SEN 1968

Table of Contents - SEN 1968

  1. In the Press
  2. Real Prob?
  3. North American Cup Update
  4. Congrats
  5. Steps on a Pathway
  6. Dilly's POV
  7. Perf Reduction
  8. 20 Year Old Dino
  9. A Bat speaks
  10. Buddy's POV

In the press 

Interesting article about doing something ..

A couple of years back I had the opportunity to talk with AMA president. He said that the AMA and the FAI were interested in working together on youth and educations programs.  Here the AMA blog quotes from the CIAM-Flyer on this kind of activity.

What is the real problem?

I have been following the posts in SEN about the suggested proposal to change performance in each of the three F1 events. I only fly F1B so I will only talk about what I see and know in that event. There is mention of these so-called proposals to reduce performance and it’s still not clear to me as to why we need them. What am I missing? Is it for the sake of the contest directors or is it because the models have been flying off of the fields? Or is it that too many people are making the flyoffs now so it is getting harder to manage? Many discussions have been written about just these things and yet nothing is clear as to what the true and specific “problem” is that we are trying to fix. 

I’d like to point out that most of us fly models that are made in the Ukraine by the vendor of our choice and they have been made there for 20 plus years from what I understand. I also understand that in those twenty years, not much has been modified to the basic overall characteristics of the model. Back then we had DPR, VIT, VP, etc. and we didn’t have any issues or reason to change the performance then, so why are we suggesting it now? Aren’t we flying the same basic models that we did 20 years ago? What has changed to cause this sudden need for reduction of performance? The only real change has come with the addition of electronics but RDT’s and altimeters have nothing to do with increased performance.
What has changed over the past several years has indeed been the electronics, but not the ones in our models and I think this is the core of our problem if there really is a problem. We have to come to design, use and depend on a variety of electronic thermal detecting devices that help us pick air. To me this is what has evolved over the years to get us to the point of where we are now. More people are maxing out because of the increased technology in thermal devices, it’s not that the models are getting better people are getting better at picking air because of these devices. Wouldn’t it be simpler to not allow electronic thermal detecting devices rather than trying to reduce performance of the models we’ve come to enjoy flying and have been flying for many years without issues? If we are going to go backwards in time, eliminate the one thing that will have an impact on performance without having to modify our models, eliminate thermal detectors that will make a huge impact on all of us.
There’s also mention that if we reduce performance more people would come into our hobby, as though we have proof there are people just waiting in the wings for things to change so they can either come out for the first time or come back to the hobby because they couldn’t keep up with the price and technology of today’s planes. I want to know who these so called people are. Where are they? Why aren’t we hearing from them? Or is this just an assumption of things to come? With this logic we penalize everyone in hopes of bringing in a few.

It just doesn’t make any sense to me that we are trying to change something that has been working for years in hopes that it’s going to make things better. But again I ask, better for whom? I think if we change things we will most likely see more people getting out of this hobby than coming into it. There are so many ways to make this work none of them includes reduction of performance of the model. 

Marty Schroedter

North American Cup Update

From:     tony mathews
Please post the link to the North American Cup Live scoring results on SEN:

I'd like to ask those following along at home to sign the guestbook and
leave their comments and/or suggestions so that we can learn how to improve
the process for next year.

I'd also like to remind our contestants that like the Kiwi Cup, The North
American Cup will deviate from standard FAI rules with no pole positions
but a flight line with first come first served locations available.
I'd like to arrange the flight line so that the F1C models are located
downwind of the F1B and F1A events to avoid any potential mid air
I will also be patrolling the flight line and will be doing random checks
of FAI markings/numbers on models. Our sportsmen have been warned!

Tony Mathews

Congrats to my old flying buddies

Congrats to the life membership recipiants!  A great and deserving  bunch.
keep flying,
Jim Trego

Steps on a Pathway


The AMA events are the stepping stones to FAI competition. Its like dirt
track is to NASCAR, like a century (100 miles) is to the Tour de France,
like a 10K is to a marathon.

1/2A gas = beginners F1P/J
A gas/classic/nos = beginners F1C

P-30 = Beginners F1G = beginners F1B
Nostalgia rubber = beginners F1B

Classic towline = beginners F1A, F1H

If you look at classic gas and nostalgia gas you often see old F1C designs.
In classic towline many of the models are old F1A designs. Nostalgia rubber< /span>
is full of pre-autosurface F1B's.

Evidence indicates that there is little if any movement upward from these
events to FAI, rather there is slight movement downward particularly as
modelers age. If your premise or the British proposals were viable, there
should be a clamoring for space in these lower tech events. To the
contrary, except for P-30, participation in these AMA precursor events is
also weakening.

What we could do is propose changes to the AMA events, renaming them
Beginners F1A,B,C and see if there is a rush to participate.


Dilly's POV

SEN Item
From:     Martin Dilly
I thought there was to be an embargo on rules discussions till after The Great Gathering, but it now seems not.

So-o-o-o, a few thoughts on some of the points made in the past few weeks.

