Several Detrimental Provisions Remain in the Senate Bill

Last week we asked you to contact your Senators requesting support of an amendment to resolve provisions in the Senate’s FAA reauthorization bill that could be detrimental to our hobby. Thanks to your efforts over 30,100 letters were sent to Congress. We thank you for your support of the hobby and making your voices heard.

The Senate version of the FAA reauthorization bill importantly preserved the Special Rule for Model Aircraft and affirmed the importance of a community-based approached to managing the model aviation community. The Senate bill also exempts our members from the 400-foot altitude limitation that was in the draft Senate bill. AMA secured this exemption for our members after engaging the leadership of the Senate Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee.

Unfortunately, however, today we learned the Senate did not incorporate some of AMA’s suggestions into the final version of the Senate bill. AMA is disappointed with several of the provisions that passed the Senate, which could undermine our community’s model aircraft activity and detract from the creativity, innovation and enjoyment of the hobby.

One of the provisions would require all UAS, including model aircraft, to meet new FAA design and production standards and impose unnecessary regulation on hobbyists who often build their own models at home. This legislation also puts new requirements on model aircraft operations within 5 miles of airports, potentially jeopardizing hundreds of existing flying sites that have operated safely and harmoniously within our communities for decades. And finally, the bill creates an unnecessary and unsubstantiated requirement for AMA members ages 13 and above to take an online FAA safety test and carry proof of passing the test when flying.

While the Senate bill is disappointing, know that we still have opportunities to shape the final legislation and we’ll need your continued help and support to achieve the best possible outcome for our hobby. The more favorable House version of the FAA reauthorization bill still needs to go to a floor vote. This bill provides a clear definition of a community-based organization (CBO) and tasks the FAA with developing a process for recognizing qualifying CBOs, both long-overdue tasks for the agency. In addition, the House bill makes clear that model aircraft can be used as a teaching tool for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), as well as aeronautics. Once the House and the Senate bills are passed, they go to a conference committee for another round of revisions and another Congressional vote. This process could take many more weeks or possibly months before being presented to the President to sign into law.

We will continue to work with our allies in Congress to protect and strengthen our long-standing, safe and educational hobby, and we may need your help again in the near future. Please continue to monitor and your email for updates and more information.


  1. These are sad times for a hobby that has shown so much progress and innovation these last few years. It is hard to believe that “scratch building” could potentially be labeled a threat to NAS. My first plane was a balsa free flight kit. Are those going to be outlawed too someday?

    Please get a stronger legal team on board before it leaves the House for the President’s signature. Tell us where to send funds to support the initiative to get our hobby back (ie – Rule 336 intent). PLEASE consider a final plea in asking congress to separate multi-rotor “drones” from traditional model aviation before everyone loses. AMA sanctioned RC clubs are NOT a threat to society. We are the reason children grow up to be pilots…and the FAA wouldn’t exist without them.

    1. Hi Lee,

      Thanks for your kind words. It was our intent to destroy your hobby using drones. Our mission is nearly complete. Soon we will be stealing your dog and digging up your lawn.

      In reality the AMA is ruled by and old guard who fears technology, change, and anyone different. As a representative of the greater drone community (out numbering the AMA now), you lost. The AMA failed to jump when they needed. The AMA is your problem and needs to go away, in no uncertain terms they have done every member a disservice. I have only been embraced by hatred, vitriol, and prejudice from a family oriented organization. My life was threatened by an AMA field manager for having a drone. I have yet to see the AMA or the membership base provide anything for the majority drone community other than collect our money and blow it on slow moving failed attempts that have actually made the situation worse.

      Don’t blame drone, blame yourself and the AMA. You get what you deserve, thanks for nothing.

      1. Lee,

        Sorry but the so called drone is no different than a gun. We someone who doesn’t respect the rules or laws doesn’t care what harm they may do to others. In the case of droves anyone can fly one or at least think they can because of the marketing of them. Not everyone can fly planes. The people that fly planes are not the issue but because of actions of drone pilots we are being penalized. Yes you are right its not the drones fought just like it’s not the gun that kills. It’s the person. We just shouldn’t be lump into to that stereo type.

