Daily Archives: May 21, 2020

11 posts

Chairman’s Corner for May-June 2020

Sorry guys,

As of this writing, Mission Bay Park is still closed to any non-boating, non-exercise (sandy beach only) related activities. It is a fluid situation, and I am really hoping that it changes prior to Memorial Day weekend! We are keeping a close eye on the situation, and even though new recommendations were sent to the Governor on Tuesday, requesting more openings in San Diego, the response has not been publicized as of this writing.  I also heard that Balboa Park and Mission Bay Park will remain closed longer after other parks reopen due to the manpower required for the place to keep an eye on these extremely large areas. I hope it’s not true!

As I mentioned in my weekly updates, some other local clubs in the San Diego area (but not on the beach) have reopened. In the past couple of weeks I have joined and flown with the Chollas RC Flyers, and as a guest at the Chula Vista Model Radio Control Club. Both clubs were very welcoming and accommodating. I hope you’re getting out while being careful!

One thing I want to discuss is how we are going to reopen our area when the time comes. Once we have an indication that we can access the site, The Board of Directors will be looking for a few volunteers to join us on-site getting it ready for recreational activities. That will involve placing some City and County mandated signs at the gate, and within the flying site outlining the directives that we must follow: such as limiting the numbers using the site at one time, and explicit social distancing requirements. In the beginning we will be limiting the number of vehicles allowed to park near the pits to 20. Most of the work tables are long enough to share from opposite ends, but the short ones will be limited to one person per table. Each 9 foot gate can be used by two people distancing themselves to each end. If there are vehicles in the parking lot waiting to pull up to the tables, we are asking members to limit their flying time, at the beginning, to two hours then move away and let other members move up and fly. We are not going to be the table police, but I’m asking you all to share the site with each other on your honor. Due to strict cleaning requirements every 2 hours if opened, the Porta Potty will remain locked until further notice. Facilities will be available at the boat ramp if in dire need. Once things level out a bit we will look into reinstating the monthly event calendar, and possibly electroglide and Mini Trojan racing. Randy had a chance to take a look at the field in the last 2 weeks and most of our chairs have migrated away. Please plan to bring chairs with you, and if you have some old ones you would like to donate, we could use them!

While I do miss flying at our club, I miss interacting with the members most of all. I want to thank Scott Charity for helping me check the final balance, and standing by when I did the maiden flight on my 125” Extra 300 at Chollas, and Jim Bonnardel who was my wingman at Chula Vista for subsequent flights last weekend. Steve Neu also spent an evening basically soldering jumper cables ( 6AWG wire ) on to the battery packs  as needed to support a 330 amp draw to hover a 46 lb plane.  Thanks guys!!!

John at Discount Hobbies currently has both of his stores open for curbside service.  His hours have varied for the last two weeks, so please call before going to the store. You can call ahead and check if particular items are in stock, or order at the door. Sorry, no browsing.  It is critical that we support him in these times or we could lose his store fronts all together!

I hope to see you all soon, Stay safe!


SEFSD Founder Chuck Grim Has Passed

My Friend Chuck Grim

By Steve Manganelli

To most current members of SEFSD, Chuck was the guy in the cool red Tesla Model X. Few people know that Chuck is actually the founder of SEFSD! I don’t think Chuck flew in several years having battled cancer for most of the last 10; his health not sufficient to allow him to participate in our pastime. Chuck was always the quiet guy, tirelessly turning the cranks behind the scenes; never the loudmouth front man, always the selfless supporter. To me Chuck was both a friend and co-worker, we were both career Engineers at NAVAIR/North Island, him retiring about 2010 and myself in 2019.

Turning back the clock to about 1990, Chuck knew that Steve Neu and myself were experimenting with electric powered R/C models. Chuck suggested, “Why don’t you bring one to work and demonstrate it for us during lunch in the newly built park in Coronado”. Sounded like a plan to me, I brought a 7-cell racer I’d designed called the DC Tempest. That was (7) 1.2 Ah round cells, not 7S something or the other, more like 2S1200 but weighed more like 3S3300! With a crowd of other Engineers including Kurt Fowler, Lynn Heffern and of course Chuck eagerly looking on, the DC tempest was tossed and made that park seemed tiny. Talk about turn around maneuvers, that’s all I could do! Fortunately all of San Diego Bay was available to set up my landing approach nothing went wrong during a couple of minutes of loops and rolls; the Tempest settled into the grass without problems. The assembled crowd of Chuck’s fellow Engineers were suitably impressed. Chuck clearly thought there was a future in electric powered R/C.

