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Nov 13, 2017, 12:06 AM
Modeling Retread
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Scariest Crash I’ve Ever Seen

We were at a flying event. We had limbered up we some afternoon flights on arrival the previous day. I flew my Sport Cub and my buddy flew his 35cc powered Extra. It flew better than ever after he had replaced a fussy throttle servo. The almost new engine was still breaking in but it was solid.

The next morning, first he made a minor repair on another plane and flew it. Then he pulled up the Extra to the starting area. We got it started, no problem. The he rolled it to the take off zone and we went to the pilot station. He gave it full throttle, it zoomed up high, arced over the top of an elliptical loop and came plummeting down into the pits, full speed. Just about as fast as you could read it. Shock! Stunned silence for a few moments. I had yelled “Watch out” but would not have done any good.

He said he wasn’t worried when the plane popped up because strong gusts had been causing serious ballooning on approaches all morning. When it wouldn’t push over... roll.. or throttle back he knew there was a problem. He yelled too but I don’t remember. All I remember is that red specter flashing straight down into the ground.

There was a guy standing in the same location as the person in the wreckage picture when it hit. He fell upon impact. I was afraid the wing had caught him but thankfully “no” it was just the startling nature of the impact that bowled him over.

The engine was broken into three pieces. The head ended up in the starting station. We picked up and swept up as well as we could but little bits of debris were everywhere. After he calmed down, he flew out the day with other airplanes.
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Nov 13, 2017, 08:30 AM
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F7X's Avatar
People forget that even though our feet are planted on the ground, this can be a dangerous sport. 20lb plane at 75mph will kill you if it hits your head or chest. After my near crash in front of thousands at the Truckee Air Fair I promptly upgraded all of my large aircraft to dual receiver power sources. The single rx battery had an intermittent connection. This was on a 13lb 180mph EDF.

We must do the best we can to ensure that our aircraft are safe to fly. Unfortunately the components are all mass produced and a servo, wire, receiver, etc can fail at any time without warning.

Happy everyone is ok.


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