        1. Butthurt over loosing the battle much. Sorry bubba – but your just gonna have to buck up. The AMA failed its members and you are quite literally a nobody when it comes to this issue. Go fly your fixed wind you little Nancy and leave the drone flying to the adults.

      2. You reap what you sow I guess. How odd that you came to destroy but weren’t greeted with open arms. Go figure. I completely doubt the story about being threatened with your life, if for no other reason than there is no such thing as a AMA field manager. Most ironic is the comment about the AMA being old guards. Almost everyone I know has complained about them letting drones into our hobby, and for being to progressive. If the drone community is so great, why haven’t they created their own version of the AMA? If the AMA is so outdated, where have all the droners been for the past 7 or 8 years. Don’t blame the AMA, blame yourselves for trying to let someone else fight your battles.

      3. Drones are the reason this whole thing started! You don’t here about model airplanes flying near airports, you hear about drones flying near airports and the people flying them getting arrested! When the AMA loses we all lose. We have drone flyers at our field and do it because it is safe and know one will get hurt doing it, without RC drones would not have been invented, so you should thank those before you for having this wonderful hobby

      4. I’ve read your comments. They fall on deaf ears I hope. Fortunately there is someone willing to stand up for the AMA, or people like yourself, which I will openly appose. I’m happy to report, having been a member of the AMA for over thirty years, president and Vice President for over ten years of a club established in 1955, with members ranging from 10 yrs. old to 88yrs old, and 90 strong individual members, who some served as Veterans of WWII, thru Vietnam, and Faulklins, who have enjoyed the fun of flying either U-control, Free Flight, and RC. All at there own local clubs fields.
        I have not heard one registered AMA member fly his model into or around a class A, class B, airport. Far from what I’ve heard from amature drone pilots risking commercial, private aircraft. These are documented FAA complaints.
        Get your facts straight sir. And if you want to pick on the AMA, bring it on…….

        1. Boy you sure sound like a welcoming individual. Real great representation of the AMA. Sorry that the AMA lost this fight – but you are just going to have to suck it up. Drone flyers are here to stay – and will soon enough dominate the AMA member base. What then? Are you personally going to go form a new club to avoid modern technology?

      5. I respectfully disagree with your entire statement.The AMA has done more to help develop flying fields, offer modelers liability insurance that would be almost impossible to obtain without them and have been relentlessness in standing up for our rights as modelers, we need them now more than ever! Unfortunately “drones” or quad-copters are what is drawing the negative attention at the moment due to the public’s propensity to group us all together and make knee jerk decisions based on sensationalized news stories even though 99.9% of quad-copter and airplane pilots have never done anything wrong. Your negative attitude is just giving the opposition more ammo to use against all of us.

        Something tells me there is more to your story than you are letting on. If you are claiming to be the face of the quad-copter community they are in big trouble as well! No offense intended.

        Now you kids stay off my lawn and wheres my dog?!

      6. Real Pilot,

        If your comments reflect the attitude of drone pilots in general, then I think we’ve found our smoking gun.

        You feel that the AMA has not embraced the drone community. From your perspective, I’m sure there is some truth to that. I can only imagine it is difficult for any organization to adapt to a new trend, especially one that has evolved as rapidly as drones and FPV racers. The fact that the AMA has chosen to include the drone community is an indication of their understanding that we all share the skies and need to be unified to protect our rights.

        While you may feel that RC pilots are prejudiced old codgers that hate anything new, I think it’s worth mentioning that “your” community is not one that grew with RC technology and never developed an appreciation for the long road we RC pilots have followed to get where we are today. Yours is the age of instant gratification and disposable devices. You have no more pride in your flying machines than you do your cell phones. Other than the monetary loss, a wrecked drone is not something to be mourned.

        Compare that with the time and dedication a builder puts into a custom scale classic. When it’s ready to maiden, everyone is rooting for the guy and holding their breath. These are the moments when our hobby really shines. Whether flying ARFs or stick-built classics, every RC pilot I’ve known has a love of flying machines, regardless of the type. Many have a direct connection to aircraft, whether through the service or as a private pilot. We are dreamers and our hearts soar with our creations. We don’t want to see that end. There’s strength in numbers and the AMA is our best voice to represent our interests.