Not too much later, I was hanging out in Chucks office when he said something like “Steve, this electric thing is clearly viable, what do you think about starting a new club in San Diego dedicated to electric propulsion?” “We would be strictly electric, no ICE would be allowed, and because we’re avowed to be quiet, finding a club field should be easy!” At that time, I was unaware that Chuck was dabbling in R/C modeling and was experimenting with E-power also. I said, “OK sounds like a plan”. We (probably he, because that was Chuck) ginned up a flyer announcing an introductory meeting, we set a date a few weeks in the future at some community center I don’t remember. We distributed these flyers to all the Hobby shops in town (there were 5 or 6 back then, sadly more than there are now). We were astonished that more than 30 people showed up and by the end of that meeting we agreed to form a club and collected $5 dues from each person present. Of course, as organizers of the group, myself and Chuck and probably Steve Neu were sitting at the head table pontificating over the assembled masses. When the dust cleared, Chuck managed to elect himself Treasurer or Secretary and myself as President! Pretty darn crafty for someone for which a club was his own idea! One topic of discussion is what we would name ourselves. “Prop Busters” or “Battery Burners” of San Diego certainly wouldn’t do. Chuck wanted us to have a more regal moniker. Chuck already had a name “Silent Electric Flyers of San Diego”, which was derived from Silent Electric Flyers of Long Island, an East Coast group whose exploits Chuck admired and I’m sure he hoped we’d eventually usurp.

Chuck, never the hero observed Steve Neu and others flying FAI-F5B and managed to get himself “appointed” as Team Manager for at least (3) bi-annual World Championship Teams. The Team Manager is the person whom gets to use his spare time, “spare” vacation time and money to organize a trip to Europe carrying huge model boxes, trying to get the AMA to pay for everything, find hotels, transportation and the penultimate achievement : participate in an International Team Managers meeting where minutia of rules are argued vainly in English, each TM trying to gain advantage for his home team. After that, you get to sit in the sun for a (2) day toy airplane contest followed by a (4) or (5) day toy airplane contest!

Between his and my retirements, Chuck and I were discussing work at North Island. After several organizational changes and reorganizations we both concluded that I in fact occupied the closest thing that remained to Chuck’s former position in charge of Aircraft Avionics Engineering which was a country mile from where we were when the club was started. Hmmm, how did Chuck manage to hand me down his old Federal job?

After excusing himself from shepherding any more US FAI-F5B World Championship Teams, Chuck took on the equally thankless task of leading the US FAI-F5 Team Selection Committee. This fun job involves developing and maintaining various Team Selection Program Plans, seeing to it that proper US World Championship Teams are fairly created via sanctioned competitive events and the winning Team Members names are dutifully conveyed to the AMA.

Sometime after Chuck’s health deteriorated, Steve Neu twisted my arm into taking on the task of US FAI-F5 Team Selection Program Manager…wait a minute this was Chuck’s job! Dang it Chuck, you did it to me again! And I wouldn’t have had it any other way. We’ll miss the selfless courage you used to fight illness for many years and your irreverent humor. Wishing you forever blue skies, light winds, perfect landings and batteries that always stay charged. Goodbye old friend.

Steve Neu’s 73″ Twin Otter Project

One of my C19 plane projects.
I have always liked Twin Otters since flying in them a number of times when I was a kid. They are a “work truck” plane that can land and takeoff in the most improbable locations with just about anything that will fit in the fuselage. The DH6 first flew in 1965 and is still in production.
Back last autumn I saw that VQ Models (https://vqwarbirds.com/product/vq-dhc-6-twin-otter-73/) had a good deal on their version—if you were willing to order and wait a few months for them to take a slow boat from Vietnam. They finally arrived in late January—about the same time the C19 virus started making news here. So what better plane to build during the “stay at home” order than the DH6?
The basics for the VQ DH6:
73 inch wing span
RTF 7 lbs
Construction materials mostly balsa
Power: 2x Neu3814/950 Kv with Talon 35 controllers
props: APC 10×6 E
Servos: 6xHitec 4 mini and 2 std digital
battery 3500mAh 4S 35 C
Plane goes together pretty well —the instructions are fine for anyone who has some experience with more complex models. Twins with lots of servos require some work to avoid a wiring nightmare—so plan your work! The kit includes most of the hardware—one time that I ended replacing were the spinners which I could get to balance  to my satisfaction. I ended up going to Discount and picking up some Great Planes 2 inch spinners which solved then problem. The finished plane looks great with all the details—even the doors open!
Depending on when we get our field back the first flight will either happen at Mission Bay or Chollas very soon—all is ready and it has passed the taxi tests in the street at my house. Some pictures of the assembly process for your enjoyment.
Steve Neu

Tuan Adds Flaps to His 60″ FW-190

I did it!!
Took a loooong time because I didn’t know what I would find inside once the flaps were cut and luckily I cut correctly.  So a bit of thought put into building as I have nooooo experience. Those Zona saws are amazing and a must have, (Thanks to Brian!).  Since hinges are on top, and I couldn’t cut any angle on the bottom of the flaps, I had to add a 5mm wide spar on top. I think they came out as good as I can get it. I had extra  covering material from the kit, it’s a stick-on type. When  I was about to test, one of my servo died, so ordering now…
It was a very interesting and a fun project during lockdown. It was a toss-up between either I have a FW-190 with flaps or loss of a nice plane since I don’t have a spare wing, the don’t sell them..
Thank you again for all info before I started.

