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Are we really this bad?

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Are we really this bad?

Old 12-12-2009, 08:35 PM
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flyinrog
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Default Are we really this bad?

Stumbled across a MAN from January 09...it is ALL yesterdays news,,3 new helis,,never heard from again...way more than that in the airplane dept...12 months ago's brand new...is yesterdays news...ACE seemed to be the worst,,with the new "greener" .07,.18,.28 engines...I forgot all about the .28..havent heard much at all about the .18...and they had a "push to set" new lecky Heli that shoulda set the world on fire...but now they have a whole new line...is glow coming back?...is lecky getting bigger and better everyday?...too much change to keep up with....or is it just me?....Rog
Old 12-12-2009, 08:57 PM
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combatpigg
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Rog, It's a wonder to me what keeps the magazines going. I'm the only person that I've ever seen at a magazine rack looking at a model mag.
Old 12-12-2009, 09:05 PM
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Tom Nied
 
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Seems to be just the proliferation of the model aircraft industry. There's a whole bunch of guys who will never run a glow motor, too hard to master. Electric just turn it on and fly. I've been mostly a glow flier since '67, but have to admit have had a lot of fun with an electric motor glider this last summer. But I love getting all castored up and having a good time with my glow models. But maybe I'm nuts, I even like rubber powered free flight models.
Old 12-12-2009, 11:10 PM
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MJD
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Just yesterday I was shaking my head at the latest MAN off the rack, realizing once again that I had paid several bucks for a warmed-over ARF catalog. I read one in a few minutes, there is so much chaff to sift through you can get a sore wrist flipping pages to find anything worth passing attention. Yet, it was not that many years ago I think I would have said it was still a decent read. Maybe it was actually twenty years though. I looked at the subscription cards the other day wondering if I should drop the hint at my wife, but I decided not to bother. Seriously.

MJD

Old 12-13-2009, 03:56 AM
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cutaway
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

MAN and Model Aviation to a lesser degree, have very poor signal/noise ratios.
Old 12-13-2009, 08:35 AM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

This is just one opinion but...

Way back when, modelers built their own airplanes, experimented with RC, and also flew CL and FF. and MAN covered it. Modeling has changed into a group that is mostly flyers who buy already built stuff...so what is there to write about? When MAN dropped FF and CL, many of us dropped MAN (me included). It became, as you say, mostly an ARF catalog with ARF reviews, with less stuff for the rest.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not against progress. I like, as much as the next guy, to be able to get a radio that is mostly trouble-free. I'm not an ARF guy, but I see the need ...especially for those of limited time or skill, to see a review by someone who has already tried that particular model. How many of those can you read and enjoy?

Perhaps part of the problem is that those who design and build have lost interest in THAT kind of magazine. I mean, those folks have already developed the necessary skills, and can try new things by themselves...without reading about how to use them in a mag.

From the mag's point of view...why publish things that the majority of readers are not interested in?

Perhaps the onus is on US, the modelers, to let the magazines know what we are interested in, and what we are NOT interested in. The magazines folks should not have to guess.

(Step down off soap box. )

George
Old 12-13-2009, 08:45 AM
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Tim Wiltse-RCU
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

It's a throw away world these days. With the current cost of ARF's it is just silly to go out and build a model from a kit. By the time you add up the cost of the kit, glue, covering, tools etc you can buy 3 ARF's. Guys go out smash it on it's second flight, stuff it into a trash because they have no connection with the plane...no blood..sweet or tears into building it. As for the model mags I agree it's just an ARF catalog. As for the leckie's taking over the world well it kind of goes hand and hand with the whole ARF deal. When was the last time you saw a 13 year old kid at the nitro engine counter at the hobby shop? When was the last time you saw a kid looking over the jugs of nitro fuel for his Cox engine, his OS engine heck any engine? I bet money the last time you saw that was when we were that age. Now when was the last time you saw a 13 year old kid with a cell phone stuck to his ear or an iPod or walking around with his PSP in his hands while the rest of the world revoles around them? I bet you see that at least once a day. Kids, even alot of adults just want the easy way out these days. With nitro you have oily, loud, hard to start if you don't know how, you need a glow lighter, starter, starter battery etc. With a lecky you need a charger. So in todays world easy= lecky!!! You know the saying "back in the day"? Well back in the days of maybe the late 50's and through the 60's names like Cox, WenMac, OK Cub were all household names. Every kid on the block could start a Cox Thermal Hopper or Babe Bee with his eyes closed. Sadly those days are long long gone.

LAter,
Tim
Old 12-13-2009, 09:20 AM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?


