National Free Flight Society

SEN 2472

  1. Well why don’t we
  2. Editor and factory response
  3. About the use of altimeters: answer to Allard:
  4. USA Junior Team Report #1

Well why don’t we
From:Michael Achterberg

Altimeter. Had a thought that may simplify the use for timing. There is a possibility that one of the producers of these devises might want to create a business and rent them for contests to organizer. Thinking rent them for use at $5 or $10/ unit. Add cost to entry fee.  Supply 50 or so, that could be taped on model behind pylon. All the same, all tested for accuracy. Very small battery to run for 2 or 3 flights. The supplier can make enough money in 2 or 3 contests to cover cost and then make a fair dollar for his effort afterwards. We could see if Massimo, Alex, Renee or others might be interested. The upside to this is the CD has all same units and download all the same program.  Fairly simple for CD to deal with. Just a thought

Thermals,Dino .

Editor and factory response

There have been a number of informal discussions, proposals, suggestions around some automated form of timing.
The good news is that such a device would be quite cheap and much technology is available off the shelf and expertise present in our community.

The bad news is the cost of developing such a system give our current [CIAM]  way of doing things is cost prohibitive. And in this case the highest cost component is time and the risk that a development program would go nowhere.

Taking myself as an example, I understand what [I think] is needed and I’m sure those others you mentioned plus some others do too. But why would we put our precious resources (time !) into a project when we have many others asking for that time and the likelihood of getting such an automated timing project through all the steps quickly is remote.  For example look at the evolution of F1Q … and the note From Pierre Chaussebourg in this issue of SEN.  In the latter case Allard and his team came up with a good suggestion, but in trying to put it into use an experienced Jurist, Pierre, encountered some obstacles. Probably some of that can be resolved by some work on the wording but that’s going to take a year to fix, we have to turn this stuff around faster.  Our environment is changing very fast, companies and organizations that are adapting to that fast changing world are succeeding, those back in the 1930s are failing. We [FAI/CIAM]  still have that old mentality.

Now off to mail a couple of timers to customers and pack my bags for the Poitou and HISPANO FRANCIA contest.

About the use of altimeters: answer to Allard

About the use of altimeters: answer to Allard:

I think that the use of altimeters, or any electronic solution to time free flight models is certainly the best solution for the future.

But, at the moment, the rule F.1.2.7 which had to be applied at the recent FF Euro/champs gives just a very few possibilities to a Jury to take the time recorded by the altimeter.

First, this rule must be studied very carefully.

It is clear that it may be used only in Fly-Offs and in case of a dispute (the competitor does not accept the time recorded by the timekeepers).

Then, it is written in that rule: “if the moment of launch, landing and flight time can be clearly established and the correct signature is present, the flight time will be recorded for the final result”.

Then: “If any one of these conditions is not met, the timekeepers’ time of the disputed fly-off round will be used as the score for that fly-off round”.

The main rule for the timing remains the F.1.2.3 End of flight:

“The flight is considered ended when the model touches the surface of the earth, encounters an obstacle which definitely terminates its flight or when it definitely disappears from the timekeeper’s sight. If the model etc… (20 seconds rule)

Then, Allard, I ask you the question: “How can you show me on a graph that the model did not disappear from the timekeeper’s sight?”

Or, how can you prove that the end of the flight recorded by the altimeters is compatible with the rule F.1.2.3 End of flight?

This is the reason I think that at least the moment of landing cannot be clearly established, and so a jury cannot accept the time proposed by the altimeter.

For me, this new rule F.1.2.7 has been voted for nothing except to start the way in the electronic timing…

One more thing: this rule says: “such devices must be commercially available”

At FF European Championship, one competitor came to the jury and asked for the address of the place where he could buy an altimeter. He said that he found no shop where this device may be bought…

To conclude: it is probably the future of free flight to find a way to time the flights electronically, but in that case, it will be acceptable only when timekeepers will not be necessary any more, and at least when that rule F.1.2.3 End of flight will be accordingly modified.

We still have a lot of work!


USA Junior Team Report #1
From: Bob Stalick

Report From Pazardzhik – August 3, 2018

The USA Junior Team has finally arrived in Pazardzhik, Bulgaria for the upcoming Junior World FAI Champs, set to begin on Tuesday, August 7.

Today was spent trimming models for the conditions on the field and getting in practice time. The entire team was present except for Adelaide Ulm, along with the team manager, Jim Parker and Assistant Manager, Sevak Malkasyan. Adelaide’s models were “lost” in transit, and didn’t arrive for nearly 2 days, finally showing up at the Sophia airport late this afternoon.
Team members are:
F1A:  Roman Stalick, Adelaide Ulm, and  Joel Yori
F1B:  Kyle Gerspacher and Joel Yori
F1P:  Hayden Ashworth.

As you can see, we don’t have a full team in any event except F1A, but I’m confident that the team members we have are up to the task ahead. Joel is the only repeat member of the team, having competed in Macedonia in 2016.

A bit about the location. Bulgaria was one of the Soviet Bloc countries during the early stages of the cold war, and vestiges of that past are evident around the area in the form of the usual concrete block buildings. The town of Pazardzhik (which I pronounce Pa-Zard-Check), seems to be a typical small eastern European town. I think the population is around 50,000 or so, and as you leave the town, it rapidly becomes rural. Sunflowers are a huge crop in the area, and on the 10 mile drive to the field, we passed many large fields. It is quite close to a location where the FAI once held a World Champs.

The field itself was once a military base and is quite large with some small trees and bushes as obstructions. A large warehouse style structure and a farmhouse are near one edge of the field. The flying site seems to be surrounded by farm fields, which provide reasonable overflight space, if any is needed.

Today’s test flying was done on a part of the field that had some foot tall grass on it, but proved to be a suitable location for our activities. Weather was generally warm with temps in the low 80’s. Wind drift was variable most of the AM, but settled in from the south as the day wore on. Wind was not a factor all day, and never exceeded a few miles per hour at any time.

Tomorrow is a pre-contest contest for The Bulgaria Cup, as I recall. A number of our fliers will be trying their hand at this event.

I’ve posed a few pictures of our team members in action on the Freeflight page of Facebook. Check it out.

Tomorrow I’ll be back with some more of the day’s activities. Look us up right here.

Bob Stalick, Reporter