E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF – Beginner RC Plane in Review

Embark on an aerial adventure with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e — the beginner-friendly RC plane that’s making waves in the skies and turn beginners into seasoned pilots overnight!! With its innovative SAFE technology, this is not just any model aircraft; it’s your ticket to mastering the art of flight with ease and grace. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to refine your piloting prowess, find out why the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is the trusted co-pilot for your journey to RC excellence. Get ready to soar to new heights and join the ranks of skilled aviators who started with the best. Buckle up, pilot — your ultimate flight experience awaits!

E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF
E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF
Best RC Planes

Welcome to the thrilling world of RC aviation, where the sky is not the limit but the beginning of a captivating hobby. If you’re embarking on this journey, choosing the right aircraft is crucial, and our review of the best beginner RC planes is the perfect launching pad for your aerial adventures. Today, we’re soaring into an in-depth look at the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF, a plane that has become a beacon for beginners due to its balance of simplicity and advanced features.

The Apprentice S 15e is a standout in the beginner’s category, renowned for its gentle flying characteristics and innovative SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology. This trusty trainer has been designed to ensure that your first flight is as memorable as your hundredth. It’s worth noting that the E-flite Apprentice STS 1.5m RTF Basic, a more recent RC plane that promises an equally enchanting flight experience for novices, is based on the solid foundation of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e.

As we prepare for takeoff with this review, rest assured that the insights to come are the culmination of thorough research, expert testimony, and community feedback. We aim to provide you with not just information, but the confidence to decide if the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is the co-pilot you’ve been searching for in your RC flight endeavors.

With our engines warmed up and the horizon in clear sight, let’s embark on an exploratory flight into the essence of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e. Join us as we delve into an “Overview” of this remarkable aircraft, where we’ll uncover what makes it the trusted wingman for countless beginners in the RC community.


The E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE technology is a beacon of innovation in the RC aircraft arena, tailored especially for beginners yet offering enough to engage intermediate pilots. This ready-to-fly (RTF) model emerges as a standout, heralded as Horizon Hobby’s most intelligent RC airplane to date, thanks to its SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology. This feature is a game-changer, providing spatial awareness that safeguards your flight, offering a security blanket to new enthusiasts in the form of flight envelope protection. The technology ensures a smooth flight experience, mitigating the buffeting of windy conditions and granting you control that is both crisp and responsive.

Ease of assembly is a hallmark of the Apprentice S 15e, requiring mere minutes to prepare for its maiden journey. The robust brushless power system compliments its lightweight Z-Foam material construction, which is tough enough to endure the rigors of daily flight without compromising on shape or performance. Post-mastery of the basics, this plane shows its versatility with the capacity for aerobatic maneuvers like loops, rolls, and even inverted flight, and it can even be converted into a floatplane with an additional purchase​.

Beyond its quick assembly, the Apprentice S 15e dazzles at the airfield. Its SAFE technology is pivotal, allowing for angle limitations on pitch and roll, self-leveling, and even assists with takeoffs and landings. Pilots can tailor the SAFE system’s assistance levels as their confidence and skills grow, while the ‘panic’ feature stands by to right the plane to level flight should disorientation occur. The high/low-rate feature adjusts the plane’s responsiveness, enhancing the flight training experience. This multifaceted approach means the Apprentice S 15e can adapt to your growth as a pilot, evolving from a gentle cruiser to a capable aerobatic performer​.

In terms of physical specifications, the Apprentice S 15e sports a wingspan of 59 inches and weighs in at a manageable 49 ounces. It stretches 42.5 inches in length and is priced in a range that reflects its high-value proposition. The plane also comes equipped with a robust set of features including a carbon-fiber wing joiner, steerable nose gear, and factory-applied graphics that don’t just add to its aesthetic appeal but enhance visibility in the sky. The package is complete with a Spektrum DX5e 2.4GHz DSMX transmitter, a 3S 3200mAh LiPo battery, and everything else needed to take flight, encapsulating a thoughtful consideration for the customer​2​.

Given the broad spectrum of features and capabilities, transitioning to the “Why You’ll Simply Love It” section, it’s clear that the Apprentice S 15e is not just an aircraft; it’s a piloting journey packed into a smart, resilient design that will grow with you from your first takeoff to your first aerobatic display. The promise of this plane lies not just in its technology but in the experiences and milestones it will help you achieve.

Best RC Planes for Beginners

Why You’ll Simply Love It

The moment you take the controls of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e, you’ll feel an exhilarating blend of excitement and ease, a testament to its design that’s tailored for the aspiring aviator. This isn’t just any beginner’s RC plane; it’s a mentor that grows with you. From the moment it takes to the skies, the SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology ushers in a level of security that instills confidence. Its forgiving nature doesn’t just protect against the over-enthusiasm of new pilots but also offers the stability needed to master control and finesse in flight.

