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Top Gun B-25 Down

Old 08-06-2005, 07:06 PM
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Lucky Dog
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Default Top Gun B-25 Down

Fellow R/C Enthusiasts,
It is was a heavy heart that I tell you that Greg Hahn's Top-Gun winning B-25 was destroyed today at the Scale Nats in Muncie. Culprit at this time is un-known (some type of radio problem), but Greg was heard to say that it just quit responding. []

Greg thrilled the crowd at our club's [link=http://www.jcrcf.net/Warbird-2005.html]Warbird Fly-In [/link] two weeks ago with the B-25, and I saw him fly it at the Mint Julep in May as well. Such a pilot and machine!

Oddly enough, a Jack Stafford B-24 was lost to similar circumstances just a few hours earlier in nearly the same location.

Otherwise, a lot of great looking scale planes and flying at the Nats today.

Old 08-06-2005, 08:12 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

A reminder that all we can really hope for is the enjoyment of building and seeing our creations in the air for a time or two. Anything after that's just gravy.

Again, I'm reminded of Tibet monks and their butter statues that melt as soon as they're finished and Navaho sand paintings that can take weeks of painstaking effort to create but that are destroyed by their creators the moment they are completed.
Old 08-07-2005, 07:50 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

A reminder that all we can really hope for is the enjoyment of building and seeing our creations in the air for a time or two. Anything after that's just gravy.
If that were true, most of us would quit RC and do something else. Losing an airplane is one of the facts of life that we have to live with. But I don't think anyone builds with the expectation of only seeing their model in the air a time or two.

I feel bad for Greg as he was just getting back into RC after taking a "break". Good luck in the future Greg!
Old 08-07-2005, 08:51 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Know the feeling I spent two years about $1800.00 to see my wing B-25 fly for about 55 seconds[:@]. But I did get it on video[]. She about half way rebuilt and I hope have a better flight next year.
Old 08-07-2005, 10:26 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

ORIGINAL: grbaker
Losing an airplane is one of the facts of life that we have to live with. But I don't think anyone builds with the expectation of only seeing their model in the air a time or two.
People who build the calibre of model that Greg did and intend to fly them at national level competitions may have different expectations than I do. I'm just happy to see one of my models leap off the workbench and make a circuit or two around the field. But then I'm not spending $1000+ on each model.

Greg took TopGun with his model and no crash can ever take that away.

Old 08-08-2005, 07:47 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

I always hate to see a nice model destroyed.

But, on the bright side, we are assured that we won't see the same aircraft at Top Gun next year.

I wonder what Mr. Hahn will build next?????
Old 08-08-2005, 09:38 AM
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Dai Phan
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Hello,

It is sad that a nice and expensive model crashed. I do too have my misfortune of crashing my TM after 200 plus hours of work last week. But these beautiful birds are meant to FLY and it is the chance we have to take. I am installing in all my planes flight-safe system now. DP
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Old 08-08-2005, 10:22 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Sorry about your misforture Dai Phan. What happened? And what's a "flight safe system?"
Old 08-08-2005, 11:22 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Hello,

On second flight, the plane went into uncontrolled right turn. A fail safe system is a system where upon receiving signal other than from your TX, like intereferences or someone turns on their radio on your channel, the system will put the plane in a position where you want the plane to go such as low throttle and gentle right turn. The plane will resume control by you once interefence is gone. For this system to work, you also need the "auto correction" feature so the plane will not fly into the ground in case the plane is inverted and got hit by interferences. FMA sells for 200 USD and I am now installing in all my scale planes now. DP
Old 08-08-2005, 07:43 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

LuckyDog,
I met Mr. Greg (Top Gun) Hahn in 2004, while Flight Judging the U.S. ScaleMasters at Gardner, KS. Greg is one of the nicest people I have ever met in this sport. He is a true gentleman. He will talk R/C with anyone who asks. He really does love this sport, (yes, I believe this is more of a sport than a hobby). I hope he can repair her. I have lost a few aircraft of my own under similar circumstances. It's not pleseant, but we go on in our endeavour to conquor the Wild Blue.

I am building my Ziroli B-25 at this moment. Her fuselage is covered with Flite Metal. I plan to glass the wing this week and start the Flite Metal process on the wing. I will fly her as that what she is for, "FLYING".

