In the UK and Europe the Carrier rules have evolved in an organic sort of way – based on the AMA regulations, but with some differences. For instance, in 2013 some rule changes to encourage ducted-fan jet-outline models were introduced as an experiment.
Before all this, there were some rather obvious opportunities to exploit gaps in the rules for a savvy flier – and fliers get no savvier than Jan Odeyn! He recently sent me some details of his first Carrier meeting in the UK, some years back, for which he adapted a rather special plane for BCD. Let’s hear Jan’s story in his own words:
“This is my first carrier plane. I took it with me to the 1995 Nationals. It has a OS 40 FP and a Roberts bellcranck.I think it was the first year Andy Housden was on Nationals duty with a deck, and we found out we could participate although w’ed get no scale and paint points. As it was not made as a carrierplane we had to get pianowire from the shops and make a hook for it.
When we arrived back at the deck to have some flights I met some enthusiastic judges ( Andy Housden , Nigel Cheffers-Heard ,..) all wearing some kind of fancy dress. It was very windy and I received a medal for Saturday’s best flight ( I guess I was the only pilot flying that day…)
There was also a gap in the rulebook. When I missed the wire with the hook I just made a big loop and went back for it The next year there was another formulation in the rules to avoid this. So that was my start in Carrier flying!
AND: there’s a PS ; I also managed an inverted landing on the deck. I guess it still is the only inverted landing made in an official competition flight!
(Editor’s note: I think there’s a new version of Carrier-flying trying to get out here – fast flight, combat aerobatics, zapping an enemy balloon, slow flight and most importantly, landing in an inventive manner – what about it, chaps? (oh yes, in fancy dress too!)