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5 Short Words

Old 04-23-2021, 02:08 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
For me, it still boils down to a transactional decision. At $75/year it's still only about 1/3 what I spend on Netflix and I get more enjoyment out of flying than I do out of Netflix. So, by that simple math, I find it a good value.

As I stated before, that does NOT mean that I agree with how the AMA is running itself, but it does mean that I will continue to pay my dues. If the dues go up, then I will make a new decision. If the dues went up tp say $750/year, then my decision would be easy and I would not renew. But if the dues went up 5% - 10%, I probably would still renew. Above that, I just don't know yet.
That's been my point to and about AMA all along. The ED/President runs the place (and EC rubber stamps it) from the mindset that everyone eats, lives, and breathes model airplanes like they do. My position is they are blind to the fact that most people do not. Just as you described, it's a rational economic decision for most. And the numbers prove that. Revenue is declining and dues increases only drive people away faster. After the 2002 dues increase, it took 4 years for the revenue to fall below what it was before the increase. After the 2016 increase, it took half that (see chart).

The AMA is in a bad spot of their own making. The ED/President absolutely refuse to cut staff. Even staff supporting magazines that lose hundreds of thousands a year. They've sold investments the last few years to make up the difference between spending in revenue, but now that pot is running dry. And if you believe some of the economists, this is happening as we may be heading into a period of high inflation. If that's the case, the trends you see will only accelerate.


Old 04-23-2021, 04:58 AM
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Originally Posted by franklin_m View Post
That's been my point to and about AMA all along. The ED/President runs the place (and EC rubber stamps it) from the mindset that everyone eats, lives, and breathes model airplanes like they do. My position is they are blind to the fact that most people do not. Just as you described, it's a rational economic decision for most. And the numbers prove that. Revenue is declining and dues increases only drive people away faster. After the 2002 dues increase, it took 4 years for the revenue to fall below what it was before the increase. After the 2016 increase, it took half that (see chart).

The AMA is in a bad spot of their own making. The ED/President absolutely refuse to cut staff. Even staff supporting magazines that lose hundreds of thousands a year. They've sold investments the last few years to make up the difference between spending in revenue, but now that pot is running dry. And if you believe some of the economists, this is happening as we may be heading into a period of high inflation. If that's the case, the trends you see will only accelerate.


I am in total agreement that higher dues will accelerate membership declines. That is basic market economics. But please excuse me for being flippant when I say "so what?". The larger macro trend of membership decline is being driven by the age demographics of the core members. The core membership of the AMA is a bunch of us old Baby Boomers, and I feel confident in a prediction that AMA membership declines will continue to accelerate over the next 20 years or so no matter what the AMA dues might happen to be. Per my earlier post, this trend is totally consistent with nearly all hobby/leisure segments that have historically been fueled by the Baby Boomer generation and it's access to disposable income.

Also, I fully believe that the AMA is incapable of transforming itself into whatever form the RC aircraft hobby will evolve into (and even if it was able to change it's stripes, it would likely alienate it's existing core membership and hasten its own demise), so it's relevance will simply continue to diminish, not matter what else happens. In the meantime, it still provides a gateway for us dinosaurs that fly traditional model aircraft and want to have nice place to fly them, and the AMA will age out of usefulness as us Baby Boomers age out of the population. We can (and should) insist that the AMA use our dues as responsibly as possible, but the end game will be the same no matter what. The AMA will either fold up completely or (at best) become some tiny shadow of what it is today.

So most of will continue to burry our heads in the sand and ignore the incompetency that is going in in Muncie because we are satisfied with what we are getting today (and we won't be around tomorrow). In the end none of this will really matter.
Old 04-23-2021, 05:14 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by franklin_m View Post
You see value at $75 a year (or whatever you're paying).

