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Old Jul 01, 2015, 04:30 AM
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Park Flying Size and safety

I was just wondering what peoples views were on park flying in regard to the size of the heli being flown ?
Most of our heli's ,even 80's have the potential to do some halm if flown into someone and the larger you go(or higher head speed) the greater the danger .
So where do we draw the line ,I'm guessing the law might also be an issue with this .
Personally I'm not going to fly anything bigger than a v120d02s or a 130x possibly a 180cfx but that's borderline because of the head speed .
So what's everbodys view ?
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Old Jul 01, 2015, 11:46 AM
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IMHO, there are some variables involved here. For example how heavily used is your park? We have the great fortune of many wonderful parks in our community, with a few receiving less traffic than others. On many week days the traffic is virtually nill, making it a great day to fly. On a soccer size field with no foot traffic a 450 doesn't seem out of line. Add civilians and all bets are off. I'm comfortable flying my 200 SRX at the park, off to the area less traveled. Most of the time people will respect us and stay their distance, but you will sometimes get those who don't and will come over seemingly just to ruin your day, lots of wide open space on the other side, yet have to be right where you are. I doubt I'll every fly anything other than the 200 at the park.
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 12:18 AM
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I fly mostly at home....or at hole 2 of the Country Club when golfers are absent. Imo, it is not safe to fly over people, they either have to be beside you or slightly in back of you....Once I was flying a brand new Hotenx quad in a parking lot, lost power due to faulty lipo adapter cables to quad, and slightly dented top roof of car. It was so embarrasing to go inside the restaurant asking who the owner was of the car....then, I had to explain, pay for what I thought it would take to fix damage...and of course, gave the lady owner my name address etc. if fixing expense was over what I had given her...lesson learned! Very embarrasing but lucky it had not been a person....you are quite right in your thinking....180 size tops......in park....trying to hit hours of least traffic....
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 12:59 AM
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I have several nice Parks close. One real close and if there are few people fly.
Bunch of kids roaming around then wait. I can fly at home or in park that I live also. The Public park has grass and more open area to fly. I was bit my V120 when i let it get behind me and stuck in side. . It stung pretty good for a few hours. thats a pretty small bird.. 250 or even worse 450 is going to do some real hurt. Bigger I hate to even think on what they could do. Much better to be safe then sorry lader.
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 01:01 AM
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I fly mainly at home or mum and dads place. If I go to a park I use one near home where its rarely got people around. If there are people I just go back home. Size of the heli or quad doesn't matter to me.
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 03:06 AM
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I already draw the line at MiniCP size when it comes to CP, as their headspeed and sharp blades, plus higher top speed, can already have an impact. With the quads, I am more comfortable, as the small props are less likely to do damage, and some also have prop guards. Small FP helis I also have less trouble with flying in a park, as these have lower headspeed, and limited FFF. Plus if you let go off the sticks, it will stop, with a CP it will continue heading and speed. so a transmitter glitch will have more impact.
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 03:50 AM
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That all pretty much tally's with my own views , I live in a fairly small village ,the local park is rarely heavily used except for the play ground area and I fly well away from there ,its mostly just a few dog walkers and as a dog owner I either keep clear completely or land as dogs can be unpredictable .
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 04:35 AM
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Don’t want to be a doom and gloomer but I personally will not and do not fly anywhere ‘public’ and to be honest I frown on people who do.

The reasons are 2 fold, firstly, not really important but relevant, it just distracts me when you get the inevitable “wow mister, how high can you fly, do a loop, do they crash, how much does one cost, my uncle has one that is 3 times the size of yours and he once flew it straight through the windows of a passing car’ (you can insert any BS that you have heard here). It is not that I can’t fly and chat it’s mostly just the crap that Joe Public spouts.

The second (and far more important) reason is that you CANNOT claim to be flying safely when outsiders are wondering around. They are unaware of how dangerous ANY model can be and as such will not react accordingly. At a club field even ‘strangers’ will be more or less focusing on what is happening in the air, hopefully everybody will be grouped in one area and as such someone will quickly become aware if (when) something goes wrong, which it WILL.

I know that this will sound snobbish and childish but in today’s world pretty much anyone can cheaply acquire a model which is capable of taking to the air (years ago the chances of a beginner actually getting airborne were quite slim) and what goes up must come down. Incidents will happen when flying, be they mechanical failures or pilot error it doesn’t matter, the result will be a model crashing, period. A model that crashes represents a danger to those around and ‘outsiders’ will be far more at risk.

Following on, ANY negative publicity will go towards restricting our hobby regardless of which country you are in which ultimately will affect me……….

There is currently a backlash against ‘Multirotors’ which is threatening our hobby. Why? Because every tom Dick or Harry with a few bob in their wallet can buy one and start flying any and everywhere and I see a parallel here. Joe Public views Multirotors as an invasion of his privacy in the first instance and might not appreciate how dangerous they are when anything goes wrong. He may be wrong about it but the damage is being done none the less. There have been incidents where bystanders have been injured (and even killed) but luckily the press has only picked up on such cases locally (to date). I wonder how long I would be flying my models after a YouTube video of a child being maimed or even killed by a crashing model whilst playing in the park goes viral????????

