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Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

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Old 04-11-2005, 07:26 PM
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J_R
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Default Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

A few of you have posted that you are or your club is involved in the Intro Pilot program.

Can you give your experiences with this program?

Specifically, how many non-AMA members have you or your club trained? per year? What number or percentage of trained pilots go on to join the AMA and/or the club?

Has the change away from instant AMA memberships had any affect on the number of people showing up without an AMA membership?

How do you feel about the paperwork involved?

Is the 30 days sufficient time to train people?
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Old 04-12-2005, 12:04 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

ORIGINAL: J_R

//snip//

Can you give your experiences with this program?

Specifically, how many non-AMA members have you or your club trained? per year? What number or percentage of trained pilots go on to join the AMA and/or the club?
At my Club the Intro-Pilot program is used for some initial introduction with a newbie that has a model. It is used to provide initial instruction while the newbie is obtaining his/her AMA and then Club membership.
All persons are limited to THREE flying visits (advertised events excluded) during any 12 calendar months, therefore no person is TRAINED unless they obtain AMA and join the Club.

In our specific case, the newbie can receive 3 sessions however he/she will not be taught to Take-off and/or Land. Only when he/she meets the requirements for joining the club, AMA, dues, and voted in will he/she be TRAINED.

Has the change away from instant AMA memberships had any affect on the number of people showing up without an AMA membership?
Not to my knowledge

How do you feel about the paperwork involved?
Each IP keeps his own books. He does his own paperwork. The overall "paperwork" is far too insignificant to even consider.

Is the 30 days sufficient time to train people?
Since I and my Club's IPs do not TRAIN under the IP program, then it is not really fair for me to say. Very few newbies complete my Club's rather extensive Solo-Qualification within 30 days. Some do if they are fairly aggressive.
I seldom will instruct more than 4 flights of 10-15 min. per session. Over that is time wasted. I seldom solo a newbie with less than 20 flights of which at least 5 must be on busy days at the field. Most take 25 - 30 flights to perform to our standards.
So it all comes down to individual scheduling. If a guy can make 2 sessions a week, 4 flights per session then that would be 32 flights in a 28 day period. Therefore 30 days should be ample.

For informational purposes: There was a time when we did train guys under the IP program. However those people usually got to where they could T-O and land and BINGO they headed for the outlaw fields or school yards. Never to be seen again where AMA and Club dues were to be found. So NO LONGER will I do that nor is it allowed at Jetero RC Club, Inc. In addition, when some yahoo breaks a school building window or hits a kid watching, I don't care to be named as the one that taught him those tricks.[:@]

Personally I think the Introductory Pilot Program is very good just as it is. There is sufficient latitude for clubs and individuals to tailor it to their own local needs. It definitely does not need a bunch of "Consultants" that have not been involved with club management and RC Instructing for at least 10 years, to try to change it.[>:]

Edited; 'some' vice 'come' to read "....some yahoo..."
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Old 04-12-2005, 09:23 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Horrace

Thanks for taking the time to put forth your experiences and opinions. I hope others will follow your lead.

JR
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Old 04-12-2005, 09:34 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

We use the IP program to give insurance coverage while we are training the person and they are waiting for their AMA membership. We require that students join WyMoPa before we start them in the IP program. Needless to say that gives us 100 % for joining us and AMA. We have never had anyone question our policy. Of course the next club is 2 hours away at 80 MPH.

The paperwork isn't any burden.


