Postals Scores ---- February 2009

club - total
1 Durban Model Aircraft Club - 8939
2 Midrand Model Soarers - 8752
3 Silverton Gliding Club - 8722
4 Bartlett Egg Radio Gliders - 6743
5 Jailbirds Gliding Club - 5974
6 Standerton Model Club - 4070
7 Eastern Thermal Busters - 4056

name - club - total - class
1 A. Sneedon - DMAC - 2293
2 C. Adrian - SGC - 2291
3 M. Goodrum - MMS - 2277
4 J. Bruwer - SGC - 2276
5 A. Smith - JGC - 2266
6 M. Leusch - DMAC - 2262
7 J. Coetzer - SGC - 2261
8 T. Austin - MMS - 2235
9 D. Bird - DMAC - 2231
10 R. Nelson - DMAC - 2153
11 C. Goodrum - MMS - 2127 - 2m
12 W. Steffny - MMS - 2113
13 S.Tladi - MMS - 2079
14 D. Slatter - DMAC - 2066
15 B. Fanning - DMAC - 2055
16 H. Weber - ETB - 2055
17 S. Nelson - DMAC - 2050
18 P. Carnall - ETB - 2001
19 J. Geldenhys - JGC - 1999 - 2m
20 P. Rheeders - BERG - 1984 -2m
21 L. Brink - MMS - 1974
22 M. Smith - DMAC - 1963 - 2m
23 G. Browne - SGC - 1894 - 2m
24 N. Smith - DMAC - 1853 - 2m
25 A. Kahle - SGC - 1837
26 L. Johnson - DMAC - 1788
27 G. Nieuwoudt - SMC - 1762
28 Blake May - BERG - 1728 - 2m
29 P. Janse v Vuuren - JGC - 1709 - 2m
30 P. Joffe - BERG - 1658 - 2m
31 M. Stark - DMAC - 1619
32 J. Schmidt - BERG - 1373 - 2m
33 D. Armitage - SMC - 1233 - 2m
34 Kevin - SMC - 1075 - R
35 P. Boer - SMC - 1013 - 2m
36 R. Jacobs - JGC 1007 - 2m
37 J. Smith - JGC - 814 - 2m
38 D. Fish - JGC - 751 - 2m

Postal Comments --- February 2009

from Club Correspondents around the country

DMAC (11 pilots) Don Slatter

Although 11 pilots flew Postals, this was done in groups over 4 separate days.
On 8 February, 5 pilots flew. Other pilots were flying RES. On this day there were generally good lift conditions and no rain! Strongish breeze
On 15 February, Dennis, and Mike and Norman Smith flew. On arrival at Summerveld, the valley was filled with thick mist, but this lifted so that by 10h30 test flights were made. Conditions now seemed good so they flew their Postals.
I flew on 19 February, after the horses had left the training area. Norman came out as my timer. I had no other opportunity in the month. Weather was partly overcast and a bit windy but there was also some reasonable lift around.
Then, on the last day of the month, Saturday 28 February, Allan and Brian flew. The weather was stormy but they had to fly to get a score and there was good lift. On Allan's last flight, he was flying in heavy rain for the last 4 minutes but he was determine to finish and get a good score. There was also lightning and so he kept his Tx aerial parallel to the ground to avoid it becoming a lightning conductor! He was particularly proud of this flight as he scored maximum points despite the adverse conditions. He said no-one must say one cannot fly in rain!

SGC (5 pilots) Johan Bruwer

Johan, Joe, Axel (new member) and Gordon flew postals on Sunday 8th Feb. Fairly windy with some thermals but also big sink. Rather challenging conditions for Gordon's home built 2m plane and Axel's first attempt at flying in any competition!Johan assisted Chris the next weekend.

xMMS (6pilots) Lionel Brink

We flew at the BERG field & enjoyed conditions that varied from great fun to challenging. Flights towards late afternoon were rather difficult & thermals had to be followed very, very far downwind.

BERG (4 pilots) Piet Rheeders

Flown on the 8th of august with the conditions being very good in the morning and overcast in the after noon with difficult condition.
Like Craig I decided to fly this year’s postals with a 2m Tsotsi.

JGC (6 pilots) Juanita Smith

With the shocking weather we have had this month as well as usual commitments, most of us landed up only having one shot at it this time round, but as always . . . fun was had by all. Derrick tried his second attempt today, and although all his times were an improvement on his previous attempt, he was forced to stop after 4 flights due to rain. :-)

TRMC / SMC (4 pilots) Gert Nieuwoudt

I have flown postals with the Standerton guys. We flew on the 21st Feb on what was a very humid day. At first it looked like it would be a day with big thermals but turned out to be difficult. We flew on a farm outside Standerton, with beautiful views and wide open spaces.

ETB (2 pilots) Izak Theron / Herman Weber

Only two managed to fly at the last minute . . .

* * * *

Can correspondents please send me scores in the format I have requested many times?
Three of the six clubs sent their scores in as spreadsheets with every detail but no totals! I then have to sit with a calculator and work out their scores!

Please send me only the data I put out in the result sheet ---
Initial and name – score (both attempts please) – aircraft – section – span . . .
. . . and some comment(s) on the activity / conditions / dates

One club seems to think that the rules have reverted completely to what they were before. Only the number of attempts has reverted to two.
The A (4 scores) and B (3 scores) leagues remain as does the “fly any day” modification.

I was saddened to see that one of the more vocal opponents to the changes, who responded to the change back to two attempts with “Whoopee --- this is more like it!” didn’t manage to put in a score.

Welcome to the new Club, the Jailbirds, although I feel that name needs a little further explanation!


