Welcome to the Balsa Workbench

Back in the good old days if you wanted to fly a model airplane you had to build it yourself.  In those days hobbyists would trade advice and building tips at the flying field.  Now most folks simply buy ready-made airplanes, and it can be difficult to find people who know how to build.  I hope this site can help neophytes get started on the right track and avoid a lot of the frustration that plagues new builders.

biplane2

I started building balsa airplanes in 1986.  I would build a plane, try to fly it, repair minor crash damage, and sell it before totally destroying it.  Then I would build another plane and start over.  This was a great way to learn building techniques.  For a couple of years I built airplanes as my main source of income, until inexpensive ARFs put an end to that.

I still build a lot of airplanes.  I fly them for a while and then hang them up for sale at the hobby store, and start building the next one.  Over the years I’ve picked up a lot of simple tricks that make it easy to build a straight, strong, light airplane and do it fairly quickly.

biplane1

I’m not into fancy scale details, so I don’t have much to say about making scale panel lines, tiny rivets and other such details.  What I like best is plain old RC airplanes.  What I want to do with this website is feature my own building projects in articles telling new builders how to put a plane together easily and accurately.  If there’s anything in particular you’d like to talk about, just send me an email.  I welcome comments and questions.

The Balsa Workbench now has a STORE where you can buy laser cut parts for original airplane designs, and you can order laser cut parts for any plan.