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Indoor Free Flight Forum => General Discussion => Topic started by: SP250 on July 09, 2019, 06:02:49 AM



Title: Scale Rules Review
Post by: SP250 on July 09, 2019, 06:02:49 AM
Dear scale indoor modellers:
A review of all scale class rules both indoor and outdoor is underway, please see note below.

‘On behalf of the Scale Tech Committee, Doug Hunt is reviewing the FF Scale rules for all classes, indoors and out, with the objective of encouraging more entries, widening the choice of subjects and reducing the time and effort required to judge competing models.  Any proposed changes will be reviewed and ratified by the STC in October for potential implementation in 2020'.

If you have any views on how the current rules might be improved then let Doug know on [email protected] within the next month or so.

Please reply to Doug via email only, NOT by posting on here, as he is not a frequent visitor and your views will be taken into account for discussion at the STC meetings.

Regards John M


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 09, 2019, 06:55:16 AM
Please reply to Doug via email only, NOT by posting on here, as he is not a frequent visitor and your views will be taken into account for discussion at the STC meetings.
Hi John, agree but the two are not mutually exclusive and I think discussion on here might be a good thing.
I'll kick off by saying that things speed up considerably if you only have one judge!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: SP250 on July 09, 2019, 07:30:15 AM
Sorry Bill, the wording of my post sounded like discussion was not allowed.

Clearly that is not the case, and all discussions are relevant and valid. 
However if people want them included at the STC for consideration, then by all means discuss here, but also their views need to be sent to Doug.

Incidentally, I have forwarded to Doug all the replies I received from the last time Andy Sephton wrote in the BMFA News about rules and combining classes 18months or so ago. 
So this is the next round of discussion somewhat modified by the last round opinions and how increasingly hard it is to get good judges or train new ones up to a good standard.

John M


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 09, 2019, 08:47:35 AM
Sorry Bill, the wording of my post sounded like discussion was not allowed.
John M
No, John, I didn't take it that way. Discuss away!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Pete Fardell on July 09, 2019, 11:32:08 AM
Andy Sephton has made his  suggestions in the current BMFA News too. He thinks that it would be a good idea to combine CO2, rubber and electric into one class in indoor scale in order to make room for an intermediate scale class as a bridge from kit scale. He invites comment,  so once I've mulled it all over a bit more I shall tell him my views again and will tell Doug too as John suggests. Instinctively though, I really hate the idea of getting rid of open rubber as a stand alone class. It's the class I aspire to, it's the class I always enter (as well as kit scale) and it's the class I hope to get better at. I think that's probably what I said 18 months ago too.

On a more positive note, I don’t really mind how scale classes are judged so long as the rules are clear. So any changes which make judges’ lives simpler must be worth considering.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 09, 2019, 12:29:11 PM
I've said before that I'm not at all keen to see the open classes combined ... I would rather see kit scale go first to be honest ... and I think Kit Scale is great.
We already have people capable of winning all 4 traditional classes at once, so why make the jump to open even harder by reducing the opportunities to compete in open?


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: TheLurker on July 09, 2019, 01:02:54 PM
Quote from: Pete Fardell
Andy Sephton ... He thinks that it would be a good idea to combine CO2, rubber and electric into one class in indoor scale

...any changes which make judges’ lives simpler must be worth considering.
The Parish Idiot writes...

A question.  Does combining these three bias the flight element in favour of electric then CO2 over rubber powered models because of improved motor performance/endurance?

If that's true (and I accept it may not be) then some form of handicapping rule(s) will probably be needed to level out the differences in available power and power source endurance for the flight element.  This would complicate the judges lives, no?

Supplementary question.  Assuming that the available power to weight ratio favours electric over CO2 over rubber will this not also bias static scoring in favour of electric/CO2 as models using these power sources can afford the weight penalty of additional scale detail and coloured dope finishes?


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 09, 2019, 01:08:08 PM
Quote from: Pete Fardell
Andy Sephton ... He thinks that it would be a good idea to combine CO2, rubber and electric into one class in indoor scale

...any changes which make judges’ lives simpler must be worth considering.
The Parish Idiot writes...

A question.  Does combining these three bias the flight element in favour of electric then CO2 over rubber powered models because of improved motor performance/endurance?

If that's true (and I accept it may not be) then some form of handicapping rule(s) will probably be needed to level out the differences in available power and power source endurance for the flight element.  This would complicate the judges lives, no?