ORIGINAL: Tom Nied

Seems to be just the proliferation of the model aircraft industry. There's a whole bunch of guys who will never run a glow motor, too hard to master. Electric just turn it on and fly. I've been mostly a glow flier since '67, but have to admit have had a lot of fun with an electric motor glider this last summer. But I love getting all castored up and having a good time with my glow models. But maybe I'm nuts, I even like rubber powered free flight models.

Funny as it sounds in one article the "true" soarer guys...even had some bad remarks towards the electric gliders, made it too easy to do without having too use an up start for launching...why would you want all that extra weight up front on a glider and with thal floppy prop dragging it even more?...was the comment.....
and I really wasnt going for nostalgia..I mean this was last years stuff!!...Rog
Old 12-13-2009, 09:33 AM
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Jim Thomerson
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Well, the MAN we knew and loved vanished about 20 years ago, but Flying Models is still pretty good, and still manages to cover the waterfront. I intend to keep my subscription going.
Old 12-13-2009, 09:59 AM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

I'm with Jim T., Flying Models. Thin, but the actual editorial content is much higher.
Dave
Old 12-13-2009, 10:10 AM
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DeviousDave
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

FM is the only magazine I buy (an keep) every month, without fail. If there's something in MA that piques my interes, I'll pick it up, but I have no interest in the glossy rags at all.
Old 12-13-2009, 01:34 PM
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Raymond LeFlyr
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Add me to the list of Flying Models subscriber/fans. My January Twenty-Ten (where did the years go?) issue arrived yesterday. Here's just some of the stuff that caught my eye (I spy with my little eye . . .)
Stevens Aero 50 watt CL RingRat kit
Excellent article about propellors
"Regulars" include the best . . .
Small Talk column
Oldtimer Topics column (somehow I relate to this stuff)
A "real" Free Flight column
Cross Files column
Plus other eye-catchers that, as the auctioneer says, are too numerous to mention

All that and a reminder for me to order the plans for the Little Live Wire (CF0780) $8 plus $5 for shipping (still among the cheaper plans sources) that somehow I neglected to order when the article was first published.

The strength for FM being that there is more useful "editorial content" (read that as "words") in Flying models than that one we have to buy for the insurance (don't get me started) and all of the others who are shills for the enormous ARF market.

Does anyone else find it curious that when someone shows up at the field with a $1000 ARF that the "builder" says was hard to "assemble" - AND took almost a week to finish - everybody nods in sympathy but praises the "buyer" for how well it turned out?

Does anyone else find it curious that when a "kindly older person" shows up with a model built in a matter of months (rather than days) from plans or even a true kit (if you can find one), nobody asks questions about construction, finishing, trimming - nada (ask me how I know).

Wow, do I feel old!
Old 12-13-2009, 01:54 PM
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MJD
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Raymond, I never fail to not be impressed by people's ARF's. Especially when they start telling me how much they spent on this and that. "Great" I say, "hope you enjoy it" and try hard to stifle a yawn.

Not to say every "ARF" aircraft is boring, that is FAR from true. There are a bunch of great aircraft - that's not the point. Coming from a youth/life of building kits, scratch building from plans and own designs, all that.. it's hard to get excited by TV dinners. Therefore people who show off their purchased and assembled toys and act as if they have accomplished something worthy of praise from their peers bore me to tears. Fly the crap out of it until the wing joiners start to creak, now that might be interesting.

People who show up at the field with something scratchbuilt or even from a kit built have a lot to be proud of IMHO. But I've sure owned and flown (and currently own and fly) my share of ARF's and man they have a place in this world! Nothing better for flying flying flying..

There are folks from all "settings" along this scratch - kit - ARF scale, and no universal attitude or opinion covers it all or is perhaps even valid. The massive influx of cool electronics and what else is all supported by the huge out of the box market.

It "is what it is" these days, and one just has to do what floats his/her boat I guess. And there are all kinds of resources to do so, so that's good.

MJD
Old 12-13-2009, 08:42 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Well early on I was an opponent of the AMA mag..pretty much the argument was,,take the $19 off my membership and keep your mag so its $40 for membership....then someone sent me a trial of Flying models (Raymond was that you?) and it was bathroom reading only, along with the AMA mag...then I got Backyard Flyer, its main attribute was a hottie on the cover holding the latest must have parkflyer of the week...then the AMA saw it was loosing membership to leckys you actually could fly at the schoolyard and offered its $20 membership just to hang on to them...after one year of Backyard Flyer arf fluff it went in the trash after 10 minutes of reading..and then one day the AMA mag had some small stuff and then some micro stuff and it got a lot more reading time...now I like it the most..in fact I dont remember resubscribing to MA but it keeps coming...but back to ARFs I know a LOT of us have and talk about the Herr litttle extra I have one built and ready and flown and another in the box..sig rascal that is as boring as a plane can be but I bought it to train a friend with...many planes hanging from the rafters,,and it has been said many times the lecky arf's are great to turn to 1/2 stuff with a little beefing up and fuel proofing...I think ARF catalog is the best description of the mags I've heard yet...Rog
Old 12-13-2009, 10:25 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

I've been building and flying models snce about 1948. I have a few Elecs, Helis, glow, RC, CL, FF, model rockets, etc. I still prefer building to assembling ARFs, but will fly whatever I can get my hands on. Have even spent idle minutes at work rolling a cylinder at work to come up with an indoor flying UFO. Kept a couple indoor electric and FF rubber planes in my locker for after hours.

