National Free Flight Society

SEN 2980

  1. Results of Arizona F1E Champs at Lost Hills
  2. Autonomous Models ?
  3. Norcal FF Champs

Results of Arizona F1E Champs at Lost Hills

This F1E contest was scheduled for April 12 a day after the San Valeers F1E contest. Unfortunately on that Tuesday the wind was blowing at 25mph so the decision was made to postpone it to the Reserve Day, April 13. Half of the 6 pilots of the San Valeers F1E could not stay so we only had 3 fliers flying on Wednesday. After 4 days of strong winds it was nice to have 0 to 6mph winds out of NW and W for the AZ Champs. The skies were blue and there were good thermals which resulted in 6 flights of more than 3 minutes each going above the horizon.

Peter Brocks, CD

13-Apr-22     ARIZONA F1E CHAMPS

R1      R2      R3      R4      R5   % TOTAL
180     180     180   180 (97)  180

1  Fred Terzian    USA    164      64     180      97     180    426.67
2  Peter Brocks    USA    180     180     180      75      74    418.43
3  Dave Parson     USA     92     180     102      83     125    362.79


Autonomous Models ?

Aram Schlosberg

In a social setting I was recently asked about my hobby. I said It was autonomous model airplanes.
With RC?
No – they are completely autonomous
Wow, all by themselves?
Yes. One can change aerodynamic settings using a clock that is programmed in advance.
What about the wind?”
They can fly for a fixed duration and are programmed to come down like a spinning leaf.
Can’t you loose them?”
Not really. I’m assisted by a radio beacon or more recently – by a GPS system.
Conceptually, true “free flight” should be confined to LOCKED surface models domain. (P-30 and E-36 are not trivial by all means.)
AUTONOMOUS models, however, is a more accurate description of competitive FAI Models.

Editor’s Comment
I think we have to be very careful about calling our models autonomous models to do with how they conform to our rules and the Civil Aviation authorities drone rules.  Our models are autonomous and in particular “auto stable” because of the ways the flying surfaces are aligned and some time initiated controls.  They are not autonomous in the sense that they do not have electronic for similar sensors on board that helps them fly better of longer.  The decision to forbid GPS for F1E was a good one because an onboard GPS could make a model fly to wards a target. Our Free Flight forbid closed loop control systems which would be a system of determining and objective or destination and continually adjusting the models controls to achieve that goal. Such as sensing where lift is and ‘steering’ the model to stay in the lift.

In pre-electronic times the nearest we came to this was pendulum  controlled free flight scale models as a way of making aircraft designed that wee not auto-stable fly by themselves.  I remember seeing pictures and plan of these 50 years ago or so but not much these days. I suspect that they are rather difficult to adjust.

Norcal FF Champs

From: Fred Terzian

It seems the Northern California Free Flight Champs is rising from the ashes for this weekend. Could be that early posting on the Lost Hills website calendar, lack of major upcoming contests in California until late Sept. (Free Flight Champs) then Oct./Nov. schedules at Lost Hills. Of course the five day Willamette contest in Tangent fills out the August schedule (which competes with the Muncie Nats).
I am bringing several large Hallmark cards for both Hank Cole (turns 101 this August) and Carl “David” Parsons who is recovering from major surgery. Those in attendance will be encouraged to write something for each of them.

I look forward to seeing all of my free flight friends and S.F Bay Area associated clubs from SAM 21, SAM 27 and the Alameda Control Line group.

Partial note from Rod Persons:
Thursday looks like a blow out but Oakland Cloud Duster’s annual three day event at Wagell Field in Rancho Cordova. Please support Bill Vanderbeek and Fred Terzian. This is the biggest event that is held in Northern California.

Fred T.