Supplementary question.  Assuming that the available power to weight ratio favours electric over CO2 over rubber will this not also bias static scoring in favour of electric/CO2 as models using these power sources can afford the weight penalty of additional scale detail and coloured dope finishes?
Yes, yes and yes.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 09, 2019, 02:14:47 PM
I think Lurker has spotted the problem well. Why on earth create a handicap system that would take up more time than just running a separate class?
I honestly think that more "top tier" classes would be the answer ... including viewing kit scale as a top tier event . It would still have the easiest access for the less experienced.
Jon would then know for sure that he has beat all comers when he wins .... again!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Squirrelnet on July 09, 2019, 02:16:31 PM
Quote
A question.  Does combining these three bias the flight element in favour of electric then CO2 over rubber powered models because of improved motor performance/endurance?

Quote
Yes, yes and yes

I feel the same about the outdoor classes. I feel it would inevitably lead to domination of the most successful form of power. An outdoor diesel powered model with a distinct glide phase is at a disadvantage to an electric model with its smooth transition and powered glide.

 Combining classes into the same running order, such as the Eddie Riding last week or so ago, to speed up the running is a great idea but I would be opposed to the combining of the class definition into a general open class I think that could lead to reduction in the diversity of the models which would be a real shame.

On an indoor note how about a flying only class? maybe to run along side the open classes. Could that attract some new entries with a stand off scale look and no static judging ?


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 09, 2019, 02:29:42 PM
Flying only would be a good idea, Chris .... it could be run with static judged models as the flying judges do not need to know which models have been static scored. The reveal at the end could be quite exciting too.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Pete Fardell on July 09, 2019, 03:17:05 PM
Just to clarify... when I said, “Any changes which make judges’ lives simpler must be worth considering”, I didn’t mean changes to the classes themselves (ie scrapping or combining classes etc.) I just meant changes which speed up the judging of the classes as they are now. I don’t know- maybe something like letting owners of previously judged models submit the last time’s static score sheet with their docs, perhaps with a signature to say they haven’t changed anything since.

I think Chris’s indoor ‘flying only’ class has legs too. Works well outdoors for both free flight and RC scale and immediately widens the choice of more unusual subjects. I’m not quite sure how it would fit alongside kit scale though (which is so successful that it shouldn’t be much messed with in my opinion).


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 09, 2019, 04:01:11 PM
I'm not sure what indoor flying only would achieve. Outdoors it sort of works because of the vagaries of outdoor flying. Indoors, where models just go round and round and hit walls if they don't, the temptation will be to build diaphanous models and they will be very difficult to separate. It's difficult enough separating them outdoors.

Incidentally, in BMFA News, Andy says entries are declining in the Open classes and rising in KS, but is that true?

Rubber and CO2/electric classes are not compatible indoors (and nor are electric and IC outdoors). Rubber will decline and the combined total entry also. It is not fair on those who have supported these classes for years. We could overhaul the rules, reducing the importance placed on detail, but really it's a red herring.

Prior to each Indoor Nats there has been concern about fitting it all in - we always do. Going to one judge on static would reduce time taken to a fraction


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Squirrelnet on July 09, 2019, 04:19:48 PM
My thought with flying only is it may prove attractive to modellers who have been entering kit scale but who dont fancy the extra step of building to a higher static marking standard or have finished in coloured tissue .It would be the sort of thing that something like Jon’s Camel could do well in and could suit other poorly documented designs. Ofcourse it could produce a raft of similar designs but that hasnt really happened in kit scale, if anything its making some modellers try to  build something different

I appreciate it could get close in judging it

Chris


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Pete Fardell on July 09, 2019, 04:56:05 PM
Andy says entries are declining in the Open classes and rising in KS, but is that true?
Don’t think it is. Or at least it’s not the whole picture. Even if numbers have been quite low in the open classes lately it seems to me that a lot of people in kit scale are gradually gearing up to entering an open model, and a swelling of numbers in those classes  this year or next wouldn’t surprise me.

Bill, what are the arguments against your one judge idea? Are some judges against it?

(Incidentally, the predictive text feature on my phone just tried to change ‘kit scale’ to ‘zeitgeist’!!
Spooky!)




Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 09, 2019, 05:21:01 PM
Bill, what are the arguments against your one judge idea? Are some judges against it?
Well, if the one judge doesn't know what they're doing, you're in trouble. But the only judges I've come across who have fitted that bill have been at RC world champs.
I've mentioned it a few times but never got a response - perhaps they didn't think I was serious. One judge could do an Open class in under an hour.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 09, 2019, 05:43:27 PM
Andy seems hell bent on making changes to the rules, the reasons for which I cannot fathom.  I have said it before and i’ll Say it again leave it alone...

I've said before that I'm not at all keen to see the open classes combined ... I would rather see kit scale go first to be honest ... and I think Kit Scale is great.

Yeah seems logical, get rid of the most popular class, makes sense - defo easier for the judges if you remove half or more of the entrants... ::). Russ you’ve never really hidden your distaste for kit scale before, why is it suddenly “great”?  I’m confused..  ???