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Old 04-12-2005, 09:56 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Allow me to add another question. Do clubs use this in conjunction with local hobby shops, city resources such as news letters to residents, or in advertisements (or in other ways) in an attempt to draw new people into the hobby?
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Old 04-12-2005, 10:29 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

We have had an influx of new members.
The AMA policy only allows a person to go up once without AMA insurance.
Since many people will say they have applied but have no proof, the IP program allows us to be covered while they we wait for proof.
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Old 04-12-2005, 10:43 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs


ORIGINAL: J_R

Allow me to add another question. Do clubs use this in conjunction with local hobby shops, city resources such as news letters to residents, or in advertisements (or in other ways) in an attempt to draw new people into the hobby?
>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Jetero R/C, Huffman, TX. Sat. April 30, 2005 9am-4pm. AMA required for registered pilots.
Come out and help us celebrate our 9th year at this field. Fly what you bring. No landing fee. Free lunch for all registered pilots, Anniversary cake to all. Over $360.00 in pilot giveaways.
Friendly taxi course competition.
Plaques awarded for Peoples Choice Sport, Peoples Choice Scale, Longest Distance Traveled, Most Flights, 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the taxi competition.
Have not had a RC lesson yet? From 11am to 1pm Jetero will have one of its five pilot stations open for a free flight lesson.

Directions and Flyer at www.jetero.com

Jim Sterner, Contest/Event Director. address on the web site.
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Intro Pilots will do this.
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Old 04-12-2005, 11:52 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Answer to the second question, yes we do advertise that we will teach newcomers. The local city and recreation groups list us in their materials.

Rich
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Old 04-13-2005, 10:29 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

My club has maintained several IntoPilots over the years. We were one of the clubs that got the AMA to change the number allowed to each club up from three.

In general the program does not work because there is entirely too much paperwork. I know of one or two who have been trained using this 'tool'.

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Old 04-13-2005, 08:27 PM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs


ORIGINAL: Jim Branaum

My club has maintained several IntoPilots over the years. We were one of the clubs that got the AMA to change the number allowed to each club up from three.

In general the program does not work because there is entirely too much paperwork. I know of one or two who have been trained using this 'tool'.
Aaahh, Jim the Unlettered: Every since the program began a club could get extra IPs by rerquest. NBFD! So now they just go for the $$.

I suppose tha paperwork does burden you somewhat like the Texas 25-103. [:-] Oh well, I hope you aren't so burdened with the one REALLY IMPORTANT paperwork job. You can manage that one can you not? [>:]
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Old 04-14-2005, 10:43 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Horrace

As far as I know, the EC is happy with the present program. From the few answers here, it appears that the program is being used as a workaround for those that have applied for an AMA membership and have not received one yet. One of the bright spots with this program is that the individual clubs can tailor it to their use. IMO, no program should be forced down the club’s throats.

Having said that, only 16% of AMA clubs have chosen to become Intro Pilot clubs. It has been my experience, with three different clubs, that they are not interested in the program due to the paperwork involved. Whether paperwork is a legitimate concern, or not, is, obviously open for debate, but 84% of the clubs have chosen not to become Intro Pilot clubs.

During the previous three years, three incidents involving buddy-boxes were reported to the AMA. Two of those went to insurance claims. Both, in my opinion, could be classified as minor.

Clubs are allowed to give any non-AMA member one flight , and being an Intro Pilot club is not a condition of that flight.

Horrace, can you think of any reason that clubs, IF IF IF, the individual club chooses, should not be able to allow more flights to non-AMA members using a buddy-box for training? Insurance does not appear to be an issue, since both the Intro Pilot program and the one flight program allow this type of flight. Again, if it were allowed, it should be at the discretion of the club and not forced down the club’s throat, IMO.

Would such a program allow for more promotion of the hobby as a wholesome activity? Would it allow clubs to be more aggressive in promoting the hobby? Would it be worth it, even if the trainee did not become a member of the club or the AMA, since the trainee would, at the least, receive training about frequency conflicts and some rudimentary safety training?

Horrace, these questions are not directed to your club, specifically, since you have a program in place, but are soliciting your opinion, and those of anyone else that wants to respond.
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Old 04-14-2005, 11:56 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

ORIGINAL: J_R

Horrace

//snip//
One of the bright spots with this program is that the individual clubs can tailor it to their use. IMO, no program should be forced down the club’s throats.
Yup, that's whut ah said!

