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ATTENTION! – A Letter with News Regarding the Newsletter

From the CinC!

FAC NEWSLETTER UPDATE 4-19-21

We continue to have significant USPS mail delivery problems.

Following are the dates that each recent issue was presented to the USPS for delivery.

#316 (Nov-Dec 2020) — Nov. 3, 2020
#317 (Jan-Feb 2021) —Jan. 4, 2020
#318 (Mar-April 2021) —Mar. 2, 2021

Note that it some cases it is taking 4-6 months for delivery of issues!

The problem is NOT that we are late getting the newsletter published.

If you have not done so already, please let Rick Pendzick know if you are missing an issue. One notice is enough; Rick is maintaining a list.  We are asking you to allow a very long window for missing issues to be be delivered. Your patience is appreciated.  If you have FINALLY received a late issue, we would appreciate you letting Rick know.

DO NOT chew out Rick or any other FAC admin, either by e-mail or phone.
The main two (2) people who coordinate publication of the newsletter are even more unhappy than you are.  This mess has made a LOT of work for those few who bust their butts for the FAC out of love for the hobby.

The problem lies ENTIRELY with the USPS.
Please read the above sentence again.

Check back here for updates.

Cheers,

Dave Mitchell,
CinC, FAC

January Web Site Updates

  1. the 12 Comet “Nickel” plans are now available for download in the Library (on the bottom of Plans Page 1)!  These were smaller than the “Dime” plans, about 10″ or 11″ wingspan and even simpler in detail and construction.  Build ’em for fun!  Thanks to Doug Griggs for providing the files and the inspiration to post them.
  2. thanks to an FACer, I have reworked the Kanone List; Our friends who have gone west are no longer removed from the Kanone List.  The “Active Roster” is now the “All Time Roster” and will remain in descending kanone total order.   This will be a constant reminder of those that flew with us and their accomplishments.  We will still maintain a Memorial List in alphabetical order.  Gone, but not forgotten.
  3. here’s another reminder – if you are a local Contest Director, please submit your upcoming contests using the Contest Form.  The event will be added to the Contest Calendar and all FACers in your local area will receive an email reminder of your contest.

If You Can See This Image…

Happy Thanksgiving

To all:  be safe – like this turkey!

ALERT!!!! EXTENDED FAC HOF Voting due to Error – VOTE NOW!

Hello FAC-ers,

I have three announcements regarding the Hall of Fame voting.

1. Many of us are just now receiving our Nov-Dec FAC Newsletters. This makes finishing the Hall of Fame voting by Dec.1st of this year virtually impossible.
Therefore, voting for the 2020 Hall of Fame inductees is extended to Dec. 15th!

2. I failed to include one of the submitted nominees on the list published in the FACNL: Fran Ptaszkiewicz.
Please take a look at THIS REVISED LIST of nominees as you consider your votes.

3. Some of you are on the ball, and have already submitted your votes!
Where this is the case and you want to support Fran’s nomination, you may vote for a third candidate if you choose.

Please send your votes to Don Deloach at:
ddeloach@comcast.net

Thanks, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Dave Mitchell

Another Member Passes – Jim Hyka, from Cleveland

Jim was a member of the Cleveland Free Flight Society and was a gregarious guy – always smiling and joking and having a great time.  He’s one of the last of that old CFFS crew that helped me at the beginning of my modeling.  Here’s what Rich Weber sent out earlier in the week.

Greetings fellow Free Flighters,

Once again it is my sad duty to report the loss of another Stork Squadron member.  Jim Hyka went west last Thursday.

Jim was an active member of the Cleveland Free Flight Society from it’s earliest days. You could count on him to be in attendance at nearly every club function, always willing to lend a hand.  He became Russ Brown’s “wing man” at the contests in later years, helping out with hauling all the equipment and paraphernalia required to run the show. He especially enjoyed the Saturday club building sessions, and rarely missed one.  He was a frequent participant in the FAC Nats at Geneseo over the years, and a proud recipient of the Blue Max.  Jim’s smile lit up his whole face.  I’m going to miss him and that smile a lot.

Use the good wood.

Wingnut

Here is a link to his obituary:  https://www.hinefh.com/obituary/james-hyka

Sad News – FAC HOF Member, Tena Nippert, Passes Away

Tena was always at Vic’s side flying his airplanes.

Here is the obituary:

https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/recordonline/obituary.aspx?n=rotena-dubois-nippert&pid=197103991

Holiday Cheer

Get on your Bad Bleriot and Ride!

Thanks to Lyman Hatz (on Facebook)!

2020 Postal Mini Nats – Results are IN!

Never Ready Eddie Novak has compiled and submitted the results for this most unusual “Nats” That was brought on by the nation-wide COVID pandemic.  In case you don’t remember, we were to hold the FAC Nats this July, but cancelled that and opted for a mail-in Postal contest with eight events.  Contestants were encouraged to fly on their own and submit time via POSTCARD ONLY.  The winners would be selected at random.  This surely cut down on participants as it appears people would rather drive hundreds of miles than mail in a postcard – haaww!!  Regardless, here is a note from NRE that accompanied the results:

Congratulations to the lucky eight winners. The winning post card was “drawn from the hat in
each event”. As you can see there was a good turnout in all of the events. There were also
some mysterious entrants, can you pick them out? The variety of the types of cards was
amazing, from recycled old cards to homemade cards to index cards, true FAC imagination.
Comments were “hand wound and flown in the back yard”, “small motor and low turns so I
wouldn’t lose it”, and of course “eat tofu”.

