Category: Club Meetings


Club safety talk March 10th 2020

Andy presented a talk on some of the lesser thought about safety aspects of flying which covered much of the safety in and around the pits. The talk was entitled Step Back Assessment. The notes below reflect the aspects covered.

Feel free to comment below.

Step Back Assessment

  • Look, Think, Analyse, Change, Reflect, Improve

Stop and Think

  • Preparing to start and fly a model aircraft

Observe the activity area and surroundings

  • Other people are also preparing model aircraft, some big, some small, some different
  • Where is the wind?
  • What is the ground like (flat, bumpy, grass, concrete)?

Think through the steps that you will be taking

  • Fuel the model
  • Prime the engine
  • Attach glow lead
  • Flick the propeller
  • Tune the engine
  • Carry out to the take-off position

Identify what else is happening in the area

  • A large petrol model is being prepared
  • Group of people in the vicinity
  • Other engines in the pits are running

Identify any hazards

  • Spilt fuel
  • Oil on model and hands
  • Loose objects in the pits
  • Lipo safety / Lipo strinkes
  • Sharp prop, hard compression
  • No spinner used, snagging with the prop nut
  • Engine flooded
  • Throttle set too high
  • Reaching over the prop arc to get to the TX
  • Glow clip / Glow drive falling into the propeller
  • Propeller bouncing back and kicking hand / fingers
  • Engine starts with excessive RPM, model lurches forward until restraint takes the slack
  • Will the restraint hold the model?
  • Moving out of the pits with the engine running

Identify methods of controlling these hazards

  • Look at the pits layout, how do you improve safety?
  • Model restraint, use of a helper
  • TX throttle warning alarm

Satisfy yourself that the hazards are controlled before starting the activity


At all times, if it is not right, stop and change

Ask a buddy to assess your pit layout and activities

Learn from every time you go flying

Look at how others pit, look at the layouts, the equipment

Learn from each other, share the good and the bad experiences, DISCUSS

When you are ready to start the engine, STOP, spend 30 seconds taking a second look

After every flying session, ask yourself the question “how could I improve the process, how can I make it safer?”


Club Night was Build Night

Well its always a sign of winter when we get to the club build competition night and this months club meeting was that night.

After the formal club meeting was over it was over to Phil to set the challenge for the eveing.

This year’s competition was to build a flying model out of two pieces of supplied balsa, the model then had to fly the length of the room and hit the chair, the winner would be the person who it the chair the most times…..REMEMBER THAT, HIT THE CHAIR THE MOST TIMES!!!!!

We were given a limited time to fabricate and trim our aircraft, then the flying began, and to be honest it was a lot harder than most people had realised.
There were many interesting designs some flew good some not so good, Geoff’s plane which would only fly successfully if it was aimed at Mick, Chris’s plane that flew better after each crash (what was that all about) and Bobs dart that flew straight but always stopped an inch away from the chair no matter how hard it was thrown.

After two rounds there were only a couple of planes that had managed to hit the chair.

But then I managed to get my glider into trim and managed three hits in close succession to take the lead and as far as I was aware the prise for the evening being one hit ahead of my nearest competitor.

Thats when a last minute change to the competition format occurred and it turned into a sudden death single attempt fly off.
needless to say on this attempt I missed the chair and snatched defeat from the jaws of victory!!! Nice on Phil!

That aside it was a cracking night as usual.