If the rules change and I don’t like them I won’t enter.  I refuse to get into any further yearly (it seems) rule bashing and arguments and discussions that we have.

Andrew


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 10, 2019, 02:59:28 AM
If the rules change and I don’t like them I won’t enter.  I refuse to get into any further yearly (it seems) rule bashing and arguments and discussions that we have.
I agree Andrew. The rules have been evolved carefully over nearly 50 years. Tinkering with them never brings in more entrants; never has, despite what people might say. Only very rarely does a major innovation like Indoor (and outdoor) KS have an impact. People who fly KS like it, and so do those in the Open Classes and Peanut. They should all be accommodated. Debates about number of judges are a red herring; they volunteer and do not receive payment. Rules should only change if there is something wrong. And the same goes for outdoors, where we have classes for all tastes.
However please don't assume that doing nothing will suffice. Whatever our views, it is vital to send them to the whole STC:
https://scale.bmfa.org/
If you don't want this, you have to say so. We know what happens if you 'assume' a result.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Pete Fardell on July 10, 2019, 03:30:57 AM
Yes, a quick email saying “Please leave it alone” doesn’t take long at all.

In recent years though, there has been one new thing that’s given a huge boost to the long term prospects of scale flying competition in this country and is inspiring many more people to be take part...

it’s called the Vintage Model Company!  ;D


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 10, 2019, 05:34:09 AM
Andrew,
I don't know what planet you are on sometimes?
My only problem with Kit Scale is that some want it as a top tier event whereas exclusions apply that do not quite allow that to happen.
I prefer the top tier option with no restriction on expert entry ... so please, not "distaste" ... I would just prefer a slightly different angle.
Please remember that there was a time before Kit Scale ... It was a great event then ... It is a great event now.
Another crass way in which you have jumped on my posts.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 10, 2019, 06:02:58 AM
Can I just say that nothing has pleased me more than the way that Jon has competed in Kit Scale for the last couple of years.
Nothing has pleased me more than to see the likes of Mike Stuart entering Kit Scale.
Nothing has pleased me more than being able to help with the running of the event in the past few years when I have not entered.
I could go on.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 11, 2019, 03:37:17 PM
Oooh!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 11, 2019, 04:36:36 PM
If the rules change and I don’t like them I won’t enter.  I refuse to get into any further yearly (it seems) rule bashing and arguments and discussions that we have.
....However please don't assume that doing nothing will suffice. Whatever our views, it is vital to send them to the whole STC:
https://scale.bmfa.org/
If you don't want this, you have to say so. We know what happens if you 'assume' a result.

Thanks Bill good point.  Done to Andy, Mike and Jon...in summary it simply says “leave things be”

Andrew


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 11, 2019, 05:32:21 PM
Had a reply.  Apparently leaving the rules and classes as they are isn’t a valid opinion or option to be considered, apparently there must be changes to them...

Andrew


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on July 11, 2019, 06:05:18 PM
I think I have lost the plot..........change for changes sake..... will come back in the morning  to see if I then understand.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 11, 2019, 07:00:14 PM
Yes, a quick email saying “Please leave it alone” doesn’t take long at all.

In recent years though, there has been one new thing that’s given a huge boost to the long term prospects of scale flying competition in this country and is inspiring many more people to be take part...

it’s called the Vintage Model Company!  ;D
I agree that there is no essential need to change anything.
I had a look at the ratio of numbers between open/duration/kit Scale this year ... each looks healthy enough.
I agree too re. VMC, but was surprised to notice that only 3 or 4 models in kit scale were VMC. Good in a way to see such a diverse entry though.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: TheLurker on July 12, 2019, 12:33:17 AM
Had a reply.  Apparently leaving the rules and classes as they are isn’t a valid opinion or option to be considered, apparently there must be changes to them...

Andrew
That's just ... silly.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 12, 2019, 02:18:56 AM
I will expand, as I think I ought.

The reasons given was that the entrants are falling (?) and the event is loosing money.  Only 2 or 3 years ago we were basking in record numbers and struggling to fit it in one day, so what happened in such a short time to make it loss making and the entrant to small?  Obviously we can look at the numbers of entrants but we are not privy to the accounts (at least I don’t know where to find them)

So the answer to this is changes as proposed to bring in new blood, and the proposed changes are a means to do that, or there will be no Nats, (edit) due to the age of the current participants.

Bloody hell I said i wouldn’t get involved .... and here I am.  I am a (crass) idiot!

Andrew


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: danmellor on July 12, 2019, 02:58:53 AM
In an event which at best may get 50 entrants, it doesn't take a lot for "personal circumstances" to knock out 20% of fliers in one year. I doubt the fluctuating entry numbers is all about the rules...