        All that being said, I think it’s fair to say, “**it or get off the pot”. If you don’t feel the AMA is serving your needs, lobby congress on your own and see how far you get. Just be sure to let them know that your community and ours are not one and the same!

        Of course you may feel that would be a waste of time. The majority of your members will probably ignore any rulings, since most are not members of any community-based organization, and will continue to do whatever they want, which is how we got where we are now.

        Good luck and good riddens I say!


        2. I have a drone I don’t dislike them I use them for search and recovery for RC planes and boats. To me that’s all there good for it require no skill it self hovers completely boring to fly now the jets and choppers require skill time work and effort plus the gov needs to go after people not in clubs like most if you do something stupid in our club you could be banned from it so. Go after idiots leave everyone else alone I respect all type of pilots but most drones require no skill the phantom 2 returns to takeoff spot on its on when battery gets low I’m not against them there just boring

      7. Wow. I couldn’t have asked for a better response to support my position.

        Please create your own “Drone” CBO. Build up your membership and ask to be separate from “that old AMA club”. With that, I also ask that you identify yourselves as non-traditional model aviation pilots so that the AMA can move forward and protect members who have been in this hobby for decades…not a few years.

        I will continue to support a “drone”/model aircraft separation since most of us accept that the only reason we are fighting the FAA, Congress, and each other is because of too many M-R accidents and privacy concerns. There is no reason to blanket the entire hobby with rules that were clearly written to control M-R NAS abuse.

      8. Real pilot… you are not, more like real ignorant. You took it very personal as you should because say it how ever you want it, with that mentality you are the problem. Lee’s comment wasn’t directed at you and I’m sure there are a lot of people that feel the same way I know I do, but here we are. Bashing people, the AMA etc… Wait till the government gets in fully to see how much money waisted you will have. The AMA is only waisting money because of drones. I really hope that one day drones are illegal and gets separated from the AMA as it does not represent model aviation in any way. Flying a autonomous rc vehicle doesn’t make you a rc pilot or part of this sig and it is the reason why we are in this mess. You should start your own SIG so government can get at you alone without including the rest of us. Yeah, that sounds good to me… be the greates drone comunity and remove yourselves from the AMA. Start your own group and do it. Dare you. AMA member since 1982.

      9. Hi real pilot,

        I actually agree with you to a point. However I don’t blame myself. Instead I blame the AMA leadership that never took the proper initiative on the outset to distinguish autonomous drones from line of sight model airplanes and deal with them separately. Either it was true or willful ignorance is unknown, however this has lumped all of us in one category. It was stupid for that AMA rep to threaten you especially if you were operating in a safe manner at an AMA field. What I’m saying is there should have been separate rules drawn that created rules specific to each category of vehicle and they failed to do so. I pleaded with the AMA for over two years to take the proper steps and THEY failed not me or the thousands of other members who asked for the same thing.

        1. Again it’s not ama members doing stupid crap with them it’s people that may buy them to help there business and there kid says cool let me take it and video me doing something stupid. It’s the misuse outside of the ama and clubs

      10. Please explain why all other RC flight should be bundled up with multi rotors. Would you like it if fixed wing flight legislation took out multi rotor operation for no reason? While I think that multi rotors need protection, having all your eggs in one basket to go down together is kind of foolish.

      11. Hi Real Pilot.. We haven’t lost. The Senate, The FAA and you can flap your gums all you want.nothing will change… we will keep up with what we’ve been doing.

      12. Your absolutely correct. I think when this began the AMA was too busy trying to play nice with the FAA in hopes that it’s obedience would be rewarded with wording requiring mandi tory AMA membership. All they really did was make themselves unnecessary anymore.

        The real threat isn’t safety, it’s Amazon 30min delivery service. They want their airspace secure and clear, they paid quite handsomely for it I am sure.

        1. looks like once again, the Federal government is determined to make criminals out of otherwise law abiding citizens. Small government is the best government. Time to take out the trash in Washington. Follow the money – I’m sure Mark is onto something!

