UK National Championships 2006
August 26,27,28, RAF Barkson Heath

This year I managed to drive to Barksone and back on the Saturday, something of a feat due to my health as you will know if you have been following my exploits previously. Sunday I managed a lift with my father but was definitely feeling the strain a a bit.

Saturday was slightly breezy but otherwise pleasant. The morning was spent as usual trapsing around the trade tents trying to stock up on enough staple modelling stuff to last me for a year, like fuel and balsa wood to name but two. I would sooner be watching the flying, but the state of the model world is getting to the point where you do what I did or buy things by mail order with the postage on top of the price; this means spending a lot of money in one go, but can save in the long run. At this point in time being hit by large increases in fuel (not model) costs and everthing else, I have even less to spend on this hobby so ever penny I can save enables me to keep going a little longer. Anyway, enough of this depressing talk, I got most of what I was looking for, and trundled off to way watch the controlline flying.

For the first time since I started going to the Nat's again I actually managed to catch some control line scale flying. This is very enjoyable because it is possible to watch the flights fairly close up, unlike the RC events which are so hide bound with rules, regulations, and safety issues that (in my personal view) a lot of the fun has gone out of it. I don't find watching a small high speed dot being flung around the sky very inspiring. The trend to bigger and ever bigger models that are easier to see is probably some sort of an answer to this. But where does it stop? Full scale I suppose, and don't let anyone onto the airfields in case something goes wrong. However being close up does not necessarily mean the flying will be good. I witnessed one attempted flight and one decidedly unscale performance, and a textbook one. The attempted flight consisted of a prop constantly coming off the engine during starting until an attempt was called. A very pretty biplane, don't ask me what it was a model of, I haven't a clue, but it was caught on video and there are stills, so you can see for yourself, positively screamed into the air and did a series of laps with a speed and sound that would not disgrace a team racer; not very scale like to look at or listen to. A Focke Wulf 190 set everything right with an almost effortless performance that just looked right. The only thing that marred this vision of beauty, was the inboard U/C leg tending to tuck under during taxing.

There was even some activity in the carrier circles, usually cancelled because of high winds. It was here I met up with Jan Odeyn again as he made the first flight with his prototype electric powered carrier model, only finished just prior to leaving home for Nat's. You can watch the entire flight captured on video. Li-Po batteries and an Outrunner motor produce more than enough power for the job. It will be interesting to see how it develops. Jan subsequently won the Dutch Nat's Carrier event a few weeks later after sorting out the teething problems. If you want more information, Jan's email address is: jan.odeyn@skynet.be . Jan is a mine of information, so don't be coy about contacting him.

Thanks to Paul my partner, he has the decent DV recorder, there is also video of some of the control line scale flying and other stuff; interesting or not depends on who is viewing. Somehow I managed to knock my little video camera lens onto the closeup setting, so everything I took that day was blurred and complete waste of time. So I was very glad Paul was there that day.

I even managed to catch a pulse jet flight in the speed circle, a truly heart thumping experience,all noise and fury but not much actual high speed. Unfortunately it's almost impossible to photograph speed models in flight without some very expensive photographic equipment capable of high shutter speeds coupled with fast telephoto lenses, and the safety netting is also a very effective visual barrier.

All in all it was a good if short stay experience on the Saturday, Sunday was a disappointment. I knew it would be windy from the weather forcast, quite how windy I only found out when we got there.

Sunday is the day of the Swap Meet. this attracts a huge number of people as does the trade area. I have a suspicion, that of the several thousand people on the airfield most are there to shop, and are are only remotely interested in the flying. As usual there were the overinflated asking price on some items, but this year there seemed to be slightly more interesting things amongst the flotsam and jetsam on the stalls, but I would need a lot of time and a deep purse to get serious.

As it was cold and very windy it was back to the trade area to find a few things I missed on the Saturday. After a bite to eat, it was a drive down to the CL circles again, only to find absolutely nothing going on. Then an announcement over the loud speaker system revealed that flying had been abandoned because of the high wind, which might abate at around 16:30. All that was left was the RC demonstrations flights, which credit where due, they managed well considering the conditions. I would have liked to have seen the jets fly but we appeared to have missed those.

So for yet another year Barkson had kept is reputation for always being windy for the Nat's. Not many pictures but I hope the videos make up for it.

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Control Line
fw190
Info
bipe
Info
scale

bipe
Info
lowwing
Info
bipeflight

bipeflight

bipeflight

bipeflight

fw190

tr
Info
tr
Info
stunt carrier
Jan Odeyn's Electric Carrrier Prototype.
elec elec elec carrier
elechandle Plan of Jan's Model

Also see video links
Radio Control Demo's
jet1 rc1 rc3 rc3
cam Vid Links cam
As always there is a loss of quality because of the inevitable compomise when trying to reduce files to a sensible size for internet use, and not swallow up all the storage space I have available on the server.
320x240

C/L scale 1 (4.2MB .wmv)
C/L scale 2 (4.6MB .wmv)
C/L carrier (4.6MB .wmv)
C /L prototype electric carrier (4.7MB .wmv)
C /L teamrace (3.6MB .wmv)
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