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  1. #26
    speedracerntrixie's Avatar
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    ORIGINAL: proparc


    ORIGINAL: Jon Wold

    What the world needs is another Hanno who can win the World champs by good margin, flying a home made balsa plane fitted with nothing but Hobby King motors and batteries. And such a plane would not have a canalizer...
    Really great post!! Sounds like a job for Andrew Jesky.

    Not that I am a pilot of that caliber but this is pretty much what I have done. Was test flown today and shows promise. The airframe cost about 300.00 to build and maybe another 500 for electronics and accessories.

    As to the topic on hand, I think the 2M rule is fine as is however I think the weight limit has a direct link to the cost of airplanes. To get a faom and composite airplane down to that weight requires more labor and higher cost materials. CF landing gear and wing tubes are a must. To hand lay a fiberglass fuse that is light yet strong requires some high cost core materials. IMOif the weight limit were increased to 13 lbs we would see some conventional building methods come back and with less expensive materials. The cream of the crop airplanes would still be around but it would open the door to other manufacturers.

    Mike, to explain why a 40% airframe costs 1/2 of a pattern airplane is easy. Most use conventional building techniques and materials and because for a while now giant scale aerobatics has been in vouge so the number of airplanes sold is considerably higher.

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  2. #27
    MTK's Avatar
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    From about the mid 80's (post Prettner's Calypso win) to mid 90's (pre engine displacement lift), competitive pattern costs were in check. You could get a bunch of competitive aiframes in the air (excluding the radio system) for less that 1000$ US. Plane options were aplenty; engines options were fewer but still, cost was NOT out of sight, at least not here in the US

    When the engine displacement was lifted in the mid 90's in favor of size and weight limits, cost skyrocketed to what we have today. Pattern schedule complexity has demanded more from the models..... not just the planes but the complete flying package.

    Do I want less complicated schedules?? NO!
    Do I want less expensive flying packages for everyone? YES!
    Is that a contradiction? YUP, probably, at least in the current state of the sport where the vast majority want plug and play, instant pattern capability.

    Someone who wanted to scratch build and had the required skill set, could easily build a world beater on a budget.
    Regards,
    MattK
    (Rcmaster199@aol.com)

  3. #28

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    [/quote]
    From speedracer

    Not that I am a pilot of that caliber but this is pretty much what I have done. Was test flown today and shows promise. The airframe cost about 300.00 to build and maybe another 500 for electronics and accessories.

    [/quote]

    Your airplane looks extremely interesting. Is their a chance you could start another thread giving us the 411 on just exactly what you are doing here?

  4. #29
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    Though I appreciate the drive to keep prices in the range of "Hobby'ists"....
    I would hate for that drive to effectively limit research....

    Pattern planes of today fly better then pattern planes of 10 years ago right???

    (I Hope they do!)

    As someone mentioned... Pattern is the Formula 1 of RC.... it oughta be cutting edge and always exploring Improvement....

    Sometimes the drive for Low Cost inhibits improvement...

    and it is not unusual for the "New Whiz-Bang triple throwdown super whammy Shizzy" of today that is exotic and 'spensive to trickle down to
    the masses in a fairly short amount of time....
    LOOKING FOR ENGINEERING WORK ON UAV'S?

  5. #30

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    While I'm not advocating any sort of change.. a 3M purpose-designed F3A airplane with no attempt to follow any full-scale airplane would absolutely destroy a similar 2M airplane. A 3M CA Visa or Onas would easily outperform the 2M version.
    Doug Cronkhite

  6. #31
    mithrandir's Avatar
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    ORIGINAL: Doug Cronkhite

    While I'm not advocating any sort of change.. a 3M purpose-designed F3A airplane with no attempt to follow any full-scale airplane would absolutely destroy a similar 2M airplane. A 3M CA Visa or Onas would easily outperform the 2M version.

    It would destroy a Carden or a Compy or a Aeroworks or a...well... EVERYTHING that exists today!!!

    lol

    he he he he
    LOOKING FOR ENGINEERING WORK ON UAV'S?

  7. #32

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    Pattern is the F1 of aerobatics?