For the hobbyist who dreams of flight, the Apprentice S 15e is not just a purchase; it’s the start of a journey. It’s the gentle nudge towards achieving those lofty ambitions of piloting, providing a robust platform that’s forgiving to beginners and versatile for the skilled. The intuitive handling means you’ll spend less time worrying about keeping it in the air and more time savoring the thrill of flight.

The beauty of the Apprentice S 15e lies not only in its performance but also in its design. Its sleek lines and bold colors are a sight to behold at the flying field, drawing admiration from fellow enthusiasts. It’s not only about the technology; it’s about the joy and pride of ownership, the shared smiles, and stories with fellow pilots.

But what truly sets the E-flite Apprentice S 15e apart is how it resonates with the pilot’s intentions. It listens and responds with grace, making every flight session a story worth telling. This isn’t just another RC plane; it’s your gateway to the skies, a testament to your dedication to the craft, and a partner in countless airborne adventures.

As we delve deeper into the essence of this remarkable aircraft, let’s pivot to the details that sculpt such a memorable flying experience. The Apprentice S 15e isn’t just loved for its forgiving nature; it’s revered for the nuances that make it a technological marvel in the world of beginner RC planes.

Transitioning smoothly into the intricacies that define this aircraft, we uncover the array of features that make the E-flite Apprentice S 15e a paragon of its class. Let’s explore these attributes in the next section, “Key Features”.

Key Features

Embarking on the journey of RC flight with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is akin to enrolling in an Ivy League of the skies – it’s an experience that’s both prestigious and accessible. The elegance of this aircraft is not just in its flight but also in the features it boasts, meticulously designed for the aviator taking their initial soar or the seasoned pilot seeking a reliable ally in the clouds.

From its quick, no-fuss assembly to the lightweight yet robust Z-Foam™ construction, every element of the Apprentice S 15e is crafted with care. The SAFE™ (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology stands as your co-pilot, providing a safeguard through flight envelope protection, ensuring your plane is stable and secure, even when you’re pushing the boundaries of your flight skills​.

The heart of this bird is its powerful 15-size, 840Kv brushless outrunner motor, providing a pulse of power ready to surge through the skies. This is complemented by the E-flite® 30A Pro Switch-Mode BEC Brushless ESC, ensuring efficiency and responsiveness in power management – a true testament to the plane’s engineering​.

For those moments of anticipation as you prepare for takeoff, the wide-stance tricycle landing gear stands firm, offering a stable foundation and ease of maneuverability on the ground. And when it’s time to take to the heavens, the large, easy-access battery compartment ensures that your power source is secure yet readily accessible for those eager to fly without delay​.

As you advance in your flight journey, this plane grows with you. Its dimensions – a wingspan of 59 inches and an overall length of 42.5 inches – provide a grand presence in the sky, while the substantial wing area offers stability and grace in flight​.

As we pivot from the visible artistry to the inner workings of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e, the technical specifications await to reveal more of the craftsmanship that makes this aircraft a choice par excellence for enthusiasts and connoisseurs of flight.

Technical Specifications

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF is a sophisticated blend of modern engineering designed to provide an intuitive flying experience for beginners and seasoned pilots alike. Here’s a breakdown of its technical prowess:

  • Wingspan: A generous 59 inches (1500mm) ensures stability and visibility.
  • Overall Length: Measuring at 42.5 inches (1080mm), it’s a sizable aircraft without being unwieldy.
  • Wing Area: With 515 square inches (33.2 sq. dm.), it strikes a balance between lift and agility.
  • Flying Weight: At approximately 49.0 ounces (1390g), it’s light enough for easy handling yet substantial enough for solid flight dynamics.
  • Motor Size: The 15-size brushless outrunner motor is the heart of its propulsion, providing efficient, powerful thrust.
  • Battery: It comes with a 3S 3200mAh LiPo battery, striking a balance between weight and performance for prolonged enjoyment.
  • Charger: Included is a LiPo balancing charger, adjustable from 0.5 to 3.0A, ensuring your battery is charged safely and efficiently.
  • Speed Control: A 30-amp brushless electronic speed control (ESC) is pre-installed, which manages the motor’s power draw and speed.
  • Prop Size: An 11 x 8 propeller translates the motor’s power into forward motion with efficiency.
  • Radio: The Spektrum DXe transmitter is included, renowned for its reliability and ease of use.

When it comes to flight duration, pilots can expect a range of flight times depending on conditions and throttle usage, with averages reported between 8 to 15 minutes. This duration is quite standard for planes of this class and is a testament to the balanced design of the Apprentice S 15e.

Moving from the technical details to recognizing the construction and resilience of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is a smooth progression. The technical details provided do more than just ensure a captivating flying experience; they also suggest the quality and meticulous attention to detail invested in the plane’s assembly—a topic we will delve into shortly.

