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Event Reports

SFDRCM Open House and Sale April 11, 2015 Report

The event took place on a beautiful day in the 70s with a small wind most of the day. Club turnout was excellent - thanks guys and gals! Every kind of flying craft was there - sport, scale, electric, gas, quad, even a Easy Stick with an attached glider launch!


Public attendence was good also, thanks in big part to an event notice in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Interested adults and families lingered and interacted with our members. Field entry was aided by the new direction signs that Rich had made. We gave the new SFDRCM imprinted gliders to kids; adults were nostaligic about balsa airplanes! We left the pit area open for the public to wander through, with no bad results, and that encouraged interaction with members. We gained at least one member on the spot and probably a few more to come. Public comments were positive about the friendliness of our members.

Flying was almost constant. At 10am we had a mass flight of 6 Parkzone T-28s, one of the most popular and fun to fly airplanes. They took off together and landed (mostly) together. In the air it made everyone realize how hard formation flying is! Bo and Gogian had helis and ducted fans, Randy had a big gasser, Tom brought a fleet for training, Earle had a variety of quads, a guest flew an FPV quad and let us look through the goggles - cool!


Rex and Dana Silvey really made the day. Rex towed in a Texas size barbeque and donated dozens of raffle items! Lunch was great with hot dogs, chili, cheese and fixings for just enough people. Dana hawked raffle tickets and took in about $278.


Members and public expressed their enjoyment of the day. This was reminiscent of big events of days past and encourages us that model aviation is alive and well!


If anyone has pictures to share, please send them or a link to




Fly In April 11

Good Brothers


 Aeromodeling Pioneers: The Good Brothers Video Uploaded

When the Cindy Good and Mallory Nelson, daughter and granddaugter of RC pioneer William Good visited, they left a DVD that was a very interesting documentary of about the innovative Good brothers. I have been able to upload this to YouTube for all to enjoy. This is fascinating and inspiring look at RC history, with interviews to preserve the presence of these brothers. As with many modlers, their interest in model aviation was coupled with significant technical achievements in other areas. Let us all be inspired by their work and their enjoyment of this hobby.

Video as approx 26 minutes - thank you to YouTube for permission for the extended length upload, and to Mallory and Cindy.

June 8 2017

Flight Experience for Bradoaks Fifth Graders




On June 8, Tom Traeger and Earle Levine gave hands on flight experience to Ms Sherman's 5th grade class at Bradoaks School in Monrovia. In the space of an hour, all the kids took turns on one of Tom's EasyStars. These are great for small field trainer flights. The kids were delighted and showed great promise. A DJI Phantom drone flight took some high level pictures and demonstrated multirotor technology and wrapped up with club balsa gliders. It was the last day of school, so the kids have something to remember for the summer.


These educational outreaches are winning on multiple levels. The kids get exposure to aviation and have fun, the club makes a positive impression on the school, parents and community, and, not least, it is fun and fullfing for the members participating. Please get on board for these events. A little effort gives big rewards.


Star News

National Model Aviation Day Brings Out Flyers, Public and Press August 16, 2014

Despite the "warm" weather, lots of members came out for the National Model Aviation Day event on August 16th. Flying conditions were actually quite good, and there was lots of successful flights. Money was raised for the Wounded Warrior Project. We were fortunate to get mentions from Gail on the Go on KTLA and a listing in the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Interested public member were treated to flying demonstrations, hands on training flights, and a hot dog lunch. Star News / Tribune photographer Sara Reingewirtz eagerly scouted picture opportunities and took notes about our activities. The pictures are archived on the Pasadena Star New photos site. CLICK HERE FOR LINK.

Thanks to Frank Ross and Steve Sahagian for bringing out donated estate item for sale, and Ed Freeman for arranging a delicous popular lunch. Thanks to all the members that showed up and enjoyed the days. Thanks to the mini-heli "swarmers" that gave us our first heli mid-air collision.

