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The single reason why drones are causing such problems for the AMA

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The single reason why drones are causing such problems for the AMA

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Old 12-31-2015, 06:56 PM
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ltc
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Default The single reason why drones are causing such problems for the AMA

The single fault in the AMA's decision to 'embrace drone$' (OK, besides the $) is simple.

Multirotors/drones/tri/quad/hex/octocopters/etc all have one thing in common which allows anyone to immediately do something incredibly stupid with a high degree of confidence and success.

They simply do not require any instruction or skill to 'fly'. Period. None, nada, zero.

Sorry to all the MR "pilots" but it's an unavoidable fact.

Look at traditional RC planes and helicopters (and if you want to include the other AMA classes covered by the FAI)
The path to being able to successfully 'take off and land' was traditionally fairly long (weeks/months/a season or two). It has been this way for decades, long before I started flying in the 70's

You buy your plane at a local hobby shop, show up at a field recommended by the hobby shop or AMA website, and ask to be trained by an instructor.
You inevitably crash since YOU are responsible for controlling the plane/heli in all axes and orientations. That's OK, it's all part of the learning process.
You hardly ever see someone show up with a Kadet/Falcon/etc training and single handedly learn to fly by themselves. It just doesn't work.

Contrast this with Multirotors/drones/tri/quad/hex/octocopters/etc Complete opposite.
Self stabilizing, panic recovery modes, headless operation, fully autonomous operation, return to home.
In essence near zero skill required.

This lower 'barrier to entry' allows for completely untrained, uninformed "pilots" (and i use the term loosely) to fly anywhere, as high as they like from basically the first couple of times out.
If they were to crash a few dozen times before ever getting to altitude (way below 400'), the problem would self correct.

This is the fundamental difference between a "drone" and a "traditional AMA aircraft"....again, a loose definition of a traditional AMA aircraft would be one covered under the FAI regulations. They simply do NOT belong in the same organization, operating under the same set of rules/guidelines/regulations. They would be far better served (as would traditional AMA members) if the MR crowd formed their own CBO

Again, this is never going to happen, since no matter what the AMA states publicly to its members, since it is entirely about $.
From this point forward, it's all damage control. If the entire AMA organization resigned tomorrow and new individuals were to take charge, it would make little to no difference.
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Old 12-31-2015, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by ltc View Post
The single fault in the AMA's decision to 'embrace drone$' (OK, besides the $) is simple.

Multirotors/drones/tri/quad/hex/octocopters/etc all have one thing in common which allows anyone to immediately do something incredibly stupid with a high degree of confidence and success.

They simply do not require any instruction or skill to 'fly'. Period. None, nada, zero.

Sorry to all the MR "pilots" but it's an unavoidable fact.

Look at traditional RC planes and helicopters (and if you want to include the other AMA classes covered by the FAI)
The path to being able to successfully 'take off and land' was traditionally fairly long (weeks/months/a season or two). It has been this way for decades, long before I started flying in the 70's

You buy your plane at a local hobby shop, show up at a field recommended by the hobby shop or AMA website, and ask to be trained by an instructor.
You inevitably crash since YOU are responsible for controlling the plane/heli in all axes and orientations. That's OK, it's all part of the learning process.
You hardly ever see someone show up with a Kadet/Falcon/etc training and single handedly learn to fly by themselves. It just doesn't work.

Contrast this with Multirotors/drones/tri/quad/hex/octocopters/etc Complete opposite.
Self stabilizing, panic recovery modes, headless operation, fully autonomous operation, return to home.
In essence near zero skill required.

This lower 'barrier to entry' allows for completely untrained, uninformed "pilots" (and i use the term loosely) to fly anywhere, as high as they like from basically the first couple of times out.
If they were to crash a few dozen times before ever getting to altitude (way below 400'), the problem would self correct.

This is the fundamental difference between a "drone" and a "traditional AMA aircraft"....again, a loose definition of a traditional AMA aircraft would be one covered under the FAI regulations. They simply do NOT belong in the same organization, operating under the same set of rules/guidelines/regulations. They would be far better served (as would traditional AMA members) if the MR crowd formed their own CBO

Again, this is never going to happen, since no matter what the AMA states publicly to its members, since it is entirely about $.
From this point forward, it's all damage control. If the entire AMA organization resigned tomorrow and new individuals were to take charge, it would make little to no difference.
Being an AMA member does not require any instruction or skill to 'fly.' Period. None, nada, zero. It only requires that you send them $75/yr.
Are noobs operating on their own better off (safer) with traditional model aircraft which demands acquired skills, or drones, which according to you don't?
Bear in mind that about half of AMA members do not belong to a club where they might avail themselves of the training you deem vital to acting responsibly and so saving the hobby.

