118 posts

President’s Corner for October/November 2018

Well, we finally broke the heat wave, sort of… With the end of October still seeing the 80’s, it seems like we can’t win! A couple more weeks, and daylight savings time, should give us some respite.

We just finished our 2 monthly competition series, Pop Wing racing, and Electroglide for 2018.

For the Racers, Eric Shapiro took First place again this year, With Jim Bonnardel in second, and myself in third place. Jeff was not feeling well, so I did not get the Electroglide winners, but should have that info by the meeting on the 25th. Both events will have their prizes awarded at the monthly meeting. I would like to thank all participants and even more so a big thanks to Jim and Jeff for running the yearly events. Both will return in Jan 2019.

A member recently mailed me about organizing some night flying as we head into our “winter“.  if you are interested, we should have more info in the next few weeks. If there is something you want to do at the club, and you want to organize and run an event, feel free to let me know. All ideas are on the table, as long as they are safe, and do not have an increased risk of destroying aircraft.

I have had a couple of weekend members approach me over the last month talking about some unsafe behavior that is increasing. Please DO NOT come across the field directly at the pits at full throttle and yank it up at the fence. We have all seen servos, clevises, and thumbs fail at the most inopportune moments, and deliberately putting others in danger is not to be tolerated – I don’t care how good the pilot is. Please continue to call “take offs”, “landings”, “low passes”, and any time you step on to the runway for any reason. And PLEASE look before doing so. I still see people stepping, and calling out – right in front of a plane on final that they did not see because they did not look…

During the November meeting we will be voting for club officers to take the club into 2019.

I have to say that I am dismayed by the lack of response from club members when I ask for people to step up and help guide the club. For 400 members to only have 2 volunteers is disheartening…

People say that they like the club the way it is, and do not want things to change, but our bylaws put term limits on BOD members and it is time for new blood. That being said, I need 4 or 5  more people that want to get involved.

I can no longer be president, and while I had hoped Randy would step into presidency, he has some personal interest items that will require him to come off of the board completely. Voted positions are listed below.

President : empty

Vice President: empty

Treasurer: Quan Nguyen – plans to run again, thank you.

Safety Officer: Tony Blackhurst – plans to run again, thank you.

Secretary: Ken Dresser – plans to run again, thank you.

Member at large: Carl Cox – plans to run again, thank you.

Member at large: empty

Member at large: empty

Only 2 members have accepted nomination for positions. Both Eric Shapiro and Ian McKinlay are nominated for Members at large. I need participation folks!!

Please send names to me in the next 2 weeks so I can get them publicized before voting.

Last October we laid to rest Fred Duffy. He was our venerable Candy Man who welcomed members, family, and guests to our site with a smile and the offer of a sweet treat. We still miss him, and as a memorial to Fred, we held our second memorial flight of T-28 Trojans ( Freds favorite plane _ on the 20th. About a dozen pilots paid tribute in a 3 minute flight which ended with a missing man formation. Freds children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren were on site and very appreciative of our efforts. The board has filled and passed Freds candy cooler amongst ourselves and continued Freds tradition for the last year, and we passed the cooler to Freds son, Mike at the conclusion of the memorial.  Thanks to all that remembered Fred!

This month’s club fun fly event will be Foam Frenzy. Between 10:00 and 11:30, fly a foam plane to earn raffle tickets towards $150.00 worth of discount hobbies gift certificates. Randy will instruct at the pilots meeting how to earn tickets. Following the fun fly, we will have the October meeting and this month there will be dogs from Costco.

Since it will come early next month, not to interfere with Thanksgiving –  I want to mention that the club meeting/voting and Warbird Day will be held on November 17th.

Be safe, and most of all – Have fun!


See more great pics of the flyover here.

Foamy Frenzy

This month’s event is:




Just fly a foam airplane and get a raffle ticket.  One per flyer.

Raffle items are coupons for Discount Hobby Warehouse.

Goes from 10 to 11:30.  Lunch and meeting to follow.

