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Old 06-26-2002, 01:20 PM
  #1  
Jimmy Bananas
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The new issue of MA, the AMA presidents, message is very spooky...One quote:

" I truly believe that our sport is teetering on the brink, and that we could find ourselves subject to federal regulation if we do wake up and think about the consequences of not regulating ourselves"

OK sport fans,lets have your opinion, opinions, of this statement..please read the artcile.

this statement is on page 143...
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Old 06-26-2002, 06:20 PM
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Most clubs are still made up of older members along with newer recruits. Older members used to fly anything anywhere without regards to anything. Planes were by today's standard smaller and a lot less powerful. Newer ones have an awareness that this hobby governed by procedures and rules. So unless these are taken into the fold of disciplined approach to flying R/C they will assume from watching the older sometimes reckless pilots that it is OK to do anything.

Today's planes are bigger, faster and smoother, and engines are also bigger (much bigger) and more powerful than times past and can fly greater distances on their own. A fly away plane with 10 minutes of fuel travelling 125 MPH could technically travel 20 or so miles before decscending into someone's peaceful living room.

Now, the general public is less and less tolerent to the constant presence of high pitch noise and the threatening view of large flying models. They will not hesitate to complain to authorities at all levels. It hapened to us and WE were forced to make adjustments.

This past weekend our club held its annual IMAC precision meet. This activity was well attended and saw planes up to 40% size fly manouevers. Of course, there is nothing wrong with that except that our flying site is situated directly below the flight path of full size aircrafts on final to our local full size airport. As modelers we must realize that distance is a matter of perception. Friday morning past a full size Pilatus PC12 came by overhead while on the ground a R/C pilot was practicing the pattern with his 40% Extra 300. The R/C guys on the ground (except for one that I respect for his ability to judge distance fairly) sware that the Extra did not exceed the 500 foot limit and did not at any time fly in the direction of the Pilatus. This Pilatus belonged to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the pilot was a good friend of my. So I got his version and that of the aircraft mechani who was flying on board at the time. They both declared that the extra had just completed a loop when suddenly it flew straight up towards tha Pilatus to within 150 feet. Now this is very dangerous business (if not stupid). The RCMP pilot radioed to the tower to lodge a complaint which brought the local police to our site to investigate and identify the R/C pilot involved in this issue. This is the first time that such embarassment occurs for us and hopefully it will be the last. We have yet to hear about Transport Canada who investigates such incidents.

Do we need discipline? Of course we do...and right now at that, while we can still salvage what's left.

A suggestion: R/C pilots are going to have to start thinking a little bigger that their $5.00 budget. Only by investing together to buy the whole farm land will we be able to ensure that R/C can be practiced safely without being a threat and a nuissance to the neighborhood.
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Old 06-26-2002, 07:30 PM
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there are two many big words for me to undersatnd it.
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Old 06-26-2002, 07:49 PM
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Why does the AMA feature aircraft in their Magazine that violates its own rules, such as overweight aircraft on the cover. Why have a rule if you can get a waiver to fly anyway? I think the AMA president needs to clean its own house before she asks us local clubs to clean ours!
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Old 06-26-2002, 09:41 PM
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I think the whole point of that article was based on a newspaper that ran a story on how terrorist could use RC planes to dispence chemicals or bombs. Its so nice of the press to give those a**holes ideas. They also pointed out how a plane with with a pilot assist unit could fly itself for miles.
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Old 06-26-2002, 09:52 PM
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NOTA: Easy2Fly, it is not the words that are too big but the knowledge that is too small.

Speaking about AMA is like speaking about an abstract until you put real people in it...then you are hitting home. The AMA leadership and MAAC for that matter is made up of people that came from the rank and file and flew when the risks were minimal and flying sites were available for the asking. Things are now different, real different. So, if leadership was to clean-up their act, they probably would find themselves applying discipline against their own best friends. Nobody want to do that; so, this opens the gates wide open for abuse. Who wants to police his own friends. There is a code of ethics written and unwritten thus, it is up to every individual R/C'er to respect rule and order.
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Old 06-27-2002, 01:35 AM
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I highly doubt the sport "hobby", is teetering on the edge
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Old 06-27-2002, 01:49 PM
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Steven,

It may not be exactly teetering on the edge, but the more negative publicity that is lobbed at us (whether perceived or real) is definately not helping our case. Given the acitons last Sept., and how movies/tv portray rc as means to destroy things (the rc car chase in the clint eastwood movie, remote detonators for just about every terrorist tv show or movie), people perceive that there is a larger threat via just about any means possible. Throw in more noise complaints from neigbors near fields and larger aircraft being flown around, closer in and teetering on the edge of control (I'll admit to being one of the 3d people, so I'm not throwing stones in a glass house). The sport/hobby got national publicity because of the unfortunate accident in AZ where the gentleman was struck by his own plane and killed last month. Unforunately, it was mostly negative publicicty. Insurance renewal has become harder and more expensive to get/maintain, more and costlier claims are being made against the insurance (which isnt going to make it any easier or cheaper to get next go around).

