Monthly Archives: May 2011

15 posts

European Version of DBF


This translation by Carl W Murphy (former and future member of The San Diego Silent Fliers,  Civil Structural Engineer and flying enthusiast) was done as a hobby for the members of the club and,  in particular Steve Neu (of Neumotors) and the students he participated with,  for a similar event in The USA.  A complete conversion into a form indistinguishable from American English was avoided,  it takes longer (this isn’t a novel) and in the translators opinion detracts from the content.  The articles foreign origin,  including the,  for English,  non standard format,  should be clear.  This translation was far more difficult then others from the same magazine.

An Der Redaktion von FMT
Es ist der Übersetzer (selbst als Bauingenieur ausgebildet) bekannt das English immer öfter an Deutschen Unis befördert wird.  Leider werden für Lehrzwecke meistens Texte aus der Literatur verwendet,  die nicht fürs Beruflichemlebend maßgebend sind.  Einen Bitten daher,  die mitgefühlte an den Mitglieder der Verein weiter zu geben.  Bitte sei aufmerksam,  es ist in den Amerikanischem Form von English gesetzt,  und doch wurde die germanische Herkunft gehalten.  Auch,  die Ingenieurwesen war deutlich zu bemerken,  die Übersetzungen fordert mehr nachdenken als üblich.

To the Editors of FMT
It is known to the translator (himself educated as a Civil Engineer) that English is being encouraged at German Universities.  Unfortunately,  most of the time texts from literature are used that are hardly representative of what will be required in professional life.  Therefore;  A request that the attached be forwarded to the members of the club.  Please be aware that the translation was done into American English.  The engineering background was apparent,  the translation required more thought then usual.

From the section FMT Magazine;

Heavy Load–Lightweight Construction

Akamodell Stuttgart wins at the Air-Cargo-Challenge 2009

It was in fall of 2006 that the notice about the bi-annual Air-Cargo-Challenge came in (see the Internet  This competition was called into life 2003 by the APAE (Portuguese Association for Air and Space Travel).  (Get our former Portuguese Airline pilot turned Radio Controlled expert to lend a hand with the description)  The enthusiasts of the Akamodell quickly agreed and registered a team for the European Competition to take place in September 2007 in Lisbon.  With the “ACC Akut” the team was able on it’s first try to take second place,  they transported 6,2 kilos into the air.

The Challenge,…
…to do better the next time,  was of course already given!  2009 the winning team organized the next competition.  The new rules were slightly altered.  Instead of a maximum wing length of 1.6 meters the new requirement was a maximum wing area of 0.7 square meters.  In addition,  this time the aircraft was required to transport a box enclosing the dimensions 1.100 x 500 x 400 mm.  The other parameters of the competition were in principle the same.  A cargo load in the form of lead plates has to be transported after a take off roll of a maximum 60 meters from an asphalt runway.  Heavily loaded,  the airplane is required to fly at least one lap and land on a stretch of 120 m.  The required propulsion is an AXI 2820/10 electric motor,  powered by a maximum of 3 in series LiPo-,  LiFe-,  or Lilon-Cells.  To avoid torturing the motors the amperage is limited to 45 A,  that also evens out the odds.
In addition to transporting the cargo load there is an additional list of evaluation criteria.  For example:  Bonus points for quick loading.  Very important are the terminology and exact description of the development process and technical drawings that must be presented in a Design-Report.  A Fifteen minute presentation of the teams work is equally evaluated.

Laying out of the Model
After the first thinking it out only a standard single wing came into question.  Other variations such as flying wing or canard carry with them disadvantages for the required maximum lift.
The above already mentioned point of unlimited wingspan with a limited wing area lead to a relative demanding optimization problem.  The bigger the selected wing span,  the lower resistance,  which reduces the required performance for the flight.  At the same time the width of the wing is also reduced.  At the first look that only appears to be a disadvantage for the required structure assembly.
Considerable more critical is the required adaptation of the layout to the required high lift profile.  Since the achievable lift off velocity is low,  and so too the Reynolds Number,  which,  calculated from the wing width and speed (Re = U x t/v) is very low.  Underneath a particular Reynolds Number the lift drastically drops off while at the same time the drag increases dramatically.
In the end we dared to use a wingspan of 2.6 meters – a very wise compromise as it was demonstrated.

