Even during the busiest times of my life I have endeavored to maintain some
form of model building activity. This site has been created to help me chronicle
my journey through a lifelong involvement in model aviation, which
all began in Mayo, MD
is another article from the 1960s where its author laments waning
interest in FAI (Fédération Aéronautique Internationale) competition.
Most seem to have concluded that the problem was due to a perception
that the FAI's had adopted overly bureaucratic regulations. They
wanted to simply end participation. Others wanted to add an FAI
"tax" to AMA membership to support team participation in order to
increase participation. Isn't the latter concept the same bass-ackwards
approach that politicians have in the past used - and lots still
do - that fails every time it's tried?
Control Line Capers
By Wild Bill Netzeband
with control line FAI Stunt? From word which filters in,
interest in this event is somewhat less than overwhelming. In Dallas,
George Aldrich showed up for both Round I and II and is now on the
team. The judges were there in force and Bud Tenney was ready to
roll. But both I and II were nil on competition. I also get the
word that Jim Silhavy was unopposed for the Eastern States. California
(Northern) had a fair elimination contest with Ralph Yount overpowering
Bob Palmer for a crack at the Round II festivities. Seems Bob is
semi-permanently installed up there on special assignment.
Question in my mind is "What In Tunket Happened"? In view of
the fact that TR and Speed are extremely quiet, we are in danger
of fluffing off. Our FF teams were picked from enthusiastic competitions
and look where they ended up. Advertising has been slack if not
We asked Bud Tenney for his thoughts on the
matter and quote the following:
"In the past two years, the
FAI control line elimination contests have been very sparsely attended,
even to the point of being ridiculous and farcical. It is evident
that no one is interested, or else no one is willing to take on
the work of holding contests.
"I assembled a contest crew
for two Round I eliminations and one Round II, keeping them away
from church and family activities. For these three efforts, a total
of six contestants showed up. Therefore I am in favor of eliminating
the control line FAI activity unless more interest is shown. If
it is not eliminated, I believe that advance paid registration should
be required for both Round I and Round II.
"For that matter,
I have informally proposed that each AMA member be required to pay
an additional $4 fee to obtain an FAI endorsement on his license
card at the time he buys his license. Without the endorsement, he
would be ineligible to compete in FAI elimination contests. This
might help put the FAI program on a paying basis, as it should be.
Although I feel the FAI program is a good thing, I am not in favor
of taxing all AMA members for the benefit of twelve or fifteen flyers."
We got two top men so far.
So, what can we do? Maybe
an elected team would be better?
World Engines has in stock a new line of OS plugs. Ask for the Number
O plug. It's a platinum alloy coil, good seal, 3/16 reach. It falls
into the lower half of the heat range and is easy on batteries as
well as engines with a good longevity; 49¢.
new line of 4 glass-metal seal plugs are hot. Seal and insulation
are guaranteed against leakage (pressure and electrical). Coil is
rugged and the plug runs in the upper heat range. Also the shielded
plug is ideal for throttle, stunt and cold weather. 49c and 59c
with long or short reach available.
Super Tiger plug available
from World Engines is a good speed plug. It has a heavy coil and
draws above-average current. It burns fuel very thoroughly without
going into over heat.
J. Roberts Co., makers of Flight Control,
Vari-Speed throttles, the Mauler, and several good profile ships,
announced a Corsair for scale and Carrier. It's a big job, engineered
for 35 to 60 engines. Bob Smurthwaite states that his test model
is powered with a S-T 56 with his own Vari-Speed throttle (natch).
Handling of the 27/32" to 1' scale ship is solid all the way, including
acceleration off the deck and under quick throttle bursts. Odd size
comes from using 2" dia. wheels as exact scale; 34 1/2" wing span
allows the Corsair to fly with 29's and up.
that from Oregon way we'll see several new "Throttle-Control" scale
and semi-scale kits in 1962. Bob, a top model engineer, is a perfectionist
in all things. Nothing is released until it has been completely
checked. In the 6 years Flight Control has been on the market, very
few changes were necessary to keep it ahead of problems. It's catching
fire now and more people are finding the complete satisfaction of
"easy" throttle flying, shooting landings and formation flying.
Voo-Doo. We built and flew Riley Wooten's VooDoo
from the Carl Goldberg kit. Carl was in at the beginning and his
experience and know-how really show up. Everything fits neatly together
and construction method is just about infallible. Those in a hurry
should be able to build one in a night. Goodies include a shaped
leading edge, full length spar and TE, die cut pad pieces and a
decal by Janet Eden. Real Wild.
I deviated from plan procedure
only when I used TMP Super-Lite glass cloth instead of Nylon to
cover the engine pad. Used the Wooten tank etc., etc. Covered with
Skydrum and 5 coats of dope. With a Fox CS (the lightest of the
new breed) it was nose heavy, but we flew that way first. Finished
weight was 20 oz. Controls per plan (15-20 degrees). First flight
it would barely turn. It figures. Added movement to elevator and
got the turns tightened up OK. Added 1-oz. lead to trailing edge
and with CG as required and 30° stabilator motion (up and down),
it turns fast and solid. It's an easy ship to handle in the air
and will keep you in there fighting.
No one claimed they
were indestructible, so we haven't tried that yet. Have observed
a number of them after mistaken landings and they are expendable.