Build Quality and Durability

When embarking on the thrilling journey of RC aviation with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e, it’s not just the flight you’re investing in, but the meticulous craftsmanship that makes it soar. The Apprentice S 15e is a marvel of modern engineering, crafted with a resilience that respects both the beginner’s learning curve and the seasoned pilot’s demand for reliability.

The fuselage is constructed with durable Z-Foam™ material, known for its robustness and excellent impact resistance. This proprietary foam composition isn’t just lightweight, which is essential for any aircraft; it’s also remarkably tough, able to withstand the bumps and bruises that are sometimes inevitable in the life of a training aircraft.

The wings and tail sections follow suit with the same Z-Foam™ construction, providing a harmonious balance of weight and durability. The wing design is bolstered by carbon fiber reinforcements that guard against stress during aerobatic maneuvers and unforeseen rough landings. The Apprentice S 15e’s wings are not just built to last but engineered to help you push the envelope as your skills advance.

Examining the undercarriage reveals a tricycle landing gear system that’s designed for stability and shock absorption. The nose wheel is steerable, allowing for precise ground control, a feature that beginners will find forgiving and experts will appreciate for its responsiveness.

The brushless motor is encased within the fuselage, shielded from the elements, which not only safeguards the internal components but also enhances the aircraft’s aerodynamic profile. This careful integration of parts ensures a longer lifespan for the motor and less maintenance for the pilot.

Aesthetically, the Apprentice S 15e does not disappoint. The plane’s design is sleek, with a bold, high-visibility color scheme that not only looks professional but serves a practical purpose, improving in-flight orientation—a subtle yet critical feature for those just getting to grips with the hobby.

But it’s not just about the materials used; it’s also about how they come together. The fit and finish of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e are evidence of a design philosophy that does not cut corners. Seams are tight and align perfectly, control surfaces hinge with precision, and the overall integrity of the construction speaks volumes about its flight readiness right out of the box.

As we pivot from discussing the sturdy bones of this aircraft, it’s essential to acknowledge that a plane’s worth is measured not just in its resilience, but in how it dances with the wind. The E-flite Apprentice S 15e’s build quality is a promise of durability, but it is in its performance and reliability where that promise is kept. Let’s delve into how this aircraft proves its mettle once it takes to the skies.

Performance and Reliability

When it comes to the performance and reliability of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF, rest assured, this aircraft is designed with the novice in mind, but it soars with the confidence of a seasoned veteran. The brushless motor system provides ample thrust, ensuring that your ascents are swift and your cruising is smooth. Even on days when the breeze is more than a gentle zephyr, the Apprentice holds its own, thanks to the substantial 1.5-meter wingspan that affords stability and easy visibility.

The SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology is the cornerstone of the Apprentice’s reliability. With a trio of flight modes—beginner, intermediate, and experienced—the system actively works to keep your aircraft level and within control limits. New pilots can fly with a safety net, while those with more experience can gradually test their skills with less assistance. This tech isn’t just about keeping the wings level; it’s about building confidence and competency in new pilots.

Moreover, the Apprentice S 15e’s reliability isn’t just in its flight; it’s in its consistency. Repeated takeoffs, landings, and hours of flight time have shown that this model is a stalwart companion for the long haul. Reports from the field emphasize its resilience to common flight mishaps—a testament to the thoughtful engineering behind its construction.

In summary, this plane stands out as a paragon of beginner-friendly performance coupled with steadfast reliability. Whether you’re taking to the skies for the first time or you’re a hobbyist looking to practice some new maneuvers, the Apprentice S 15e is as trustworthy as they come.

But, as with any aircraft, the Apprentice S 15e isn’t without its nuances. In the following section, we’ll weigh its shining qualities against the aspects where it may fall short. Stay tuned as we delve into the pros and cons, ensuring you have a 360-degree view of what to expect from this beloved beginner RC plane.

Pros & Cons


  1. Beginner-Friendly Technology: The E-flite Apprentice S 15e is designed with the SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology, which stabilizes the aircraft and provides a stress-free learning experience for beginners.
  2. Durable Construction: Built with EPO foam, this RC plane is not only lightweight but also durable, making it capable of withstanding minor mishaps. Additionally, the material makes for easy repairs, ensuring the longevity of the aircraft.
  3. Versatile Flight Modes: With three distinct flight modes—Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced—the Apprentice S 15e adapts to the skill level of the pilot, allowing for a gradual learning curve and more sophisticated maneuvering as one’s skills improve.
  4. Comprehensive RTF Package: The RTF (Ready-To-Fly) version of the Apprentice S 15e comes complete with all components necessary to get started, including a Spektrum DXS 2.4Ghz transmitter which is upgradable for future enhancements.
  5. Visibility and Stability: Its considerable wingspan not only makes it more visible in the sky but also allows it to handle winds better, providing a stable flight experience​2​.


