by: Miles Simmons

Model rolls at a uniform rate through one (1) revolution in either direction. Center is inverted portion of maneuver. Downgrades:
  1. Changes in heading during roll.
  2. Changes in altitude during roll.
  3. Roll rate not constant.
  4. Model does not perform exactly one roll. One Point per 15 Degree Rule.

This maneuver seems very simple, but it can be quite challenging. Most beginners try to perform the roll using a very high roll rate to help maintain heading and altitude. This does help somewhat, but it gives the maneuver a very rushed appearance. It also makes timing extremely critical, with little margin for error. Since the maneuver must be centered on the judges, timing is critical under any circumstances. Lets talks about how to make it look better.

First of all, make certain you are parallel with the runway and flying straight and level. Don't even try to center the maneuver exactly at this point. One thing at a time. Proceed as follows:

  2. Try using less than full aileron travel to give a slower roll rate, which produces a much prettier maneuver. Maintain a constant roll rate.
  3. As the plane approaches inverted, apply a little DOWN elevator - just a short pulse of down. This will compensate for the nose drop due to loss of lift. The amount of down required and the timing will take lots of practice to perfect.
  4. Continue to roll through 360 degrees at the same constant roll rate.
  5. Stop the roll immediately at the completion of the maneuver.

That's all there is to the roll. Now go out and PRACTICE until you get it right. You can do rolls back-to-back (1 upwind, turnaround, 1 downwind, turnaround, repeat) to maximize your practice time. Continue to practice until you can roll your plane without changing heading or altitude. Then start working on centering.

Since this maneuver is performed downwind, wind speed will determine when the maneuver must be started to have the center right in front of the judges. The roll must begin earlier when the wind is stronger. The only way to make it perfect is to burn LOTS of fuel!