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Rise if the Drones

Intelligent Perspective Produced by Forbes
Presented by lawyer and RC hobbyist Brendan Shulman

FAA Announces Drone Registration Program

Begins 12/21, free for first 30 days then $5

All unmanned aircraft over 250g included.



About 80 members and family enjoyed a a holday party and fiest on December 12 at the annual SFDRCM Christmas Party. This is our annual chance to social and meet the family of members. We thanked the membership for their help in maintaining the club, with everything from taking trash from the field, cutting weeds, moving rocks, monitoring safety practices and helping newcomers. We had the DX9 radio raffle, with the winner being...Rich Rannis! Fair and square! His hard work for the club came back to reward him. Dozens of other prized were won, from 24" TV, Android Tablet, RXR airplanes, charger and Chirstmas Stockings filled with cash!

Wishing everyone Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! Be Healthy and Fly Safe!


Los Angeles Times Editorial Calls for More Local
"Drone" Laws and "Drone Zones"

Continuing the "anti-drone" drumbeat, the Los Angeles Times editorial (12/13/2015) calls for local and federal goverment regulation to control UAV flying. The article mentions that the National Conference of State Legislatures will release a set of best practices to help guide states as they regulate drone use. Chances are very good that local governments will accept these recommendations totally as-is. We don't know what will be in these but there is little reason to hope they will be any more reasonable that what the FAA and other local governments have porposed or passed.

The article also suggests the creation of "drone zones" where radio controlled aircraft and and cannot be flow. Read the editorial here, and feel free to express your opinion.

Chicago follows Los Angeles to Pass Restrictive

"Drone" Law

Combines the worst of LA and vetoed California laws
Affects All Model Aircraft

The Chicago city Council has passed what appears to be the most restrictive "drone" law
on record of any major city. The law:

  • Prohibits flying within 5 miles of any of the city's airports
  • Prohibits flying over private property without the owners consent
  • Prohibits flying over churches
  • Prohibits flying over police stations
  • Prohibits flying over schools
  • Prohibits flying over hospitals
  • Prohibits flying for any commercial use
  • Prohibits flying over any person not involved in the operation of the aircraft
  • Prohibits flying between dusk and dawn
  • Prohibits flying out of visual line of sight
  • Prohibits flying higher than 400 feet
  • Prohibits flying in inclement weather
  • Violators may be fined from $500 to $5000 for each violation.
  • Violators may be jailed for 180 days
  • Aircraft and equipment may be seized if an official believes there is a violates of the ordinance.

These restrictions go beyond what the FAA has proposed and specifically apply to hobby and recreational users. This applies to all model aircraft. At best, the law opens the city to expensive (on both sides) legal challenges. At worst, it opens hobbyists to scrutiny, harassment, fines, jail, and general degradation of the status of the model aviation hobby.

The lesson here is that we must monitor what our local governments are proposing, and make our voice heard before it gets to the proposed legislation stage. With local government, after that stage is it too late to effect changes.

[opinions expressed are those of the editor]

SFDRCM, Rich Rannis Featured in Pasadena Star News
Drone Registration Article

Rich is quoted in a nice, fair article in the Pasadena Star News online. It addresses the FAA registration proposals that affect ALL MODEL AIRCRAFT over 250 grams. Model airplanes, helicopters, flying toys, AMA members are all swept up in the recommendation. The final form and content of the FAA proposed regulation is yet to be determined, as are penalties for failure to comply.

Click Here to Read the Article

FAA Registration Panel Ignores AMA and Hobbyists

Your AMA Number is not good enough, your airplanes will

need to display a government issued ID number. And you will have to carry

a card that shows you are registered.

The panel put together by the FAA turned in their report on sUAV registration. The term sUAV includes what are popularly referred to as "drones" as well as the more common Recommendations (that the FAA may accept, modify or ignore) reguire all unmanned aircraft over 250 grams (9 oz) to carry a legible registration number. The number will be issued by a government app. The same number can be used on all the registrants aircraft. The registrant must then carry a printed or electronic ID card. Persons under 13 may not register due to child privacy laws, so an adult must register the aircraft to be flown by someone under 13.

Under current law, failure to register an aircraft can result in penaties exceeding $25,000. There is currently

no legal provision for lesser penalties for model aircraft / sUAVs.

The 250 gram proposal purposely ignored performance and capability based exclusions, in favor of a questionable risk analysis formula. Essential it calculated the risk of death to a person from being hit on the head by an object falling from the sky from a height of 500 feet if everyone in a densly populated area were standing outside unprotected at the same time. There was no consideration of danger to passenger carrying aircraft, which purportedly was the prime objective of the registration process.


[opinions are those of the editor]


Loss of Control Incidents at the Field;
Incident Report Form Created




Ed Flaot

Lots of new Swap Shop Ads

If you haven't looked at the Swap Shop lately, check it out. Lots of new ads today - heli, EDF, gas, etc.

New Gate Installed to Curb Trespassing at Field


Photo credit: Tom Traeger

Thanks to President Rich Rannis for spearheading the effort to install a gate on the northern entrance to our field. Since Gold Line Extension work began last year, the normal Duarte Road gate has not been locked, leading to increased trespass at our field, including graffiti and car and ATV tracks and burnouts. Hopefully the gate will reduce this significantly. The design of the gate is one side for club use with one club lock, and the larger side for other utility use with the usual multiple locks. Center post is removable when both gate are unlocked. Also thanks to Gary Stevens, Tom Treager and Wayne Brown for financial donations toward the project. And this should qualify for the AMA Field Improvement Fund award program.

SFDRCM License Plate Frames

If you can't make it to the meeting
to order online - same price

Laser engraved, anodized blue, very attractive, appear to glow! $14, 2 for $25

Let use know at


SFDRCM Open House and Sale April 11 Report

Report moved to Event Reports page


12 V Power Supply from Old Computer Power Supply

Need a 12 volt power supply (or an extra one) to charge your batteries at home from a DC charger? How about recycling one from an out of service computer for next to nothing? And save ewaste from a landfill? Win Win! The few parts needed are available at Orvac Electronics 1120 Shamrock Ave Monrovia (or maybe Radio Shack).

Click THIS LINK to find out how

12V Power Suppy

New to Radio Control? Get a Quad, Heli, or Airplane for Christmas?
Don't risk a crash. Free setup and flight instruction!
Contact us at

Didn't get one but want to get started?
Contact us at

Know Before You Fly

Christmas Gifts

Newsletter On Line
We will now be delivering the newsletter only on line. See the Club Newsletter tab above to access current and past newsletters. Those requesting newsletter by mail will receive a meeting reminder postcard.

Float Fly May 2014 video by John De La Cueva, including Ed Villanueva's custom rescue boat.

Aeromodeling Pioneers: The Good Brothers Video Uploaded

When the Cindy Good and Mallory Nelson, daughter and granddaugter of RC pioneer William Good visited, they left a DVD that was a very interesting documentary of about the innovative Good brothers. I have been able to upload this to YouTube for all to enjoy. This is fascinating and inspiring look at RC history, with interviews to preserve the presence of these brothers. As with many modlers, their interest in model aviation was coupled with significant technical achievements in other areas. Let us all be inspired by their work and their enjoyment of this hobby.

Video as approx 26 minutes - thank you to YouTube for permission for the extended length upload, and to Mallory and Cindy.

Good Brothers



Meeting Time & Location Information
Wednesday at 7:30 PM
Arcadia Red Cross on Methodist Hospital campus
376 W Huntington Dr
Arcadia , CA 91007  map it
7:30 Second Wednesday each month


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