Selection of the Wing,  Airfoil and:  Fowler-Flaps
At the competition 2007 and currently in most airplanes the airfoil Selig S1223 is used.  It achieves a high lift coefficient of about 2.2 at low Reynolds Numbers and has proven itself.  To gain an advantage over the competition we needed to think through (dream up) something new.
Split flaps on the trailing edge (also known as Fowler-Flaps) are known from the commercial airplane sector. They are used during take off and landing to increase the lift.
The basis for their functioning is that as the air blows through the gap it recreates the boundary layer.  In this way a stall is prevented and the lift can be increased.  Of course it’s not that easy to define the airfoil and gap geometry.  The layout was made using the computer program MSES with repetitive iterations.  With the initial data an estimate could be made that by using the Fowler-Flaps an extra kilo of load could be carried.  The increase seemed to us to be rewarding and so we decided to venture into unknown territory.
There was some question if the calculations were not partially too optimistic or if special phenomena such as Hysterese-Schleifen (This term exceeds the translators knowledge,  it may mean an oscillating condition such as vortex shedding.  Although Schleifen most commonly means a ramp,  it can also mean a loop in programming terminology.  Hysterisis is also used in english,  most commonly for the physics of the cycle of magnetizing and demagnetizing a material,  it’s use is now becoming common in the description of why better motors are more efficient.) would make the airfoil useless for flying.  As part of University course work the practicality and achievability were thorough researched.  In numerous hours at the Institute for Aero and Gas Dynamic (IAG) Wind Canal for Models,  Andre` Zöbisch verified the airfoil combination.  The most important consideration was to find the optimum flap position.  Varying the location in the tenths of a millimeter range was enough to cause either a very hard stall,  or a soft breaking one.
The expectations of the airfoil were eventually completely realized,  it was capable of a Ca,max of 2.9 at Re=1.5 ex 5.  (Scientific Notation exceeds the translator’s word processor’s capability.)  In comparison with the S1223 that is an increase of 30%!

The Propulsion
Although the motor was specified,  the choice of propeller was any commercially available type.  To get out the most thrust we tested over 30 propellers in the middle IAG wind canal.  Thrust,  voltage,  current draw and RPM were tested at various approach speeds.  (The terminology exceeds the translators technical vocabulary.  The German language word describes the relative speed of the propeller to the incoming air.)  Favorites for our target amperage and speed range crystallized out as the Graupner G-Sonic 12 X 6 and APC Electro 13 X 4.

Completion of the “Heavy Heron”
In order to be able to build the desired airfoil to the required contour,  we decided to build using foam core (laminate over foam) construction.  Especially the sharply curved flaps would have otherwise been difficult to realize.  Since the typically used mould material would have exploded our budget the forms were realized in MDF.  In the end for the wing 12 different forms were required.  After a (unknown word that may mean foam cutting) treatment the MDF was sealed with glue and after hardening smoothed out.  After cleaning off the roughest parts filler was applied and then sanded.  By this means we achieved a surface sufficiently smooth for our application.
The material used for construction depended on load,  either carbon-  or fiberglass with 1 mm RHC reinforcement.  The fuselage,  that was also built in a form,  was made from carbon fiber cloth and (unknown word describing the nature of the carbon fiber layer).  Due to weight considerations the tail surfaces were built with normal balsa rib construction.
Just-in-time before the last possible first flight appointment adjustment stencils (this may be an industrial word for a positioning link construction with for which the translator has no reference,  the Germans often use phenolic for lightweight construction in radio controlled airplanes,  the parts look about like a stencil) for the flaps were milled according to the latest research from the wind canal.
The translator wishes to again note that this is a hobby translation and that while he is able to competently translate a hobby text,  that the engineering back ground of this article exceeds his experience,  sometimes in German and sometimes in English.  I built aircraft hydraulics out of metal,  composites and their industrial terminology are beyond my experience and are not included in easily available references.  If it’s that important contact the club for further explanation of the magazines content.