National RC Gliding Records

Hi everyone,

I am pleased to announce that the following Flight of Historical Significance has been ratified by the MGA:

  • F5 Open (Radio Control Flight): Aeroplane: Electrical Motor Rechargeable Sources: Distance in a straight line: 21 February 2009, Piet Rheeders, 35.1 km

Congratulations Piet!

Lionel Brink

Chairman: Model Gliding Association

National RC Gliding Records

Following review, these records have been ratified by the MGA:
  • SA National RC Gliding Postals (2008 rules): Individual Score: November 2008, Craig Goodrum, 2294 (the previous record of 2,292 was set in Nov 1998 by Craig Goodrum)
  • SA National RC Gliding Postals (2008 rules): Year total: 2008, Craig Goodrum, 6870 (the previous record of 6,833, was set in 2000 by Chris Adrian)
  • SA National RC Gliding F3B: Speed: 15.9 seconds, Dion Liebenberg @ the SA Gliding Nationals, May 2008, ETB
  • SA National RC Gliding Postals (2008 rules): Club year: 2008, MMS, 26,712 (the previous record of 20,238 was set in 2001 by SGC)
Well done to these RC pilots

March HTL report

The global financial meltdown appears to have finally affected SA: the slowdown in the building industry appears to have a knock-on affect regarding landscaping, a the resultant decline in "instant lawn" demand requiring a corresponding drastic cut in farming operations at GGGC - making the field unusable for the March HTL. Fortunately SGC (also based on a grass farm) did not appear to be affected & kindly offered the use of their field in the week preceding the competition. Although the heavy rains of previous months made the entrance road "challenging", the field was a glorious emerald green surface of smooth grass & soft (read as moist) ground. On behalf of all the pilots, we wish to thank the Silverton Glider Club for the use of their field & note that our envy was almost as green as their grass. Wow!

The typical 12 minute working 3 minute prep. format was loosely applied (2 delays were called without complaint due to line breaks & a lunch time was also used to replaced winch lines). 31 entries were received with only 1 last minute withdrawal, yielding 11 teams of approx. 3 pilots who started arriving from 07h30 , keen to fly & compete in this informal league. We started the pilots briefing approx 30 minutes after the advertised 08h30 & were only able to start the first slot at 9h45 after watching the early morning breeze swing 180 degrees from the North. This first slot saw a tight battle as just about everyone immediately swung right after launching almost immediately after working time was called. With all the pilots trying to occupy the same bit of sky simultaneously, a mid-air was inevitable: Johan's Pike Perfect & Gert's Supra were the unlucky models that clashed during this first slot with some damage to both models.

The rains mentioned previously & ongoing irrigation ensured that the ground was super soft & most models were landed up to the canopies without trying. Sadly, the ground was simply not soft enough for Don's X-Pro which appeared to suffer from a lock-out (note: this was a ppm receiver) when the model almost instantly snapped off the launch, whipped around behind the launch line & smashed itself to pieces into the ground just a metre from one of the pilots. Both tip panels suffered massive damage & the fuselage received multiple fractures & snapped in half midway between wing & fin. The battery was still connected after the flight & Don remarked that he simply did not receive any response form the model after launch. After a change of some , we continued with the round ... Don CD'ing for us (thank you Don).

The fact that the 2 metres gliders did so well, was largely due to the skill & expertise of these pilots, but the conditions were also generally favourable with abundant lift and relatively gentle breeze in what can be described as hot & relatively humid conditions. The lift was wide spread & fairly predictable, although occasionally sink did set through a slot with the resulting drops in flight time. Inevitably someone always maxed these challenging slots, resulting in huge point differentials from the normalisation. During the final round we did see some thunderclouds build up & experienced a few drops of rain, but this was over before the slot finished.
We repeated the trial of the first HTL with individuals flying 2 Metre & RES 100 models in open class & being "normalised to their respective sub-classes. This requires the pilot to compete to the full Open class 10 minute duration & the flight score is adjusted proportionally for the 8 minute RES 100 & 6 minute 2 Metre class tasks (landing points are maintained). This is then normalised as per the slot flown.

Paul Carnall simply dominated all his slots with his Nan Models v-tail X-Pro - his first round of 985 points was his throwaway, & he maxed the remaining 5 slots with very near perfect scores. Dion Liebenberg followed very (very!) closely in 2nd, with Johan Bruwer (Pike Perfect) throwing off his 1st slot midair & capturing 3rd place by an even closer margin, only a fraction of a point behind Dion! This was incredibly good flying. Craig Goodrum flying a 2 channel 2M (Tsotsi) was 4th overall flying to the Open Class rules - I can attest that he had to work for those points in a number of rounds, and this was a great example of superb flying too. 1st Junior was Jason Weber in 7th just beating his dad (hmm - who buys the models in this house?) - well done.
The RES100 & 2M categories are also normalised per class & per slot, with Craig in 1st (Tsotsi) narrowly pipping Derek (Sagitta 600) in 2nd - all three flying a proportional score in Open class. Piet was the 3rd ranked pilot with his RES100 (stretched Tsotsi) model.

Craig (Tsotsi) grabbed 1st 2M class just ahead of Derek in 2nd (Sagitta 600) - all scored on the proportional scheme. In his second only event, Derrick Fish achieved 3rd position - well done!

Thank you again to SGC for their field, to Martie for the catering & to everyone who made this such an enjoyable day. I stayed at the field until 16h30 - enoying an ice cold beverage & chatting to everyone about gliding, the universe, etc. The HTL format is considered relaxing - the focus is on flying & not challenging the support team. It provides a means of assessing & improving you skill alongside some of the best RC pilots in SA in an informal setting. I have been impressed with the number of entries - up by almost 30% from 2007/2008 - largely due to the resurgance in interest in the 2M class.

I trust that the next event scheduled for 5 April wil achieve the same level of enjoyment.

Fly safely