    Ok so then we should have a minimum weight limit not a maximum.
    If the weight limit is set as a minimum then the incentive to go as light and exensive as possible goes away. More manufacturers will get involved, generating competition. Competition brings the price down.

    The maximum weight limit is the BIG problem.

  8. #33

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    ORIGINAL: TimBle

    Pattern is the F1 of aerobatics?

    Ok so then we should have a minimum weight limit not a maximum.
    If the weight limit is set as a minimum then the incentive to go as light and exensive as possible goes away. More manufacturers will get involved, generating competition. Competition brings the price down.

    The maximum weight limit is the BIG problem.
    You don't have to jump from one extreme to the other on the weight limit. Simply removing the weight limit (and keeping the size limit) would keep the door open for guys who don't want or can't afford exotic materials. Larger size for better presentation is of course desirable, but having a MINIMUM limit will effectively shift perception that everyone needs a bigger airplane since the minimum weight would best be achieved by first getting to the larger size, and then decking out the plane with whatever goodies one likes to meet that weight. Neither is a cost saving or attractive feature for the longevity of the sport.

    The weight limit seems a vestigial artifact to me also. Often a max weight limit would be imposed for safety reasons to limit the energy effects of crashes or other mishaps. 5 KG now seems small given the existence of IMAC but IMAC is a new category so perhaps nobody who made that rule thought planes would ever get this big. Perhaps more arguments should be made for its removal.
    Arguing with an engineer is like wrestling a pig. Everyone gets dirty and the pig likes it.

  9. #34

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    The 5kg weight limit is probably why 30cc fourstokes in monoplanes aren't trying to compete with DA50's/DA75's in 13-14lb biplanes that would still easily fit within the 2x2m box.

    However, two-strokes have already been deemed, by the F3A elite community, as being unsuitable for the job in any capacity in the presence of a suitable four-stroke option, and if YS brought out a horizontal twin, supercharged, fuel injected 60cc fourstroke the petrol two-strokes would (very quickly) go the way of the Hanno special and 140RX....

    The current rules already allow a huge range of airframes and engines to be used, more than ever in the history of the sport IMHO, it's just that the pointy end seems to have gotten a whole lot sharper, but then again, I'm sure a full house Curare, with Kraft radio and Kraft (or Webra) engine back in the 70's/80's wasn't sitting in every man's hanger..

  10. #35
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    I understand you who live in the USA find pattern planes and equipment expensive. For me who lives in Norway (Europe) pattern plans and RC equipment have become cheaper the last 10 years. I remember paying 9.39 NOK for 1 US$ in 2001. Today I only have to pay 5.50 NOK for 1 US$. Three years ago I only payed 4.90 NOK. That’s when I bought the Futaba 14MZ. I don’t think it will be correct to changing international rules due to exchange rates.

    Just my opinion.


    Henning




  11. #36

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    I think dropping the weight limit would be a good thing. It would allow some less high tech 2m ARFs to become available. Meaning more cheaper alternatives for people. I also think the voltage limit on electric power systems is arbitrary.

  12. #37

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    I believe that 5 kg is universal limit for FAI with exception of scale. Is this correct? If so is going to be difficult to change it. VB
    Vicente \"Vince\" Bortone

  13. #38

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    The only problem I see is the fact electrics have to make weight WITH battery. Current size and voltage limitations would keep things from changinjg dramatically! [meaning no incentitive to increase costs to make weight] This would open up a lot of older aircraft and current IC designs to be converted to electric which has definitely become the power of choice for the majority of pattern flyers and does not affect current IC flyers!
    Just my 2 cents worth!
    Dick

  14. #39
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    It doesn't matter on the weighing standards now, I suspect less than 20% of the fliers at the Nats will be IC. Next year even less. Within 3-4 year none.

    Removing the 5k weight rule in FAI will end our sport as we know it. FAI design aircraft trickle down to the AMA classes every time, I suspect the same in every other country that has a lower class system. No weight limit and no engine limit will explode aircraft size and cost. You don't see many bipes now due to the weight issue, designers continue to try to design bipes that fit in the current rules. It's dang hard to do, remove that rule and you'll see 75cc 2x2 Bipes and bigger. The only limiting factor then will be noise.