Not disagreeing that drone operators should have their own organization, but it is the venues they operate in that makes the essential difference, not the learning curve in flying them. It is not reasonable to separate from them because they are stupid and irresponsible, but only because their hobby is something other than aeromodeling.
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Old 12-31-2015, 08:48 PM
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I'll back the OP on the point that anyone with a chip on their shoulder has a tool at their disposal to cause chaos like they have never had before and it takes very little skill to execute.
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Old 12-31-2015, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by combatpigg View Post
I'll back the OP on the point that anyone with a chip on their shoulder has a tool at their disposal to cause chaos like they have never had before and it takes very little skill to execute.
Doesn't matter to the perp if AMA 'embraces' the tool, does it?
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Old 12-31-2015, 10:51 PM
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Originally Posted by cj_rumley View Post
Doesn't matter to the perp if AMA 'embraces' the tool, does it?
Of course not, but the "single reason" I thought he was trying to make is that never before has it been so easy for people outside of our hobby to purchase a plane and become public nuisances [or even enemies] at the drop of a hat.

As far as AMA members who "go it alone" without the typical AMA club guidance...I'm surprised to see your estimate of 50%...!
I've met a few over the years, but I've never lived in a truly rural area where your only contact with the Hobby World used to be through catalogs, the mail man and maybe an annual pilgrimage into town for "vittles".

Last edited by combatpigg; 12-31-2015 at 11:01 PM.
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Old 01-01-2016, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by combatpigg View Post
Of course not, but the "single reason" I thought he was trying to make is that never before has it been so easy for people outside of our hobby to purchase a plane and become public nuisances [or even enemies] at the drop of a hat.
Possibly contributes to the menace, but it's clear there were bad actors long before ready-to-fly drones were available; Trappy wasn't a novice. Nobody wants to have our hobby/sport separated from that activity more than I do, whatever the experience level of the operators.
As far as AMA members who "go it alone" without the typical AMA club guidance...I'm surprised to see your estimate of 50%...!
I've met a few over the years, but I've never lived in a truly rural area where your only contact with the Hobby World used to be through catalogs, the mail man and maybe an annual pilgrimage into town for "vittles".
That stat is attributed to Dave Brown, and so is dated. Haven't seen any figures since his reign.
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Old 01-01-2016, 07:57 AM
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Single reason, main reason and mostly the reason. Doesn't make a difference, ITC is mostly right.

The FAA has us in their sights. It is time to watch the fallout.
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Old 01-01-2016, 02:55 PM
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I think you guys are missing something. Not wrong, just missing a key point. Multi-rotors not only fail to require any useful skill or knowledge, they require very little in the way of real estate to operate them in. When someone goes to the LHS looking to get into RC, where to fly is one of the first questions that comes up. They then get directed to one of the local clubs. (All AMA sanctioned) There, they get the assistance and instruction that they need. It also meant some supervision was usually present. Due to the nature of a multi-rotor, where to fly is no longer an issue. AMA and club dues aren't required. $200.00+ per year dues to fly a $100.00 quad? Yeah, right. In many areas, including mine, the vast majority of RC flyers don't have a place to legally fly that isn't an AMA sanctioned club field. Multi-rotors are immune to this AMA monopoly and there's nothing anyone can do about it. That they can be flown anywhere, by anyone, the "need" for them to join AMA is complete nonsense to them. Why the AMA ever thought they could extend their monopoly over multi-rotors is beyond me. The only explanation I see is GREED. Take a look at any issue of MA from the last few years. See all the ads having to do with multi-rotors? There you are. Ad revenue is the only benefit the AMA will ever receive from the multi-rotor industry. I just wish the AMA had realized this before it was too late.
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Old 01-01-2016, 04:29 PM
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Even before the multi rotors were available, the various manufacturers started producing the "Park Flyer" lineup with easy to fly and small aircraft that encouraged
the end users to fly anywhere but an AMA club field. Now take the group of folks that embraced that idea and give them an instant gratification toy such as the multirotors and it's all downhill from there. No skills learned, no education in aerodynamics, nothing but launching a toy that can be a safety problem to people and property with no education of either.