The First Fight
Only two days remained for us to tune the Heavy Heron and explore it’s potential.  Since a too low wing loading for such a heavy lift flier is not without danger,  we decided to load 3.8 kilos right from the start.  After a pair of roll tests the Heavy Heron lifted off after a few meters and climbed steeply into the Heavens!  Still somewhat soft on the controls,  but controllable,  the box flew like a big HLG.  You didn’t see the overall weight of 6 kilos,  not at all.  On approach the Flier fell through somewhat and the left landing strut broke on landing,  which hurried up further tests.  But,  at least we had made one fight and knew,  there was more to be had!  On the next day the payload was raised to 8 kilos,  before a too long take off roll ended in long grass.  But,  the capabilities were proven and the repairs quickly done.

The Competition
And so the team – consisting of Ruben Bühler,  Alexander Rautenberg,  Anton Streit,  Etienne Pudel,  Jonas Illg and Michael Abel – made their way Wednesday to Covilha (Portugal).  Thursday was completely used for completion of the presentation.  With that the team was able to point well on Friday and found itself in 3rd place out of 22 contestants,  a good starting position.
On Saturday it was off to the flying field.  The first test flight was exiting.  Several of the teams made the poker game stake too high and seriously damaged their airplanes by crashing them.  We started with what was,  for us,  a harmless 6.0 kilo load,  at which we realized that with the lower air density (a result of the altitude and hot outside temperature of 40 C) and the rough asphalt demanded their tribute.  For the first flight for points we went closer to the limit.  For 8.0 kilos the runway was about 10 cm too short.  But,  Alex landed the flier once again and on the second try inside the time limit he completed the flight with the Heavy Heron.  And with that the bar for the competitors was hung very high.
Sunday on the second try were a little more cautious at 8.2 kilos,  the flight was successful.  For the last try we were daring at 9 kilo.  The flight went perfect,  only the touch down was a few meters too early.  But since no other team came anywhere near 8 kilos the victory for us was safe.  In second place was The Akamodell Team München (6.09 kilo) leading ESTG Cargo 2 from Portugal (5.95 kilo).  And so a long project was successfully completed and the countless hours paid off.
Future prospects:  In 2001 The Stuttgart Akamodell and Euroavia will be the hosts of the Air-Cargo-Challenge.  We may be curious what innovations the teams prepare.

A Thanks To
The Akamodell-Team extends a heart felt thanks to the supporting institutions (Institute for Aerodynamik and Gasdynamik,  Institute for Raumfahrtsysteme) of The University Stuttgart.  The sponsors High-End-Engineering (HEE),  DMFV,  Lange & Ritter and Dremel are also expressly thanked.

Captions to the photos:

The inner construction of the wing middle parts.  Spar,  xxx (unknown), ribs and web pockets (webs) are clearly visible,  the carbon fiber fabric shins through.

The Heavy Heron being assembled for the competition in Portugal.

The Heavy Heron on approach.  Touching down must be done gently to avoid overloading the landing gear.

The in the medium wind canal measured propellers.  27 pictured

The wind canal model of the Fowler Airfoil for use in the Model-Wind-Canal of the Institute for Flight and Gas Dynamics (IAG).

The attachment of the linkages of the fowler flaps (in yellow) on the underside of the wings are clearly visible.  On the outside wing panel in front the flap is not yet mounted.

Extreme light weight construction fairing of the cargo bay.  The opening for the ballast is found at the rear (in the photo on the right).


2011 SDSU DBF Contest Report

Each year the rules are released sometime in mid-august (the rules can be read here), it is at this time that senior team members usually gather together and start assigning team leads, each team lead will be responsible for one specific aspect of the plane. It is at this time that we also start analyzing the competition scoring in order to determine what type of airplane will allow us to achieve the maximum score possible.

This year we decided to go with a flying wing as it can be seen from some preliminary CAD models seen below.


Preliminary CAD Model

Since the fall semester has already started at this time, it is not unusual to combine DBF with other school project in order to gather extra data about the airplane’s performance so that it can later be included in the report. After a few more design changes, we finally arrive at a prototype-ready model. It is at this time that we start building said prototype.

Building the prototype usually starts early December and continues throughout winter break. This year due to the simplicity of our design it was decided that instead of building the airplane from scratch, it would be easier to modify an existing flying wing. The wing cores are made of extended polypropylene (EPP), this would make the wing resistant to all the crashes that it would later experience when learning how to launch a flying wing.

