CFA Committee News - Oct 2022

Hello everyone.  

This is the first of what we anticipate will be a regular communication, not so much a newsletter. more of an opportunity to stay in touch and encourage feedback from across the CFA membership. Sorry there are no pictures. I’ll try to get some for next time.  

Buckminster 9th Oct 2022

Firstly, the recent competition at Buckminster went well. Roger won the final against Dave Riley with a Sennapod.  No, the designer wasn’t a racing driver, although I believe he was an aeromodeller. It was a 1964 design, originally published in Model Aircraft. I seem to remember it was designed by Tony Degg (Outlaws), but I could be wrong. Anyway, the point is that the model list contains over a hundred different model, even if you exclude the Junior Monitor!!  So, there’s plenty of choice.  It doesn’t have to be a Piranha… More about models later.


Those of us that were at Buckminster will recall that Richard Herbert brought up this subject at the pilots meeting prior to the comp starting. What prompted it was the fact that  Roger Fisher had some cuts missed at the last competition, but it has probably happened to all of us over the years. Richard suggested positioning the scorer at 90 degrees to the downwind flight path. This means that the scorers are close without being directly downwind, and streamer cuts should be easier to see, along with the fact that cuts can be seen floating downwind. Although there wasn’t much floating happening in Sunday’s high winds. This seemed to work reasonably well but there were still some mistakes.  Now, speaking as the world’s worst, colour blind combat scorer I’m not about to blame anyone, but I think we should try to improve things. I’ve been thinking, (Oh no!) and my suggestion is to always have a third man, someone who’s job is to spot all cuts, from both pilots and point them out to the scorers, verify the cuts that have been spotted, and help with the scoreboards. This third person need not have any authority over the other two scorers, he is simply there to help and confirm and agree. This might also help overcome the reluctance that some folks have when it comes to scoring.  Waddya think? Let me know and if you have any better or different ideas, great, send them in. This is something we can incorporate if everyone agrees. We don’t need to change any rules.  

Talking about rules, most of the rules we all voted though at the AGM have been approved.  

Rule Change Proposals

So, in no particular order

Tip Shapes, you can choose your own tip shapes again. The rule reverts to what it was in 2019, last 2” of the wing panel, no extra area or span etc etc. Fill your boots.

You can  move the elevator hinge line forward or backward as long as the plan view of the model is unchanged. Very interesting this one, it means that you can’t alter the plan view of a model, but you can make the elevator bigger or smaller by moving the hinge line backwards or forwards, as long as you don’t go past 11.5” Obvs. I think this will bring a fair few different models into play. You can’t do it to boom models unforunately, cos that will cahnge the plan view. So stop what you were doing Chris! More importantly. This rule change was proposed by Richard Herbert, so will he be using another model? What could it possibly be?? Will it be Yellow??  

Roger Silcock’s Njuurd and Njuurd XL are now on the approved list, radical taper wing thing, the XL is 36 by 11.5” from memory. Plans available from Simon Miller.

Film Covering is now legal. After a prolonged trial during this year’s season, several flyers tried Film or Mylar covering. We all agreed that it was easier, cheaper, safer, healthier and the models did fly a bit better. And then we all went back to covering our models in Nylon and Dope, just like Biggles’ ground crew did 1917. We’re an odd lot, aren’t we?

The Centre circle rule. It was proposed that the centre circle rule be changed to allow for 2 warnings, but the third offence gets a DQ. This rule change proposal was accepted by the CFA, which at the time included two members of the CLTC, without comment and duly put to the vote at the AGM. The vote was 27 in favour, 5 against. However, the CLTC have rejected this proposal on safety grounds. There was no one from then CFA present to represent us at these meetings. The CFA have protested without success but are still in discussions. I will update everyone on tthis as soon as it is finalised

On a related point, since the AGM, a more defined centre circle outline has been used, on Sunday, it was a yellow, firm 1” thick pipe which can both be seen and felt underfoot.  This is now permanently stored at Buckminster for use in all future Vintage competitions.  


This was mentioned to me last Sunday by two people and I witnessed some carelessness myself.  

Chaps, in Vintage combat, once the signal has gone to start the bout, you have 15 seconds to get your model airborne before you start losing any points if you are still on the ground. You do not have to fling the model into the air as soon as the signal to start is given.The reason I mention this, is because it is sort of an unwritten rule, that at the start of a bout, the pit crew holding the rearmost model, allow the pit crew in front of them, to launch their model and move out of the way, before launching their model. Common sense? Yes.   Now, sometimes the crew in front will have a problem, the motor won’t start, its not running properly etc etc. If this happens, as it often does, the rearward crew have no choice but to launch their model. In this case the pilot needs to be aware that the other crew are on the perimeter of the circle and step backwards toward the centre circle, to keep the model inside the outer circle whilst at the same time gaining altitude. Again, common sense.

Additionally, there should always be 45 degrees between the two pit crews.  

Pre entry and the Draw.

For those that don’t know, I’ve taken over doing the Draw for the first round Vintage competitions. I am now the Official Draw Commander in Chief.  I recorded the first one and put it on Facebook and Chris Fisher suggested doing future draws live on Facebook. So I did, and after a few anxious moments it went OK. So, I’ll be doing all of them live in future. Normally on the Friday night before the competition I know not everyone is on Facebook, sorry about that. I can only include you in the draw if you are pre entered. Chalky.  

I originally did this to illustrate that the draw is fair, and it has dropped into a bit of a process. The Pre draw will be done live, the draw for the losers round happens organically as names are entered as they err lose. The Eliminators will be done in the same was as the Pre draw, bits of paper out of a pot, and the last 16  and last 8 will be done in the same way. Adds a bit of drama.  

2023 Calendar

We are currently on with compiling next years calendar. First job is to get dates booked at Buckminster and then we can fill in other venues around it. We have submitted the dates we want, which are pretty much the same as last year, but as yet we haven’t heard back. Alan Bunker suggested a competition in Albermarle, which sounds like a good idea because Alan Gordon, Dave Riley and Martin Johnson all travel regularly to Buckminster and beyond, so it’s only fair that they have a local competition. Last year the Basildon comp was very well received and well attended. If you have a site that is suitable and you would like to hold a competition there, let us know asap.


Going forward we can devote part of the newsletter to equipment for sale or swop. It makes sense in these days of shortages and should serve to recycle combat ready gear to those who will use it. I don’t think we need to include loads of pictures, just a short listing of what you have, how much you want for it and how the items can be delivered/collected. If you use the email  one of us will pick it up and include it in the next edition.  

This months offers

Peter Harvey is selling a complete set of 1/2a combat gear, 2 new engines, Fora and Jak, 4 brand new models, mounts props and line. £400 the lot. Contavt peter on or call him on 07930685588. I think Peter will be at Buckminster on the 23rd


If you have anything you want to say, or ask, please submit it to the email, put newsletter in the subject box so it stands out. I would like to do them monthly, even if it’s just a few lines so contributions will help enormously.

Now, there was something else, really important and fascinating, what was it?? Nope can’t think, it will have to wait till next time..  

Tim, Tony, Richard and Simon.  

CFA Committee
2024 Calendar