SFDRCM Visits High School Group at
  Air Combat USA

Through Dennis Lord and our previous appearance at the Fullerton Airport Air Fair, SFDRCM was invited to visit Air Combat USA at Fullerton Airport and present model aviation to Montebello High School summer enrichment class students. Frank Ross, Ed Roberts and Earle Levine brought a wide variety of aircraft for display; Each talked to the students, conveying the fun, educational, and career aspects of model aviation. A few limited flights were safely conducted in front of the hangar, with no harm to the beautiful full scale aircraft. (Ed's Slow Stick did not fare so well). The student were quite interested, and were invited to the National Model Aviation Day for some hands on experience. The lucky students were then taken for flights in a variety of full scale aircraft, ranging from Cessna 172, Beech Debonair, Extra 300 in P-51 paint, and the Marchetti Air Combat plane. Thanks to Mac and his Crew and volunteers for giving the future aviators a memorable experience.
Click HERE for link to picture album.

Air Combat


Fullerton Airport Day May 10 Report

About a dozen members and family showed up Saturday May 10 at Fullerton Airport for an RC demonstration. The event is a biennial (hopefully to be made annual?) event at the nice Fullerton airport. This is an airport for aviation fans. Not too big, easy to get to, supported by the community, with interesting aviation activity. We flew from 10:30 to 11:30 AM. Dennis Lord coordinated with the tower and there were no full scale interruptions. Flying was safe and almost constant. Murphey’s law popped up when some otherwise reliable aircraft were uncooperative. We could have used a few more members to show up to fly in the alloted time.

 It was just like sport flying at our field with no berm! Loading and unloading were easy and flying area was very spacious. The audience was very appreciative and were very interested in talk-ing afterward.

Fullerton Airport Day 

Gogian’s A-10 was a very popular with dramatic opening and closing flights. Randy’s giant scale Cub looked was an attraction. Bo’s heli flights got a rousing hand. After we flew there was lots of full scale flying activity. RV-7 group fly-bys, hot Hellcat fly-bys, AT-6, Antanov-2, Waco biplanes, OC Fire water drop. Most everything an aviation buff could want. If we do this again, don’t miss it!


Click HERE for some pictures.

Click HERE for the pictures Dennis Lord took



Meetup at Baur Films, April 17, 2014

By Earle Levine


About thirty enthusiasts showed up at Baur Films' studio on April 17, 2014 to meet with cinematographer Tim Baur. Tim say he has been in the business about 17 years, does a lot of automobile photography as well as movies. He is a long time RC flyer, and an early adopter of multicopters in the pursuit of getting the great shot. He emphasized that the MRs are just a tool to get the shot, not an end unto itself, and that newer and better technology will always come along.  It is the artistry and creativity that remains constant.


Here is a Dropbox link to photos and videos I took:


The studio itself drew a lot of attention from us gadget freaks, with RC planes and quads, photo lighting, backdrops and equipment and a really nice kitchen area. Tim was very hospitable and eager to share information. Prior to his sit-down conversation, we handled and discussed his quads and he flew (inside) a very high end and silent hexacopter. Tim showed his Phantom V2 with a new smooth Zenmuse 3 axis gimbal. Nice. I think we were all surprised that his fleet was of "normal" sized craft, and a GoPro was adequate for TV broadcast video use.

Mike Rivard introduced Tim for the conversation. In a true conversation, Tim related some of his on-set experiences on such shoots as Hunger Games, Community, American Pickers, and Modern Family (season 5 "iSpy"). This included a near catastrophe when an crew member mis-launched a twitchy quad that then took off toward the star's head. A quick dodge saved the day, with a much safer relaunch and successful shot. Lots of information was shared rapid fire. Here are a few of the take aways:



* No client wants the standard GoPro wide angle shot and GoPro narrow mode cuts resolution - Tim will try a Ragecam lens conversion to get the FOV and the resolution too. 