I know that the park flyers can and have been used in a safe manner at fields other than sanctioned AMA sites, But not all the users of such things take the time to consider whether or not the site they are using is appropriate for such use.
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Old 01-01-2016, 04:36 PM
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RC Guy and Tommy Gun both hit a couple of "Tape Measure Shots" with their analysis..!
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Old 01-01-2016, 05:39 PM
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The lack of knowledge and skill to operate a multi rotor to me isn't the problem. Go to you tube and you can watch countless videos of people who have the skill to fly doing all kinds of stupid things with traditional RC planes. People in general just don't care. I think the problem is the fact that these MR can go places that the traditional planes could never go other than above 400'.

I heard a story a couple of years ago in the town I live, a hobby store worker flew a multi rotor from the store to the local mall and back which was around a 1/4 of a mile away. He did it simply because he could and is an experienced pilot. So it isn't just the lackies causing the problems.

That MR could have ran out of battery or maybe even had a problem with electronic and down it goes. There aren't any fields in between either.
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Old 01-01-2016, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Tommy_Gun View Post
Even before the multi rotors were available, the various manufacturers started producing the "Park Flyer" lineup with easy to fly and small aircraft that encouraged
the end users to fly anywhere but an AMA club field. Now take the group of folks that embraced that idea and give them an instant gratification toy such as the multirotors and it's all downhill from there. No skills learned, no education in aerodynamics, nothing but launching a toy that can be a safety problem to people and property with no education of either.

I know that the park flyers can and have been used in a safe manner at fields other than sanctioned AMA sites, But not all the users of such things take the time to consider whether or not the site they are using is appropriate for such use.
Just like multi-rotors, most park flyers were purchased as toys. The people that bought them either didn't know about the AMA or if they did, quickly decided that they didn't need the AMA. Telling these guys they need the AMA is like telling a twelve year old with his new bat and ball that he needs to join the NCAA. Had the AMA worked at distancing themselves from "toys", the membership might be happier today. Problem is, the general public can't tell the difference and the Government can't seem to, either. As a result, we all get lumped together and we all face the same punishment. I personally don't believe the AMA had the foresight or the means to avert this mess. Anyone that thinks the AMA will save us from Government regulation and control is delusional.
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Old 01-01-2016, 10:23 PM
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2016 farmers almanac page 26 predicts 400,000 projected sales of drones this year. just general info maybe more or less.
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Old 01-01-2016, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by oh44077 View Post
2016 farmers almanac page 26 predicts 400,000 projected sales of drones this year. just general info maybe more or less.
This is about 133.3 drones per county, based on 3000 counties.

I should expect to be able to drive through a few counties on any nice day and see some drone activity.

Last edited by combatpigg; 01-01-2016 at 11:12 PM.
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Old 01-02-2016, 01:28 AM
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I agree with you, and I have made the same arguments in another thread.
A group of guys on the thread, I've been following decided , that it would be a good idea for each of us, to contact our congressman at this time.
It's certainly better than waiting for our own fields to be closed and doing nothing.
Perhaps you and the other posters feel the same way.

The AMA has provided some suggestions of what to write.
But, suggestions alone are not enough to get guys writing, in fact.
writing a letter is a difficult for many people.


I hope you will read, and consider using this letter if it meets with your approval.
Here it is for your review.

Dear Senator/Congressman:

I am a model aviation enthusiast and member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics ("AMA"), recognized as a national community-based organization.

I am very distraught with the recent announcement by the Federal Aviation Administration that as of December 21, 2015,AMA flyers will have to register with the FAA.

This new requirement appears to be a contradiction of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 which was passed by Congress and the Senate. By promulgating new restrictions and requirements for AMA members, the FAA appears to be overriding the existing Congressional directives. The new registration requirement, combined with the recent closure of 36 AMA chartered field closures, are imposing hardships on our membership. We have established an 80 year record of impeccable safety, and in fact have set the standard for safe operation of our model aircraft in our national air space. AMA requirements demand that all pilots follow the AMA safety code, and we utilize training programs to ensure our members fly safely and responsibly. I would welcome you or any member of your staff to visit our local flying site to witness firsthand how we are stewards of our land, and airspace. In the alternative, I’d be happy to discuss these issues with you or your staff if you have any further questions or concerns.

On behalf of all AMA members I hope that you will look into the legality and the fairness of the FAA's recent actions.
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Old 01-02-2016, 01:36 AM
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You can excuse ignorance only so far. How much research does it require to realize how these multi-rotor can be misused?

If we can analyze the use and misuse of multi-rotors do think for a minute the AMA didn't?

And if they didn't realize the potential for problems then that ignorance disqualifies them from representing us.

