Your guide to onboard stabilization systems
FOR SEVERAL YEARS, ONBOARD STABILIZATION SYSTEMS for fixed-wing planes have seen tremendous growth and refinement and are now used by many competition and sport fliers. For many, they are viewed as must-have equipment. Much more than just fixed-rate gyros used to tame tail-draggers, these new three-axis flight-stabilization systems are programmable and can be used with all sorts of airplanes. From WW I and WW II warbirds, turbine, and e-jet aircraft to sport fliers and unlimited 3D aerobatic aircraft, these compact, easy-to-install units make an amazing difference. Not intended as autopilots, three-axis stabilizer units offer much smoother flight performance. Often described as “switches that turn off the wind,” these units do their job while allowing pilots to retain full control and feel of their airplane while in flight. In a nutshell, three-axis stabilizers are gyro systems with the ability to hold positions relative to pitch, roll, and yaw axis of a model airplane. Depending on their programming, they can automatically and quickly return the model to its preset level-flight orientation while also dampening the effect of wind, greatly reducing the correction commands needed by the pilot.
Here are 11 of our editors’ favorite stabilization units, which will make a big performance difference regardless of the type of plane you fly. You will feel the difference and wonder why you hadn’t installed one sooner.