AMA rules for flight duration and the Cat 1 LPP record

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  • #41746
    Olbill
    Participant

    I apologize if you’re seeing this in other places but I’m trying to find out how many people are aware of this and whether something should be done to correct it:

    Today I was made aware of a mind blowing loophole (my words) in the AMA rules for indoor duration models. I have always understood that the AMA rules specify that for a hand launched model the flight ends when the model “comes to rest on the floor of the building” which is further clarified as “belly down”. In my experience this has always meant that a model skipping along the floor at the end of a flight is still considered airborne and the timing continues until the prop stops and the model is completely stopped on the floor.

    Now it has been brought to my attention that this rule can also be used at the BEGINNING of a flight. A model can be launched so that the prop is hitting the floor, which for some length of time can prevent the model from becoming completely airborne. Under the AMA rule the model would be considered flying and timing would start at the moment of release and continue until the model was completely stopped and belly down on the floor.

    For me one of the great mysteries of indoor records has always been how a limited penny plane can fly for 16 minutes in a Cat 1 site. It is the opinion of some people that the technique described above is how it was done. Adding credence to this idea is that the model was named “Skipper”. If this is true then can this really be called flying? Have hundreds of people built copies of this model thinking it was the state of the art in LPP design without ever understanding what really took place when the record was set?

    I would like to propose that the AMA rules be changed to be in agreement with the FAI rule that says the flight ends when “the model touches the floor of the building”. I’d be interested in hearing opinions about such a change.

    #51729
    George Reinhart
    Participant

    If you think it’s a good idea, initiate a rules change proposal and find out if the idea has legs.

    #51730
    Robert Dunham II
    Participant

    I agree Bill. I had unfortunate luck back at 1982 Lincoln NATS flying ROG Cabin in being clocked off twice at approx. 10 seconds into flight when ship stalled on launch, tailsliding onto ground but still having forward momentum to keep on flying. I had to balloon the plane down to stop the flight when the timer informed me that my flight terminated when it hit the ground. The CD ruled the timer was correct and I lost two flights when ship did same thing twice. 🙁 Finally got off a decent flight.

    #51731
    Olbill
    Participant

    If you take this idea to its logical extreme then a model that never actually became airborne at all would be timed until it “came to rest”. If such a flight were submitted for a record there would be absolutely no controversy about the legality since there is nothing in the record submission that requires a description of the flight.

    #51732
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi Bill,

    I hadn’t heard that description of Warren’s Cat I LPP flight. You might want to talk to Steve Brown about it. He was onsite during the record.

    #51733
    Olbill
    Participant

    @FlyF1D wrote:

    Hi Bill,

    I hadn’t heard that description of Warren’s Cat I LPP flight. You might want to talk to Steve Brown about it. He was onsite during the record.

    Regardless of how the record was set the problem remains that such a “flight” would be legal under the AMA rules. FAI rules and BMFA rules both specify that a flight ends when a model touches the floor. I think it would be a good move to bring AMA rules in line with the rest of the world on this issue. For one thing it would simplify timing at events where there is a mixture of FAI and AMA events if you didn’t have to tell your timer which rule to follow when the model lands.

    #51734
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    That’s a pretty huge loophole. That isn’t flying. I think the indoor committee should specify what flying is and make flights end when the prop touches like the FAI rules.

    #51735
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I think the ending of a flight being when the model comes to rest is very good. Here in Albany Oregon we have several obsticles that make this part work well. i.e. coming to rest upon the retracted bleachers. The part of the rule that does not work IMHO is when an airplane, such as a mini stick, flutters and stalls a few times then touches the floor, this should be considered the end of the flight. The rules should state that launching an airplane in such a manor as to repeatedly touch a stationary object, such as the floor is prohibited.

    George

    #51736
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Synchronizing the AMA rule with the FAI version certainly has appeal.

    The proper established path for this is to submit a rules change proposal to the contest board.

    You are on it, Bill, so you already have one vote done 🙂

    #51737
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Yes Jim Clem and I once thought one could rack up quite a bit of time with a THREE bladed prop… Loved the way Jim could sniff out a weakly worded rule !

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