President’s Corner

112 posts

Chairman’s Corner for Feb – Mar 2020

Hey folks! It looks like we’re starting 2020 with rain again… The weeds are already starting to come up in the outer field area, and on the runway. Thanks Dennis for chopping out some of the weeds on the runway and on the approach area!  Jim is going to be using his Mission bay park approved herbicide in the next couple weeks, it is a diluted blend so requires multiple applications. Thanks Jim! Please be courteous to folks that are volunteering to help maintain our field and loudly call take-off and landing at all times.

We’ve had some issues at the field recently were people have been coming in and doing a lot of donuts in the parking lot. Thank God they’re not getting to the runway! I’m not sure if they are hopping a curb somewhere, or if the gate is being left open. Please do your part and if you’re the last one out for the day – lock the gate! I know the lock requires some fiddling as you come in and out,  we’re going to work on that over the next couple of weeks to make it a little better for everybody.

As we move into 2020 there are a couple things I want everybody to take a look at. Please double check your fire extinguishers to make sure they still have a proper charge, and also look at your first aid kits and see if anything requires updating. Last year I was handed a band-aid by a member that must have been over 10 years old, it had the consistency of a rice crispy…

Chairs Are starting to get sparse at the field. A combination of age, and leaning back in them are taking a toll. If you intend to buy new yard furniture in the next couple of months, please bring your old items to the field – we will make good use of it over the year.

We are currently at 240 members, the 200 foot ceiling has not seem to have affected our membership. There are still reports of people flying the pattern during the week up to 700 feet, please don’t be that guy risking the future of our club! We continue to attempt to get our 400 foot altitude limit restored, it seems like it’s going to be a long road finding someone at Lindbergh ATC to have a dialog with.

Swap meet season is approaching, but if you have a few dollars burning a hole in your pocket, there have been some nice items posted in the clubs For Sale By Members area.

Welcome back to Carlos, who continues to recover from his accident one year ago. He is flying again and hoping for a full recovery.

Our club meeting this month will be held on Saturday the 22nd, the fun Fly event will be altitude quest, followed by the meeting and our hotdog lunch.

Hope everybody has a great month!

Brad

Chairman’s Corner for Jan – Feb 2020

We had another great holiday banquet this past Saturday! I saw a lot of you there and I know everybody had a great time. For those that missed it, I missed you! Banquet pictures should populate on the site within a couple of days. Dinner was outstanding as usual, the hospitality at the Harbor House was amazing, and the raffles were stellar! The ladies again appreciated the effort put forth to get raffle prizes more tailored towards them. Tony and I had a lot of fun presenting and holding the raffle itself. If you can manage it you should try to come next year.

Still no response from the FAA or Lindbergh Air traffic control about raising our altitude ceiling back to 400 feet. We continue to attempt contact, and Steve Manganelli is going to utilize his years of experience to attempt a dialog. Government bureaucracy at its finest! We are still better off than the Chula Vista club, which is currently shut down from flying RC airplanes until they work their letter of agreement with the Navy’s REAM field in imperial Beach. A couple of their members have joined our club over the last month, please continue to make them feel welcomed. I have put out the olive branch to their clubs electric flying members, and we will let them come fly at our field for a couple of weeks – as long as they have current AMA and one of our members explain the protocols involved with flying at our site… If it looks like their fight will be a long one, we will ask them to join our club.

Steve Neu is investigating a new airplane to use for our monthly race series which ended due to the non-availability of Popwings. He has also volunteered to be the race master for this year! Steve has an 800mm FMS trojan that he is using as a test mule, it is fairly inexpensive. If the trojan makes sense, and people are willing to buy them, we could have a race series starting again in March. More to follow.

 This past weekend Jeff Struthers initiated the first Electroglide for 2020, and it seems to be a success! A 10 second motor run keeps the planes just below 200 feet. It’s a bit more of a challenge to add minutes to your flight time while starting out quite a bit lower! Thanks Jeff, and the glider4 pilots willing to try the event with the new format.

Our president, Tony Blackhurst, is going to take custody of our barbecue equipment for the year, and Carl Cox will be the hotdog master. Please say thank you to Mark Davis for doing it this past year when you have a chance!

Ken Dresser your fun Fly coordinator, has finalized the list of meeting day fun place for the year, and it should be on the website calendar shortly. He is bringing back some old favorites, as well as new challenges, it should be a lot of fun! This months event one of Kennys favorites, limbo. The event should start at 10:00 AM and conclude somewhere between 11 AM and 12 PM. Afterword we will have the monthly club meeting at the field and our hotdog lunch. Hope to see you there!

The pictures I’ve chosen for this month are some of our younger members, and I want to thank everybody who has been mentors to these individuals. They are the future! Some of them are flying better than some long-time members…

Brad

President’s Corner for Jan – Feb 2020

Hey Pilots,

I would like to welcome everybody to a new flying year. We had a great time last year with all of our club events and flying adventures. We have an exciting year planned so please stay tuned for all the updates.
We had a successful holiday party at the Harbor House and l want to put out a big thanks to all those at the harbor house who helped make our event as wonderful as it was. We had a great raffle with plenty of airplanes chargers and batteries we also had gifts for the wives. I would like to invite everybody to attend next year’s party, it should be just as fun as this years. 
I would like to remind everybody that we are limited to 200’. I know it’s not ideal but we do have to stay at that limit until we get further authorization from the tower. We are working to get our clearance back up to 400 feet but it will take time so please be patient with us during this time of transition. Please be respectful of your fellow members and stay below that altitude. Anything over that jeopardizes the entire club and it would be unfortunate if you were the one that was the catalyst for Having our field shut down. If you are consistently not staying under the altitude limit, we will have no choice but to ask you not to come back to the field and jeopardize the other few hundred members we have at this club. 
The field is nice and hard. Please be aware that when it rains it does get very soft please don’t walk on it so that our other pilots can enjoy the field also. 
And last, but not least, I would like to thank Steve Belknap our editor for his tireless dedication to the club and maintaining our newsletter and all our club reminders. 
This is going to be an exciting year so please stay tuned for all the good clean fun. 
Sincerely,

Tony Blackhurst. 

Chairman’s Corner for Dec 2019 – Jan 2020

Hey guys, I hope Christmas brought you all of the little goodies you were hoping for!

I wish everybody a happy New Year’s and I hope 2020 is the year that meet your expectations.

Quite a few things to talk about as we finish up 2019, so I’ll jump right into it. Thank you everybody for respecting the altitude limitations that have been placed on us by the FAA and air traffic control, and keeping your aircraft below the 200 foot ceiling imposed upon us. Like you, I am unhappy with the decrease, but at the current time this is our ceiling. Quan, Eric, and Steve Manganelli will be dealing with air traffic control and the FAA in the future to see if we can get our flight ceiling restored to at or near 400 feet – which was our previous limit.

 We had elections for the Board of Directors in the end of November, and I would like to welcome the board members for 2020. Tony Blackhurst is again our President, stepping in as vice president is Steve Manganelli, Quan Nguyen carries over his duties as treasurer, Ken Dresser continues the secretary and as our monthly FUNFLY event coordinator, Jeff Struthers is new to the board as one of our members at large, Carl Cox continues as a member at large, and Eric Shapiro also continues as a member at large. As the previous President, I will continue as Chairman. Thanks to all of you for stepping up to help guide our club into 2020. George Sullivan is stepping away from the Board of Directors, but will continue on as our membership coordinator. Steve Belknap, of course, continues as our editor for SEFFSD newsletters and the manager for our website. A great big “THANK YOU” to all mentioned for stepping up instead of stepping back!

2020 membership is in progress. All 2019 club memberships expire At midnight on December 31. There are no exceptions. The date printed on the bottom of your membership cards denoted your AMA expiration date – not the club member expiration date. We do not pro-rate, and there are no 2-year memberships for SEFSD. George has designed and is printing the new 2020 badges. For those of you who don’t pick up your badge on badge day at the field, Jan 4th, you should receive them in the mail within the first couple weeks of January. Have you renewed yet? There’s no reason to wait! Once you have your AMA membership for 2020 you can renew your club membership at  https://sefsd.azurewebsites.net/VerifyAma  and 2019 members can purchase their tickets to the holiday banquet at https://sefsd.azurewebsites.net/EventTicket .  As of this writing, there are about 30 seats remaining to the holiday banquet at the Harbor House at 6PM on Saturday, Jan 18th. I highly recommend you get your seats reserved, it will be a great event again this year with lots of raffle prizes and also- like last year, prizes for the ladies.

We have received a lot of rain over the last month and the field is in very fine condition. I really appreciate the members staying off of the field when it’s damp or muddy. Please continue with this trend, all will appreciate it! A couple things to mention from a safety standpoint since we seem to have past members who forget some basics, and new members coming in from other clubs. Unless taking off or landing, please keep your aircraft over the weeds at the far edge of the field. High speed passes do not belong over the fence! One small error and your aircraft is in somebody’s face or in somebody’s vehicle. If you know you are losing control of your aircraft you should be the first to speaking up, warning other pilots that you have an issue. A loud “ HEADS UP!” or “LOOK OUT!” could stop a potential visit to the emergency room. Also, please call out loudly announcing your take offs, landings, and anytime you step out of a gate or from the field onto the runway. We continue to have issues of members stepping out – without announcement – right in the path of aircraft that are landing or taking off. The pilots are concentrating on their aircrafts, it’s on you to call out – and just as important, to turn your head and LOOK to ensure it is safe. Let’s be safe!

