AMA INDOOR FREE FLIGHT NATIONALS
AMA OUTDOOR FREE FLIGHT NATIONALS & NFFS OUTDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS
ROW (Rise off Water) at the NATS
In recent years the ROW events at the Nat’s have been supported by a modest, but faithful group of flyers who usually fly other events first and then race over to the ROW pond to get in as many flights as possible. ROW is a fun event to fly and often there are as many spectators as flyers. While max outs occur, it doesn’t require a long string of maxes to compete for the top spots. I am hoping that with a little drum beating I can convince a few more (or lots more) to give ROW a try. Rise of water events are traditionally flown on Tuesday. Events include AMA ROW for any size gas model, rubber ROW for any size rubber model, one design HydroStar ROW for Holland Hornet-Cox 049/051 engines and last year Nostalgia Gas ROW was added.
Let’s start with the Hydrostar designed by Sal Taibi. A super simple 1/2A design. Plans are on Outerzone and Bob Holman still offers a short kit which includes float parts. Quick to build and easy to adjust. There was also an excellent write up in the May-June 2021 Digest by a Bob Stalick about floats for the Hydrostar. As a bonus you can also fly a Hydrostar in the AMA ROW event.
Any power model could be flown in the AMA ROW event. Today’s high powered designs which often feature less incidence and more left thrust can require careful trimming as their power pattern tends to be more of a trajectory than a pattern that allows a no push horizontal launch, but it can be made to work.
That gets us to Nostalgia Gas ROW. Nostalgia designs are a natural for ROW. they tend to fly with more incidence and less left thrust as they came from an era when ROG was often the order of the day. Popular designs like the Top Banana, Lucky Lindy, and Frisco Kiddie would work well. Or you might try a Jasco Streak or a Zeek.
At most Navy Nats the ROW event was usually held on Saturday. On Friday evenings many contestants could be seen throwing a set of floats together for one of their regular gas models. Either of this year’s one design models would be an excellent choice. I have to think there must be many retired NostalgiaI free flights laying around gathering dust that would get a new life with a set of floats. I have some special trophies ready for Nostalgia ROW. Once again, a Nostalgia ROW Model can be flown in the AMA event.
For The rubber ROW event any design from a very simple stick model to a full blown unlimited can be used. For a number of years John Debolt was very successful using a basic indoor style ROG model with foam floats. Recently Chuck Powell has won with a Miss Canada Sr. Cabin models like the Miss Canada or a Jabberwock are a good starting point. Think about adding a simple set of floats to one of your existing models. Some of the recent one design rubber models could easily handle a set of floats.
Finally, I have had an article and photos added to the NFFS technical library under ROW. This includes an excellent magazine article entitled ROW that Free Flight written by a Harry Harps. This article has info on float design, mounting floats and calculating the needed float size for various weight models. Please check out this information. There is plenty of food for thought. It should answer lots of questions.
I hope some flyers will decide to give ROW a try or at least stop by to see what it’s all about and be inspired.