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  1. #151

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uncas View Post
    Norfolk Southern,
    I respectfully disagree. The AMA does not and should not be involved with the commercial use of anything especially drones or we will get lumped in with the UAV people.

    I don't know where you are shopping, but the costs seem to me to be lower than they have ever been. I am about to buy a 6 channel Spektrum transmitter for $140. I bought my JR 6 channel 9 years ago for $250. I do not see this hobby being anymore expensive than bowling or hunting or boating, etc.
    I agree totally. Why would the AMA be involved in anything dealing with commercial use? We can go back to the old argument , "If it were not for the insurance most would not even join the AMA and would save the membership dues." I fit that later group to some degree, although not totally.

    Somehow we get locked into the AMA controlling RC and this almost reminds me of our US governing body. It has been asked why the AMA is the sole governing body for RC, yet not often addressed. I agree that if we as RC modelers believe that AMA speaks for us then no issue at all.

    I mean no disrepect to the AMA, just pointing out some other lines of thought. Is the United Way the ONLY non-profit charity ORG and an absolute authority on how you should give? I think I will go to the closet and get my flame suit out now

  2. #152

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uncas View Post
    And so we now have the January Edition of MA - Page 95 under the Heading Advanced Flight Technologies and the topic is stated Safety and New Technology.

    I am confused. After the AMA commits significant resources in lobbying efforts to protect us from Government legislation we are now being (propositioned?) by the Roswell Flight Group and the Drone User Group Network to support basically non hobby related activities using FPV model aircraft. In the artcicle it looks like these people and their mission have been shut down by the Feds until 2015. I am guessing this is serious UAV legislation. So now, according to arcticle, it is supposed be up to us - the AMA and us Hobbiests to go forward with this effort even though the things they are proposing have nothing to do with the pursuit of the hobby but rather to use these models to support commercial activities. They appear to me to be trying to an end around Gov restrictions and using us as their cover. I vote no.


    How can you call FPV non hobby related activity? It's flying RC right?

    Crash99

  3. #153

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradpaul View Post
    If the AMA accepted "commercial use" what would be the effect on the insurance premiums? The AMA paid $1,058,823 in 2012 and $1,854,505 in 2011 for membership insurance and claims.

    If the premium increased due to additional exposure for commercial activities should the AMA pass that on to all open members in a dues increase? Or create a "commercial" membership class that pays annual membership fee?
    BradPaul,

    so are you now open to tier membership? Could we go by the type of claim paid out? Would you reduce the dues to the guys that fly only Profile 3D due to no claims were paid out for 2000 - 2012? I don't know about 2013 yet. Increase glider only pilot due to that claim?

    I'm with you on this. I think I should pay for insurance for a normal risk. The high risk group should have to pay higher cost.

    Crash99

  4. #154

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hossfly View Post
    Here I have to disagree. I am an OLD-D-D-D modeler from the '40s. Buying a spark ignition or glow engine cost me some $15-20+ in the 1945-50 era. That was way more expensive in $$ then than a significant engine of today at over a $100.00. Heck, good engines are available for less than $100. The only thing expensive are good kits if you can find one. Cheap foam and electric ARFs have destroyed real aero-modeling. Do I need kits? NO WAY, I have almost 100 kits from the early '40s, gas, rubber, and CL & FF along with RC for many years from early RC to current. Scale models to 100"+ wing span down to 40". I have some 100+/- plans plus stacks of balsa, ply, and foam stuff. Over 100 engines from .049 to 1.2 glow, NIB spark ignition engines along with used ones, gas burners up to a tad over 4.2 Cu. Ins, and probably will pick up a few more. Yet I cannot quit buying stuff that I will never use, yet I still buy, not only models stuff, but new tools and so forth. I pay dues to 3 RC Clubs and subscribe to MAN, FM, along with being a life member of AMA therefore AMA's MA and several other model and 1:1 scale magazines. If I could get by with only $600.00 a month for model airplanes and such stuff, my wife might be easier to get along with HA HA!
    Look at these guys with turbines, Giant Scale, etc. and going all over the country to events. Shucks, Man, they make me look like a pauper with what they spend.

