The Radio Control Club of Detroit

An AMA Gold Leader Club
AMA Chapter # 368
An AMA Charter Club Since 1953
IMAA Chapter #206



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News Archive - 2009


Just how rigid is Depron foam?

I mounted the FlyCamOne facing rearward on the Deprecon to try and catch John's T-28 sneaking up on me. The amount of flex in the horizontal stabilizer surprised me. Take a look at the stab on the picture or the short video to see the movement!

I have since added another pair of struts ahead of the two in this picture.


November 5th Meeting - Member presentations

Joe Svatora demonstrates vacuum molding.

Bruce Thoms scratch-built this DL glider


John McCormick stocks up on electrics for the winter:
P-51, Sukoi, & Messeschmitt Bf-109.

Noel Hunt's Deprecon

Designed and built to instruct high school students for an aviation project. The Deprecon (Depron Reconnaissance aircraft!) can also carry ordnance of a video camera and/or lights for night flying. (The camera on this plane caught Larry's bipe crash.)

WS: 48"
Weight: 24 oz
Wing loading: 3.6 oz/sq ft
Power: 100W
Lighting: 18 LEDs powered by 3 AAAs


11/09/09 2010 Membership Renewal

When filling out your renewal form please read it carefully. Regular dues are $75.00 and senior dues are $55.00. If you have your work card to send in, you deduct $2.50 for every hour worked up to $25.00. With 10 hours or more deduct the full amount of $25.00, making the regular dues $50.00 and senior dues $30.00. Juniors are still only $13.00.

And this year let’s everyone try to get those dues in before the deadline of January 31st. February 1st there is a $5.00 late fee. March 1st you are dropped from the club roster and you’ll have to pay the initiation fee again to get back in the club.

Forms can be downloaded from our web site (membership form) or picked up at the meetings. So let’s pay early, it saves you money and makes it easer on Bill and Steve.

- complete the form
- sign your name
- enclose a self addressed stamped envelope
- enclose a copy of your AMA card
- enclose your check

The Membership Committee



Pattern Contest - 2010

RCCD is working with NSRCA (National Society of Radio Control Aerobatics) to host a Pattern contest in 2010. To find out what it takes to participate in the entry-level Sportsman's class, take a look at the sequence card, which you can print and try at the field. The sequence card is also available from our Hints and Tips page. The NSRCA website has details on what each maneuver should look like as well as a host of additional information.

As they become available, we will post details of our event on, or contact our CD, Peter Van Heusden.



RCCD Ground School – In-door Flying at the Ultimate Soccer Arenas (U.S.A.)

October’s Ground School had two objectives:
1. Provide details of in-door flying at the U.S.A. to those who have not yet participated.
2. Share ideas among those who have flown in-doors at the U.S.A.

About half the members who participated, had flown at the U.S.A. last year and half had not. So we had a good opportunity to achieve the objectives. A few members led the discussion, each covering an aspect of in-door flying. This was followed by a show-and-tell style presentation of typical planes that are used.

General description of the facility and its use for in-door flying - Ken Sulkowski
U.S.A. consists of three soccer fields under one roof. It is situated on South Blvd, west of Opdyke road, in Pontiac. The fields radiate from a central entrance area that contains a restaurant, coffee shop, sport shop and conference rooms.

One of the soccer fields is made available for R/C flying every Tuesday from November 10th to March 30th and between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm. Some additional days will be available.

The flying is arranged through the leadership of Skymasters in cooperation with Radio Control Club of Detroit, Romeo Skyhawks, Greater Detroit Soaring and Hiking Society, and sponsorship by Flight Line Hobby, Prop Shop Hobbies, R/C Hobbies, Great Planes, Nankin Hobby, Horizon Hobby and Hobby-Lobby.

The flying area is 365 ft by 260 ft with 45 ft to 75 foot ceilings and is open to aircraft that have electric propulsion systems, and weigh no more than 2 lb ready to fly. Helicopters may fly at one end of the field; 3-D type flying at the other end, micro-planes in the corners and the central area is open to sport flying in a counter-clockwise direction.

Further details and requirements are available on the flyer and application form.

Cost Considerations – Noel Hunt
There are three prices for U.S.A. use: $100 for an All-Season pass; $30 for 5 sessions; $15 per session. AMA membership is required.
As with other forms of R/C, airplane costs should be divided into airframe and electronic equipment, because the equipment can usually be moved from one (wrecked) plane to another. Most of us construct simple inexpensive planes from a sheet of Depron foam that can be purchased from Mike Pavlock, at $6 for a 3 mm sheet. With care one sheet will make 2 planes! Carbon Fiber reinforcement, control linkages, etc, push the plane cost to about $10 to $15.

The equipment, consisting of motor, electronic speed controller (ESC), batteries, servos and receiver total to about $125, but as indicated, are more-or-less a one-time cost. A charger capable of fast-charging the type of battery used (usually LiPo), is required, but we often already have one.