Now is also a good time to take a look at your first aid gear and see if it’s still up to your expectation. While some items don’t have an expiration date, some do – and you don’t want to be in need of something that you can’t use. Maybe a look at your extinguishers is also justifiable?

Weather permitting, we will have badge day at the field on Saturday, January 4. This will be an opportunity to come to the field grab a slice of pizza and save the club some postage by collecting your badge in person. New members who need keys for the gate in the bathroom can purchase them at this time for our cost, which is three dollars apiece.

There will be some changes to the clubs monthly events for 2020. Popwing Racing has officially ended due to the non-availability of Popwings. There have been a few suggestions of other aircraft to use as alternates. However, our Popwing master (Thanks JIMMY) for the last several years is currently too busy to run the race series for the year… If you have an aircraft to suggest that is inexpensive and readily available *AND* you would like to take over as race master for the year, please bring your suggestions to Tony, Steve, or myself. The current height limitations are forcing us to modify the electro-glide event, however, It will continue on the 3rd Saturday monthly with a slightly different format. The F5B, F5D teams will also continue with a few modifications, and their 2020 schedule should be on the Calendar within a few weeks. Night flying is also currently on hold per our agreement with ATC at Lindburgh, but hopefully we can have that discussion and renew night operations shortly…

Mark Davis has been our hot dog master for the last year, and he has done an amazing job!! THANKS Mark!  His work plan for this year has a lot more travel in it and we are looking for a volunteer to take over on fun fly days. It involved moving/taking custody of the club grill, and purchasing/bringing the supplies (Dogs, Buns, Condiments, Chips, and Beverages) You will be reimbursed by the club. Please let us know if you would like to help!

There is no event this month with so many on travel. Kenny is making the event calendar for 2020 now, If you want to suggest something new, let me know and I will pass it on.

Here’s to a Happy and Healthy New Year!!

Brad

 

Chairman’s Corner for Nov./Dec. 2019

Hey folks!

Welcome to the fall! Hopefully the hottest days and the red flag warnings are behind us. With rain in the forecast as I write this, the field should smooth itself out and be in AMAZING shape for the rest of the year.

One major point of interest this month for the club is the agreement coming out of Lindbergh air traffic control which is based upon changes from the FAA regarding the use of small unmanned aircraft systems within 5 miles of an operational airport. I know other board members will be discussing the requirements, so I won’t go too deep. Starting December 1 we will have to have a really good look at how high we are flying at our site. The agreement presented to us by the FAA Western Service Center will limit flights at our site to 200 ft AGL.  Quan has engaged the air traffic control center in an attempt to discuss options. More as we go into 2020.

We had a very successful Nightfly event the evening of November 10. Thank you Ken Dresser for organizing it! About a dozen pilots and quite a few family members showed up at dusk for pizza and fun. We may look at a night fly again as we move into 2020. However, right now part of the memorandum with air traffic control states no flying from dusk to dawn, but one fight at a time…

As we mentioned last month, our post holiday banquet for 2019 will again be held at the Harbor House on 18 Jan. Like last year, there will be $20 collected for each attendee which will cover an amazing meal, good times with family and friends, and your raffle ticket for some amazing prizes. As last year, there will be prizes for fliers and spouses. Quan is using his computing expertise to automate the process to purchase your tickets. Expect to hear more from him, and a blast from the club during the first week of December as ticket sales open. Seating will again be limited to 130 members and their guests, and will only be available to members for the 2019 calendar year. Buy your tickets early to ensure you attend!

Also, kicking off at the beginning of December will be renewals for a club membership for 2020. It looks like we will finish 2019 with 345 members. If you know you are going to join for 2020, please get it done early so we can get your badge to you early Jan! Quan will be shifting over the membership application to 2020 on the website the beginning of December. The system will again validate that your AMA membership is up-to-date before allowing you to proceed for payment. Have you purchased next years AMA yet? If you need your card quickly, please mail either Quan or myself and let us know.

This Saturday, 23 November, we will have the club meeting which will include the end of year vote for club officers to carry us into 2020. I have had a couple members step up to fill board positions for departing members. Steve Manganelli has volunteered himself as your vice president, and Jeff Struthers has stepped up to fill an open member at large position. I fully expect both of them to provide valuable insights in the future guidance of our club. If you have decided to nominate yourself last minute, I will be unable to send ballots out via email, and will need you to present yourself at the meeting with your nomination for any club officer position.

The Fun Fly event which will be held prior to the club meeting on the 23rd will be Warbird Day. Between approximately 10 AM and noon, flying will be restricted to any aircraft that has fought in any conflict in the world. Ken Dresser, your new master of fun, well set the rules allowing people a chance at a $150 worth of gift certificate to Discount Hobby Warehouse.

I would like to close out this month with a big THANK YOU to a lot of people who have went above and beyond in supporting the club and it’s endeavors this year. For our yearly club events, I want to shout out to Jim Bonnardel, and Jeff Struthers. Thank both of you for running pop wing racing and electroglide so well. Right now their futures are unclear, But hopefully we can figure something out as we move ahead. Thanks Ken Dresser for stepping in to make the monthly events a lot of fun.  I also want to thank Dennis Laberge for all of his support and keeping the site maintained, from pulling weeds, to assisting with maintenance of the tables, and driving the roller for hours when we are maintaining the field, Dennis is always there when there is work to be done with a smile on his face. Carl Cox and Scott Vance also step up whenever we ask for a work party. Another to Jim Bonnardel for his time and effort s getting the fencing right at the rotorplex, and replacing numerous tables with a lasting solution.  Please take a chance to say THANK YOU to John Weaver the next time you see him at Discount Hobbies for Giving us a break on the Fun Fly raffle prizes which lets us give back even more to the members. Thank you Steve Belknap for managing our website and putting together this newsletter for your monthly reading pleasure. A SUPER Big shout out to Mark Davis for taking care of us on Fun Fly/meeting days with the hot dogs and refreshments. His Salsa is the best!!, and Finally a thank you to our 2019 Board of directors for stepping to the plate this past year.

THANK YOU!

Brad

President’s Corner for Nov./Dec. 2019

Hey pilots,

We are coming to the end of the year and I want to thank everybody for a great year of flying. I would like to remind everybody that we are voting this month for club officers. So if there’s anybody you would like to nominate, please do so.  If you want to nominate yourself, that’s fine as well. We will be holding the vote at this months meeting which is on November 23. Please have a say in what your club does and how it operates. 
We have received a response to our LOA from the FAA. As of December 1, we are restricted to a 200 foot altitude and daylight hours only. I know this is not ideal but we are still allowed to fly and have access to our flying field. We are negotiating with the FAA and hope to bring our flight ceiling back up to 400 feet but in the meantime please respect the altitude change until further notice. We know 200 feet is low for some pilots we are doing what we can to bring that back up so please be respectful and fly to 200 feet. We want to be back at 400 feet and are working hard to get there and get it done so please be patient with us. This is ongoing and we will keep you informed. 
We will be holding our Christmas party on January 18. We will be reserving the harbor house again this year and are expecting around 130 seats to be available. Tickets will be $20 apiece so first come first serve. Once 130 have been sold there will be no more seats available. We always have a great time at the party and hope to see you all there. 
I want to thank you all again for bringing your fire extinguishers. I have seen a lot more fire extinguishers at the field which is great, keep it up. You guys are awesome and I hope to serve you better in the coming year so please feel free to contact me and give me any input that you have.  Thank you again. 
 
Sincerely 

Tony Blackhurst. 

Chairman’s Corner for Oct./Nov. 2019

As we get closer to the end of the year, I hope everyone met their flying goals, whether it was mastering a new type of craft, a new style of flying, or just getting it done without crashing!

Right off the bat, I would like to mention that the seasonal Santa Ana currents are in full swing – bringing warm, dry winds to San Diego. Nearly all of the county is designated a red flag zone as I write this. The outer field area is extremely dry and could flare up easily if there is an incident. Please continue to bring your extinguishers and be ready to use them if needed. If anything gets out of control, we need to call 911 and direct fire response to South Shores Park.

The FAA has held quite a few meetings this month talking about the fate of model aviation in the United States. Still more to follow, but it sounds like – again- we will be needing a letter of agreement with Lindbergh air traffic control center to continue flying at our site into the future. Thank you to Steve Neu, Tony Blackhurst, Quan Nguyen, and Eric Shapiro for spearheading this effort and opening lines of communication with the FAA and ATC Lindbergh. One way to keep ourselves off of the bad FAA radar for now, is to make sure that all active members have registered themselves at the FAA drone zone website and placed their registration numbers on each aircraft. Also, it is more critical than ever that we do not bust our 400 foot ceiling. If we are part of the problem, they will just make us go away.

Last weekend I had a member from the drone area approach me at the main runway inquiring if I knew the status of drone flights from our site. He stated that in the middle of his flight that day, his DJI multi rotor interface instructed him to land and wouldn’t allow him to take off again. He stated that I should send something out to the club with the current condition of permissions at our site. I am sorry, but I am just not that up-to-date on the permissions required to fly the with current updates to each drone used at our site…. While there are a couple club members who are really into it and try to remain current, if you are drone operator it will be in your best interest to go online regularly and see what changes are being made.