AMA Expo West & Morgantech’s Display of 3D Printed Planes

Please click the pic below for a page with a video about the AMA Expo.  AMA Expo West will be the largest radio-control model and hobby event! We are at a new location with all-new events taking place. AMA Expo West features outdoor flying, drone racing, RC cars and trucks, trains, a boat pond, night flying, full-scale flyovers and 105,000 sq. ft. of exhibit space! Get your tickets now at: amaexpo.com!

Morgantech will have a huge selection of 3D printed planes on display in the center of the showroom floor.  They will have demonstrations of 3D printing and give-aways throughout the event.  Morgantech is a San Diego based manufacturer of 3D Printed Planes plus they make and sell 3D Printers & Mills, do Laser Cutting, and custom design work of all sorts.  Please check out their website.  Below are the information sheets used for some of the 3D printed airplanes they will have on display:


P-38 Video

The Dawn Patrol

By Brad Alix

This is an all important bulletin to all SEFSD members.

Within the past few months, have you noticed how the skies above and around our flying field have been free of enemy aircraft? Well think no more. Thanks to a few brave warriors known as “the Dawn Patrol”.

We are up at the “crack of dawn” preparing for the days sorties. We may even sneak in (from time to time) a “captured” enemy aircraft to entice the Axes to laurel him in to his death.

So if you think you have what it takes to fly with the, Patrol, (any airframe) we will see you at O-dark-30.

PopWing Racing Recap for 2018

By Jim Bonnardel

PopWing racing this year was just a small speck better than last year, when the championship was determined on the very last race possible.  Eric Shapiro took the first place award home with only a margin of 9 points, racing well enough to hold off Jim. Brad had a lock on 3rd place when the nearest racer Tuan, was not able to attend the last meet, Sorry Tuan!!  We have agreed that PopWing racing will continue again for 2019, and I urge you all to join in on the FREE FUN as there is never a charge to play in a club sponsored event.  Each time you show up on the 2nd Saturday of the month to race, you get a raffle ticket for the end of the year prize raffle.  Raffle winners do NOT need to be present to claim their gift.  So, get yourself a PopWing, and join the fun in 2019.  First race is JANUARY,  12th, so put a PopWing on your Christmas list for Santa, and be ready for the first race of the season where we always have a clinic before the race to talk about setup, and strategies.  PopWing is a 100% open event where any trick for success is openly shared.  We want you to come down, race, and HAVE FUN! 

Thanks to all for playing our reindeer games!!  See you next year!

BOD Meeting for October 2018

Oct 12, 2018

Board of Directors Meeting

Silent Electric Flyers of San Diego

Meeting starts at 7:25 pm

For this months meeting we discussed the Board Member Elections to be held on November 17, the same day as the war bird fun fly.  If you have someone in mind for a position please nominate this person. Self nominations will be accepted. It’s very important for the club to keep this process going.  

For our annual Badge image we discussed the option of making it vertical as to be more statically pleasing.  We are looking for vertical images, if you have any suggestions, please send them our way.

We discussed buying the field conditioner in bulk to get a better price.  This conditioner has worked well in the past and have no problems approving it again.

The fence contractor has been given the plans to proceed with the approved change at the rotorplex.  We are still waiting on a date.

The purchase of forever stamps has been approved as to prevent a future price increase next year.

We also talked about the holiday dinner, location and date.  We so far have penciled in a date of Jan 12, 2019. All 2018 members plus guests are welcomed.  So if you don’t join for 2019, you can still participate, however if you join for 2019 and not 2018, you will be eligible for the 2020 holiday dinner.

And Last but not least, Night Fun Flying is coming.. So stay tuned.

With 379 members as of today we the Board of Directors Thank you, the member for making this the great club it is.

Your Humble Secretary,

Ken Dresser

Meeting Adjourned at 8:36 p.m.

Electroglide Report for October 2018

By Jeff Struthers

It was a beautiful fall Saturday when we held the Last Electroglide for this year. The Santa Ana was still hanging around, 17% humidity, 81 degrees and a breeze from the west. That created some good lift conditions coming off Sea Worlds parking lot.

I took sick shortly before first launch. Club President Jim Bonnardel kindly took over giving pilots an entertaining banter while competing.

