Pictured below are the remnants of my first two R/C gliders. I found them in the loft of one of my mom’s storage buildings. I had no idea she kept them.

The blue and white one is a Top Flite Metrick. It’s a pretty advanced design with a full flying elevator and polyhedral wings with an advanced airfoil. They attached to the fuselage with a pair of connecting rods instead of rubber bands like most designs. It’s difficult construction for a beginner. Get any of the angles even slightly wrong and it will fly funny. I wish I could remember how I crashed it. Here’s the picture from the box:


The purple and white one was a Goldberg Sophisticated Lady. This was a much simpler design with a one-piece, flat-bottomed wing. These are so much easier to construct. All you need is one big flat surface. I used an old door. The fuselage was a simple tapered box. The only advanced design feature was the T-tail, but even that was simple to construct.

I smashed the Lady my first time slope soaring. If you’ve never heard of this, it’s flying in the updraft created by a hill facing the wind. I was trying to avoid the power lines at one end of our hill, over-corrected and rolled too far. I might have made it if the wind hadn’t died. The Lady just fell out of the sky and landed on her left wingtip, crushing the structure. I took the opportunity to move up to powered flight.

Between the two, the Lady was a much better plane for a novice builder and pilot. The Metrick was a lot more difficult to build, but would reward an advanced pilot with much better performance.


It was neat to find them and see how much my building skills have progressed since then.

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