Knights of the Round Circle instructors taught young air show visitors how to fly electric-powered
CL models. The man on the left is controlling the throttle with an RC transmitter!
While building her new
glider, this girl asked
why there was a couch
in the EAA hangar. See
the text for the answer.
He’s in stitches, but it’s no joke
Byron Savage has been flying for 40 years and is a thoughtful man. When he had an unfortunate
moment with his big electric RC Cub,
Byron decided that sharing his story
might save some other pilot from big
trouble. He wrote:
“I was fine-tuning the trims on a
1/4-scale electric airplane sitting on my
table. The transmitter fell over and the
throttle went wide open. At that point,
I grabbed a wing and it spun around and
hit my arm.”
The propeller blade made a deep cut
in Byron’s forearm, leaving a serious
wound with tendon and muscle damage.
Prompt medical treatment led to a full
recovery, but Byron decided to take
photos of the aftermath. I’m sure he
had only the best intentions, but what
a pickle he put me in. Should I publish
graphic pictures like that or not?
First was a snapshot of his arm, after
repairs. A row of stitches on anyone
looks awful, and this was no exception.
Well, we’ve all seen that kind of thing.
No need to print it here.
Then the second photo popped up.
This one brought out deep feelings
in me. Here was Byron’s big beautiful
model airplane, looking jaunty in a blue
and white paint scheme. The airplane
is on a busy workbench, with typical
fun stuff all around. There were tools,
humorous wall hangings, and all the
accoutrements of model making.
And then I noticed that the wing of
the aircraft had blood splatters on it.
Wow! Talk about a scary image! Sorry,
that picture won’t get printed here, but
we all get the point.
Our hobby is about enjoying ourselves
and relaxing, yet in the joy of building
and flying models, there are hazards
lurking. Our attentive care is needed to
avoid trouble. If Byron can get caught
after 40 years, then that momentary
lapse of attention could happen to
Runaway Throttle Solution
My friend, Bud Matthews, recently
showed me a similar, but less severe,
injury. It was caused by another bumped
throttle lever on an electric model—an
all-too-common occurrence. Since that
day, Bud has come up with a plan to
avoid further trouble. He puts a sturdy
rubber band on the transmitter and
loops it over the throttle lever to hold it
down while he gets
ready to fly.
Many pilots have
thought of this
they all deserve
credit for clever
thinking. It’s a fine
idea and works
well. It is not quite
as dependable as
feature in the radio
itself, but not everyone has a fancy new
rig with that option. Transmitters get
bumped and sometimes knocked off of
tables. Please use one method or another
to protect yourself from this situation.
Education at an Air Show
I love air shows. The smaller ones are
my favorites because the mood is so
friendly, and also because model aircraft
83 Model Aviation JANUARY 2016 www.ModelAviation.com
SAFETY COMES FIRST