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Build your fantasy flying field.

FlyingMonkey

Stuck in Sunny FL
Staff member
Admin
#1
In the recent "Viewer Response/Mid-Air Package Exchange" episode at about 34:55 David and Josh start talking about the need for a new facility to house the ever expanding Flite Test enterprises.

During the conversation, they mention there will be a flying field at the location, where people can come and fly with the crew. WHAT!?!?!? Now I'll have to save some money for a flight to Ohio!

Can you say Flite Test Flight Festival?

This got me to thinking, if you were to build your own flying field, what amenities would you want on it?

One of my favorite places in the world is Hodges Hobbies in Americus GA (home of SEFF, see the SEFF episodes that Flite Test produced to get a better feel for what I'm talking about).


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P6eMzaenHvM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5djsc4waQXQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0yvRtDyligQ

and my favorite for some reason...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7EScXFmoxw

This place has a hobby shop right at the field, two open air pole barns, and an enclosed metal warehouse like building (where the tractors for the farm are supposed to go but the planes end up in there instead.) There's several RV power and water pods for campers to hook up to. Recently they added a lake for float flying, and new restrooms and showers are being installed now.

I haven't been there, but the Triple Tree Aerodrome (where Joe Nall is held.) is supposed to be a very nice RC flying complex.

What would you add to your field? I'd like a restaurant on site. It wouldn't have to be much, a hotdog and hamburger stand. Something to draw folks in, where they could eat on the patio, and watch the planes flying over head, catch the bug and go ask the pilots how to get involved in the hobby.
 

CrashRecovery

I'm a care bear...Really?
Mentor
#3
Flight recorders on the field that you can log in and down load your flight, and the computers have video editing software so you can do the work there. Food......... burgers, dogs and drinks is fine with me.
 
#5
A battery charging area would be great. Although you must have a charging bag of your own to use the facility. The charging area would be solor powered as to get free energy. Or a wind driven charging area as it seems as if there is allways a windy day.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#7
A bar. I'd definitely include a bar.
LMAO!!! I almost laughed my self out of my chair when I read that. That's teach for you lol.

I think a nice road access, definitely a pond because I love float flying, grass field with paved runway for jets etc. with two strips for days when the wind switches directions, a nicely trimmed grass area for helicopters, maybe a separate concrete heli pad, a little garage to keep/maintain the riding mower, in ground sprinkler system, plenty of parking, on site power with outlets on poles all along the pit area and tie down rings already in the ground so people can anchor their pop up tents. RV sized parking for people that come out of town, LHS on site would be cool, but that would put you too close to other populated areas, so maybe just a building that a LHS can use on event days, maybe a covered area like a pole barn that can be used for seminars and shows etc. A local club that would staff a tech support area every once in a while and be there just to answer questions and help keep the noobs in the air, you know help them make repairs and troubleshoot problems, maybe take a 1 or 2 hour shift during an event so everyone takes a turn yet still gets to fly a lot. Some aluminum bleacher type stands so people don't always have to pack chairs or stand to watch the pros hang it all out. A food vendor would be awesome, but impractical except at big events. Maybe a bulletin board/swap meet/sale items board, and have a flyer for a great burger joint nearby that delivers and has a discount for club members.
 

FlyingMonkey

Stuck in Sunny FL
Staff member
Admin
#8
LHS on site would be cool, but that would put you too close to other populated areas, so maybe just a building that a LHS can use on event days,

Hodges is miles from town in the middle of farm fields and does as well as the shops "downtown."

The same people who will travel to get to a field in an unpopulated area, are the same people who shop at hobby shops. So, why would the shop be anymore out of the way than the field for these people? Plus you get the benefit of impulse buyers. Either because they just showed up, were curious and then were struck with the buying bug while there, or because of a crash and the need to replace that plane, right then.

I have a thread in mind on this topic, I'll start it one of these days.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#9
I suppose that would work in a really popular area, I'm thinking of the crowds that show up in my state, much smaller lol. I would love to see a hobby shop on site and that makes sense about having to drive anyway. Plus if there's a sweet flying field at the hobby shop, that would bring in soooo much business.
 

CrashRecovery

I'm a care bear...Really?
Mentor
#11
You could even have a demo fleet for people to buddy box on when they are thinking about getting into the hobby.
That would be really cool. The instructors could tell you what to set your radio to and then you fly away. But even a complete set of aircraft from flite test would be cool. Just add your receiver and fly away
 

FlyingMonkey

Stuck in Sunny FL
Staff member
Admin
#12
You could even have a demo fleet for people to buddy box on when they are thinking about getting into the hobby.
I thought about that, it's going into my hobby shop thread... but the short of it is the idea of having a school at the hobby shop.

You start the students on a sim using a wide screen tv as the monitor, or even a projector against a wall.

Then you take them out and buddy box them on a plane you sell, that is good to learn on.Once the student is ready to solo, they'll likely want to buy the same plane they learned on, so you get that sale, plus the sales for parts when he breaks them.
 

Ak Flyer

Fly the wings off
Mentor
#13
Exactly, I like the projector idea. It would be easier for other people to watch and learn as well. Plus when it's rainy or windy you could have contests indoors on the simulator.