Rescuing your Stuck RC Plane: Tips and Techniques

Rescuing your Stuck RC Plane: Tips and Techniques

Getting an RC plane stuck in a tree is an all-too-common phenomenon that can turn out to be a real bummer for hobbyists. While it may seem like a minor problem at first, retrieving an RC plane from up high can be both time consuming and expensive. Besides, there is always the risk of damaging the plane while trying to free it from the tree. Therefore, it is essential to learn how to safely retrieve your RC plane without causing any damages. In this guide, we will provide you with all the necessary skills and tips to help you retrieve your precious RC plane without compromising your safety or the plane’s integrity. We will highlight various techniques that you can use, considering factors such as height, weather conditions, and terrain, among others. By the end of this guide, you will no longer have to dread losing your RC plane to some tree branch because you will be well-equipped with the right knowledge to retrieve it no matter the situation.

Assess the Situation

The first step in getting your RC plane out of a tree is assessing the situation. Here’s what you should consider:

  • The height of the tree
  • The location of the plane in the tree
  • The density of the tree branches
  • The surrounding area
  • The condition of the plane

Once you have assessed the situation, you can choose an appropriate technique suitable for the situation. In case you are not comfortable with the situation, or you lack the necessary equipment and expertise, it is advisable to get help from someone who is experienced in tree climbing. You can also consider professional help if you feel that the situation is risky or dangerous.

In case you are new to the hobby, there are plenty of online resources available on how to retrieve RC planes from trees. Websites like and have active and supportive communities that can offer useful tips and advice on retrieving a plane. Additionally, there are products available such as telescoping poles with hooks, which can be an absolute lifesaver when it comes to freeing a plane from tree branches.

Retrieve the Plane: Techniques

There are different techniques you can use to retrieve your RC plane from a tree. Here are some of the most commonly used techniques:

  • Shake the tree: If the plane is only a few feet up, try shaking the tree to loosen it. This works well if the branch the plane is stuck on is thin.
  • Long pole or stick: Use a long pole or stick to push the plane down from the branches. This technique works well if the plane is within reach.
  • Climbing the tree: If the plane is too high, you can use a ladder to climb the tree or climb the tree yourself. Be sure to wear protective gear and take your time.
  • Use a drone: If you have another drone, you can use it to release the stuck drone by lifting it up.
  • Professional help: If the plane is high up or tangled in thick branches, it may be best to get professional help to avoid accidents.

It is important to always use the appropriate technique for your situation, and prioritize your safety in the process. It is also essential to be prepared beforehand by carrying the necessary equipment and taking the necessary protective measures, such as wearing gloves and long sleeves. Additionally, websites like and offer instructional videos and articles on retrieving RC planes from trees.

How do you get a RC plane out of a tree?

If you have an RC plane stuck in a tree, don’t worry! Here are some tips to help you get it down:

  • First, try using a long stick or pole to try to knock the plane loose.
  • If that doesn’t work, try throwing a weighted line over the branch and using the rope to shake the branch until the plane falls free.
  • If your plane has landed high in the tree, you might need to use a ladder to climb up and retrieve it.

Remember, safety comes first – don’t take any risks that could put you or others in danger.

If you’re looking for more information or want to buy supplies to help get your RC plane out of a tree, check out hobbyist websites such as Horizon Hobby, which offers a wide range of RC planes and accessories.

Cutting Branches

If your plane is caught in the branches and you cannot free it with any other method, you may need to cut them down. However, this method should only be attempted by those with experience, as it can be dangerous. Here are some safety tips to follow:

  • Wear safety goggles and a helmet to protect your eyes and head.
  • Use a pruning saw or chainsaw, depending on the size of the branches.
  • Cut branches one at a time, starting from the outside, and working inward.
  • Don’t try to cut too much at once. Large branches can be heavy and may cause you to lose your balance.
  • Avoid cutting near the trunk of the tree, as this can damage the tree and make it unstable.
  • Be mindful of power lines or any other nearby objects to prevent accidents.

It is important to remember that cutting branches should be a last resort, and should only be done if it can be carried out safely. If you are unsure about your ability to do so, it is best to seek the help of a professional. Additionally, websites like and offer different types of pruning saws and chainsaws you can purchase.

Should I cut the branches?

Cutting branches is necessary in certain situations, such as when the tree is diseased, damaged, or overgrown. However, it is important to consider the following before cutting branches:

  • Do you have the proper tools and knowledge to safely cut branches?
  • Will cutting the branches harm the tree or affect its overall health?
  • Are there any laws or regulations in your area regarding cutting trees or branches?

