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Old May 24, 2011, 05:36 PM
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I thought the AMA was supposed to be defending our rights not trying to shut us down?? This is very disappointing.

I thought the article was fairly light and even handed. The AMA just threw in the fear mongering element. Are we a thorn in the AMA's side?
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Old May 24, 2011, 07:39 PM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
Mesa, Arizona
Joined Nov 2006
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If all you can see of this issue is the FPV side then what is occurring it isn't going to make much sense like the world is moving in a different direction. At question is the use of US airspace by unmanned aircraft and there are many powerful stakeholders that will influence the outcome. The general public impression of "nice video" isn't going to buy much in the general aviation crowd much less FAA and commercial aviation. Quite the contrary some videos posted have done just the opposite. This is simply reality and the chance to change the conclusion is IMO long since past which we can partially collectively blame on ourselves.
AMA's actions are explainable if you understand the gravity of the situation, what they are trying to protect and what could be the worse result if their negotiations with FAA fail.

For sure it isn't too late to make it worse but that is another story and some people are already working on that. I wish that wringing hands and praying would make it all better and be my guest if you want to try.

Maybe sticking our heads in the sand will delay the inevitable or maybe we should be looking for someone else to blame.

I hope we are excluded for FAA regulations but then I also hope I will live forever.
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Old May 24, 2011, 09:19 PM
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I sure hope I just didn't blow 2 grand for nothing.
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Old May 24, 2011, 11:51 PM
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Yumastan RCAPA.NET
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They have seen the trappy video and multiply people have asked them to clamp down on him. Don't hold your breath... what about the Daily drone and the CNN Drone, and all of the other operators going absolutely nuts. Keystone cop enforcement would be an improvement.
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Old May 25, 2011, 02:23 AM
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In my opinion, there never really was a compromise position on amateur FPV
offered by the AMA despite what some people have claimed.

How many FPV pilots in the US (or anywhere in the world for that matter) *always* fly
with 1. a spotter and 2. on a buddy box with the visual pilot on the main controller
who can take control at *any* time during the flight and 3. always within pure VLOS
range? (must meet all three criteria to satisfy AMA's rules)
I'll bet I could count em on the fingers of one hand, and maybe have a few left over.
I know of several people who claim to be following the AMA rules now but are not really,
as they simply do not or can not always satisfy all of those conditions.
The AMA's position on FPV was never realistic, and thus is almost as good as
no option at all. Akin to being given a bicycle with training wheels and nowhere to
ride it and then being told we should feel lucky to have that. Meanwhile, when several hundred
2.4Ghz transmitters are allowed on at once producing multiple lockouts and big fast
plane crashes at huge AMA sanctioned events, is apparently not a big deal. But an
article that talks about FPV piloting beyond VLOS (generally far from people) or without a
buddy box is *really bad*. Since the AMA is the only ongoing representation we've ever
had to the FAA, it's not surprising that the FAA would offer nothing better.

There's no reasonable middle ground offered. There never was. When the FAA's
new sUAS regs come I predict that the only legal option for true amateur non-licensed pilots will be to
fly under the AMA's rules (if we're "lucky"), most likely only at a typical AMA R/C power field
(pick the most boring, flat place you can think of, then put a slab of concrete on it).
The majority of FPV pilots will simply ignore that option and continue flying as they do
today, so we'll all become outlaws in the eyes of the FAA regardless of whether we do
it safely. That's the sign of a bad law, when no reasonable person will follow it.
The FAA used try to avoid that sort of thing. Not surprising coming from an insurance company though.

As for the other stakeholders in the NAS, their opinions are based mostly on irrational
fear, at best no science, and at worst very bad science.

ian
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Old May 25, 2011, 07:04 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
Mesa, Arizona
Joined Nov 2006
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Best case has been known for a long time to be AMA oversight, nothing new there. The only thing that has changed recently is the Senate amendment to H.R. 658 explained in post #207 which is a long shot at best.

Of more importance at this point IMO is the worse case outcome as we still have a chance to negatively alter what is in process. Enough bad publicity at FAA could pull the rag out from under what little protection we have.

FAA could decide that AMA is incapable of oversight responsibilities and dump model aviation in with the sUAS regulations.

-or-

AMA could rescind rule 550 which allows FPV because they decide it is causing them more problems than it is worth. That would also mean FPV falls into sUAS.
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Old May 25, 2011, 10:44 AM
Fly FPV, sleep; repeat
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Germantown, MD
Joined Mar 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Evans View Post
FAA could decide that AMA is incapable of oversight responsibilities and dump model aviation in with the sUAS regulations.

