TWO friends not only share a passion for radio-controlled model planes (model planes) but inherited the hobby from their fathers.
Muhamad Syafiq Ab Mutallib and Mohd Hafy Johari, both 28, credit their fathers for teaching them to appreciate model planes.
Muhamad Syafiq said that when he was a child, his father would take him to see aeroplanes at Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport (in Selangor) almost every day.
“We would watch the planes take off and land. That is where my passion for aeroplanes started.
“Initially, I wanted to become a pilot but the course was expensive. Later, I came across model planes, which was exciting as well.”
He said it was really satisfying to be able to execute a great take-off when flying the model plane and then land it smoothly.
“It puts a smile on my face each time I am able to pull it off,” he said when met during the Malaysia-Singapore F3K event at Tanjung Senibong near Pasir Gudang, Johor.
Muhamad Syafiq, a drone pilot, said that using a foam sailplane was good for beginners as it was inexpensive and easier to control.
“Sailplanes that are made out of foam are affordable as the price is not more than RM300, including the radio control.
“It is battery operated, runs for about 50 minutes and weighs between 500g and 800g.
“I have taken part in international competitions in China, Hong Kong and Thailand where there are many model plane enthusiasts,” he added.
Meanwhile, Mohd Hafy said his father was an avid enthusiast of model planes.
“I have been playing with model planes for about 20 years now.”
He urged other model plane enthusiasts to join a club or set up one so that they could fly the planes in a safe and controlled environment.
“Unlike other countries, we do not have many model plane flying clubs in Malaysia, which is sad as the sport is growing.
“Joining or setting up such a club can grow the sport even further, help us regulate permits and make it easier to identify areas to fly our planes,” said Mohd Hafy.
He added that he usually flew his model planes in Putrajaya, where he met Muhamad Syafiq and the two have become fast friends over the years.