Once we assembled the wing cores the payload space was dremeled out.


Creating Main Payload


Creating the main payload space


To prevent damage during crashes and to add some extra support, the plane was covered in a laminating film.


laminating film


Since this was only a prototype, not a lot of care was placed on the details so we ended up using a piece of coroplast as a lid.

Flight testing started sometime mid-January. The first couple of flights were troublesome because none of us had any experience with hand-launched planes. After a couple weeks of practice, however, we were able to perfect our throwing method.


Mastering the hand-launch


It took us a few weeks of test flying to gather all relevant data including flight performance with both payloads, as well as the empty flight.

With this data, coupled with advise given to us by our pilot as well as other advisors we decided to implement small changes, mainly in the area of structure.

After the flight testing phase was over, we spent the remaining time redesigning, building, and flight testing a new competition-ready airplane. Some of the changes that the new plane implemented were:

•    5 piece wing
•    Molded fiberglass hatch
•    Lighter winglets and elevons
•    Extra structure to prevent excessive wing deflection
•    14-cell battery pack

The final configuration was the following:

Weight: 4 ft
Airfoil: MH 64
Batteries: 14 Elite 1500 mAh NIMH
Receiver: HiTec Optima 6 Lite
Motor: MicroDan 2510-1600Kv
Speed Controller: Castle Creations Phoenix 45
Servos: HiTec HS-512MG
Radio: HiTec Aurora 9


Once at the competition we were able to get by tech inspection on the first attempt, this meant that we were able to fly the first mission on Friday. The first mission was a success and we were able to obtain the maximum score by completing 7 laps within the 4 minute time limit. A video of the first mission can be found here.


Landing after the completing mission 1


After seeing the plane perform the second mission we were excited to see it perform the other two. Saturday was supposed to be the day that we were supposed to complete the other two missions, however, we kept running into problems during the second mission.

Since we did not have the appropriate propeller we ended up using a propeller that was 1″ bigger, this in turn caused us to draw more current than the one allowed by the 20 Amp fuse thereby blowing the fuse and cutting off all power to our motor. The video of the second mission attempt is here.

For the second attempt at mission 2 we were able to modify a bigger propeller into the correct size, but the propeller was not attached correctly so the propeller flew off as soon as the throttle was increased.

On our last attempt at mission 2 we tried to get everything perfect, however, it seems that Murphy kept following us around, one of the bolts that held a wing attached to the center section was not fully tightened. The launch was perfect, however, on the downwind leg we started to get some flutter from the loose wing, this cause the other wing to become loose and ended up bringing the plane down. The crash might not have been spectacular, but the plane hit the ground with enough force to break apart a battery cell and leave a burn mark on the fiberglass hatch. The video for that flight is here.




Aftermath of the crash


We were only allowed 4 flight attempts to complete all 3 missions and we ended up using 3 of those on mission 2 (one for mission 1), so this meant that the competition was over for us.

In the end we ended up having to settle for 43rd place (results can be found here).


More competition pictures can be found in the following links:,

May Meeting

Club Meeting, Flight Demonstration and Food!!


The May meeting will be held the SEFSD Flying Field at Mission Bay, May 28, 10:00 AM.  Along with the usual exciting agenda items, there will be flight demonstrations from Frank Gagliardi’s Mini Ultra Stick Pylon group, plus Don Wemple will show us what he and his intrepid San Diego Electrogliders do when they get together.  If that isn’t enough to get you down to the field, we’ll have free food!  A complete lunch with hot dogs and more.  Imagine, free food and entertainment, heck bring the whole family.

Editor’s Notebook for May 25, 2011

5. The response I received from Senator Dianne Feinstein regarding the proposed FAA rules:


“Dear Mr. Belknap:

I received your letter opposing a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulation that would impose new restrictions on model aircraft operations. I appreciate the time you took to write and welcome the opportunity to respond.

Model aircraft serve many purposes, from recreational use among enthusiasts to important aeronautics research at universities. I have heard from thousands of model aircraft enthusiasts who share your concerns that new regulations will create unnecessary and burdensome restrictions on recreational model aviation.