Quan has again secured us the use of the Harbor House Restaurant for our end-of-year banquet coming up. It has been a great site for our event for the last two years, and I expect it to be just as great this year! It was booked on the day we originally requested, so now we are going to have the event on January 18. Mark your calendar! We try not to use membership funds directly for this event. Due to poor turn outs at our fundraising events, we will again be asking for $20.00 per person as we did last year, and will again limit seating to 130 members/guests. We will have raffle prizes for members and spouses as we did last year. We sold out early last year, so once ticket sales are announced I recommend not procrastinating. More information to come.

We have received enough club member nominations to the Board of Directors to allow us to field a complete board for 2020. If you would like to compete for a position, make sure you get your name to me, and the position you would like to run for, by November 01 so I have the chance to send email ballots to the club for any positions that will be competed. Voting for board members will be held during our club meeting scheduled for November 23rd at the field. Also in November, we are trying to pull together an organized night fly event. On November 10, the day before Veterans Day, and the week after daylight savings reverts, we will have pizza and fun starting around 4 PM and taking us up to 10 PM or later. If you have a night flyer aircraft and want to come out and enjoy an evening of camaraderie, and still be able to sleep in on the holiday, I hope to see you!

It looks like we’re going to finish up 2019 right around 340 members. While AMA is always required to fly at our site, Usually – for the month of November we give new members a pass and have them pay for their next years membership in December when we open renewals for the new year. There are always questions about when your club membership expires. ALL SEFSD membership goes from January 1 to December 31 of the year. All 2019 memberships will expire on December 31 2019. There may be a separate date on your membership card that reflects your AMA expiration date. This is not the club membership expiration date! Speaking of AMA. Have you renewed for 2020 yet?

We finished our two yearly event series in October, Electroglide, and pop-wing racing. Jeff Struthers has already given the awards for first second third place and had a drawing for the participants. Jim Bonnardel plans to present the awards and any other prizes at the banquet in January. Congratulations to all winners! The series were a lot closer this year than ever before.

This months fun fly will be Kenny’s choice, Show up and see what goes down! Following the monthly event we will have our club meeting and Hot Dogs!

Are you going to the AMA EXPO? See you there??

Brad

President’s Corner for Oct./Nov. 2019

Hey pilots,

Another great month of flying has passed. Thank you for help making this club so great. Thank you to those that bring their fire extinguishers with them, that is a good sign that we care about our field and the safety of those around us. We still have a lot of dry weeds so please be prepared for any event.
We are still looking for nominations for Board of Directors. Please make your submissions to the board if you want to be a part of growing your hobby and making this club great the way you see fit. Please remember to vote for those that you want to see lead. 
We are still excepting photos for next year’s ID if you want to see your photo as the ID please bring it to the attention of George Sullivan as he is the coordinator for IDs. So if you would like to see your picture of your airplane submit it so it can be reviewed and voted on for next year‘s club ID. 
Tables are for airplanes. Please refrain from using the tables as chairs.  We still have a few that are in need of repair and we would not like to see anybody injured due to the table giving way.
We did get a new batch of keys and they do work, they are just a little on the loose side I checked them all personally and they do work for both locks that we access. If you do find a key that does not open either, please see one of the board members and we will look at getting you a key that works, thank you for your patience. 
I have enjoyed being your president this year and look forward to next year this is a great club with many members and I want to see it succeed, and with your help I know we can. Thank you and have a great next month of flying. 

Sincerely,

Tony Blackhurst. 

Chairman’s Corner for Sep./Oct. 2019

Thank God Fall is finally here!!

 This past summer didn’t get as hot as last year, but seem to drag on forever. Even though cooler weather and even some rain is on the way, we still have to be careful about the fire danger in the outlying field area. Please keep your fire extinguishers handy If needed, and be ready to respond.

 I won’t be able to make this months meeting due to an out-of-town event, so there are quite a few things I want to touch on in this article.

 To start, I am still looking for a volunteer to help our treasurer, Quan, with event planning for our yearly banquet. We have some had some great end of year banquets the last few years, and I want to keep this positive trend going. Quan can’t do it by himself! If you have any event planning or just want to get involved, please let me, Tony, or Quan know. We need you!

 As we finish of 2019, One task that needs to be completed is voting for board of director officers to take us into 2020. While some of our current officers have agreed to stay on for 2020, all positions are up for competition! If you want to get involved, if you want to show us the direction you think our club should go, or if you just want to see what the board is about, feel free to put your name in the hat for a board of directors position. For me, the last few years have been very rewarding, and I would like to pass that experience on to the next generation of directors. If you would like to nominate yourself, or if you would like to nominate someone else (with their permission), please send your or their name to myself or Tony and we will get it promoted to the club that you would like a position on the board.  Voting for Officers will be held during the November club meeting.

Still no new news on our letter of agreement with the Air Traffic Control at Lindbergh. Sometimes no news is good news… For now we have not been told to stop flying, we have just been told to standby for further direction. The last actual response we received was that the FAA and Southern California Traffic Control centers were writing one letter of agreement to cover all clubs within 5 miles of an airport in SoCal. Thank you to Tony Quan Steve and Eric for keeping us abreast of any changes in our status. Along with this though, goes the current requirement from the FAA to register yourself as a pilot of recreational small unmanned aircraft, and put your registration numbers on all aircraft that you fly. We did have an FAA officer visit our site a couple of months ago, and state that he is authorized to write tickets and dispense fines for each aircraft that does not have a registration number. Nearly everyone here is an adult, and if you’re not an adult – you have an adult in your family that should be ensuring you’re following the current guidelines from the FAA.

As of the first week of September we were at 332 members for SCFSD. A little lower than last year, but not by much. For those folks who are still on the fence for joining for this year, we are still the best value in town as far as local clubs go. It still disturbs me when I go to the rotorplex and see past members flying with 2016 badges stating they didn’t know they were expired…

Something else we need to do at the end of each year is pick a new picture for the following years membership badges. I have asked George, Our membership coordinator, to receive and sort through picture submissions for the 2020 membership badges and pick one for use. I would like members to send aviation oriented pictures to george@oldharborvideo.com  What I don’t want is George buried under gigabytes of photographs! if you have one or two favorites in a landscape orientation, please send them to George and you never know!

 On September 27 we will have our monthly fun fly which is SCALE Day. Ken Dresser has volunteered to run our fun fly’s for the remainder of the year, and I believe he has a fun day plan for all. The only requirement is that your plane must be a scale model of a real airplane. Ken will state the event requirements to get a chance at the $150 worth of gift certificates for Discount Hobbies as the event starts Saturday at 10 AM. Between 10 AM and 12 PM flying will be limited to scale aircraft after which we will have our monthly club meeting at the field, followed by the hotdog lunch served up by Mark Davis. I hope everybody has a great month!

Brad

President’s Corner for Sep./Oct. 2019

Hey pilots,

Another great month of flying is complete. As you all know, the FAA and the AMA are requiring that we add our numbers to our aircraft. It is not the board’s responsibility to check and make sure that your numbers are on your airplanes. It is your responsibility to maintain flight worthiness of your aircraft. If someone comes and checks, the fine will be your responsibility. I would hate to see our members be fined for a simple number that can be put on with a LabelMaker or a sharpie. So please don’t be that guy who gets fined for not having his numbers on his aircraft. 
Just a friendly reminder that it is still fire season so please bring your fire extinguishers with you. And thank you to those gentlemen who have been bringing their fire extinguishers to the field. 
Please no sitting on the tables we still have a couple more to change out. Safety is your responsibility if you sit on the table and it breaks that’s never a good thing. 
We are taking photo submissions for next year‘s badge ID. if you would like your aircraft picture to be on that ID please submit your pictures to be considered. 

Last but not least, we are coming to the end of the year and we will be asking for nominations for the Board of Directors for next year. If you know anybody or want to nominate yourself please feel free. We are always looking for new members to step up and become part of the board to help shape the club in the direction you wanted to go. The closer we get the better we will know who is going for what position so feel free to nominate yourself for a position on the board. 

Sincerely 

Tony Blackhurst. 

Chairman’s Corner for Aug./Sept. 2019

 Hey fellow Flyers!

 I hope the summer has been as good to you as it has to me. No Whammies!

 Well it hasn’t been as hot so far as last summer, However the rains earlier in the year and really caused a growth explosion in the outer field area. The fire hazard and is high, and I appreciate the members that routinely bring fire extinguishers for the worst case scenario. Please be extremely careful anytime you’re walking around out there as there a whole lot of gopher holes, and trip hazards in the field.

   We are still without an official letter of agreement with Lindbergh air traffic control. We submitted our LOA proposal about a month ago, and the FAA rejected it, stating that they were going to make their own proposal to cover all flying sites in Southern California.  For now we have not received communication stating we were restricted, and the AMAs FAA rep stated at the beginning to fly unless told otherwise. More to follow on the LOA, hopefully the process doesn’t take too long. Remember an FAA Officer did visit our field a while back and re-stated requirement for each pilot to register with the FAA and display their registration number on each aircraft. Also each pilot is required to print out their FAA letter that they received upon registration and have it with them to display upon request. The officer clearly stated that he is able to administer fines for each aircraft not displaying the pilots number, but I don’t want to come to that. It is currently the rule and we should follow it!.  Remember our hard ceiling for any aircraft operations is 400 feet, I need everyone to stay below that mark. It looks like the changes Jeff has made to electroglide have been effective in making that event legal.

