Model Airplane News
RICH URAVITCH: DID YOU KNOW?
A former USAF “Sierra Hotel” pilot, Rich worked at Fairchild Republic and joined the A-10 team as Aircraft #30 rolled off the line. He also was logistics program manager on the T-46 program. We caught up with Rich for a little model talk. Here’s what we learned.
Can you tell us how you got started and with what type of planes you built back then?
RU: I got started in the hobby building Strombecker solid display models. I have fond memories of a Globe Swift. No vacuum-formed or injection molded parts back then; these came later with the Monogram Speedee-Bilt and Superkits, which I lusted after and spent lunchless school days to fund the kit acquisition.
What was your first RC model?
RU: It was a Babcock Breezy Jr. with a Babcock Magic Carpet receiver, Magic Wand transmitter and compound escapement. A Wasp .049 gave way to an O.K. Cub .074, which took the Breezy to its final resting place, one of those undisclosed locations somewhere that have now become shopping malls.
Why did you decide on the Cessna 310B for your latest project?
RU: I guess I’ve always liked the airplane. To me, the straight tail “A” and “B” models were the best-looking of the series. My model was originally going to be finished in a U.S.A.F. U-3A “Blue Canoe” scheme until I remembered the adventures of Sky King, did a little web research and found lots of interesting information. The “Songbird” colors were attractive, the airplane had widespread recognition through the popular TV serial of the day and it would translate well to model form.
What impresses you the most about our hobby today?
RU: I really am amazed at the quality and sophistication of the models I see today. The present day ARF models that would have been very competitive in the Sport Scale class of 20 years ago and now, scale competition models that are flown routinely, are true museum pieces. The molded-foam EDF models are amazing, too.