Training Etiquette

If you are going to attend for training then the following points should be noted to help you and the trainers maximise the training time available:

Ensure you are familiar with the Club Safety Rules

Ensure the fences surrounding the airstrip have been lowered and the frequency board has been placed in the pits if 35MHz equipment is to be used.

If you have an aircraft with an IC engine ensure you have a tail restraint and that your model is placed in it

Ensure that you have assembled your plane on arrival (unless you need it to be checked over by a trainer if it just been built / modified)

Carry out all necessary safety checks (security of flight surface hinges, engine mounting, propeller, range check etc)

If you are using 35MHz then ensure you have placed a peg on the board to secure your channel – DON’T turn on your radio until you have done so.

Ensure you have charged your transmitter and receiver and the correct model is selected on the transmitter if you have one capable of having a number of models programmed

Fuel your plane or insert the battery (don’t make the final connection until you are about to fly)

When starting your model observe the safety precautions (Plane secured, no loose clothing able to get caught in propeller, no-one in the vicinity (particularly in the plane of the propeller), transmitter turned on then the receiver)

Remember the BMFA acronym

S…..Switch on

M…Model selected is correct / Meter in the Green

A… Aerial secure / extended

R… Rate switches all in correct positions

T… Transmitter voltage good and Trims all in correct position

Also bear in mind the BMFA guidance:

When you arrive at a flying field and before you start flying, we recommend that you take a few moments to consider the surroundings and the flights you will be making.

Think S.W.E.E.T.S.

S – Sun

W – Wind

E – Eventualities

E – Emergencies (inc. failsafes)

T – Transmitter Control

S – Site Rules

Sun – Where is the sun in relation to where you will be flying? Will it affect your flight patterns? What actions will you take if you accidentally fly ‘through’ the sun? Should you be wearing sunglasses? Remember that low sun in winter can be a particular problem.

Wind – Consider the wind strength and direction. How will this affect your flights? Will you have to modify your normal take-off and, especially, your landing patterns? From your local knowledge, will there be any turbulence with ‘this’ wind direction and strength? And how bad might it be?

Eventualities – What will you do if you hear or see a full size aircraft or helicopter flying at low level near the field? What if the landing area is suddenly obstructed when you are on finals to land? What will you do if a nearby footpath or bridle path suddenly has walkers or horses on it?

Emergencies – You may have an engine cut at any part of a flight so consider where your deadstick landings might be safely made and which ground areas you should definitely avoid. How will you warn other field users if you have an emergency?

Transmitter Control – Is the site pegboard in operation? If not, why not? Where has the pegboard been placed? Are you familiar with the system and understand how it works?

Site Rules – Are there any specific site rules you should be aware of? Most importantly, where are the no-fly zones or dead airspace areas on the site?

The answers to most of these questions are contained within these Safety Codes and your local Club rules but you will be making the final decisions as to whether flights can be made safely. If conditions are poor or a site is unsuitable remember that a decision not to fly can be both valid and sensible.

Ensure that you have read the BMFA handbook. Part of the test for the ‘A’ and ‘B’ certificate is to be able to answer questions asked by the examiner based on this handbook. There are no specific questions that are asked, the examiner can choose to ask about anything in the handbook and on Club Safety Rules. The BMFA have an on-line Achievement Scheme Practice Questions test to help you prepare for this or just to help you ‘brush up’ .