You say financials are independent of that decision? I see them as intertwined. ... Will you continue to see value? Unknown. But you see why financials are inexorably linked to the "do I see value" economic decision.
Fair and accurate points. You and I agree on the big picture of the AMA financials, although we disagree on some nuances. I believe the AMA needs to cut expenses by 6%, and I suggest salaries of the leadership be tied to neutral budgets.

However, this topic is about value, not long-term feasibility. You and I will have to agree to disagree. I see value in the present - capitalism teaches me to get the most goods at the lowest cost. The long run danger does not affect today's value. Just because company X is going out of business, I will not stop buying their products - and gaining value - because they are priced too low.
Old 04-23-2021, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
..................................
So most of will continue to burry our heads in the sand and ignore the incompetency that is going in in Muncie because we are satisfied with what we are getting today (and we won't be around tomorrow). In the end none of this will really matter.
That's the part that saddens me the most. That's not the America nor the Americans I grew up with.
Old 04-23-2021, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
That's the part that saddens me the most. That's not the America nor the Americans I grew up with.
I actually think its just human nature (not an American thing). Each new generation likes to pretend that it reinvented the world in its youth and then resists any new changes in its senior years.
Old 04-23-2021, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
That's the part that saddens me the most. That's not the America nor the Americans I grew up with.
I'll agree 100% with this. Getting people motivated is a lost art it would seem.
Old 04-23-2021, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by init4fun View Post
I'll agree 100% with this. Getting people motivated is a lost art it would seem.
I don't know if it's a matter of motivation (I'm sure that's the case for some), or some just deciding that, at this moment in time, that's not a hill I feel like dying on (like myself).

At the present time, I know that I have way more pressing matters than the (lack of) financial stability of the AMA.

R_Strowe
Old 04-23-2021, 02:41 PM
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Gentlemen, before I say anything else, I want to thank you all for keeping this thread attack and animosity free. It's a VERY nice change from the normal threads.
Okay, now that I've said that, on to my post.
As I see it, the problem is not with the system, it's with the management AND MEMBERS. How can that be the case, both management AND members?
Let me explain this for you:
  1. The EC and ED keep the members in the dark as to what they are doing. Not to call him out specifically but Barracuda Hockey has not volunteered any information about anything the EC has voted on since he was voted into the EC. Is that a choice or is he under what can only be called a "gag order"? Either way, I've always thought it was the job of the AVPs to be a conduit of information both to the EC and from the EC. That's the way it works in every other organization I've been a member of. Yet the EC doesn't pass information about the meetings to the members until it's sent out as vague minutes months later. At the same time, when someone says something to the AVP, we don't know if it's been taken to a meeting or not since it's never shown up in the minutes as issues/suggestions from the members
  2. The members don't think they need to be involved in what the AMA EC and ED do. Mr Strowe's last post kind of illustrates this. While the EC and ED are bleeding the AMA treasury to death with wasteful spending, what are the members doing about it? Usually nothing, other than flying like they always have. And why is this? That's what the EC has told the members so it's not questioned by the members. Those that understand what's happening to the AMA, financially, understand there is a problem but won't call out the EC or ED because they think their one voice won't be heard. Unfortunately, they are probably right. The other part of the equation is that, when one person, I'll use Franklin because he's in this thread, tries to point out a problem, he gets ignored at best, attacked and ridiculed at worst. Anything the AMA loyalist can do to discredit him is tried. Franklin is a bit more determined than the average member so he keeps trying to put out the information. The average member would have quit after the first "push back" reaction from said loyalists, giving the EC and ED a "pass" on everything they do(or rubber stamp), rather than take the continuous punishment those that defend the AMA and powers that be will continue to dish out.
Old 04-24-2021, 07:34 AM
  #34  
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Hydro, I think your analysis is reasonably accurate, but there is another dimension to this that is missing. Ultimately, this is a hobby, its about having fun. If it becomes too much like work, then you start to lose interest fast. For example, last year, when researching the NPRM and drafting my 14 page response, I really started to question if this was worth it all. I stuck with it, but came to the conclusion that if fighting government bureaucracy was going to be significant element of this hobby long term, that I would probably just move on to something else.