Clubs are allowed to give any non-AMA member one flight , and being an Intro Pilot club is not a condition of that flight.
JR, that isn't exactly so. Without checking, IIRC, any AMA member may give one buddy-box flight to a non-AMA-member, not using that non-AMA-member's machine. Now if a suitable machine is available and the club has -- just for illustration -- 10 AMA member pilots, then each pilot could give one lesson to the non-AMA-member. One can devise many paths around this particular road-block.

EDITED TO ADD: The above statement by me is NOT CORRECT. In fact the document DOES limit the non-AMA-member person to a total of ONE BB flight. I GOOFED AS I DID NOT RECALL CORRECTLY. Never claimed to be a virgin in that department.

Horrace, can you think of any reason that clubs, IF IF IF, the individual club chooses, should not be able to allow more flights to non-AMA members using a buddy-box for training? Insurance does not appear to be an issue, since both the Intro Pilot program and the one flight program allow this type of flight. Again, if it were allowed, it should be at the discretion of the club and not forced down the club’s throat, IMO.
The current limitations do present a method of risk-control which can be a point when negotiating the cost of insurance. Like any other restricted activity, how far will things go, and how many other paths will be found? Where is the line drawn?
Actually, just by talking around, I rather believe that few clubs pay a whole lot of attention to this item and pretty much do as they please for the day. Like on the freeway, so many have a beer in one hand, a cell phone in the other and are 25MPH over the speed limit. If they get caught that is one thing, if they don't -- 99.9% -- then that's OK!

Would such a program allow for more promotion of the hobby as a wholesome activity? Would it allow clubs to be more aggressive in promoting the hobby? Would it be worth it, even if the trainee did not become a member of the club or the AMA, since the trainee would, at the least, receive training about frequency conflicts and some rudimentary safety training?
JR, in my somewhat experienced life with this situation, I will say very probably YES to all those questions. HOWEVER, there is one big point that no one considers much when they only consider theory and legalese.

The point is that many active fliers LIKE to fly their models. In this day and age, modeling time is very precious, especially so for the working man with a family. When one goes to the field, with 1-4 models and never gets to unload anything other than maybe a trainer to use for newbies, then it isn't a really good day. []
In my 130 member club, instructors are few, and some that are willing to instruct are not very well qualified. The very best pilots have no interest in instructing, and just simply do their own thing -- FLYING THEIR 3-D or whatever the latest fad is, or practicing for competition events.

So while in theory, I say yes to your questions, the real world is something else and those dedicated to promoting the sport are few in number. That is evident by the few that ever look at this forum when compared to the other forums.

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Old 04-14-2005, 02:07 PM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs


ORIGINAL: Hossfly

SNIP

The point is that many active fliers LIKE to fly their models. In this day and age, modeling time is very precious, especially so for the working man with a family. When one goes to the field, with 1-4 models and never gets to unload anything other than maybe a trainer to use for newbies, then it isn't a really good day. []

SNIP

Hey Horrible,
This is a perfect example of why I disagree with the philosophy you insist on trying to shove down the throats of others. It is simply wrong and ignores the importance of what we are really doing.

I enjoy sharing my hobby with other potential entrants and new students. If I show up at the field and spend the entire day flying students and never unpack my airplane, I view it as a very successful and fulling day. I know many that have the exact same view on flying with trainer boxes as I do.

Wonder which approach builds the club and AMA more. . . .
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Old 04-14-2005, 07:49 PM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Reply to ORIGINAL: Hossfly

ORIGINAL: J_R

<snip>
Clubs are allowed to give any non-AMA member one flight , and being an Intro Pilot club is not a condition of that flight.
JR, that isn't exactly so. Without checking, IIRC, any AMA member may give one buddy-box flight to a non-AMA-member, not using that non-AMA-member's machine. Now if a suitable machine is available and the club has -- just for illustration -- 10 AMA member pilots, then each pilot could give one lesson to the non-AMA-member. One can devise many paths around this particular road-block.
Hey Hoss -

