for MaxAmps’ 1S 400mAh packs for the popular Heli-Max 1SQ, 1SQ V-Cam, and 1Si series of quadcopters.
$11.99 | maxamps.com
BB Tools Classic Cutters
Considered by many as the best wire and cable cutters around, BB Tools’ Classic Cutters are available in two sizes. The 001 is ideal for stranded cable wire up to 3/32 inch in diameter and can cut music and piano wire up to 5/64 inch in diameter. The 002 is perfect for cutting stranded cable wire up to 3/16 inch in diameter and cuts music and piano wire up to 1/8 inch in diameter.
$16.00, $18.00 | bbtools.net
Hangar 9 Angle Pro Digital Meter
This digital incidence meter is just the thing for checking and adjusting the angles of your wing, tail surfaces, and control throws. It can even be used to check the thrust off set angle of your engine. It comes with the digital meter and battery, a long aluminum extension, two attachment brackets, and a control throw attachment clamp.
$79.99 | hangar-9.com
Kylin Precision Tool Kit
This 20-piece tool set includes machined and anodized metric screw, hex, and nut drivers in a soft nylon organizer case. Specifically intended for RC helicopter lovers, this tool set is also perfect for people who want quality and precision on their workbench or in their flight box.
$63.48 | kdsmodels usa.com
AeroBroach Hinge Slot Cutter
Including three popular sizes, these slot cutters are easy to use. The “CA” broach is for use with thin CA type hinges. The “60” broach is for standard pinned hinges for up to .60-size airplanes, and the “1/4” is for heavy-duty, two-piece pinned hinges used in larger 1/4-scale airplanes
$17.95 | aerobroach.com
X-Acto Basic Knife Set
The Compression Basic Knife Set offers X-Acto’s most popular hobby knives and blades used by serious modelers and hobbyists. Three X-Acto knives are included with a full set of precision knife blades. Housed in a soft nylon compression case, an instruction guide and reference booklet are included.
$29.99 | xacto.com
Harry Higley Easy Hinger
These slot cutters make installing perfectly aligned hinges a piece of cake. Specifically designed for instant CA glue hinges, these tools are made out of aluminum and use common no. 11 hobby blades. Packed in pairs, the smaller hinge uses a single blade, while the larger one holds two blades for a wider slot.
$15.39 | harryhigley.com
Tingler Innovations SolderBuddy
This handy soldering aid holds all of the most popular connectors used by RC hobbyists. It can secure several connector types, including Deans, 3.5mm bullet, Molex, 2mm, servo, and 5.5mm power connectors, while providing a convenient and stable platform for soldering your connectors. Several types of SolderBuddy holding fixtures are available.
$44.75 | solderbuddy.com
Robart Paint Shaker
For serious scale modelers who paint with Model Master and similar scale paints, the Robart Paint Shaker operates at 5,000 shakes per minute to quickly blend your paints. This ensures proper color saturation and smooth application with airbrush spray equipment.
$40.45 | robart.com
Robart Super Stand II
Quick to set up for any building, maintenance, or transportation needs, the Super Stand II is fully adjustable to fit any-size RC airplane. Sturdy, lightweight, and unaffected by glow fuel, the stand is equipped with soft rubber pads to prevent damage to your model airplane.
$26.45 | robart.com
TrakPower TK950 Soldering Station
This heavy-duty 60-watt design heats quickly to temperature and has a range of 392°F to 896°F. It holds temperature settings to within 1.8°F when idle. The station includes a soldering iron with stand, a sponge, a temperature-control unit, chisel-point and pencil tips, and an instruction manual.
$79.99 | towerhobbies.com
Du-Bro Tru-Spin Prop Balancer
One of the most precise balancers available, the Tru-Spin Prop Balancer features a specially designed locking cone to securely center and lock the prop on the balancing shaft. For use with airplane props as well as spinners, helicopter rotor heads, ducted fan jet impellers, and flywheels, each balancer comes complete with assembly instructions and prop-balancing tips.
$39.14 | shop.dubro.com
Master Airscrew Razor Plane
Made out of tough filled-composite plastic, the Master Airscrew Razor Plane is for all serious builders of wood airplane kits. It is adjustable, removes material quickly, and comes with extra single-edged razor blades. Replacement blades are also available.