    I do agree with removing the weight rule in the AMA classes, heck the only place that I've ever seen check weight and noise is at the nats, even then sparingly. Never seen the 2x2 measurement or the voltage limit checked.

    Tim
    Be a kid forever, fly models.

  15. #40
    mithrandir's Avatar
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    Maybe "They" ought to say "Officially" that weight doesn't matter unless you are lining up for the Team?
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  16. #41

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    not sure what the hang up is about size, maybe a some okes with small ..... planes.

    I would not advocate changing the dimensions of a F3A pattern plane. The current 2mx2m is ideal.
    It just needs to have the weight standardised so that the class is competitve. With a 2x2 dimension limit and 5Kg minimum Most plamnes will weigh in at 5Kg + - the tolerance. That levels the playing field considerably without restricting manufacturers and keeps those without deep pockets in with a fighting chance.
    It also allows a choice of power plant to suit availability and persoanl preference. Maybe engine manufacturers will rekindle interest in engines and not electric motors.

    For the lower classes limit the planes to .90size (2 stroke), 1.6 x 1.6  and simply ban carbon / kevlar and moulded Wood fibre composites. Built up structures covered with shrink film like monocote, oracover etc only.

    It not really that hard to do, theres just a lack of will power. the sky will not fall on our heads if the rules are revised.

  17. #42
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    IMHO I think there is only really one change needed.

    Raise the weight limit to 5.5 kg INCLUDING all fuels and batteries.

    That would level the playing field and maybe increase the durability of some electric airframes. Size and proportion of the current rules are working well.
    Never left one up there yet.......

  18. #43
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    From what I've experienced you can just about turn up with any old clump and fly.
    Don't ever remember my planes being turned towards the scales.
    If you are at all competitive (meaning you have the slightest real world chance of being anywhere near the top of he board) you'll have NO problems making the 5kg rule.
    Just go and fly 5.5kg- 6.5 kgs... don't matter.

    Best Regards: davidbathe.com
    Occasional Aircraft Illustrations.

  19. #44
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    Some very good points here, this is a very interesting discussion.
    I think there's a max 37 volt rule as well? It's the electric equivalent of noise restriction. Noise regulations does not favour a 75cc engine, but I agree that we'd see 2 meter bipes with bigger engines given a lifted weight limit.

    I also agree it would lower costs if you were able to weigh planes without batteries. Planes would not be that much heavier, as there's a limit to how much a 10s pack can haul, but 5,2 kg with battery means you can get away with a lot less fancy gadgets inside and less expensive airframes.
    F3A blog: http://www.aerowold.com

  20. #45

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    we have raised the weight limit for aircraft in the Sportsman, Advanced and MAsters class to 5.5kg for the past year.
    It did  not stop the "need" for a 4kg Carbon/kevlar 2x2 CPLR or Herbert ship costing $8000-00...in Novice, through to F3A. Now if in sportsman you're flying a .60size Edge and you're sompeting against a 2x2, you may as well go home and watch golf because you're a spectator anyway.

    No one builds to a maximum weight limit, they build to beat it and by a large margin and thats where the cost escalates.

    If there is a minimum weight limit then no matter how expensive the materials you throw at the plane, it will still weigh close to what much cheaper aircraft are hitting the scale at weigh in. That closes the performance gap considerably.

    If all planes should need to meet the weight limit in an ready to fly state i.e. with fuel or batteries on board then If you fly electric then you carry the weight throughout your flight routine whereas a liquid fuel powered plane burns weight off.
    Thats not a bad thing if the schedule is designed to cater for the fact that the flight performance advantage will shift through the schedule.

    At our clubs recent Annual Airshow, (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4nbBjU012A)  I had a few enquiries from dad'w wanting to get their son's into aerobatics. What struck me is that no matter their backgrond or affluency level the question about cost always comes into and everyone wants to knwo what the best equipments costs and why. Theres no getting away from it that a large scale aerobat is going to cost a fraction of the amount a Pattern plane costs. So they make up their minds that Large scale is more exciting and since its cheaper they can have more planes. Simple.

