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Featured Articles

  • AUSTRIA:  Retroplane 2012 Set for Spitzerberg 26-13 July AUSTRIA: Retroplane 2012 Set for Spitzerberg 26-13 July
    RETROPLANE is a gathering focused on scale slope soaring, reserved for older models of gliders produced prior to 1960.  That is, the time preceding the arrival of composite gliders. This meeting brings together building enthusiasts and fans of the original models. Think retro glider, machines built of wood and tube and canvas. Registration opens on February 1, […]
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  • ICARE RC Swift S-1 for Slope or Tow — RC Sport Flyer Magazine Review ICARE RC Swift S-1 for Slope or Tow — RC Sport Flyer Magazine Review
    RCAeroTowing.com and RC Sport Flyer Magazine have teamed up!  Together we will be sharing feature articles, kit reviews, sailplane build articles, scale sailplane documentation and more here at RCAT. Here’s a gem from September 2011, a beautiful 1:4 scale aerobat that is perfect for a big-air slope or certainly suitable for towing.  Available from Etienne […]
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Latest News

  • FIRST LOOK:  New 46% PA-25 Pawnee from Team Edge – includes update from Bill Hempel FIRST LOOK: New 46% PA-25 Pawnee from Team Edge – includes update from Bill Hempel
    2012 looks to be a stellar year for new airplanes at Team Edge!   Many perfectly suited for tow duties. NEWS! – 01/15/12 update from Bill:   The wing span is 198” Weight (projected) 65-70lbs (with 200cc motor) Canister area provided Functional wings struts Arriving in 3 weeks. (However, I have sold out on this […]
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  • USA: Premier Pilots New 2012 Offerings USA: Premier Pilots New 2012 Offerings
    Hello, I’m Ren DiLeo of Premier Pilots.  I have been flying gliders for 35 years at Torrey Pines Glider Port in San Diego, California. I love traveling to various flying sites that I read about from others and also meeting fliers from all over.  My passion has always been modeling. My father is retired from […]
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  • TOW:  Flapped Version of Rascal 110 Introduced by SIG Manufacturing TOW: Flapped Version of Rascal 110 Introduced by SIG Manufacturing
    A favorite aerotowing platform of many through the years, the SIG Rascal 110 has become a difficult to find bird in recent times.  No longer!  SIG has introduced a new version of the venerable Rascal 110 ARF now with the one thing many pilots wished it always had — flaps! Priced at $549.99, the Rascal […]
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  • ILLINOIS, USA:  10th Anniversary JR Aerotow Set for May 31 – June 3, 2012 ILLINOIS, USA: 10th Anniversary JR Aerotow Set for May 31 – June 3, 2012
    Dates are set for what WILL be the largest aerotow event in the United States. Make plans to attend the 10th Anniversary JR Aerotow, May 31 – June 3, 2012. The annual JR event is held in the beautiful countryside of Monticello, Illinois.  The tenth anniversary promised to be the best yet!  The team at RCAeroTowing.com […]
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  • CZECH REPUBLIC:  First Photos!  New 7-Meter Span ASH-31 Mi From LET Model CZECH REPUBLIC: First Photos! New 7-Meter Span ASH-31 Mi From LET Model
    It’s heeeeeerr!!!  We’ll let these new photos speak for themselves.  Then read on below for more on the new ASH-31 from LET Model.  Speaking of “let,” let’s go rob a bank and get one! History:  The Alexander Schleicher Company announced their plans for the ASH 31 Mi in 2008.  Just a year later, on April 29, […]
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  • RCAT EXCLUSIVE: Interview with Axel from Axel Scale Pilots
    Interview with Axel Pfannmüller of Axel’s Scale Pilots Axel Pfannmüller, owner and founder of Axel’s Scale Pilots, offers extremely detailed scale pilot figures and cockpit accessories for sailplane enthusiasts. Alex from RCAeroTowing.com (RCAT) conducted an interview with Axel (AXEL) to learn more about his products and the making of pilots. RCAT: How did you come […]
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  • Scale Sailplane Spoiler Repair and Maintenance
    by Len Buffinton – Fear not!  Here are the basics of simple repair and maintenance of your Schempp-Hirth style air-brakes / spoilers. If you have watched the video on “spoiler repair“, you have already learned how to take apart the spoiler and put it back together. This is simply a written, step by step recounting of […]
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  • Tricking Out Scale Sailplane Cockpits – View The Slide Show
    by Len Buffinton — When it comes to the front office, many builders, including myself, don’t take the required time to do it right. Speaking recently with Dennis Brandt, a well known builder and flier from California, the topic of cockpit detail came up. Why do his planes always look so scale? Dennis explained, “Cockpit […]
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  • Slope Soaring The Swiss Alps… Hahnenmoos Style… View The Slide Show
    by Len Buffinton –   We arrived at the gateway to heaven, or at least what seemed like heaven. All that was left was a gondola ride up the mountain to Berghotel Hahnenmoos, nestled high above the spectacular little town of Adelboden, Switzerland. Stepping off the lift onto the cement platform, you quickly realize you […]
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RCAeroTowing.com HOW TO: Aerotow Event Setup & Etiquette

