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    • Nick Jackson

      BARCS AGM 2018

      By Nick Jackson, in BARCS,

      BARCS 2018 Annual General Meeting will be held at 6pm 27 May, Buckminster Lodge, Sewstern, Grantham. NG33 5RW
      Venue is the BMFA National Centre and timing is the Sunday evening of Radioglide. The AGM will be followed at 7pm by a glider swap meet. (Swap Meet details tba).
      Nominations for officers or member of the Committee should be sent to me by 28 March.
      (I need to know the proposer and seconder and to have the agreement of the nominee. Please PM me - ‘Nick Jackson’ - or email jackson272894@yahoo.com with any nominations or queries.)
      Proposals for the AGM should be sent to me by 27 April
      (I need to know the proposer and seconder. In some cases (as indicated in the Constitution) more than one seconder is required. Please PM me - ‘Nick Jackson’ - or email jackson272894@yahoo.com with any proposals or queries.)
      Please do attend the AGM if at all possible and have your say there. Please also consider joining the Committee, which is keen to have additional members.
      Nick Jackson, BARCS Hon. Sec.

    • Tribute to Chris Moynihan

      By Sydney Lenssen, in BARCS,

      CHRIS MOYNIHAN - November 1945-February 2018
      Recently chairman of both BMFA and BARCS
      Always looking for lift: Chris Moynihan on the visit of the Barcs committee to Buckminster Lodge, the BMFA’s National Flying Centre, in preparation for RADIOGLIDE 2017. The event was the first major competition to be held at the Centre.
      From the left, Gary Binnie, Barcs Chairman; Chris, already ill although few knew it at the time; Manny Williamson, BMFA’s key leader in NFC’s development and side view of Peter Allen, now Barcs treasurer.

      Farewell to the best friend of all British aeromodellers
      The death this week of Chris Moynihan is very sad. He will be sorely missed. Graham James who has known Chris, flown in the same club together and worked together for BARCS over many years, has written an worthy tribute. I would like to add a few words. He was a good friend and such a hero.
      A few years ago, the UK F3J world was in a turmoil because of arguments over the lack of rules for winches. Some pilots had more powerful winches than others - seen as an unfair advantage. All winches and batteries must be certified as in F3B contests said some pilots, others reckoned the extra burden of testing would deter recruits with pilot numbers already dropping. A majority of the existing league competitors were not bothered one way or other.
      A ruling had to be made by SFTC, the silent flight technical committee of BMFA, Britain’s body responsible for FAI soaring affairs. Although I was not on this committee I was invited to attend the meeting to help resolve the impasse which had arisen. Only a few SFTC members flew F3J, but they were all eager to make their ruling.
      After a couple of hours of stalemate, Chris said that he would review what had been argued, and picked his way carefully and accurately through all the arguments. He patiently demonstrated that we were not at loggerheads but indeed very close to agreeing a solution. He was masterly at resolving a vexatious issue. For me it was a lesson and technique that I had not been conscious of before. He would certainly help the current Brexit shambles.
      At BARCS committee, Chris kept us up to date with relevant BMFA developments, especially the new National Flying Centre. He always seemed to have simple solutions which would help progress matters to everyone’s advantage. He was always able to name people who had expertise and could help. He seemed to know every flying site across the country.
      I shall miss his expertise, humour, common sense and intellect. Aeromodellers in this country are the poorer without him.
      Sydney Lenssen, February 2018

    • Chris Moynihan

      By grj, in BARCS,

      It is with great sadness that we report the passing, on Tuesday 6th February, of the former BARCS President and BMFA Chairman Chris Moynihan at the age of 72, following a long battle with cancer.
      I stood alongside Chris for many years in his roles on the BARCS Committee as Secretary, Chairman and President of the organisation. He was a man of great integrity, drive and ambition, always pushing to improve the lot of aeromodelling in the UK. He fought hard to form close alliance between BARCS and the BMFA sacrificing his position as BARCS Chairman to re-election on a platform of affiliating BARCS to the BMFA. In more recent times he has been a strong advocate for the BMFA  National Flying Centre, bringing his ambition to fruition, as the Chairman of BMFA, with the opening of Buckminster Lodge last year. He also bought his negotiation skills to the table in discussions with aviation bodies including the CAA.