    It is NOT AMA's place to set the market for public aero-modeling. Flying sites, and all associated expenses belong to the modeling public. AMA is an association that uses aero-modelers to set the rules, events, and guidance for the state of modeling. There is a place for all modelers, which does not always mean RC people. One can always join the Flying Aces Club (I belong to it) and have a ball with their rubber powered events. Rubber powered models are NOT easy, especially in the competition arena. Actually the costs of RC and modeling except CL Competition, have become much less over the past decade. Back in 1970 a Kraft series 71 radio, Transmitter, Receiver, Battery, Charger, switch and 4 Servos cost over $500.00. My 1972 set with 2 receivers, double frequency, cost $800.00 yankee greens! Additional servos were $40.00 each and there were no different types per se. just servos. By 1975, MRC hit the market, with a full 6 channel, 4 servo system and it was, IIRC, less than $250.00. They went like hot-cakes. Back then I owned a Hobby Shop in Mt. Prospect, IL. I learned to fly RC using a 27 mhz named Hinode. I imported them until the FCC STOPPED such. They did not see the good I was doing! I could sell the 4 channel radio complete system for $150 and make s profit.
    Now consider all these prices in 1970-75 $ vice the inflated $ of today.

    WE DO NOT NEED ANY INTERFERENCE FROM AMA IN THE $ COST OF OUR MODELING SPORT OR HOBBY AS SOME REFER TO IT. The trade will do fine and the more "trade" the cheaper stuff gets.

    Look my Brother, I was born in 1963 so I understand you have been flying since I was born. The hobby is more than spending a winter building a nice looking plane. I know change is hard but if you love the whole building think that's great. That is the slice of the hobby pie you take part in.

    Many of us love many slices of pie. If someone loves other slices of pie, they are not destroying the hobby at all. I have built from plains but I rather spend my time flying. I love it all! I have to admit I have never done FF, Control line or turbines and I don't think I will ever want to but I accept that is part of the same hobby I love.

    Crash99

  5. #155
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    Quote Originally Posted by crash99 View Post
    BradPaul,

    so are you now open to tier membership? Could we go by the type of claim paid out? Would you reduce the dues to the guys that fly only Profile 3D due to no claims were paid out for 2000 - 2012? I don't know about 2013 yet. Increase glider only pilot due to that claim?

    I'm with you on this. I think I should pay for insurance for a normal risk. The high risk group should have to pay higher cost.

    Crash99
    No tiered membership would be required......... just an extra cost commercial ryder for those that need it. However I would expect that anyone flying commercially does not expect their homeowners to cover commercial activity, just like the AMA should not cover that without paying more.

    Brad

  6. #156

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    All the infighting aside, UAV's, FPV, etc. does impact the AMA and it's members, and is a matter of concern to all.
    The real question is to take a "head in sand" approach or be proactive.
    Failing to be proactive allows those who have axes to grind to prevail.

  7. #157

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradpaul View Post
    IMHO, most (not all) FPV operators (pilots) are or were AMA members. The AMA rightly should be concerned with the were. The unfortunate truth is that flying FPV under AMA rules is like requiring a bicycle rider to only ride using training wheels. They just leave the AMA and fly as they wish.

    .............
    Actually, I think the vast majority of FPV folks these days have never been AMA members and operate on their own. If you read the FPV discussion area over at the "other" RC site, this comes across loud and clear.

    Back when there were perhaps 100 folks doing FPV as a hobby here in the states, I would agree that most if not all were AMA members.

    I agree that FPVers have no real incentive at this time to join the AMA.
    Last edited by Thomas B; 12-30-2013 at 01:25 PM.
    Electric Coolhunter

  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by crash99 View Post
    Look my Brother, I was born in 1963 so I understand you have been flying since I was born. The hobby is more than spending a winter building a nice looking plane. I know change is hard but if you love the whole building think that's great. That is the slice of the hobby pie you take part in.