If you are unsure about whether or not to cut branches, it is best to consult with a professional arborist or tree service company. They can assess the situation and make recommendations based on their expertise.

If you are looking for more information about tree care and branch cutting, check out websites such as Arbor Day Foundation or Tree Care Industry Association. They provide helpful tips and resources to help you keep your trees healthy and safe.

Let Gravity Do the Work

If your plane is too high up or if attempting to retrieve it could put you or others in danger, it is best to let gravity work in your favor. Here are some tips to consider:

  • Check the weather forecast for high wind warnings. Strong currents can cause your plane to drift away from you, and therefore, you may need to abandon it without risk of hurting yourself
  • Watch the tree and plane carefully. Most often, the plane will fall on its own after a certain amount of time.
  • If the plane doesn’t fall on its own, consider coming back after a few hours. It may have become dislodged from the tree by itself.
  • If the plane is not in an accessible location, it may be best to wait until it falls to the ground. Attempting to retrieve it by any other means could be dangerous.

Remember that safety should always be your primary concern. If you are not able to retrieve your plane safely, it is best to wait for it to fall on its own. You can install a GPS tracker on your RC plane, so you can easily locate it when it falls. Products like The Airplane Locator or Loc8tor Pet Tracker could be solutions to track your RC plane’s location.

Can I fly my RC plane at the airport?

Flying an RC (remote control) plane at or near an airport is not allowed due to safety concerns. Airports have strict regulations to ensure the safety of passengers and airplanes, and flying an RC plane can interfere with their operations. Moreover, flying an RC plane near an airport can cause confusion for pilots, resulting in a hazardous situation.

If you want to fly your RC plane, the best option is to find an open, safe area away from airports, roads, and people. You can also check the regulations and guidelines of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in your country to know the specific rules for flying RC planes.

For more information about RC planes and their regulations, you can visit websites such as, which offers a wide range of RC planes and accessories.

Prevention is Key

As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Here are some tips to prevent your RC plane from getting stuck in a tree:

  • Fly in open areas without trees or near obstacles
  • Check the weather conditions for high winds warnings
  • Use a pre-flight checklist to make sure the plane is in good condition and all necessary precautions are taken
  • Practice your flying skills in a safe and open area before attempting to fly in a more challenging environment
  • Invest in a GPS tracker for your plane to easily locate it if it gets lost or stuck.
  • Use an RC plane with an automatic safety system. The SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology prevents the plane from crashing when it leaves the flight envelope.

By following these tips, you can reduce the chance of getting your RC plane stuck in a tree, and safely enjoy your hobby.

In conclusion, getting an RC plane out of a tree can be a challenging and time-consuming task, but there are methods to retrieve your plane safely. If all else fails, let gravity do the work, and invest in a GPS tracker to locate your plane. Practice flying safely and responsibly to prevent getting your plane stuck in the first place. Remember, safety should always be your top priority.

How can I make my RC plane more stable?

There are a few ways to make your RC plane more stable:

  • Ensure proper balance and weight distribution by adjusting the position of your battery, receiver, and other components.
  • Install gyro stabilization systems that can automatically adjust your plane’s balance in mid-air.
  • Choose a larger aircraft with increased stability, such as a trainer plane or a flying wing.
  • Adjust your control surfaces and reduce the sensitivity of your controls for smoother, more controlled flight.

Additionally, consider upgrading your RC plane with better parts and equipment such as high-performance motors, servos, and receivers. Some websites like HobbyKing, Tower Hobbies, and Horizon Hobby offer a variety of RC plane parts and accessories that can help improve stability and overall performance.


In conclusion, retrieving an RC plane stuck in a tree requires patience, skill and the right equipment. It is essential to follow the guidelines stated in this guide to ensure your safety and the safe retrieval of your RC plane. The most important thing is to assess the situation before you begin the retrieval process, and if you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, seek help from a professional. Remember to take the necessary precautions to prevent getting your RC plane stuck in a tree in the future, and always practice responsible flying.

Finally, if you are not confident in retrieving your RC plane from a tree or if you do not have the necessary equipment, contact a professional. There are many experts in the RC hobby that can help retrieve your plane safely. In addition, several online resources can provide more information and guidance on how to retrieve your RC plane from a tree.

In summary, if you get your RC plane stuck in a tree, the most important thing is to stay calm and assess the situation. With the right equipment and care, you can retrieve your plane safely and continue to enjoy your hobby.