      Many will remember competing against Chris in Open Competition, where his dogged determination to win would be ably demonstrated. In particular he was well remembered in fly off situations, on occasion campaigning what might best be described as ‘behind the edge’ technology, in large floaty ‘free flight’ style models and beating more sophisticated designs. I remember him talking at a Thames Valley Silent Flyers meeting about tips on lift detection and spoke somewhat tongue in cheek, of allowing his neck hair to grow, so that he might feel the change in wind direction that indicted lift in the flat calm of a late afternoon fly off. He was winner of many competitions at national level particularly in Open and 100s classes, taking Midland League, Radioglide and Victor Ludorum awards on several occasions and was awarded a Fellow of BARCS in honour of his services to the organisation.
      Although primarily known for his thermal soaring prowess, his love of aviation ran deep in both modelling and full size. He was a member at the Shuttleworth Museum often attending their summer evening flying displays. As BMFA Chairman he attended many flying events and was enthusiastic about all aspects of the hobby, particularly fascinated by the skills of the free flight scale modeller and the ingenuity of the ‘heavy lift’ student challenge. He enjoyed all forms of slope soaring, organising trips to North Wales for TVSF where he would fly everything from Phase 5, 60” slope racers and quarter scale gliders through to a pioneering PSS SE5a. He also enjoyed Sunday flying of electric aerobatic and oldtimer models at his local club field, followed by some lively debate with the pub crowd on a Sunday lunchtime
      Chris was a Manchester lad who had great affection for the Red side of his home town. Having worked for many years in human resources, Chris’s career saw him move around the globe and in particular South America. A geography graduate, Chris had rekindled his interests in recent years and studied Geology, participating in field trips on coastal walks and welsh mountain scrambles to indulge his passion.
      Chris is survived by his wife Anne-Marie, two Children Paul and Amy plus grandchildren.
      His funeral will take place on Monday 19th February at St Joseph's Church Gerrands Cross SL9 8RY, followed by a service at Chilterns Crematorium, Amersham and a reception to follow, details will be confirmed at a later date. If you would like more information on this, please contact me directly grjinflight@yahoo.com
      Rest in peace Chris. Your friends will remember you.
      Graham James

    • Entry is now open for Interglide 2018. The event will take place over the weekend 23rd - 24th June at the same location as last year. Full details together with online and postal entry is available on the Interglide website. Entry has been open two days and already there are 9 pilots from France entered.  
      Report from the 2017 event can be seen here https://www.interglide.co.uk/2017-results


