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5 Mistakes You Should Avoid at the Field

Our hobby is supremely fun and rewarding, but it can also be dangerous and cause damage. Here's a list of 5 mistakes you should avoid to make your flying successful and most of all safe...

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Avoid these 5 Mistakes for a better Flight Experience

Our hobby is supremely fun and rewarding, but it can also be dangerous and cause damage. Here's a list of 5 mistakes you should avoid to make your flying successful and most of all safe. This is not an exhaustive list, so please hit the reply button below and tell us what your mistakes to avoid are.

1. Flying Into The Sun

I'm sure it has happened to most of us at one point or another. You fly right into the sun and lose sight of your plane. It can temporarily blind you and by the time your eyes adjust back you can't find your model and it has crashed. Even with good sunglasses on, it is still hard to see a plane flying in the path of the sun. Just don't do it!

2. Flying Over the Pits

This is certainly a faux pas at any club field. There should be an established flight line that the aircraft do not cross where other pilots and spectators can safely watch from. If you have a control failure or mechanical issue and the plane veers off over that line (it happens more often than you'd think), then do your best to get the plane away from people and property. You should sacrifice the plane before endangering others. We call it "putting it in."

3. Flying Against the Pattern

If you are the only one flying then the sky is your oyster. As more and more planes fill the air like at events, then a flight pattern should be established. Usually this would be a circle pattern with the close pass to the flight stations going upwind and the far side of the circle would be heading downwind. Never fly against the pattern (flying downwind down the runway) as this has a high potential of causing a mid air collision.

4. Flying at the Crowd

This actually applies to real airplanes at airshows and is a good rule of thumb for us r/c guys too. You should never fly a plane towards a crowd of people. Your turns should be made going away so you can avoid doing this. If you are flying at a crowd and lose the radio signal or something happens (anything can happen) the plane has a high chance of hitting someone. That would ruin your day.

5. Hand Catching Your Quad

There are lots of videos of people doing this, but it is a very dangerous activity. You're putting your flesh and your face in close proximity to spinning props. Those props are very sharp and have enough power to sever a finger or worse. Please find a better way to land that doesn't put you at risk. If you look at the risk vs reward ratio it's a no brainer. The risk is insanely high for zero reward in doing it. Stay safe out there folks.

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Old Jun 10, 2015, 11:20 AM
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Another mistake I think people often forget about is to always check control surface deflections before you takeoff to ensure everything is not only working properly, but that they are moving in the correct directions. Always do your preflight to make sure the airplane is flight worthy and can be controlled as best as your skills can allow for. Make sure your control surfaces are tight, linkages are good, and your wings are securely attached/bolted to the airplane. Things like this can save you a lot of time and hassles- I can recall several instances not that long ago where someone was anxious to get their model airborne that they forgot to do a simple inspection and either lost a wing bolt or a linkage or lost the airplane entirely because a control surface moved the wrong direction.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 11:53 AM
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Clearly Enrique Iglesias should have read Jason's article earlier
Enrique Iglesias Bloody Drone Accident (2 min 41 sec)
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 11:57 AM
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When I was a kid, we had knowledge of machinery. We respected electricity and fire and we really respected rotating power equipment. Why are kids not being taught this any more? I don't understand how a grown man could be so ignorant?
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 01:05 PM
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I was camping over Memorial at a crowded camp ground. I watched an adult let his little kid catch his 350 size quad over and over again . I cringed every time he did it. People just don't understand how much power and torque these little motors have. I've seen it first hand at the field. A guy was carrying a small P-38 lightning AXI 2212 3s 1300mah powered by the fuse. He hit the throttle stick with his leg. It cut his fore arm so deep. He still doesn't have full strength in his hand two years later. I see people plugging in batteries and carrying armed airplanes, with there wrists, fingers and arms right in harms way every time I'm at the field.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 01:31 PM
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I learned first hand many years ago.....got a finger in the prop of an old Astro 05, there is still some blood droplets on the ceiling at my folks house (if you look very closely) and a scar that I see every day.

My 7 year old use to race my Ladybird which I was fine with but he now always asks if he can race my Dialfonzo Quadmini in the backyard. Even though it only has 1811 motors on it it scares me if something went wrong....even those tiny motors could take out an eye if you were unlucky.

Cheers,
Jim
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 03:42 PM
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I don't understand why anyone is willing to risk their hand and face "catching" their quad. It's such a dumb thing to do and a bunch of idiots are posting videos and pictures on how to do it.... ugh end of rant...
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 03:49 PM
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Number 6: Never fly over people or built up area

you see this all over youtube and they think its ok, one guy had a horn on his plane to let people know he was over head, he was to lazy to fly around them and brag about his plane being safe
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 03:53 PM
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If you are counting on your AMA insurance to back you up, then you should understand what item 7 of the AMA Safety Code says.

7. Under no circumstances may a pilot or other person touch an outdoor model aircraft in flight while it is still under power, except to divert it from striking an
individual.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 03:55 PM
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the newbees do all 5 of them with their quads.... there is a need for some education for these guys... because they are the ones who are giving us all a bad name
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasmine2501 View Post
When I was a kid, we had knowledge of machinery. We respected electricity and fire and we really respected rotating power equipment. Why are kids not being taught this any more? I don't understand how a grown man could be so ignorant?
You have the internet to thank for that. Anyone can find the answer to anything, or instructions on how to do it. Anyone. This means that morons now think they are geniuses because they can find all of the answers.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 04:14 PM
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How about getting insurance ? Especially if you are flying over personal property or close to people.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 04:23 PM
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In addition to flying a proper pattern,another good practice is to taxi the aircraft in a predictable pattern also.Like our full scale aviator cousins,aircraft follow a parallel path along side the runway and make 90 degree turns until ready to take off. A slow taxi speed helps too.

Even after landing, one can do the same after exiting the runway to taxi back to the flight line.I like to use this method at our club especially since it's a grass field with limited markings.

In handling electric planes and copters most of our guys try to keep all of our body away from the props when connecting the motor battery.For example, an aerobatic plane I fly I'll take a tachometer reading with the plane restrained during a pre take off run up.After arming the system, the RPMs are monitored directly behind the prop arch and then taxi out.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 04:39 PM
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Another one

Overhand launching a pusher-prop plane e.g. Zagi etc. unless you want the back of your hand to like the gills of a fish.

Especially when you’re alone at the field as a fellow flyer did one time.
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Old Jun 10, 2015, 04:53 PM
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1. Flying Into The Sun

I'm sure it has happened to most of us at one point or another. You fly right into the sun and lose sight of your plane. It can temporarily blind you and by the time your eyes adjust back you can't find your model and it has crashed. Even with good sunglasses on, it is still hard to see a plane flying in the path of the sun. Just don't do it!

Exactly what happened when I lost my first sport cub.
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