Model Aviation June 2014 Column

Posted by in District 7 News

Although you’re reading this in the June issue, I’m writing this column on the eve of leaving for the Weak Signals Toledo R/C Expo at the beginning of April. It appears that Old Man Winter has finally given up in these parts of the country, and we are getting some signs of spring. I hope that when this reaches you, we’re all seeing fair skies and calm winds. After the long, long winter we’ve had, I think Mother Nature owes us one.

Those first flights of the year—after months of being cooped up—are about as good as it gets for me. I know the urge is to get out there and fly until you drop, but if you see a newbie needing help or a visitor looking for information, please try and take a moment out for them. I’m sure you can remember the days when you needed a hand or had a head full of questions.

It’s a wonderful way to pay it forward for the hobby and I guarantee that you’ll feel good for having done so.

In March, I traveled to Akron, Ohio, to attend an electric indoor event held at The University of Akron campus. In addition to the fun-fly, the site hosted an indoor aerobatics competition and the US F3P Team Trials. For those not familiar with F3P, it is one of the newer FAI categories in which the pilots fly aerobatic sequences with lightweight aircraft constructed of foam, Mylar, and carbon fiber. The attention to detail in weight-saving construction techniques was nothing short of amazing.

Many of the airplanes that were flown were in the 2.5- to 3-ounce range. Anyone concerned about the loss of building skills in our hobby needs to look no further to see that it’s alive and well in these modelers’ hands.

The pilots were all skilled and the final results were extremely close. When the dust finally settled, the three top pilots and highest-placing junior won the right to represent the US in the F3P World Championships that will be held in Warsaw, Poland, in spring 2015. I don’t have any doubt that these young men will be a positive force in the competition and make our country proud.

Take a kid flying!