$7.35 | master airscrew.com
Du-Bro Super Strength Servo Arms
Available in sizes to fit all major brands of standard servos, Super Strength Servo Arms are made out of long carbon-fiber composite for added strength. Packaged in eight-count bags, they are available for Futaba, Hitec, JR, Airtronics, Tower Hobbies, Hobbico, and Command servos.
$10.42–$13.13 | shop.dubro.com
Sharp RC ArmSafe
Equipped with 12AWG wire, the Sharp RC Arming Kit is a great way to add safety and convenience to your electric RC airplane. All hardware and arming plugs are included. Simply remove the Deans connector to make it impossible for your plane to accidently start.
$13.40 | sharprc.com
Hitec RCD S60 Camera
This rugged professional-grade action camera is designed to capture 16MP still photos and HD 1080p/60fps video. It comes with a waterproof case and a detachable 2-inch LCD back screen for viewing your footage. It is Wi-Fi—enabled and can be controlled with your mobile device using a downloadable app.
$299.99 (full package #44551) | hitecrcd.com
Ram Wireless Nav Lites
Ram’s new micro wireless flashing LED Nav Lites come packaged with three dimesize red, green, and white modules that weigh a total of 5g. Powered by a replaceable button battery, there’s no wiring or soldering required. They can be easily attached to any model that weighs 1 oz. or more.
$14.95 | ramrcandramtrack.com
Eagle Tree Guardian 2D/3D Stabilizer
Suitable for gas or electric power, the Guardian smooths out air turbulence and provides true wing-leveling capability to help recover from lost orientation. It helps compensate for nonideal flying conditions. A spare transmitter switch lets you select 2D wing-leveling mode, 3D aerobatic mode, and no stabilization mode.
$63.74 | eagletree systems.com
A silicone-based adhesive, BSI Foam-Cure works well on EPP and EPO foams. Crystal clear, it forms a more flexible bond than CA. It is, however, not an instant-bonding glue and has no accelerator to speed cure time.
$6.49 (4 oz.) | bsi-inc.com
Great Planes Plan Protector
Available on a 25-foot-long roll, this clear plastic Plan Protector material keeps your model plans in crisp, clean condition. The Plan Protector resists modeling adhesives and makes removing your parts from the workbench easy. No more peeling and sanding paper scraps off your glue joints!
$11.99 | towerhobbies.com
Zap Silicone Tape
Available by the roll (1 in. x 10 ft.) and in black, red, and white, this silicone tape leaves no sticky residue, is waterproof and airtight, and seals wet or dry. Simply stretch and touch the tape back onto itself and it makes a permanent bond. Because it’s fuel resistant and unstretched off the roll, it is easy to use for fuel-tank installations and can insulate electrical wires up to 8,000 volts.
$5.95 | zapglue.com
RTL Fasteners Hardware
Perfect for RC pilots and hobbyists, RTL Fasteners offers bulk packaging for all commonly used and specialty hardware. Metric and standard SAE sizes are available in small 10- to 100-count bags as well as in handy assortment packaging. From standard servo screws and nylon wing hold-down bolts to socket-head screws, brass inserts, and stainless-steel hardware, RTL Fasteners has it all.
Pricing varies: $3.63 (2-56×⅜-in. Socket Head Cap Screw, 24 pcs.), $98.95 (#1450 Standard Assortment, 1,228 pcs.) | rtlfasteners.com
Precision Aero Glue Caddy Kit
This light-ply, laser-cut kit assembles in minutes and helps organize your workbench. It holds three sizes of glue (½, 1, and 2 oz.) as well as round epoxy bottles. Store your epoxy right side up or upside-down so that it’s always ready to use. The caddy also offers a place to keep your pencils, pens, or hobby knives.
$12.95 | precision-aero.com
Zap-A-Gap Single Use Tubes
Ever break something at the flying field and need just a little glue? Now packaged in five 0.01-oz. (0.5g) single-use tubes, you can now use Zap-A-Gap CA+ glue a little at a time whenever you need it. It’s ideal for the flight box or the workshop.
$4.99 | zapglue.com