The U.S.A. restaurant and coffee shop have really good fare at very reasonable prices and a number of guys arrive early for a coffee and stay for lunch after the flying. Because Pontiac is a long drive for many RCCD “East-Siders”, car-pooling is common.

Batteries and other considerations – Larry Boulet
By far the most prevalent batteries used are LiPos, but NiCd, NiMH and A123 are evident. Larry demonstrated his flight box containing a 7mAh Pb acid power source, and other necessary items. Portability is important because of the walk from the parking lot to the field.
Larry also made available a sheet of information, with web links for a number of resources, including free plans for planes.

Risks and Risk Mitigation – Willie McMath
About 50 pilots show up at each session and the “sky” gets pretty full at times. As many as 25 planes of all types (helicopters, 3-D, micro and sport) have been seen flying at the same time. Mid-air collisions happen! His advice is to fly only planes that you will not cry over, if they fall victim to a mid-air.

If (when) you have to retrieve a plane from the field, watch carefully for approaching aircraft. They keep flying even when people are on the field. There will be pilots of varying abilities, some of which are fairly limited. Intrusions into and behind the flight line, while never intended, can and do happen from time to time. It is good to be vigilant…..and have a spotter when you fly.

It takes a while to get used to the lighting as your plane flies in front of the windows and is silhouetted. Keeping it below or above the windows helps. 75 feet is a very high ceiling for a building, but unlike clouds, it is also very fixed! Avoid it.

Any legal radio frequency may be used, but frequency control in the 72MHz band is a concern. Fly 2.4 GHz if you can and avoid potential interference.

Opportunities – Mike Pavlock
Because there is participation by pilots from all over SE Michigan and even Northern Ohio, representing many R/C clubs, this is a great opportunity to promote RCCD and our events. Talk to “strangers” (they won’t be for long!) and tell them about our great events.

It is also a good time to catch up with guys you may not have seen in a while, and get some stick time in a warm environment despite the snow on the ground outside. The weather is always pleasant, with no wind in the arenas! This environment is perfect for flying aircraft with a very light wing loading.

From time to time items are raffled and thanks to the generosity of the sponsors, those items are most appreciated.

There is opportunity to purchase R/C related items at the arenas. Selling is restricted to sponsors during flying hours and you are encouraged to support them. In addition, you should be able to talk to the guys who sell items like Depron foam, and other unique items needed for indoor flying. and perhaps arrange to buy the items at another time.

Open Discussion and Show-and-Tell – All
There was useful discussion about a number of other aspects of the in-door flying experience. Then each of the many planes on display, was described with thoughts on what it is, why it is suitable, how it is powered, its flight characteristics, how it was built and/or modified, etc.

Take a look at the videos from last winter to get an idea of flying at the U.S.A. Ultimate Soccer Arenas 2 12/30/2008 includes footage from an on-board camera. Watch for the mid-air collision that the DH-2 survives.

The in-door flying experience is great. Keep it that way by being courteous and considerate to all: the other pilots; the U.S.A. owner and his staff; and the guys that organize the events. We are privileged to have such an opportunity in our community.

Well we achieved our two objectives at the ground school and hopefully we have added one: sharing the experiences with more people.




Meyers - OTW Biplane

In 1946 I owned a Meyers OTW – 160HP. Biplane. There were 102 of these planes built in Tecumseh, Michigan between 1939 and 1943. They were used in the C.P.T.P (Civilian Pilots Training Program). This program gave flight training to college students who were enlisted to join the Army Air Corps. upon graduation. After the war these planes became surplus and I bought one that had been factory overhauled, for $1500. I sold it a few years later to pay for college.

In 1981 I started flying radio controlled aircraft and I wanted to build a scale model of the Meyers. I visited the Meyers factory and met a Meyers owner who allowed me to take pictures, sketches and dimensions of his plane. I proceeded to make a detailed drawing that was later published in the August 1988 issue of Model Builder Magazine. I built so much detail into the model that I chickened out to fly it! – It became a hangar queen and was exhibited in hobby shops for a number of years. I did however build a second model that I have been flying for ten years.

For years now, the detailed model has been in my basement with a cover over it. I decided that this “pretty bird” should be shown and not hidden. I contacted the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Museum in Oshkosh, Wisconsin and offered to donate my model to their museum. They were interested because they have an airworthy Meyers in the Pioneer Airport part of the museum. They asked me to send pictures and I soon received a phone call from the museum curator wanting to know when I could deliver it. I drove to Oshkosh on October 15 (2009) and did so. The old bird will now have a home with lots of friends.

The museum is one of the best I’ve ever seen. It’s open year round and well worth the trip.

Darrell Rohrbeck

For more info on the museum go to the EAA Museum web siteand their Meyers OTW page for info on the full-size Meyers bipe

Darryl Rohrbeck and his Meyers OTW Biplane - 1946 (not to reveal his age now, but in 1946 he had not long given up his teen years!)


In-door Flying at the Pontiac Ultimate Soccer Arenas (U.S.A.)