I believe they did realize the problems ahead,

but didn't care and only saw "the dollar$ always the dollar$"
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Old 01-02-2016, 06:52 AM
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As far as how easy the drones are to fly, my grandson will be 7 this month, a friend that has a drone let him fly it , just showed him the sticks what did what and away he went no former stick time. The landing was a bit ruff but no broken parts, that is a child flying a drone first time. So you drone pilots that fly and pat yourself s on the back, my grandson not even 7 can fly one. Just saying!
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Old 01-02-2016, 06:57 AM
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Just a little note.. Not taking sides as I am not anti drone.. But alot of what was said is true. And trying to show park flyer and quad as same is not quite true. Even with stabilization .. Hands off par flying is a reach.. My nephew is still learning RC flying.. But he has a small toy type quad.. He can get around quite easily.. When he gets nervous... He just lets go.. And it sits there.. Hovers.. Not to say he hasn't dinged it.. And yeah.. Flies in back yard as he doesn't need alot of space cause he doesn't need forward movement.. Even a park flyer needs some space...
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Old 01-02-2016, 09:04 AM
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It's 12: o'clock
Have you written your congressman today?
Consider a handwritten letter to your rep it is so rare today with email it will get more attention



Dear Senator/Congressman


I am a model aviation enthusiast and member of the Academy of Model Aeronautics ("AMA"), recognized as a national community-based organization.

I am very distraught with the recent announcement by the Federal Aviation Administration that as of December 21, 2015, AMA flyers will have to register with the FAA.

This new requirement appears to be a contradiction of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 which was passed by Congress and the Senate. By promulgating new restrictions and requirements for AMA members, the FAA appears to be overriding the existing Congressional directives.
The new registration and identification requirement is a complete redundancy of our registration with the AMA. Combine this with the recent closure of 14 AMA chartered fields and it appears that the FAA is imposing needless hardships on our membership.
We have established an 80 year record of impeccable safety, and in fact have set the standard for safe operation of our model aircraft in our national air space. AMA requirements demand that all pilots follow the AMA safety code, and we utilize training programs to ensure our members fly safely and responsibly.
I would welcome you or any member of your staff to visit our local flying site to witness first hand how we are good stewards of our land and airspace.
I’d be happy to discuss these issues with you or your staff if you have any further questions or concerns.
On behalf of all AMA members I hope that you will look into the legality and the fairness of their actions.
Thank you very much for your attention to this matter,
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Old 01-02-2016, 09:20 AM
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May I suggest using Amazon's new technology??? You could probably send it to the White House direct. Good luck with that, son.
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Old 01-02-2016, 12:28 PM
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Agree here with Itc, tech used in tri/quad/hex/octocopters like fail safe, GPS, return to home, auto pilot, auto stab etc provides the "Pilots" too much comfort, they think they are PILOT, but actually not. sometimes, they use their model in irresponsible attitude, which results in worst case.
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Old 01-02-2016, 02:44 PM
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I agree with your statement but I will add it is the extended range capability that is the problem as well. The AMA and members must appeal to the FAA as to the distinction between line of sight models like we fly, or we will continue to be lumped into the same category as drone and FPV. I have no personal issue with drones and FPV but there HAS to be multiple emails sent to the FAA now. I unfortunately have little faith in the AMA's ability to help us. The "we're all in the together approach the AMA went with, for whatever reason has obviously resulted in a tremendous failure.
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Old 01-02-2016, 02:55 PM
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I wonder if the brilliant leaders ever went before the FAA administrator or if they couldn't get to him approached lower leadership that was working on these laws, and let them fly a standard model airplane/ helicopter sim and have them try to fly it. Then see all those line of sight standard models break up in little pieces! After multiple attempts some might get, a most wouldn't. Then let them fly a Phantom DJX or something comparable, have him/her push the throttle forward let it get up in the air and have them fly out a bit. Then tell them to put the transmitter down and watch what happens. I know they never did this because after all, we're all in this crap together right?
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Old 01-03-2016, 07:53 PM
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You are not 100% correct. You would be correct if you said Multirotors with GPS but that would be incorrect for racing quads.

You do need some skill flying them. Watch the FPV250 racer videos on YouTube. I'm starting to fly them and it's a challenge.

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Old 01-03-2016, 08:09 PM
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Racing drones whether they are raced LOS or FPV requires huge skills
It's like a racing helicopter with 4 or 5 other helicopters
on a tight torturous course.
I fly 3D heli and I doubt I would finish a race.
But this is a small niche of our hobby
majority is GPS, stabilized, BLOS
but is a huge part of the non AMA general public right?
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