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December, 2001


Triad Leadership: Rob Jensen 544-2827 Board Members:
Steve Cole 838-6315
Larry Childs 794-8487 Dino House 894-7878
Secretary: Larry Miller 577-0496 Website Coordinators:
Treasurer: Dale Chiaroni 585-0476 Mike Beito 408-379-6929
Newsletter: Tom Nowelsky 836-1037
Events Coordinator: Larry Frank 546-875

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Next Meeting: Tuesday, December 18th. 7:30 pm Veterans Memorial Building, across from fairgrounds.


It is time for us all to pay our 2002 club dues.  Remember that the Dues are $80.00 for adult members.

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By: Larry Miller

The meeting was called to order by Rob Jensen, at 7:30 pm. There were 22 members present.

The first order of business was to hold the monthly door prize drawing. Gil Delagnes was the lucky winner this time.

The Treasurer gave his monthly report and informed us that the annual dues statement is in the mail. Those members who helped out during the year, will receive a reduction in their dues according to our dues structure. If anyone has any questions concerning their statement, contact the Treasurer.

It was reported that the lock at the entrance to the field had been run over by a vehicle. These locks are expensive, so please be more careful.

The election for club officers for 2002 was held. The results of the election were as follows:

Club Officers

President: Kevin Riecke Treasurer: Dave Higgins
Vice President: Larry Childs Newsletter Editor: Tom Nowelsky
Secretary: Lewis Makeepeace Events Coord.: Ron Amrein

Board of Directors

Rob Jensen Steve Cole
Gil Delagnes Larry Miller
Joe Olson Stevo Smith
Gary Child Phil Leech
Gary and Phil are the designated cooks.

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The Name-the-Plane contest winner was Dave Higgins. The answers were the Chipmonk, the Tiger Moth, and the engine is the Gypsy Major.

The winner of the 50/50 raffle was Stevo Smith. Other members won many other prizes.

For Show and Tell, Mike Simon brought in his Sig Rascal Electric Plane. He hasn’t flown it yet, but they fly well.

He also brought in his Rodent glider. This is built for speed. It is very heavy, and can fly over 200 mph.

Larry Childs brought in his Kyosho F-86 ducten fan jet ARF. It is powered by an OS .15 engine. Larry feels it is under-powered, so he is planning on putting a K&B .45 into the airframe. That should make it scream.

The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 PM.

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The annual party will be held at Los Robles Lodge, 1985 Cleveland Avenue, Santa Rosa, at 7:00 PM on Saturday, January 12, 2002. The cost is $25.00 per person.

This includes a Buffet dinner, featuring New York Strip Steak, Grilled Chicken Breast, Filet of Salmon, Garlic Roasted Potatoes, Vegetables, Sourdough French Bread, Cheesecake, and Truffle Cake. Those who attended either of the past two years know that this is a delicious meal.

We will also have many fun events, including the annual awards, door prizes, and some surprise entertainment.

Invitations with return envelopes have been recently mailed. Reservations must be received by December 27th.

Don’t delay, plan to enjoy a memorable evening with your club buddies.

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The meeting was called to order by Rob Jensen at 7:30 PM.

There was a discussion regarding the holiday party to be held at Los Robles Lodge, on Saturday, January 12th. Invitations, with details will be mailed to all members, immediately. Reservations must be received by December 27th. Awards were discussed, as well as entertainment. The party is shaping up great.

Members need to remember that, in order to fly at the field, they need to display current club membership badges, and these badges cannot be issued, until the club has received a photocopy of the member’s current AMA card.

The board is about to begin the process to renew our lease with the County of Sonoma. In order to help protect our rights to the field, the board unanimously decided that we will strictly enforce all County rules. This includes NO SMOKING AT THE FIELD, and ALL DOGS MUST BE KEPT ON A LEASH. Board members were instructed to ask any member who is in violation of any of these rules, to please leave the field.

There being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 8:30 PM.

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By: Tom Nowelsky

We haven’t had a lot of good flying weather during the past month. The only day I can report on was Saturday, November 17th. And what a disaster it was.

Doug Boucher totalled his Edge 540. This was a beautiful quarter-scale model, with a twin engine OS power. Doug indicated that the plane suffered from some serious CG problems, throughout its life. He said he was never able to resolve the CG, and controllability contributed to its demise.

John Reade seriously damaged his Something Extra, when he lost the radio out over the woods at the North end of the field. It appears that he may have had a fuel tank failure, because he found the receiver and its padding to be completely soaked with fuel.