Once again, this winter there will be in-door flying at the U.S.A. thanks to cooperative efforts of Skymasters, Romeo Skyhawks, Greater Detroit Soaring & Hiking Society, RCCD and the generous sponsors: Flight Line Hobby; Great Planes; Horizon Hobby; Prop Shop Hobbies; R/C Hobbies; Nankin Hobby; and Hobby-Lobby

Flying is generally available on Tuesdays from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm between November 10 and March 30th, as well as select other times. Further detail is available on the flyer. There are videos of last year's activity in the Picture Shoe Box page


R/C Report On-Line

The monthly print magazine R/C Report ceased publication last year. However an on-line version has re-immerged and is available at their web site. I have subscribed to it since it began operation shortly after the "Toledo" show this year. The contributing staff are much the same as the print version, but Tony Coberly is running the show now, while Gordon Banks is still the editor. They "....... still have the same format, the same writers, and the same candid honesty. We intend to keep it that way for a long time, too."

I do find it contains so much more depth of content than the other R/C publications out there and the info is presented in a way that is clear, detailed, very candid, and at the same time with a large dose of humor.

Check it out at


Club Picnic and Fun Fly

Our annual fun fly and picnic on Sept 5 & 6 offered fun, flying, food and a fire. It was was a great success thanks to all who participated and contributed, but particularly to Rainel Veres (the food), CD Bob Chapman & Scott Gilkey (the fun), the pilots (the flying), and the folks who lingered on Saturday evening (the fire). For once the forecast was accurate and the weather was about as perfect as it could be, and that also helped make a fantastic weekend.

Some folks got a jump on the open flying by arriving on Friday and camping 2 nights. On Saturday, the pits were comfortably full for free flying and there was ample food throughout the day. About 50 people sat down to a fabulous feast on Saturday evening. In the still air of the evening, electrics then appeared, and so did the mosquitoes! The ffht of bug spray kept them at bay for a while and then there was an attempt to see how many people could fit into my screened-in easy-up shelter. The ffht this time was the beers and soda's being opened.

Shortly after the sun fell below the trees we could feel the temperature drop about 10 degrees. And the fearful mozzies were suddenly gone. A fire was fanned into life and stoked until it burned furiously for the 12 or 15 folks who stayed to enjoy it. A near full moon rose large and yellow and flooded the misty field with light. After a couple of hours of conversation, folks gradually drifted off until the last five abandoned the fire and turned in for the night, to their campers and a tent.

(OK - after I have focused on all those words starting with "F", I can imagine the next time you see me, you might have something to say to me using another word that starts with "F"!! So I'll quit.)

The mist and condensation were thick as the campers emerged on Sunday morning. An SE-5a dawn patrol assured that there no enemy aircraft lurking. Members who prefer to sleep in the comfort of their homes began to arrive by 9:00 am. At 10:00 am the flag was hoisted and the fun-fly began.

Event 1 - Climb and Glide. The climb time was reduced from 30 second to 15 seconds because of some wildly over-powered planes. After 15 seconds, engines had to be shut off and the pilot had to stretch his dead-stick glide for as long as possible. The results:

1st Place..........Darrell Rohrbeck............... 1:34.19 Min
2nd Place.........Dave Durocher.................. 1:03.06 Min
3rd Place..........Ken Remenchus Jr............ 58.56 Sec

Event 2 - Ring Drop. A PVC ring sits on a dowel that is strapped to the plane. The object is to take off, fly over a target flag and drop the PVC ring as close as possible to the flag. Top bomber pilots were:

1st Place......... Doug Norris.........................16’
2nd Place........ Phil Laperriere ...................19’
3rd Place......... Scott Gilkey........................ 27’

A BBQ grill lunch was served to all members and their families.

Event 3 - Two Minute touch-and-go: Take off and perform as many touch-and-go's as possible in 2 minutes. Pilots with the most experience bouncing their landings:

1st Place.......... Scott Gilkey........................ 15 Touch N Go’s
2nd Place......... Ken Remenchus Jr............ 10 Touch N Go’s
3rd Place.......... Noel Hunt.............................. 8 Touch N Go’s
3rd Place.......... Doug Norris.......................... 8 Touch N Go’s

Event 4 - Drag Race. With wings removed, drag race against the other pilots. The most over-powered planes:

1st Place......... Dave Durocher
2nd Place........ Ken Remenchus Jr.
3rd Place......... Eric Gilkey

Congratulations guys. However, these pilots earned only bragging rights. The prizes were awarded by lucky draw, to participating pilots. Thanks to PropShop, Flightline, the RCCD treasury and Club Wear chest, Ed Barbier, and Richard Javery for the prizes.

Pictures and perhaps a video will be added soon (if you have pictures to post, please e-mail them to me). Please check back.



August Ground School - Motor City Muscle visit.

RCCD members on board the CH-47 Chinook

For our August Ground School, RCCD was invited to visit the Selfridge base of DET1 CO B 3-238th (Motor City Muscle), the Michigan Army National Guard unit that flies the twin-rotor CH-47 Chinooks. After landing the CH-47 at our 2x2 event in June, the crew offered to host us at their hangar, and an invitation like that was quick to be accepted.