      13. Real Pilot:

        You are a disgrace. The AMA and it’s members have been flying responsibly for years. The advent of “drones” has opened the hobby to many folks who have no regard for piloting skill, safety or model aircraft history. Quite simply, it has become too easy, so any moron can go out and put something into the air, potentially in dangerous places. Prior to this technology, if you had no patience to develop skills, your aircraft didn’t get very far, and was not a threat. The process developed CAUTION because the pilot had both time and effort invested.

        Now, instant gratification and technology have combined to form a monster. Anyone with a few bucks and a few brain cells can put something in the air and as a result, it is a threat to EVERYONE of us who want to enjoy this hobby and fly responsibly. The drone community outnumbers the AMA you say? Maybe, but the bulk of those in that community are selfish, self centered, self entitled people with bad attitudes like yourself. Such will be successful in ruining this hobby for ALL of us if they don’t learn there is power in responsibility and organization. What has the “drone community” done to further the interest of themselves, let alone the hobby overall? We all deserve to get screwed because people like yourself could care less?

      14. Real Pilot, you’re way off base accusing AMA members being old guards afraid of change and technology. I’ve been an AMA member since 1966( guess I’m old guard ,eh?), and have enjoyed this hobby probably longer than you’ve been on this earth. For the past 40 years I’ve been involved with commercial and general aviation. The onset of drones or quads being irresponsibly operated by by careless operaters has caused this whole mess like it or not Mr. Real Pilot. I’ve never heard of anyone’s scale P-51 interfering with full size aircraft or invading privacy with cameras. Oh yeah check out the YouTube ( imagine that, an old fart like me able to access YouTube !) video some moron posted of his quad puposley flown close to,a landing 737! What can one expect when stuff like this happens?! Technology is or should not be feared, as the RC hobby has advanced leaps and bounds in the past 40 years. All I know is, that I made the call right on the mark when impredicted that the actions of a few irresponsible drone operaters will spoil a a hobby that has been enjoyed by thousands for many years . Having taken written and practical exams for my commercial , instrument, and aircraft airframe and power plant ratings, I find it ridiculous that I should take a written and carry a card proving I passed an exam to fly my 18 inch foamy airplane in my backyard! This ridiculous excessive regulation is detrimental to,the RC hobby both economically for manufacturers and socially, as it it is destroying a very wholesome exciting and enjoyable hobby. We are in deep trouble unless the language is changed in the bill. This whole mess wouldn’t exist if drone operaters were responsible for the beggiining.

      15. Your “Drone Community” IS the problem. Flying irresponsibly whether a drone or a fixed wing model is the problem. AS far as out numbering US, let see where your numbers are in the next five years. This fad will fall away and if there is anyone left who can fly legally because of YOUR inconsiderate actions we will certainly out number you again.

      16. You are partially correct, but overall very wrong. Drones are indeed the problem, and should never have been advocated, adopted, or permitted by the AMA or at AMA flying sites. We were doing fine before everyone with $100 was infesting the skies with their no-commitment, no-understanding video toys. Drones were *always* going to be heavily regulated and/or effectively banned.

        The part you are correct about is that the AMA is the problem. They encouraged, embraced, adopted first RC ARFS/RTFS, and now the despicable drones. There’s a video and hashtag on the front page, right now, indicating #dronesaregood. Even while our association with drones is about to *put an end to 120 years of model aircraft flying* .Screw the “5-mile rule”, the serious problem is this:

        One of the provisions would require all UAS, including model aircraft, to meet new FAA design and production standards and impose unnecessary regulation on hobbyists who often build their own models at home.

        That puts us in the position of effectively eliminating modeling – it would be, literally, the *end*, Then all that would exist are ARF/RTF and the drone parasites.

        I don’t have any enmity about drone fliers personally, and I am saddened that you were not treated politely. But your toys are certainly, unequivocally, the problem, and you are going to take the entire proud tradition down the toilet with you. You can go off and buy some other toy, but our hobby will be *over*.

