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Valley Journals

RC Enthusiasts Swap Tips, Tricks and Expertise

Apr 07, 2016 03:40PM ● By Cassidy Ward

By Cassidy Ward

Ogden - The popularity of remote-controlled vehicles has seen a sharp incline in recent years due largely to the introduction of small and affordable drone aircraft, but members of the Falcon RC Club operating out of Hill Air Force Base have been coming together to share their love of RC for almost 20 years. Each year, they gather to swap equipment and expertise at Utah’s largest RC swap meet.

What began as just a few individuals meeting over a mutual hobby has grown large enough to spill out of its original location on 25th Street to the Golden Spike Arena, with attendance last year in excess of 300 people. This year marks the 13th annual RC swap meet, and organizers expect a bigger turnout than ever. It’s hoped that the swap meet grows in the coming years to include a presence from RC manufacturers, demos and races.

Utah’s Largest RC Swap Meet is the perfect place for longtime enthusiasts and those wanting to break into the hobby to get information and equipment. Radios and vehicles ranging from as low as $10 up to several hundred are expected to be for sale on April 16 beginning at 9 a.m. 

“For people wanting to get started, this is kind of a smart way to do it. You can buy the equipment fairly cheap; if you realize you don’t really like doing this, you’re not out a lot of money,” Greg Sagen, president of the Falcon RC Club, said.

Simulators will also be available utilizing the same radio equipment you would use to fly, only connected to a computer in a virtual environment, allowing beginners to get a handle on the delicate controls before launching an expensive piece of equipment into the air. 

In addition to the yearly swap meet, the Falcon RC club meets monthly on Hill Air Force Base to discuss the hobby and fly their crafts. Due to the location, access to the general public is limited, but visitors can be escorted on base to participate in a meeting by contacting the club via Facebook.

It is also recommended that hobbyists join the Academy of Model Aeronautics. Membership in the AMA requires a $75 yearly fee but provides participants with a magazine full of useful information and, more importantly, insurance that will cover injury and property damage provided a craft is operating in a safe manner pursuant to regulations. In addition, any aircraft in excess of .55 pounds must be registered with the FAA prior to flying with a one-time $5 registration fee. 

Those interested in joining the hobby are encouraged to attend Utah’s Largest RC Swap Meet where one can find affordable equipment and a wealth of knowledge to get you started. Entry to the swap meet is $4 for ages 17 and up, $2 for ages 12 to 16 and kids 11 and younger are free. Vendor tables are $30 or $25 each for two or more.