  1. Landing Challenges: The built-in barometer designed to assist in flight stability can actually make landing more challenging, especially in beginner or intermediate modes where more landing space is required.
  2. Advanced Mode Risks: Pilots eager to progress to advanced mode may face difficulties and potential crashes if not adequately skilled. The cost of repairs post-crash can be substantial, emphasizing the need for gradual progression through the flight modes.
  3. Additional Costs for Upgrades: While the plane comes with basic flight technology, optional modules like GPS and LAS that aid in landing are available at an additional cost, which may not be deemed necessary or worth the investment by all users.

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e’s combination of user-friendly features and robust design makes it an attractive option for beginners. However, pilots should be aware of the learning curve associated with its advanced features and the potential costs of optional upgrades. As you contemplate the balance between features and investment, let’s segue into the “Pricing and Value for Money” aspect to understand whether the E-flite Apprentice S 15e stands as a wise investment for your aviation hobby.

Pricing and Value for Money

When it comes to purchasing a beginner RC plane, the price tag is often a pivotal factor. The E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF sits at a price point that reflects its quality as an entry-level aircraft designed to offer a complete flying experience right out of the box. This isn’t your makeshift model; it’s a thoughtfully engineered plane with technology tailored to assist new pilots.

By comparing market prices, we find that the Apprentice S 15e is competitively priced, especially considering that it includes the revolutionary SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology, which is akin to having a flight instructor right there with you. This feature alone can save beginners countless hours of potential frustration and dramatically reduce the risk of crash damage — a hidden savings not reflected in the sticker price.

Moreover, the ready-to-fly (RTF) nature of this model eliminates the need for additional purchases. Everything you need to take to the skies is included: a reliable DXe transmitter, a robust power system, a flight battery, and a charger. This comprehensive package ensures that your initial investment equips you with all the necessary tools for a successful and enjoyable flight experience, right from the moment you unbox it.

It’s not just the tangible aspects that add value. The peace of mind that comes with flying a well-reviewed and community-approved model like the Apprentice S 15e is immeasurable. When you factor in the quality of materials, the durability, and the customer support offered by E-flite, it becomes clear that this plane is not just an expense; it’s an investment in a hobby that can bring years of satisfaction and skill development.

In essence, the Apprentice S 15e is more than just an RC plane; it’s a comprehensive flying system that offers significant value for its price, making it a wise and delightful choice for anyone taking the plunge into the world of RC aviation.

Navigating the marketplace for the perfect beginner RC plane can be daunting, yet the E-flite Apprentice S 15e’s blend of user-friendly features and robust design uniquely positions it as an ideal candidate for certain enthusiasts.

Who Should Buy It

Embarking on the invigorating journey of radio-controlled (RC) aviation with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is a rewarding experience that beckons a broad range of enthusiasts. This aircraft is engineered to serve as the quintessential learning platform for neophytes who are taking their initial foray into the skies. The E-flite Apprentice S 15e, with its SAFE technology, offers a forgiving flight experience that instills confidence and ensures a steep, yet manageable, learning curve.

But it’s not solely the domain of beginners. The versatility baked into its design also makes it a suitable choice for the seasoned pilot seeking a hassle-free flying experience. The SAFE system’s multiple flight modes cater to the pilot’s evolving skills, offering a progression path from beginner to intermediate levels.

For the individual whose weekends are earmarked for the serenity of flight parks, or for the parent-child duo yearning to bond over a shared activity, the Apprentice S 15e offers that common ground. Its durable design can withstand the inevitable bumps and scrapes of learning, which is a boon for educators and leaders of youth groups looking to introduce the principles of flight in an interactive manner.

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e is not just a model; it’s a gateway to a hobby that enriches technical knowledge, hones hand-eye coordination, and expands one’s social circles through club memberships and meet-ups. It’s an investment in a pastime that’s as educational as it is thrilling.

As you contemplate the possibility of owning this beginner-friendly yet capable aircraft, it’s paramount to consider several pivotal factors to ensure that your decision to ascend into the RC aviation community is made with clarity and confidence.

In the forthcoming section, “Important Things to Know Before Buying,” we’ll delve into those essential tidbits of knowledge that will arm you with all you need to know before your purchase. This will ensure that the transition from the tarmac of decision-making to the runway of RC flight is as smooth as your soon-to-be maiden flight with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e.