*Quality GoPro lens filter adapters are available from Snake River Prototyping

*A GoPro Black has enough low light capability to shoot in the dark with white LEDs on the front of the quad.

*A liter soda bottle top, cut down, may make a GoPro sun shade.

*The other camera directors know is the 5D. You are wasting your time trying to talk them into something else.



*Hobby King FrSky Taranis transmitters are low cost, highly configurable. Open source programming does require some tinkering. May defy the law of "you get what you pay for".

FrSky Taranis

*Good road cases protect your equipment, help you not forget things, make you look professional and impress the crew. Win, win, win.

*Get comfortable with and confident in your equipment so you can concentrate on getting the shot. On the other hand realize that all equipment can and will fail at a bad time. Act accordingly.

*To be a single operator, Tim uses (now out of production) Eyetop glasses, with a small screen on one side and regular sunglasses. Allows shot framing while still having line of sight of the craft.(When Tim brought out the cool Eyetop FPV sunglasses and mentioned they were on Ebay, the group jumped online and bought out the remaining stock. I'm sure the seller wondered what the heck happened.)




*Plan and set up your shot first, then shoot.

*Backing away from a tight shot adds interest

*Avoid flying on your own downwash - it is never steady. During descent, have some lateral motion to avoid your downwash.

*Use "foreground elements" to add interest to shots.

*If the shot is not what you envisioned, stay with it - it may turn out better than you thought and, more important, the client may like it.



*Set etiquette: show up way early, be prepared, check for insurance certificate at sign in. Be cooperative but have the last word on safety - offer alternatives to risky shots.

*YOU represent the whole MR community - act accordingly.

*Tim likes to bill the studio as "equipment rental", rather than payroll employee.He is there to "oversee" the equipment.

*UAV insurance may be available from "Transport Risk Management" insurance agency.

Transport Risk Management


*After a day of constrained, precision on set, flying for others, Tim likes to cut loose with an overpowered 450 with a KK board.



We all learned a LOT from Tim and other industry pros in attendance. Whether sport flyer, casual aerial photographer, pro or aspiring pro, there was enough information to satisfy. I guess we didn't break anything because TIm was gracious enough to invite us back, and even bring our birds. Thanks to Tim and Mike for a good event.



SFDRCM Demo at Monrovia High School Science Expo and
Robotics Competition Report  


For the second year, SFDRCM particiated in the Monrovia High School Science Expo and Robotic Competition. This was on Saturday February 22, 2014. The event included a county wide robotic competition so many schools and teams were represented. The teams dressed in everything from printed T-shirts to dinosaur scales to a knight in full armor. Who said geeks didn't know how to have fun?


We easily filled two tables and a large back area with flying machines of all types. Public interest was very good, with lots of technically minded parents and students on hand. Frank Ross and Ed Freeman were particulary busy talking about model aviation matters most of the day. We conducted flying demos at 11am and 1pm. There was apparently no system for announcing this to the public, so we were pretty much flying on our own, with a few spectators that we had rounded up ourselves. Ed Roberts flew a quad and Slow Stick (watch out for that tree!). Kent, Earle, Tom Traeger, and Joe had fun flying planes and quads, and Jason Wade put on a heli spectacle with small and mediums size helis. Yummy food was available from Duff Barbeque, a mobile food vendor based in Monrovia. Consider them for your next event.


Thanks to the SFDRCM members for their support. Our thoughts were with Gogian Yee as his father's services were that same day, and of our friend Norm Takasugawa.



Daughter and Granddaughter of RC Pioneer to Attend Meeting

Dr. William 'Bill' Good, together with his twin brother, Walter, created and made the first flying Radio Controlled (RC) model airplane; first flew it in May 1937. That first RC plane, the Guff, is in the Smithsonian with a replica in the AMA Museum. They both went on to have distinguished technical careers. We are delighted to have Bill's daughter, Cindy (now living near Syracuse NY), and granddaughter, Mallory visit our meeting and see how far Bill and Walt's creations have come.

