Daily Archives: March 21, 2019

18 posts

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!


President’s Corner for March/April 2019

Hey Pilots, 

Another great month of flying down. The weather is more accommodating and looks to be done with rain for the season. So a big thank you to all for staying off the field when it did rain. Your efforts helped to maintain a solid flying surface. We are planing to have another sweep day this month to get the last of the sand and loose rocks off the top. 
We are currently at 275 members which is just a few less than this time last year. We thank you for being a key part of our club. Without you this club wouldn’t be as great as it is. 
We are getting more keys made. So if you are a new member and don’t have a key yet, or lost your key, they will be available for 3$ each. Also, the gate is to be closed by the last member leaving. It helps to keep the non-authorized people off our site. As most of you know we have had some vandalism in the past few months. Most recently the lock on the porta potty was Broken off. I know we can’t keep everyone out, but keeping the gate closed will greatly decrease the amount of vandalism. We will be adding a sign at the gate to remind us all to close the gate when you are the last to leave the site. 
As we start heading into the warmer months of summer please remember to bring water with you, dehydration can be a very serious event.  Having drinking water with you will keep you safe from a potential problem. Also, sunscreen is a good idea when spending time out in our field. 
Last but not least our field will be drying out over the next few months. So please bring a fire extinguisher and have it readily available for the unforeseen event that will require one. The best defense is a good offense. So think proactively about what could happen and be prepared for anything. Fire extinguishers are a great way to keep a crash form becoming a bigger issue. 
And remember the most important thing Have a great time flying. 
Respectfully yours
Tony Blackhurst. 

A Visit With Carlos

Brad and his wife arrived at Carlos’ home before Alex and I, and we had a very good visit with Carlos and his family. He sure was happy to see us, and it was very good to see him as well! He’s looking forward to his last surgery to attach a lens to his left eye, and then it may take up to a year or more before doctors expect he will hopefully make a full recovery and be able to see with that eye again. It is always amazing to me these advances in medical science!
  Carlos said he was tired of staying home and doing nothing other than eating and sleeping, he thought he was gaining weight (he’s as slim as a rail! Ha!). He’s looking forward to being able to go back to work again and of course, he’s very much looking forward to flying again with SESFSD!
  We all talked about RC flying and a lot of other things as well. He hopes to return to the runway, at least as an observer, in a couple more months or so he said, but he’s really wanting to get behind the transmitter and fly again! We told him everyone’s been like that lately because so far he hasn’t missed much flying due to all the rain we’ve been getting!
  Brad talked with him and his family about setting up a “GOFUNDME” page so we may contribute some $$ for him and his family to help out financially, and they promised to do so and let Brad know when it was ready. I’m not sure how long Brad and his wife were there before us, but Alex and I were there with all of them for nearly an hour. Before we left, I asked Carlos if I could take a photo for SEFSD and that photo is attached. 
  Carlos and his family were sincerely appreciative of SEFSD’s concern and wishes for his full and rapid recovery, and he misses everyone too!
Frank and Alex Sutton

An MQ-9 Story – pt. 2

By Bob Kreutzer

[This is the second installment in Bob’s series on his MQ-9 project.  Click here for part one.]

Several years ago I inherited a Pro Jet MQ-9 kit. As it was not my first choice for a kit build I put it in storage for a later date. That date has come and I thought I might share some of the adventure. To begin with, the model and the full sized aircraft are well, different. Let’s just say it is Stand-off scale. But then again, the price was right and as I am employed with the company that manufactures the real aircraft. So it is a topical build for me and I do have some resources to bring it closer to looking like the real thing.

From these two images you can see that this might not be a kit build so much as a kit bash.

To my eye at least, the most glaring discrepancy is the front landing gear. That beefy looking, forward swept nose gear is a signature piece of the overall look of an MQ-9.

This image shows greater detail. Note the cylinder looking part of the lower leg right above the wheel. This casting contains an electric steering servo motor with an ingenious planetary gear train! Continue reading

The Elephant in the Sky!

Otto has created a flying elephant. . .  If it were anyone else it would be astonishing.  For otto is seems just the next challenge.  Here are pics from Disney studios and Hermosa Beach.  The video is from the Fontana 400.  Click the pic.

Disney’s Dumbo flies over the beach after the 25th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade along Pier Ave. on Saturday, March 16, 2019 in Hermosa Beach, California. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

Safety Report for March 2019

By Steve Neu

With the weather warming up and the rain threat declining more people are out flying at our field. In the next few weeks the yellow flowers will be in full bloom with a resulting increase of visitors to our flying site to take pictures and walk among the flowers. Please take a few extra seconds and take a look around the field before starting your flight and adjust  your flying to stay safely away from our visitors(minimum of 50 feet).