Important Things to Know Before Buying

When considering the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF for purchase, it’s essential to delve into some vital aspects to ensure it aligns with your needs and expectations. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Innovative SAFE Technology: The Apprentice S 15e is equipped with Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope (SAFE) technology, which offers multiple levels of flight envelope protection. This feature can be adjusted or disabled as your skills progress, providing a unique growth path for your piloting abilities. Especially for beginners, the “panic” feature can be a lifesaver, instantly returning the model to level flight if you lose orientation.
  2. Ready-to-Fly Convenience: This aircraft stands out with its ready-to-fly (RTF) status, meaning all essential components—fuselage, tail, wing, landing gear, motor, receiver, and propeller—are pre-installed. This convenience is complemented by the inclusion of a DX5e transmitter, batteries, a 3S LiPo flight battery, and a balance charger, offering a comprehensive package right out of the box.
  3. Ease of Assembly: The Apprentice S 15e requires minimal assembly, with most parts designed to be secured with double-sided tape rather than glue. This not only simplifies the process but also keeps it clean and efficient, reducing setup time to about 20 minutes.
  4. Adjustable Flying Experience: The model allows for a tailored flying experience with features like the high/low-rate control and three different modes from SAFE technology. This means the Apprentice S 15e can adapt to varying skill levels, from beginner to experienced, and offers stability-assisted takeoff and landing, as well as throttle-based climb and descent.
  5. Build Quality and Components: The durable, molded-foam construction and factory-built airframe components ensure resilience against typical flying wear and tear. Its two-piece wing panels with carbon-fiber joiner, steerable nose gear, and snap-in main gear are designed for longevity. Additionally, the colorful, factory-applied graphics, AS3X stabilization, and factory-installed RC components further add to the quality and value of this aircraft​2​.

Before transitioning to the next phase of your journey with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e, it’s paramount to recognize these key facets. With this knowledge, you’re now poised to transition from pre-purchase considerations to post-purchase excitement and preparation. “You Bought It, Now What?” will guide you through the exhilarating next steps of owning your E-flite Apprentice S 15e.

You Bought It, Now What?

You’ve taken the plunge and are now the proud owner of an E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF, an RC aircraft celebrated for its beginner-friendly features and reliable performance. So, what’s next on this exciting journey?

Firstly, take the time to familiarize yourself with all the components that came in the box. Lay them out, ensuring you have every piece as per the manual. It’s a good moment to acquaint yourself with the names and functions of each part, as this knowledge will be indispensable during assembly and troubleshooting.

Next, charge the battery to full capacity. While you wait, this is the perfect opportunity to register your product with E-flite. This could offer benefits such as updates, important information about your model, and support should you need it down the line.

After the Apprentice S 15e is fully assembled, do a thorough pre-flight check. This step is crucial to ensure everything is secure and functioning as it should be. The control surfaces should respond accurately to your transmitter inputs, and the motor should run smoothly.

Now, you’re almost ready to take to the skies. But before you do, take a moment to understand the SAFE technology—know how to switch between modes and what each mode does to aid your flight. Familiarizing yourself with this system will make your flying experience all the more enjoyable.

Finally, before you head out, ensure you’ve chosen a wide-open space for your first flight, free of obstacles and away from crowds. A calm day with minimal wind is ideal, especially for your first few flights.

And remember, while the thrill of flying your new RC plane is undeniable, safety should always be your top priority. With the right precautions and responsible practices, you can ensure that your flying experience is not only exhilarating but also secure. Speaking of which, let’s move to the next order of business: safety. Flying your E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF is about to get even more enjoyable as you learn to do so responsibly, ensuring countless happy landings.

Safety First: Having Fun With Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e Responsibly:

Safety First: Having Fun With Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e Responsibly

Embracing the skies with your E-flite Apprentice S 15e is not just about excitement and advancement in the hobby of RC flying; it’s also about a commitment to safety. This commitment begins with operating your model in vast, open spaces, well away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, ensuring the safety of both you and those around you.

It’s essential to always follow the provided directions and warnings meticulously, especially when handling the support equipment like chargers and battery packs. Remember, keeping all electrical items and small parts out of children’s reach is not just good practice, it’s a necessity.

Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e, while robust, has electronics that can be damaged by water. Avoid flying near bodies of water or in damp conditions to maintain its integrity. And while it may seem evident, it’s worth noting that the aircraft should never be placed in your mouth, as this could lead to serious injury​1​.

Battery management is crucial. Lithium Polymer (Li-Po) batteries, like the one included with your aircraft, are efficient but require careful handling. Never leave the battery charging unattended, and do not charge it overnight. Be vigilant for any signs of damage to the battery, such as swelling or ballooning, and cease use immediately if these signs appear.

A good habit is to perform a pre-flight checklist before every flight. Ensure that your transmitter batteries are fully charged, the aircraft’s batteries are in optimal condition, and the failsafe is correctly set. This will help avoid unexpected incidents during flight.

And now, as we prioritize safety and preparedness, we glide into the next critical stage: setting up for your first flight. This preparation is not just about ensuring mechanical readiness but also about reinforcing safe flying habits, which will serve you and your E-flite Apprentice S 15e well as you take to the skies.

Setting Up for The First Flight

Setting up for the first flight of your E-flite Apprentice S 15e is an exhilarating step toward mastering the skies, but it’s crucial to approach this phase with precision and care. Here’s how to ensure that your aircraft is airworthy and ready to soar.