And I stupidly crashed my World Models Rambler.

In my case, I was practicing slow flight and got too low, too slow, and was also

down-wind, (although winds were very light at the time.) In any event, it dipped a wing,

and fell below the horizon before I could power up. I will have to re-build part of the wing, re-attach the empennage, and repair some of the fuselage covering.

Easily, one of the most interesting, (and unfortunate) happenings took place on Saturday, December 8th. Steve Cole arrived with a beautiful new Top Flight Spitfire, finished in camouflage markings, and powered by an OS .91 fx. The plane also sported Rhom Air retracts.

Anyway, after spending some time getting everything set up, Steve taxied out and took off. It was immediately clear that something was terribly wrong. The plane was almost totally uncontrollable. Although the CG was set correctly, it flew as if it were very, very tail heavy.

Under power, the plane kept porpoising. When power was reduced, the plane immediately wanted to drop a wing and snap roll. Steve tried just about everything to get the plane on the ground, but every approach was nerve-wracking, and resulted in a wave-off.

As this was a new, great looking warplane, there were quite a few observers, and all of us were equally horrified by what we were watching. It’s doubtful that anyone with less experience than Steve could have kept the plane in the air, at all.

As the fuel supply became short, a decision was made to attempt a controlled crash in the soft earth, to the east of the runway.

The result was a nose in that caused some moderate, but repairable damage. There was a small gash in the wing, broken wing hold downs, and a cracked cowl. All in all, the best that could be hoped for.

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This month, I am using this column to reprint our field rules. These are posted at the field, and are printed on our membership application, but it would not hurt to look them over again.

1. AMA license required
2, Membership badge must be worn at the field.
3. No alcohol is permitted at the field.
4. Transmitters must be impounded.
5. Obtain frequency pin before turning on your transmitter.
6. Mufflers are required on all engines.
7. Be watchful of full size aircraft.
8. No flying behind flight line of the runway.
9. No high speed passes over the runway.
10. Pilots must stand in designated pilot box.
11. Pilot, pit crew only on the flight line.
12. No more than 5 aircraft airborne at one time.
13. No starting or running engines in pit area.
14. No smoking allowed at the field.
15. All fuel spills must be contained or wiped up.
16. No spectators allowed beyond spectator area.
17. Flying hours are 9:00AM to 4:30 PM daily except Easter Sunday, July 4th, Labor Day, New Years Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, when the refuse site will be closed.

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For everyone who enjoyed last month’s article, by Larry Frank, about these balloons, Bill Boitano has submitted some follow-up information:


By: Bill Boitano

Upon reading the article in the November, 2001 issue ot Wine Country Flyers: "Another tale from the past," I was reminded of an article that I saw in a past issue of AIR CLASSICS.

I started to dig through my collection of old magazines, and found it in the April, 1996 edition of AIR CLASSICS.

The story is titled: "The Fire Bombing of America."

This balloon project was called Operation "FU-GO," by the Japanese Military, and was started on November 3, 1944.

These incendiary balloons were released to climb into the jet stream for the attack on the United States.

9300 balloons were launched toward North America, but probably, only about 10 percent of them reached our shore.

The first confirmed downing of a Japanese Balloon, in the U.S., was on February 23, 1945. On that date, a Lockheed, P-38 Lightning, based at the Santa Rosa Army Air Field (now known as the Charles Schultz Sonoma County Airport), intercepted a Japanese balloon over Calistoga, and Shot it down.

The first confirmed Japanese balloon explosion in the U. S. was on December 6, 1945, near Thermopolis, Wyoming.

Pretty interesting stuff!

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By: Tom Nowelsky


Have you been coming in long, low, and slow, only to have one wing tip stall? Does

the plane roll to one side faster than the other? You may have a "washout" problem. Washout is described as the degree to which the trailing edge of the wing is warped upwards, toward the tip. This reduces the angle of attack of the outboard wing section, relative to the inboard portion.

The primary purpose of washout is to ensure that the inboard portion of the wing will stall, before the outboard portion. Correct washout means that stall characteristics will be gentle. Washout that is equal on both wing halves assists in keeping roll rates equal in both directions.

In order to check washout, place your wing on a flat table. Hold it down at the center, and measure the distance off the table at the leading and trailing edges. They should be the same values on both wing halves.

Further, the trailing edges should be higher than the leading edges. Three-quarters of an inch of washout will give very docile handling characteristics to a .40 size plane.

