Kirk's 2002 R/C Season

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[Combat Planes] [Studley] [Manassas] [AGS] [Zaverton] [LCAA] [Sudley Springs] [NVRC] [Nats 2002] [Banshee Reeks] [NE Nats] [FSA Contest]

Kirk has gotten into R/C combat flying this year. For "Open B" combat, he started out with two Predators. They have about a 48" wingspan and run on .25 size engines.

In July, Kirk added two Skull Bandits to his fleet of Open B airplanes. The red tail is using a .28 engine. The yellow tail has a .25 size and Kirk finished building it at Nats (the white tag on the wing tip is the Nats safety inspection sticker). The Bandits have a longer wingspan of about 60" and a unique plastic fuselage. The grass at the field is brown because of the drought this summer.

At Nats, Kirk bought two more Skull Bandits. In late August, all his A and B class airplanes were taken apart and rebuilt. Here are the 4 Bandits (purple wings) and 3 Battle Floyds (red wings), all ready for test flying prior to the next contest.

A friend launches a Battle Floyd for a test flight. Kirk making some adjustments to a Floyd. A Skull Bandit, just as it is landing.

For "Open A" he started with one Battle Floyd, which uses a .15 engine. It has about a 46" wingspan.

He has since built two more Battle Floyds with modified fuselages. The above two photos shows his first, stock-built Floyd.

Here are some pictures of the Free State Aeromodelers field and of Kirk with some of his airplanes.
Looking out over the field. Looking to the right. The areas where the pilots stand while flying. The set up areas with benches, and the gravel parking lot behind. Kirk with his Battle Floyd. Kirk with his 3 combat planes.

Studley, VA

On 10/26/02 Kirk competed in Open A and Open B hosted by the Hanover RC Club in Studley, a bit north of Richmond, VA. Although the morning started out chilly and damp with too much fog to fly, it dried out nicely and the day ended sunny and warm. Kirk got off to a good start, but a few mishaps happened along the way. He ended the day with first place in A and fourth in B. He won an airplane kit for a Spitfire.

Photo 1 is Kirk's A class Battle Floyd coming in for a landing at the end of the first round. The round was ended early because Kirk's airplane was the only one left flying. Photo 2 is the rest of the A class pilots from the first round going out into the bean field to retrieve their planes.
Photo 1. Photo 2.
Photo 3 is Kirk (on the right) flying in A class while his judge watches. Kirk's plane is the red one on the right with lots of streamer. Photo 4 is a B class furball. Kirk's Skull Bandit is the right-most airplane.
Photo 3. Photo 4.
Photo 5 is Chris (on the left) and Kirk going out to search for their A class planes after they had a mid-air collison. Photo 6 shows Kirk preparing his back-up Floyd for the next round. If you look carefully on the field to Kirk's right, you'll see a bit of red sticking up out of the beans. That is Kirk's plane from the mid-air, marking the area of the crash. He didn't find the engine during the initial search. Fortunately, the engine was recovered at the end of the day.
Photo 5. Photo 6.
Photo 7 shows Kirk's Bandit (on the right) fleeing the scene of the accident. He had a mid-air with Jack's airplane. Kirk's plane survived just fine. Jack wasn't so lucky. From the left, there is a third pilot's airplane, then the bent and broken fuselage of Jack's plane (the tail is the wide section towards the top and right), then Jack's wing, then floating streamer, then Kirk's plane. Photo 8 is Kirk and Jack with Jack's fuselage.
Photo 7. Photo 8.

Sudley Shootout II - Manassas, VA

10/6/02 was a lovely, early fall day for the second contest at Sudley Springs, near Manassas, VA. There were 4 rounds of A class and 4 rounds of B class flown. Kirk did well, taking second place in A and third in B. At lunch, everyone had cake to celebrate Chris' birthday.

Kirk's Battle Floyd with lots of streamers. Kirk's red A class size Floyd, with lots of streamers. Kirk lauching his B class Skull Bandit.  Earl starting his newly modified Predator. Kirk's plane is the purple one on the left. The top left one is Kirk's Bandit. Kirk with his Bandit after a mid-air with Chris' plane.  Both planes flew out of the crash and flew the rest of the round.

