Competition in Gas Powered Events, AMA gas, and F1C

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    Hi Pete Reinhart

    Regarding F1C

    I was at Sierra Cup and watched the F1C flyoff. Eugene Verbitsky went first and put up a nice 7 1/2 minute flight. Artem Babenko flew his folder next. It was awesome as it got 200 feet higher than Eugenes, and flipped the wing tips out to go into an equally beautiful glide. It DTd at 9:45, but still was over 10 minutes to the ground making the max.

    I heard that Artem had 5 folding models with and sold maybe 2, one to Ed Carroll.

    My feeling is that I would love to see those models fly again. I don’t care if they are someone else’s model who is beating me. I will choose to fly what I fly, and having fun is the only criteria. That is the fallicy of all of the power events. Everyone thinks they need a different event that their model will be competitive in.

    I have finally talked my club into scrubbing the classic power events. We don’t have enough flyers to man the events the way it is. As far as the national cup, we will just rack up points in AMA gas. I will probably do most of my flying in the large AMA gas events with Nostalgia Models, and will win most contests here with those models.

    Best regards

    Dave Edmonson

    Good luck this weekend! Wish I was going to be there!

    Bill Shailor

    I’ve noticed the same problem with entries at our Inter-Cities meet. Very few AMA and/or Classic gas flyers show up.
    This is particularly troubling given the fact that many live nearby.
    I’ve invited suggestions as to what may boost participation and also invited criticism as to what might help.
    No response. Nothing.
    It is to the point we are considering not having these events since even awarding National Cup points doesn’t seem to bring out the flyers.
    This would hurt the few who do fly AMA gas at our meet, but there comes a point where it is hard to justify holding an event where only one or two modelers enter and fly.
    I’ve noticed this drop in participation at other meets as well, and it seems primarily in the AMA gas events.
    So, gas flyers out there..What would you like to see for events?

    Dean McGinnes

    I personally think we will see a rebirth in gas flying with Classic Gas, your own experience notwithstanding.

    The same simple flying that Nostalgia has produced will eventually cause several who don’t want to fiddle with a VIT-Bunter will fly Classic, many with Nostalgia models.

    I had no desire to fly AMA Gas and was happy with my T-Birds. Now, Classic beckons. Here, designers can do their own thing within the rules, and modern engines can be used. The simplicity of Nostalgia with less restrictions.

    Bob Mattes’ Classical Gas shows the way, and Pearls and Astrostars are competitive.

    Classicial Flyers unite! You have nothing to lose but your Seligs!!! 😆 😆 😆


    I totally agree with Dean.

    In the UK 1/2A almost became extinct when .049 F1J’s took over.

    Open Power now has only a small following, FAI power about the same and declining…

    However ‘Slow Power’ – an approximate equivalent of Classic though a
    little more restrictive on engine sizes and requiriung plain bearings, is very popular and an associated class (‘Brit Power’ for 1.5cc diesels) has a strong following.

    There’s a strong future for Classic in the USA, even if not in your particular region at this time.


    I disagree with the classic proponents.

    You should be building the models that give you the most pleasure building and flying. The goal is not to win, but to have fun flying gas powered models.

    You do not need to build a VIT bunter to have fun flying AMA gas, or the FAI gas events. Sure you may not win the big meets, but you are having fun.

    If there are 30 entries at the NATS in a power event, who is not having fun flying the event even if they come in dead last?

    Fly your T-Birds in AMA gas or F1J gas and rejoice at how competitive you still are flying a 50 year old design! I flew my modified T-Bird in the last 2 NATS in F1J, came in 5th in 2004, and if I had not given it a couple bad tosses this year, would have made the flyoffs.

    So anyway my contention is that you don’t need a special event if it means that there are so many events that you can’t fly them all!

    My problem with AMA gas, Classic Gas, and NOS gas, is that if you want to be competitive you have to spend all day flying one event to try and get your 10 boring maxes to place! This is probably the reason why the power events are declining. If there were a flyoff the following morning there may be more excitement.

    Dean McGinnes

    Dave, your last comment bears further study.

    In the “old” days we flew for three 5 minute maxes, with an unlimited flyoff. You got your maxes in and moved to another event. Usually, the flyoff qualifiers got together the last hour or so before sunset and let fly!

    I remember a fine chase through the streets of Miami with Jim Bradley and I in the back of a red Caddy piloted by Gerry Ritz. We were after his C Gasser which seemed to have a foot of DT fuse on the rear.

    This is probably impossible now on Cat-III fields, but an early morning “supermax” may be a possible solution. For the last day of a meet, the flyoff would have to come at mid-day.

    At least one’s model would be “risked” only once per contest, rather than having to make multiple trips off the field or into the trees.

    This concept should be kicked around.


    Not sure why we have this discussion on the FAI discussion section, but let me offer some thoughts. Could the decline in the participation in some of the AMA events in general be due to the number of contests conducted at Muncie? With the cost of gas this summer, many people limited their travel. Selecting only a few contests to attend (such as the Nats which I believe had record attendance). In addition if the weather forecast raises any doubt you are more likely to avoid the long trip and save the money. These were some of the concerns that I heard during the season.

    So to try and answer Bill’s question on how to fix the problem. I am not sure. It seems like every contest has 3 days of events to try and meet the needs of the National Cup. Do we have too many events? and has it diluted the competition? I don’t fly all these events, but I do manage a contest each year that has the it has resulted in many cases to only have 2 – 4 competitors in each event, even on nice weather days.


    This probably should have been posted in one of the general categories, but it started out as a little rundown on the Sierra Cup, and why one would not fly F1C, and why a simple power event such as Classic meets the needs of someone who does not want to build an auto surface model.

    My contention is and was that you get more participation with a broader event. In this case, with the exception of rounds, FAI power is the broadest, AMA power the next, classic gas the least, and NOS gas restricted to the time period.

    So a person may take a NOS gas model, and fly it in a FAI event if they so choose, and will enjoy the competition. They could also fly it in classic power or AMA gas. However, FAI events do require rounds and are not conducive to a typical AMA contest. The FAI events also eliminate the so called BOM rule, so cannot be flown in AMA events unless built by the modeler.

    So trimming down events at a contest, would probably combine AB and CD gas at a larger meet, or maybe go ABCD gas at smaller meets, and keep NOS gas as a separate category. Eliminating Classic gas means that there would be more people flying the normal power events. As far as inginuity, a person can use their talents to make any class of model, and they don’t need a simple event like classic to do that.

    But the key to getting more participation is to get people out of the mindset that they must have a competitive model, or they will refuse to fly. If that were the case, you would only have one person flying an event and he would be Artem Babenko with his awesome F1C folder.

    I personally am making a F1C model and have no delusions that it will compete with Eugene Verbitsky or Artem, but it will be one heck of a lot of fun if I don’t dork it early on!

    So we should renew this conversation on another forum since FAI events are not compatible with AMA contest events, but are linked only by the pleasure to fly all of them in friendly competition, and hopefully with enough participating modelers for all of them.

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