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Club Issues

Old 01-03-2009, 03:43 AM
  #101  
Larry3215
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Dont forget that the AMA has zero power to dictate anything like that.

They are an insurance agent and lobying force and thats it.

They can make rules governing insurance coverage only but they cant even enforce those other than by refusing to pay claims.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:46 AM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by Larry3215 View Post
Dont forget that the AMA has zero power to dictate anything like that.

They are an insurance agent and lobying force and thats it.

They can make rules governing insurance coverage only but they cant even enforce those other than by refusing to pay claims.
I admit I haven't looked at the AMA in that fashion before..
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:06 AM
  #103  
Larry3215
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Many people - especially some of the old timers of my generation - think of the AMA as an enforcement agency like the FAA or something. It has no power at all other than being able to withhold insurance coverage.

All the AMA rules are inroder for you to be covered in the event of an accident. You can do anything you want and no AMA person can do anything to you at all. They cant even kick you out. All they can do is NOT pay an insurance claim.

Now, your club may have the power to kick you out if you dont follow the "rules". They usually do have that power. Also, many property owners may kick you out if your not following the "rules" as well. Again its becuase of insurance coverage. No property owner wants to be liable and the AMA gets them off the hook - IF you are following the rules.

On the other hand - many clubs have huge expenses. Land leases are one of the largest, but field mantenence can be significant too. Then there is the cost of runways. We just got a quote on a paved rrunway for our field 50' x 300' at around $30,000.00 plus or minus. For a club with 80 members that no small change per member. If the club is buying the land thats also a LOT of money per month and a huge down payment.

Unless you have access to free land and zero maintenance costs a club needes to chager a good bit per year or go in the hole. On top of the - events are not free to put on either - food, prizes etc.
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:22 AM
  #104  
dmarko
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Well. I have decided that clubs are not for me.

#1 The Fees vs my infrequent amount of flying
#2 The politics and clique mentality that exists there
#3 Lack of synergy between electric vs gas flyers
#4 Lack of control over what others do
#5 Lack of total good will toward new members
#6 Lack of understanding of e-flight when policies are made or enforced

No wonder some of these other local "gypsy" eflighters don't bother with it.

The NewPortNews RC club that "firemanbill" belongs too seems like the most ideal club and defies many of the above points.

Dave
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:25 AM
  #105  
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Yup,
Although I do not want to appear negative I certainly can see your point..
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:30 AM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by JediFlyer View Post
I ran into the same problem...old pharts that think they know everything and have no ability to get along with the younger crowd...thats why I wont join AMA either..bunch of OLD PHARTS unwilling to change...
LOL
While I kinda don't like the "old phart" remark, it kinda appears to be an international problem..

From U.K.
http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/show...ight=join+club
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Old 01-03-2009, 06:07 AM
  #107  
Larry3215
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I hope Im not being misunderstood. I am all for clubs - I belong to 2 different ones - and I am a long standing AMA member.

The AMA provides several very very valuable services to modelers in addition to the insurance.

Without the AMA backing clubs and doing good PR work, many clubs would NOT exist at all. They would not be able to get permission to fly where they are due to liability issues and "independents" screwing things up for the rest of us.

You all know the ones Im talking about. They show up at the park with a loud model and get a kick out of buzzing dogs and cars and are generally dangerous and inconsiderate. They are why 95% of all public lands are banned to RC flying in many states.

The AMA will help any club get and keep a flying site. they are very good at that.

The other huge huge thing they do is loby for our frequencies. Without there efforts we might not have access to radios at all. Band width is extremely valuable stuff and our chanels - even 2.4 - are constantly being sought after by big business.

We NEED the ama if we are going to continue to enjoy this hobby and not get squeezed into flying short range toys only.

Think about it.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:06 PM
  #108  
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In my opinion, I don't think Electric Flying will ever be threatened in any way. Many non-RC enthusiasts that I hear say that they prefer the quiet electric flying models and usually jump to all the typical comparisons between gas vs electric not having any clue over the hobby itself.