Bill and Walt Good with Guff


Click HERE for a good article on the Early Day of RC


 Rich Hanson

AMAs Rich Hanson explaines the complexities of FAA rulemaking. We are currently about 2 years behind the expected timeline.



Canon Vixia Mini

Canon Vixia Mini Camera 

Rich Hanson

Rich Hanson talks with representatives of DJI Innovations, a leader in multirotor technology 

April 27, 2013

Clark Magnet School Balloon

 Clark Magnet School Robotics Club Learns to Fly and then Soars to the Stratosphere

The members of the robotics club of Clark Magnet School (La Crescenta) came to the club field on Saturday April 27, 2013 for some RC stick time. These bright young people appreciated the technology involved, and did very well in the air. They were interested in Earle's quad-copter demo, which fits in with robotic technology.  They told us of their plans to launch a weather balloon with GPS and cameras on Sunday. Sure enough, it successfully reached 85,000 feet. They recovered it in the Angeles forest. CLICK HERE for the story.

May 11, 2013 
Float Fly Report and Pictures


The May 11, 2013 float fly was held in warm clear weather. Air temp was in the 80s+, hotter in the sun. Mr. Jim Pearson (ex RCM editor) was in attendance. Jim Feldmann had a couple of his Super Knockabouts - they are impressive. There were an unusually high number of significant crashes for no particular reasons - just the usual. Ed Freeman and wife did a wonderful barbeque of hamburgers, beans, potato salad and all the fixin's - always a high point of the day. When the dinner bell rings we all come running. Park lifeguards joined us for lunch. Overall an enjoyable day.

Float Fly 05-2013

Click for photo album Photos by Ed Roberts

Open House April 13, 2013 Report

Althought the weather was gloomy, spirits were bright as Cub Scout and parents from Pack 134 (Corona) filled our field. Approximately 20 Scouts and as many parents were shown the fun of model aviation. All were well behaved and enthusiastic. At "ground school" some showed a good bit of knowledge of aviation. All seemed to gain some new insights. On the flightline, each got to experience hands on flight. Like any other activity, some were "naturals" flying with little assistance, but all showed the ability to become good pilots. When not flying the Scouts enjoyed tours of the pits, and investiging the local insect population. A hearty hot dog and chili lunch was prepared by Ed Freeman with enough for all. Members were accomdating doing flight demonstations and assisting with the training flight. The only casualty was a trainer that Kent Smith was flying that decided to fold the wing. (No wing tube involved!) . Thank you to all members for making this a special day.


Click HERE for photo album
(Photos Ed Roberts and Earle)

Scouts 04/13

picture credit Ed Roberts


February 2013 Meeting Pictures

Meeting February 13 was well attended. We reminded of Night Fly Feb 16, and Monrovia High Science Day March 2. Fire safety was brought up, with advise to bring fire extinguishers to the field. Show and tell included Buzz' refurbished Super Chipmunk and an awesome EDF Spark from Bo Liman. Guest Tom Keliher (and lovely wife Holly) showed his passion for
customizing interesting engines. He brought a slide show and video of them running. Generous raffle featured a Millenium electric plane, fuel, glues, glow plugs and a beautiful red flight box.


Meeting 021313

Feb 9, 2013
Boy Scout Training Day
Weather permitting, we are scheduled to host up to 30 Boy Scouts for buddy-box training flights on Saturday February 9 at the club field. There is an another event scheduled for March 2 at Monrvia Hgh School. We are becoming the "go-to" club for model aviation educational activities. This is a great way to get a new generation (and their parents) interested in model aviation. Giv



Meeting Time & Location Information
Wednesday at 7:30 PM
Arcadia Red Cross on Methodist Hospital campus
376 W Huntington Dr
Arcadia , CA 91007  map it
7:30 Second Wednesday each month


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