I did check. Here is what it (AMA Doc 911) says: "For non-AMA members wishing to experience a "hands-on" model flight, the Academy does allow this, on a one-time basis per person ONLY. Seems clear enough to me what person gets "one-time"
Horrace, can you think of any reason that clubs, IF IF IF, the individual club chooses, should not be able to allow more flights to non-AMA members using a buddy-box for training? Insurance does not appear to be an issue, since both the Intro Pilot program and the one flight program allow this type of flight. Again, if it were allowed, it should be at the discretion of the club and not forced down the club’s throat, IMO.
The current limitations do present a method of risk-control which can be a point when negotiating the cost of insurance. Like any other restricted activity, how far will things go, and how many other paths will be found? Where is the line drawn?
Actually, just by talking around, I rather believe that few clubs pay a whole lot of attention to this item and pretty much do as they please for the day. Like on the freeway, so many have a beer in one hand, a cell phone in the other and are 25MPH over the speed limit. If they get caught that is one thing, if they don't -- 99.9% -- then that's OK!
Regarding risk control, do you really think the newbie's flying activity on the buddy-box, which requires that he fly using only his AMA member host's model and equipment and of course be tied to the buddy box umbilical cord, is mitigated in any way if he instead flies under the Intro Program provisions, which allow him to use his model and equipment and does require the use of the buddy box? Regarding how far it (unrestricted buddy boxing) can go, that would be up to the club rather than being dictated by AMA. Are you more comfortable having AMA making your decisions for you? I do understand that when big brother leaves people to think for themselves it is troubling for some, particularly those that lean to the left.
BTW, AMA is not an insurance company, or so I'm told. Funny how often insurance reasons are cited as justification for AMA actions/inaction. Repeat that mantra as many times as it takes to believe it.
Do you see some advantage to keeping rules that you acknowledge are widely ignored? My position FWIW is any rules that are not worth enforcing rigorously should be stricken. Unenforced rules are a favored tool of control freaks. They rely on having them in their kit to apply selectively when they want to stick it to somebody. I despise them for that very reason.

Would such a program allow for more promotion of the hobby as a wholesome activity? Would it allow clubs to be more aggressive in promoting the hobby? Would it be worth it, even if the trainee did not become a member of the club or the AMA, since the trainee would, at the least, receive training about frequency conflicts and some rudimentary safety training?
JR, in my somewhat experienced life with this situation, I will say very probably YES to all those questions. HOWEVER, there is one big point that no one considers much when they only consider theory and legalese.

The point is that many active fliers LIKE to fly their models. In this day and age, modeling time is very precious, especially so for the working man with a family. When one goes to the field, with 1-4 models and never gets to unload anything other than maybe a trainer to use for newbies, then it isn't a really good day. []
In my 130 member club, instructors are few, and some that are willing to instruct are not very well qualified. The very best pilots have no interest in instructing, and just simply do their own thing -- FLYING THEIR 3-D or whatever the latest fad is, or practicing for competition events.

So while in theory, I say yes to your questions, the real world is something else and those dedicated to promoting the sport are few in number. That is evident by the few that ever look at this forum when compared to the other forums.
Hoss, the point you made is NOT relevant in any way whatever. Changing the buddy-box restriction has no impact on the guys that would rather do their own thing than assist a newbie. It only enables those are willing to assist the newbies. You say "those dedicated to promoting the sport are few in number." I have not observed anything to controvert that statement, and so I'm willing to stipulate it as fact, noting of course that 'few' is a relative term. Nonetheless, those few are charged with the responsibility for the future of that aspect of model aviation that depends on the state-of-health of AMA. Who/what else is going to bring new members into AMA; tiered rates, unsolicited DVDs, credit cards, a media advertising blitz? I don't see anything in these schemes that could hold a candle to existing AMA members that are willing to promote the sport by helping potential modelers get their wings. If those dedicated to promoting the sport are not enabled to do so, the future of AMA doesn't need a rocket scientist to predict. Take the demographics of the current membership, apply the mortality tables, and query the MBA types for an estimate of how far the the membership can diminish before the organization implodes.