FLYING ACES CLUB SALUTE to ALL!

Thanks to the devoted mini-CDs for receiving all the entries. Eddie notes elsewhere that all entries were put into a “hat” and the youngest attendee at one of their local Connecticut contests drew the winners.  The results prove several things to be true:  1) you can’t keep Tom Hallman and Wally Farrell down, 2) Chambermaids will win, and 3) people can get their first kanone anytime, anyplace!

Here are the results (more comments below the results):

Hi-Start Scale Glider:  Ed Pelatowski, CT

JetCat:  Tom Hallman, PA

FAC Peanut:  Bruce Foster, NJ

Simplified Scale:  Wally Farrell, VA

2-Bit plus 1:  Dan Driscoll, FL

Dime Scale:  Franklin Venturini, CT (First Kanone!)

No-Cal:  James Martin, GA

National Air Races:  GEORGE Skelly, MA (clerical error pointed out by William Skelly)

Remember, High Flight Time didn’t mean you won – these were random selections.  There ARE some rather spectacular times in there:  Linda Wrisley in California, submitting 48 seconds with a Lockheed StarJet JetCat (its a canard!), she also put in 333 seconds on a Supreme Traveler 2-Bit!  Doug Beardsworth bravely submitted 4 seconds on a U-2 JetCat – and he also entered his COVID 8″ NoCal Rare Bear for 6 seconds!  I am going to need to have a sit-down with my flying pal, Ron – a Bonzo doesn’t qualify for the NAR (~sigh~).  Regarding Wally and Tom winning, don’t be bitter – Hung shines on all of us sometimes; he just shines on them a lot more!

Well done, everyone!

Russ Brown – Gone West

We received this from Rich Weber last evening:


Stork Squadron – the End of an Era

Greetings fellow Free Flighters,

It is with a heavy heart that I bring you the news that Russ Brown has gone west.  I received a note from his granddaughter late yesterday informing me that Russ passed peacefully, with members of his family by his side.

It is not too much to say that Russ was the backbone of the old Cleveland Free Flight Society for many years.  He was the fellow who made all of the flying field arrangements with the folks at LCCC, got the AMA sanctions, submitted the contest dates to Model Aviation for posting on the calendar, did the FAC Scale judging, tabulated the scores, made up the contest forms, sent in the contest reports, and handled the kanone reports, not to mention hauling tables, chairs, and a big pile of plans to the field and home again in his trusty Saab.  He was probably the longest serving of a long line of editors for Crosswinds, and certainly the one with the most distinctive “flat hattin'” style.  As an early convert to the FAC style of flying, he brought the local club around to embrace the FAC, too, and created the Stork Squadron as the third official squadron in the national organization.  He was a regular volunteer at the FAC Nats and Non Nats over the years, usually serving in the capacity of a Scale judge.  Russ was rarely seen on the flying field without his camera in hand, which is a practice that carried over from his days at the Cleveland Air Races in the 60s and 70s.  Some of his photos show up in Reed Kinnert’s air racing history books.  He was a quiet guy, with a wry sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye, never very comfortable in the spotlight, but he always wore his Blue Max with pride.

Compared to many of you, I came into the CFFS late and got to know Russ after he had essentially stopped modeling.  He was the guy at the contest who would always find a way to get the new kid into the game and offer encouragement.  And that big pile of plans was a treasure chest for me.  I think one of the most remarkable things about Russ was his willingness to lend his incredible aviation history expertise to any and all.  It was almost comical when he would overhear me mention some slight interest in an obscure aircraft, and a month or two later, he would drop a large pile of documentation on the type into my lap.  Those
were the beginnings of many modeling projects for me.

Due to the current public health emergency, there will not be a wake.  I will send along more information as I get it from the family.

Use the good wood!

Wingnut


As Rich says, Russ dedicated himself to the FAC and the CFFS.  By the time I found the Cleveland group, Russ had already stopped flying.  He stopped at 45 kanones, but he was the CD for every monthly contest.  His boxes of free plans were an inspiration to me, too.  Who knew there were so many airplanes to build?  He gently and quietly encouraged me to build and fly.  And he encouraged my plans; he was a tough editor, as he had me rework the Falcon Special II plan for the Crosswinds about five times until it met his (or came close enough to) his standards for the little racer.

I miss those Cleveland contests in the late 80s and early 90s.  These were my only contact with Free Flighters and the FAC, and it took me about two hours to get to a contest.  So, I had no meetings, no building buddies, nothing – except driving north to Lorain County Community College (LCCC) and flying with Russ Brown, Gordon Roberts, Del Balunek, Dennis Norman, Jim Hyka, and – eventually – Rich Weber.  Of course, there were several others, but Russ Brown, the Blue Fox, was the leader and a mentor to me.

This was in the late 90s, I think. This had to be in Lorain, Ohio, as I don’t recall Russ ever traveling to contests other than Geneseo.

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