First launch had six pilots up and headed west. Scott Vance and Alex Sutton found the lift at the far western edge of our flight area. Alex had a flight time of 9:25 with a 20-point landing and Scott had a flight of 9:11 with a 10-point landing. Fred Daugherty, an experienced glider pilot, had the third longest flight time at 2:36. That hints of a tricky or tight column of lifting air.

Second launch had all pilots trying for the western lift spot again. Alex, Fred and Scott found a tight column and were working it well when an approaching full-size helicopter was spotted. Jim warned and then had to call all pilots back to our field. That created a “do over”. Jim reset the event clock and pilots relaunched with our flight area now clear. Alex Fred and Scott found the lift again and worked it well. Alex came back at 9:33 with another 20-point landing. Fred came back at 9:23 and Scott had a 9:15 aloft with a 20-point landing. Stephen Treger also picked up a 20-point landing.

Third launch was much shorter with flight times. The tight lift columns seemed to have disappeared. Scott had the long one at 2:35 with a 20-point landing. Alex and Fred both had times at 1:45, Fred picking up a 20-point landing. Stephen also getting another 20-point landing.

Forth launch also had short times. Scott had a 2:50 aloft with a 20-point landing. Alex had a 2:21 with a 30-point landing and Stephen had a 2:03 with a 30-point landing.

All told it was a nice way to finish up our 2018 season. I wish I was well enough to fly, the long flights in the first two rounds looked fun.

Scott Vance led the day in total points at 216. Alex Sutton came in second at 211 points and Fred Daugherty was third at 136 points.

Thanks to Frank Sutton for the pictures of this event.

The trophy awards and raffle prizes for the year will be awarded to Electroglide pilots at our next club meeting on October 27th.

See you there,


More great Pics from Frank Sutton here.


Camera Drones: The Ultimate Buying Guide for Pilots in 2018

This was sent to me from Mark Sheehan:
“My name is Mark Sheehan. I run My Drone Authority.
Below is an in-depth 10,000-word buying guide for people looking to purchase a drone. My goal was to make it a one stop shop for all types of pilots and every budget.
(It also goes over the right features to pay attention to, which drones to buy if you’re a recreational or professional pilot, licenses to fly a drone in certain countries, and more.)
So far, a lot of people have found it useful 🙂

SebArt Planes Available Again!

Neil Westdorp is taking up where the previous SebArt distributor has left off.  He is importing the SebArt planes, one shipping container at a time.  The SebArt planes are extremely high quality built-up ARFs.  I, your editor, have owned 5 of them.  I currently fly my Wind 110 on Sundays.  Although that one is discontinued, there are many others to choose from.  The time to order is running out quick so check out the website below and get in on the buy while you can.  Huge discounts too.  Below is from Neil:

  • “First container is scheduled to arrive middle of January 2019
  • I am running two pre-order discounts: 25% off all pattern airplanes and 10% off all jets. The pre-order discount window goes until November 2nd
  • Website (still being updated) – www.sebartusa.com
  • Facebook: @SebArtUSA

Neil Westdorp
Seb Art USA
@SebArtUSA via Facebook

President’s Corner for September/October 2018

As we finally move into Spring I am really looking forward to some cooler weather.

The Santa Ana wind patterns may keep us warm and dry over the next few weeks, but as long as it cools off shortly after, I will be good with it. The outer field areas are very dry and there is still some fire risk – I appreciate your diligence when it comes to fire safety! We are into our seventh month with no measureable rain, and the runway is extremely dry. There has been a shortage of water trucks during fire season, but it sounds like we will have one available to rent this weekend. I Have my fingers crossed!! This means a possible hour or two with no flying each weekend afternoon while laying down water and rolling the field.

We are coming up on the end of the year which means a few things. Our monthly series events – pop wing racing, and electroglide are coming to an end. October 13 and 20 respectively will officially end 2018 for these events. A BIG thanks to Jeff and Jim for spearheading these events yet again this year. If you would like to get involved in next year’s series, please see them and ask what you can do to help us carry the fun into 2019.