The most informative and entertaining evening started with a PowerPoint presentation about the Motor City Muscle, the Chinook, and some the missions the guys have been on both at home and in combat. The presentation concluded with a video, flying into Baghdad as seen through night vision goggles. They then showed us some of their gear, including the night vision equipment. Turning off the lights in the room had us fumbling around in the dark....until we were able to get a set of these incredible devices to our eyes. Wow!

We then had a tour of the op's room, ready room and on down to the hangar and a closer look at the 4 Chinooks there. Maintenance is a big part of the success of these "birds" so a number of the access panels were open on a couple of them. We were able to get an idea of the complex guts of the machines.

We all left with a reaffirmed appreciation for these guys and confirmation that we're glad to have the US military on our side!


We presented a certificate as a token of our appreciation for the fly-in to our field,
but more importantly for what they do for our country.


Approved Change to Club By-Laws

Article 2 of the club By-laws has been changed to permit more flexibility in the days and times of our meetings. This change was approved by the club at the August 18th meeting. The entire constitution and by-laws are available from the About Us page.

New Wording of Article 2:
"Regular meetings of the club shall be held at least once a month."

Old Wording:
"Regular meetings of the club shall be held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 7:30 p.m."

This change was driven by our loss of use of the Rosso Hall in Harrison Township for the regularly scheduled Club meetings. We were unable to find another suitable location for those days and times. However we are able to meet in our new location on Thursdays. The rewording will permit easier managing of any future disruptions.

So, meetings will be held on the first and third Thursday of each month for the foreseeable future. They will be at the Tucker Senior Center and start at 7:30 pm (same as before).


Proposed Change to Club By-Laws

Dear RCCD member.

The Radio Control Club of Detroit has lost the use of the Rosso Hall in Harrison Township for the regularly scheduled Club meetings.

A new room is available at the Tucker Senior Center on Ballard, close to the existing hall, but only on Thursdays.

The club By-Laws currently require that the club meetings must be held on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of each month. According to the club Constitution, a change to the bylaws requires approval by a vote at a regular meeting after 30 days notice has been provided to the members.

Please accept this communication as notification that a vote on a by-law change to provide increased flexibility in regard to meeting time and location will be held on Tuesday August 18th 2009 at the Macomb Fire Training Academy. Meeting start time is 7:00pm .

The Academy address is:
21901 Dunham Rd.
Clinton Twp , MI 49235
(Map available)

Your attendance and participation is invited.

Keith Jones - Secretary - RCCD


The following is from our flight instruction manual. It has not been posted in a while, so with the flying season in full swing, here's a reminder:

Priorities in flying.

Here we list the basic rights of way for the flying field in the order of most importance. These rules apply from the time you enter the flight line until the time you carry your airplane back to the pit area:

1) Dead stick landings - When an airplane's engine dies, the airplane is going to come down no matter what. The flyer with the dead stick must yell ``DEAD STICK!'' immediately. Anyone on the field must know an airplane is coming down in order to stay out of its way. A flyer with a dead engine has the highest priority. ALL other flyers must give the right of way (including any that have already called their landing). If flying an electric and the battery gives indication that it is low, that pilot has "dead stick" priority.

2) A person on the field - Whenever a person goes onto the field to retrieve an airplane, they MUST call (very loudly) ``ON THE FIELD!’’ This person has the right to safely retrieve their airplane. While ANYONE is on the field, no take offs, landings, or low passes are allowed. The only exception to this rule is a dead stick landing. Once the person exits the runway area, they must alert all flyers with the call ``FIELD'S CLEAR!’’ If you are the person retrieving your plane, be sure to take the shortest route off the field to help others who may wish to land.

3) A flyer calling a landing - The first flyer that calls a landing has the right to land. Do not attempt to hurry a takeoff to beat an airplane that is landing. If your engine stalls, an airplane will be sitting in the middle of the runway while another airplane lands!

4) A flyer ready to take off - Notice that take offs get the lowest priority. At times a flyer may have to wait for several minutes while other pilots land and retrieve their airplanes.

Call your take offs and landings - The more informed you can keep other pilots, the safer flyer you’ll be. Some one may have called a landing without your hearing it. If you call your landing loudly, another flyer will be sure to alert you that someone else has already called their landing. Acknowledge other pilots announced intentions so that they know you have heard them as well.

Be sure you know which way everyone is taking off and landing. Especially on calm days, flyers have a tendency of taking off in both directions. Watch to be sure you know which way everyone is taking off and landing. If in doubt, ask! Whenever there is a crosswind, take offs and landings must be into the prevailing wind direction.



2009 Great Lakes Scale

Wind was the dominant force at this year's Great Lakes Scale event with speeds ranging from15 to 20 mph. There was still a reasonable turnout of model aircraft and the event was also well attended by spectators. There were awards for spectators choice & pilots choice, many flight ticket prizes and awards for judged flying. Only 4 pilots chose to participate in the judged flying which was a real challenge in the wind.