      17. “Real Pilot?” Hardly you sound like the problem. Its not that you fly a drone or put up silly videos of you breaking altitude limits and such but its your poor attitude. The gall of your words shows what the problem is. I have seen the forums from folks in the same mold and its sad to see. The whole I will do whatever I want and no one is going to tell me otherwise ha ha. Yes the AMA is a bunch of old folks somewhat out of touch, and in my opinion that needs to change as I have voiced my opinion on this. But I am an AMA member for now and when your “big numbers” of people can pull together and have a voice in Washington then maybe you will get some credit. But, for now all you get is a flame comment on the AMA website that all. This comment is from an actual pilot with real full scale ratings that I worked hard for. I am also an avid “drone” guy that owns 4 camera able multi rotors cable of tv and movie industry footage. So tell me what have you done as of late to help the hobby because your comments certainly only show bitterness.

      18. REAL PILOT-

        I understand your frustration, and it’s deplorable that a field manager would threaten you. All it takes is one bad apple, to use an antiquated, and relic phrase.

        I’m 49, I’ve been building since I was 6 yrs old. Re-entered the hobby about 15 yrs ago when electric, fixed wing power systems, began to emerge. So I embrace technology completely. (I’m in IT) I build giant scale, have several ARF’s, park flyers, indoor; and I push electric power to it’s limits for every one of my projects.

        I purchased my first drone 3 yrs ago, and I love it! I can do many things, as you know, with my drone which I cannot with my fixed wing. I prefer fixed because I love Scale, but I enjoy multi-rotor just as much, and I read everything I can regarding its advancement. That said, I have been met with hostility for both the drone and the electric power plants.

        I understand where they are coming from, I think, as this is a hobby some have been in for much longer than me. It’s what they know. They have been self governed for decades and now the Feds step in and legislate their pastime. Unfortunately it’s a different world we live in. We certainly have to protect our airspace from those that wish to do it harm. We have to educate a younger generation, that moves fast, figures out tech on their own, and without much structure. (and does fine, by the way) We have a generation of folks that love the thrill of multi-rotor, but don’t necessary think the rules apply to them (not you, but a few). They aren’t hobbyists, I think, they’re folks who like the shiny object and don’t invest what’s needed to be safe, and self govern. Combine that with the isolated chance that a drone is used in a crime, and you have a new department inside homeland security.

        We have to educate within, before we can be effective, voicing our message. That starts with people like you and I.

        I am an AMA member for 3 simple reasons: 1) The org covers me if my aircraft cause damage in an accident 2) It allows me to fly pretty much anywhere I want. 3) It opens up a community to me, where I meet new friends at every event; old codgers, and some young, that will help me advance my skills and appreciate the same passion I do.

        Sure I can do all these online, and I’m certain you meet new people that enjoy flying as much as I do, on my own. But AMA has a lobby front (sometimes less effective than we’d like, and certainly needs more help) and they are working on a topic that has never come up before. I think we can all agree that working with government would be worse than sticking your hand in a spinning prop. I’m only suggesting that it’s important to have an organization that works on our behalf, because working alone would get us nowhere. It certainly would leave no time to fly.

        I hear what you’re saying loud and clear, I would challenge you though. I would challenge you to get involved, as a young person who’s technologically minded, and a multi-rotor advocate, to stick with AMA and see if you can lend a voice they don’t currently have. Bottom line is that one day, all of us “old guard” will be gone one day, and they need someone as passionate to carry the torch. Otherwise we’ll all be flying under cover, racing from field to field, as someone in law enforcement tries to confiscate our aircraft and write us a ticket.

        1. Wow, the only thoughtful and helpful reply in this entire flame thread. Well said Danny.

      19. Real Pilot.
        As a scratch builder, of eight aircraft 2 are from kits a Bird Of TIme and a Goldberg Cub.
        You attitude is explanation enough for me. I might not threaten you unless threatened but I surely would tell you clearly to get off with more than words if forced.
        Drone Punks caused this crisis and the Media and Marketing and Government have exacerbated the positions of all.
        AMA has consistently shrunk from the task of representing the members in the face of the bullsh*t.
        The same people that built the AMA since 1936 as cast aside in preference to manufacturers and the almighty damn dollar.