On February 17, 2011, I supported an amendment offered by Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) to the “FAA Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act” (S. 223), that would exclude model aircraft from FAA rules or regulations the plane such meets the following criteria:

o It is flown strictly for recreational, sport, competition, or academic purposes;

o A community-based set of safety guidelines are observed when operating the aircraft;

o It is unmanned; and

o It does not exceed 55 pounds in weight unless otherwise certified through a community-based safety program.

This amendment was agreed to by unanimous consent in the Senate, and S. 223 was passed on February 17, 2011. A similar bill was passed by the House of Representatives, but it did not include the model aircraft provision. The two bills must be reconciled in conference before the President can sign in into law. I appreciate hearing your support for model aviation, and I will be sure to keep your comments in mind as Congress considers the FAA reauthorization.

Once again, thank you for writing. If you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.

Sincerely yours,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator”

Menifee Valley Float Fly

Please mention how much fun the Menifee Valley Flyers club is.  I attended a fun fly earlier this year in addition to the Float Fly and highly recommend participation in their events. The Float Fly drew about 20 planes and pilots from all over the southland. Well run and a joy.

Thanks again to the MVF for a wonderful event.


Ducted Fan Accident

He was rushed to the emergency room by ambulance where they did a emergency surgery on his eye. The surgery was two hours and the Dr. stated that his eye was severed in three places. The Doctor told me that his eye was cut into three pieces almost clear through the other side. He doesn’t know that I am posting this but, I know he considers you all, rc groups, his friends and would not want the same to happen to you. I have enclosed pictures and they are after the incident. The first picture is of his eye after they stitched it back up(the lines are the stitches). The second is what is left of the Jet motor that I found scattered across the floors and walls. The doctor said that the good news is that his eye is holding pressure(which means holding fluid that they had to put back in his eye) but can’t tell the outcome until a few months. So please, please, keep him in your prayers and that he has a full recovery!
Thank you and God Bless

Here is the thread on the whole thing.

Electroglide Report from 5/21/2011

Standard Class — Stock Radians



                             Toss 1      Toss 2      Toss 3      Toss 4      Total
Bob Anson                 52           31            49            21           153
Fred Daugherty        50 (10)    20 (10)       46            24          150
Don Wemple              36           33         50 (10)        15           134
Terry Thomann          31           21             41            36          129


Open Class — Other than Stock Radians


Bob Stinson            64 (20)       20           38        36 (20)       158
Jim Barnnardel          43           26           43            0            112
John Forester            9             0             0            15            24


Remember that we are having a demonstration Electroglide Saturday the 28th of May. This wll be in conjunction with the Club barbeque that same Saturday morning. This will be a grand cnance to show the Club how much fun the Electroglide is for all of us who have been involved with it for the past dozen years. The development of the Radian has been essential to the concept of the Electroglide — all pilots flying the same airfrome, motor, battery, and powerplant — truly creating a “Standard Class”…….and for under $150!!!! We have a safe, fun competition with 8 to 20 competitors, so let’s encourage our fellow Club members to join us. Be there this coming Saturday. Let’s Electroglide and then eat Hot Dogs!

First Toss –9:30!

Cool Videos for May

Both powered by Rolls Royce Merlin engines……which emitted that
wonderful sound that became known to many as ‘The Sound of Freedom’
during the 1940s. Mustang pilot does a great job staying on the Spit’s
wing, I’m guessing these 2 guys have flown form before!



Duxford Battle of Brittan Airshow Review:



Live video taken by one of the astronauts showing the inside of the International Space Station.  

It is spectacular!!When it starts up, change to full-screen mode by clicking on the little thingy on the bottom right of the panel that has two little arrows in it.

For about the first two-thirds of the tour, the astronaut doesn’t say anything.  When she gets to the exercise station, she starts explaining.  Be sure your sound is on.  She ends up in the incredible window pod looking out at the earth.  That’s worth sticking around for, believe me!!



RC SuperHeros:


Incidentally, kits and plans are here.

Minutes from April 23, 2011 Meeting



Precision Clinic was conducted by Tim Attaway, Pedro Brantuas, Steve Dente and Doug C. Tim gave a
presentation and then 3 individual club members received assistance in setting up their airplane for the
upcoming EMAC on May 7th. Remember, these same people will help you get your airplane set up
correctly any time you ask for help at the field.