    We have had a chance to get some field maintenance done this month, from reinforcing the latch on the porta potty, getting the runway doused and rolled out, to replacing five of the table tops on site. I want to throw out a thanks to George Sullivan for managing the field rolling. He was greatly assisted in the process by Jim Bonnardel, Carl Cox, and Dennis LaBerge.   Jim was also the driving force and replacing five of the old damaged tables with quality boards that should last 10 to 12 years. Thank you guys for all your help!

   As we are on the downward side of 2019, I’d like to mention a couple things. I’m still looking for a volunteer to assist Quan in planning and setting up our 2019 end of your banquet. We’ve had a great events the last couple years and I would like to carry this on! If you would like to get involved please let either myself, Tony, or Quan know. Also as we finish off the year we’re going to be looking for club officers to take us into 2020. If you’re interested in a position on the board of directors please communicate that interest to any boardmember and we will give instructions on how to proceed.  Serving on the board for a year or two gives you a chance to see how the club operates and allows you to have a guiding hand to make the club your vision of what you think it should be.

 I have seen some pretty bad sunburns this month, so please if you need to – bring portable shade, and make sure you have enough fluids to stay hydrated.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the flea circus at last months fun Fly, it was a great time! This months event will be limbo, as run by Ken Dresser. Kenny has stepped up and volunteered to run all the fun flies for the rest of the year, thank you Ken Dresser!  Keep in mind that for the limbo fun fly this month there will be no micros. Kenny will be on spot to decide what counts as a micro The Fun Fly should run between approximately 10 o’clock and 11:30 AM, after which we will have the monthly club meeting at the field, and our customary hotdog lunch  prepared by Mark Davis. 

Here’s to hoping it cools off for September!

Brad

President’s Corner for Aug./Sept. 2019

Hey Pilots,

First off I wanted to start by saying thank you to all our members for making this club super great. And continue to do what is required to keep our site safe and allow pilots to fly without any interruptions. Remember, your AMA number must be displayed on the outside of the aircraft and also your AMA UAS number must be on there as well. Just a reminder to stay within our boundaries and below ceiling limits, this will help us to maintain our Fields as a recreational flying field. 
This month we rolled the field for the second time this year and the field looks great so it should hold up for the next couple of months. Hopefully, we have one more rolling right before the end of the year. Also three tables were changed out, so please be aware that we still have tables that are in disrepair so please don’t sit on those tables. We will continue to monitor the situation with the tables and remove and replace as necessary. 
As always please remember to close the gate behind you when you are the only one there and the last one leaving the field. Our site safety depends on every member to maintain the gate locked when necessary. If you need a new key they can be purchased for three dollars from the president, VP, the chairman and member at large Dennis Laberge. 
We are still in process for our letter of agreement, any major announcements will be made to the club when necessary. Please follow Mission bay park rules, AMA and FAA regulations during flight. 
Thank you again for another great month of flying and look forward to many more, see you at the field. 

Thank you,

Tony Blackhurst. 

Chairman’s Corner for July/August 2019

Our efforts to establish a Letter of Agreement with Lindbergh air traffic control continue. I would like to thank BOD members Quan, Steve, and Eric for their Efforts. Also a big Thank you to Steve Manganelli for his contributions and experience dealing with Government entities. Our LOA was submitted this week and we are waiting for a reply from the officials involved. While this process is underway we have not been instructed to cease operations, so we are still using our site. It is very important that we adhere to the posted guidelines at our site. Please make a STRONG effort to keep aircraft below 400 feet. Some folks have a harder time judging altitude than others – so If you think “I wonder if I am too high?” – You are too high and should not linger. Along these lines, Jeff has also reduced the motor run times for Electroglide to keep the gliders closer to our limits.

Late last month we had an Officer from the FAA visit our site. He was happy we were in talks with the tower, but was very unhappy that less than half of the models (Planes AND Multi-rotors) on site had FAA registration numbers displayed per the current legislation. While neither I nor the BOD members serve as FAA Police, and are not going to be inspecting your craft – I am motivated to state that the FAA requirement to register yourself and display your numbers can get you in hot water legally and the possibility of a hefty fine is not out of the question. 99% of us are grown-ups, Nuff said…

The Independence Day Raffle went fairly well, We had more funds come in than last year, but still not as much as I was hoping for. As we make plans for the next Post – Holiday Banquet we will determine if the members will have to kick in for their meal as they did last year.  I am looking for a volunteer or two to help with the banquet committee this year, Please let Me, Tony, or Quan know if you would like to get involved!

Speaking of Independence Day, The weather cooperated and the fireworks show was the best we have had in the last couple of years! The breeze was perfect and blew the smoke away to give a great view from our field. Thanks to those on site for carrying their trash out with them. Our area was the cleanest part of Mission Bay the next morning.

The outlying field area is very dry, please be careful! Those with extinguishers please be ready if we need you! We are setting up a water truck and roller in the next couple of weeks to get the field back in shape, but I still need to ask you to not kick at pebbles and rocks in the surface as that only makes things worse.

Obviously the cool months are behind us and as we get ready or August and September I need to throw out the need for sun block, and hydration. We have had a few members show up this year looking like bandaged mummies after having cancers removed, try to avoid long term exposure if you can! A couple of summers ago a member was suffering from severe dehydration and almost was hospitalized. Bring Water for you and any pets! I have had people approach me and ask for water, and while I like to share, if I give you my water- then I have to leave earlier than planned. Fair?? Not really. Bring your own fluids.

This month’s fun fly event on the 27th will be the Flea Circus. Between 10 AM and Noon all flight will be restricted to Micro aircraft. There should be some neat events! Our usual hot dog lunch and board meeting will follow.

I hope everyone has a GREAT month,

Brad

Chairman’s Corner for June/July 2019

Hey Guys and Gals,

I have a lot to put out this month so I hope I don’t put you to sleep before you get to the bottom!

First I need to state the status of our club as it relates to the FAA and Lindberg ATC. At the moment our field is in what is considered class B airspace. That means that there was no “automatic” permission granted for unrestricted model use up to 400 feet. The most recent direction from the AMA was to continue utilizing our site unless otherwise informed. Steve N., Quan, and Eric have been in contact with and received contact information for the lead air traffic controller and local FAA rep and have forwarded same to the AMA who will develop the Memorandum of Agreement which should give us full permission to continue on at our premier site. With this in progress I would like all members to review our club and AMA safety requirements and ensure we are all flying well within our posted safety guidelines. Please limit all flights to the prescribed maximum altitude of 400 Feet, and do not come closer than 25 feet ( 50 feet preferred ) to people or wildlife. Any time we are close to 400 feet a spotter should be used to watch for inbound full scale air traffic. All pilots need to get lower than 100 feet when there is ANY full scale activity in the area anywhere between Fiesta Island and the I-8 .

We have authorized the funds for replacement or the 3 worst tables at the flight line. The member doing the work ( Jim ) volunteers his time and has been very busy lately, so please exercise a bit of patience and do not actively increase the breakdown of the tables by picking away at them, smacking them with hard objects, or sitting on them. We may need another month or two to get them done.

As in years past, we will be having a “Member Only” event at the field on the 4th of July for you, family, and friends. All day long we will ask members to close the gate after you pass through. Don’t let people past you into the lot if they do not have current membership badges. If you have guests arriving later, please arrange to meet them at the gate to let them in, then lock the gate behind them as they pass through.  It is a LOT easier to control the madness if we keep control of access all day. Usually we do an all day event with some of us coming early in the morning and staying for the fireworks. We will have lunch available for purchase on site,  and I am asking for two or three volunteers to bring a couple of small gas grills later for those who want to bring and cook some dinner on site I am going to ask a board member to bring the clubs grill also. As a reminder, you are all grownups, but I am obligated to state that Mission Bay Park promotes an alcohol free/smoke free environment.  The Sea World Fireworks generally go off right in front of us around 10:00 P.M., then as you exit the site afterwards – you go across Sea World drive at the light and turn left onto Old Sea World drive, it will take you a bit east to Friars road where you can make a quicker getaway. The lunch plan has been finalized, Quan has set up the same food truck that was on site last year to set up around 11:00AM and serve until the demand dies down.  Leilani’s Food Truck will be on site to sell lunch tasty plates around 11:00 A.M and the menu will include choices of a Teriyaki plate, Kalua pork plate, Aloha plate, Kalua pork and teriyaki chicken, Teriyaki beef, and Ahi poke with vegetarian options available for Dave Gordon…. Sides will be Rice, Green salad, or Macaroni salad. Beverages will also be available for purchase at the truck, or bring your own. Around noon there will be a really great raffle purposed to raise funds for our end-of-year holiday banquet. The current prize line-up is valued at over $3500 dollars and includes some GREAT airplanes and large brushless outrunners donated by Steve Neu. Tickets for this raffle will be $1.00 each, and I will say that if the people that enjoyed the banquet last year each purchase 20 tickets, that will get us half way to funding next year’s event. There have been some ticket sales at the field, but for those of you that don’t make it down on the weekends, there have been blasts to your registered e-mail account with instructions on how to purchase tickets using either PayPal, credit cards, or checks by mail. Thanks George for managing raffle ticket sales this year!!  [Tickets available in this newsletter, keep reading – Ed]

We are up to 308 members for the year. Not far from our total last year with 5 months left in 2019. Still, I was approached last weekend by a prior member who was flying wearing a 2018 badge who then asked for a gate key while claiming his badge had not expired because the AMA expiration date on the bottom had not arrived. For those that missed it, ALL 2018 memberships expired on December 31st no matter when your AMA membership expired. Club memberships are year to year, and do not include any portion of the following year – no matter when purchased.