        Ask yourself if Dan’l Boone would register his powder horn and bullet mold.
        Samper Fi.

      20. Whether or not Real Pilot was trying to be a troll, you all fell for the bait and look worse for it. Sometimes it’s just better to ignore and move on.

    2. This obama administration really is a joke …..i cant believe how bad things are getting . What is gonna happen is clubs are gonna give up their charter and the heck with their rules …we rent our own property and we will fly unmenaced by the goverment bottom line . We have too many retired members in the club and we are not going to require registration …this is out of control !!!

      1. Right, the Obama administration. All while Republicans control both the House and Senate. Who is president only really affects some aspects of policies that the government makes, and this ain’t one of them…

        So, anyway, it still sucks. The people who are making the decisions obviously don’t really know/care about our innocent hobby.

      2. You’re blaming the [O]bama administration for a bill passed in the Republican-controlled Senate? If it’s like most Senate bills since control switched, Senate Democrats weren’t even allowed to have a hand in the writing, and of course the Senate simply ignores the Executive branch. Speaking as a lifelong Republican, let’s face it: this mess is on us.

      3. This insanity has nothing to do with the current president. John Thune is a Republican, as is the Senate majority.

        Clubs that relinquish their charter will still have to demonstrate that they fly according to the guidelines of a CBO. In the unlikely event that your club is ever visited by “men in black” or by our regions’ finest, you will have to show how you are flying within the FAA guidelines…expected to be more limiting than the surviving AMA guidelines. Owning or renting property does not grant you the overlying NAS.

        I agree that things are getting out of control. This is what happens when elected officials try to regulate something of which they are utterly unaware. We must continue to attempt to educate them. Modeling is still one of the safest operations in the NAS.

      4. If i am not mistaken it is a Republican majority Senate right now that just pased this not Obama

        1. The comment was a reflection of era of Big Government. And Obama has been on the forefront of that ideology.

      5. Jeffrey… You may rent the land, but as soon as the craft is in the air, it falls under FAA authority. They can still fine you completely into oblivion if they catch you in the air without registration. The only way to avoid that outcome is to fly indoors, or under the weight limit.

        It’s your money and your risk. I’m not trying to tell you what to do. I’d just hate to see this happen because you didn’t understand.

        You are right. It IS out of control. 🙁

      6. Seems like you failed basic civics class in high school. The bill in question originated in the Senate not the White House.

      7. I think your compass is broken. This has absolutely nothing to do with the president. Your beef would be with the people that actually make the laws. The FAA rule changes are the result of actions the legislative branch have taken – not the executive one. If you are going to point fingers – at least point them the right direction…

    3. Next you won’t be able to go to Walmart and buy a 6 Dollar foam plane to throw in the front yard with you’re kid, or fly a kite with out it being registered

      1. It equals INSANITY – plain and simple, and no ifs or buts about it.

    4. Amen my friend!!!! Sad sad days to come for this hobby The AMA must make the general public aware of what’s taking place ………run a commercial ad on TV

    5. Thank you FPV, this all started when FPV users started going places they shouldn’t have been going. Most of which are not model avaition enthusiasts. Most are not AMA member and don’t give a crap about it and just want to “get the shot” and look at it on their screen.

      Thank you AMA for not having the balls to call it like it is, FPV is the problem. They just kept and still keep on selling the death of the industry on the pages on MA the premier communications device for the AMA.

      What a joke. The AMA has zero bargaining power. The FAA is driving congress on this one. They are an agency. They are not elected. We have no power over them.

      Thanks again FPV.

    6. Thank you, Real Pilot;
      You took the words right out of my mouth. I too am a little upset that AMA members keep pointing the finger at the drone pilots.
      I fly quads for aerial photography and stills, and they have been used for a few really cool presentations. I feel it’s also detrimental to the modeling folks who built from scratch….I have been doing this since I was a kid.
      Now that I have an opportunity to fly drones for some awesome aerial photography and video, seems like a waste of money to support AMA if they are going to badmouth our hobby.

