Shall we put the bad news at the top to get it over with? Sixty dollars; that’s what it’s going to cost to remain a member of SEFSD in 2023. With increases in Paypal fees, the port-a-potty, field rolling equipment and the Winter banquet, an extra $10 is what we need to break even over the current dues of $50. Thanks to Quan for putting together a budget forecast for us. I also received my AMA dues bill the other day which also went up $10 so the price to fly went up a total of $20. Compared with what most of us spend on models and batteries every year, an extra $20 is trivial. Included in that price increase was the Dust Down that would have been applied by now if not for lack of availability of a water truck! The “Hurricane rain” we had the other week helped a lot; just too bad we couldn’t get mother nature to add the dust down material to our rain.
Next up, I am sad to report the resignation of our Treasurer, Alan Issacs. Apparently too many lost models and inability to control them led to Alan’s conclusion that he might not be suited for this hobby. Thank you for your service to date Alan, you were an excellent Treasurer and are welcome to serve out the year in that capacity if you wish to. Our Vice President and previous Treasurer Quan Nguyen has stepped in to fill that void until next year, whereas I’m taking over as Treasurer! This leads into the next subject: succession!
Any thoughts or differences of opinion as to how the Club should be run? Do we want more events or less? Do we like the hot dogs that go with our Monthly Fun Contest and meeting? Do we like the Banquet at the Aerospace Museum (for $55 per person) or would we like it somewhere else at a lower cost? To have a say in these decisions, volunteer or run for a BOD position! Aside from Alan, we have (2) other BOD members whom will not be going forward into next year. I am pleased to announce that our previous President, Brad Bender will be returning to lead us: Thanks for that Brad, you are a great leader, definitely better than myself! This still leaves (2) open positions. Those continuing on the BOD are willing to shuffle around a bit to accommodate newbies. The “Member at Large” is a good place to get one’s feet wet. All you have to do is attend the BOD meetings on the nominally 2nd Wednesday of the month participate in discussion and vote on the outcomes. The secretary position requires attending BOD meetings and taking minutes, not too hard either. Please think about it. Any questions about roles and responsibilities, please shoot me an E-mail. I also wish to recognize our expert Badge Maker, Mr. Peter Kalenak whom took over for George Sullivan this past Spring. Peter is doing an outstandingly competent, no complaints job of it, which is all we can ask for; thanks for your service, Peter.
Have you taken your “TRUST” test yet? This is what I thought to be a silly FAA requirement to allow us to continue flying “recreational drones”. The FAA considers “Quad Copters” and fixed wing R/C models the same. I presumed with my 45 years of R/C modeling experience, the test should be a breeze, but in fact that experience had nothing to do with it! The test is all about how to follow the new FAA rules for recreational drones. The bottom line is as long as you’re flying at our field, you don’t have to do anything different than you do now. The test does reinforce the requirement to maintain Visual Line Of Sight (VLOS) to control your R/C model (or drone), have a spotter for FPV google flying and a few other things that have been determined specifically for our site vs generically. Our altitude limit set by local FAA Air Traffic Controllers is 200 ft for our Class B airspace (in case you didn’t know our proximity to San Diego International Airport puts us in Class B airspace). For those that dabble in quad copters at places other than our field, there are more things you need to know and comply with. Since I also renewed my FAA credentials at the same time, I was required to identify at least one R/C model in order to do so. Let’s see: no transponder, manufacturer is myself and I named it “Generic R/C Model”. Don’t forget to have your FAA Identification number on the outside of all your models. At this time, the club is not planning on enforcing compliance with FAA identification requirements, but if someone from the FAA chose to do so, an established R/C field would be a logical choice vs trying to hunt down one drone flying in some park or field. Take the TRUST Test here : The Recreational UAS Safety Test (TRUST) | THE RECREATIONAL UAS SAFETY TEST (TRUST) TEST by AMA (modelaircraft.org) if you haven’t already.
We were finally able to attend our first Mission Bay Park Planning Meeting. Larry Kosta, Myself and professional Planner Denise Larson attended the September, 2022 meeting of the Mission Bay Park committee at the Santa Clara Pt. REC center. The first part of the meeting was briefed by SDPD representatives and centered on illegal parking, homeless/vagrants and enforcement of Beach Ordinances. They had plenty of funding, just not enough manpower, the overflow requirements staffed by over-time. Next, individuals representing various organizations pitched their plans for running races that involved road/parking lot closures and paths in and around the park. They then ended that meeting and opened a “Park Improvements” meeting where the sole agenda item was a $56,000 repaving of a parking lot at “Sunset Point”. This was pitched by a City Staffer and approved with 1 NO vote. Our goal for the meeting was to understand the planning process and ascertain how we can be included in the Mission Bay Park “Master Plan” which by the way, doesn’t include us. At present we are considering presentation of a “Story Board” style introductory/history pitch of our activities highlighting our community service and charitable activities. At least the committee would have a face to our name and be aware of our history.
Do you have your club swag with custom SEFSD LOGO from LNN Custom Apparel? (via our Weblink: http://companycasuals.com/SEFSD)! We discussed the possibility of having a larger version of our logo silk screened on the back of a Tee Shirt. This is possible, but involves bulk fabrication with setup charges and the club would have to pick sizes and colors and then be at risk for any unsold merchandise. We’re still looking into it. At the last fun-fly contest I say Quan Nguyen’s logo embroidered polo shirt with his name on it: way cool!
I want to clarify something in Jovi’s Chairman’s corner. Though operating R/C cars on the runway is not allowed, if a club member wishes to occasionally operate an R/C dune buggy on the East end of the parking lot late in the day on a non-interference basis (at the present time at least) is okay. These things do kick up some dust so operators need to be conscious of their surroundings. Non-club members should definitely not be operating R/C cars on the site and if it becomes an attractive nuisance the policy may have to change. I’m told there is a site somewhere on Fiesta Island for R/C buggys.
Finally, the last fun-contest/hot dog cookout was a fun as ever. Master of ceremonies Jim Bonnardel began with an explanation of the simplest event yet as he described it : “Spot Landing Challenge” . You get (3) touch and go passes on the circles, the inner most one being 30 points, the middle one 20 and the outer one 10. Miss the circles but touch on the runway gets 5 points. In case of ties, fastest time wins. Anyone whom can add up 3 numbers (in multiples of 5) in their heads should be able to score this, right? Jim cleverly tagged Jovi with the 3 number adding exercise and Jovi in turn passed on the task of picking the winners and breaking the ties to me while he fired up the BBQ. Uhhh…well? How many very competent journeyman engineers does it take to screw in a lightbulb and/or add up (3) numbers in their heads and adjudicate ties from the lowest time? More than (2) apparently as like last month we failed to get it right, arrghh! I suggested the way forward is to award the prizes and then immediately use the scoresheet to light the BBQ, thus erasing any evidence of mistakes! Thanks to Jovi again for the hot dog cooking; Mark Davis is scheduled to reprise his role as master hot dog cooker this month and next month. Welcome back Mark! We’ll see you at this month’s Fun Event.