I would like to thank the members that have been providing interesting submissions and articles to our editor, Steve for inclusion in our newsletter. Some really neat stuff has been popping up! Also, Here is another plug for members to start using the FOR SALE section of our web site. There has been some great items at reasonable prices posted, so if you are looking, please look here – you may find what you need. If you are selling, send your submission with a picture or two to our editor at editor@sefsd.org and he will post them.  Thanks Steve!

We are still in need of chairs to get us through the rest of the year. If you recently replaced your lawn furniture, please think of bringing your used items down if it will still support rear ends. If you know someone getting their carpet replaced, we could also use the old carpet, and they would save the disposal fees ( no pad please! )

To close out, Saturday the 22nd will be our Fun Fly and club meeting at the field. This will be our second bomb drop of the year, A favorite that anyone who has Soloed can play, and sometimes there is excitement when the pilot watches the bomb instead of the plane. Shifting things up a bit, Jim will be buying a couple of 5 foot subway sandwiches for lunch, which will be served by Lisa and Mark after the meeting.

Hope to see you all at the meeting, AND on the 4th of July at the field!!

The President’s Corner for June/July 2019

Hey pilots,

This month I would like to start off with the big news that everyone is talking about and that is the FAA flying field blue dot marker for our field. Yes we are able to fly in the interim until we are in compliance. That said, there are things that each member can do to help us keep our field open. The best ways are to comply with AMA and SEFSD rules and park regulations. Stay within these parameters so we do not give the wrong impression while we are getting our papers in order. I know it’s a challenging time for our club. Please be mindful of what and where you are doing your hobby. Any extra scrutiny at this time could be detrimental. Full size aircraft always have the right of way, when they are in sight please fly below 100’ or land, we don’t want or need them calling the tower and give them reasons to close down our site.

Now for the 4th of July celebration, we would like to remind everyone this will be a closed gate day. Remember to close the gate behind you, there will be a lot of nonmembers trying to access our site on that day. We have a great assortment of raffle prizes this year, about $1500 worth, so buy a lot and buy often. We have reserved the same food truck as last year to serve lunch again this year. You can bring you our grill for dinner. Gas BBQ grills only. If you want to cook out you can. What you bring in you bring out. Try not to overwhelm the park staff with tons of trash. Remember have fun and enjoy the festivities.

We are still on schedule to have tables replaced. Please don’t sit on the tables, some are on their last legs and it would be a shame for anyone to fall due to the table being not sound. Also the flying surface is holding up well, we will monitor and make a determination and when it gets to a point of disorder we will roll it and get it back in shape.

As always I appreciate everyone of you. with out you this club would not be so amazing. Keep up the good work and see you at the field.

Tony Blackhurst.

Chairman’s Corner for May/June 2019

Well, we keep having our events rained out… Quite unusual for May! Thanks to all of you for staying off of the field when muddy. Footprints made this time of year are usually still visible in September. The flora growth in the field area is still advancing and I want to say a BIG “Thank You!” to Dennis La Berge and Jim Bonnardel for their efforts in keeping the runway clear. The extra growth means we still have people wandering across the runway to look at the “pretty flowers” AKA weeds. Please try to be aware of them. One nice thing with the late rains is the field is in great condition and we can save the wet down/roll for maybe August!

Recently the FAA sent preliminary guidance on the use hobby type unmanned aircraft. This is in response to the large number of events in the last few years of people violating restricted airspace around the country. A couple of the BOD members along with Mark Davis and Jim Bonnardel have been communicating with the AMA Government rep and the FAA to ensure we are taking the correct actions to keep our flying site safe. In the interim, I ask that all of you follow current AMA directives and register with the AMA – then place your registration number on each aircraft in a visible location. Also, we need to re-double our efforts in reducing reports to the tower of aircraft above our altitude limit. Please restrict up lines to 400 feet or less, and for the foreseeable future it may be a good idea to have a “calibrated eye” when electroglide is underway to tell pilots not to climb higher.

There was some discussion at the last BOD meeting about the yellow rock at the east end of the runway. It seems that some folks have been using it as a target instead as a centerline reference and have been hitting it. When Jeff re-paints the event target at the center of the field, we are going to try a centerline and see if that works better.

We have had issues again with folks leaving the gate and the Porta Potty open. PLEASE take a few moments and lock the gate if you are the last one out! If there are one or two cars on-site, ask them if they are members. If not, let them know you are locking up and they should leave. If there are empty vehicles, lock them in! People donated new chairs about a month ago, and they are all gone already – LOCK the gate.  We have keys for sale again, if you need one approach a board member for info. If you are standing right there and want to let a non-member use the toilet, that’s ok- but please wait and ensure it’s locked when they finish. Don’t just leave it open. It will get vandalized, all of the paper thrown down the hole, or the lock thrown into the field. That being said, we are in need of more chairs again due to theft/vandalism. If you are replacing yard furniture (or carpet) please bring your old (unbroken) items down instead of tossing them out.

There was a recent incident at the field where a spectator was injured by an out of control airplane. This is the exact reason we have AMA insurance coverage. I appreciate the folks that jumped in to provide comfort and first aid to the individual. Remember, sometimes it is preferable to let an unmanageable plane go down in the field, or behind the vehicles in the lot rather than try to get it back to the runway over people’s heads. If you are involved in an incident, please get the individuals name and phone number to pass on to the BOD for follow up.

George Sullivan has started selling tickets for the 4th of July Raffle.[See below] You can also buy tickets from board members. Remember this one is where we get the funds to support the holiday banquet in January, so if you enjoy the banquet with your family, I encourage you to enjoy the Raffle! We already have some great stuff donated by Steve Neu and Bob Stinson with more to come! We will announce the prizes as they finalize.

Assuming the field dries out in time, we will be having Jet Day on Saturday the 25th. Bring them if you got them! Between 10 AM and Noon the main runway will be reserved for jets only. Carl and Eric are making a plan on how to award the monthly prizes. Following the fun fly there will be a club meeting at the field and the customary hot dog lunch. Hope to see you there!!

Brad

Tony’s Corner for May/June 2019

Hey pilots,

Another month is in the books. I will start off by saying we unfortunately had an incident on Saturday the 18th. A spectator who was enjoying our hobby was struck in the hand and cut a couple times. The plane was out of control and ended up over the pits. “Heads up” was called out multiple times and most were aware that there was a plane out of control. As the pilot struggled to get it back to the field. He was able to make it just over the fence where the gentleman was standing. As the plane crashed down it struck his hand cutting a couple fingers. I’m proud our members jumped into action to get the bleeding to stop. At that point the man and his friends said they would be taking him to the ER to get a professional assessment. They left so quickly we were not able to get pertinent info. So this brings up a good point; when we have an incident, we need to get some basic info: who, what, when & where. If there is an incident we can provide it to the AMA for insurance claim purposes. That’s why we carry it. So please keep this in mind when we do have something happen. 
We are starting to prepare for our forth of July celebration. We have started to sell raffle tickets for our 4th raffle. We will have a great assortment of prizes. As always, it will be a members only, closed gate event. Fireworks are at sundown so plan accordingly. Traffic on that day can be hectic so please stay calm and give yourself plenty of time to get where you are going. There will be more updates as we get closer to the 4th. 
We do plan on rolling the field near the end of June and getting a couple tables replaced this year. As you may have noticed, some are falling apart. With that please don’t sit on top of the tables, they aren’t able to hold that kind of weight over and over. I would hate to pick someone off the ground after a table giving way under them. So please be safe. 
And as always, you are the backbone of the club and I’m proud to help guide this club with great members to be the best club we can. I appreciate all of you for being great members that look out for each other and always have fun flying. 

Yours,

Tony Blackhurst. 

Tony’s Corner for April/May 2019

Hey pilots,

Another great month of flying has passed. I would like to remind everyone that this time of year we have shifting winds from east to west, so please fly the appropriate pattern. We have a new wind sock up so determining witch way the wind is coming from shouldn’t be too difficult. If you’re not comfortable looking at the wind sock during flight, then fly the same pattern as everyone else flying. We had a mid-air crash last week. There were only 2 pilots in the air and they were flying opposing patterns which is exciting, dangerous and expensive. Please be mindful of your fellow pilots and which direction the pattern is. Ultimately it’s your responsibility to keep your flight uneventful. 
Just a friendly reminder to close and lock the gate when you are the last one leaving the site. We had a couple individuals try to use our site as a dumping ground. Fortunately, we did have a responsible member address the situation and the situation was cleared up with no incident.

Secondly, we had a member flying his quadcopter out of bounds, this is unacceptable. The flying boundaries at our site are to keep the public safe and also to give us a place to do what we like to do, and that’s fly RC. The member has been identified and if this continues we will have no other recourse than to suspend or terminate membership. As a club member you should know better than to fly out of bounds. We will not let the selfishness of one individual jeopardize a club of 300 that do fly within our boundaries. There are a lot of other places around the county if you want to go fly with no limits. Due to the proximity to the airport our site has limits. Please be respectful of your fellow pilots and fly within our boundaries. Don’t be that guy that has the club shut down because you wanted to fly out of bounds. 