That's at the core of many of my comments and I suspect is at the core of R Strowe's post about this not being the "hill we want to die on". Honestly, I don't want to work that hard at dealing with the politics and bureaucracy of Muncie in order to enjoy my hobby and have fun. I have plenty of other interests that do not require that kind of fight. So, like I said, I will pay my dues and fly my planes as long as I can. But if the only way for me to enjoy RC airplanes is to get deeply involved in driving changes to the political landscape of the AMA organization, well, I will just move onto other interests. Simply put, I want my hobby to be about having fun and trying to force change in Muncie is simply no fun.
Old 04-24-2021, 08:10 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
Hydro, I think your analysis is reasonably accurate, but there is another dimension to this that is missing. Ultimately, this is a hobby, its about having fun. If it becomes too much like work, then you start to lose interest fast. For example, last year, when researching the NPRM and drafting my 14 page response, I really started to question if this was worth it all. I stuck with it, but came to the conclusion that if fighting government bureaucracy was going to be significant element of this hobby long term, that I would probably just move on to something else.

That's at the core of many of my comments and I suspect is at the core of R Strowe's post about this not being the "hill we want to die on". Honestly, I don't want to work that hard at dealing with the politics and bureaucracy of Muncie in order to enjoy my hobby and have fun. I have plenty of other interests that do not require that kind of fight. So, like I said, I will pay my dues and fly my planes as long as I can. But if the only way for me to enjoy RC airplanes is to get deeply involved in driving changes to the political landscape of the AMA organization, well, I will just move onto other interests. Simply put, I want my hobby to be about having fun and trying to force change in Muncie is simply no fun.
Would you be as reluctant if the problem were within your local RC club? Or Lodge? Or Church?
Thing is I suspect most people look at something like this and the real thought is "If no one else is going to, why should I?" You get down to it and people are pretty lazy.
One person taking on the task of changing things is indeed in for a lot of work (kudos to Frank). Even if you have a small group of a dozen or two the work piles up. But what people fail to see is if a significant percentage of the organization were involved, the work load is drastically reduced for the individual. The trick is overcoming the group think in my second line up there. And that really should be the first task.

A perfect world one would never have to resort to such tactics. Questions asked would be answered clearly and completely. But it requires leadership with some pretty high personal standards. Leaders that watch each other and themselves with more zeal than the members do. But we don't find that in the AMA. Instead we find secrecy, obfuscation, lack of details, lack of timeliness, poor communication and the list goes on. The EC essentially says "No Discussion!" and like sheep, the membership accepts it. Sad thing is I suspect most the membership has the same attitude towards most things in their lives.
Old 04-24-2021, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
Let the senseless drivel commence!
Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
Sad thing is I suspect most the membership has the same [sheepish] attitude towards most things in their lives.
Why the insults? This has been a great dialogue and discussion on real matters. You started with a wonderful question, but it seems you only like one answer :-)
Old 04-24-2021, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
Would you be as reluctant if the problem were within your local RC club? Or Lodge? Or Church?
Thing is I suspect most people look at something like this and the real thought is "If no one else is going to, why should I?" You get down to it and people are pretty lazy ...
Flying RC airplanes is not my religion. It's not my family. It's not my profession. It's not saving lives. It's not curing cancer. It's not freeing an enslaved population from tyranny. In short it is not the reason I get out of bed in the morning. Flying RC airplanes IS a hobby that I do for fun. It IS something I do to get away from politics and bureaucracy and all of the nonsense I deal with on a daily basis at work. When it stops being fun, I will walk away from the hobby with no regrets.