Endicott, NY

As a side trip while visiting with Melissa's family, we drove to the AGS field near Endicott, NY on 9/28/02, where they were hosting Open B and scale combat. The morning was gray as the remnants of a storm front moved out. It was sunny by the end of the day, but the front moving through meant strong winds all day. Kirk had some bad luck in the early rounds and unfortunately wasn't able to make up for it in the later rounds.

Dan launching his scale airplane.  He flew well in his second contest and won an Open B airplane kit. Kirk launching his Skull Bandit.  The streamer has just started unrolling.  The green spot is a quick field repair made with some colored tape. Kirk's airplane is the purple one, second from the top. Kirk's plane is the bottom, left one with someone else's streamer on his wing. All the pilots at the end of the day.

Zaverton, PA

We drove to the Endless Mountains RC club's Open B and scale combat contest, held on 9/14/02. Their field is at Zaverton Airport, which is a small private airport with a grass runway. All the scale rounds were flown and then all the Open B rounds. Kirk had a mid-air with Earl's Predator in the third round of four. Kirk had one excellent round, scoring more than 500 points. Although his other three rounds were more average, he still took first place for the day. Earl and Tony tied for second place.

The scale pilots, just before the call to start their engines. Dan launching his JK Aerotech P47.  This was his first time flying combat. Dan's P47 and Earl's Bearcat collide. Earl's blue Bearcat and Dan's silver P47 after the mid-air. Kirk and a judge retrieving his Bandit after a mid-air. Kirk's Skull Bandit (and parts) after the mid-air. Kirk (top right airplane) flying in a round.

Banshee Reeks II

Kirk had a good day at the Open A contest held by LCAA on 9/7/02. He tied for first place with Earl, each having 1520 points total from four rounds of combat. Kirk and Earl flew against each other in a tie-breaker round, which doesn't count towards the total points. Earl struck first, getting Kirk's streamer. Kirk followed Earl down to the deck and got a cut. Unfortunately Kirk later flew a bit too low and landed in the tall grass, leaving Earl as the winner of the round. It was a lovely day with some fun rounds, and Kirk also set a new personal second highest score for one round.

Kirk's red Floyd, with his streamer and those of two other guys. Kirk launching his airplane. Kirk and Earl competing in the tie-breaker round. Kirk and Earl's airplanes during the tie-breaker round.  Kirk's is the red one.

Sudley Shootout I - Manassas, VA

The Prince William County RC club hosted a contest on 8/24/02 with Open A and Open B combat. It was an overcast day with rain in the morning before the contest. The Sudley Springs, VA field was near Manassas, and we drove through a part of the battlefield to get there. Kirk had a great day in Open A, mostly flying one of his new, modified Battle Floyds. He took first place in A class and scored a new personal best in one round with seven "cuts" of other pilots' streamers. Unfortunately, he struggled early on in B class with some bad luck and fussy airplanes. Then part way through the afternoon, thunderstorms rolled in and the rest of the Open B contest was cancelled. Kirk was fortunate that none of his mid-airs resulted in severe damage. One unlucky pilot had a plane end up stuck in the top of the trees that border the field, about 90 feet up where no one was able to reach it.

Kirk flying combat.  He's the left-most.  The guy to his right is his judge for the round. Kirk's Floyd is the red plane flying downward with the cut on the wing. Kirk's Floyd is the red plane in the center.  He has his original streamer in the center and opponents' streamers on each wing. Kirk, with airplane and streamers, after a very good round. During his 7 cut round.  Kirk's plane is the red one with all the streamers on it.


NVRC held an Open B contest on 7/20/02. Kirk's day was mixed. He was plagued with mid-airs and equipment troubles the entire day. It was a cloudy, hazy day, making for a gray sky. Some of the other pilots generously helped Kirk get his plane repaired and fly-able for the last round of the day. That last round was a good one though -- it was Kirk's first 400+ point round. That round helped push up his scores for the day into first place, for his first ever first place finish. Melissa judged for the first time, helping out for three rounds.

