Combat gliders – EPP flying wings, combat scale gliders, combat techniques

spitfiresWelcome to our combat glider section featuring our flying wings, scale combat gliders and descriptions of our combat techniques!

Combat glider flying wings

Important note:

This was originally created a few years ago so may not be accurate!! [some updates in square brackets].

We mainly fly Venom and Mamba [nowadays Wildthings] flying wing gliders for the majority of our glider combat sessions.

They are fantastically maneuverable and really pick up speed for ‘stukas’ and ‘death spirals’.

Scale (ish!) EPP combat gliders

spitfire-build1We have a couple of scale EPP combat gliders in our ranks (a Messerschmitt 109 and a P51 Mustang) from Leading Edge Gliders, they are very quick! (a bit too quick for my liking but hey!).

We are in the process of making a couple [mine died so now there’s 1] of fairly scale Spitfires to represent old blighty in our combat sessions, we think it’ll be fantastic to have a bunch of vaguely scale WW2 EPP combat gliders belting up and down the slope.

In the past we have made our own 109’s (well ok, Itchy Thumbs did all the cutting…), they looked ok but broke pretty quickly – we have learn a lot since then so the Spitfires should be rather good!

The picture on the right is one of our EPP combat glider spitfires during construction. It’s made out of 2″ & 4″ EPP, spruce spars & trailing edges, balsa wing tips and balsa tail feathers. It looks rather splendid!

Combat glider flying techniques

As well as going hell bent for leather at each other in a random fashion we have developed a few techniques for hitting each other:

General maneuvers rules we use

A rule we follow occasionally is that after a collision the glider still in the air is the winner. However, if it’s clear that the winner has really struggled to stay in the air (i.e. couldn’t really do a roll straight afterwards!) it’s not really considered to be a proper kill. If the kill was clearly set up and properly executed then it does count and a sticker is awarded!

A good tip is to always keep a lot of momentum up when in combat mode, so if you are hit you stand a decent chance of recovering. Similarly is you have a quick opportunity for a strike you can really wallop them!


stukaA deadly dive from a great height… Gain height where you can and then bring the glider into the centre of the slope, kiting* it back into position above you.

Simply lean forwards on the stick until in a terrifying vertical dive, pull out extremely low and fly through the middle of your opponents.

*To kite a glider backwards, gently pull back on the stick being careful not to stall – the wind will blow you backwards.

Death spiral

spiralThis is like a loop performed at a 45 degree angle…

Pick up a little speed and then loop a few times in the general area of your opponents.

You will gradually pick up speed and eventually hit something!


kestralWhen someone is about to launch, hover about 10 metres above the launching area and as soon as they launch dive down and hit their glider while they are trimming their model / getting into the swing of things.

Rather mean, but bloody effective!

Big Dipper

bigdipperWhen slightly ahead of your victim simply swoop up and down through their flight path, the swooping will slow you down a bit and hopefully you’ll bash into them. We find that both pilots start swooping up and down which does look silly but generally ends up in a satisfying thump followed by a ‘wahey’!

Man to man

mantomanSimply land your model, pick it up and whack your opponent on the back of the head with it.



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