National Free Flight Society

SEN 1867

Table of Contents – SEN 1867

  1. SCAT Black Cup
  2. CIAM Meeting Q
  3. CIAM Meeting – Clock
  4. Plans and things

SCAT Black Cup

This summer SCAT is continuing with five Saturday FAI fun flys. The first four will be at the Perris Model field (GPS: 33.786995, -117.21668) and the last in Lost Hills. We have done this the last two years and the casual atmosphere has been enjoyed by all that have flown. The last 2013 Black Cup was won by Kevin Sherman—we had to create the tie breaker rule in that 5 people maxed out that day. These are AMA sanctioned and also qualify for the Team Selection 75 minute qualification time(qualification ends Sept 23, 2014).

SCAT Black Cup Rules
1. All FAI FF events (F1A,B,C, E (bring a hill),G.H,J,K, , P and Q. Single $5entry fee, fly as many events that you wish
2. Flown to current FAI rules except as noted
3. 7 flights, No rounds, flights to be flown between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm, No extended flight times, 2 min event maxes prorated to 3 minutes. Self timing allowed for Black Cup. If pursuing a record, must use independent timer(s) for all flights.
4. No fly-offs, tie breaker is the flyer that completes their 7 flights first
5. Single perpetual trophy awarded to overall winner
6. Flyer with the most number of wins or the last winner keeps Cup after the last 2014 event
7.SCAT will pay for engraving of the Cup plaque with 2014 winners names,event and total time after the last event

SCAT Black Cup Contest Dates

May 3, 2014. Perris CA

June 14, 2014. Perris CA

July 19, 2014. Perris

Aug 2. 2014. Perris

Sept 6, 2014. Lost Hills

Thermals, Jim Parker<>

CIAM Meeting – Q


My heart broke in reading the CIAM report on F1Q rule changes. This event
could have been the center of the greatest expansion in FAI free flight in
many years but instead it has become an ever changing maze of complex
rules. All it ever needed to be was a voltage limit, a weight limit and a
motor run limit. RIP F1Q, God save E-36.

Pessimistically yours,

Editor’s Note

Ross, I think that the best thing about the E-36 rules and the process to create them was not so much the rules themselves but rather that the NFFS got people to build and fly model to the proposed rules to validate their viability.

By changing the F1Q rules so often it is certainly very discouraging. There are a number of different opinions on bad the rule changes are.

CIAM Meeting Clock

Pardon me my pidgin English; I hope someone native English speaker could clarify the interpretation of the time rounding rule to me. Quoting from SEN:
The rule will now read:/The time recorded is the mean of the times registered by the timekeepers, rounded to the nearest whole number of seconds to the resulting mean time (0.5 second rounded up to the second above) unless the difference between the times registered shows evidence of an error in the timing/

In above, does the word “rounded” refer to the word “mean” or to the word “times”? In other words, what is rounded; the times recorded by the timekeepers, or the (calculated) mean of the recorded times?

For what it is worth, I found this rule change unnecessary. When discussing it with my Finnish friends, we all agreed of the same procedure of recording times: 1) calculate the mean of the individual timekeepers times, and 2) cut off the sub-seconds from this time. I also learned that the reason to add the rounding (instead of cutting down the time) was due to in French Championships there were problems in timing, when the jury instructed that the clock readings need to be cut to 180 seconds before calculating the mean. From measuring point of view this procedure of cutting the time to 180 was in error, and I e-mailed mr. Kaynes pointing out that here lies the error, for which reason the change of the rounding rule is not the proper correcting action. I never got a reply.

The reason why I find the decision by the jury incorrect is that each time taken by a timekeeper can be considered as a measurement/sample of the actual variable (flight time). In each measurement, there is a random error involved. Typically such measuring errors can be considered to be randomly and symmetrically distributed with zero mean; this means that the more measurements you take and average, the smaller is the error and most of all, the error does not bias the result. However, this only applies if you allow the error to also take the measured time above 180 seconds. If you cut the times to the 180 secs (or whatever max) then the distribution of the errors is no longer symmetrical, but scewed, and the errors will indeed pull down the average of the times. This is the reason that (to my understanding) the new rules suggest adding the half second to the time (rounding the time to max from 179.50 seconds).


next thought

hh, never mind, reading the rule in details says “rounded… resulting mean time”, so the score is averaged, and then rounded.

Still not a mention of truncating clock readings to the max, so I interpret the rule so that 179.50 secs now counts as a max.


Plans and Things

Hi Roger,

Please let the Free Flight world know…
Plans and Things is open for business! Our offerings include: Free Flight Scale plans and books by Bill Hannan as well as Frank Zaic books. Go to to take a look.

Thanks, Jim and DeAnn Lueken

Roger Morrell