Also, we are again at that time of year when we are looking for new blood in the Board of Directors. I am at my term limit and will be passing the presidency on to the next shining star that wants to steer the club into his own vision. I believe Randy will throw his name into the hat for this. The other board members have stated that they would be willing to carry on into next year – but I need to point out that ALL positions are open for competition if anyone else would like the opportunity to give back to the club by serving

On the BOD. Our current members:

Chairman – Vacant

President – Brad Bender – will automatically become Chairman and vacate Presidency

Vice President – Randy Wynant

Treasurer – Quan Nguyen

Safety Officer – Tony Blackhurst

Secretary – Ken Dresser

Member at Large – Jim Bonnardel

Member at Large – Dennis Benitez

Member at Large – Carl Cox

We will be accepting nominations all of October for positions. It is acceptable to self-nominate if you would like to run. Nominees must accept their nomination (to avoid being railroaded while on vacation…). On November 1st we will officially announce nominees and send absentee ballots to 2018 members that have other plans on voting day. The vote will occur at the field during the monthly meeting on NOV 17th ( held one week early to de-conflict with Thanksgiving travel). If you want to see the club safely into the future, or even change the vision of the group as a whole, Now is your chance! I look forward to the future with someone else at the helm!!

Jim will announce shortly a new banquet fundraiser through custom ink that will offer more variations of club wear – responding to requests by members. If you have enjoyed the banquets over the last couple of years, please support the process by helping us fund it and get some nice items. Bumper stickers are also in the works!

Last October we lost our dear Friend and Candy Man – Fred Duffy, after a short illness. We still miss the way he welcomed strangers to our site, and I know a lot of current members talked with Fred before joining the club. For the last year the BOD has been carrying on the tradition of ensuring Fred’s candy cooler was stocked with goodies and on site over the weekends for those that wanted a sweet treat. Randy has the cooler now, and I will finish it next month and give the cooler back to Fred’s son, Mike.  Also, in conjunction with the October Meeting/Fun Fly, I am going to take 10 minutes and do another Fred Duffy Flight in which I would like members to fly their various models representing T-28 Trojans, which was one of Fred’s favorite planes.

If you are a member, and do not have a key for the gate and the porta potty, please take action and get a key.

We are charging our cost for keys – which is only $3.00. If you absolutely cannot afford a key, come see me and we will figure it out… DO NOT relieve yourself at our site outside of the porta potty – PERIOD!! If credibly reported, I will remove you from our club, and possibly inform the authorities if you made an obvious display… There is absolutely no reason for it.

There have been a few occasions this year when members have submitted stories about a plane they are proud of, have on their project list, or just an aviation related experience from their past. I have REALLY enjoyed these additions to our newsletter, and encourage you to keep it up. Steve Belknap, our editor, works hard to provide you a quality newsletter – and every bit helps! Also, a few more people have had success buying/selling in our “for Sale” area. You have better odds of getting a quality item from a member than from a random stranger on craigslist or RC groups…  Check it out!!

Just to bang my safety drum… There were more accidental flights over the pits and over the folks at the rotorplex area the last couple of weeks. I am not sure what is causing the trend, but we need to rectify. One way to get this under control is to remind folks that the runway is for taking off and landing only. High speed passes should be performed no closer than the edge of the grass at the other side of the runway.  This ensures a better view, and if a Dumb Thumb or Fat Finger pulls you closer to the fence, you have time to recover without making people dive under the table! Call your landings, take offs, touch and goes, and low passes. Please remember we try to fly a pattern that is dictated by the wind at the time. Into the wind over the edge of the grass – 50 feet out, and downwind 100-200 feet out. This minimizes head on collisions. Also, there is risk any time there is not blue sky between aircraft – depth perception being wildly different between individuals.  Lastly, more people are bringing larger planes and enjoying them. With larger motors and planes with multiple blade props, there is more rotational mass at the front of the plane which will increase the tendency of the plane to torque left as the tail wheel comes up. Then this really gets bad if the pilot nails it to try to get out of trouble… A nice smooth throttle coupled with being ready to apply right rudder is the key.