"Keep 'Em Flying!"
Flak
Old 08-08-2005, 09:22 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

JR? <g, d, r>

Old 08-08-2005, 09:25 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

I'd rather trash a beautiful scale model on it's maiden flight than see it hang forever on a ceiling. While I would have loved to have seen Tom's spectacular award-winning SBD Dauntless compete in TopGun, that fact that it went down in a cornfield on it's maiden flight takes nothing away from the glory of this model or guts it took Tom to fly it.

Old 08-08-2005, 09:36 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

I'm being totally speculative here, as I do not know if Greg Hahn flies PCM (but I would suspect that he does), and I have no idea that if so, it was in any way related to the cause of the crash. But I'm not sold on "fail-safe". It might be fine if you're straight and level, or slow, or high when you're hit. But if you're already in a low altitude turn, or a high angle of attack maneuver, it seems to me it could worsen the problem. Sustained signal loss is one thing, but a momentary glitch is something I can probably fly out of. Maybe if it could be coupled with a simple gyro it could be more effective.

I'm far from an expert on this, just my .02 worth.
Old 08-08-2005, 09:43 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down


ORIGINAL: P-51B

But, on the bright side, we are assured that we won't see the same aircraft at Top Gun next year.

I wonder what Mr. Hahn will build next?????
P-51B,
I'm glad you said that first, as I was thinking the same thing today. How callous is that.
Old 08-08-2005, 10:29 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

I only this year realized that you COULD fly the same model in TopGun for several years in a row. I was also under the naive impression that everyone at TopGun had personally designed and built the models being flown. Actually, I've got no problem with a builder/pilot team because it does mean we get to see the very best scale models being flown by the very best pilots.

I'm a bit more bothered that so many of the top-placing jets come from full fibreglass fuse kits. While those F-100's are stunning, I can't help feeling that's more like decorating (or maybe autobody work) than building. But what else would you expect from a WWI buff.
Old 08-08-2005, 10:59 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Lucky Dog. I don't think you should have published a photo of Greg's crashed plane. Too graphic. When I see somebody pull a camera out near a destoyed airplane I try to stop them. It is just something that you don't do out of respect for the builder. A crash is a huge loss and it's hard enough to deal with without having pictures of it plastered all over. Nobody takes pictures of your dead loved ones or a lost pet. Model airplanes are in the same category. Let them be remembered in their glory and not as a pile of ashes. That's my $.02.

Leo
Old 08-09-2005, 12:59 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

GH:

Sorry, dude. That really sucks. I feel privileged to have watched it fly at TG.

Spychalla:

I respectfully disagree about crash pictures:

1) The risk of loss, and the losses we suffer are the very essence of the thrill and glamour of the sport, esp. multi-engine warbirds. Why else do crowds at a meet collectively breath-hold when a P-38 lines up for take off?

2) Sharing experiences and info about crashes is one of the best ways a community of pilots can learn and improve.

3) We who have crashed appreciate the sincere condolences of guys who can really feel our pain.

4) Just as risk is the essence of thrill, perhaps the secret joy of the sport is that a crash can mean the loss of many hours and dollars, BUT there is no real tragedy...no loved ones or pets are lost. Win or lose, this is a SPORT, without the heart-wrenching consequences suffered by the brave souls who flew the real warbirds we imitate.

Let's not forget that.

Or forget them.

On a more paranoid note, it sounds very suspiscious that two big birds were lost to interference at about the same day and place. Was a frequency monitor being used?


mt
Old 08-09-2005, 01:12 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

A model is just bits of balsa and paint. It is not a living thing. Sure, it sucks when you crash but you can't mourn it's passing. I'm thankful for Mike for posting this photo because it will help me better cope with the next time I turn one of my "precious" scale creations into a pile of balsa.

Besides, I'd be willing to bet that Greg's B-25 had a considerably longer lifespan than some of the original birds (and their very real crews).

