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AMA in Action
As seen in the October 2015 issue of
Model Aviation.

The AMA Plans Service maintains approximately 18,000 individual plans that include Model Aviation (MA) plans, John Pond plans, and Model Builder plans. A physical copy of each set of plans is archived and all are also digitally stored.

Plans can be ordered in their original size, or can be enlarged or reduced to fit your needs. When ordering plans that have been featured in Model Aviation or Model Builder, where applicable, a copy of the article will be included with the plans.

In most cases, plans orders are shipped the following business day after the order is placed. Plans are shipped rolled inside a cardboard container. In the US, they are sent via Priority Mail, arriving at their destination in two or three days.

The AMA Plans Service is also the printing service for the National Free Flight Society and Skybench Aerotech plans.

In trying to preserve the work of many, the AMA Plans Service accepts plans donations. If you are interested in donating plans, please contact the AMA Plans Service for more information.

Beyond providing plans, the AMA Plans Service can also print banners used by many clubs and events.

To learn more about the AMA Plans Service, visit You can also call or email at (800) 435-9262, extension 507, or

With so many plans available, you might be wondering where to start. We have compiled a list of the top 10 plans, based on sales.

Grumman Goose

Designed by Paul Kohlmann

In 1936, the full-scale Grumman Goose was built to transport wealthy businessmen from Long Island, New York, to New York City. By the onset of World War II, these “flying yachts” were serving more pedestrian roles with commuter airlines, the U.S. Navy, and the Coast Guard. Gooses, as Grumman called them, were flown by many nations during the war, including Japan. Grumman stopped production in 1945 after 345 were made, but the Goose lives on. The Goose has been a staple of island-hopping, whether that is along the rugged coast of Alaska or the sunny Caribbean.

Dick Sarpolus’ Thermix ’13

Designed by Dick Sarpolus

Build your own thermal hunter with a nostalgic flare. Based on Frank Zaic’s Thermic series of gliders and sailplanes, Dick Sarpolus introduces a fun and enjoyable Soaring aircraft.

Terry Dunn’s Parallax

Designed by Terry Dunn

Explore asymmetry with an unconventional configuration. The Parallax’s asymmetrical design was inspired by the Blohm und Voss Bv 141 and Rutan Boomerang. Both of these designs are proven successes, yet their unconventional configurations make one question how they can even fly in a straight line.

Mark Rittinger’s Super Sportwin

Designed by Mark Rittinger

This sleek, twin-motor electric is built for speed. The Super Sportwin is not merely a scaled-up rendering of the original Sportwin. It’s an entirely new model, designed from the ground up, using the general shapes of the Speed 400 version.


Designed by Mark Rittinger

Relive the excitement of post-World War II racing. With a top speed of 426 mph, the full-scale Kingcobra was one of the fastest aircraft of its time. Add in its cannon’s firepower, and it was also deadly. Following WW II, there was a surplus of wartime aircraft. A leftover fighter could be purchased for $1,500 and some still had full fuel tanks! With the return of air racing in Cleveland, many chose to hot-rod their WW II fighters, such as the P-63 Kingcobra.


Designed by Dan Grotzinger

Build this electrified version of a Vintage RC design. It is a pleasant airplane to fly, agile in maneuvers, and fast at high throttle. It slows down nicely for landing with no bad habits.

Curtiss-Wright CW-1 Junior

Designed by Ernie Heyworth

A Golden Age classic turns out to be a natural for electric power. This airplane was developed in 1929 and became the most popular flivver-type airplane of the early 1930s during the Great Depression. The Junior was easy to fly. It had a low stall speed, could land in small farm fields, it had a metal frame, and it had good visibility for photo surveying. Air show pilots loved this airplane because the large wing let them park it into the wind.

Al Clark’s Mysterion

Designed by Al Clark

When designing the Mysterion, Al Clark stated, “I spent much time trying to come up with the best combination of weight, size, aerodynamics, and equipment. I believe the result hits the sweet spot.”

Hughes H-1 Racer

Designed by Jim Young

In 1935, the world’s fastest single-engine, land-based aircraft belonged to Howard Hughes. The H-1 Racer had many new features for its time, including the first use of hydraulically actuated landing gear. Howard achieved his goal of setting the world speed record of 353.322 mph in it. Build and fly your own version of the Hughes H-1 racer.

Golden Era 60 Bipe

Designed by Fred Randall

Two wings are as much fun as one. With its 900 square inches of wing area, this model can comfortably cruise at 65% power. Coordinating the turns is unnecessary when the speed is kept up, but in the wind it likes slight rudder mixed in the same direction as the aileron input. Elevator in a turn, whether it’s an inside or outside turn, can crank the biplane around as tightly as the pilot wants, if the engine power is willing.


I think AMA should consider sending digital versions of plans by email to buyers at a reduced price to be printed locally by the buyer. This could reduce AMA's workload and expenses as well deliver plans more quickly.

If the AMA supplied pdf copies of the plans they would quickly end up on sites like Outerzone. Since the AMA plans service generates income for the AMA, it's not in the AMA's best interest to provide pdf copies of the plans.

Even if your intentions are just to print a copy to build from, I assure you that you are in the minority. Before they sold a dozen pdf copies of any plan it would be posted on a free site online. Knowing that, they aren't liable to start e-mailing pdf plans to anyone, now, or in the future.

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