Odie and His 3D Printed GB R3 Racer

Odie sent in the pics below showing some of his 3D printed projects.  The blue plane is a GB R3.  This is a scratch build using mainly plastic 3D printed parts.  Like many models of full size planes there were compromises such as increasing the wing area to reduce the wing loading.  The chord was increased to 120% and the area increased to 160%.  Other challenges include making the plane light but also stiff and strong.  Wall thicknesses are alway in mind and must be kept thin as possible.  He says one needs a good printer to maintain the structural integrity of thin components.

He started with an imported drawing of the plane and created the segmented parts in a professional version of Solidworks.

To keep the tail light he uses balsa for the stabilizers.  This also helps with balance.  He uses a slicing program, along with Solidworks, to help calculate the weight and balance on the computer before printing the parts.

Printing time is proportional to the amount of plastic used (mass).  The GB took about 16 hours of printer time.  As with most 3D printed planes, the parts are printed in sections and glued or snapped together.

Spektrum Transmitter Switches

For those of you who have maybe jumped up and down on your transmitter screaming bad words after a bad landing, or just knocked the TX off a table, there are a few sources to get replacement switches.  Thanks to Frank Sutton’s efforts to get replacement switches for Alex’s transmitter (knocked off a table) your search is made easy.  Here is where they got theirs:

JK Electronics’ Website is at this link:  http://jkelectronics.com/
JK Electronics is located just off I-405 and the address/phone number is on their Website.  I don’t have the part number, but I’ve attached two photos showing both sides of the replacement toggle switch. One side it states “D Q 11” and on the other side it states “ON  OFF ON” and “2A 250VAC”, then “5A 120VAC”. This is the same thing in our Spektrum Transmitters. The price was right too, just under $3 each!


Brad found some transmitter switches at Digikey:

The website is  www.digikey.com

The 3 position long round switch – usually flap:
The 3 position short round switch :
The 2 position long flat switch:

WWII American Spitfire Pilot

An 18 year-old just out of high school was trained to take pictures of damage done to German targets  by B-17’s. He flew in a British Spitfire fitted with extra fuel tanks where the guns were. In other words, he flew over Germany unarmed…

WWII American Spitfire Pilot…

This is probably one of the best WWII film clips out there. Stored for 61 years in two suitcases of 16mm home movies that were inherited by filmmaker William Lorton from his great uncle who served as a Flight Surgeon. Those suitcases contained 3 hours of war footage that included a compelling crash landing of a Spitfire in 1944

Filmed in a 2005 interview with the now 83 year old pilot and seeing the expression on his face when he realizes it is him in the cockpit, is something you won’t soon forget.

At 18 years old, he was all alone, behind enemy lines, with no guns, no escort, and he gladly did it.

They just don’t make them like that anymore. It was truly the greatest generation and we owe them so much.

Two FAA Emails Regarding Remote ID

For Immediate Release
May 5, 2020
Contact: pressoffice@faa.gov

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) today announced the eight companies that will assist the Federal government in establishing requirements for future suppliers of Remote Identification (Remote ID). Remote ID will enable Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), commonly called drones, to provide identification and location information while operating in the nation’s airspace.

The FAA selected the following companies to develop technology requirements for future Remote ID UAS Service Suppliers (USS): Airbus, AirMap, Amazon, Intel, One Sky, Skyward, T-Mobile, and Wing. These companies were selected through a Request for Information process in December 2018.

“The FAA will be able to advance the safe integration of drones into our nation’s airspace from these technology companies’ knowledge and expertise on remote identification,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

This initial group will support the FAA in developing technology requirements for other companies to develop applications needed for Remote ID. The applications will provide drone identification and location information to safety and security authorities while in flight.

The technology is being developed simultaneously with the proposed Remote ID rule. Application requirements will be announced when the final rule is published. The FAA will then begin accepting applications for entities to become Remote ID suppliers. The FAA will provide updates when other entities can apply to become qualified Remote ID USS on FAA.gov.

Drones are a fast-growing segment of the transportation sector with nearly 1.5 million drones and 160,000 remote pilots now registered with the FAA. The agency’s ability to develop Remote ID technology simultaneously with the rule enables the FAA to continue to build on a UAS Traffic Management (UTM) system that has demonstrated global leadership through the small UAS rule and the implementation of the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC), which automates the application and approval process for most UAS operators to obtain airspace authorizations.



Remote ID Cohort Information

Thanks for the questions we received after yesterday’s press release on the Remote ID Cohort. To clarify, the Cohort is not part of the decision-making process for the proposed Remote ID rule final rule. The Cohort will help the FAA develop technology requirements for other companies to develop applications needed for Remote ID. The comment period on the Remote ID Notice of Proposed Rulemaking closed on March 2, 2020, and the FAA is reviewing the more than 53,000 comments.

If you are a member of the media, contact us at pressoffice@faa.gov and a public affairs specialist will respond.

If you are a drone operator with questions about Remote ID, or any other drone-related question, please email UAShelp@faa.gov or call 844-FLY-MY-UA.