Old 08-09-2005, 06:41 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

mt kram,

1. I would make the case that an interesting or attractive plane flown with great skill is the thrill and glamour of our sport; not crashing.
2. What specific things have you learned from this shared experience of Greg's crash that you can improve from?
3. I am sure Greg appreciates sincere condolences, any pilot would, but this thread projects more than sincere condolences. Do you think Greg appreciates this thread? I'd love to get his commentary and I may. I know he lurks around on RCU from time to time. I would love for him to chime in with a comment.
4. I agree. No real tragedy. Airplanes will come and go. They all have an expiration date on them; we just don't know when it is. It is good that we're not in them when they go down as compared to full scale airplanes. However, I cannot rationalize any of that as a "secret joy" regarding a crash.

Leo

Old 08-09-2005, 07:53 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Leo,
Point taken. The last thing I'd like to do is rub salt in the wound. I admittedly felt like a bit of a "tasteless news reporter" in taking and posting the picture, but thought it was "news worthy" for lack of a better word. I have removed the picture from the post until I hear otherwise. I too have the utmost respect for Greg Hahn, and for most of the contestants I saw up at the Nats. Many are what I aspire to be in RC scale modeling.


Perhaps it is because I lost my Eindecker recently in a mid-air collision, and that I am close to having my next scale plane (that I've been building nearly a year) ready to maiden, I am feeling a bit apprehensive, and felt the need to share what I saw. Perhaps that's a bit selfish and self serving. However, the events of Saturday helped me realize again that sh... does happen in this sport, even to the best of the best. All you can do is prepare yourself and your machine to best of your ability. It's either live with that, or go back to plastic kits or static hanger queens.

Abu,
Call me a hopeless romantic, but I do somewhat relate to airplanes a living breathing things. Not in the literal sense of course. No, the loss of a model, or a real warbird does not compare to loss of a life. But it still hurts, there is a grieving process, and we hopefully move on. (Jeez... getting too deep here).

Greg,
If you're reading this, I sincerely apologize if anything I have posted here has in any way offended you.

Respectfully,
Mike Bealmear

Old 08-09-2005, 09:56 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Just an aside, the the Nats News published by the AMA also included a crash picture. That's the nature of a public event, a public crash, then public pictures.

http://www.modelaircraft.org/events/.../pdfs/0807.pdf

Regards, Gary
Old 08-09-2005, 11:32 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Hello,

What does it take to be invited to Top Gun? DP
Old 08-09-2005, 11:44 AM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Mike, I think you did us all a service by posting the photo here. No need to feel awkward about it. The US public has gotten distinctly phobic about photographers over the last few years and if a guy can't take a photo of a model crash and post it for fellow modelers there's something wrong. Now if you had stuffed a camera in Greg's face to try to capture an expression of anguish that would have been another thing but all you did was take a snapshot in a very public place -- no harm in that.

Dai Phan, it's basically a matter of building up a strong national reputation through local and then national scale competetions. I'd assume it's something that takes years of competition. But I suppose it's also possible to ride a silver bullet to the top with a one-off win in the US Scale Nats or something like the Toledo Weak Signals show.
Old 08-09-2005, 01:27 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Thanks for an interesting and civil dialogue.

mt
Old 08-09-2005, 03:44 PM
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Default RE: Top Gun B-25 Down

Guys, no one has offended me at all, you worry way too much. Loosing a "good one" is always tough. If we were only given one chance that'd be a different story, but we can always do a "better one". If you enjoy the build as I do, there's always a few things that could have been better engneered or done more reliably, or more realistically. Now I have an excuse to incorporate those changes. I look at it as sort of a refinement process.
Don't ever get the idea that I don't care, believe me it hurts, a whale of a lot more than I'd ever show in public, but we have to move on. Evaluate, test and apply what has been learned so that the next one might live longer! and there will be a next one! At least it happened where it did in the program, I wasn't over the runway or the pits. at least no one was hurt!!!!! that's the greater issue. We build em bigger and faster every year and they can be extremely dangerous when not maintained and flow properly.

Each one of us has reasons for pursuing what we do in life as well as hobbies. My choice and yours happens to involve a very high degree of risk, that's one of the motivating facts. The challenge of creating a flying machine, controllably defying gravity. The spoils of that risk is a very high degree of accomplishment and self satisfaction ( that feel good stuff) when you see your creation take to the air. And to think a hundred years ago it was but a dream!!!! I feel so priveledged just to have been given the opportunity to participate!!! and you should too!!!

always remember there's only one manditory maneuver in aviation, (landing) and you strive for the ability to choose the when and where!!!!
GH


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