I currently recieve FM, MA, and MAN. I also buy a cuple English publications at Boarders and Barnes and Nobles.

I currently have a two year subscription to MAN, but may not renew in 2012. I think I only renewed this tiome because of Clarence Lee. I have been dissapointed to find out they seem to have had a housecleaning and gotten rid of most of their older plans. I am just glad I was able to order a few last year that I have wanted for a long time, such as the CL XB-47D. But, the plan prices hae become higher than I used to spend for whole kits.

But, a person, organization, or even a hobby/sport has to grow with the times, or disappear.

I remember when the FFers were predicting the CLers were going to wreck the hobby/sport, then both started complaining about die cut weakening the skills needed to cut out your parts from printwood, then both getting together to complain about RC, then the builders complaining about the new-fangled ARFs and RTFs, and now that and the arguements about electric vrs iIC. The only constant is people complining about the new-fangled gadgets.

What the hey, I'm still having fun with it all.
Old 12-13-2009, 11:20 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Looking through the magazines used to be an adventure. It's now shifted over to the internet, I've gotten more info in less time on the internet than any amount of magazine reading.
Stunt News is still a great magazine, it's all about modeling.
Old 12-13-2009, 11:22 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

I gave up buying model mags something like 5 years ago when the last of the regular construction articles finally bit the dust. These days I check them over when I'm by the rack and will buy one or two when there's something worth the cover price. But all too rarely they are just ARF catalogs or are offering re-baked "high tech" articles that are warmed over newby material from yesteryear.

A huge part of the love of this hobby for me was the technical aspect. I enjoy the aerodynamics and the designing and building. The flying is ALMOST secondary other than in the case of thermal soaring which is constantly challenging.

So for me the current magazines just do not have much to offer since about the turn of the millenium.
Old 12-13-2009, 11:24 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Well Raymond, I too enjoy Flying Models Mag. My subcription to MAN is up next month and it will not be renewed. Kind of sad to see what has come of the hobby. Yep ARFs have their place as well as electrics. Still, building my own models is my preference.

Funny, I've been racing some of my own designed Quickie 500s the last 2 years and have had guys come up and want to know who made my ARF. When I tell them I built it they seem kind of ticked off. One guy even stated that its not fair to run the self built models with the ARFs. The self builts are faster and tougher and to be fair everyone should be flying the ARFs. I asked him why not build and he said he could not!![sm=spinnyeyes.gif] Never had that one thrown at me!!

Bob Harris
Old 12-14-2009, 12:29 AM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

They don't support the hobby in which I'm interested, so I wont support them. Flying ARFs is not aeromodelling.
Old 12-14-2009, 09:14 AM
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ORIGINAL: BobHH

Well Raymond, I too enjoy Flying Models Mag. My subcription to MAN is up next month and it will not be renewed. Kind of sad to see what has come of the hobby. Yep ARFs have their place as well as electrics. Still, building my own models is my preference.

Funny, I've been racing some of my own designed Quickie 500s the last 2 years and have had guys come up and want to know who made my ARF. When I tell them I built it they seem kind of ticked off. One guy even stated that its not fair to run the self built models with the ARFs. The self builts are faster and tougher and to be fair everyone should be flying the ARFs. I asked him why not build and he said he could not!![sm=spinnyeyes.gif] Never had that one thrown at me!!

Bob Harris
Now thats funny!!!....Bipe Flyer, cmon, some arfs have their place,,some guys enjoy building, some dont, I have built many planes from scratch, remember the LS150? that was the easiest and most fun plane to learn on....I couldnt scratch out an extra like the Herr arf on my best day...I am not detail oriented at all...you and Bob do very nice work as many others here do...sometimes time does get in the way...Bob, see you at the swap meet,,might have a table of my own....if I can swing it time wise...Rog
Old 12-14-2009, 10:32 AM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

ORIGINAL: BobHH

<snip>.......When I tell them I built it they seem kind of ticked off. One guy even stated that its not fair to run the self built models with the ARFs. The self builts are faster and tougher and to be fair everyone should be flying the ARFs. I asked him why not build and he said he could not!![sm=spinnyeyes.gif] Never had that one thrown at me!!