Award Winners
Spectators' Choice -
Joe McMillan
Pilots' Choice -
Calvin Mitchell
Yak - 54
1st place - Judged Flying -
Noel Hunt
Extra 300
2nd place - Judged Flying -
Larry Chaltron
Staudacher S-300
3rd place - Judged Flying -
John McCormick
Yak - 54

Russ & Don provided intro flights to about 10 visitors who wished to try R/C flying. A trainer in 20 mph winds: Now there is a real challenge!

As always, thanks to all who contributed to the success of this event, especially CD, Keith Jones.

Pictures available in the Picture Shoe box.



Pictures by Larry B.

2009 2 x 2 Event
June 14th 2009

RCCD's first event for aircraft with two or more wings and/or two or more engines was held in perfect weather conditions and saw some terrific aircraft. 21 pilots registered and flew about 40 aircraft representing a wide variety of bipes, and "multi's".

In the theme of the 2 x 2, a twin-rotor CH-47 Chinook from the Michigan Army National Guard landed in the U-control area at the lunchtime break. We were grateful for the requirement of staying in the R/C pit area as it landed, avoiding the worst of the 100 mph "wind" from those huge rotors. After everyone had a chance to walk through the Chinook, the crew and all of the military veterans present, were grouped for a photo and recognized for what they do and have done for us.

Then, I had the best task of the day, of all the tasks that RCCD members had to perform: To introduce most of the crew to R/C flying on the buddy box. Although the Avistar has only one wing and one engine it did have two controllers, so I guess the 2x2 theme was maintained! We have some natural R/C pilots in that group, although the CH-47 did look a lot smoother in flight than the Avistar in their control!

Thanks to Chief Warrant Officer Zelnak for making the CH-47 visit happen and RCCD member Pete Mlinarcik for pulling some strings to get us in touch with him.

Our thanks also to the C.D., Ernie Varilone for proposing the idea of the 2x2 and then following up with organizing it. For the success of the event, he is quick to thank the many club members who pitched in to support him, as well as all the pilots (RCCD members and visitors) for flying those 2x2's.

There is a highlights video and more pictures in the Picture Shoe Box. I'll be glad to add any pictures you took. Send them to me at



RCCD Big Bird Fly In-2009
June 13th, 2009

Fly Ins are expected to be the best weather flying days of the year. But, as with many of our events, the Big Bird Fly In-2009 began wet & slow with planes covered with plastic (1), waiting on the flight line. That wet weather lasted only a short time before the rain cleared out and the rest of the day was calm & perfect for flying. We had everything from a Lou Tisch’s small Tundra Cub (2 & 3), through single IMAC, twin & 4-engine warbirds (4 & 5) to a 3-engine camoflaged giant Junker 52 by David Stroup (6).

Richard Javery (7) entertained us with excellent flying with his Yak 55. Gary Weaks performed nicely with his Piper twin (8) and his P-47 (9), both scratch built. This flying was accompanied by Chris Tucker and his Zero (10) & Corsair (11) with some nice single and formation flying. Jim Beavers flew his scratch built B-25 (12 &13) very scale like. Ken Sulkowski has some minor field repairs to perform on his Military Cub (14). Jim McCoul had his scratch built flying wing (15) with a Quadra gasser for power. John McCormick had the honor of the maiden flight of the Wing, but aborted the take-off as there was not enough “up” elevator to get it off the ground, much less fly it comfortably. All it will take is a bit of adjustments and it will be into the air.

The big highlight of the day was a show & tell of “the Bear” (16) by George Maiorana. George scratch built this model from the plug to the mold and then to the finished plane. The landing gear (17) were built by George and are marvelous work of art. He also designed the counter rotating propeller unit (18) for power. This model took top honors at the Toledo Show in 2008 and George & Dave Pinegar (Dave is George’s pilot in team scale) won 2nd best in Team Scale at Top Gun 2009 with “the Bear”.

This Big Bird continues to get better and more fun each year. Special thanks to our supporters, The Prop Shop & Flite Line Hobbies.

Lou Tisch

More pictures in the Picture Shoe Box

Joe McMillan's Taylorcraft

Big Birds

Yak 55

Chris Tucker & Zero

Jim Beaver's B-25


Lou's Tundra Cub

More Big Birds

Gary Weeks' Piper Twin

Chris with Corsair

Ken Sulkowski - delicate adjustment


Big Tires and 80" WS
Junkers JU-52

Gary's P-47


Jim McCoul's Fierce Arrow


EAA Chapter 13 / RCCD Fly-in
Saturday, June 6th 2009

Now that was a great day of sharing our interest in aviation! When EAA Chapter 13 president, Rex Phelps and I began talking about a joint event, we never thought that it would generate as much interest as it did. About 60 people arrived at Dave’s Landing either driving vehicles, some loaded with R/C aircraft, or flying in with a wonderful range of full-size aircraft.

