December 2014 | Vol. XIII - No. 12
Top-10 Most-Wanted Aircraft and Flying Toys
With additional reporting by Chris Lundy and Brenda Ruggiero
The days of playing outdoors are taking a back seat as winter rolls in, but we got retailers to reflect on their best-selling aircraft and flying toys from the summer, so you'll be prepared when the seasons change again. Balsa planes and other gliders remain popular, but innovative remote control aircrafts were hot at some locations too. You can learn about all of the Top-10 aircraft and flying toys below.
*No manufacturer paid to be included in this list. All products listed were designated by editorial staff without regard to the company's relationship with TOYDIRECTORY.com/TDmonthly Magazine.
When kids stomp on the launch pad, a blast of air propels the Stomp Rocket over 100 feet into the air. This kit comes with four glow-in-the-dark foam rockets.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.6 out of 5 stars from 291 reviews on Amazon.com. PROS: Simple to use, no assembly, rockets fly high, and foam construction of rockets doesn't damage people or property. CONS: Could use a sturdier base and wingnut/screw connection.
— In an August 2010 TDmonthly survey of 43 retailers, three cited Stomp Rockets as an overall top seller.
— Stephanie Dupuy of Playville in Covington, La., told TDmonthly in a November 2011 survey that their best selling flying toy is Stomp Rocket. They sell between 12 and 18 each month, depending on the weather.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 29750 (added 7/26/2010)
Sub-micro size. 100% factory-assembled, test-flown and ready-to-fly right from the box. Unique rotor head designed specifically to provide inherent stability of a coaxial helicopter, but provide the agile control of a single-rotor helicopter. Factory-installed 5-in-1 control unit with Spektrum™ 2.4GHz DSM2®-compatible receiver, main motor ESCs, mixer, gyro and fully-proportional servos. This model is one of the many available for the Phoenix RC Flight Simulator.
— Diane Gervais from Amato's Toy & Hobby in Middletown, Conn., told TDmonthly in a November 2014 survey that Horizon Hobby is their store's best-selling brand of flying toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 37065 (added 11/24/2014)
Made of genuine balsa wood. Rubber band powered. Easy to fly.
— Mary Porter Green, owner of The Curiosity Zone in Ashburn, Va., told TDmonthly in a November 2011 that Balsa airplanes are among her best selling flying toys.
— Geoff Pendexter, owner of Whirlygigs in Brentwood, N.H., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that they sell about 15 of these planes each month, making them a best selling aircraft toy in the store.
— Gregory Faith, owner of Hobby Town USA in Nashua, N.H., told TDmonthly in a February 2013 survey that these gliders were their best selling wooden toy.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 33145 (added 11/9/2011)
Vectosphere Uncrashable Drone Plane by WESTMINSTER INTERNATIONAL CO.
Other products from WESTMINSTER INTERNATIONAL CO.
A flying toy that you can control by remote! Coated in a durable, light-weight flight cage to protect against collision. 4-way directional flight leaves the sky as the only limit.
— Helen Santosuosso, owner of Village Toy Shop in North Easton, Mass., told TDmonthly in a November 2014 survey that the Vectosphere from Westminster Toys is one of their store's top-2 best-selling flying toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 37066 (added 11/24/2014)
Air Powered Light Up Soccer Disc by Can You Imagine
Can You Imagine presents the Light-Up Air Power Soccer Disk, the amazing new disk that turns nearly any smooth surface into a sport court, indoors or outdoors. Use it on low-pile carpeting, wood floors, sidewalks and driveways there's just no end to the ways you can play.
— Helen Santosuosso, owner of Village Toy Shop in North Easton, Mass., told TDmonthly in a November 2014 survey that the Light-Up Air Power Soccer Disk is one of their store's top-2 best-selling flying toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 37067 (added 11/24/2014)
Sky Scrapers soar over 100 ft. Includes: 3 Orange disks and Sky Scraper launcher.
— Paula Bolte, owner of Imaginations Toy & Furniture Co. in Blacksburg, Va., told TDmonthly in a November 2014 survey that Sky Scrapers from Aeromax is one of their store's best-selling flying toys.
Awards: 2014 TDmonthly Magazine Top Toy Award
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 37068 (added 11/24/2014)
Designed to resemble a hot air balloon, this whimsical nylon kite features a durable but lightweight fiberglass frame.
— Five of 43 specialty retailers told TDmonthly in May 2010 that kites are a best seller. Mike DiAndrea, manager of Hardware Center Inc. in Paoli, Pa., which stocks Premier Kites, cited sales of 65 kites in April 2010.
—"They have a really good quality," said Ginger Milligan, co-owner of Fantasy Island Toys in Fairhope, Ala., in 1Q 2011.
— Teresa Derry, owner of Annie's Toy Chest in Cocoa, Fla., told TDmonthly in a November 2014 survey that Premier Kites is their store's best-selling brand of flying toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 28775 (added 6/7/2010)
Throw, glide, and catch. The red and yellow Hand-Launch Glider "Extreme Team" provides an opportunity to have fun while being active outdoors. Made with an ultra-light material, this stable glider can even be used to play catch. The Hand-Launch Glider also comes with a Playmobil pilot. Dimensions: 18.1 x 19.7 inches (L x Wingspan). Recommended for ages six to ten. Suggested Retail Price: $19.99. Warning. Choking Hazard. Small parts. Not for children under 3 years.
— In a November 2013 survey, two out of 10 retailers told TDmonthly that Playmobil Gliders are a best-selling flying toy.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31536 (added 1/21/2011)
Unique Hand Powered Launcher Sends Planes Soaring Up to 30 Feet. Perfect for indoor and outdoor flight. Adjustable wing flaps for incredible aerodynamic stunts. Realistic jet engine sounds at take off. Set includes launcher and three planes. Batteries needed for sound only.
— In a Fall 2012 survey, 2 out of 12 retailers told TDmonthly that Snap'n'Soar was the best selling aircraft/flying toy in their store.
— In a November 2013 survey, two out of 10 retailers told TDmonthly that Kid Galaxy Snap and Soar is a best-selling flying toy.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 35429 (added 11/5/2012)
Everything kids need to fly like a pro, indoors or out. Our three only-from-Klutz, rubber band powered airplanes have been carefully engineered for coolness, from the extra-large Firebird (an impressive 19-inch wingspan), to the acrobatic Lightning Looper (it really loops), to the Shooting Star (which makes such tight turns kids can fly it in the living room). Simple directions explain how to assemble the planes from the included parts and, just as importantly, how to fly them for maximum performance. And by experimenting with the variations in the book, junior aviators will learn basic principles of aerodynamics and physics.
— Mary Porter Green, owner of The Curiosity Zone in Ashburn, Va., told TDmonthly in a November 2011 survey that Klutz flying books are her best selling flying toy.
— In a November 2013 survey, Mary Porter Green, owner of Curiosity Zone in Ashburn, Va., told TDmonthly that they sell several of these books each month.
— In a December 2013 survey three out of 10 retailers said that Klutz made their best-selling books.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 33142 (added 11/9/2011)
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