That's why you are seeing many former nitro / gas hobbyists making the switch over to electric models. And not only swithcing over the negative stigma the general public has over gas powered but for the fact many are growing weary over all the problems they are experiencing at the club level.

I am not trying to "down" gas powered.
I can, however, understand the frustration some of those guys are feeling over being restricted in where they fly. Especially after several decades of being able to pretty much dictate where they fly without such things as:
#1 Urban Encroachment
#2 Restrictive Noise ordinances
#3 Bad media against the hobby
#4 Micro Managed Club atmosphere
etc..

As far as Govt restrcitions on 2.4Ghz., HA!
It's like the Gun World.
Once your grandfathered in (re: 2.4) , there's no much they can do or say about. Unless you are in a CLUB environment where the leadership will GO with whatever the GOVT tells them to do.

Dave
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:12 PM
  #109  
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Other local FLORIDA Rc clubs by comparison:

Wow. Now I know what I am really missing here in Naples, Florida.
By comparison, many of the other RC flying clubs are:

#1 Under $100 per year open membership
#2 Many with paved runways
#3 some with indoor facilities
#4 many who say they are not "politically charged" clubs
#5 most with electric powered programs and events


..it's depressing when I compare them to the 2 only choices I have here that are anywhere from 2x to 4x more expesnive and lack the amenities of the other clubs.

However, Cape Coral is about a 1 hour drive north for me....
Take a look at this set-up

http://www.rseahawks.org/default.htm


Link to all Florida Clubs
http://www.rc-airplane-world.com/flo...ane-clubs.html
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Old 01-03-2009, 04:40 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by dmarko View Post
In my opinion, I don't think Electric Flying will ever be threatened in any way. Many non-RC enthusiasts that I hear say that they prefer the quiet electric flying models and usually jump to all the typical comparisons between gas vs electric not having any clue over the hobby itself.

That's why you are seeing many former nitro / gas hobbyists making the switch over to electric models. And not only swithcing over the negative stigma the general public has over gas powered but for the fact many are growing weary over all the problems they are experiencing at the club level.

I am not trying to "down" gas powered.
I can, however, understand the frustration some of those guys are feeling over being restricted in where they fly. Especially after several decades of being able to pretty much dictate where they fly without such things as:
#1 Urban Encroachment
#2 Restrictive Noise ordinances
#3 Bad media against the hobby
#4 Micro Managed Club atmosphere
etc..

As far as Govt restrcitions on 2.4Ghz., HA!
It's like the Gun World.
Once your grandfathered in (re: 2.4) , there's no much they can do or say about. Unless you are in a CLUB environment where the leadership will GO with whatever the GOVT tells them to do.

Dave
Great post'in there Dave, thanks, your bub, steve
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Old 01-03-2009, 05:09 PM
  #111  
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i pay $15 a year but im also a kid. the adult membership fee is $40 per year. my club has a nice paved runway and taxi way.
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Old 01-03-2009, 06:50 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by dmarko View Post
All this in Wasilla Alaska?

Are you flying electric and gas? Or just one or the other?

My argument was over high fees to pay for electric only.

$358+ year for me to fly maybe 1x or 2x per week.
In this busted economy, I don't know too many working stiffs (flying electrics only) that would pay it.

When you weigh the options:
$358 for a new plane or electronics + free flying at many open spaces

vs.

$200 year + $100 startup fee + $58 AMA = $358 = NO extra planes for me ...

All of this of course from a hard working family man with other obligations than RC planes with a limited annual budget just looking to share in the E-Flight experience with a few other enthuiasists.

It about wraps up the argument for me in terms of joining any of my local clubs.
None of the fields are in Wasilla, they are in Eagle River, Birchwood, and Eklutna, which are between Anchorage and Wasilla. There used to be a very nice field in Palmer but it was shut down by the new noise ordinance.

I fly both electrics and nitro. I have heard some of the electric only guys say that they will never be shut out of flying sites because their planes are quite. Well from what I have seen there is a large group of people who will try to shut everyone down who is having fun for one reason or another. All of us (both electric and nitro) need to stick together or we will be legislated out of business.