Tim Attaway

The Next Big Thing-Step 5

My frustration started because everyone KNOWS you have to run this GUI in a Java environment before you can launch the program.  And everyone KNOWS you have to have a FDTI driver to interface the USB ports of the Arduino and computer. So basically, no Java and no driver and no go.

Huh? What are you TALKING about, you say?  Well, I have to admit to being pretty retarded when it comes to computers.  But, where there’s a will, there is a way” as they say, and so I have spent too many hours figuring this thing out because I really want to fly a tricopter.  So for those of us who are computer challenged, this installment might be just the article for you.

So here’s how I see it.  In the tricopter is a little silicon brain (called Arduino) that is the only chance of keeping this thing from snap rolling, into the ground instantly upon rising off of said ground.  The problem is, when you buy it, it’s brain-dead!  I’m not kidding!  On top of that, even when you jolt it to life with electricity the silly thing only understands Italian!  I’m not kidding!  So you have to buy a translator called an FTDI. I guess it’s an acronym, something like; F-or T-translating D-igital I-talian or something like that.  (I don’t know).  It seems that computers like Windows and Macintosh don’t speak digital Italian and need this silicon Rosetta Stone to work it out.  Problem is’ computer are dumb!  I’m not kidding!  If you don’t give them a “cheat sheet” they can’t figure out what to do with their silicon Rosetta Stone.  So you have to get a “driver”.  Now this is a good-news-bad-news sort of thing.  The good news is it’s free.  The bad news is you have to have a cheat sheet to download it.  I’m not kidding!  It was a painful, multistep process that had absolutely no intuitive steps involved.  Now, I can hear the howls and jeers of computer literates everywhere.  I can also hear the sympathetic murmurs from fellow computer illiterates.

OK, so now we have the Rosetta Stone and the computer and the silicon brain ready to talk to each other, but like I said before, it’s brain dead.  It needs a jolt of electricity from some electrodes.  This is called a USB cord.  This is the exciting part, the computer is ON: Check, the Rosetta Stone is plugged into the silicon brain: Check, the USB cord is plugged into the computer and energized: Check, now plug the other end into the tricopter and, and, and???  A couple of lousy little lights blink pathetically.  I’m not kidding!


What’s going on here?  Like I said, computers are dumb. The computer has nothing to say to it’s little Italian friend.  And the little Italian friend is just blinking it’s LED lights much like a “deer in the headlights”.  It is no longer brain dead but, as they say, “the lights are on, but no one’s home”.  So we have to give it a mission, a mission to fly a multicopter.  There is a bright young man with the internet name of “Alex in Paris” who has brilliantly written a computer program that fills up the little silicon brain with everything it needs to know to fly a tricopter.  Even more, it will be so smart as to be able to fly a quadrocopter and even a hexacopter!  Who’s the man?  Alex in Paris is the man!  And here’s a link to everything I have learned:


So now it’s just a couple of clicks of the mouse and…  Actually it’s a bunch of clicks, and waits, and questions of where to send this information so it does not get lost in the cyberspace of your computer hard drive.  And then you have to Un-Zip the files and put them somewhere else!  I’m not kidding!  But, being the old guy I am, I write all of this stuff down on a sheet a paper because I’m so dumb that I need a “cheat sheet” of my own!  Hey, you do what ya gotta do….

Now what?

Now, you have to go to the parents of the Arduino and ask them for the proper way to talk to their “baby” (baby my foot, it’s seeming more like a Spawn to me at this point….) This information has the innocuous name of “Down load the Arduino Software”.  You can find it here:


After about a billion more mouse clicks and cheat sheet notes I now have the Arduino program ready to talk to the little silicon brain which is connected to the Rosetta Stone which is connected via the electrode to the computer.  The next step is to send the “mission” to the Arduino software so it can send it to the Rosetta Stone so the little silicon brain knows what to do.  Oh wait, you have to send it to the software and THEN ask it to think about it for a while and decide if it’s appropriate for it little tyke. They call it “compiling” (I’ll tell you what I call it…….)