I respect and appreciate all of you and I wanted to thank all of you for a relatively drama free club. I look forward to continuing this great trend we have. I hope next month will be just as fun flying as this last one.  

Tony Blackhurst.

Chairman’s Corner for March/April 2019

Well, we finally managed a few decently dry weeks. I believe we were all ready! Last weekend every table was full both Saturday and Sunday! With that many fliers at the field, there was bound to be a couple of “Whammies” and while I hate to see a plane go down, the pilots were in good spirits just being at the field for a change.

The recent rains have started a weed explosion in the outer field area. This will bring hundreds of people out in the next few weeks to take pictures with the “flowers”. Please do not harass them, and please stay well away from them with your flying machines – both fixed and rotary winged. Dennis has been doing manual weed control ( THANKS DENNIS!! ), and Jim has been using the approved herbicide to keep the weeds from encroaching on the field and pit area. Please give them space while working as we appreciate their volunteer activities.

With the accelerated growth in the field, we can expect a higher risk as the year progresses. Last weekend a couple of people were showing off their extinguishers with pride until I pointed out that the gage indicated no pressure. Please take a look at your safety gear and ensure it is in the condition you expect.

The field itself is in good, compact condition. I am going to call another sweep day on the 23rd in an attempt to get the sand off. Our last couple of attempts were thwarted by the rain and wet sand. Please bring a broom and maybe a few folks can bring shovels and we will make the field even better. I am still asking all pilots that belly land to remove all skegs/pins/protrusions from the bottom of their planes to keep from busting up the nice surface. Most of you have removed these items, but if you are approached and asked, please understand that we are looking out for the continued enjoyment of us all.

On February 25th the new FAA Interim Final Rule went into effect requiring all drone and model airplane pilots to register ( if they had not previously ) with the FAA at https://faadronezone.faa.gov/#  and to display their registration number visibly on the exterior of all of their aircraft. If you registered in 2015, and did not ask for a refund when offered, that number is good until 2020. New registration costs $5.00 and is good for 3 years. The AMA is onboard with this requirement.

Some of you know that Carlos Mercado suffered a work related injury last month. I went to visit him a few weekends ago along with Frank and Alex Sutton to give him a get well card and a framed Photo that Frank had provided. Carlos is in good spirits considering his injury, and his doctors have reason to believe he will make nearly a full recovery. His family is starting a GOFUNDME page in the hopes to assist with some of his medical requirements and I will forward that information when it comes to me.

My monthly statements:

Always Lock the gate upon exiting if you are the last member on site.

Fly the prevailing pattern – if you don’t know – ask!

Look both ways and loudly call out when stepping onto the runway for any reason.

We are always in need of plastic chairs and used carpet on site.

This month’s Fun Fly event will be the POKER FLY. Expect to sweep the field around 9:30, Fun fly starts at 10:00 and club meeting followed by hot dog lunch before 12:00.  Have a great month!

Brad

Brad’s Corner for Nov/Dec 2017

To begin, I would like to mention that we are moving this month’s meeting/board member voting from our usual fourth Saturday to Saturday the 18th to avoid conflict with Thanksgiving holiday travel. We will have the meeting/voting around noon with pizza provided by the club for attendees. Jim has sent out absentee ballots for those that cannot attend, please ensure that if you do vote absentee – you fill in your full name as it appears on your membership card. If we can’t verify that you are a member, your ballot will not be counted. No cemetery voters please…
Finally, it has cooled off a bit! It is crazy that we had to wait until November to get a break this year. Still waiting for some rain to smooth the field out and reduce the risk of fire at our site. We really haven’t had many fires this year, and I want to thank all of you for being careful and having your extinguishers ready as needed.
Jim and Dennis have started replacing the worst of the tables at the main runway. Please throw them a thank you for giving up a few flying days to work for us instead. They started with the worst four and will continue into next year as the existing tables give out. Not bad, we have nearly 4 years on tables we expected to last one.
 A reminder on etiquette at the field, safety concerns, and just plain common sense: In the last 2 weeks I have observed folks walking out past the fence without letting other pilots know they were stepping out. Please call loudly, there were a few VERY near misses! Also, please look and verify no one is on approach before loudly announcing take-off and landing. Also judge the point at which you call your landings, calling too early can leave others stranded with low batteries waiting for a landing that should have been called thirty seconds later. Finally, after landing, if you taxi – please do so near the fence to reduce risk of others coming in after you.
One of our club members, Butch Bucciarelli, heard my call in September that we were looking for a venue to have our Holiday banquet in Jan. He came through for us in a big way, and our Banquet Committee ( Randy and Quan ) are finalizing the details. It sounds AMAZING!  Plan for a blast to all 2017 members to come out in early December with all of the info. Details will not make the web page or be posted to Facebook ( Pictures will post AFTER the event) to avoid the party crashers/freeloaders as we experienced the last 2 years. If you are a member, and do not get the club e-mails, email your friendly editor and he will make sure you get yours:  editor@sefsd.org
As I look over the newsletter for the last few months, I notice a great amount of content provided by members. Thank all of you that have hopped on board! Steve Belknap has been doing a great job of putting it all together for us, and it makes his life a bit easier if he does not have to search for all of the content himself. If you have a neat project, please share!
The Board has voted on and approved a small increase in membership dues starting 2018. Dues will go up to $50.00 a year when we start accepting 2018 applications next month. The club costs have been going up over the last few years and this will allow us to keep even. One exciting thing you will see next year is a new style of badge we will be issuing to take some of the load from the membership coordinator – THANKS GEORGE SULLIVAN! We failed to realize how much of a load we had put on Isabel as we took the club from two hundred to four hundred members. Thanks again to Paul and Isabel Guidice for the service to the club for the last seven years.
Please join us on Saturday for the meeting and vote. If you want to give back to the hobby you enjoy, I greatly encourage each of you to spend a bit of time on the board so we can all benefit from your ideas and experiences.
Have a great Thanksgiving, and please be safe. I think I saw a video on YouTube of Skip trying to deep fry a turkey. It was scary! I will be having ham now…
Brad
 
Jose
Eric
Quan

Brad’s Corner for Oct./Nov. 2017

I open this month’s newsletter with some sad news.

 

Last week our official Candy Man and unofficial club greeter, Fred Duffy, passed away. Fred was a welcoming member of our weekend crew over the last several years. 50-60 of our newest members thanked Fred for his approachability, and willingness to help a new guy out. Fred passed following a brief illness the morning of the 17th. He was where he wanted to be – At home with his loving Family. Freds son, Mike, has expressed his gratitude for the supportive texts, mails, and comments I have passed to him. Freds home life was very private and Mike said there will not be an open service per Freds wishes. The family will commemorate his life and their Mothers life together in private at a future date. We will miss Fred, and will do something to remember him on Veterans Day – November 11th. Mike will take a few weeks off, but we hope to see him back out at the field when affairs are in order.

 

Fred & Mike

 

As we approach the end of the calendar year we have finished up our monthly event series – Popwing races, Electroglide, and Multirotor FPV racing. If you would like to propose an event for next year, or run one of the current events, please let Jim or myself know.

 

I have been seeing quite a few damaged items stacked next to the garbage cans the last few weeks. Please, if you brought it to the field, and it is too big to fit into a can, please bring it out with you and dispose of it elsewhere. Do not leave it for the park folks to haul away. Also, the buckets of sand are for dumping over a battery fire, not a place to leave bad batteries for someone else to take care of.

 

We are less than 2 weeks away from the end of daylight savings time for 2017, have you been getting your night flyers ready?

 

Last week I opened nominations for the board of directors for 2018. There have been a few nominations, but I am still looking for some folks to step up and share your unique ideas while helping guide the club into the New Year. To reiterate what I said last week:

 

Any position currently occupied is open for competition.  Specifically, positions we need filled for 2018 are:

 

President – I expect to step away from the seat, which will automatically make me chairman for up to 2 years.

 

Vice President – Jim plans to run for a member at large position. He will still be involved, but life priorities require that he concentrate on other activities.

 

Treasurer – Paul has decided to end his service to the club and devote some time to just flying and enjoying his membership.

 

Safety Officer – I am trying to convince Randy to take the position from either Jim or myself.

 

Secretary – I am also sweet talking Quan…

 

Also, the 3 at large positions are always open for competition, I would like our current folks in these positions to move up.

 

Nominations received so far:

 

Secretary – Ken Dresser

 

Members at large – Ken Dresser, Steve Neu, Carl Cox, Jim Bonnardel, and Tony Blackhurst.

 

I continue to enjoy reading the submissions from club members on their special projects, and anything else related to our activities they may have seen or done. Keep it up!

 

This month’s event on the 28th will be a new one, MAMBA BABY! HOW LOW CAN YOU GO!!  Followed by the club meeting and lunch. This one should be a lot of fun.

 

Have a happy Halloween folks!

