Time is flying by and we are almost back to summer already. Not that we really had a winter this year, a couple of cool mornings and a tiny bit of rain is the worst we have had since December. That being said I would like to re-state the importance of fire safety at our field. As southern California drops deeper into drought, small incidents have the potential to get out of hand quickly – so please be careful. Last month at the meeting I handed out 13 fire extinguishers to newer club members who have been flying on a regular basis. The next day a foam jet experienced a horribly spectacular ESC failure and burst into flames at the edge of the runway. No less than 4 members with extinguishers were on station in less than 20 seconds with Tuan firing the smothering shot using Lee’s extinguisher. That was great teamwork and what we need to see as we move into summer. It’s not a bad idea to walk out to any incident carrying an extinguisher for that unlikely chance that something may flare up. As a reminder, the caveat to receiving a free extinguisher from the club is that from that day forward you are expected to have an extinguisher with you at the field. If you use it- we need you to replace it ( sorry Lee!! Thems the rules!). One last note on the drought… It’s hot and dry out there! Please make sure you bring plenty of fluids and stay hydrated throughout the day.
This month we saw the return of FAI-F5B and FAI-F5D events to our field. These are high speed events with specialty aircraft that are not for the faint of heart (or eyesight) and are a blast to watch! We had a few participants at the initial event, but now that it is up and running again, we can expect others from southern California and Arizona to be joining in. Just like the rest of the flyers in the club, these guys like answering questions about their gear and how it all works, so if you are interested in getting more info – or trying out another facet of our hobby, don’t be afraid to ask! There will be 3 more events this year, all on Sundays: May 17th, July 19th, and September 20th. They will commence at 12:45 to give the morning flyers a chance to get a few hours in, and can last as late as 5:00 PM depending on how many participants show up that day. During flights the main runway and heli-pad will be closed to all other traffic. There will be periodic breaks during the event during which will be open flying periods. Steve Manganelli, the event director, will be in control of the field and announce the beginning and end of the break periods.
We have had quite a few people show up in the last couple of months with basic airplanes and or questions on how to start and I want to thank everyone for their welcoming attitudes and fine advice you have been handing out. YOU are the reason our club is growing and everyone is having a great time! I have seen lots of buddy boxes in use, and have had someone on a cord myself for nearly every weekend over the last 3 months. It is great to see the excited looks on new faces the first time they pull a loop, roll, or land by themselves. I would like to remind members that we have a couple of training aircraft that are owned by the club. If you have a friend, neighbor, or co-worker that is always telling you they would like to give it a try, but feel the cost is prohibitive – this is the perfect opportunity to get a radio in their hands at no cost to them. While on the buddy box, they will be covered under the instructors AMA insurance. Once they solo, are ready to fly disconnected, and know that this hobby is the greatest thing since ice cream, they won’t feel as reluctant to pay for their AMA and membership. These planes, a Mentor and a Trojan, are maintained by Tim Attaway and Jim Bonnardel. A call or e-mail to either of them by a member with the skills and patience to train will get the planes, radios, and a few batteries delivered to the field within a reasonable time. The member would keep the plane in possession until training is done, then return the gear to a BOD member for storage until the next time.
One last note about the check-off sheets that have been going out to the new members at our site. They can be completed by another member that understands our boundaries, rules, and safe practices. It does not have to be a board member, but please – if you are unsure yourself, please don’t certify a new member. Refer them to somebody that knows and maybe listen in…
FOAMEY FRENZY ( PRIZES!!! ), Club meeting, and Lunch this Saturday the 25th. See YOU there!