Sorry Guys, nothing personal and no disrespect to your flying skills but to me Park Fliers are putting my hobby at risk and endangering innocent passersby. Join a club and enjoy the comrade or use land which is well away from anywhere public.

I know that this is pretty controversial and that many of you out there are hitting the ‘Reply’ button to ‘educate’ me as to why they fly in parks and probably to start giving examples of how shooting guns, flying kites, baking cakes or keeping poisonous reptiles are also perfectly safe but this post is about MY hobby and these are my views. Sorry, whatever justification you may think that you have does not alter the facts which I have stated or change the conclusion.

Please read, digest, think and do or say whatever you see fit, but PLEASE, do it SAFELY……

Paul
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 05:26 AM
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Hi PaulB ,I think you bring up valid points that we all have to consider ,in fact I was arguing your side on another forum for my other hobby "Airsoft"( a simulated combat game like paintball) where the question was asked if we considered the use of a quad ( drone) would be cheating to witch my answer was no but its not safe at all as you need to consider the worst case scenario of it crashing into someone under power ,a lot of people just did not get the picture of what 4 brushless motors could do.
My view is that smaller heli's in a quiet park can be a manageable risk as long as you land or stay well away when other people are present ,I tend to fly with my back to a hedge with a view of the whole park in front of me so nobody can walk up behind me but that's not always possible.
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Old Jul 02, 2015, 01:38 PM
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AMA even has insurance for Park flyers. Many plank foamies are sold with big banner Park flyer. Park Zone etc. Valid about folks as distraction. Plus silly Questions that get asked. Very true about clueless folks with $$ go buy something to fly with Zero skill or know how.
Most of us do not live on Farm/ Ranch or home out in boonies. So Park/ School yard/ parking lot are go to fly area. We can not stop the fools . Like moron and White house lawn deal. I seen vid guy flying 3 cell quad fly over his very youing daughter/ fly into home over his wife and landed Quad in dinning room table with Grandma sitting a few feet away. Plus guy was Drunk!! Point is there are out there. Seen another guy flying T-Rex 500e in living room and people watching close by.
I see anybody even close to me 450's go back in car. Smaller birds go into al. cases. They depart I fly. They stay I depart.
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Old Jul 03, 2015, 02:43 AM
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@PaulB....very valid, reasonable points in your post. Absolutely no criticism or arguments on my part. What you do almost reduces risk to zero...one still has to be careful not to get hit with the heli, quad etc. that one is flying. I guess I am lucky to be able to fly up to 450 size at home, even though I lost my best airspace to two large corrals I made for my wonderful friends, my dogs....I take great care in not putting them at risk....and still have two areas left to go airborne...on the plus side, I think I have only been hit by a 922 in the living room....minor hit in leg...no pain, no blood....
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Old Jul 03, 2015, 05:34 AM
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Even the little ones can bite , I had a bad tail motor on my wasp nano cpx and it would still start if I flicked it round ,unfortunately I was not careful enough and my finger passed through the main blades , I got three parallel cuts on the side of my finger ,worse I was at the park and bleeding ,I had to use insulating tape to patch myself up .
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Old Jul 03, 2015, 09:19 AM
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With respect for each point of view, I think it's a matter of looking for 100% safety, or reasonable safety. 100% would mean no model airshows, unless the public is watching from a plexiglass bunker or so, only flying in the park when there is no one else, and having a couple of spotters, that can contact the pilot as soon as a pedestrian approaches, appearing to be entering the park.

I think 100% safety is barely useful, that would be almost like learning a kid how to ride a bike, but getting him or her so wrapped up in protective materials, that the kid can't move arms or feet, and can't even get on the bike anymore.

But reducing extra risk, sounds more practical to me. There is a big difference between hovering a class 700 heli right above a playground with toddlers, and flying a 18 gram quadcopter with prop guards over an open field, with no one within close distance of the flying object. If there is a grownup watching me fly, standing a few metres behind me, that feels pretty safe to me. To reach him, the quad would first have to get through me, more or less. Things change when it's a kid watching, and there is a chance he or she will rush forward to play. If possible, fly at moments when there are no or few people.
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Old Jul 03, 2015, 09:30 AM
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Can't find a thing to disagree with, Paul. And do virtually the same as Dankar. I've noticed most young people walking around with earbuds or looking at their phone, say hi to one some time, not a sound from them. Distracted people doing everyday things is a huge concern for me, not only at the park but driving or on the motorbike. Even flying in my front yard, if there's any traffic of any kind down she goes until the all clear. We both are AMA members.
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Old Jul 08, 2015, 02:53 AM
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Safety doesn't hurt. Even a small 100 size c/p has blades spinning at high rpm.
Even those micro Quads those motors really buzz as direct drive. I have one Lage heli 500 size. That has twice the power of my 450's. The difference is quite dramatic . I will not fly that if anybody is around at all.
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