What’s this? The little tyke does not want to listen?  Oh yeah, the Rosetta Stone (FTDI chip USB converter) can only hear in one ear.  The computer calls it a COM Port and you have to tell the Arduino software which ear to whisper into. (mine was Com Port 3).  So, finally it’s done compiling and now I find out that Arduinos have about a dozen different siblings and you have to pick the right one out before it will go any further.  You DID write down the name didn’t you?  It will be something like: Arduino Pro mini (5V.16MHz) w/ATmega 328.  What?  It didn’t work?  What the..!?

Oh, now you have to ask the software if it’s OK to talk to the little Pro Mini on com port 3. And it compiles one more time.  I’ll be darned if it didn’t work!  Hallelujah! Now press the Upload button and: more blinking lights.  The software says something like: “Done Uploading”.  Believe it or not, this IS success.  I’m not kidding.

Now what?

Now you launch a GUI!  A GUI?  What in the heck is a GUI?  In this case it is a pretty computer screen with lots of colors and moving things and places to type in numbers and everything!  It’s the other really cool program Alex in Paris wrote and re-wrote and re- wrote a bunch more times until he really got it right.  Way to go Alex!).  Only problem is, it won’t start!  After wading through almost 1000 pages on R/C Groups I find out I need something called JAVA on my computer to make the GUI go good.  Here’s the R/C Groups link:


I am getting good at this downloading thing now and the Java installation goes without too much pain.  So I launch the GUI and now it works like a charm!  Now what?  That my friends, is a story for the next installment of: The Next Big Thing.

Until next month,

Rocket Bob Kreutzer


Check out this video of a similar aircraft:

2011’s First EMAC Results

Tim Attaway - Chairman for Fun


John Forrester


Dan Napier & Rob Anderson


Jeffrey Kuehn


Ron Scharck


Brian Letteri



Sportsman found Steve Neu returning after some time off and he handily won the class, followed by our score keeper  (VIP) Craig Hunter and Saad Attie cornered the third place position.  Five total competed in Sportsman…..a nice turn-out there too.


Steve Neu


Craig Hunter Keeping Score


Craig Hunter


Saad Atti with Tim Attaway & Mark Bidar


Steve Manganelli



Intermediate found Mike Eberle and Mark Bidar moving up to take on a bit more challenge in difficulty and Mike successfully kept his winning ways with first place.  Bruce Brown was, as usual, excellent  and placed second.  Mark  had not practiced too much but gave it a whirl and did fine in this new class.  Remember he took first place among 15 or so pilots at Prado last year in a full IMAC contest so watch out next time.


Mike Eberle


Mark Bidar


Bruce Brown



In the top class, Tim Attaway squeezed out a win by the barest of margins over Pedro and Steve Dente and Doug Chronkhite did a half of a contest until his wife called to remind him of a doctor’s appointment.  All were very close in the standings and it might have gone any way and it probably will next time.


Tim Attaway


Pedro Brantuas


Steve Dente


Doug Chronkhite



We are always looking for interested, even mildly interested,  people to join the fun;  remember it is just a one day contest, in town, takes about 5 hours and you fly the electric plane of your choice.  We are always ready to answer questions and help you with set up and even coach you to your best performance.  See the results in the pull down menu and plan now to get out there for the next contest on June 18th.  Don’t forget  also, that before that EMAC on the 18th is a real IMAC contest being held at Miramar RC Flyers field right here in town on June 11 and 12th…….come and watch or join the fun.
Tim Attaway, regional director of IMAC and chairman for fun 2011.


Steve & Tim

MUStick Race Report 4-30-11

One BIG change will be the new Pilot/Caller score sheet.  Please make some copies of it, study it and be ready to use it at the next race on June 25th , hosted by the First Weedwacker Squadron.  IMPORTANT: Please follow the Weedwacker Li-Po Charging Policy.  Directions to the field will be coming soon.  I plan to “massage” the flight course at the SEFSD field a little more to keep us a safe distance from the active runway and pit area.  I know that in the heat of the moment we can easily find ourselves in an unsafe area and only realize it when it’s too late, especially when it’s your first time at a new field and RACING!  SAFETY IS PARAMOUNT!

May 28th is a ‘demo’ race at the SEFSD field for Sticks and T-28’s.  Steve Belknap will be the race director for that event.  Until then…….Practice, Practice, Practice and………………………..

Go Fast/Turn Left


MUStick Group 4/30/11