My choice not to engage in a battle to reform the AMA is not apathy or laziness, it IS a pragmatic choice about how I prioritize my time and energy. In other words, I just don't care enough about this issue to take up this particular fight. That is a deliberate choice, not a failing. Clearly there are some here who have a different priority and have made a different choice, and I applaud and (within reason) support their efforts.
Old 04-25-2021, 02:13 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
Flying RC airplanes is not my religion. It's not my family. It's not my profession. It's not saving lives. It's not curing cancer. It's not freeing an enslaved population from tyranny. In short it is not the reason I get out of bed in the morning. Flying RC airplanes IS a hobby that I do for fun. It IS something I do to get away from politics and bureaucracy and all of the nonsense I deal with on a daily basis at work. When it stops being fun, I will walk away from the hobby with no regrets.

My choice not to engage in a battle to reform the AMA is not apathy or laziness, it IS a pragmatic choice about how I prioritize my time and energy. In other words, I just don't care enough about this issue to take up this particular fight. That is a deliberate choice, not a failing. Clearly there are some here who have a different priority and have made a different choice, and I applaud and (within reason) support their efforts.
And yet, you'll sit here and discuss it. Sometimes at length and sometimes even defending those who, like yourself won't do anything. Might I suggest that you are already half way out the door of this hobby.
Old 04-25-2021, 02:35 AM
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Originally Posted by PopeyeCharlotte View Post
Why the insults? This has been a great dialogue and discussion on real matters. You started with a wonderful question, but it seems you only like one answer :-)
Well, to start with the first quote, "Let the senseless drivel commence!", is the closing from my original post in this thread. And as the OP of this thread I was expressing my expectations as to the direction this thread would eventually go. Based on what typically happens in threads in this section, what would you expect? I'll admit I have been pleasantly surprised. But I have also noticed the absence of a few main characters. Hmmmm!

The second quote, "Sad thing is I suspect most the membership has the same [sheepish] attitude towards most things in their lives.", is nothing more than my opinion based on my observations here and elsewhere. I would say the same about the American Public in general. Especially in matters of the Constitution.

If you feel insulted by these perhaps you should consider whether or not it's really from a feeling of guilt?
Old 04-25-2021, 03:14 AM
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Retiredat38, I sent you a pm
Old 04-25-2021, 03:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
Well, to start with the first quote, "Let the senseless drivel commence!", is the closing from my original post in this thread. And as the OP of this thread I was expressing my expectations as to the direction this thread would eventually go. Based on what typically happens in threads in this section, what would you expect? I'll admit I have been pleasantly surprised. But I have also noticed the absence of a few main characters. Hmmmm!

The second quote, "Sad thing is I suspect most the membership has the same [sheepish] attitude towards most things in their lives.", is nothing more than my opinion based on my observations here and elsewhere. I would say the same about the American Public in general. Especially in matters of the Constitution.

If you feel insulted by these perhaps you should consider whether or not it's really from a feeling of guilt?
Retired, it's sad to say but we're not living with the same life ethic as generations past. In today's "Everyone gets a trophy just for participating" culture no one is expected to actually WORK for something, it's supposed to be provided to the self entitled masses "just because" . Even things like simple manners have fallen by the wayside, I recently admonished a guy here at RCU I that helped find a part he posted a rant thread about not being able to find for not having the common courtesy to say a simple "thank you" for the help, and my post was promptly deleted as being "snarky" . The mod who deleted my post actually did me a pretty big favor, he opened my eyes to the fact that helping the self entitled who don't appreciate it is the ultimate waste of time, time which I WILL spend better elsewhere in the future. I'm old, I haven't all that many years left, and I know I'm not mistaken in what I see as the apathetic decline of people's core humanity when dealing with other people, To twist Kennedy's words a bit, now it's "what will my fellow humans do for ME vs what will I do for my fellow humans" .

