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Los Banos 2018 Aerotow & Slope Event Report

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  • Los Banos 2018 Aerotow & Slope Event Report

    Last weekend was our 25th Anniversary event and the weather gods did not disappoint. Lynsel Miller (CD), with myself, Brian Chan and others helping have been doing this event for so many years its almost on autopilot. The State Parks crew did a nice job of mowing the parking and 3 runway areas, and provided daily trash and toilet cleaning service - quite a good deal for $25 plus $10/day/car ($20 for camping on site). We had temps in the 80's and good slope lift on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday for the early arrivals. As usual on Saturday and Sunday the wind was only enough for small floaters, but that's why we aerotow!

    We had two new aerotow pilots, one with an H-model Arcus (had been slope-flown the week before) and one a first-time Scale Sailplane flyer with (my former) Reichard Laminar (previous TD glider experience and scale WWI / WWII pilot) and they both had flawless experiences with plenty of instruction and coaching before during and after their flights. It is very rewarding to see new faces with Scale Sailplanes.

    We had 24 registered pilots and several guests, our usual Pilot's Choice awards for Best Modern, Best Vintage and Best of Show. I won (first time!) for Best Vintage with my 1:3 Rosenthal ASK-13, Philippe Stampf won the other two awards with his Paritech 1:2.5 DG-1000 with SLS.

    Towing duties were ably handled by Scott Marnoch (Bidule 170), Ken Kaye (Pegasus) and Steve Hurd (Pegasus).

    Pilot's enjoyed a free raffle including a Horizon Parkzone Ka-8, TMRC Cherokee kit, Los Banos 2018 mugs, and lots of sailplane hardware. A paid raffle for more hardware, mugs and Los Banos event t-shirts followed. A big thank you to our Sponsors Hobby Club ( and OH Marketing LLC (aka Rosenthal Flugmodelle USA).

    Thermal conditions were generally very good to hat-sucking, something Los Banos is well-known for with it's thousands of acres of mixed-use farmland surrounding the reservoir, and the "warm California" Central Valley sun - one hour plus flights are not uncommon.

    If you are ever out in the San Francisco Bay Area the 3rd weekend of April, let us know in advance and we'll find something for you to fly.

    Bruce DeVisser
    Award plaques provided by Bob Holman Plans Service ( Bruce DeVisser and 1:3 Rosenthal ASK-13. Philippe Stampf and 1:3 Rosenthal ASW-15B.

  • #2
    Bucket list! Thanks, Bruce, for sharing the report and photos. I may steal a few for our Facebook page.
    Team PowerBox Systems Americas ............You can't buy happiness. But, you can buy a sailplane and that's pretty darn close.


    • #3
      At age 15 as a newcomer to R/C, my mentor was R. R. (Dick) Miller. He encouraged me to build a Heathkit radio and later an Ace Silver Seven. Along the way we did aerotowing (1970-76). Dick moved to California and settled in Hollister. He sent me video of the "Giant Scale Areotowing" scene he became involved with and in that video was a first timer getting towed by the name of Brian Chan. Also in the video was the flying site at Los Banos. His enthusiasm for giant scale aerotowing was passed on to me and ultimately brought me to where I am today.

      I believe these pictures were taken at Los Banos around the mid 1990's. Dick liked to tow with his scale biplanes.

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      A Site for Soar Eyes


      • #4
        Beauty of an ASK 13! Thanks for the pictures.


        • ARUP
          ARUP commented
          Editing a comment
          +1 Yes...thanks for posting!