      1. This is exactly why I wont be renewing. AMA members want to disavow UAV pilots – fine. Just realize that it is non UAV flying members that are going to kill the AMA by pushing new members – a large percentage of which are not fixed wing flyers away. Again, that is fine. We will continue to fly and follow the rules – while you loose parks nationwide. Had members embraced UAVs and not pushed us away – you would have actually stood a chance at bringing pilots of a new generation under your wings in order to protect the hobby. You ruined it for yourselves – dont blame us. We tried to do things the right way and support the hobby – so when legislation kills the hobby you have only yourself to blame.


    7. You are the first person to hit the nail directly on the head. If it wasn’t for the multi-rotors we would not be in the mess we are in. They are “multi-rotors” not drones. Multi-rotors are completely different then airplanes they can be flown anywhere by anyone… RC airplanes must be flown in a safe place (club, park, farm, airport) in line of sight.

      Well written,

    8. Well having that drone flying in restricted airspace and hitting an airliner this week most likely did not help the mood of the congress on the matter of R/C Hobbyists.

      I build and fly my own foam electric planes as well as few electric warbirds and Quads.
      So who’s gonna come and inspect my foam scratch-built aircraft and arrest me if they aren’t up to FAA regs? By the way what are the regulations they are proposing anyway. Has anyone seen them?

      I lost an FAA registered Quadcopter in a fly-away due to a hardware failure recently and called the local Sheriff’s office to notify them of the flyaway and it’s accidental intrusion into protected air-space over the Federal Penitentiary in Terre Haute. The Vigo County Sheriffs Deputy I spoke with just laughed at me. He had no Idea what I was talking about or what a Quad-copter or drone was or that the air-space over the Federal Penitentiary was restricted. So these are the people the FAA has tasked with enforcement?

      It might take the financial losses by all the companies making and selling the RC parts and planes we buy to motivate the industry’s corporate lawyers to file suit with the government to change this. Congress only listens to money.

      1. i doubt any of these faa claim near misses or collisions are true its just a way they can control the hobby, they are getting scrared mostly because of hd fpv. its just another part of the decline of our freedoms. personally they can kiss it, i am sick and tired of these nazi control freaks.

    9. +1 on that. The AMA lacked the foresight to separate MODEL aircraft from these flying toys, and now all of us are suffering the consequences.

      1. You are either trolling – or simply ignorant. Which is it? I build my own UAVs from scratch. I model and 3D print my own airframes, design and etch my own boards, etc. The only commercial products in my builds are the motors, props, FPV cam and accessories. How are you going to sit there on your high horse and imply that UAVs are just “flying toys?” I guarantee you that there is far more handcraft in my UAV builds than any fixed wing you ever assembled. So, which is it you are up to – trolling or ignorance?

    10. I happen to be an RC pilot of nearly 15 years and also a multirotor pilot. I have to say that none of us are a threat to society.

      1. Of course we are NOT ! And that’s exactly why higher-ups, who have nothing better to do, have to create a mountain out of a mole-hill. Call it insanity if you will.

    11. I am unclear on if I belong to a RC Club which I do (Valley Forge Signal Seekers and AMA) do I have to register My Planes over 3 lbs.? And I am one of the few who still build My own Planes, and most of them are conversions from old Plans to Electric from Gas. AS an AMA member will You notify Me as to any tests I must take?

      1. David,

        The FAA asks that all pilots who fly UAS (models that use a communication link like a transmitter) over .55 pounds to register at

        We are quite a few steps away from this language possibly becoming law. We will notify our members through the website, emails, social media, and clubs of any changes in the law that will affect our members.

    12. No matter how much regulation there is the people with the drones that are causing the problems and bringing unwanted attention to the hobby will continue to do so not matter what . The don’t follow rules nor do they respect them. Period. It’s just a big goof to them.

      The best way to eliminate the careless drone use problem is to create high and burdensome barriers to entry.

      Require a special drone license to operate and purchase drones. Without a license you CAN NOT purchase a drone nor can a seller sell you one. In addition, they must all be registered with a some sort of VIN number. Also, there should be no RFT drones. Only ARFs.