  • Charge the Battery: The lifeblood of your Apprentice S 15e is its battery. Begin by charging the included LiPo battery to full capacity using the provided charger. While it juices up, use this time to familiarize yourself with the manual’s safety procedures—there’s no substitute for a thorough read-through.
  • Inspect the Aircraft: With the battery charging, turn your attention to the plane. Check the integrity of the wings, fuselage, and tail assembly. Ensure that all screws are snug and that the control surfaces are free of damage and move freely.
  • Install the Wings: Carefully align the wings with the fuselage and secure them as instructed. This step is crucial; the wings must be attached correctly to ensure stable flight.
  • Connect the Controls: Once the wings are in place, connect the control linkages to the corresponding servos. These tiny mechanisms are the key to your in-flight maneuvers, so double-check that each linkage moves smoothly and is correctly adjusted according to the manual’s specifications.
  • Bind the Transmitter: Binding your transmitter to the plane is akin to shaking hands—it’s how they communicate. Follow the manual’s binding procedure to establish a firm connection between your transmitter and the Apprentice S 15e’s receiver.
  • Set the SAFE Technology: The SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology is a standout feature, offering multiple modes to match your skill level. Engage the beginner mode for your initial flight to benefit from stability assistance and angle limits that prevent overcontrol.
  • Perform a Range Check: Before taking off, conduct a range check to verify the transmitter’s effective range and responsiveness. This simple test can avert signal-loss headaches mid-flight.
  • Check the Weather: Ideal conditions for your maiden flight are calm with minimal wind. Even with SAFE technology, gusty conditions can challenge a novice pilot.
  • Final Pre-Flight Check: With the battery charged, installed, and all systems checked, give your Apprentice S 15e another once-over. Ensure everything is secure, the controls respond as expected, and that the battery is properly seated and connected.

With these steps completed, your E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF is poised for its first journey into the blue. But before you take the leap, it’s essential to arm yourself with knowledge and techniques for a successful flight.

As you stand ready to pilot the Apprentice S 15e into its maiden voyage, remember that preparation paves the way for performance. With your aircraft set up meticulously, let’s transition to the art of flying. In the next section, we’ll cover some invaluable tips for flying your E-flite Apprentice S 15e, ensuring your experience is not just thrilling, but also rewarding.

Tips for Flying Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e

Embarking on your flight journey with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e can be a thrilling adventure, especially when you have the right tips and tricks up your sleeve. Here are some expert tips to ensure your flying experience is not just successful but also immensely enjoyable.

  • Start with a Pre-Flight Checklist: Before you take to the skies, run through a pre-flight checklist. Ensure your batteries are fully charged, the controls are responsive, and your aircraft is in good condition. This habit can prevent many common flight issues.
  • Understand the SAFE Technology: The Apprentice S 15e comes equipped with Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope (SAFE) technology. Familiarize yourself with its three modes – Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced. Start in Beginner mode to leverage the built-in stabilizers as you learn the ropes.
  • Choose the Right Environment: For your initial flights, select a wide-open space free from obstructions. Calm days are ideal as high winds can be a challenge for even seasoned pilots.
  • Gentle Control Inputs: The Apprentice is responsive, so use gentle movements on the control sticks. Sharp inputs can make the plane behave erratically. Smooth and controlled inputs will result in graceful flights.
  • Practice Taxiing: Before you take off, practice driving the plane on the ground. This helps you get a feel for how it moves and responds to your commands.
  • Gradual Takeoff: When you’re ready to take off, advance the throttle slowly. Once the plane is moving steadily, apply a slight back pressure on the stick to lift off. Ascend gradually – the Apprentice S 15e is designed to climb smoothly without much input.
  • Maintaining Altitude: Keep your airplane at a safe altitude where you have plenty of time to correct any mistakes. A good rule of thumb is to fly no lower than the height of the tallest object in your flying area.
  • Landing Like a Pro: For landing, reduce your throttle and let the plane glide down, keeping the nose slightly up as it approaches the ground. Practice makes perfect, so don’t be discouraged by bumpy landings.
  • Stay Oriented: Always keep your plane in front of you and avoid flying too far away. It’s easier to control when you can clearly see its orientation.
  • Know Your Limits: Lastly, don’t push the limits of your skills too quickly. SAFE technology is there to assist, not to perform miracles. Take your time to build confidence and skill.

With these tips in hand, you’re poised to experience the gratifying world of RC flight with the Apprentice S 15e. Each session in the air is not just about the thrill; it’s a learning curve towards becoming an adept pilot.

As you master the skies with your E-flite Apprentice S 15e, remember that the longevity of your plane is just as important as your flying prowess. In the next section, we’ll cover the essential maintenance tips to ensure your aircraft remains in tip-top shape, ready for many more flights to come.

How To Care For Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e

How To Care For Your E-flite Apprentice S 15e:

Ensuring that your E-flite Apprentice S 15e remains in pristine flying condition not only extends its life but also enhances your flying experience. Proper maintenance is the key to enjoying the full potential of your aircraft.

