Thread Tools
Aug 26, 2014, 04:42 PM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

SVSS 25th Anniversary Thread

Congratulations to SVSS for 25 years of RC glider contesting and flying fun. If you are an early SVSS member (i.e. if you're really old ) then this thread is the place to share your pictures and recollections from the early years of SVSS. This club has lots of interesting history so please feel free to recount some of your early SVSS experiences.

Chris B.
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Aug 26, 2014, 05:12 PM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

My early flying years and SVSS...

I tend to keep receipts and paperwork far too long but it turned out to be a nice walk through memory lane going through my files. The earliest receipt in my RC soaring folder dates back to November of 1993. The purchase was from Dave's RC Hobbies (used to be on El Camino just off I-80) and even though receipts from that popular RC hobby hangout were not spelled out in words I'm positive it was a purchase of an Oly-650 glider kit (yes you had to actually assemble the whole plane), a JR transmitter, and 3 other items. At this point SVSS had been around for about 4 years but I still didn't know the club existed.

So I took the kit home and without any outside help I put the thing together with some help from my oldest son Anton, then set up the JR TX as best as I could, and finally took it to a local school field on a rainy Saturday afternoon for a trial flight. To be honest I had no idea what I was doing. Anyway my boys and I did our first hand toss and could not believe how far the thing went before narrowly missing the monkey bars on the far end of that little school yard.

I remember figuring out how to use a high start to get the Oly up in the air, barely. Someone at Dave's RC Hobbies had said that Ancil Hoffman Park was a good place to fly so I gave it a try. When I arrived I remember seeing another pilot (who I later learned was Carl Otto, one of SVSS' better pilots back then) who had set up a winch and was flying a plane that was a heck of a lot more streamlined than my Oly. He was doing amazing launches and had such good control, I couldn't believe it. So I just watched for half an hour until he packed up and left. I was too shy to bug him (yeah, hard to believe huh?). So after he had left I set up my high start and on my first launch my Oly "found" the nearest tree. Crap. After recovering the plane--with a few rips in the monocote--I could see I was going to need some help.

So I went back to Dave's and remember being told that there was a club that flew out of Davis on the weekends so I went out there with fingers crossed. Now to be honest I don't remember too many details from my first visits but this I do remember: I was doing most things "wrong" and it was a miracle I even got the plane flying on my own. So began the process of hooking up with the early club members, getting some much needed help, and getting to know everyone.

As you can see in one of the pics below in the early years SVSS didn't have onsite field storage so we used a trailer to haul around our gear. If I remember correctly it was owned and maintained by early member Frank Schlosser. In that same pic you can see all those "high tech" woodies that we thought were so cool to fly. I do have receipts from March 1994 when I bought my first high tech glider: an Airtronics Peregrine. That obeechi-sheeted wing with a pre-molded fiberglass fuselage was quite a step up in those days. I flew that one until I lost it in flight and crashed it during the 1996 Spring Fling so I immediately bought another one (that I still have).

I hope someone can post a copy of one of those early years club rosters. I do remember getting early help from Neil Nolte and Ron Kucera but there were many others. Eventually Steve Henke and I partnered up and timed for each other (see the pic below and notice that neither Steve nor I have aged at all in almost 20 years--pretty amazing! ).

Now, what would be really interesting is to project ahead 10 years and try and imagine what planes and flying will be like for SVSS members.

Chris B.
Last edited by SoaringDude; Aug 26, 2014 at 06:28 PM. Reason: updating names
Aug 26, 2014, 06:04 PM
Randy Bush, the guy to the right of Neil is Jim Ludwickson.
Last edited by SlopeRC; Aug 26, 2014 at 06:15 PM. Reason: add
Aug 26, 2014, 10:14 PM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

Club history from Peter Dannenfelser Sr

(as forwarded via Marty Falarski SVSS President from Peter D.)

Hi Marty - Quite naturally as one of the 12 or so members I am one of the Founding Members, but the real push came from a conversation I had with Frank Leggio and he really became the major push in getting the Club Founded and he was the First President and we had the first meeting in a little white church across from Franklin High School, and in fact our first flying site was at their practice field and one of our members hit the roof of the same house across the way and on the second hit, his plane battery ended up in the bed of their owners bedroom. Lots of good old stories from those original members and to think that now we have over 125 members.

Unfortunately, I CANNOT FLY AS WELL AS I DID DUE TO MY ORTHOSTATIC TREMORS and my thumbs are not as good as they used to be. But I will sure be at the Anniversary Celebration.

Thanks for all you help as Pres.

Best regards: Peter Dannenfelser SR.
Aug 30, 2014, 09:54 AM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

Pictures from Tom Ball

Tom brought his SVSS photo album to the field yesterday and shared a treasure trove of memories from SVSS years past. I only took 4 pictures to scan, shown below, but hopefully Tom will bring his album to the party. It's really quite a nice archive.
Last edited by SoaringDude; Aug 30, 2014 at 10:41 AM. Reason: typo
Aug 30, 2014, 10:37 AM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

From Neil and Joan Nolte

Neil and Joan contributed several interesting bits of memorabilia: a newsletter and roster from Feb 1990 of SVSS. Also a record of past officers from 1990 through 2006.
Sep 08, 2014, 12:05 PM
Team Hello Kitty
SoaringDude's Avatar

Shade structure pics from Joan Nolte

From Joan:

"Here are some pictures of the SVSS shade structure being built. I don't know who took them but thought you wanted some pictures for history of the club and I finally had a chance to search.

Peter Dannenfelser II designed the structure and Frank Schlosser and other SVSS members built it.

Sep 11, 2014, 10:48 AM
Registered User

Looking Back...

Congratulations to SVSS on your 25th anniversary. Itís been a long time since the group of guys flying every weekend at Ancil Hoffman park switched to flying at a high school south of town. It was the beginnings of SVSS and an opportunity to meet many new flyers who had been flying at their favorite sites scattered around the county. Markís efforts in later securing a site in Davis certainly proved to be an important factor in the clubís long term existence.

The Summer Soaring Challenge this year was a very well organized and an enjoyable contest for me to attend. Jim Thomas and all involved ran a good show. It was great to see Scott, Tom Ball, the Nolteís , JT and many others that I look forward to seeing again. I wonít be able to attend the contest & party, but itís wonderful to know the club has something so important to celebrate. Also, thank you Tom for posting the 1990 photo that reminded me that my beard was not always grey!

Tim Dolan
Sep 11, 2014, 05:27 PM
Registered User
TrekBiker's Avatar
Remember this one? Spring Fling 2001. JT brought out his 4000 watt generator for the winch batteries. It was so loud that I built a sound wall for it out of some 4x8 plywood lined with sound board. It ran all day in the hot sun and my sound proof box turned into an oven. At the end of the contest during the raffle JT walked out to it to turn it off and the fuel line just fell off. Instant inferno. Fortunately no one was hurt and we all managed to stomp out the fire

Steve Henke
Sep 11, 2014, 06:20 PM

SVSS at Montegue

Some 08, 11, and 13 shots
Sep 11, 2014, 06:21 PM
hmmmmm, starting to be a theme of charcol.................

Quick Reply

Thread Tools