Washout is easy to adjust on a built-up wing, which is covered with iron-on film. Simply block up the trailing edge, at the wing tip, and heat the covering to set the twist. Don’t forget that both tips must be equal.

Don’t forget that washout will not prevent stalls. If airspeed drops below a certain point, the plane will stall. Equal washout simply means that the stall will be straight ahead, and easier to recover from.

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For Sale: Raptor .30 Heli, with all field gear. This is a 49 bb upgraded heli with an O.S. SX .32 engine. Includes Hitec Eclipse 7 transmitter, and flight pack. Also includes fuel, starter, glo driver, etc. Asking $1,500 for everything. Call Kevin Alexander at 569-0391.

Lost at the Field: A Hobbico Tachometer. If found, contact Steve Jensen at 528-3966.





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Reprinted from Sparks Online.

Here’s a question that’s been asked a hundred times: "How should I break in my engine?"

The answer depends on what kind of engine you have.

For our purposes, let’s assume the engine in question is an OS 40 FP. This engine has a bushed (as opposed to ball bearing) supported crank shaft with an air bleed carburetor, and ABC (aluminum, brass, and copper) construction. The owner’s manual suggests that the engine could benefit from a short "break-in period" before being used to its full potential. This is true of all internal combustion engines.

How you break it in the engine determines what kind of useful life you will get from it.

For 40 FP and similar engines (remember we’re talking about an ABC engine), use a 10 x 6 prop. Fill the tank and

open the needle valve two or three turns. Start the engine. It should be running rich.

Gradually lean the mixture until it just breaks into a ‘clean’ two cycle. You will have

to listen to the exhaust sound of the engine. It should burble a little bit. The OS instruction manual says this setting would be

about one half turn out from the optimum setting.

The instructions also say to run out a whole tank on the ground with the engine set this way. If it were warmer, now would be a good time to go and cut some grass. (Stay well away from the engine, dust is an engine’s worst enemy.)

I run a second tank on the ground but I don’t use all of it. Run the engine for two minutes at the previous setting and then gradually lean it out until it is just below the optimum setting. Allow it to run this way for about 30 seconds or so and the richen the mixture back up. I alternate between the rich and lean two-cycle settings for about half the second tank of fuel and stop, allowing the engine to cool.

You can now fly the plane with the engine set slightly below the optimum setting for four or five flights and it will be completely broken in. I have found this method works well with the ABC type engines.

The break-in for ringed piston engines is similar but you don’t run as lean at first because the piston ring needs time to seat in the cylinder liner. In all cases, avoid dusty surroundings.

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Keeping our work area dust free is a full-time job, when working with balsa and light ply. One way to reduce the dust is to tape a furnace filter to the intake of a portable box fan. Running this on the floor near where you saw and sand will greatly reduce the dust in the area. (An old T-shirt between the fan and the filter, will reduce particles in the air even more.)

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The following is reprinted from the AMA National Newsletter, November, 2001:

By: Mike Zellars

An auto rotation is where a helicopter is brought safely to the ground, from any altitude, without power.

There is one key element to an auto rotation, and that is head speed. No head speed as you approach the ground equals no helicopter afterwards. Since the engine is what typically determines head speed, how on earth do we keep head speed after shutting the engine to idle, or off? Well, it has to do with the pitch of the main rotor blades, and the weight of the helicopter. When a helicopter is flying upright, there is always some positive pitch in the blades, and the helicopter needs engine power to maintain that positive pitch.

So when the power is off, we use the weight of the helicopter, along with negative pitch, to maintain head speed.

Basically, what happens is I will shut the engine down, and then immediately feed in between four and seven degrees of negative pitch. As the helicopter starts falling, the air comes up through the blades. Because of the negative pitch, this air automatically keeps head speed up, and sometimes increases it, depending on how fast I let the helicopter plummet.

Now, at about ten to 20 feet from the ground, I start feeding back in positive pitch, which slows the helicopter’s descent, and I keep feeding in pitch until the helicopter comes to a stop just a little above ground.

I then feed in a little negative pitch to set the helicopter down.

Clearly, Auto rotations have a lot to do with timing.

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Officers 2004:

President: Stevo Smith
Vice President: Phil Leech
Secretary: Larry Miller
Treasurer: Tom Haddorff
Member at Large Sid Maxwell
Board Members 2004:
John Reade

Gary Child

  Ralph Grella

Brody Carlson

Guy Nicholas

Web Coordinators: Stevo Smith
Newsletter Editor: Stevo Smith
Assistant Editor Phil Leech

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Wine Country Flyers
P.O. Box 4198
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