I don't see removing the buddy-box restrictions as a panacea for AMA by any means. Just one small step toward enabling those that would bring in new members. Gotta start somewhere, else throw in the towel.

Abel

Edited to fix fat-fingered formatting (F^3)
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Old 04-14-2005, 10:53 PM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs


ORIGINAL: abel_pranger

SNIP

I don't see removing the buddy-box restrictions as a panacea for AMA by any means. Just one small step toward enabling those that would bring in new members. Gotta start somewhere, else throw in the towel.

Abel
Abel,

I think you have hit on one of the most important things that the run of the mill "manager" types miss. It is NOT the organization that does ANYTHING to make it happen, but the membership that invests in the future. I also agree that there are not many (enough?) doing it, but this is a great place to start.

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Old 04-15-2005, 11:04 AM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Hi Abel

It appears the topic of unlimited buddy-boxing is as about as exciting to the members of this forum as it is to the EC. Someone, not me, got Rich Hanson to agree to raise this issue. The EC does not appear to have major opposition to the idea, but, it also shows no major support for the idea. It’s looking to me like this idea will die for lack of interest, both in the EC and in this forum. I think it is a good step toward advancing modeling as well as the AMA. I guess I am wrong.

JR
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Old 04-15-2005, 11:16 AM
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JR,
I think it a great idea. Lets get the rule change in and see where it leads
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:13 PM
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Crashem

We know that some of the EC members read this stuff. If there were enough sentiment expressed, one way other the other, it might make a difference. It would be even better if people wrote to the EC members and expressed their wishes.
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:22 PM
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JR,

I'll see if I can't email my DVP. Dave M if you happen to read this I'm in favor of allowing multiple Buddy box flights for NON AMA members
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:40 PM
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs

Hey Hoss -

I did check. Here is what it (AMA Doc 911) says: "For non-AMA members wishing to experience a "hands-on" model flight, the Academy does allow this, on a one-time basis per person ONLY. Seems clear enough to me what person gets "one-time"
YUP! You be right. I be wrong. Made an edited statement to that effect in my post. Thanks for the correction. When backed into a box where a look-it-up is required, that does always lend a strong reinforcement to my memory banks. I think I got it now.

Regarding risk control, do you really think the newbie's flying activity on the buddy-box, which requires that he fly using only his AMA member host's model and equipment and of course be tied to the buddy box umbilical cord, is mitigated in any way if he instead flies under the Intro Program provisions, which allow him to use his model and equipment and does require the use of the buddy box?
Now it's YOUR time to look it up: >>>>>
"Intro pilots should use a model with which they are familiar. If the non-AMA member’s model is used, it should be
carefully checked and the Intro Pilot should fly it until familiar with it. High performance aircraft should not be used for
training. For radio control clubs, a “buddy box” is recommended. Aircraft must be identified with the owner’s name and
address, or the club’s name, address, and charter number."

I never said anything about what I actually think -- I said, "The current limitations do present a method of risk-control which can be a point when negotiating the cost of insurance." I do not negotiate such item. AMA does that when they buy the policy.
I, myself, then questioned the point.
However as a point, I see no reason for unlimited buddy boxing. I think the current rule is far too restrictive. If one wants to do unlimited, then fork up $5 and be an Intro pilot and go for it. Anybody that can send time typing here can fill a few blanks of paper and send it in whenever he feels the need.
If you were ever in the military and had to take military exams, you well know the acronym, RTFQ. Well a-p, RTF Text. I well know that AMA is not an insurance company as I have stated somewhere a few times before. AMA DOES purchase an insurance policy that covers the AMA, Charter Clubs, Chapters, and Members.