Firstly, always start with a pre-flight check. Ensure that all components are secure, and the control surfaces are responsive. Checking for loose screws and misalignments can prevent in-flight mishaps. Post-flight, it’s wise to conduct a similar inspection, looking for any signs of wear or damage.

Battery care is paramount. Always use the recommended charger for your Li-Po batteries and never leave them charging unattended. After flying, allow the battery to cool before charging it, and store it in a safe, fire-proof location. Balancing the cells regularly can also prolong battery life.

Cleaning your plane may seem like a simple task, but it’s crucial. Wipe down the aircraft with a dry cloth after each session, especially if you’ve been flying near water or in dusty conditions. Avoid moisture in the electronics, and if necessary, use a small amount of isopropyl alcohol on a cloth to remove grime from the body.

Periodically, it’s vital to check the integrity of the propeller and nose gear, as these are high-impact areas. If you notice any cracks or significant wear, replace the parts immediately to avoid imbalance or failure during flight.

Lastly, proper storage is as important as in-flight maintenance. Store your Apprentice S 15e in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. This prevents any warping of the foam and keeps the electronics in good working order.

Adhering to these care steps will keep your Apprentice S 15e soaring high, flight after flight. But even with the best care, you might encounter a hiccup or two. In the next section, we’ll navigate through troubleshooting common issues, ensuring that your time in the sky is spent enjoying the horizon, not wrestling with preventable problems.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

No matter how well-designed an RC plane is, flyers may occasionally encounter issues that need troubleshooting. Here’s how to address some common concerns with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF, ensuring you get back to the skies swiftly.

Issue 1: Plane Not Responding to Transmitter First, ensure that your transmitter batteries are fresh and the transmitter is turned on before connecting the plane’s battery. If there’s still no response, rebind the transmitter to the receiver according to the manufacturer’s instructions. It’s a simple process that realigns the communication between your controls and the aircraft.

Issue 2: Aircraft Veering on Ground If your Apprentice S 15e is not maintaining a straight line during takeoff, check for any obstructions in the wheels or misalignment in the landing gear. Adjust the trims on your transmitter for the rudder to ensure it’s centered when the controls are neutral.

Issue 3: Difficulty in Maintaining Altitude When the Apprentice struggles to stay aloft, verify that the battery is fully charged and properly seated. The SAFE technology relies on a good power source to operate correctly. Also, check that the control surfaces move freely and the propeller is securely fastened and undamaged.

Issue 4: SAFE Technology Not Working Ensure that the SAFE technology is activated as per the instruction manual. If the issue persists, recalibrate the gyro settings. Sometimes, after a hard landing or jostling during transportation, the gyros need recalibration to function accurately.

Issue 5: Short Flight Times Short flight times can often be attributed to an aging or poorly charged battery. Always use a quality charger and consider replacing the battery if it’s been in use for an extended period. Remember, battery performance can wane after numerous charge cycles.

When these issues arise, patience is key. Refer to the detailed manual provided with your E-flite Apprentice S 15e for more comprehensive solutions. And remember, part of the joy of RC flying is learning the ins and outs of your aircraft, becoming adept at troubleshooting, and gaining a deeper understanding of the intricacies of flight.

Having navigated through these common hiccups and mastered the solutions, you’ll find your confidence as a pilot soaring. It’s this journey of overcoming challenges and achieving seamless flights that has made our own experience with the Apprentice S 15e truly enriching—a sentiment we’re eager to delve into next.

Our Experience With This Beginner RC Plane

Embarking on the journey with the E-flite Apprentice S 15e was akin to rediscovering the joy of flight through fresh eyes. The unboxing was the first hint that this was no ordinary beginner’s plane. Every piece was snugly fit and protected, promising a quality that you could feel from the first touch.

Assembly was straightforward. Even those of us with seasoned hands found pleasure in the simplicity of putting the Apprentice S 15e together — it was ready for the skies in less time than it takes to enjoy a cup of coffee. The build’s integrity was apparent, with each part clicking into place with satisfying precision, a testament to E-flite’s dedication to quality.

When it came to the maiden flight, the plane performed exceptionally. The SAFE technology was a game-changer; it was like having a co-pilot with an impeccable sense of balance and orientation. For our novice flyers, this tech turned apprehension into confidence, allowing them to focus on the thrill of flight rather than the fear of a crash. For the experts among us, it offered a safety net that allowed for more daring maneuvers with less risk.

The Apprentice S 15e soared gracefully, responding to controls with a crispness that you’d expect from more advanced models. Landings, often the bane of a new pilot’s experience, were noticeably smoother, thanks to the plane’s forgiving design and the intuitive guidance of the SAFE system.