by Henryk Kobylanski and Neil Spencer –

Aerotowing is the process of using a powered aircraft to tow a sailplane into the air. As with the full size, aero modelers also use the same system to launch their scale sailplanes and release them at heights that allow thermal flight when conditions are right.

Over the past 10 years aerotowing has been growing in popularity in the scale soaring community due to the following factors:

  • It is usually safer for maiden flights than the slope and is generally less hazardous for the models when landing
  • It generally allows for less traveling time as most model airfields can be utilized
  • Less weather dependence compared to slope flying
  • When organized correctly, more people can be flying at the same time than on a slope

With this growth in popularity, there also comes the inevitable need for better management of aerotowing events. In this article, we try and cover the main areas that influence an aerotow event and in doing so hopefully make it a fun and safe affair.

If anyone has comments or suggestions for additions to this article, feel free to email us here

Basic Requirements

Club affiliation and insurance


Latest from the forum

    Current event coverage

    • Cumberland, MD Aerotow Featured in January 2012 RC Soaring Digest
      Highpoint Aviation’s Jim Dolly and prolific soaring writer/photographer Dave Garwood have teamed up for a long feature artice and series of great pictures capturing aerotowing at the beautiful Highpoint site just outside of Cumberland, Maryland.  Their article is featured in the January 2012 edition of Radio Controlled Soaring Digest (RCSD).  RCSD is now in it’s […]
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    • Towing, Soaring and Chowing Down in Delaware at the 2011 SKSS Aerotow!
      August 22:  A good time was had by all.  The crew at SKSS put on three fantastic days of soaring, a huge Saturday night BBQ and crab feast, and… one rainy Sunday.  We’ll take it! In addition to great soaring conditions in the core of each day, a number of sponsors turned out to offer […]
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    • 2011 JR Aerotow USA Marks Record Attendance
      If you were not there,  we missed you and sincerely hope next year we’ll see you in the tow line.  In 2011, a wonderful time was had by over 125 pilots and spectators at the JR Aerotow USA.  Folks came from as far way as Australia, many from California, and a good group of attendees were there for the very first […]
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    • The Inaugural JR Aerotow Australia
      By Neil Spencer.   The inaugural JR Australia Aerotow was held over the Easter break from 22–15 April at Jerilderie in Southern New South Wales.  The township of Jerilderie is famous for its association with the Australian bush ranger Ned Kelly and a life sized Ned greets customers at the Royal Mail hotel.  Jerilderie is […]
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    • 2011 Quebec Aerotow – A Success In The Books!
      UPDATE, July 24, 2011:  The first Quebec Aerotow is in the books and a great time was had by all!  So, look to RCAeroTowing.com for 2012 event dates coming soon.  The weekend saw the eastern half of North America gripped in a massive heatwave, but in lower Quebec humidity was low and winds were constant […]
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