Saturday 22nd June saw the annual Northern Ireland Area Funfly held at Banbridge Aeromodelling Club.
With heavy showers forecast 6 brave soles turned out. Conditions were less than ideal with a stiff breeze that was gusty which made the light Funfly models interesting at times.
We held 4 rounds following the BMFA’s format, Climb & Glide, Triple Thrash, Touch & Goes and Limbo.
The glide was from a 20sec climb and time were low as the winds really blew the models down wind, so you had to sacrifice height and put the nose down to keep model up wind. Everyone managed to get the 10% bonus for landing on the strip but 2min 1s was the longest glide.
The triple thrash was the second round. It’s a simple format 3 touch & goes, 3 rolls and 3 loops and a touch as fast as possible. I was first to go, I got a little carried away and did 4 touch & goes, I always struggled with counting, I still managed 31 secs, probably would have shaved 5-6 secs off that if I had did it correctly. Alistair had some bad luck on his first touch his wheel dug in slightly and the wheel hub broke, leaving him with one wheels to touch with. In the 15-20mph winds, that was easier said than done, he decided to play his wild card and go again. After a quick wheel replacement he was soon back in the sky and good time was recorded, incident free! Iain was going ok in his round, only to find his throttle was stuck full open, after 5mins of racing around the sky, eventually his engine ran out of fuel and he completed the triple thrash in the longest time ever recorded. He too played his wild card and solved the throttle problem. In his second attempt Iain had by his own admission a lapse in concentration, described as too many sticks in the corners syndrome, the engine departed from mount, so that ended Iain’s competition. Sean, Brian and Dennis put in safe rounds and got good times.
Touch & Goes followed soon after the Triple Thrash, the wind hadn’t calmed any, so there were some interesting moments. I managed 28 in the conditions, Sean was next with 16 I believe, Brain got 12, Dennis did well with his light limbo dancer and got 5, Alistair had replaced the broken wheel, but the wind caught him on the tight turn downwind and the plane cart wheeled on him, some repairs were required but luckily Alistair had a spare model.
The final round was Limbo and the wind was as strong as ever, not too many scintillating numbers recorded in the challenging conditions, I caught the string early on, so played my wild card and it paid off I got 24. The conditions were really challenging and the string was cut a few times, but everyone brought their model home in one piece.
The scores were counted up and the final placing were;
1) Matthew Poots
2) Sean Scullion
3) Brian McCartan Jnr
4) Alistair Henry
5) Dennis McNeill
6) Iain Johnston
The heavy rain and winds in the morning probably put a few off coming, but we all enjoyed the day. Thanks to Iain for running the competition.
After the comp we held an impromptu E-soaring competition, a simple format we launched 4 e-powered gliders at once, 30secs climb, engine off, last one on the ground wins. Brian’s modified Phase 6 with a pop climbed the best, his new DX18 sailplane mixing was coming in handy and the glider was flying straight at all throttle ranges, the pod on the top had been causing some trimming problems. My Mystique wasn’t far behind, Iain’s light Phoenix struggled a little on the climb in the wind and Alistair’s radian pro didn’t do too badly for a light foam glider. There wasn’t much between Brian and I, the Mystique sailplane credentials showed through and I managed the longest time of about 7 minutes I believe. Alistair had the Spektrum altimeter fitted to his radian and he was getting good lift at times. It was a fun relaxed end to the day.