Brad’s Corner for Sep/Oct 2017

BradHey Team!
As this newsletter comes out we will be officially ending the last week of summer. Finally! It has been a hot and nasty one, That’s for sure.
To start off, I would like to thank the folks who participated on our Labor Day Raffle. We made some great progress towards funding our holiday banquet! The raffle was a lot of fun, with a slew of great prizes, and Subway sandwiches served by Julie and Joe Bonnardel. I would also like to say “thanks!” to the folks who donated prizes to the raffle, the items were really appreciated. Randy Wynant and Quan Nguyen have started looking for a venue for the banquet. If you know of a nice indoor location that can handle 130-140 people at a reasonable price, please let them know and we will look into it.
I want to say to all that I really appreciate the efforts most of you make to keep our club drama free. I hear often from other local clubs on how hard it is to keep the peace at their sites. With that being said, I would like to reiterate some things to the few people that want to push the boundaries… First, some basics. Please give each other the courtesy of loudly announcing your intentions to take off, land, or cross the field. DON’T say it only to yourself, say it so others can hear. To continue this thought, announcing this action does not alleviate your responsibility to turn your head and visually verify you are in the clear to proceed with your action. If you are doing multiple touch and go landings, you must announce EACH landing approach so others know what you are doing. The flip side is the folks who announce “On the runway.”  Then step out without turning their head to see if the runway is actually clear. There were a few near misses last month that could have easily been avoided.
There are also a couple of folks that are always flying opposite pattern, or straight up through the pattern as if there are no other planes in the air. This results in angry people staying on the ground instead of risking their craft by flying with someone acting like a fool. Please share our site with others respectfully. If you must fly like a clown, I hear the Chollas park guys are having a membership drive… To everyone else, feel free to say something to the folks that are not considerate to others. If you say nothing they assume it is ok. If you wait until later and send me an e-mail – they assume it is ok. I will rarely send a message to desist on something I did not actually see myself.
Moving on,
Last month’s newsletter had some great input from members and was a great read. Again, our editor Steve Belknap works hard to give you quality, but input from members on projects, shop tricks, and experiences are the icing on the cake. Keep those submissions coming!!
We are almost at 400 members as we enter the last quarter of 2017. A few less than last year, but not by much. We are still looking for current membership badges to fly at the club. I always like to state this time of year that our club still has great value – even at the end of the year, and most other clubs within an hour of us charge more than $15 bucks a month plus initiation fees to boot.
 Thanks to the folks that brought brooms and shovels to the last meeting day on the field. We were able to remove a lot of the sand and dust that had lifted from the surface and distribute it into the field. Jim is on the waiting list for rental of the water truck, but will be wetting the field prior to the end of the month. We expect this round of field maintenance to take us to the end of the year.
October will mark the end of the event series we hold on Saturdays. Pop wing racing, Electroglide, and FPV racing will wrap up and start anew in January. There is some tight competition for the top spots so make sure you don’t miss out!
We are a month away from nominations for 2018 board of directors, with voting happening at the November meeting which will be held on the 18th to get ahead of Thanksgiving.
 Board members that currently plan to leave their current positions are: Myself, I intend to vacate the President seat, which will automatically move me to the Chairman position – still involved, but with a different role.  ; Jim Bonnardel intends to step back from the Vice President position into one of the Member At Large positions to allow him to concentrate on other endeavors. Again, still involved, but with different responsibilities. ; Paul Guidice has decided to vacate the Treasurer position to enjoy some long anticipated travel with his Wife Isabel. This means we will also lose Isabel as our membership coordinator.
The President, Vice President, and Treasurer are positions that require a vote to occupy. The membership coordinator however, does not and can be appointed at any time. While it was handy for Paul and Isabel, the treasurer and membership person does not have to be a husband and wife team. With that being said, I am putting out a call for any member that would like to be involved without taking an actual board position, and understands how to use/manage spreadsheets. The membership coordinator could expect to spend 2 to 3 hours per week managing applications and mailing badges. Is this you? I need someone to take this position quickly, so they can spend some time with Isabel learning the ropes before we start the new year.
For the board positions, I again ask you to look inside yourself, ask the question of yourself on whether your skills, experiences, and qualities would make you the person to advance our club to new heights. Don’t think about what a few hours a month would affect you, instead think about the ways YOU could improve the experience of everyone in the club.

With the Hepatitis A outbreak in San Diego County, I would like to raise awareness that we routinely have homeless folks using our facilities. With that in mind, Paul strongly recommends to all members that they buy and bring a quality hand sanitizer with them for those occasions when the water tank in the porta potty is empty.
There are some really neat items on the sites For Sale tab. Make sure you take a look.
 This month’s meeting is on the 23rd, and the fun fly event will be “ Don’t Spill the Beans”. Any member can play, and get a chance at $150.00 in cash prizes! Following the fun fly will be the monthly meeting followed by our hot dog lunch. Staying with the Bean theme, Jimmy is trying to convince me to make a pot of Chili…
See you there!
Brad

 

Field Sweep

Brad’s Corner for August/September 2017

BradHey Fliers!

 

We had a cooler week or two recently with agreeable winds, and I hope you had a chance to take advantage and get some flying in. It will be warming up again this weekend, presumably through September so I will re-visit things mentioned in previous letters. Please bring plenty of liquids and stay hydrated! A couple of guys seem to bring water for their dogs, but none for themselves. Sunscreen is your friend, I have heard a couple of folks talking about having small melanomas removed this summer -that can lead to deeper issues. Fire safety is still a big concern, I appreciate that I have seen members walking to mishap areas carrying extinguishers. If it is a fairly good hit – just bring one. It is easier than having to run back. There is still some aggressive pollen on the dry weeds in the outlying areas. I am not normally allergic, but still have blisters (healing) on my legs after walking out to look for a small helicopter 3 weeks ago. There is still a possibility of snakes in the field. Please be careful!

 

We are around 390 members finishing August, pretty close to where we were last year at this time. If you haven’t renewed yet, please get it done. There is no advantage in waiting, and you may be discovered and not get to participate in an event or two. The yearly dues are the most economical in the county if you take into account the fact that no one is charged an “initiation” fee. I still see folks at the rotor plex wearing badges from 2016, and while I like members that wear badges, they have to be current.  I do anticipate dues to go up slightly next year to keep up with higher costs to maintain the porta-potty and our event support systems such as flags and banners, race gates, power systems, and materials to roll/wet the field. The City has stated there may be an increase in rental cost for the site, but has not been specific yet, so we will adjust as necessary.  I am still seeing new faces at the field and again would like to thank all of you for the welcoming attitude you present to the public. You are the reason we are one of the largest clubs in the AMA. Please feel free to chat with new members about safety at our site, if you see an unsafe action, please step up and discuss it, do not wait to tell a board member.

 

The last few years we have been able to plan and execute our end of year banquets using mostly funds raised outside of membership dues. While our “ambassador of fun” Jim Bonnardel has been bringing money into the club from sources wishing to use our facility, we have not seen the income we have been used to that was based around the rotor plex area. We are about two thirds of the way to our goal of having another great banquet this year. With that in mind we will be having a club raffle on September 4th – Labor Day as a banquet fundraiser. I am selling tickets at the field on weekends for $2.00 each. The same price if you purchase one or fifty tickets. If I don’t approach you, feel free to approach me for your tickets. Since I know quite a few are primarily weekday flyers, I will be accepting ticket purchases via PayPal to bradley.bender@cox.net . Please ensure you use the “Family or friends” option to send funds and put your full name in the comments block if your e-mail name is not your actual name. Last year I had to decipher: SKIPDUDE@WHOSYOURDADDY…  If you purchase via PayPal, I will write the name you provide on the back of each ticket. You do not have to be present to win. Jim is still purchasing items for raffle, but I can say we expect prize value to be over $2500 dollars. There are quite a few items donated by members (NIB ARFs, unflown receiver ready planes, and new general use items) along with new items being purchased. If everyone that attended last year’s banquet purchases 10 tickets – we will be fully funded. If we don’t make our goal, we may ask for a bit more to reserve seats this year.

 

I would like to plant a little bug in people’s minds early this year. In 2 months we will be opening nominations for board of director positions to take the club into 2018. From recent conversations I expect a one or two current members to step away from their positions to make room for new blood. Even if the position you think you would fit into is not vacated, feel free to run against the incumbent if you feel you have ideas to offer. I am going to challenge each of you to determine whether you feel your experiences, knowledge, and possible desire to change something you may not agree with is justification to run for a position.

 

Randy is still boxing it out with a local locksmith to get a new (and a spare) lock for our gate. It has been a great pain in his neck, so I am glad I was able to voluntell him on to this assignment. He has taken it like a trooper! Our main goal is to get locks that match the keys that have been issued, hopefully by the end of the month. Thank him when you get the chance.

 

Please check out the for sale by members page, there are a couple of nice items on there. To get your items posted simply send a mail to our editor at editor@sefsd.org with a description of the item for sale and a couple of good pictures. The flip side of course, will be to let him know as items sell so he can remove them.

 

Our editor, Steve Belknap fills a volunteer position and devotes numerous hours to getting this newsletter out and managing our e-mail blasts and contact lists. Please thank him when you see him. He is constantly looking for aircraft related articles to put in the newsletter for our enjoyment. If you see/hear something neat, and feel like sharing – type something up and send it in, we want to hear from you! If you want pictures of your planes featured in our gallery, send them!

 

It has been quite a while since we have had measurable rain which results in our clay surface breaking up badly. This Saturday (Meeting and Fun Fly) I am asking all attendees to bring a large broom and pitch in sweeping the loose material away in preparation of wetting the field down around the end of the month. If all hands pitch in, it should only take around 30 minutes.

 

This month’s event will be spot landing (no Micro’s please) followed by the monthly meeting and lunch provided by the BOD. This is always a fun event and I encourage all to enjoy!

 

Stay Safe!