Dan.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 03:00:17 AM
Andrew,
I have enough troubles in the real world .... aeromodelling is my escape from this. Currently I am able to do about one tenth of the aeromodelling that I would like to do.
You constantly take issue with my posts ... you have had two digs since my last "defence". What can I do to make this stop?
I do not remember a time when I have initiated these "exchanges".



Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 03:14:22 AM
In an event which at best may get 50 entrants, it doesn't take a lot for "personal circumstances" to knock out 20% of fliers in one year. I doubt the fluctuating entry numbers is all about the rules...

Dan.
I agree Dan .... there will always be a natural fluctuation in the numbers. However, you are an example of where a slight tweak of the rules would have enabled you to not have to miss entering, as you know.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Pete Fardell on July 12, 2019, 07:46:04 AM
I also got a nice prompt reply from Andy S. He doesn’t say anything to me about change being inevitable, but does say:

“First off, I have to say that the views in the column are mine alone and they don’t reflect those of the Scale Technical Committee … yet! Any changes would have to be proposed, argued, debated and agreed by the STC.”

I’m not too worried about his combined classes proposal as I’m sure that the opinions of those of us who already compete in those classes will count for a lot with the STC. Bringing in new blood’s all very well, but keeping the older, slightly knackered* blood is essential too isn’t it?


(*Only speaking for myself here. I know you guys are all still in your physical prime!)


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 07:58:27 AM
Pete,
Yes, I would hope that the opinions of those taking part in the open classes already, are taken into account!
I'm hoping that the new blood will also consist of knackered old blood like myself .... I've taken over a decade of procrastination already ... hopefully not to see any class disappear as I step up to the plate! (When I say step, it will probably be shuffle by then)


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on July 12, 2019, 08:02:52 AM
Yes ...... forgive me but as a spectator I may have missed something. Is is reasonably clear that the drop in entries is due to a reasonable degree to the present "rule"?  Or is it something else.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 08:13:36 AM
David,
The current rules and events did give a record entry, so I do not think the rules themselves have a great bearing on numbers.
I think the open classes are great for getting spectators in the hall. I think it has to be a showcase in this respect ... especially as we do not have the fun fly hall like we did at Nottingham.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 12, 2019, 08:48:31 AM
Pete,

If that is true ie the whole thing is up for debate - So I represented my view that changing the rules and classes shouldn't happen as Bill correctly said I should.

I think the crux might be that Andy sees it as broken, so I have said in my feedback in the form of simply it "if aint broke then don't fix it..."

I dunno, off on hols, hopefully this will have all blown over by then...

On Russ's point perhaps the lack of the fun Fly hall has been detrimental to the Spectator numbers - It does make sense...

Russ I have sent you a PM



Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 12, 2019, 08:57:02 AM
I think as a starting point we need to accept that fiddling about with rules will have no significant effect on participation. There is no cohort of modellers sitting at home, waiting for a 'new rule' to encourage them out of their chairs. All that will happen at best is that people may transfer from one class to another, and the overall numbers remain the same. Combining Open classes will instantly lose about five entries, and cause resentment.
I am not entirely clear about the reasons for all this. At first I thought it was to improve things by having (yet) another class. Now it seems to be a need to increase income. Perhaps it is time to use the £3000 Interscale fund held by the committee, the interest from which is taken to support RC team travel. It was kept as 'start up' money for future Interscales but that is not going to happen, so it should be used for indoor.
Numbers fluctuate for all sorts of reasons- I remember a total entry of 5 at the outdoor Nats in the 80s. The logical thing would have been to abandon it. Now we hope for about 25. No disciplines I believe are increasing, and scale is doing better than most. I also fly duration, and numbers are dwindling rapidly. It's age.

I've just seen Andrew's point about the second hall, and it makes sense


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Ex Member on July 12, 2019, 09:05:32 AM
Bill to be fair it was Russ's point, I simply agreed...

But I guess to fix it is easier said than done, the Nottingham site was pretty unique don't you think?

Andrew


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Newbie_John on July 12, 2019, 09:39:03 AM
I've been a bit nervous about contributing to this discussion (read my username!) for fear of evoking "We tried that 20 years ago and it didn't work response" , but here goes ;D

For me there's always a problem balancing performance with participation - you don't want to either disillusion newcomers or lose excellence.