He made mention to the magazines printing articles about planes being flown on autopilot and GPS. There was an article in MAN about a Kadet Senior that flew 26 miles unassisted from one field to another and back in Sarasota, FL. The only time a pilot had control was on takeoff and landing. The author stated what parts/costs/ and assembly techniques he used to pull this off. It was all up under $1000.00 (including the GPS, plane, radio, etc.)
I found that article totally fascinating and cool at that time, and still marvel at the brainpower and nads it took to pull it off. But, given how easily it is to have access to the information and equipment, it would not suprise me if someone is going to try to use a version of that for some form of evil-doing.
There will always be people in society who can take the most innocent of concepts or ideas, and pervert them into bad things. Unfortunately, that is part of human nature. Look at the web, it was created as a means to exchange educational information. Whats the % of valid content vs porn/hate/spam etc? Hotmail, while being a great free way to send and recvieve emails, was *******ized into a method for terrorists to communicate anonymously.

On Junkyard Wars last nite on TLC, they had a contest where they took two teams, gave them each a multi channel radio, and had them build full size r/c cars for a demolition derby. It would be very easy for someone to take that 1 hour long show, and *******ize that.

I'm not trying to be Chicken Little and say "the sky is falling, the sky is falling", but you do not have to be the greatest genius in the world to have access to the information, technology and hardware to do something like that. The gov't has to look at everything that is a credible threat, and our hobby, when taken to that extreme is a very credible threat. Obviously if it wasnt, our military wouldnt be developing and deploying as many RPV's as it is.

Just my $.02 (actually $.04, but I got it on sale)

Steve
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Old 06-27-2002, 02:38 PM
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On a positive note, did anyone see the program where they took rc airplanes or helicopters and used them to go in and inspect accident sites. The goal was to create a vehicle that would run without any pilot control once in the air. It would identify an accident site, any victims, what the dangers were, could measure fire temperature all the while transmitting the data back to a base station. The vision is that say after an earthquake you could send hundreds of these little things in to assess the situation without risking human life. Only the German team was successful with their helicopter version and blew away all of the competition. I guess there will always be some risk that comes along with the good.

Jeff
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Old 06-28-2002, 11:49 PM
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Default Disturbing

I didn't like the 'tone' of either Dave's article or Mr. Hunts' article - it sort of took the wind out of my sails.....

Maybe it should be said, maybe it shouldn't...maybe we are crying before we get hit?

I sure hope this hobby doesn't take a 'hit' from the US Gov't. - I know they'll say, "We from the government and we are here to help you...".

Jerry
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Old 06-29-2002, 11:20 AM
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I have to agree with the article from how the point of view pertains to urban living. Three years ago, I was VP of the last club within the city limits of Indianapolis, IN to loose their field. Since then the club has a great new field that is 20 miles away down a country road (US52).

More and more, we need to partnership with the community to preserve our flying fields. As the urban areas continue to grow, we have less and less space to fly unless we move to a rural area. Many of the clubs in Tennessee are part of the parks department and share their space with others. Here in Georgia, the Conley field is on an old landfill and we compromise with our many neighbors successfully. Each club needs to understand what is in their best interest to preserve their airspace. If a club does not fit within our growing society, they will be one of the defunct has beens that we continue to hear about every day.
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Old 06-30-2002, 12:49 AM
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I have said this a number of times and been grilled every time but I will say it again. We live in a world that is "sue happy and suddenly very suspicious of everything"--- and for years we have been able to fly anything we want -- where we want--when we want! Then come the Park Flyers that fly in the yard. When I first started flying and did not know about the AMA or clubs, I have been run away from more than one site because of the noise and because people were scared I was going to fly my 40 size PT 40 into their house---NOW I LIKE 1/3 SCALE!!!! What do you believe the people would think if I showed up now! I consider myself very fortunate that I have a field were there are no houses in site and we are for the most part "unrestricted"--I see Dave doing the best he and the AMA can do to keep things unregulated and people are constantly "calling for his head" because he is taking some measure to demonstrate that we are competant and safety minded. Oh well---I do believe it may be a bleak future
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Old 01-14-2003, 08:36 AM
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RCM ran a story many years back about a man who's hobby was Radio Controlled Aircraft. The story started as he loaded his plane, radio and flight box into his car late one afternoon, hid it all under boxes and blankets, then carefully drove out of town and into the desert. Finding a nice isolated spot he unloaded his plane and equipment, fueled up, cranked the engine and took off into the cool evening sky to enjoy some quality time. Then he heard a siren and saw a blinking red light approaching...a cop! The cop ordered him to land immediately. He confiscated his plane and equipment and arrested him for flying an R/C plane, an illegal act and punishable by jail time. It seems that flying any type of R/C was illegal throughout the USA! Die hard R/Cers resorted to this sort of clandestine activity to pursue their hobby, risking arrest and jail to do so. This of course was fiction, and at the time I thought was a waste of good plans space. The editor and publisher Tom Dewey, may he rest in peace, commented that hopefully it would never happen. Then, we had none of the problems of today so it was hard to even imagine that such a thing could happen. But........who knows?
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