First, it was suggested the wow factor would be reduced if performances were to be decreased. It’s only a reduction if you’re used to the present models. Someone seeing Leon Shulman’s Banshee for the first time would certainly be wowed, after an age of models with cabins and 5 degree climbs. I think any reduction of wow can safely be ignored.

Second, the UK proposal on keeping hold of the towline. How on earth could that ever be enforced? By the time they launch flyers might have run a quarter of a mile from the timekeepers, who often find it hard enough for them to see when ‘their’ model is launched without having to keep one eye on the guy towing it as well. There seem to have been at least three iterations of what the UK FF technical committee is actually proposing; one of them would require glider flyers to be holding the towline not more than one metre from the lower end when the model is released. Again, how was that ever to be policed?Apart from anything else, forbidding line release can be dangerous, whether to other people or to their models.

Third, the UK proposal requiring a two-handed launch for F1B… As written there’s vast scope for argument and for slo-mo video replays as arguments arise about one hand letting go slightly before the other. If the intention is that flyers should hold the propeller with one hand and the model with the other, then why on earth not say so?

As far as I know, nobody in the UK who flies F1 classes was consulted before these proposals were formulated by the UK free-flight technical committee, apart from the two or three F1 Flyers on that committee.



Performance reduction

From:     Frédéric ABERLENC

In answer to the ping pong ball proposal I have some other ones:
-Socker ball instead of ping pong ball, It will be more efficient.
-suppression of the right wing
-only symetric airfoil
-thickness of rudder must be more than 20 mm

regards Frederic

a 20 year old Dino ?

Thank you Leslie.
But since you are in con tact with many countries on the committee, can you please explain the problems to be solved.
I understand that organizers don't want to stay another day to finish a contest the next morning.. This is a problem granted.
But there are ways to cut down numbers in flyoffs without destroying the events.
I keep hearing small fields, models go too far. That has always been the case for ever.. It's what we do. We deal with it. Now, the last one out of sight is winner. Not fair and has happen to all of us.. But the flyoffs procedure can be adjusted to fix this.. Lots of workable ideas out there.
And technology is close to fixing that problem w GPS and Altimeters. This cures so many problems and Massimo from Italy and others are close to solving this problem with a stand alone device.. Very exciting for the future.. No more timer problems.. Small fields with line of site issues back in play again. Of course we will need permission to fetch our models, but think of the possibilities that this technology opens up.
Now, killing Technology to save the events is not the answer. If that was the problem we would all be flying old timers.
That is not the problem. In F1b most people fly Alex's model, or Igors , or Stefans. Alex model design is 20 plus yrs old.. Same wing wigler, same DPR, same VIT. He added a etimer. Wow, what technological boom. Does it add more time to model. NO! Does it make it easier to fly? Not really. Well you don't have to wind timer. Wow. Is it convenient to use. Absolutely.. So where's the technology that killed this event. My designs also 20 yrs old, same old crap I fly once ever few years. F1a and F1c have had a jump, but these can be fixed easily without throwing everyone's models away.
Just be careful what u wish for. Technology is why we do this, not the other way around. If that were true we would all be flying old timers..
Everyone needs to state there ideas so we can have a consensus.. Don't think if you don't say anything that what you don't want WONT HAPPEN. It may!
Thermals., Michael Achterberg

A Bat speaks

From:     Steve Helmick
SEN- I find it somewhat humorous that F1 classes are still referred to as "modelling"! OMG, how many build F1 class airplanes at home, and only for themselves? Very few, it appears. It seems to me that a major shift happened when the BOM was dispensed with (as unenforceable, IIRC).

For those who commented about increasing the GVW in the current specifications...increased weight allows and demands further technical developments, to regain performance lost...more flapping, more folding, more shifting, etc. Consider what would happen if minimum GVWs were instead reduced. You may remember the old axiom "Simplicate and add lightness"? What might happen if the minimum weight was reduced? Would some start flying shorter models with less complications....and actually build their own? Thermally, Steve O'Bat


From:     Douglas Galbreath
This is Dukie again.
A good friend of mine has a suggestion along the lines of what I proposed, and something of this sort may be wise to consider. Even though some in the non-FAI  groups wouldn't want to do this because of flying in rounds, there would be a few. A few is a hell of a lot better than what we're getting now.
Take a look.

Invite "outsiders" to fly in regularly scheduled FAI contests, but allow deviation from the model specifications:

F1A - Any towline glider(no weight rule, no area rule)  but award a 50% bonus for straight-tow and no-bunt launches.  In other words, a 2-minute flight would count as 3 minutes.
F1B - Any rubber-powered model with locked-down surfaces, 40 grams maximum motor.
F1C - Any model with engine displacement less than 0.29 cu in.  7 sec engine, auto-stab and auto-rudder ok.

I don't think that the regular FAI flyer would object to the outsiders winning a trophy from such a contest. However,  AmCup scoring would be for strict FAI models.

Douglas Galbreath
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Roger Morrell