I have a couple of separate ideas for discussion:

First thought - Why not "Grade" participants on their entry form into (say) M for Master Builder, C for Concours builder, N for Newcomer builder.   
 The qualifications would be:
M - has won the class in the past
C - has come 2nd or 3rd in the class in the past
N - everyone else.
This could be applied to every class of aircraft, and involves no extra flying or judging time, just separation at the results stage so that each entrant is only actually competing against the others in their grade. At the end of the contest, the top C grade will automatically become an M grade, and the top two N grade will move up to C grade

This probably needs refining, but looks to me like it could encourage competition throughout the field in each class. (More trophies to present, too!)
If the results of the last 5 Nats were used as basis, that could give for 2020
Open Rubber - 3 participants in M grade, 2 participants in C grade, the balance (averages at 6) in N grade.
Kit Scale - 3 participants in M grade, 7 participants in C grade, the balance ( avg 10+) in N grade.
(NB - a competitor could be in different grades for different classes (or not ;))

Second thought, to encourage beginners ( me!) to participate.
Kit scale is an obvious entry to the scale world indoors, but is still open to the expertise of experienced modellers. Why not have a sub-class for "As per box" aircraft? Again, no additional flying or judging time, but allowing modellers with less experience to be judged against each other rather than the whole field.
"As per box" would mean just that - box wood, tissue, propeller, wheels, decals etc. No building from plans using competition wood, no converting to electric etc, no "weathering" or adding detail. If it ain't in the box, you can't use it!
(I know that will encourage folk to look out for optimal kits - great!)
The first two in "APB" have to go in the main class next year, regardless of their model - this is about getting modellers in and improving their standards.

Well, if you're still awake, what do you think?

regards,  John

 


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 09:50:14 AM
Andrew,
Please speak to me only on the open forum .... unless you have happy words. Edit: no insult intended for my part, things are easier in the open.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 10:43:41 AM
Keep the ideas coming John .... I must admit that I had a similar thought with Kit Scale so that winners/experts were not excluded, thus extending the shelf life of a good competition kit scale model .... but I share your fears of upsetting someone or re-inventing the wheel!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: SP250 on July 12, 2019, 11:09:57 AM
Look Guys - there are a number of issues, real or imagined going on here.

I guess I can write freely, as I am among friends, even though I am still on the STC, we all want a good outcome at the end of the day.

1. The number of entries has gone up and down over the years - down in the last two years since the record of 50+ in 2017, 40+ in 2018 and 32 this year.
2. It is harder to get judges and there are few volunteers to learn how to do this, Paul Rich and Paul Hoey being two notable exceptions, who offered to learn and also help judge in the last couple of years.
3. Financially Walsall is not cheap, c.£1400 for the day and another chunk to get 3 hours on the Saturday to set up and for people to get some trimming time in.
4. The RC indoor scale has been held at Shawbury purely because it is cheap, £360 for the whole day.
5. issues in order of priority a. Finances, b. Judges (and the time they have to spend), c. Entries.

Now the income has to cover the costs, after the RC indoor nats a discussion with the pilots suggested they would be happy to pay double the entry fee as long as it was held at a better venue (Shawbury being deemed to have too many steel beams, obstacles and poor lighting to see the models).
So provisionally a two day event is booked for Walsall next April.  However a doubling of the RC entry fee still leaves the income deficit at about £1000.  Unless there are about 30 entrants.  Maybe some of you will also have a go at the RC side and do the FF on Sunday - I don't know.  Utilising the Interscale budget is also being looked at as a backstop although I would like to see it preserved and for the UK to run another event (not everyone goes to Nijmegen).

What Andy Sephton has written (solely his opinion at this stage) is to try and combine/simplify and even move Peanut and Pistachio to the duration nats is to ease the considerable burden of judging.  Not because the class needs it, but to reduce the number of judges (Bill has gone straight to the crux of the problem in suggesting one judge per class).  I personally think two are still needed, as newbys can be teamed with experience and also two discussing can ameliorate any prejudices one judge may have over a certain kind of aircraft.  It happens - so don't ask!  Especially at the World Championships if anyone read the article in RCM+E last August.

The last time Andy proposed such radical changes, on the whole, those who already enterd the open classes said leave them as the are and those who had not entered open wanted simpler rules to make it easier for them.  My own view is (echoed by Mike Stuart, Graham Banham, Richard Crossley who are all past open and Kit Scale winners) is the rules work so leave them alone.  What we need is just a tweak for ease of judging and something else doing to encourage entry.

From my the last 4 years experience of doing the organising I am firmly of the belief that considerably more promotion will generate spectators and a few more entries.  Possible sponsorship will provide the financial back up to cover the costs.  Word of mouth ie. when I pick up the phone to personally speak to Richard Granger, Bill Dennis or Paul Briggs etc. to ask if they will judge / run the air race - is one aspect.  But we can all do that to encourage our other local club mates to get involved either building and entering or just spectating - instead of leaving it to Mike and Doug to do it all.

