AMA Thanks Its Lifetime Supporters
The Academy recently welcomed Life Member Steven W. Bixby of Woodland CA.
For information about becoming a Life Member, contact AMA Headquarters at (800) 435-9262.
—AMA Membership Department
Busting AMA Insurance Myths, Part 3
One of the many benefits you receive with your AMA membership is insurance coverage for your modeling activities. There is much confusion and misinformation regarding this benefit. Throughout the next few months, we will address some of the commonly asked questions to help members better understand this valuable benefit.
AMA is not an insurance company and does not “write” its own policies. We purchase the various policies and ensure that AMA members receive insurance coverage through those policies. The 2014 Insurance Summary provides an outline of these insurance benefits. You can find a copy of this summary on AMA’s website at www.modelaircraft.org/files/InsuranceSummaryMembers.pdf.
Q. Will my membership dues increase if I file an insurance claim with AMA?
A. No. The insurance coverage is provided to you as a benefit and your membership dues are not based on any insurance claims you may file.
Q. Do I have insurance for my model if it accidentally crashes?
A. Unfortunately there is no available policy that would cover the damage to your model. The only policy currently in place providing coverage for the loss of your model and related accessories, including RC equipment, is for fire, theft, or vandalism. (We will review this policy and provide more detailed information in a future issue of Model Aviation.)
—Safety & Member Benefits Department
[Photos: pt-dottie.jpg (or Arctic circle.jpg if the first one doesn’t work)]
David Johnson, pictured in 2011, celebrated his 92nd birthday by flying a model airplane.
David was the first person to fly an RC aircraft over the Arctic Circle.
An AMA Model Aviation Hall of Fame member, who was the first person to fly an RC model aircraft over the Arctic Circle, has passed away.
David Johnson, 94, of Hemet, California, died May 15 at his home. In his lifetime, he taught more than 100 people how to fly RC aircraft. He also developed a method to teach the hearing impaired how to fly.
In 1976, David fitted his RC Comanche with floats and decided to fly it over the Arctic Circle to commemorate the bicentennial. He and his wife, Dottie, drove 3,400 miles to Yellowknife, Canada, then flew in a seaplane to the Arctic Circle. The model airplane’s flight, which took place on July 12, was featured in Model Airplane News, and there is a video about the flight at the National Model Aviation Museum, in Muncie, Indiana. According to David’s AMA History Project biography, he made an entertaining slideshow about the event, which he loved to share.
He started building his first balsa models in the 1930s, and progressed to FF rubber-powered Scale. David learned to fly full-scale aircraft and spent four years serving with the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II.
After the war ended, he began flying and competing in FF. In 1969, he tried flying RC aircraft and joined the Northrop Radio Control Club. He competed three times in the U.S. Scale Masters.
He spent more than 25 years teaching people how to fly model aircraft—including hearing-impaired students. He taught them how to fly by placing his hands on their shoulders, and gently nudging them in the direction in which he wanted them to move the controls.
David was inducted into the AMA Model Aviation Hall of Fame in 2009, and received the Waldo Award in 1992 for significant contribution to promotion and enjoyment of miniature aircraft.
David is survived by two sons, a stepson, and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. His AMA History Project biography can be read at www.modelaircraft.org/files/JohnsonDavid.pdf.
[National MA Day Logo]
National Model Aviation Day
The second annual National Model Aviation Day celebration will be held August 16, 2014. More than 135 clubs have registered to participate and there is still time to get your club involved. Registration will be accepted through August 1. If your club has chosen not to register this year, we encourage you to start thinking about being involved in next year’s event on August 15, 2015.
You can show your support in 2014 and celebrate the national festivities by attending an event near you. A map has been created on www.nationalmodelaviationday.org listing each participating club and location. Some clubs are celebrating on different days because of scheduling conflicts, so please read the descriptions of the events.
Participating clubs will be accepting donations during their events. All checks should be written to the Wounded Warrior Project, and all monies should be sent to: Academy of Model Aeronautics Foundation, 5161 E. Memorial Dr., Muncie IN 47302. Donations should be submitted to the AMA Foundation no later than October 1. If you have questions, please contact Mandee Mikulski at (765) 287-1256, extension 277, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to everyone who has helped to make this event a great success. Details about the total dollar amount collected will be announced
Turning a block of balsa wood into a propeller is not easy. It takes careful craftsmanship to carve two matching, balanced blades with the correct pitch. Early modeling books have chapters dedicated to the art of propeller carving. The diagrams and notes given in each only serve to prove how difficult it is—not only to carve the propeller itself, but to explain how to carve it.
Elmer L. Allen wrote in Model Airplanes: How to Build and Fly Them, published in 1928, “words are useless in explaining how to carve a propeller; look at the pictures illustrating the ‘Steps in Propeller Carving’ and follow them carefully.”
The museum has hundreds of propellers in its collection, but only a few in various stages of completion. This propeller blank (a propeller form that has been rough cut by a saw from a rectangular block of wood), is a good example of a propeller slightly past the first stage of the carving process. The guides that the creator used to cut the block are still visible in what will become the hub.
The creator also drew guides to help with the carving process. After doing so, however, the creator just stopped working on it. It could be that the person was following the advice of Carl H. Claudy in Beginner’s Book of Model Airplanes (They Fly!): “The best way to carve a propeller is to use a knife on a block of wood for as long as it is pleasant and then buy a propeller someone else has carved.”
If this has whetted your appetite and you are interested in attempting to carve a propeller, many modern and historical resources can be found in the National Model Aviation Museum’s library. Contact Maria VanVreede at email@example.com or call (765) 287-1256, extension 508, for assistance.
[Allen, Steps in Propeller Carving.JPG]
Caption: The graphic “Steps in Propeller Carving” is from the book Model Airplanes: How to Build and Fly Them, by Elmer L. Allen published in 1928. Page 324 shows each step in carving a propeller from a blank. The illustration does not include how to create a propeller blank from a block of balsa wood.
This propeller blank shows carving guidelines.