      By Gary B, in BARCS,

      by Sydney Lenssen, BARCS President and Gary Binnie, BARCS Chairman
      We and the BARCS executive committee wish all members, and indeed everyone who enjoys model flying and thermal soaring, a very happy Christmas, and also a very special year ahead in 2018. May all your achievements, higher scores and hopes be realised.
      Year 2017 has been a mixed year, probably for everybody. The biggest triumph by far has been the successful opening of BMFA’s National Flying Centre at Buckminster. BARCS can be very proud that it was the first group of aeromodellers to utilise the facilities on offer by organising a successful Radioglide 2017 at the end of May. 
      There is still a long way to go until BMFA realises all its ambitious plans for the NFC. Very sensibly, they are taking a careful financial route. Many members will not have even seen the site so far. Don’t hesitate. Many other members are in the band of volunteers, regularly making the Centre bigger and better. Offer to help if you can!
      One of the prime movers to establish the National Flying Centre is Chris Moynihan as chairman of the BMFA and also a member of the BARCS executive committee. Many years ago, it was Chris who tackled the difficult job of persuading BARCS to grow closer to the BMFA. He then went on to become chairman of the BMFA with his dedicated drive and skill at bringing together proponents and opponents. Very sadly, due to health problems, Chris has stepped down from both the BMFA chairman role and the BARCS committee. We shall all miss his wise counselling. 
      It was only the end of last year that our committee’s chairman Robin Sleight died. He was also Secretary of the BMFA. Gary Binnie volunteered to step in as interim chair, only to be voted in as permanent leader at the next meeting. All committee members work hard for BARCS and silent flight matters, but the chairman’s role is by far the most important. We have also had a change of treasurer and Peter Allen has taken on that role. He has been secretary for many years as well as main organiser of the F3J activities and national team member for Great Britain. To replace him and his secretarial duties, we give a heartfelt welcome to Nick Jackson.
      A change to come shortly will be the president’s position as his term of service ends. But more important is that your committee could do with one or two extra members, and we would ask everyone to consider if they would be willing and able to join the committee. You will not get any bouquets, but it is important for the future of silent flight models in the UK and continuing enjoyment of a range of competitive events. The load needs to be spread, and most important of all, we need younger members with fresh ideas and energies. Come on, take the plunge, just let us know you could be tempted.
      Another sad mark of 2017 was the end of the F3J national league and for the first time there was no GBR team at the European Championships. GBR will not be represented at the 2018 F3J World Championships in Romania. The only consolation is that F5J events are thriving and growing in popularity.
      There must be lots of pilots who now have F3J models wrapped up as spares in their store cupboards. If you would be pleased to join another BARCS F3J competition for fun, please let us know and we’ll try to set it up.
      All the very best - and plenty of thermals - for 2018!
      Sydney Lenssen, BARCS President
      I would like to thank Sydney for his kind words in this message and very wise words given to me and the committee at other times. I would also like to thank all the competition directors, without them nothing would happen.
      The National Flying Centre is a fantastic resource which is improving all the time as facilities are added. Being able to book the venue in advance has removed the difficulties we sometimes encountered in the past over field availability. Radioglide (including the BARCS AGM) will be held at Buckminster again and I am sure that the Silent Flight Nationals will also be held there in August as they were this year. 
      Hamilton Farm airstrip in Kent is another fine location, the 2017 Interglide Eurotour competition switched to F5J and saw many visitors from the continent and flyers from the South-East taking part, we are planning to hold the event there again in 2018, all being well.    
      On the subject of stored F3J models they can also be used for BARCS Open class competitions, there was not quite enough of us to have a viable competition at Radioglide this year, fingers crossed for 2018.  100S continues with a small band of dedicated pilots.
      All the best for 2018 whether you will be standing on a cliff in a howling gale or sharing a farmer’s field with 200 sheep as I do! Cheers and Merry Christmas.
      Gary Binnie, BARCS Chairman    

    • An Appreciation for Dick Edmonds

      By Sydney Lenssen, in General News,

      How many RC model glider pilots tried this form of aeromodelling for the first time with a Halton Special (or Apex)? Hundreds, perhaps thousands, certainly I was one of them. For that reason I shall always be an admirer of Dick Edmonds.
      As his EMP advert spells out, this model comes completely ready-made to a very high standard, all that is required is the addition and installation of your two-function R/C unit for rudder and elevator. Ideal for someone who does not have the time for construction. That was me! And off I went with a bungee to a local field, all alone, and taught myself to fly, even caught my first thermal. Far easier than free-flight A2s. What a thrill.

