There are a dozen different classes of radio sailing yacht raced. Some are strict one-design i.e. all the boats are the same, whereas others are development classes, where the boat designs are all different shapes but are nominally the same speed. Here at Wanderers we race two one-design classes - the Dragonforce65 (65 cm long) and the Dragonflite 95 (95cm long).
The DF Concept was initially conceived quite a few years back by John Tushingham and Mike Weston who had a desire to produce an affordable radio sailing yacht which sailed well, had all the tuning aids that a larger radio yacht had and that was available off the shelf so that fleets could grow quickly.
The concept came to fruition in 2013 with the DF65 Produced by Joysway Hobby Co in China. The DF65 is an affordable competition class yacht that can be enjoyed by serious competitors and non-serious hobbyists alike. Sleek lines and competition-developed sails make the DF65 outperform yachts that would be 10 times the price. There are more than 15,000 DF65s sailing around the world.
Whilst the DF65 was finding its feet John Tushingham was approached again by Joysway to produce a large radio yacht- the DF95. The first boats were sold in 2016. The DragonFlite 95 is constructed of several cutting edge components and composite materials not found in similar priced RC yachts produced by any other manufacturer. With carbon fibre keel fin, advanced design keel bulb, shroudless keel step, one piece carbon mast and mylar sails this all new racer has the kind of light wind performance most other radio yachts can only dream of. There are now more than 10,000 DF95s sailing, and the numbers are growing rapidly.
Where to buy a boat:
Both the DF65 and DF95 are available from Hobby Warehouse in a complete kit form for about $250 and $500 respectively, and are reasonably easy to assemble; see our pages on Suppliers and our Buying Guide. You will also need 8 AA batteries and you are ready to sail. Sometimes there are second hand boats for sale on Gumtree, eBay etc or try our Classified ads . The club secretary or other members may know of one of the club's members who has one they may wish to sell. The Australian Radio Sailing website also has a comprehensive list of boats for sale. Many of these will be based in the Eastern States. ARYA Classifieds
For either class, we suggest beginning with the standard kit and then build up as you learn from experience and others. As you progress you will probably need a couple of different size sails and some form of rechargeable batteries.
When you have your boat you will need to register your hull to get a sail number which can be done through the Australian DF Radio Sailing Association. Membership and hull registration is free. Go to ADFRSA