Brad

 

Mark's Biplane

Brad’s Corner for July/August 2017

Hi Folks!
I hope mid-summer is meeting your expectations. If your expectations have included heat, humidity, and crosswinds – it has been a spectacular month! Well, we knew it was coming, so all we can do is smile and wave. Some of us have been hiding in our air conditioned spaces, but I would like to throw a shout out to Tom, Tuan, and Brian who have been determinedly raising their proficiency in crosswind landings. Great job guys!
For my standard banging of the safety drum, I want to say thank you to the folks who are always on site with their fire extinguishers and ready to save us if things get out of hand. The entire outer field area is very dry and flammable. Please bring enough water to stay hydrated for your expected stay. You can re-fill empty bottles at the boat ramp if needed. Finally, it is not a bad idea to bring and use sunscreen this time of year. I saw Randy after a long Saturday, He looked like a red Papa Smurf…

Smurf

Jim has been spraying the field to keep weeds down lately, Thank you for not trying to get extra points by seeing how close you can get to him ( Skip!! ) while he is around the edge of the runway. Thanks also to Dennis for countless hours weed whacking, and Tom and Chief for keeping growth down around the tables. We have had a couple years of use from the tables at the main runway, and we know they are starting to wear. Between now and the end of the year we will change out the worst of the tables to something closer to what was installed at the rotorplex last year. Please do not hurry the demise of the current tables by picking holes into them or striking them with hammers.
As a group comprised mostly of grown-ups, I have to ask you all to take the initiative if you see something unsafe. You do not have to wait to tell a board member, or wait for someone to handle it. Please step up and say something, if you need back-up – ask another member to join you and you can both have the discussion. Jim and I saw some VERY unsafe actions at the rotorplex a few weeks back, and both approached from different directions to have a few words. I am positive we would have had the same response if we were not on the BOD. Please join us in keeping everyone safe!
We had a pretty decent showing for the festivities on the 4th, the evening cooled off nicely and some of the fireworks were visible this year through the smoke which plagued us the last couple of years by drifting right at us. Thank you to the folks that stayed into the evening for not leaving piles of trash in the pit area.
My last conversation with Isabel puts us around 360 members for 2017. A bit behind last year, but still growing. Thanks to everyone that has been stepping up to invite new people to join the club. Steve, Randy, and Fred have been going out of their way to answer questions.
The monthly meeting/fun fly/lunch on SEFSD is coming up on 7/22. This is our summer bomb drop event and is a lot of fun, which can be had by all levels of flyers. If you can take off, go to an approximate minimum altitude, and make an approach, you can play!  And win prizes!  But don’t forget to watch your plane!!  When we do the summer bomb drop, we change up lunch a bit by ordering a couple of large subway sandwiches, which will be served by Jim and his wonderful wife Julie.

 

Brad 3 pic

Bring brooms on Saturday. Most of you have noticed that the heat has not been friendly to the field. The clay has powdered in places and is mixed with sand. Before kicking off the fun fly event I would ask that folks bring a broom and we will spend 20-30 minutes sweeping the runway in preparation of Jim doing a 2 day mid-week dousing and rolling of the field. We want to get water down deep so the surface should last the remainder of the year. When Jim puts down the water, we will close the main runway to flying for 2 days so no one puts foot prints on it before it is dry.
See you Saturday and have fun!!
Brad

 

 

Brad’s Corner for June/July 2017

300XHey Folks!
 
We didn’t see much May Gray, or June Gloom this year, and now the summer heat is on us! Most important is to bring plenty of liquids with you when you come for a day of flying. Last summer we had a member nearly go into kidney failure because he simply wasn’t getting enough fluid. Sunscreen is also your friend!!  I am going to once again bang my drum about fire safety. The outlying field area is now extremely dry. A small fire can turn into a big problem very quickly! Thanks again to those people that keep their extinguishers handy and are not afraid to use them.  A few other things to think about: there is a lot of dried up pollen on the weeds at the moment. If you have allergic responses, please be careful. If you have trouble breathing after a walk in the field, please mention it to someone so we can, at a minimum, keep an eye on you – or call emergency responders if necessary. I walked out for my plane with Tom and Tuan almost 3 weeks ago and still have blisters on my lower legs from the pollen. Finally, with the recent heat comes the possibility of snakes. Watch your step and listen for indications. Most of all, BE SAFE!!
 
A couple of interesting items: We had a couple of people lose some large and expensive aircraft this month. Even though it still stings, I am going to mention the issues in hopes of you avoiding the same pitfalls. Richard lost his 105 inch Laser due to a propulsion failure. The post mortem indicated the possible failure point as the connectors in the wires between the ESC and the motor. At least one of the connectors was able to be pulled apart with little or no effort. As we move to higher amp systems there is quite a bit of current going through these wires and a good chance that your connectors are heating up. I have seen a motor connector on one of Scotts jets get so hot that it melted the solder out causing failure. This type of heat cycling can cause bullet connectors to loosen over time. With most of the available HV speed controllers, there is an option to reverse the motor using the software or programming card, so you don’t have to swap wires to get the direction you desire. In these instances it would be preferable to just solder direct and leave the bullet connectors off completely. If this is not an option, or you just cannot bring yourself to move away from your affair with connectors, Randy mentioned a good solution. After he verifies that his system is sound and turning the proper direction, he goes back over each connection with a high quality heat shrink to ensure they do not come apart. After all, our intent should be to make the system bullet proof instead of making it easier to move gear to a different plane after a crash… A week after Richards loss, I also lost a 105” Extra on its second flight due to what ultimately came down to me pushing to get a few flights on a new model – even though I knew there were some conflicts with the way my radio system was configured. There is a known ( not to me at the time ) issue when using Hitec 7950th HV series servos on Spektrum Powersafe receivers with unregulated 2 cell lipo batteries. I tried to work around the issue by using a much lower capacity 6v LIFE battery which made it through a gentle maiden flight, but couldn’t handle the load when I threw all 7 high draw digital servos quickly to their end points in a full power snap roll about 30 feet up from take- off. The receiver browned out and recovered, but the motor would not re-arm – so I lost a battle with altitude. I have since re-built, and maidened the replacement (Pictured above), but will take away an expensive lesson: There is always tomorrow to fly your plane. If something isn’t EXACTLY the way you expect, take it home in one piece and figure it out.
 
Randy also threw out another pearl of wisdom this month: “Don’t forget your HOLE.”
Your vent hole that is. Sometimes you need to be inventive in allowing cool air into your airframe, and allowing warm air to exit.  A good majority of us are using over 1200 watt power systems. Even if your system is 90% efficient, that means 120 watts of waste heat being generated. When was the last time you closed your 40 watt soldering iron in the palm of your hand? Heat is the enemy to the magnets in your motor, connectors, batteries, and your speed control. To keep everything operating trouble free – we need to ensure we keep things as cool as possible. An old rule of thumb is to have twice the area on the outlet side than the area of the inlet vents. This ensures good cooling flow without pressurizing your airframe and blowing your hatch off (Right Raphi?)
 

Scott

Due to lack of support from vendors, and life in general getting in the way, we were not able to pull together a solid raffle for the 4th of July. I still have and will hold the items that were donated, and we will attempt to have a good show for the next holiday – which will be Labor Day on 04 September. We have some banquet money in the coffers, and hope to fund the remainder for the banquet with this raffle.
 
Speaking of the 4th, we will again be expecting a full day of flying. The board will serve a hot dog lunch around noon with chips and soda. We cannot plan for the numbers of people, so it will be on a first come, first served basis. If you plan to stay all day, please bring picnic supplies and beverages with you. We will have the clubs small BBQ available, and one or two members have agreed to bring and share their personal GAS BBQs with people that want to bring a protein and cook on site. No Charcoal grills please. Also, as part of mission bay park- glass bottles are prohibited. If you bring an adult beverage, please fly responsibly. Feel free to bring family and friends. This is the perfect time to bring your night flyers and light up the sky prior to the fireworks. For those who have not seen the Sea world fireworks from our field, we have a perfect front row seat. And there is a pretty decent exit point using old Sea world drive to Friars road east and hooking up with interstate 8 in mission valley. We will probably leave the gate open until around 6:00 PM at which time we will close it and lock it to non-club members. Jim will again post the ‘Members Only” sign. Over the last couple of years there have been issues with inebriated revelers causing problems at our site and I want to minimize that chance. If you arrive and the gate is closed, feel free to open – pass through – and close/lock it behind you. I don’t want anyone to get into a physical alteration, so if it comes to that with someone trying to force their way in, just let them in. Please don’t get upset if you leave the gate open behind you and you are asked to go back and close it.
 
While on the subject of the gate, PLEASE close the gate if you are the last one out! Again there have been reports of members arriving in the afternoon to an open gate and non-members on site flying over Sea world drive and the marsh refuge area. Kind of hard to argue that it’s not us if they are standing on our site while doing stupid stuff…  Close the gate.

We had an issue last month on meeting day about the preparation of hot dogs for members. It involved comments, yelling, and hurt feelings. I proposed to the board during our recent meeting that we stop doing lunch altogether on meeting days. My feelings are that if my volunteers are getting yelled at, we don’t need to do it. I was voted down by others on the board, but to be frank – I will not tolerate further abuse to the folks cooking the dogs. If there is an issue, come to me.
 
This month’s event is Warbird Day starting at 10:00 AM on the 24th. Come show off your favorite bird for a chance at $150 in prizes! Club meeting and Costco hot dogs to follow.
 
Have a great month!
Brad