I haven't posted much here lately because I haven't had much to say. But I will say that your thread here hit the point perfectly, Thank You for posting it......
Old 04-25-2021, 05:04 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by init4fun View Post
Retired, it's sad to say but we're not living with the same life ethic as generations past. In today's "Everyone gets a trophy just for participating" culture no one is expected to actually WORK for something, it's supposed to be provided to the self entitled masses "just because" . Even things like simple manners have fallen by the wayside, I recently admonished a guy here at RCU I that helped find a part he posted a rant thread about not being able to find for not having the common courtesy to say a simple "thank you" for the help, and my post was promptly deleted as being "snarky" . The mod who deleted my post actually did me a pretty big favor, he opened my eyes to the fact that helping the self entitled who don't appreciate it is the ultimate waste of time, time which I WILL spend better elsewhere in the future. I'm old, I haven't all that many years left, and I know I'm not mistaken in what I see as the apathetic decline of people's core humanity when dealing with other people, To twist Kennedy's words a bit, now it's "what will my fellow humans do for ME vs what will I do for my fellow humans" .

I haven't posted much here lately because I haven't had much to say. But I will say that your thread here hit the point perfectly, Thank You for posting it......
Agreed! I have to wonder if the earlier poster is aware that he contributed to the insult environment he was complaining about? No matter! Makes much more sense to just let things like that go but some people simply can't help but to object. If for nothing else than to ensure they get their participation trophy, warm fuzzy, atta-boy, etc.. Same goes for those who suddenly jump on a miss-spelling or form of a word. Then we have those who mis-quote and quote out of context. All intended to change the meaning of the OP by clearly demonstrating what's important to them. And it's not the discussion at hand but rather.........their Egos! And sadly (again), this IS the AMA, the Hobby and these forums.

To quote a character from a favorite author of mine: "I have little hope were man more intelligent it would be an improvement. It would merely allow us to make a higher class of mistake."
Old 04-25-2021, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by init4fun View Post
Retired, it's sad to say but we're not living with the same life ethic as generations past. In today's "Everyone gets a trophy just for participating" culture no one is expected to actually WORK for something, it's supposed to be provided to the self entitled masses "just because" . Even things like simple manners have fallen by the wayside, I recently admonished a guy here at RCU I that helped find a part he posted a rant thread about not being able to find for not having the common courtesy to say a simple "thank you" for the help, and my post was promptly deleted as being "snarky" . The mod who deleted my post actually did me a pretty big favor, he opened my eyes to the fact that helping the self entitled who don't appreciate it is the ultimate waste of time, time which I WILL spend better elsewhere in the future. I'm old, I haven't all that many years left, and I know I'm not mistaken in what I see as the apathetic decline of people's core humanity when dealing with other people, To twist Kennedy's words a bit, now it's "what will my fellow humans do for ME vs what will I do for my fellow humans" .

I haven't posted much here lately because I haven't had much to say. But I will say that your thread here hit the point perfectly, Thank You for posting it......
I'd be jamming the like button if there were one.

I always appreciate init's comments here, they always have a way of resonating with me.

I've come to some of the same conclusions lately, and have been ignoring the insanity around me instead of engaging in it. I've been accused of stirring the pot a few times, it is funny, usually when I stir the pot it is because I see the apathy or ignorance and I want to help, but it usually ends with folks feeling insulted and attacking me, instead of acknowledging their role in the big picture.

As I age and my days are numbered, I realize that it is better for me to be selfish with my time and spend it how I wish, being positive and enjoying my life, not engaged with indignant idiots who do not know how, or want to, engage in any kind of beneficial dialogue.

Regards,

Astro


Old 04-25-2021, 06:03 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Retiredat38 View Post
And yet, you'll sit here and discuss it. Sometimes at length and sometimes even defending those who, like yourself won't do anything. Might I suggest that you are already half way out the door of this hobby.
I think you missed my point. I can and do enjoy the hobby without getting into the AMA battle and I will do so for as long as I am able. With regard to my time spent here, my physical activity level is somewhat restricted right now, so I am spending more time on forums like this. I do enjoy the discussion and the debate for the most part, and as I have posted before, I have learned a few things along the way too.