To close up for the month, I want to say thanks to the members for keeping drama low! Thanks for keeping the politically charged conversations somewhere else.  This month’s fun fly event on the 22nd will be Micro Madness. Between 10:00 AM and Noonish there will be events at 3 of the runway gates designed for Micro planes. Any of the UMX line will qualify to enter. There are a couple of other brands that should qualify – but Randy will have the final word. Following the fun fly we will have the monthly meeting and hot dog lunch. Dennis is trying to convince me to make Chili…

Have a great, SAFE Month!


UMX Flea Circus

Club Event

UMX Flea Circus

Come one, Come ALL to the SEFSD FLEA CIRCUS !!

Saturday, Sept 22   Events start at 10am

Bring your UMX or Ultra Micro Aircraft and play in this 3-ring CIRCUS!!!

There will be 3 different events scored, and the top 5 scores will win the appropriate Gift Certificate to Discount Hobby Warehouse

There will be 3 stations:

1- UMX Looper

2- UMX Spot Land

3- UMX Glide

Points for each flight, total high points wins.

Details at the pilot meeting.

Come on down and FLY FLY FLY

Meeting and Lunch to follow the event!!

Peik’s Airport Was Here

We fly near consecrated ground. . .  There once was an airport located just slightly East of our flying field called Peik’s Airport.  It was located South West of the intersection of the I-5 and Sea World Drive and existed from 1934 till 1957.  Although it changed in appearance over the years, it was an important part of San Diego’s aviation history.  Before mission Bay was a gleam in the San Diego’s planner’s eye, this little airport served many roles including flight training and military.  The air safety advocate John Nance’s father was a part owner of their flight school, Nance & Cooper Flight Academy.  The airport’s demise came in 1957 as a result of the expansion of Mission Bay.

Past SEFSD member Doug Nichols showed me a wonderful website called Abandoned & Little Known Airfields.  On that site are references to all the old airfields in San Diego.  Peik’s Airport is shown with plenty of documentation.  Please take a few minutes and peruse this interesting story about some of the true aviators who came before us and helped usher in aviation as we know it today.

One of the planes used at the Nance & Cooper Flight Academy was a 1947 Cessna 140.  Amazingly this same plane is still flying today.  You can read the history of this little plane here.

Finally, here is a reprint of an article published in 1967 about the airport.  This was also published in Peak Charge some time ago.  I thought it was a good idea to include it here.

If anyone has more information or stories about Peik’s airport, I would love to print it, thanks.

Electroglide Report for September 2018

By Jeff Struthers

It was a fun Electroglide this past Saturday morning. Blue skies, a mild WNW breeze of 8 mph, and an air temperature of 77 degrees.

On first launch seven pilots took to the skies shortly after 10:00 a.m. We all tried to find the lift, two of us found it in the NW area of our field. Flight times really stretched out with my time aloft at 9:24. Second longest aloft was Alex Sutton at 9:04 with a 30-point landing. Third place for that round went to Carlos Mercado at 3:28 with a 20-point landing.

The second launch had us all heading to the NW section of our flight area. Scott Vance got the long flight at 8:58 with a 20-point landing. I came in second with a flight of 8:49 and a 20-point landing. Alex came in third at 5:21 with a 20-point landing.

Third launch had us all in the NW corner again finding that great lift, when the police helicopter turned and started to cross our flight area. Word was immediately shouted to all and we pushed sticks forward, diving for the runway. The flight area was cleared very quickly, we retrieved our aircrafts, waited a few minutes, then reset the time clock and launched again.

This launch was into a slightly stronger wind and it was disturbing the lift we had recently enjoyed. Longest flight went to Scott at 7:28 with a 20-point landing. Alex came in second at 5:35 with a 30-point landing and I came in third at 5:04 with a 30-point landing.

Forth and final launch had us in the lift again. The NW section was working great with flight times in the 9- and 8-minute range. The longest time aloft was earned by Scott at 9:27 with a 30-point landing. I came in just before him at 9:05 with a 30-point landing and Fred Daugherty had 8:36 aloft.

A very fun day with solid lift coming our way. Many pilots scoring bonus landing points added to the high scores. This makes for great competition and the skill shown by all pilots in working the lift and lining up their landings correctly made for great day.

Thanks again to Frank Sutton for being our photographer.

The next Electroglide will happen on October 20th. First launch is at 10:00 a.m.

See you then,