    Imagine Pattern moved to 25-27% scale aerobats... Would it push the price of Large scale up?
    I doubt it as the large scale planes manufacturers know that their market is willing to pay X and not X x 10.
    Pattern plane manufacturers lack competition. The only way to improve competition is to increase interest from both pilots and manufacturers.

  21. #46
    Jon Wold's Avatar
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    ORIGINAL: David Bathe

    From what I've experienced you can just about turn up with any old clump and fly.
    Don't ever remember my planes being turned towards the scales.
    If you are at all competitive (meaning you have the slightest real world chance of being anywhere near the top of he board) you'll have NO problems making the 5kg rule.
    Just go and fly 5.5kg- 6.5 kgs... don't matter.

    The man has a point, nobody weighs your plane in a local comps or at practice. To get started, just turning up at a contest seems to be the big hindrance for most. Do we have a PR-problem?
    F3A blog: http://www.aerowold.com

  22. #47

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    I have been told that the voltage limit is not arbitrary, but rather a safety concern. A battery of more than 40 Volts can push enough amperage to kill you.

  23. #48
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    From the current AMA rulebook.

    Sportsman, Intermediate and Advanced weight may be 5115g.
    Voltage is 42.56 max all classes.

    http://www.modelaircraft.org/files/2...erobatics1.pdf

    IMHO I still think that if the weight limit was set to 5.5kg including fuel and batteries for all classes, there would be a large leeway to accept some very nice, safe and affordable airframes into the market. It may even prevent the "electric only" restraint that some manufacturers have had to impose to meet the current 5kg limit. Granted that one can presently fly a regional contest with a heavier machine but manufacturers do not want to develope an airframe that cannot compete at the National or World level if one chose to do so with their product.

    Maximum weight and size limits are still needed so as to limit aircraft performance and keep affordability within reason. A 5.5kg limit is a good  and simple compromise.

    So how do we go about to lobby the FAI ?

    Regards

    MJ
    Never left one up there yet.......

  24. #49

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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule

    ORIGINAL: Strat2003
    I have been told that the voltage limit is not arbitrary, but rather a safety concern. A battery of more than 40 Volts can push enough amperage to kill you.
    I did something really stupid years ago, and put my big fat sweaty hand right across the output of a 50V transformer (voltage peaks~70V) and received a wonderful tingling sensation in my hand. Not something I would like across my chest, though not as painful as an electric fence though.

    I think it's been stated here that in the US, the maximum weight has been lifted for the lower classes, so in the US at least the 5kg rule isn't a big problem for anyone starting out. In Aus nobody checks weight so it's not a problem here either.

    The unlimited engine size rule is why planes today have a weight problem. I don't remeber too many people complaining about the 5kg limit when we had .61 sized planes, but there sure was a lot of time and money spent trying to get the weight down.

  25. #50
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    RE: F3A Two Meter Rule


    ORIGINAL: mdjohnson

    From the current AMA rulebook.

    Sportsman, Intermediate and Advanced weight may be 5115g.
    Voltage is 42.56 max all classes.

    http://www.modelaircraft.org/files/2...erobatics1.pdf

    IMHO I still think that if the weight limit was set to 5.5kg including fuel and batteries for all classes, there would be a large leeway to accept some very nice, safe and affordable airframes into the market. It may even prevent the ''electric only'' restraint that some manufacturers have had to impose to meet the current 5kg limit. Granted that one can presently fly a regional contest with a heavier machine but manufacturers do not want to develope an airframe that cannot compete at the National or World level if one chose to do so with their product.

    Maximum weightΒ*and size limits are still needed so as to limit aircraft performance and keep affordability within reason. A 5.5kg limit is a goodΒ* and simple compromise.

    So how do we go about to lobby the FAI ?

    Regards

    MJ

    It'll never happen Murray! To modify the rules to weigh with fuel means that every plane at a world championships would have to refuel and weigh after the flight, electrics would not have to refuel but still weigh. Currently it is just by random chance that you would be weighed after the flight, I don't think the rules will change the rules to make operating a Worlds more challenging.

    I believe this has actually been presented before and defeated.
    Chad Northeast

    www.f3acanada.org


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