Hoss, the point you made is NOT relevant in any way whatever. Changing the buddy-box restriction has no impact on the guys that would rather do their own thing than assist a newbie.
You are entitled to such opinion if you wish. I think differently. I have tried for the past two years to get entirely out of providing instruction. 30+ years of it is adequate to satisfy my needs, and repay the two instructional flights I received.
However the masses are far too self-serving to help others after they take so freely of that offered them at some time past. So who finally gives in to doing it? I'm really tired of holding hands of old farts like me and listening to the know-it-alls in the 25-40 groups. Actually the teens are pretty decent folk as compared to the others. So I am glad of our 3 times limit to either join the club or hit the highway.
I can well rationalize my position with the way AMA throws away money to support some good ol' boys in a couple publishing endeavors, but makes NO effort to get modeling in the public's eye.
No guilt here. For those that want to do differently, well GO GIT "EM. Best of luck to you all. Take it to Koranda, Maloney, and Brown. They will MARKET it for you.
I just Wed. maidened the 3rd new machine for this year, (GP Lil Toni, Dub Jet 90) have a 90 size P-51 to cover and paint, and one Big Bird to get together before the June journey north. See ya'll.
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Old 04-15-2005, 05:02 PM
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ORIGINAL: Hossfly
<snip>
You are entitled to such opinion if you wish. I think differently. I have tried for the past two years to get entirely out of providing instruction. 30+ years of it is adequate to satisfy my needs, and repay the two instructional flights I received.
However the masses are far too self-serving to help others after they take so freely of that offered them at some time past. So who finally gives in to doing it? I'm really tired of holding hands of old farts like me and listening to the know-it-alls in the 25-40 groups. Actually the teens are pretty decent folk as compared to the others. So I am glad of our 3 times limit to either join the club or hit the highway.
I can well rationalize my position .............

Hoss-

ROFL! You sure as 'ell can well rationalize your position.

You can't 'just say no,' so you fall back on AMA's restrictive rules to cop out of doing something you don't want to do. What a great concept! Doncha wish Big Bro' would put restrictions on items in the honeydew list the little lady of the house prepares for you?

Abel
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Old 04-15-2005, 05:55 PM
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Jim Branaum
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Default RE: Questions for Intro Pilots and Clubs


ORIGINAL: abel_pranger


ORIGINAL: Hossfly
<snip>
You are entitled to such opinion if you wish. I think differently. I have tried for the past two years to get entirely out of providing instruction. 30+ years of it is adequate to satisfy my needs, and repay the two instructional flights I received.
However the masses are far too self-serving to help others after they take so freely of that offered them at some time past. So who finally gives in to doing it? I'm really tired of holding hands of old farts like me and listening to the know-it-alls in the 25-40 groups. Actually the teens are pretty decent folk as compared to the others. So I am glad of our 3 times limit to either join the club or hit the highway.
I can well rationalize my position .............

Hoss-

ROFL! You sure as 'ell can well rationalize your position.

You can't 'just say no,' so you fall back on AMA's restrictive rules to cop out of doing something you don't want to do. What a great concept! Doncha wish Big Bro' would put restrictions on items in the honeydew list the little lady of the house prepares for you?

Abel
ROFLOLPIMP!

Abel,
By now you should KNOW that Horrible has this set of rules the great unwashed (you, I, and everyone else) is to follow and those that control what he is going to do. Haven't you noticed that they don't seem to be the same? Rationalization and justification seem to be his way to weasel out of what he says we should do.

The problem with the Intro Pilot program is that it requires those of us to do lots of paperwork. That drives the good will out of it and makes many say "Join and I will help" rather than use the Intro Pilot program. I would much rather see the Intro Pilot program replaced by the simple edict that the instructor using a buddy box has the coverage since he has final control. I am reasonably sure that change in approach will also give the AMA a better shot at the park flyer bunch. Worst case there would be teaching them about interference. Sure looks like a win win deal to me where the Intro Pilot program seems to be punishing those of us willing to try to train and recruit those outside the AMA.

Too bad it is reported that there is little support for that change, it could be a major step toward changing the direction of our organization. Sometimes it is hard to see the forest for the trees.


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