How to Buy a Balsa Wood Airplane

Your Guide to buying the best Balsa wood airplane


This buying guide provides an overview of the factors to consider when purchasing a balsa wood airplane. It covers the types of balsa wood airplanes available, the features to look for, and tips for selecting the best model for your needs. We also discuss the safety considerations associated with building and flying balsa wood airplanes. With this information, you can make an informed decision and find the perfect balsa wood airplane for your needs.

Key features

  1. Ability Level - Look for an airplane model that matches your skill level. Balsa wood airplanes range from beginner to expert, so make sure you select one that fits your experience and knowledge.
  2. Construction Quality - Inspect the quality of the construction. Look for wood that is free of any knots or blemishes. Also check for smooth joints and connecting surfaces.
  3. Covered Wings - Many balsa wood airplanes come with covered wings for added durability and a more realistic appearance. Consider one with covered wings if you plan to fly your plane frequently.
  4. Size and Weight - Pay careful attention to the size and weight of the airplane. These factors will impact the plane’s performance in the air.
  5. Motor - Depending on the type of airplane you choose, you may need to purchase a motor. Look for one that is lightweight and powerful enough to get your plane in the air.
  6. Price - Lastly, take into account your budget. Balsa wood airplanes can range in price depending on the model you choose.

See the most popular Balsa wood airplane on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Lightweight - Balsa wood airplanes are lightweight and can easily be flown in lighter winds.
  • Inexpensive - Balsa wood airplanes are an inexpensive option for those looking to get involved in the hobby.
  • Relatively Easy to work with - Balsa wood is a relatively easy wood to work with and shape.
  • Ready to Fly (RTF) - Many Balsa wood airplanes are available as ready to fly (RTF) models, so you don't need to worry about building or assembling the plane.


  • Severability - Balsa wood is lightweight and has a tendency to be easily damaged.
  • High Cost - Balsa wood is more expensive than other materials used to make plane models, such as Styrofoam and plastic.
  • Sudden Humidity Changes - Balsa wood is susceptible to sudden changes in humidity, which can cause swelling and warping of the wood.
  • Fragility - Balsa wood is very fragile, so it is prone to denting, chipping and cracking.
  • Difficult to Paint - Balsa wood is difficult to paint due to its porous surface.

Best alternatives

  1. Foam Plane Kits - These kits include pre-cut foam shapes and easy-to-follow instructions to make a basic model plane.
  2. Wooden Plane Kits - Similar to the foam kits, these kits include pre-cut wooden pieces and instructions to make a basic model plane.
  3. Ready-to-Fly Model Airplanes - These airplanes come already assembled, and typically require minimal setup to get them flying.
  4. U-Control Model Airplanes - These planes come pre-assembled and are typically powered by a small engine or electronic motor. They require a much higher level of skill to fly than ready-to-fly planes.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Balsa Wood Sheets - thin sheets of balsa wood used to cut and shape the plane
  • Wood Glue - used to join pieces of balsa wood together
  • Sandpaper - used to shape and smooth the wood
  • Wood Filler - used to fill in any gaps or imperfections in the surface of the wood
  • Ruler - used to measure and draw straight lines and shapes
  • Tools for Cutting - used to cut the balsa wood into the desired shapes for the airplane such as a hobby knife, razor blade, or saw.
  • Paints or Stains - used to give the plane a unique look and color
  • Decals or Stickers - used to add decorations and details to the plane
  • Covering Film or Fabric - used to give the plane a polished, professional look and finish.

Common questions

  1. What is a balsa wood airplane?
    A balsa wood airplane is a type of aircraft that is constructed with lightweight balsa wood as the primary material. The balsa wood is usually covered with a lightweight paper or fabric to help protect it from the elements.
  2. What tools are needed for constructing a balsa wood airplane?
    The main tools you need to construct a balsa wood airplane are a hobby knife, sandpaper, glue, and a ruler. A pair of scissors will also come in handy.
  3. Can balsa wood airplanes be flown outdoors?
    Yes, balsa wood airplanes can be flown outdoors as long as the wind is not too strong. You also need to make sure there are no obstructions in the area before launching.
  4. What kind of fuel does a balsa wood airplane use?
    Balsa wood airplanes typically use rubber bands and a propeller to create forward motion. However, some models can be powered by electric motors or nitro fuel.
  5. How do I control the flight of a balsa wood airplane?
    Balsa wood airplanes are typically controlled using a joystick or other type of RC controller. The controller is used to adjust the aircraft's speed, direction, and altitude.
  6. What safety measures should I take when flying a balsa wood airplane?
    It's important to always wear protective eye and ear gear when flying a balsa wood airplane. It's also important to fly in an open, clear area away from any people or animals.


A funny fact about balsa wood airplanes is that they are surprisingly durable. You can fly them for several hours without any damage to the plane. In fact, some balsa wood model airplane enthusiasts have even flown their planes for days or weeks at a time! Of course, this would require regular maintenance and recharging of the batteries, but it still shows the incredible resilience of balsa wood planes. Source

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.