Bob Harris
Times, they are a'changin'. Many of us around here are a bit long in the tooth (well, maybe not as old as Raymond ). My high school offered shop classes, architectural and mechanical drawing - seldom found today in most schools. Many of the younger folks have never used hand tools to any extent, can't read drawings and have little interest in doing so. The ARF is the way to go for them - quick, easy and with little effort. I do find it interesting that assembling an ARF in some groups falls under the title: Build Thread .

I also miss the day when the mags had 2 or 3 construction articles with plans and a DIY electronic project.

I completly agree with CP that the internet has become a primary source of information and that I can read the forums that interest me. There are still a lot of competent builders out there - they're just not in the mags much.

andrew


Old 12-14-2009, 02:08 PM
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ORIGINAL: flyinrog

Bipe Flyer, cmon, some arfs have their place,,some guys enjoy building, some dont, I have built many planes from scratch, remember the LS150? that was the easiest and most fun plane to learn on....I couldnt scratch out an extra like the Herr arf on my best day...I am not detail oriented at all...you and Bob do very nice work as many others here do...sometimes time does get in the way...
Sure ARFs have their place, but I still contend assembling an ARF is not really modelling an airplane. It's like the difference between someone who rebuilds cars and someone who collects cars. They may both have a nice car at the end of the day, but they're not really involved in the same hobby.

So, I guess what I'm trying to say is that since MAN decided that they only wanted to have a magazine for one segment of the hobby and since I'm not in that segment I have no interest in their mag.
Old 12-14-2009, 02:15 PM
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ORIGINAL: BobHH

Funny, I've been racing some of my own designed Quickie 500s the last 2 years and have had guys come up and want to know who made my ARF. When I tell them I built it they seem kind of ticked off. One guy even stated that its not fair to run the self built models with the ARFs. The self builts are faster and tougher and to be fair everyone should be flying the ARFs. I asked him why not build and he said he could not!![sm=spinnyeyes.gif] Never had that one thrown at me!!

Bob Harris
Bob, you cheater!

I have a similar story. A guy bought one of my short kits for a Pitts Bulldog. He did a beautiful job of it and had it on display at their "Concours d'Elegance" where the planes are on static display and judged on looks. He lost to an ARF - man, he was not too happy.
Old 12-14-2009, 04:03 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

I actually find ARFs MORE time consuming to build than kits. I end up changing half the components out because they are too weak, too sticky (linkages), too this or too that. I grew up building kits and enjoy them and, like others have said, feel a connection to the model. ARFs just don't do it for me. That said, if someone likes assembling ARFs and gets out to enjoy the hobby, I have no problem with that.

Tim
Old 12-14-2009, 05:27 PM
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Default RE: Are we really this bad?

Being somone who got a start cutting parts out of printwood, (And even cereal boxes, like from Wheaties) I definitely prefer to build. Over the last 20 or so years, I've developed the impression that people who come out to the field with something they bought as an ARF/RTF package deal often loose interest in a very short period of time. Never developed that Stick-to-it-iveness.

Right now, someone whom I remember when he was coming out to the field with his father, proud of the planes he himself built with dad's help, is now enthusiastic about some of today's ARFs. Can't get in the air for the price and time investment by building. Hasn't stopped him from still building, or teaching his own sons to build, but is building up his proportion of ARFs to home built.

I do kind of like some of the small electrics, especially because they let me fit in a quick flight or three at the small park across the street from my house. And when I was still employed, it was a kick in bad weather to walk over to the loading dock or engineering garage after work with a small indoor electric RC plane or helicopter. But, it was at least as much a kick to set up a stooge on my desk or workbench, and put a few hundred turns into a Parlor Mite or EZ-B and walk to those same areas.

Except for a few Cox Plastic RTFs, I have never had an ARF or RTF last as long as many of the planes I've built myself, except for a Kyosho Cessna Cardinal. That one survived about 10 years. Just about all the rest gave up the ghost within a year or two, ususally because of inadequate glue joints and structural weaknesess, especially landing gear mounts and firewalls. One even had mismatched airfoils on the two wing panels.

But then, times and peoples' attitudes are changing. Back in 1962, when I got accepted for the local community college, you had to show you were ready for college work, with written tests and face to face interviews. We had no drop-outs in my class, except for a student who had to move out-of-state. The course was 138 credit hours and completed in two years. No ifs, ands, or buts. When I went back in 1980 for some refresher courses, some full-time students were only taking the minimum 12 credit hours per quarter, and needing sometimes 3 or 4 years to finish business and liberal arts curiculla, and as much as 6 for the engineering and chemisty degrees. And over half the kids coming out of high school needed one or more remedial courses before they were ready for actual college level work, and at that, the drop-out rate had grown to almost 30%.

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