Example: we had a couple of new people at the indoor RC nats this year.  Douglas Cowan came down from Scotland two years ago to see what it was all about, I kept in touch via email and he entered this year.
Another new guy Brian Seymour entered this year, won the F/O class and went away on cloud 9.  We exchanged numerous emails and I suggested his flying was good enough to do the outdoor RC events - he has done two now and is trying to qualify for the Nationals in a month's time and reckons he will have 2 or more club mates entering the indoor RC nats next year. 
Promotion promotion promotion gents.
Paul Tallet, the BMFA PRO, did an excellent job this year for both indoor nats and if that can be built on we can get more spectators and more traders as well as maybe attach a swap meet to the event which will bring in more paying people.

Of course these are just my thoughts and the STC will discuss everything sent to them, FF and Indoor are well represented with Andy, Mike, Doug and myself.
But we are a very niche interest, so many hands make light work etc.
So even if you all only speak to one other likely interested person, then it will benefit all of us in our niche hobby. 
And it doesn't have to be indoor - more entries at the outdoor FF events would also benefit us all.  Last couple of years there were as many really good FF scale modellers spectating in the crowd as were competing.  What does it take to get them to enter?  Answers in an email to the STC please!

John M




Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 11:14:49 AM
Thanks for the clarification, John.
I think this thread is being used to bounce a few ideas about ... whilst these ideas may not be entirely "on point", some good might come out of the discussion.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 12, 2019, 11:36:24 AM
Thanks John, that clarifies the problems and challenges we face and makes it easier to think about what is needed.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 12, 2019, 11:53:11 AM
I will aim at entering either peanut or pistachio next year .... this will leave me available to time the open and kit scale flights again if needed. I enjoyed seeing every flight in kit scale and open this year, but I will understand if someone else wants to do it!
Other duties considered, but I would like to be in the hall!
Hopefully the Gods of Football will allow Jayne to help too!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 13, 2019, 05:57:53 AM
Re: Increasing entrant numbers.
I am only an occasional competition entrant.
A potential entrant should not have to worry about keeping their "card stamped". This is our hobby, our bit of fun.
If we can increase the flow of occasional entrants then there will be some benefit. I "crash n burn" more often than not and shuffle off with "the hump" .... but I enjoy it.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on July 13, 2019, 08:20:09 AM
It is in a way all very odd. But looking around most disciplines now are finding entrants are reducing - I am told but I notice that area events do not seem so well attended as they were.  It is useful to read Johns account of things because now we know the enemy.

I have been playing with toy planes for very many years and did not enter competitions because I did not (I considered) have time but in truth I don’t think that was right. Now I am retired I do - or could make the time but I still do not enter competitions.  Why?  I honestly do not know.  The Scale Rules are no deterrent.  There is absolutely nothing there that causes me any concern let alone an attitude of “Can’t abide by that...”

So maybe there are a lot of folk like me?  What would entice me to enter? Again - I don’t know!

I admire those who organise these events - the time they give!  So feel slightly guilty!  But only I can do something about it.  I can if minded build a reasonable model and get it to fly.  So what I need is motivation.  There is no deterrent, every one is helpful and friendly and the atmosphere is good.  I really do need to have a serious chat with myself.

Anybody any other advice or ideas?


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 13, 2019, 09:01:09 AM
"What would entice me to enter?"

Free tea and biscuits? ::)

(Flippancy included  :) )


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 13, 2019, 09:08:51 AM
The sponsorship by VMC worked well at the Peterborough Flying Aces .... the field was full of Elves!

Something like a "kit of choice" award for the best placed 1st time entrant might work to some degree?


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: 3view on July 13, 2019, 11:16:08 AM
Maybe beginners could be given a 10% bonus on their static and flight scores until they learn do's and don'ts and the conventions associated with scale competition.

Steve


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on July 13, 2019, 12:22:26 PM
"What would entice me to enter?"

Free tea and biscuits? ::)

(Flippancy included  :) )

Chocolate ones?  And Assam tea.

I wonder how many "scale modellers"  there are from which we could entice some to enter?  I get the feeling not that many?   Not sure about that kind of enticement 3v - might discourage others and you want a fairly level playing field.  Otherwise not really a competition is it.



Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 13, 2019, 12:53:15 PM
I would make it chocolate Hobnobs for you David.

I can call to mind a good few scale modellers that do not compete but yes, they would probably not ever be tempted.
In fact it's surprising how many really good scale modellers do not compete ... even if you do not count the "retired" ones.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: RalphS on July 13, 2019, 03:30:47 PM
I am a not a dedicated scale flier (I much preferred Coupes and these days r/c flying) but I have done a bit.

Why just kit scale? There are lots of excellent "simple" scale models that have been published in various publications through the years. So combine kit scale with published plans of scale models up to a specified wingspan. Call it Semi-scale rather than Kit Scale. Have some simplified rules to specify materials e.g. no introduced foam parts or commercially available bits except for plastic props (for practical reasons), any covering, paint, decals, okay.