The Bandit after the 400+ point round, with three cut streamers on one wing and his full length original streamer. Kirk with his Skull Bandit after the last round. Kirk's plane is the red one near the left.  He has a cut streamer on his wing. Kirk's plane is the red one near the left.  He has a cut streamer on his wing.

2002 Nationals

Kirk attended his first Nats in Muncie, IN this year. Ten rounds each of Scale and Open B combat were held July 12-14, 2002. He finished 12th out of 41 pilots in Open B. This was his first competition flying his new Skull Bandits. He made it through nine rounds with the first Bandit, making relatively minor repairs to it as needed after some of the rounds. For the tenth round, he flew the back-up Bandit, which he finished building while at Nats.

The Open B pilots with their airplanes.  Kirk is on the left with his red Skull Bandit. The scale pilots with their airplanes. The line of shade canopies.  Ours is the solid blue top near the center of the picture. The line of pilots and judges during a round. Kirk's Bandit is the red plane at the bottom right. Kirk's red airplane is at the top left. Ten Open B planes in a furball. Kirk checking out his plane after a crash landing.  The two short red lines on the white are strips of tape used to repair damage from propeller cuts from a prior round of combat. Kirk starting the engine and preparing to launch his primary Skull Bandit. Kirk launching his plane.  Note the green streamer that hasn't fully unrolled yet. Kirk launching his back-up Skull Bandit. Kirk's Bandit after a mid-air.  The horizontal tail feather was replaced after an earlier crash to the white one seen here.  He came down with his streamer and someone else's too. The airplane just left of center with red vertical stripes on the wings has just had a mid-air and the tail is falling off the plane. Billy with his plane after it crashed.  On the wing, you can see all the bits of streamer from cuts he got. An airplane that didn't make it back home.

Banshee Reeks I

Kirk competed at the Battle of Banshee Reeks in Loudon County, VA on 6/15/02. It wasn't his best day, although he enjoyed flying as always. His Battle Floyd ("A class") was in 3 mid-airs in 6 rounds of combat. Fortunately, he was able to get it flying again after the first two collisions. The third time was in the final round of combat, so the plane stayed grounded. It now needs a fair bit of work to get it back into shape.

Kirk fixing his plane the first time. Kirk fixing his plane the first time. After the first repair.  Note the newly shortened ailerons. After the first repair.  Note the newly shortened ailerons. After the third and final mid-air. A plane that crashed after a streamer got tangled in its engine. Kirk's streamer cut into Earl's wing and stuck there during one of the mid-airs. Kirk landing his airplane.

NE Nats

Kirk competed at the Northeast Nationals on 6/8/02 in Salem, CT. He came in 3rd in "Open C" class and won a trophy. There was also a scale combat contest, but Kirk doesn't have a scale combat plane yet (maybe next season). To fly in "Open C" Kirk just put a bigger engine on his red Predator.

These dot airplanes hover and flutter about slowly, but the faster planes had trouble cutting the dot's streamers. Slam's open class plane.  He came in 1st in open C and scale. Our new shade canopy. Looking at the large version, you can see two planes with cut streamers on their wings. Open C furball.  Note the dot plane at the bottom left. Pilots flying combat. Planes waiting along the flight line.  Kirk's is the left-most one. Some scale pilots use catapults to launch their airplanes. Some of the scale planes at the contest. Some of the scale planes at the contest.

Frenzy at Free State I

Kirk's first combat contest was Frenzy at Free State on 5/19/02. One of the goals is to cut someone else's streamer off while preventing others from cutting yours. The last three photos are all from the same round. A round lasts about five minutes.

Some of the crowd.  The judges' table.  A mid-air collision punched a hole in the wing and tore the covering off one of Earl's Predators.  Ouch!  A crash from a pre-combat practice flight.  Other combat planes at the contest.  Other combat planes at the contest.  Other combat planes at the contest.  Other combat planes at the contest.  Other combat planes at the contest.  Some of Earl's airplanes.  Roger's Battle Floyd.  Three planes with their black streamers attached.  Three planes with their black streamers attached.  Three planes with their black streamers attached.