    Many of us love many slices of pie. If someone loves other slices of pie, they are not destroying the hobby at all. I have built from plains but I rather spend my time flying. I love it all! I have to admit I have never done FF, Control line or turbines and I don't think I will ever want to but I accept that is part of the same hobby I love.

    Crash99
    Crash, I don't think you and I are brothers however OTOH well my dad was a "mover" which did cause some problems, but that does not apply to our common topic.

    You have your desires and stand up for someone else to support your way. Well we all seem to do such. That is the way things come into our world. I believe that those that support something should be ready to finance that item. Look at www.jetero.com. That facility on 50 acres of land would not exist had I not purchased 100 acres using my cash almost 18 years ago. Am I boasting? Probably SO!
    It is time for the model aviation community to stand up and be counted and SUPPORT FINANCES while demanding leadership use their positions to assure that AMA does not simply become a GROUP that distributes advertising and does NOT simply become the footpath for those that wish to use AMA only for the advertisers' gain within the market place.
    Just you wait and see where AMA winds up when this new parent company becomes active, and who will be running it ?????

    Again I agree with Brad Paul. Insurance can be adjusted for those that have the most to loose. My Homeowner's lakeside cabin in Michigan costs a whole lot less for insurance than where I am sitting now. I do not care to finance your more hazardous activity.
    Horrace Cain AMA L-93

    “Peace is the brief glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.\" T. Jefferson

  9. #159

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hossfly View Post
    Crash, I don't think you and I are brothers however OTOH well my dad was a "mover" which did cause some problems, but that does not apply to our common topic.

    You have your desires and stand up for someone else to support your way. Well we all seem to do such. That is the way things come into our world. I believe that those that support something should be ready to finance that item. Look at www.jetero.com. That facility on 50 acres of land would not exist had I not purchased 100 acres using my cash almost 18 years ago. Am I boasting? Probably SO!
    It is time for the model aviation community to stand up and be counted and SUPPORT FINANCES while demanding leadership use their positions to assure that AMA does not simply become a GROUP that distributes advertising and does NOT simply become the footpath for those that wish to use AMA only for the advertisers' gain within the market place.
    Just you wait and see where AMA winds up when this new parent company becomes active, and who will be running it ?????

    Again I agree with Brad Paul. Insurance can be adjusted for those that have the most to loose. My Homeowner's lakeside cabin in Michigan costs a whole lot less for insurance than where I am sitting now. I do not care to finance your more hazardous activity.

    More Hazardous Activity - Lets look at this. Can you please tell me how many AMA clams have been paid out involving multi rotor aircraft? I just want to know if you were talking facts or just talking an option with nothing to back up your option.

    After you find the true facts should the AMA raise the rates on those that fly that type of aircraft?

    Crash99

  10. #160

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    I don't think it's about the type of aircraft, but where it's flown.

  11. #161
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    Quote Originally Posted by crash99 View Post
    More Hazardous Activity - Lets look at this. Can you please tell me how many AMA clams have been paid out involving multi rotor aircraft? I just want to know if you were talking facts or just talking an option with nothing to back up your option.

    After you find the true facts should the AMA raise the rates on those that fly that type of aircraft?

    Crash99
    Crash your opinion, my opinion, Hoss's opinion are worthless for a discussion of liability insurance premiums. The only opinion that matters is the underwriter at Weschester Surplus Lines Insurance Company, if the AMA asks to have the exclusion for commercial enterprise or business pursuit removed and that results in a rate increase I would be in favor of passing the increase on TO THOSE THAT OPERATE A MODEL AIRCRAFT FOR COMMERCIAL ENTERPRISE OR BUSINESS PURSUIT. Some may want to pass the cost to the total open membership, Why should the membership pay more because some want to have an aerial photography business?

  12. #162

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    OK guys, I have a problem with the way this discussion seems to be going.

    More than one of you have interpreted the AMA's current actions as maybe considering permitting the commercial use of hobby aircraft under the sponsorship of the AMA. Now, as I read the survey that several of you have cited, it appears that the AMA is trying to understand our views about the recreational and commercial uses of FPV and any other new technology.