I do not enjoy it when the comments get snarky and personal and I hope you can tell from my posts, that I avoid making disparaging comments about others. I have nothing but respect for alternate viewpoints that do not align with my own. Like I said, when I keep an open mind, sometimes I learn something new.
Old 04-25-2021, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
I think you missed my point. I can and do enjoy the hobby without getting into the AMA battle and I will do so for as long as I am able. With regard to my time spent here, my physical activity level is somewhat restricted right now, so I am spending more time on forums like this. I do enjoy the discussion and the debate for the most part, and as I have posted before, I have learned a few things along the way too.

I do not enjoy it when the comments get snarky and personal and I hope you can tell from my posts, that I avoid making disparaging comments about others. I have nothing but respect for alternate viewpoints that do not align with my own. Like I said, when I keep an open mind, sometimes I learn something new.
I didn't miss your point and, after your previous post, you, in a way, put out how we should all be dealing with the approaching end of the AMA. it's very simple:
  • Find a place to fly that won't upset anyone
  • Put your planes in the air until you wear yourself, your fuel or battery supply out
  • Pack up and go home with a happy memory.
The problem is that life isn't that simple. Between the complainers, the bureaucrats, the FAA and AMA, it's getting harder and harder and harder to enjoy the hobby. Granted, building in the privacy of your own home won't ever change, other than the available engines, radio gear and materials to choose from. The problem starts when you're ready to fly your new plane. Where do you go to fly, what rules are now in place to have to deal with, who is going to complain vs help me if I need it? You won't know until you get to your flying site which, looking at the way things are going, could have been plowed up to be a parking lot or apartment complex, if you haven't been there for a while. To put it simply, life is turning into a "crap shoot". How many flights will you get before being told to leave by a police officer or an irate neighbor to your site? Will you be able to fly at your old site or has it been closed down due to neighbor complaints of too much noise or flying over their property? We are presently living in a "ME FIRST!!!!" society so what was is definitely not what is anymore.
Old 04-25-2021, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Hydro Junkie View Post
I didn't miss your point and, after your previous post, you, in a way, put out how we should all be dealing with the approaching end of the AMA. it's very simple:
  • Find a place to fly that won't upset anyone
  • Put your planes in the air until you wear yourself, your fuel or battery supply out
  • Pack up and go home with a happy memory.
The problem is that life isn't that simple. Between the complainers, the bureaucrats, the FAA and AMA, it's getting harder and harder and harder to enjoy the hobby. Granted, building in the privacy of your own home won't ever change, other than the available engines, radio gear and materials to choose from. The problem starts when you're ready to fly your new plane. Where do you go to fly, what rules are now in place to have to deal with, who is going to complain vs help me if I need it? You won't know until you get to your flying site which, looking at the way things are going, could have been plowed up to be a parking lot or apartment complex, if you haven't been there for a while. To put it simply, life is turning into a "crap shoot". How many flights will you get before being told to leave by a police officer or an irate neighbor to your site? Will you be able to fly at your old site or has it been closed down due to neighbor complaints of too much noise or flying over their property? We are presently living in a "ME FIRST!!!!" society so what was is definitely not what is anymore.
Unfortunately, I think your assessment is just about spot on. It is getting harder and harder to enjoy this hobby. That is why I take the "enjoy it while I can" attitude. I have a number of hobbies including restoring vintage hand tools, woodworking, and recently, model ship building. I can enjoy those hobbies without any hassles whatsoever.

For right now, I can also build and fly my planes without any real hassle either. Yes, we did lose the lease on the club field that was closest to me (because some endangered critters like building their nests there), but I am still a member at two others clubs and currently they also remain a hassle free experience.