Plus and minus points for variation to plan and power unit similar to present that the builder can apply to a simplified scoring sheet completed by the builder to allocate marks for attention to the plan and instructions, Leave a single empty box/es for a judge to allocate "impression", "quality", "appeal", etc.   I found the sight of 2 judges taking all day to assess models, many of which they have seen before to be pretty pathetic. The variation in Kit-Scale static scores from one year to the next for the same model showed that it wasn't the model that had changed but the varying opinion of the judges year to year.

Any cheating - instant dismissal.

Have "themed" events for each competition year e.g.- aircraft up to 1918 one year, next year 1919 to 1945, racing aircraft, naval aircraft, etc., etc. This to encourage people to build another model and "Fike" type models cannot dominate the flying.

Like outdoor BMFA events, why not have de-centralised type contests?  Indoor flying seems to take place regularly all over the country and indeed the world. If people don't want to go to a central venue due to cost, inconvenience, etc., have simplified themed contests that allow more people to just have a go with a simple league type contest. I would suggest that it is kept to just UK entrants or the Czechs would win them all (just joking - but only just!). It might encourage a few people to think about competing at the Indoor Nats. Use the BMFA magazine to promote and report.

Keep Open class but perhaps call it Superscale. ("Open Scale" is very 1940'ish.) Keep the difficult Pistachio and Peanut classes (heavily USA influenced I think) for the true artists, perhaps there are some other classes somewhere in the world waiting to be discovered that might spark some interest.

Just floating ideas.

Ralph


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: billdennis747 on July 13, 2019, 04:27:03 PM
I largely agree Ralph.
I introduced the Mass Launch event at the indoor nats years ago and it began as WW1 types (KK and Veron) and then B of B. They were popular and a spectacle. There was one more but then it fizzled out and it became anything goes, including NoCal. It might be time to try it again, with KK/Veron/VMC


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: TheLurker on July 13, 2019, 05:02:30 PM
Quote from: FreeFlightModeller
...modellers that do not compete...
Count me in that number.  A number of reasons, but the principal one is that this is something I do for fun and relaxation*.  Competitions mean deadlines, of which I have a surfeit in the day job, and all the tension that goes with such things. The absolute antithesis of fun in my estimation. 

Fascinating discussion though, even for us non competing types.

Cheers,
Lurk.

*We will overlook the oaths, blasphemies, curses and imprecations that are uttered when a wing is proving a swine to cover or when an inadvertently placed thumb breaks some vital part of the airframe. ;)


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 13, 2019, 05:33:48 PM
I think it is the deadline aspect that I struggle with.
I describe myself as an "appointmentaphobiac" ... this might even exist as a real condition?
At one point a trip to the barber would give me sweaty palms.
Ridiculous I know.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: cvasecuk on July 14, 2019, 05:16:16 AM
I actually get more enjoyment out of competeing than than just "sport" flying and wish I lived nearer to Walsall.
Ron


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on July 14, 2019, 06:33:39 AM
I think Ron distance for some of us play a par - but look at the guys in the US - driving for a couple of days?  Easy!!

Thinking about it more though in my case it is inertia! Out of the habit!


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: TheLurker on July 14, 2019, 06:55:45 AM
Quote from: cvasecuk
I actually get more enjoyment out of competeing ...
Oh, I'm not anti-competition and it'd be a shame if an aspect of the hobby that many enjoy faded and died. It just seemed to me that there were a lot of posts from people who really enjoy competitions and couldn't understand why others weren't more interested so I thought I'd chip in.

Quote from: cvasecuk
... and wish I lived nearer to Walsall.
Interesting you should say that.  There was a recent editorial (AM or BMFA News) in which it was remarked how central Walsall was and therefore a good location and my very first reaction was, "Not if you live in Scotland it's not."  and I did think that for Northumbria, Cornwall and some parts of Wales* it would also be a long** old trek and would be likely to require at least one night, possibly two nights, B&B which, apart from the time involved, racks up the cost quite quickly.  

I suspect Walsall may be the best compromise between location, cost of hall, size of hall and availability so there may be no practical alternative, but a competiton moving between a more northerly location and more southerly location on alternate years might encourage a higher average attendance.  It'd be a swine to organise though.

I'll shut up now.

Lurk.

*Even trips from the bottom RH corner are likely to be "fun" by the time you factor in London's Outer Orbital Car Park.
**Obviously not by antipodean or transpondian measures, but for this tight little island these are vast distances. :)


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: SP250 on July 14, 2019, 02:44:15 PM
Well Lurk -

When you decide to do the organising, then you can have it where you like.
But the core of people who compete now; some come from Bristol and others from the Norfolk coast, South and the North, so I don't see a large group of indoor scale modellers waiting in Newcastle on Tyne for the event to be held there before they enter (or anywhere else).