    I don't know very much about FPV. I don't own or operate any FPV equipment and I do not have any short term or long term plans to play with FPV. However, I have no intention of standing in the way of those who want to use it and I will actively support the safe use of FPV within the hobby.

    I know that we are all aware of the "FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 " it has a section that allows us to operate within the scope of safety rules developed and maintained by a community based organization. What the law tells us is that we cannot allow the commercial use of our aircraft within the hobby. The instant that the AMA or any other CBO tries to do this, the FAA will fall on us like a ton of bricks.

    Forget the insurance issues or anything else and remember that we do not want FAA oversight. That means commercial activities, other than model aviation vendors, within the hobby are out of the question.

  13. #163
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    Overall a good post...but we never need to lose sight that the FAA is already on us like a "ton of bricks"... A bone has been thrown to the AMA in the reform act but mainly symbolic IMO. People will continue to fly without CBO oversight...The FAA will continue to control the airspace.
    It is very important to understand that Jesus not only died for our sins but died because of our sins...even harder to understand now, exactly what were those sins???

  14. #164
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    The problem is defining "commercial activities" seems simple BUT........ If an employee of a model manufacturer/distributor is compensated to demo his employers product at AMA events, is that "commercial activity"? What if the person is not an employee but a sponsored pilot that receives free products? Just two quick examples......

    The emerging technology of FPV/multirotors has so much social benefit potential (scientific research, search and rescue, agricultural use, aerial photography, and many more) with so many social problems (see and avoid, line of sight, flying over people/buildings, privacy and many more) that there are no simple answers to what the AMA should/should not do.

    And always remember "follow the money" ...................... FPV/multirotors ARE where the big new money is for manufactures and distributors.

  15. #165

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    Quote Originally Posted by bradpaul View Post
    The problem is defining "commercial activities" seems simple BUT........ If an employee of a model manufacturer/distributor is compensated to demo his employers product at AMA events, is that "commercial activity"? What if the person is not an employee but a sponsored pilot that receives free products? Just two quick examples......

    The emerging technology of FPV/multirotors has so much social benefit potential (scientific research, search and rescue, agricultural use, aerial photography, and many more) with so many social problems (see and avoid, line of sight, flying over people/buildings, privacy and many more) that there are no simple answers to what the AMA should/should not do.

    And always remember "follow the money" ...................... FPV/multirotors ARE where the big new money is for manufactures and distributors.
    Brad: In this case, specifically, "commercial activity" refers to the use of your model aircraft to provide services for other people. You are not allowed, as a hobbyist, to take aerial photos for money or to even perform a demonstration of your aircraft for money.

    A model aviation vendor is not a hobbyist, he is acting with the permission of the club operating the field to demonstrate products for hobbyists to buy. His income only comes when a product is purchased.

    An employee of a company or a temporary consultant can be paid by any means including barter. As such his activity is commercial, but is allowable as long as it is exclusively for the purpose of selling model aviation products to hobbyists.

    I agree with you that any type of sUAS has great commercial and social benefit. And, as a hobby they could be great fun to fly.

  16. #166

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    Quote Originally Posted by littlecrankshaf View Post
    Overall a good post...but we never need to lose sight that the FAA is already on us like a "ton of bricks"... A bone has been thrown to the AMA in the reform act but mainly symbolic IMO. People will continue to fly without CBO oversight...The FAA will continue to control the airspace.
    Well. the FAA has always owned the airspace. The law just gives us permission to use a small part of it under specified conditions. I myself do not consider the AMA safety rules so onerous that I can't have fun. As for those who don't want to obey the rules. Well they can just take their chances and pay the price if they get caught. And if the FAA catches them, it can get very expensive.

  17. #167

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    I liked the past 2 post from BradPaul. Here is a question

    An AMA member takes his multi rotor and films a house for sale. Edits the video and sales the edit labor cost to the agent selling the house. He did not include the labor for flying or recording. He was given permission to fly over the land and house. The only person on site was the FPV pilot and spotter.

    Is there an issue there?