On the subject of taking off—I often see members just set their plane at the nearest gate with the nose pointed across the runway. They may or may not announce takeoff then punch the throttle and head across the runway heading north. While this may be fine when you are at the filed by yourself it is a bad habit with others flying in the pattern.  If someone who is landing to the west happens along as the plane heading across the runway blasts off to the north there is a greater possibility of a collision. Please try to make your takeoffs and landings to the west unless there is an east wind. A little bias to the north is fine to help deal with a north cross wind but just blasting across is just not safe.

Lastly a reminder—the last member leaving the field needs to close the gate AND lock it. If there are members of the public there let them know that you are leaving so they don’t get locked in.

Have fun and be safe.

Steve Neu

Electroglide Report for March 2019

By Jeff Struthers

The Electroglide Competition has returned after two months of rain delays. The weather gave us a beautiful blue-sky weekend. Wind was nonexistent at the 10:00 a.m. start, when 10 pilots launched into the pretty San Diego morning.

The lift was hard to find on that first launch, perhaps because of the lack of any wind. Arthur Markie, who just joined the Electroglide Competition this year, had the longest flight at 6:15 minutes and picked up a 20-point bonus landing. Scott Vance had a good flight at 5:15 minutes, also getting a 20-point landing. The rest of us had flights in the three- and two-minute range. Alex Sutton picked up a 20-point landing, George Sullivan and Dennis LaBerge both got 10-point landings. Continue reading

BOD Minutes for March 2019

By Eric Shapiro

Board of Directors Meeting Minutes

The meeting was convened at 7:10 PM with 8 of 9 voting members present. The Secretary, Ken Dresser, was not present and the notes were kept by Eric Shapiro.

First on the list of topics was mutual agreement to replace the dilapidated Popwing pylon flag bag.

We then affirmed that club equipment was being properly stored and the payments up to date for the year.

The Rotorplex liaison position received further discussion and one member has considered stepping up to take the lead – thanks! Announcements will be made when the roll and duties are solidified.

A club member brought up the poor condition of our field windsocks. We agreed that we would be picking up two new socks in the future. They should pep up the place nicely. But, we’d also like to pep up the looks of our Rotorplex area and gates. We would be open to reasonable beautification ideas you have in mind.

Member-at-Large, Carl Cox, is writing an article about SEFSD for a quarterly update in Model Aviation magazine published by the AMA.

To date, we have 275 members which is about par for this time of year. It’s exceptional considering the long spat of poor weather we’ve had recently. However, this run of wet weather has spawned a lot of new, green brush and we anticipate that the growth will provide a lot of new fire fuel in the coming drier months. That’s why we are monitoring the field and considering the need for more fire extinguishers. We are also working on a weed abatement program at the field’s perimeter and pits to mitigate the abundance of fuel.

We still have a need to control the front gate and the flow of non-members onto the premises when we are not there. “Last person out locks the gate” is a club rule and we are looking into signage upgrades that remind members to close the gate behind them. This brought us to gate keys. New keys are on order since we are running out. They remain $3/each if you need a replacement.

And, as ever, we are continuing an ongoing replacement program for tables as their condition worsens.

Lastly, another Sweep Day may be upcoming as was discussed the last month.

You, our loyal club member, will be kept up-to-date and in-the-loop (enough cliches already!) with all things relevant to the club.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:11 PM

Enjoy yourselves and enjoy our club!
Eric Shapiro

Remote ID for Drones

Submitted by Mark Davis

As you probably know, the FAA has been evaluating the requirement for UAVs to transmit a kind of electronic license plate, or “Remote ID”.   The FAA formed an ARC in 2017, which issued its report in September of that year [1].

An NPRM should be out soon, which may shed further light on the requirement.  Meanwhile, ASTM F.38 02 will shortly release the first draft of a proposed technical standard [2].   The standard only covers technical methods, and does not propose anything related to rulemaking.  However, some points of this standard may be interesting to us hobbyists.  

1. The document provides for a Broadcast Remote ID and a Networked Remote ID.  

2. The Broadcast method would be Wifi (at 2.4GHz or 5.8GHz), using the NAN protocol, or Bluetooth at 2.4GHz (BLE4 or BLE5 may be used). Continue reading

Private Pilot Refresher Course

Thanks to Mark Davis for this Information

Contact: David Neville
San Diego Air & Space Museum
(619) 234-8291, Ext. 140 – Direct

(619) 723-0955 – Cell


 For Immediate Release:

 San Diego Air & Space Museum to Begin Offering Private Pilot Ground School Program
The 13- week course prepares attendees to take the written examination for the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Private Pilot certificate.

 San Diego, CA – Feb. 25, 2019 – The San Diego Air & Space Museum is not just a place to see aircraft: now you can learn what it takes to fly them too!  Enrollment has begun for a Private Pilot Ground School program at the Museum’s location in Balboa Park, with classes beginning in March 2019. Continue reading