Flying With Fred Vol.VI # 3

/Flying With Fred Vol.VI # 3

Flying With Fred Vol.VI # 3

If you went out and invested in a snow blower last year (or in any other Winter “weaponry”) in anticipation of the repeat of the Snowfest Of 2011, what you’ve been hearing recently is Mother Nature saying “FOOLED YOU”! It’s been a long while since we’ve had such a mild season between the months of November and March. Except for some gusty winds, it’s made for more flying opportunities than we’ve had in ages. Hope most of you were able to take advantage of same.

While it was mentioned at the regular meeting in March, the following bears repeating. Thanks to all those who volunteered to man our booth at the new and improved WRAM Show in New Jersey, we once again made a modest pile of money. Special thanks to Dave Londin, who manned the con for all three days of the show, and never once asked for Preparation H or similar help. Once again with the efforts of a few, many will benefit- thanks, guys!

Speaking of the WRAM show, it was- by all accounts- a star-spangled hit. More space, more vendors, more attractions- including the first ever pond for boating enthusiasts. Too bad it sprung a leak due to prop damage from racing boats and had to be emptied Saturday overnight. While not everything went according to plan, it laid the groundwork for more success in 2013. I think it will be to our advantage to continue to partner with the WRAM going forward in this regard. Now if we can have more folks volunteering to help with the booth next year…

Now for some Business- In a little over 48 hours we’ll be having our 2012 Spring Cleanup Day. A number of things have to be done to the field and flight line items. The weather forecast is good, and we’ll kick things off promptly at 10 AM with coffee and donuts. Flying will be suspended until all the work is done, so don’t show up around noon expecting to get into the air. Bring tools such as a rake, shovel, electric drill & bits, hammers, etc. (some of the tables need some TLC) and dress appropriately.

This is the first of three required events/tasks for members to take advantage of our dues reduction offer for 2013. The next one is coming up reallyfast afterwards- Tuesday April 17th. This is our regular monthly meeting, at which Peter Peale will give a presentation on basic First Aid procedure, to hopefully help in averting another Howard Linnartz incident.

Peter stepped up and volunteered to take the full, official Red Cross Basic First Aid Training course, and now he’ll be passing along all sorts of useful info.  It’s a good idea to know what to do, and what NOT to do, in an emergency situation, if you decide (and are able) to take action. Hope it never comes down to it, but you may be in a position to save someone’s life someday with this knowledge.

Apparently everything in the aircraft RC world- and maybe the entire RC world- appears to be on backorder. At least, the good stuff, from what I’ve run across in the last few weeks. Stuff the vendors at the WRAM show swore would be available by the end of March or beginning of April is now not coming until sometime in… mid-May! Maybe a lot of stuff was lost when that container ship went down off the coast of New Zealand earlier this year. It was carrying close to 800 containers, many from China. I’m salivating for the new Albatros from Park Zone to compliment my SE-5A, which continues to prove a very nice item.

My plans to start the new Bristol M1 have been delayed due to a condition known as “Static Aviatic Plasticitis” which involves the involuntary and sudden urge to build NON-flying plastic aircraft models. This malady usually manifests itself only during harsh winters, when- while combating Cabin Fever- I usually bring out one or two static kits to build for either my family or the kids on the block (or sometimes, even for me) as a change from the stuff that actually flies.

I had given my nephew (currently in his first year at Annapolis, getting ready to help out Uncle Sam’s Navy) an old Monogram 1/48 scale kit of a P-38 Lightning about a zillion years ago when he was in grammar school. The molds go back to the 60’s and reflect it with barely passable fit and engineering. If you’re over 50 you remember the model- originally went for $1.75 or thereabouts, and you could build one of three (or four?) different versions! (golly-gee). Cool stuff for a kid back then (and maybe, even now).

We never got around to starting the darned thing, what with damned video games and other distractions taking precedence, and it stayed on his closet shelf for ages until the other day when, while visiting my brother, I spied it still sitting there forlornly on the shelf with stuff piled on top. I took it home and decided to build and present it to him the next time he’s home on leave. It’s almost finished in a quasi-night fighter gloss black finish. The five pieces that make up the canopy are going to be tricky, however. It looks great… if you don’t stand too close.

The other item that caught my eye while shopping for B-Day present for a young cousin in January (at a local version of a 5 & 10 cent store, no less) was the re-release by Revell of a 1/48 MIG-21, last offered in the late 80’s if memory serves. The airplane has always struck me as a rakish and zoomy-looking design, and I wanted to crank out something quick and colorful in desert camo and optional Indian Air Force markings. It’s almost done- an easier build with fit and decals upgraded from the previous older generation kit.

Once both of these are off the table, straight to the matter with the M1. Ooops- forgot I have to reinstall the firewall and engine on my trusty Fokker D-VII Global Hobby ARF. Pronged it due to (mechanical) lack of up elevator after a great flight about a month ago. Got to get crankin’, though… the original images of the first M1 build are constantly swimming in my head- could probably bring it together blind-folded. Have some nifty updates planned for it also.

Last but not least- everyone at the field should now have 2012 stickers, no exceptions (other than those already aware of same). If someone shows up and wants to fly without 2012 authorization, especially if they’re strangers, no dice- unless you want to accept the responsibility for them as a guest, with a valid AMA card, of course. We’ll begin having monthly meetings at the field beginning in May, weather permitting. On behalf of myself and the Officers and Directors, may you all have a great 2012 flying season.

And Remember- fly safely, but FLY!