    Crash99

  18. #168

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    Quote Originally Posted by crash99 View Post
    I liked the past 2 post from BradPaul. Here is a question

    An AMA member takes his multi rotor and films a house for sale. Edits the video and sales the edit labor cost to the agent selling the house. He did not include the labor for flying or recording. He was given permission to fly over the land and house. The only person on site was the FPV pilot and spotter.

    Is there an issue there?

    Crash99


    I am pretty sure that the FAA recently announced approval to use model aircraft to fly over personal private property, with permission, for commercial type use as long as reasonable safety rules are followed. If the operator wants to, he could charge for all expenses and time involved to make a profit. Which I think is perfectly sensible.

    As for liability should an accident occur, the operator must provide his own insurance. Since this is not a recreational activity, the AMA insurance cannot be used.

  19. #169

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    Things may work out where the FAA does not get involved in the smallest tier of suAVs, roughly equivalent to parkflyer type models, that are flown line of sight for aerial photography uses.
    Electric Coolhunter

  20. #170
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnShe View Post
    As for liability should an accident occur, the operator must provide his own insurance. Since this is not a recreational activity, the AMA insurance cannot be used.
    Correct the AMA policy with Westchester Surplus Lines specifically excludes "commercial enterprise or business pursuit" nowhere does it say that the enterprise or pursuit must be profitable.

    So if you are flying FPV for commercial enterprise or business pursuit then you will not be able to look to the AMA for coverage and unless your homeowners has a commercial use ryder you will have no coverage there either.
    The question to consider is how much risk exposure are you comfortable with if you fly FPV commercially and fly over persons and buildings? Having permission will mean nothing if an accident happens. But I like that today it is the individual choice of the operator as to what insurance coverage they need, I see no need for the AMA to blanket cover FPV beyond traditional hobby use.

  21. #171

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas B View Post
    Things may work out where the FAA does not get involved in the smallest tier of suAVs, roughly equivalent to parkflyer type models, that are flown line of sight for aerial photography uses.
    Don't count on it. If it is outside the hobby, the FAA will be all over it. The only way to avoid FAA oversight is personal use on personal property or fly strictly recreational.

  22. #172

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnShe View Post
    Don't count on it. If it is outside the hobby, the FAA will be all over it. The only way to avoid FAA oversight is personal use on personal property or fly strictly recreational.
    The jury is still out until the rules are published. The Tier 1 very small sUAS had fairly minimal rules in the early proposals and the FAA might decide that oversight and enforcement on this class might be untenable.

    No one knows for sure until the real rules are published. Until then, it is all hypothetical.
    Electric Coolhunter

  23. #173
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradpaul View Post
    Correct the AMA policy with Westchester Surplus Lines specifically excludes "commercial enterprise or business pursuit" nowhere does it say that the enterprise or pursuit must be profitable.

    So if you are flying FPV for commercial enterprise or business pursuit then you will not be able to look to the AMA for coverage and unless your homeowners has a commercial use ryder you will have no coverage there either.
    The question to consider is how much risk exposure are you comfortable with if you fly FPV commercially and fly over persons and buildings? Having permission will mean nothing if an accident happens. But I like that today it is the individual choice of the operator as to what insurance coverage they need, I see no need for the AMA to blanket cover FPV beyond traditional hobby use.
    Excellent advice, BP, however, IMO, I can see a number of deep holes in any way, method, addition, etc., etc. that AMA could blanket cover members of any kind of insurance, yet leave any member in a deep hole should some incident - accident arise. I still have some items as directed to me a few years ago. How many of you folks have any concern that AMA can throw a member out of the AMA without the Bylaws requirement of said member being allowed a hearing before the EC? It is so easy to do. When I wish to find out if said Run-Around-the-Bylaws can be done, I simply look in the mirror and see the face of one that has..." been there, done that!"
    If you remember the forum that AMA set up for a while, yet closed it because the fires got rather warm, well the AMA can still make it very warm for any current member.
    How about a member being threatened with a simple bypass of By Laws: "You can keep your membership, but you will be restricted from flying at any Chartered Club facility, not allowed to belong to any AMA Chartered Club, or attend any AMA Sanctioned event." The AMA EC has that power and it was pointed to at least 1 member that had supported AMA for over 50 years, never asking AMA for a penny while doing much volunteer work for AMA.