-or-

AMA could rescind rule 550 which allows FPV because they decide it is causing them more problems than it is worth. That would also mean FPV falls into sUAS.
Sounds like either way we're screwed.

We're not the only ones under fire though. The guys flying the BIG gasser models are in the spotlight. So are turbines. I consider those to be a FAR BIGGER safety concern than your typical 3 pound FPV foamy. Of course, I'm probably just preaching to the choir here though, as I'm sure everyone else would agree.

Interesting tidbit... There was recently (well, last year I guess) a turbine crash at a local flying club. The guy was flying a turbine jet off a grass strip (!) in the middle of a corn field. Hmm... Sound like a disaster waiting to happen? Yup. He lost complete control of the plane during a vertical ascent maneuver. As you can imagine, it came crashing down, exploding into a giant fireball in the middle of the corn field. The fire department was called and an hour later a huge portion of the corn field had been burned to a crisp. I believe the club had to pay the farm for damages and it also made the local news.
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Old May 25, 2011, 11:42 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinturbostang View Post
Sounds like either way we're screwed.

We're not the only ones under fire though. The guys flying the BIG gasser models are in the spotlight. So are turbines. I consider those to be a FAR BIGGER safety concern than your typical 3 pound FPV foamy. Of course, I'm probably just preaching to the choir here though, as I'm sure everyone else would agree.

Interesting tidbit... There was recently (well, last year I guess) a turbine crash at a local flying club. The guy was flying a turbine jet off a grass strip (!) in the middle of a corn field. Hmm... Sound like a disaster waiting to happen? Yup. He lost complete control of the plane during a vertical ascent maneuver. As you can imagine, it came crashing down, exploding into a giant fireball in the middle of the corn field. The fire department was called and an hour later a huge portion of the corn field had been burned to a crisp. I believe the club had to pay the farm for damages and it also made the local news.

The turbines are about the only reason I go to the local AMA field and they are likely on the hit list. Unfortunate! However the speed that some fly could put they outside of visual control within seconds and they sure as hell would hurt could hurt you. My vision is pretty good and they are making turns at a distance that I couldn't determine the planes attitude so it had to be at the edge of what they could see. My local field has a nice cyclone fence in front of the onlookers but it wouldn't have any affect on a plane coming straight down. Last year one clipped a tree on the turn to final and cartwheeled into small pieces right in front of the crowd.
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Old May 25, 2011, 01:22 PM
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The whole deal stinks! It comes down to this... During the ARC the ATC rep said "we're writing the model regs" At that point I was in full alarm mode.
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Old May 26, 2011, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
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The whole deal stinks! It comes down to this... During the ARC the ATC rep said "we're writing the model regs" At that point I was in full alarm mode.
Just convince them that over private property under 500 feet they can't tell me what I can and cannot fly. Its my flipping airspace, not theirs.
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Old May 26, 2011, 09:29 AM
FPV Desert Beta Test Center
Mesa, Arizona
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Originally Posted by BushmanLA View Post
Just convince them that over private property under 500 feet they can't tell me what I can and cannot fly. Its my flipping airspace, not theirs.
This is what your looking for.
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Old May 26, 2011, 09:34 AM
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The FAA contends that they control it all.
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Old May 26, 2011, 11:28 AM
Fly FPV, sleep; repeat
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So I guess I need to check with them before I play baseball with my son. After all, I'm using THEIR airspace.
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Old May 26, 2011, 11:50 AM
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I know.. the whole deal is ridiculous. I thought the Airspace (natural resource) belongs to the people???
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Old May 26, 2011, 02:54 PM
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Lakewood, Colorado
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While I don't think we have any real chance of influencing the process positively at
this point, I will say that when it comes time for public comment I think we should
remember to use the phrase "unnecessary or burdensome regulation" as much
as possible. Remember both the GOP and Obama administration have recently made
calls to eliminate "unnecessary regulation".
In fact here's a new story, only 2 hours old.
http://thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch...me-regulations

When you write your legislators, when you talk to people in the media, or your
friends and family or even other R/C enthusiasts who are not sympathetic to FPV,
simply point out that attempting to enforce FAA regulations affecting tens of thousands
of amateur modelers is a waste of government resources and taxpayer dollars and
does nothing to create jobs or stimulate the economy.

ian
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