Even after numerous flights, each takeoff was as exhilarating as the first. This RC plane proved not only to be a reliable starting point for beginners but also a delightful experience for seasoned pilots looking to enjoy a stress-free day at the park. It became clear to us that the E-flite Apprentice S 15e is not just an RC plane; it’s a gateway to mastering the skies, an embodiment of what it means to fly for pleasure.

Now, you may be thinking, “That’s all well and good, but why should I trust this glowing review?” It’s a valid question. The integrity of a review is the cornerstone of its value to you, the reader. Let us take you behind the scenes to our process and ethos in the next section, “Why Trust Us?”.

Why Trust Us?

How We Tested

At model-aircraft.com, our testing regimen is as rigorous as it is thorough. We take each RC aircraft through a series of structured flights under varied conditions to assess performance, durability, and ease of use. Our team applies a meticulous approach, examining every detail from wingtip to tail. This method ensures that our insights and recommendations are based on real-world experiences and reliable data.

The Reasons to Rely on Our Expertise

Our expertise is grounded in a profound admiration for aviation history and a dedication to the craft of model aircraft building and RC flying. With decades of collective experience, our team offers an encyclopedic knowledge of aviation, enriched by a vast collection of resources. From detailed guides to safe flying practices and honest reviews, our commitment is to empower our community. Your trust is well-placed with us, as we bring not only skills and experience but also a passionate commitment to the art and excitement of RC flight​1​.

Final Verdict

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF has established itself as an illustrious contender in the realm of beginner RC planes, meriting a comprehensive evaluation for potential aviators.

In essence, the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF is an impressive feat of engineering, adeptly balancing sophistication with user-friendliness. It’s a plane that grows with its pilot, from initial takeoff to complex maneuvers. Priced at $299.99 (at the moment of writing), it stands as a prudent investment for a fulfilling foray into RC aviation, promising not just an aircraft, but an enduring passion for the skies.

For aspiring pilots ready to embark on the aviation journey, the E-flite Apprentice S 15e with SAFE 1.5m RTF is not merely a purchase; it’s a gateway to the boundless realm above, inviting a commitment that is both rewarding and enthralling. Whether you are at the inception of your aviation adventure or seeking to refine your aerial artistry, this RC plane is an impeccable ally. With the robust backing of the RC community and the assurance of quality from E-flite, your decision to take flight with the Apprentice S 15e is one that promises horizons rich with promise and skies abundant with triumph.


What is the SAFE technology in the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

SAFE (Sensor Assisted Flight Envelope) technology is an advanced flight assistance system that provides varying levels of flight envelope protection, making it easier for beginners to learn to fly while offering benefits like smooth flight performance and the “panic” feature for instant level flight recovery.

How durable is the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e is constructed with patented Z-Foam material, offering resilience and durability that can handle everyday flying challenges. It is designed to withstand the rigors of flight training and progression into more advanced flying.

Can the E-flite Apprentice S 15e be converted for water landings?

Yes, the E-flite Apprentice S 15e can be turned into a floatplane by adding the specially designed E-flite Apprentice S Floats, which are sold separately. This adds versatility to where you can fly and land the aircraft.

What are some safety guidelines for operating the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

You should always operate your model in open spaces away from people, vehicles, and traffic. Ensure that all batteries are fully charged and the transmitter is on before powering the aircraft. Avoid water exposure and never operate the model with low transmitter batteries or damaged wiring.

How should the Li-Po battery be charged and maintained?

The Li-Po battery should never be left unattended while charging, and it should not be charged overnight. It’s important to store and charge the battery at room temperature, away from flammable materials, and never use a charger not specifically designed for Li-Po batteries. Always inspect the battery before charging and never charge if it is damaged or showing signs of swelling.

How long does it take to assemble the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e can be assembled in less than an hour, making it convenient for those eager to get started with flying without long setup times.

What are the technical specifications of the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

The aircraft features a 59-inch wingspan and a 15-size brushless outrunner motor. It comes ready-to-fly, with a recommended 11.1V 3S 3200mAh LiPo battery included​​.

Is the E-flite Apprentice S 15e capable of aerobatics?

Yes, once you’ve mastered the basics, the E-flite Apprentice S 15e can perform aerobatic maneuvers such as loops, rolls, and even inverted flight.

What should I do if I lose orientation while flying?

The E-flite Apprentice S 15e is equipped with a “panic” feature that can be activated to instantly return the aircraft to level flight if you lose orientation.

Are there any additional accessories recommended for the E-flite Apprentice S 15e?

For those interested in water takeoffs and landings, the Apprentice S Float Set is an optional accessory. Additionally, it’s always good to have extra batteries for extended flight sessions.


A team of pure enthusiasts, we are deeply passionate about RC planes. With decades of experience, we love to share everything we know about RC planes: product reviews, safety tips, and the latest industry news. We are fueled by a pure passion for RC aviation and commitment to both beginners and seasoned hobbyists alike. Read more…

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