    Now I have attempted to bring to attention of members that when this new Foundation comes into play, things are going to change big time. While I am in favor of the Foundation, there are many-many ways to skin cats there. In addition the officers will be working to stay in good standing as the Foundation Officers. Unlike AMA Officers, Foundation Officers can be paid for their services. Will that increase the political functions? With just how these forums display that so many AMA members - there for the required memberships - will find within a few years, very little of aero-modeling will be the old-time FUN!!!

    I dare predict that certain Foundation functions will become paid positions, and those good-ol'-boys will do as told to maintain their position/s. If AMA is (and will be) the CBO (Community Based Organization) just think of the traffic that can be prescribed between FAA and AMA. Insurance will be sorely needed for most fliers especially when things happen. Can anyone be so naive as to think that various Attorney - Agents will be sitting on their behinders when a TOY Flying Machine creates damage in the public neighborhoods? As Brad Paul says, "follow the money" which will be the name of the day. Simple things like Westchester blames AMA, FAA blames AMA, AMA blames the pilot who blames the club and AMA and so on and so on. Young attorneys will be jumping into the "Easy One".

    If the pilot survives financially, it will simply be because of DEEP POCKETS. Sorry but I won't be there to help in that one. Neither will AMA, which should NOT be there in the first place.

    Think of this good story: I was a juror on a seemingly small case. A Young Contractor was suing for money owed to him by a mid-size business in Houston. (Defendant) The judge wanted jurors to pass note to him should questions arise. It was to me very clear that the whole thing was rigged to screw the young contractor out of money owed. It seemed that both the contractor's attorney and the defendant's attorney were in it together. The other jurors did not seem concerned. I passed a number of note some showing that the Defendant was violating several major business laws, using illegal terms and the contractor's attorney was letting such pass.
    Then on the 3rd morning we found that the night before the Defendant had agreed to pay the contractor all of his price plus all court fees including the contractor's expenses.

    Who will help YOU? All those young lawyer's will be there reaching for the flowing $$s.
    Last edited by Hossfly; 12-31-2013 at 03:08 PM. Reason: lost some.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas B View Post
    The jury is still out until the rules are published. The Tier 1 very small sUAS had fairly minimal rules in the early proposals and the FAA might decide that oversight and enforcement on this class might be untenable.

    No one knows for sure until the real rules are published. Until then, it is all hypothetical.
    Tier 1? I have no knowledge of this Tier 1 concept, could you fill me in?

    As far as I know, the FAA has yet to publish their rules for public comment and I have heard noting of "Tier 1".

  25. #175

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnShe View Post
    Don't count on it. If it is outside the hobby, the FAA will be all over it. The only way to avoid FAA oversight is personal use on personal property or fly strictly recreational.
    JohnShe,
    maybe you missed my earlier post, where I pointed an item from the new MA,
    concerning the minutes of a recent AMA EC meeting. I'll paste it here:

    In the January issue of MA, p. 150 under AMA EC meeting,
    there is Motion III, where it was moved and seconded to "move forward with developing a program to support the personal use and light
    commercial sUAS communities."

    Now, I suppose that the word "support" there could be construed many ways,
    but in light of the questions on the recent AMA survey,
    the amount of time AMA has spent meeting with different UAV companies (as described by various authors in MA and on-line),
    AMA's meetings with FAA concerning same,
    the new "tech" columns in MA, etc.,
    I think it is possible that some big changes are in the wind.

    Another tidbit from the recent survey.
    There was a question that went something like,
    "How much training would you be willing to do in order to use your
    "drone" for commercial purposes?" (all paraphrased by me).
    The choices went from none, all the way to full commercial pilots training, and several in-between.

    Earlier, someone said something about AMA trying to do an "end around" the FAA.
    Personally, my opinion would be that they would be doing more of an "in cooperation with".


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