The core of these discussions is always pro vs con AMA. I take a more moderate approach. The AMA continues to serve a purpose as a gateway to flying at clubs. And while I agree with many of the negative comments about not keeping current and financial mismanagement, I also firmly believe that the bigger issue is the shift in demographics. The AMA will lose relevance because nearly all of it's members, including myself, are aging out of the population, rendering the pro-con conversation moot. Not only will the AMA die out, but so will all the manufactures and suppliers of traditional model aircraft including kits, ARFs, motors, servos, landing gear, props, hardware etc. That decline is already taking place with remaining suppliers consolidating into a smaller and smaller core group and essentially all manufacturing done overseas. Truthfully, I believe that there is enough inertia to keep the industry, the AMA, and the club model going for the next decade or two. That is also pretty much all the life that traditional model airplane hobby is likely to have left too (no matter what happens to the AMA).
Old 04-26-2021, 03:47 AM
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
Unfortunately, I think your assessment is just about spot on. It is getting harder and harder to enjoy this hobby. That is why I take the "enjoy it while I can" attitude. I have a number of hobbies including restoring vintage hand tools, woodworking, and recently, model ship building. I can enjoy those hobbies without any hassles whatsoever.

For right now, I can also build and fly my planes without any real hassle either. Yes, we did lose the lease on the club field that was closest to me (because some endangered critters like building their nests there), but I am still a member at two others clubs and currently they also remain a hassle free experience.

The core of these discussions is always pro vs con AMA. I take a more moderate approach. The AMA continues to serve a purpose as a gateway to flying at clubs. And while I agree with many of the negative comments about not keeping current and financial mismanagement, I also firmly believe that the bigger issue is the shift in demographics. The AMA will lose relevance because nearly all of it's members, including myself, are aging out of the population, rendering the pro-con conversation moot. Not only will the AMA die out, but so will all the manufactures and suppliers of traditional model aircraft including kits, ARFs, motors, servos, landing gear, props, hardware etc. That decline is already taking place with remaining suppliers consolidating into a smaller and smaller core group and essentially all manufacturing done overseas. Truthfully, I believe that there is enough inertia to keep the industry, the AMA, and the club model going for the next decade or two. That is also pretty much all the life that traditional model airplane hobby is likely to have left too (no matter what happens to the AMA).
Interesting, I'm just getting interest in restoring old tools. I pulled a number of them from under my Grandfather's cabin. Unfortunately, the ground is really wet so a couple of them are pretty rusted, but a couple aren't too bad. May touch base on you with some photos and get your recommendations on approach to take.

On the AMA. I actually see a future for an AMA-like organization, but certainly not the AMA under it's current leadership / business strategy. I honestly think the FAA is looking for recreational sUAS organizations that will actually help them. What do I mean by that? On one hand, FAA has Congress, other agencies, other airspace users, etc. pulling them hard to do something to control what they perceive as a threat to safety of people in the air, on the ground, to security (DHS/DOD/LE), an to privacy (think overflights). On the other hand, you have AMA who is really good at writing rules, but does nothing to enforce them on their own members. FAA knows they don't have the manpower to do the former, but know they need to. They look at AMA and see vacuous windbags who are really all talk (and at that, a group always looking for ways to use FAA/law to compel membership).

I have come to believe that so long as Hanson & Budreau are in place, they simply cannot change. The EC is feckless when it comes to controlling the H&B cabal. And that's a problem because w/o a change, the AMA has no hope of surviving. You make a strong case that no matter what they do they won't survive, but if they don't get healthy financially, it's all but guaranteed.

I understand and respect your desire to enjoy it while it lasts. It wouldn't take a lot, a couple dozen or so folks hitting the EC with a consistent message of - you need to be more transparent, publish issues BEFORE votes, and slash spending - and we might see some change. But Hanson & Budreau count on a disengaged membership, and members are letting them do it. Add your voice and perhaps we can drive some change and make survival possible.
Old 04-26-2021, 06:20 AM
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Franklin,
I would love to see pics of your grandfather's tools and would be happy to offer any help I can (I will PM you my e-mail address).