I not saying that you should join that club, just that I would be willing to pay that much to have a facility like that to use.
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Old 01-03-2009, 08:58 PM
  #113  
Laggard
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Originally Posted by dmarko View Post
Well. I have decided that clubs are not for me.

#1 The Fees vs my infrequent amount of flying
#2 The politics and clique mentality that exists there
#3 Lack of synergy between electric vs gas flyers
#4 Lack of control over what others do
#5 Lack of total good will toward new members
#6 Lack of understanding of e-flight when policies are made or enforced
Amen! That's my list too.
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Old 01-04-2009, 01:29 AM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by dmarko View Post
Other local FLORIDA Rc clubs by comparison:

Wow. Now I know what I am really missing here in Naples, Florida.
By comparison, many of the other RC flying clubs are:

#1 Under $100 per year open membership
#2 Many with paved runways
#3 some with indoor facilities
#4 many who say they are not "politically charged" clubs
#5 most with electric powered programs and events


..it's depressing when I compare them to the 2 only choices I have here that are anywhere from 2x to 4x more expesnive and lack the amenities of the other clubs.

However, Cape Coral is about a 1 hour drive north for me....
Take a look at this set-up

http://www.rseahawks.org/default.htm


Link to all Florida Clubs
http://www.rc-airplane-world.com/flo...ane-clubs.html
Yep -- now, please explain to me why both Tulsa clubs have annual membership dues in excess of $100 per year... You can't tell me the land in Oklahoma is more expensive than the land in Florida!
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:03 AM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by Lieutenant Loughead View Post
Yep -- now, please explain to me why both Tulsa clubs have annual membership dues in excess of $100 per year... You can't tell me the land in Oklahoma is more expensive than the land in Florida!
Perhaps it has something to do with what they have to offer?

My club dues are $40/year. A nearby club dues are $100/year, with a $275 (if I recall correctly) initiation fee.

My club has a grass field. (And please do not interpret this as me complaining; I love my club AND our field.)

The nearby expensive club has an asphalt paved 50' x 800' striped runway. With paved pits and approaches.
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:38 AM
  #116  
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$275 initiation fee! Holy smokes!

I don't reckon they get many new members...
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:58 AM
  #117  
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Originally Posted by firemanbill View Post
$275 initiation fee! Holy smokes!

I don't reckon they get many new members...
Actually, I was reading their newsletter from last month, and it seems they have 3 or 4 new pilots. And 200 currently active members!

They are one of the biggest clubs in the midwest, if not the country.

Of course, having the President of Robart as a member says something too, I suppose.....LOL
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Old 01-04-2009, 04:02 AM
  #118  
Larry3215
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Come on guys get real.

Sometimes there are very good reasons for the hi fees. As mentioned before, paved runways are very very expensive. Land isnt cheep either - even in Oklahoma

One club near me purchased their 40 acre property a few years ago and the members at the time all kicked in a hefty extra $$ to cover the down payment. New members have to pay an extra large "initiation fee" to help off set that old expense. That seems very fair to me. That club also has electric, a well and a toilet and a club house. as well as a very nice paved runway and a grass strip.

The cheep club I belong to flys in a 2 acre field thats often knee hi in weeds and no runway other than an overgrown gravel road. They do have a portapoty but its usually not benn serviced and is unusable.

That paved runway mentioned above probably cost that club $50,000. Where do you suippose the $$ comes from for that type of thing?

The monthly payment on $100K to $500K for several acres (you need at least 15 acres minimum and 20-30 is much better) of land is not cheep. Where do you think the $$ has to come from? Then some clubs have electric and water. Those are not free either. Some have outbuilding and toilets that need service, painting buildings, new roofs etc. Lawns need mowing. Trees trimmed - it goes on and on.

One top of that many clubs offer prizes at meeting and events as well as food and other items.

In other words - running a club isnt free. The money has to come from somewhere.

