Fly Me to the Moon

Photo by Roberto Soncin Gerometta


Why free-flight?

I started to get interested in free flight several years ago when I discovered Mike Stuart's excellent website. I remember seeing a question at the top of Mike's home page: Why free-flight? At the time I couldn't think of an answer, but Mike's explanation made sense and it wasn't long before I showed up at the Marin Aero Club.

Our friend Roberto Soncin Gerometta answers the question in his own way in an article featuring George Benson: Model Airplanes for the Purist, published at NewsPlink in May 2009. If you haven't already seen this item, it is definitely worth checking out. (Photo by Roberto)


Fleet Wheels

Brian asked how I made the Fleet wheels. I bought a pair of RC wheels with light foam tires and heavy rimmed plastic hubs, replacing them with a roughly doweled balsa center and 1/16th sheet discs glued to its ends. I then drilled the new hubs for Al tubing.

After all that work I found I had cut too much off the wire axles - already part of the fuselage structure - and had to countersink the hubs so as to leave enough axle showing for the stops.


Thanks Brian & Roberto

Thanks for the posts guys - how can it not elevate the profile of the pastime.
Here's my Fleet, finished just in time to put it away for the winter.


Another blustery Lakeville meet

Grey skies and a chilly wind greeted the hardy souls who made it to Lakeville on Sunday.
We were lucky to get some flights in before the storm arrived, as four inches of rain fell a couple of days later, turning the field into a swamp.

I launched my trusty Senator a few times, as did Ray...and they quickly made their way towards San Pablow Bay.

George was flying his excellent Blackburn Airedale, a real floater with its huge multi tapered wing. It flew well, even in the stiff breeze.

Tom was chasing his Keil Kraft Achilles around, whilst trying out the prototype belly-winder rig that George designed.

We'll be fortunate if we get another MAC outdoor session this year.
Hopefully better flying weather will be had in 2010!


The Fine Art of Flying Rubber

Roberto made this video at yesterday's TOFFF session at Lakeville. More information about the weekly Thursday gathering may be found at the SAM 27 website.



My latest project is the Fleet 16B (Finch). Paul gave me this super R/N Models kit (for power RC or rubber.) I cut out some of the wood and it looks like finishing up around 100 grams. It'a simple build but making the radial engine has been time consuming - the model just wouldn't look right without it. I have plenty of time I guess - it will be around 5 months before we get gliding grass.



The trick is in the stick and a very secret new product evaluation

Mike L has a complete airforce with only one motor between them . . .

Here's another pic of Dave's owl and Eduardo's A-6 confronting the light fixture

At Lakeville today I put the GB1 Bellywinder through its first field test. I can't disclose too many details, but it performed well and will require some modifications.