RCCD members had an opportunity to ride in a full-size plane and I believe most who wanted to did so. We all really enjoyed the rides, especially the stick-time that most of us had and the low fly-bys were spectacular for those of us on the ground. However it was also fascinating to hear about each aircraft from the pilots.

The Ch13 pilots had a chance to fly R/C on the buddy boxes. As R/C instructors, it was a pleasure to have “students” who already fully understand the principles of flight and only have to overcome the 3rd-person perspective of flying: Depth perception and the challenge of the plane flying towards you. Most conquered that quickly, and were looping and rolling on their first flight!

An indication of how we underestimated the interest level, occurred on Friday evening. Bob Hunt (Ch 13 also has a Bob Hunt!), the master of the BBQ, was assessing the amount of food we would need. From both clubs, he combined the numbers who indicated that they would attend and it became apparent that a temporary “outhouse” would be needed. Some quick phone calls at 8:00 pm and Pot o’ Gold came through for us (as usual)

I really appreciate the effort of everyone to make this an enjoyable event. Everyone pitched in but especially appreciated, was the attention to safety by all.

Of course a huge thanks to the full-size aircraft pilots for sharing the aircraft of which they are so justifiably proud; and the R/C pilots for displaying and flying model aircraft representing many kinds of R/C interests, including trainers, combat, electric, aerobatics (with smoke – thanks to Tim from the River District Eagles), scale and sport planes.

Dave’s Landing is the property of Dave Shirey who not only graciously hosted the event, but also flew a number of ride-flights in his Varga. We all thank you Dave.

“Is this going to be an annual event?” is a question that Rex and I heard from many people. We can’t answer that at this time, but the question is the best compliment that he and I could receive! We hope that everyone had a good time.


Newspaper article in The Voice.


George Maiorana / Dave Pinegar take 2nd place in Team Scale at Top Gun, with George's TU-95. Congratulations guys.

photos by Ken Isaac, RCU


2009 - 4th Annual Electrics Event

Our 4th annual Electrics Event was another resounding success. Fifty registered pilots brought and flew a wide variety of electric-powered aircraft. There were small ones and big ones; fast and slow; beat up and show quality; helicopters and powered gliders; WWI bipes and EDF jets. At a lunch time break, I counted 115 aircraft, but I may have missed a few - in vehicles, in the air, or otherwise out of plain sight.

Highlights of the day were demonstration flights by Keith Shaw, of two of his larger Aircraft, an 82-inch,14 lb, 1200 Watt Bearcat and a very rare Moeller Stomo. Using the PA system, Keith provided some details of both the full scale Stomo as well as the model. (thanks Keith for the e-mail follow-up)

"The original plane was designed and built by Hans Moeller, a 20 year old draftsman. He was an avid modeler who took some university aero design courses, and the Stomo was his first man-carrying plane. It competed in the local aero-competitions in the low horsepower class. It had a 25' span, weighed merely 560 pounds with pilot and 5 gal gas, and was powered with a horizontal twin motorcycle engine of 18 Hp! The plane won the speed event at 98 mph and the aerobatic class also. Later he upgraded it to a 40 Hp, 4 cylinder motorcycle engine that he modified to run inverted. It also won the aerobatics class and the speed at 121 mph. My model reflects that engine.

"The model is 28% scale at 84" span, 1050, and weighs 7.5 lbs. It is powered with a geared Astro brushless 40 on 8 A123 cells turning a 15/10 APC prop. At full power it pulls just a little over 500 watts giving it excellent performance matched to a very efficient airframe. Aerobatic flight times are 9-10 minutes, 12-14 if I'm just sport flying it. At this point it is my favorite aerobatic "mount", unseating my long-standing Zlin 526 and Bucker Jungmann."

Keith believes there are only about 10 photos of the plane, and his may be the only model of the Moeller Stomo. Keith Shaw is well-known for his command of electric-powered flight. What impressed me is his command of the sticks: Take a look at the video of the Stomo in flight - how about that 8-point roll and the final slow roll? Thanks for the inspiration.

Chris Haas also flew a large Bearcat. These three aircraft show how far Electric propulsion has come.

The midday breeze may have grounded a few planes but otherwise the weather was almost perfect. All the pilots seemed to have a good time and for that we thank the hard work of the numerous club members that helped out under the leadership of CD Mike Pavlock. To the pilots of planes with smaller wheels, we apologize. Bob L went through extreme effort to get the tractor towed out of the mud to mow the runway on Saturday evening, but Michigan spring is what it is. After all the recent rain, the field was really tough to prepare despite Bob's extraordinary effort.. Most planes however, managed well.

A special thanks go to the generosity of our sponsors: Castle Creations who have supported us all 4 years; Prop Shop Hobbies; Flight Line Hobbies; Air Land and Sea Hobby; and Air Hobby RC. Please favor them when you are making your R/C purchases. (It's not hard to as they all have great service, great products and good prices too). See our "Links" page for access to their web sites.


Be sure to click though the additional pictures the event - from the "Picture Shoe box" page.