But these are the issues any Nationals organiser has to deal with and quite frankly, at a B&B cost of £36 per night, the fuel bill will be 2 or 3 times that.
So the cost of an overnight stay doesn't really count as an argument againt the event.

John M


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 14, 2019, 03:40:09 PM
It is luck of the draw with the location of an event, but I do have sympathy with those for whom the travelling distance gives problems.
The National Cycling Track Championships used to be held at Leicester... I could go down on my bike to watch ... come back for lunch and watch it on live TV and then go back for the afternoon. I still haven't made it to Manchester for indoor flying or cycling.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: TheLurker on July 14, 2019, 05:16:37 PM
Quote from: SP250
So the cost of an overnight stay doesn't really count as an argument againt the event.

It really depends on your month to money ratio doesn't it?  I'm lucky, I have more money than month, but your hypothetical 36 quid a night + petrol (say 15 quid) + food would more than wipe out my aeromodelling stipend for the month.  As for organisation, yeah it's a hard one, very and I know I couldn't do a better job, but if people will ask for ideas. :)

I really will shut up now.
Lurk.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 30, 2019, 06:16:34 AM
I won't address anyone personally, but I do not like to see anyone leave this forum.

Life is too short ... we do this for fun, so let's move on ....
Come back.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: Jack Plane on July 31, 2019, 04:07:55 PM
I'm late this thread, although I did previously email my views on this subject to Andy Sefton which he forwarded to Doug, Mike, etc.

I have no particular gripe with any of the established classes and their respective rules and don't think that anything  needs to change, except that - from direct experience in KS - I consider it unfair to judge the flying of CO2 and electric powered models against their rubber equivalents.

Everything else being equal (including theoretically the model itself), both CO2 and EP possess such a very different power-profile and duration compared to rubber, which puts rubber-powered models at a demonstrable disadvantage.  In my own case I very much doubt either my VMC Camel or my Lee's Hobbies Bristol Scout could ever be configured with rubber to deliver the duration, height or realism of speed etc as they did with the benefit of CO2 and EP respectively.  Beyond my own efforts, I believe that Dan Mellor's successes with CO2 in the KS class over the last few years substantiate this.

How then to level the playing-field?

I've suggested a split between rubber and CO2/EP in KS, rather than creating any sort of Advanced KS or evolving a handicap system (frankly if someone has 'mastered' KS to any real degree then they're surely ready for Open).  I don't know how practicable this would be (especially given John M's point about organisational and judging issues), but the 'rules' side of the equation wouldn't need to change in the slightest:  static would be judged in the same way as would flying in each of the power-source rounds, the only organisational change would be an extra table in the flying-schedule and results sheets.

If this were to take place for future events, I don't know how many entrants there'd be in the KS CO2/EP category (maybe, initially at least, the same as Open CO2/EP?), but I'd hope that more folk would gain confidence and support both sub-classes, AND entrants in the rubber KS class could at least be judged against their own ilk.

Jon

PS Open has long been perceived - in my own mind at least - as a big leap.  It shouldn't be, just read the rules and play by them, which is exactly what I intend to do for my first entry/ies in 2020... and learn to use a spray-gun!  But Open does 'suffer' in my view from departing from the romance of relatively quick to make, tissue-covered models of our youths towards the scale perfection of (dare I say it) plastic models.  It takes a some kind of mental-shift to accept this, which leap I hope to achieve in the near future.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: FreeFlightModeller on July 31, 2019, 04:37:10 PM
I very much agree with your observations, Jon.
The only thing I would say is that CO2 is very good when it is very good ... there is a degree of re-trimming to compensate for conditions in the hall on the day and it can give problems (ask me how I know!). With this extra difficulty in mind, I feel that the potential superior flight pattern is "well earned". So I would not necessarily put all the superiority down to the motive power. "Best placed Rubber" or "Best placed CO2/electric" awards could be given within the usual "all in" competition?
As I have said before, these are the reasons I wouldn't like to see the open classes combined.


Title: Re: Scale Rules Review
Post by: DavidJP on August 01, 2019, 05:29:41 PM
From my limited experience I also agree.  I take Russ' point about Co2 and there can be no doubt that Electric is the most stable and reliable and i have found it so with small models.  An electric model will almost certainly fly in a regular pattern assuming none of the surfaces have been altered.

As I understand it the idea for a merger is due to time and judging etc.  There is nothing wrong with the rules as they apply to the actual competition - it is circumstances?  Am I right in also thinking that the number of entries is such that they hardly meet the costs but take up the time.  Increasing the number of entries would be nice, and help more with costs but will increase the burden on judges and organisers.  So increasing the number of "staff" maybe the route?