I know local clubs that are on public land in parks and they have to pay yearly fees as well as lawn and space maintenance and toilet charges. So even if the land is free it isnt really free in most cases.
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Old 01-04-2009, 05:38 AM
  #119  
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Actually, in Oklahoma, 40 acres of flat, cleared land that is suitable for a flying field would cost at least $200,000 here in a small town, if you could find it. Closer to a larger town, it would increase in leaps and bounds.

I know the clubs in Tulsa don't own all of their own flyover areas. They lease some of the space, but don't actually control the land.

It just is not cheap, like Larry said, to put in a club with decent facilities. My runway has no amenities and is grass. I mow, fertilize and water it. After several years off this, I am getting it back into shape. It used to be a full size runway when my Dad was in the aerial application business.

I think I have a plan to get a hard surface that will be 15' X 150' or so. It won't be paved, but will be better than grass. The runway itself is 450' X 75', or that is the part I am maintaining. The hard surface will do to allow takeoffs with small wheeled airplanes, and you will have to be a decent pilot to land on it. But it should make all of us better pilots.

Last edited by Rabbitcreekok; 01-04-2009 at 05:58 AM.
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Old 01-04-2009, 05:41 AM
  #120  
Airhead
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Jim,
I can see that you have been working hard on this project. It will all pay off..
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Old 01-04-2009, 06:29 AM
  #121  
Larry3215
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Originally Posted by Rabbitcreekok View Post
A.......
I think I have a plan to get a hard surface that will be 15' X 150' or so. It won't be paved, but will be better than grass. The runway itself is 450' X 75', or that is the part I am maintaining. The hard surface will do to allow takeoffs with small wheeled airplanes, and you will have to be a decent pilot to land on it. But it should make all of us better pilots.
A few years ago when we decided we couldnt afford a paved runway, we went with a landscape cloth surface and its worked out pretty well.

Is basically a heavy fiber reinforced fabric that is layed over a leveled compacted dirt/sand/whatever underneath. We dug a shallow ditch all the way around the runway and stretched the cloth and burried the edges in the ditch. Its held down and tensioned by 12" nails all along the seams.

We do repairs every spring with adhesive roofing patch compound and scrap pieces of the fabric.

Its been down about 6 years now and is still holding up reasonably well. There are a lot of repairs due to guys crashing and prop strikes, but over all its a good smooth runway. Beets the heck out of dirt or mud or grass

We wish we had done a better job on the grading and compacting of the base though. We get some errosion under neath and there are dips and heaves but its tollerable.

The cost was about $1500-$2000 IIRC for enough fabric, nails, adhesive etc for our 50x300 runway. The stuff we bought came in 12 foot wide rolls but other sizes are available and in different weights.

I have read of other clubs using a fabric thats intended to be used on roads that gets laid down and can then be sealed with hot tar or used plain but I dont have any other info on that.
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:06 PM
  #122  
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Thanks for your response, guys. However, I think you missed the heart of my question. Here it is again:

Why can Cape Coral (http://www.rseahawks.org/default.htm) have such an AMAZING club, with AMAZING amenities (huge 60X600' paved runway, three buildings, flightline, fence, AMA sanctioning, etcetera), and only charge $55 per year -- when, Tulsa clubs offer FEWER amenities, and charge 2 to 3 times as much?

It can not be due to the cost of the land, because land in Oklahoma is certainly less expensive than land in Florida. (I'm not saying that land in Oklahoma is inexpensive, or free -- I'm just saying it's inexpensive when compared to FLORIDA.)

Also, I'm not knocking the clubs in Tulsa -- I'm just trying to figure out what the Cape Coral club did to keep their costs so low, and become so profitable. In the end, I want to emulate that kind of club here in Tulsa.
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:16 PM
  #123  
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Guy,

Have you emailed those club officers directly to find out? That might help if you haven't done so already.

Frank
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:17 PM
  #124  
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Wait a minute.....Guy, are you thinking of starting a club?
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:31 PM
  #125  
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Would a mess of evening fly'in Watt-Heads be a Nightclub?do they have a Karie'o'key on Wednesday??? bub, steve
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