Float Flying

Float Flying has begun. Members of various area clubs gather at Stony Creek Metro Park each Wednesday morning (weather permitting) for flying off water. Head to the Winter Cove area. A Metro Park sticker is required for park access. This float flying occurs on Wednesday mornings from May 6th through October with a 9:00 am start.

Skymasters holds a couple of float flying events each year. The first is the Chet Brady Float Fly. Details available on their flyer.


4/22/09 Ken S. found an interesting link that shows how various engines work.
4/15/09 CORKS is holding an R/C Skydiver Rally. July 18-19 in Columbus OH area. More info is available from their web site.

3/17 Club Meeting
Member Project Presentation

Darrell Rohrbeck continues to learn about this new-fangled electric ......... stuff!

He brought in a Lil' Rascal that he is converting from brushed to brushless.

  • Flight Line Hobbies is holding two covering demos in April (11th & 18th). More info available on their flyer.
  • I spoke with Tony Corberly at the Toledo Show and R/C Report in an on-line version is now available (I signed up at the show). More info available on their web site. You can also sample the new format for free this month.


Club Meetings

3/17 Member Project Presentation

Jim McCoul's bigger Fierce Arrow was built about 20 years ago, but has never flown. The 8-foot wingspan flying wing has a wing loading of 22.6 oz/sq ft and is powered by a Quarda 40. When Jim built it, he did not have a computer radio, so he constructed mechanical elevon controls.


R/C Report: On-line version to be available from Tony Coberly. Here is what I received in an e-mail:

"Here is a mid month update for everyone.

- New website is coming along on schedule
- My trip to the Perry Ga. swap shop was very good, and the meet was better than ever
- I have an exhibitor booth reserved Toledo show to launch the site, hope to see you there
- Pricing for the online magazine will be as follows:

o Standard user cost is $24.99 for an annual subscription. This will allow you to view the current magazine online, as well as view the archived issues as they are converted and uploaded. You will be able to sign up online by Credit card, or you can call the office.

o Premium user cost is $29.99 for annual subscription. This will allow you to view current magazine online, as well as view the archived issues as they are converted and uploaded, PLUS you will be able to download a PDF version to your computer. You will be able to sign up online by Credit card, or you can call the office.

RCReport Online
Tony Coberly
Office: 256-503-8436
Hours M-Th 9a-3:30p Ct
Lunch Noon to 1Pm daily"

And in a second e-mail:

"We will be accepting subscriptions on April 1, 2009 when new site is released!"

Take a look at his website.


Club Meetings

Member Project Presentations

Projects presented at the March 3rd club meeting were:

• Jim McCoul showed his Fierce Arrow 4’ Delta wing with a K&B61 (right).
• Bruce Thoms: Ugly 30 built as an electric. Less than 8oz. Covered with PolySpan (below left)
• Noel Hunt showed a 4oz Depron Spitfire. 22" wing span; 2cell 360MaH Lipo; Armstrong C10 motor; 3 channel. (below right)

All are scratch-built.

I will try to feature such projects after each meeting. Be sure to provide me with some details about your subject.


2009 Mall Show
March 14 & 15.

It's that time again; the club's annual Mall Show is only days away. The tables will be filled with planes and the mall with informative club members . This is a chance to find out who and what RCCD is all about, and a chance to do so while at the Mall.

  • We will be present during normal Mall hours:
    10am to 9 pm Sat. and 11am to 6pm on Sun.
  • There will be an R/C plane raffle.
  • Old R/C magazines will be available for anyone interested.
  • We will have an R/C Flight Sim. for you to get an idea of R/C flying.
  • The Mall has already put the show info' on the BIG marquee out on Gratiot. Look for it as you drive by.

For other information or questions please see the flyer, or contact Gordon Gibbons at

Stop by the Macomb Mall. We hope to see you there

RCCD Members, Be sure to bring your planes and yourselves to this great event.


Ground School on Electrics

At the April 28th Ground School on Electrics, we generated some files from the bench tests we did. The files we generated are available for reference. Click on each link to open the file in a new window. Note that for the last one you will need MS Excel to open it. From there you can enter the data for your own batteries.

1. The effect of Throttle Position on current, power and duration.
2. The effect of prop selection on current and power.
3. Battery charge & discharge current calculator. (Requires Microsoft Excel)

Here is a link that shows an animation of a brushless motor in action.


Handley Page V/1500

The foam model of the Handley Page V/1500 four-engined bomber flies. Watch the short video of this WWI bomber that had two pusher and two tractor engines. I had a great time building it and it was a real thrill to discover that it actually flies!. Don't expect to see it out at the field unless the wind is below about 5 knots though! Wing loading is about 4 oz/sq ft! It has a 64" wing span and weighs 26 oz.

Thanks to Mike P. for shooting the video.



Abel Electronics

Ray W. stumbled on a local establishment that sells a great selection of electronic goods. Stop by and check them out some time. Tell them you are from RCCD.

