The Sanderson Field R/C Flyers 2017 Winter Build Challenge

This gallery of images tells the story of the first Sanderson Field R/C Flyers Winter Build Challenge. Many of the registered newly-constructed planes were flown for the first time. Awards and a chance for prizes were given to the entrants.

This gallery is best viewed on a PC or laptop. The default size for most images is 1000 pixels—although you can view scaled-down images on small monitors, phones, and tablets.

I hope you enjoy viewing these images as much as I enjoyed taking them.


Before the First Flight

On Saturday, June 11, 2017, I arrived at Sanderson Field, Shelton, WA, at 9:15 AM. Most event participants, including a large number of observers and event workers, were already present. It was busy around the registration table and aircraft were undergoing final assembly and safety checks. Although there were threatening clouds in the sky, there were also some sun breaks. The latest weather report was predicting a 40% chance of rain in the PM. There was little or no breeze.

New Aircraft in Review

The new aircraft were arranged near the flight line for review and photographs.

The Pilots' Meeting

The pilots' meeting began with a welcome by the Sanderson Field R/C Flyers President Jody Diaz.

Next, Safety Officer Tom Strom Jr. explained the safety rules for the event.

The Flying Begins

After the field was cleared, pilot Bob Beatty began the flying with a successful flight of his Easy Sport. Bob was the first to finish his winter build.

Tom Strom Jr. -- Patriot .40 -- Maiden Flight

Tom's first flight attempt ended when he lost a wheel on takeoff. No damage was done and he later completed his flight.

What's Wrong with this Picture?

Clark Hymas -- PNW Extra 300 40%

Rob Koenig -- Monocoupe 90A

Pilot Dick Robb for Royce Tivel -- Tiger 2 -- Maiden Flight

Dave Windom -- Extra 300 -- Maiden Flight

John Shirron -- Lear Jet by Great Planes -- Maiden Flight

John's flight ended on takeoff and he was not able to complete his maiden flight. After the event, John emailed me to say that his Lear is ready to fly again.

Mike Cole -- Four Star 120

Almost a Perfect Flight

Tom Gallagher -- Curtiss Robin

Yes—It's Blue Sky

Thom Martin -- Nieuport II -- Maiden Flight

Hand Painted by Deanna Martin

Bob Beatty for Jim Good -- Tom-E-Boy -- Maiden Flight

Mike Driver -- Pinwheel

William Judge -- Sport 40 -- Maiden Flight

After a preliminary flight for trim adjustments by pilot Tom Strom Jr., Bill took the sticks and completed the maiden flight.

Jody Diaz -- Easy Sport -- Maiden Flight

Beautiful Covering by Jody Diaz

Jack Samson -- Super Ringmaster -- Maiden Flight

Awards and Prizes

Awards and prizes were given out after the contest flying was done. Along with contest awards, I was lucky enough to win a Venture 60 kit generously donated by Bruce Tharpe. Bruce was present at the event. Other prizes were donated by Thom Martin of RC Hobbies, Olympia, WA. and Tim Hanstine of NorthWestRC, Buckley, WA. The awards included a brass commemorative "coin," designed by Cameron Diaz, and an etched-wooden plaque. Unfortunately, I was not able to photograph all of the award and prize winners.

Coin Designed by Cameron Diaz

Bruce Tharpe

Bruce Tharpe brought his Flyin' King with him to Sanderson Field. I have to admit that I had seen this model flown by others and was prepared to be unimpressed. With Bruce on the sticks, though—I changed my mind. The Flyin" King flew like the best of sports planes: aerobatics were no problem. Of course, Bruce had to admit that he has had a bit of experience flying the King. The Flyin' King was electric powered.


About the Images

The images were taken with a Canon Rebel T3i. I used Canon EF 100mm macro, EFS 60mm macro, and EFS 18-55mm lenses for the images. All images received simple processing in Photoshop and were saved as low-resolution JPEG images that were optimized for the Web. See "A New Photographic System for an Old Photographer" for more information about my (now somewhat dated) photographic system.