The CARF Models B-2 flies at Weston Park International Model Show for the first time. On take off the B-2 inadvertently heads to the right and just gets into the air by virtue of a fortuitous bump in the grass strip. Quick reactions from the pilot on the ailerons steered the jet away and into its ascent to start its display. After several minutes of scale flight the final descent and landing almost turned into disaster with the B-2 touching down a little too early and bouncing off the undulating grass surface. Fortunately the acrobatic flip resulted in minimal damage.
As for people being under the flight path, the rules in the UK for model shows seem very relaxed in comparison to the overbearing regulations for full-size displays. The glider crew and I were on the runway for some time with model acts going on directly above us (I was the guy running the glider wing on take-off) and the pyrotechnics crew had set up camp just beyond the runway and stayed there almost all day. Just like with real aircraft, there is a minimum seperation distance between the models and the crowd, but it seems crew members are exempt from this. For the full-sized acts at CAA-regulated shows, only "essential" crew were allowed beyond the designated crowd area, but when the models were flying, anyone there in an official role had a pretty free range as long as they weren't totally stupid.
Aerobatic team ground crew
Editor of thisisflight.net
Wind direction usually dictates take off / landing direction as well as which way the pilots fly the race track style oval circuit they fly but if the wind changes the pilots in the air can agree to reverse that pattern as a group. When it's reversed the next pilots to fly go with the new direction until the winds change again (if they do). Also our rules do not allow maiden flights or test flights after repairs or alterations due to the potential risk to spectators. That stuff must be done on the practice days or at your local field in advance of the event or after the event has ended.
As for the mixing of model and full-size, the rules on this have changed recently but the general principle is that this isn't allowed. Many model shows here do have full-size aircraft taking part, but while the full-size planes are in the vicinity, all models must be on the ground and everyone other "essential" crew moves back to the main spectator area, just like at a normal airshow. We're generally much stricter on this in the UK than in the US, and there have been shows where a single parked car or boat near the display area has been enough to scupper an entire full-size flying display.
However, we do allow combined model/full-size displays. A few years ago, an Extra 300 pilot started doing a synchronised display with a model Extra 300 (see video below - not my video).
Last year, the authorities stepped in and said this needed special dispensation; you are now allowed to include a model/SUA in your full-size display provided you have demonstrated the ability to do so safely to a Display Authorisation Examiner, and the exemption is then added to your Display Authorisation. My team was the first to go through this process in February this year and we now regularly fly an SUA within our display. In our case, we made it safe by using glass walls/floors to make sure the drone and full-size planes never share the same airspace, and the drone must be flown by a qualified operator, plus some other caveats. You can see the spectacular results below. The drone footage is anything taken from the air with two aircraft in shot, while the rest was taken with GoPros or a conventional video camera, and I can take credit for the latter!
Apologies for the thread drift but it's a very interesting topic.
Aerobatic team ground crew
Editor of thisisflight.net
The de Havilland DH.88 Comet is a British two-seat, twin-engined aircraft built by the de Havilland Aircraft Company. It was developed specifically to participate in the 1934 England-Australia MacRobertson Air Race from the United Kingdom to Australia. Development of the DH.88 Comet was initiated at the behest of British aviation pioneer Geoffrey de Havilland, along with the support of de Havilland's board, being keen to garner prestige from producing the victorious aircraft as well as to gain from the research involved in producing it. The Comet was designed by A. E. Hagg around the specific requirements of the race; Hagg produced an innovative design in the form of a stressed-skin cantilever monoplane, complete with an enclosed cockpit, retractable undercarriage, landing flaps, and variable-pitch propellers.
Three Comets were produced for the race, all for private owners at the discounted price of £5,000 per aircraft. The aircraft underwent a rapid development cycle, performing its maiden flight only six weeks prior to the race. Comet G-ACSS Grosvenor House emerged as the winner. Two further examples were later built. The Comet went on to establish a multitude of aviation records, both during the race and in its aftermath, as well as participating in further races. Several examples were bought and evaluated by national governments, typically as mail planes. Two Comets, G-ACSS and G-ACSP, survived into preservation, while a number of full-scale replicas have also been constructed.
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