I think you bring up a good point about the future state of the hobby and the role of the FAA and CBO's, I tend to agree that the FAA needs partners in this. But I also think that there is going to end up being a significant role for local law enforcement that also needs to be factored into any discussion about how safety and privacy issues related to sUAS are handled (recreational and commercial). That has been missing from most of the conversation so far. This will end up needing to operate more like motor vehicle law enforcement with federal guidelines and policies backed up by local ordnances and enforcement. That model has been anathema to the FAA in the past, but I do see signs of that changing. The FAA will just never be equipped to manage that at a local level given the potential scale of commercial and recreational UA. Several states are starting to draft trial legislation along these lines already.

The only way this works is if there is a balanced partnership of federal, local, and community organizations working cooperatively.
Old 04-26-2021, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
I would love to see pics of your grandfather's tools and would be happy to offer any help I can (I will PM you my e-mail address).
I'm on my lunch break now. After work I'll snap a couple photos and send to you for advice.

Originally Posted by aymodeler View Post
I think you bring up a good point about the future state of the hobby and the role of the FAA and CBO's, I tend to agree that the FAA needs partners in this. But I also think that there is going to end up being a significant role for local law enforcement that also needs to be factored into any discussion about how safety and privacy issues related to sUAS are handled (recreational and commercial). That has been missing from most of the conversation so far. This will end up needing to operate more like motor vehicle law enforcement with federal guidelines and policies backed up by local ordnances and enforcement. That model has been anathema to the FAA in the past, but I do see signs of that changing. The FAA will just never be equipped to manage that at a local level given the potential scale of commercial and recreational UA. Several states are starting to draft trial legislation along these lines already.

The only way this works is if there is a balanced partnership of federal, local, and community organizations working cooperatively.
Agree. LE can only enforce what's codified in law or regulation. At the state and local level they can lawfully limit the land from which they're operated. They can do things like zoning and such, which is actually pretty powerful. All it would take is for states and municipalities to say that FRIAs need to be in areas zoned for them, and then grant those permits are conditioned such that operations are confined to the lateral limits of the zoning permit. That would go a long way toward alleviating complaints from neighbors etc. As for public land, one could easily establish much the same. As for privately owned property, add ordinances that say sUAS operations must be confined to the limits of that property. They add new things like that all the time. For example, my local gvt added ordnance that actually gives them the authority to come onto my property to address sick trees. That's applicable not just to new properties, but existing ones as well.

Things like that keep everyone happy. They drive those flying to appropriate locations, yet give neighbors a tool to help keep a lid on those who don't respect others' land/privacy. That also gives local governments and LE something to enforce that doesn't step on FAA's authority.
Old 04-26-2021, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by franklin_m View Post
Agree. LE can only enforce what's codified in law or regulation. At the state and local level they can lawfully limit the land from which they're operated. They can do things like zoning and such, which is actually pretty powerful. All it would take is for states and municipalities to say that FRIAs need to be in areas zoned for them, and then grant those permits are conditioned such that operations are confined to the lateral limits of the zoning permit. That would go a long way toward alleviating complaints from neighbors etc. As for public land, one could easily establish much the same. As for privately owned property, add ordinances that say sUAS operations must be confined to the limits of that property. They add new things like that all the time. For example, my local gvt added ordnance that actually gives them the authority to come onto my property to address sick trees. That's applicable not just to new properties, but existing ones as well.

Things like that keep everyone happy. They drive those flying to appropriate locations, yet give neighbors a tool to help keep a lid on those who don't respect others' land/privacy. That also gives local governments and LE something to enforce that doesn't step on FAA's authority.
I agree completely! The community organizations really should have more of an education and outreach role, the feds should establish some uniform and consistent policies and guidelines, and the local governments should set local boundaries and take care of enforcement. It's a clear division of responsibilities that is mutually self supporting.

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