Abel Electronics.
27201 Harper Ave
St Clair Shores, MI 48081


1/10 Scale Saturn Rocket

If you were at the Toledo show this year, you must have seen the 1/10 scale Saturn rocket on display. Here is a video of its "flight" on April 25th.


RCCD Ground School for February - Gas Engines

Tuesday Feb 24th, 7:30 pm at The Harrison Township Hall.
See flyer for details.


Chapter 13 of the EAA gave us a great welcome at their February meeting. John McCormick and I talked about RCCD club and R/C model aviation in general. We had a variety of R/C models on display, ranging from a 4 oz electric all the way to a 1/4 scale gasser. A couple of other RCCD members (Russ Hope & Henry Keeting) also attended.

The many questions we answered would indicate that the topic was of interest to the CH13 members. We hope to undertake a joint activity between RCCD and CH13 this summer. Stay tuned for details.



From the EAA Chapter 13 website:

"February 5, 2009

Noel Hunt and John McCormick from the Radio Control Club of Detroit will be our presenters February 5th. Their flying field is just two miles east of Ray Airport.

They will speak about the similarities and differences between building / flying their aircraft and what we do. R/C flying has progressed significantly over the past several years and they will bring various examples of their models. "

Chapter 13 welcomes visitors to their meeting, so join John and me if you would like to. The evening starts with BBQ (please contribute to their donation bucket) at 6:30pm and the meeting starts at 7:30 pm. For more details and directions please see their website.


The StealthE

The StealthE is a 5 ounce foamy that turned out to be a lot of fun to fly. I prepared drawings and Peter VanHeusden has printed them. The plans and a set of building instructions are available for a $3 donation, all of which goes to RCCD. We will have the plans at our RCCD meetings and events and will demonstrate the StealthE when ever we get a chance. Some RCCD members are already building, so look for them at the Ultimate Soccer Arenas. Unfortunately, we can only do a "hand delivery" and cash is the only payment option. Click on the picture to see a short video.

1/23/2009 First Person View (FPV) Systems

The subject of First Person View (FPV) has come up at the last couple of RCCD club meetings. Some background and description may be of interest.

First Person View makes use of:
• A video camera in the aircraft
• Radio transmission of the image to the pilot station
• A video monitor so the pilot sees the flight “from the cockpit”. This monitor can be a TV screen or video goggles.

There is a significant safety issue with this technology. It is quite possible for the R/C pilot to fly the aircraft out of range of the control radio without realizing it. Unlike conventional control, where the aircraft’s orientation becomes difficult to follow before the aircraft gets out of radio control range, with this system, the pilot can “see where he is going”, even as the plane flies out of control range!

Because of this safety concern, the AMA’s position in the past was to ban the use of FPV at an AMA chartered club field. This ban was not a big issue, because the cost of such systems was prohibitive to most AMA members.

As prices have come down, the AMA has reversed this position, but require the following restrictions to assure safety:
(from the AMA web site at

First Person View (FPV) Operations
1. An FPV-equipped model must be flown by two AMA members utilizing a buddy-box system. The pilot in command must be on the primary transmitter, maintain visual contact, and be prepared to assume control in the event of a problem.
2. The operational range of the model is limited to the pilot in command’s visual line of sight as defined in the Official AMA National Model Aircraft Safety Code (see Radio Control, item 10).
3. The flight path of model operations shall be limited to the designated flying site and approved overfly area.
4. The model weight and speed shall be limited to a maximum of 10
pounds and 60 miles per hour.

Details of two products currently available can be seen at these links:
Hobby Lobby

01/22/2009 As of January 20, 2009, membership administration at RCCD is managed by Willie McMath and Steve Surbaugh. Steve replaces Ken Sulkowski. Thanks Ken for your contributions.

For those who have not already done so, remember to get your 2009 RCCD membership applications to Willie or Steve by January 31, 2009, to avoid the $5 late fee. Application forms are available for printing on-line at (on the About Us page:

In order to alleviate the confusion at meetings we ask that you renew by mail. As soon as you get your AMA renewed please fill out an RCCD application form and mail the following to either Willie McMath or Steve Surbaugh. Their addresses are on the forms:
1. Your completed and signed application
2. A STAMPED, self addressed envelope
3. Your Check made out to RCCD
4. Either a photo copy of your AMA card, of your AMA number (we can verify
it on-line)
5. Work cards (if applicable) for the discounts

Your new membership card will be returned ASAP. Please don't mail in your RCCD renewal unless you've renewed your AMA membership.

For those chronic procrastinators among us, after March 1st the initiation fee of $20 is assessed, so get your applications in when you receive this e-mail to avoid either the $5 or $20.

Contact Ken or Steve with any questions. Their contact info is available on


2009 Combinations are now in effect on all locks at the field. PLEASE spin the combination wheels immediately after you unlock any of them - for 2 reasons.
- The lock will be ready for whom ever will lock it (It will not lock if the wheels aren't turned)
- And the combination is not left showing --> security.
Thanks for your cooperation


Indoor Winter Flying - Every Tuesday. 11:00 am -1:00 pm. 5 sessions for $25. See flyer for details.