It is a popular model, and with good reason. Would recommend that
you check the CG carefully and insure that it is per plan before
flying. The new breed CS engines are heavier than last year's models.
Voice In The Wilderness? Wouldn't it be wonderful
if all of the engine people got together and came out with identical
engine mounting dimensions in a given size engine? It sure handicaps
an experimenter like me, anyhow.
Corey Krasko is the only one so far to disagree with lengthening
Combat lines to 70'. Wants to keep the "fun" of high speed combat.
70' won't slow them down much, Corey, but it would make them feel
slower. Also has a "diamond" job better than anything including
the "E". Look him up on Long Island.
Everett W. Coppins,
Jr., of the Navy in Memphis needs scale dope on the Polish Fighter
from a kit by Sterling. This brings up two points. First can anyone
help him? Second, why don't the kit people put out a little more
effort to include sufficient info so a builder can really duplicate
the real thing and satisfy the AMA requirements for three views,
pictures etc. I know it costs more, that people really excited about
scale don't use kits, that info is hard to get, etc. However, if
there were such highly detailed kits, modelers could build contest-ready
scale with a little extra effort. Any number of good scale subjects
are treated haphazardly in kits, when they could be done very nicely.
What think you all?
Bill Eppley, Box 329, Skippack, Pa.,
is looking for a coil and condenser for the Ohlsson 19. We suggest
Hobbyland, 390 Main St., Hackensack, N.J. Hobbyland is accumulating
a good deal of old-time equipment such as pre-war and post-war (WW
II) kits and engines. Should be a good address to keep in mind.
Also don't overlook AHC, Polks, or Ace Model Supply in St. Louis.
All of these should have old stuff on their shelves and know about
it. Anyone else have antique gear for sale?
Racing. Bob Emmett sent a long letter regarding the Kent
Strat-O-Bats (Seattle, Wash.) feelings regarding TR. Greatly boiled
down, they included such thoughts as:
(1) Club-boosted FAI
and AMA TR events are bringing renewed interest. Time, patience
and hard selling are necessary. His group is emphasizing "quality"
model events at their contests, and it is working.
Proto Speed regulations to include TR type cross-section rules would
allow one model to fly two events with only engine and tank changes.
(This is a real healthy idea, based on continuous rhubarb over "looks"
of the average Proto ship).
(3) The club intends to promote
fully the events which demand higher quality building and flying.
Then from John Crombie in New Zealand we get a 4 page "Down
Under" report. John adds some different thinking to our discussion
by suggesting that we have too many "gingerbread" heats, etc. in
our TR rules. The overseas boys run only 10 mile races and the events,
both A and B, are most popular. He adds a further thought that perhaps
shut-offs are neither necessary nor desirable. (A radical idea,
but certainly pregnant with possibilities, since John is reflecting
the rules used overseas, which are working!) He continues with a
bit of surprise that our ships only hit 90 or so. NZ and Great Britain
appear to be running 30 to 40 laps at 100 to 115 using such engines
as Mac 29's and Eta 29's. Fuels range down to 5% nitro.
to me that we may actually be getting a little lazy with our building.
Problem is, do we make our rules over to support laxity or do we
try to work up?
Engines Galore. The Johnson
J-BB and KB 61 series 35 are broken in and revving. Both are top
notch, handle easily, start readily and neither has showed any outstanding
bugs. Still have not completed a comprehensive series of flight
tests (the real proof). Also have a thought to present the Fox CS,
Johnson J-BB and KB 35 side by side for your comparison. The different
approaches to high RPM are very interesting. I have not as yet determined
which is best, nor will I be able to. So forget it. My report will
be factual as possible leaving you to decide what you want. Frankly,
there may not be a rousing difference anyhow. They are all pushing
performance beyond previous limits, and word is "There's much more
Combat In Canada. Balsa Beavers' Ross Meluish of 51 Rossburn
Dr., Etibicoke, Ontario, Canada, sent us a copy of his questionnaire
concerned with Combat rules. Seems that the Hamilton Tigertown Contest
allowed Frank Anderson to try a set of rules using the "intelligent
string" system as a target. He had some questions on first level
lap, inverted or below 8 foot and some other details. Results of
the poll (15 answered) indicate 80% favor the level lap mandatory
- 50% on allowing inverted flight - 75% prefer all rounds matched
by drawing. 60 % prefer total round scores to determine winner.
My reasons for downing the mandatory level lap are: (1) Too
many out-of-control take-offs, for which a whole 5 minute period
is, then wasted; (2) Not enough fliers even remember to take or
allow an opponent to take it; (3) Your engine can be made to run
well the first lap, so why not take your chances? It's a "nice"
rule, but who needs it? Would also prefer to see best flight score
Report of the Tigertown meet wasn't detailed,
but mention was made that collisions were still rampant. Evidentially
the timing and ferocity of today's flying will take time to wear
off. The string, by the way, should be 3 1/2 lb. test. I said 5
to 10 which turns out to be too strong. 3 1/2 lb. it shall be.
By the way, Ross has a set of rules which they worked up around
the "intelligent string". Maybe he'd send you one in a self-addressed-stamped
envelope. We want that you should try them yourself.
Thought for the Month: If it wasn't done in
'61 You've lots to do in '62.