      A long time ago. When the time came for contest flying, I got to know Dick along with many friends and followed the growth of Edmonds Model Products - the Algebra series of 2.5, 3Mk 11 and 4 metre soarers. Dick was always among the leaders and eager to share his experiences.
      Ten years or more later, when Open competitions had given way to F3J contests, and this class had become recognised by the FAI worldwide. To win a place in the British team you had to fly in several if not all the contests in the league, six or more events, widespread across the country, even in Europe. 
      At its peak nearly 100 pilots were involved.
      Around the year 2,000, the league was organised by Team Norf & Sarf, Colin Lucas, Phil Jackson and Bob Dickenson. Colin produced a regular newsletter BMFA F3J NEWS with all the results and I contributed Uncle Sydney’s Gossip Column.
      Early in 2001, Dick also wrote an article: “I was prompted to write this after reading Uncle Sydney’s Gossip column. First I would like to say how much I enjoy Sydney’s contributions to F3J News, he certainly has the ability to sniff out interesting goings on in the soaring world.”
      There’s nothing a writer enjoys more than praise. And if that comes from the maestro Dick Edmonds, nothing gets better!
      Many thanks.
      Sydney Lenssen

    • RIP Dick Edmonds 1930-2017

      By Peter, in General News,

      My good friend and mentor Dick Edmonds died last Saturday after a long battle with Parkinsons disease.
      Dick grew up and lived all his life in the High Wycombe area where, during WW2, the furniture manufacturing skills of the region were put to good use making Mosquitoes. The airfield of RAF Halton and Booker were also close by so after the war Dick chose to do his National Service in the RAF where he was trained as a mechanic.
      He became involved in various fields of modelling but was best known for his exploits in Team Racing. I first heard Dick's name when as a teenager around 1960 and part of a young group of enthusiastic control line fliers the news came that 'bloody old' Dick Edmonds has won the B class team race World Championships. Old? He must have been about 30 at the time but when you are a teenager anyone over 20 was old.
      Dick's approach to team racing was typical of the analytical manner in which he approached model design. Most of the top pilots of the time were using the latest ETA glow engines, very powerful but  thirsty. Dick used a Frog 500 and managed to complete the whole race without a pit stop, a case of the tortoise beating the hare. I am sure that some BARCS members have more first hand knowledge than I do about Dick’s exploits at this time and it would be good to hear from them.
      Dick started his modelling business Edmonds Model Products in 1980 in partnership with his wife Maureen taking advantage of the then new technology of using veneer covered foam for wings in a glider application. His early designs included the classic Halton Specials and Apex which were also offered ready covered in film so could claim to be the first ARTFs on the market. He then took to manufacturing the very competitive Sean Bannister designed Algebra and continued to expand and develop the range throughout the 80s.
      Dick was a great innovator and used his talent to supplement his skill as a highly proficient thermal soaring pilot. I recall him experimenting with WARC breaking (back to front CROW where the flaps came upwards), canard thermal soarers and different wing sections. An interesting one was the use of a Guerney flap which he tried out on only one side of a wing in order to assess the effect. The first launch on a winch had a nasty effect on the bowels and nearly the need for a poly bag!
      As he approached retirement in the early 90s the market for foam/veneer models was declining as the early moulded models were being produced. Dick investigated the possibility of producing a mouldie himself but concluded, quite rightly, that if he paid himself a living wage and he could not compete on price with the products from eastern Europe with their very low wage rates. The lease on his High Wycombe premises was due for renewal and this co-incided with moving house to Little Marlow where there was a large hut in the garden from which he could continue to run EMP with little in the way of overheads.
      He continued to enjoy competing in thermal soaring competitions but increasing found that he could not be competitive with his home built designs against the ever improving moulded models so  decided to retire from competition flying. He continued with his life long membership of the High Wycombe club coaching beginners and flying mainly electric sport and semi scale designs. This activity continued until recently when the increasing hold of Parkinsons made this impossible.
      Dick leaves a widow, Maureen, who was not only his partner in life but also of EMP, reminding him that it was a business from which they made a living and not just an enjoyable hobby.
      The funeral is at Amersham Crematorium on Thursday 26th October at 1pm.


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