      A one time license fee should be burdensome. Say $1,000, plus you have to take written safety and mechanical test and re-certify every 2 years. This would eliminate 99% of the casual and spontaneous buyers. (these are people causing the problems)

      If you are really into the hobby you’ll pay for a license and feel good knowing that this will keep the careless users away so you can enjoy the hobby with like-minded individuals.

      All fixed wing and helicopters are exempt. Drones (i.e. quads or octs) should be carved out separately.

      1. All forms of model aviation including multi rotors are educational and valuable. It would be terrible to put that kind of layer of restrictions on any form of model aviation keeping it out of reach of economically underpriveleged.

        1. Dumbing-down of the masses. Nothing new; it’s been in the works for sometime now. It’s just now becoming more evident with time.

      2. Chad, I believe it will eventually come to that. Just like we have to now purchase an expensive fishing or hunting licenses even if we are just trying to feed our families.

    13. I agree with you 100% .It would appear that our whole problem is being caused by “Don’t Care Idiots “who just want to do their thing .The drones (multi-rotor vehicles) should be separated from the model plane hobbyist and The AMA should stop trying to include them as part of our group .

    14. Lee Ray,
      Yes….I agree..sad times! The hobby of building and flying model airplanes has been devastated by the introduction of drones. Drones should be outlawed. If AMA had not embraced, promoted, and incorporated drones into the hobby, we would not be in this sad time.
      It would be nice if AMA would let the members vote to have drones outlawed.

    15. Lee Ray….you Hit the NAIL on the HEAD! Traditional modelers would not be in this boat now – if AMA had clearly SEPARATED “MULTI-ROTOR” DRONES from traditional model aviation. I, also have built and flown model airplanes for for 60+ years! Until AMA drives a firm wedge of separation between these new fangled Multi-Rotor Drones [ that any idiot who can push a few computer keys can fly] – all of us old time modelers – who build and fly things that “look like” airplanes – – are dead in the water!

    16. I am going on record with the government and the FAA as being a citizen who will NOT comply with these regulations
      As written. If I have to go to jail to be able to sue, so be it. This will wipe out an industry, cost thousands of jobs, and not affect the real issue at all.
      When I see a cheap suit at an AMA meeti g giving off nothing but bad “I don’t care” vibes, we are in trouble.
      Thousands of jobs are at stake, the recreation of hundreds of thousands are in jeopardy.
      I expect big things from the AMA, right now.
      How many will join me in a mass fly in to demonstrate civil disobedience if it comes to that…?

      Please…start calling any government weasel you can, shut down the phone lines, picket offices…do anything you can as individuals and groups…If it works for BLM, it can work for us….


    17. The AMA is going to need to bring a legal case/suit against this ruling. Enough playing nice with the government and the FAA. They are way, WAY out of bounds with regulations affecting our model airplanes. There is no reason recreational models should be put in the same classification as commercial aircraft. Much more effort/work needs to be put toward the differentiation between recreational and commercial uses. The government doesn’t know this – they need to be educated, or they are going to continue to lump everything that flys together! With the increased dues we AMA members are paying, I would think there are sufficient funds to support legal action which will protect this awesome and precious hobby of ours!

    18. All of you old timers replying to the drone comments are too old to identify satire,let alone a model plane in the sky.

      Most AMA clubs never did want the quad copter on their fields. You old geezers sat around complaining during the monthly club meetings, making plans to keep them off your field. You didn’t like the technology so you isolated it away from your fields. I’ve personally seen you people complaining about quada and banning them.

      The problem now is that you let the media lump all model aircraft under one group, “drones”. Now your precious stick built piper is a weapon of destruction. This is what happens when old people don’t like something they don’t understand.

      Last, the AMA didn’t do enough to save your hobby. They obviously have lousy representation. Maybe they should have spent our dues on hiring better lawyers instead. Too late now, you can kiss model aviation bye bye. The government jumped on the false media hype and will now attack this hobby because basically the MEDIA HAS TOLD THEM TOO. And who is the media? They’re the ones that are afraid of their own shadow, and if they don’t understand something they vilify it and rant on and on until they stir the pot ip. Just like the AMA fields that didn’t want quads at their fields……

    19. It is amazing to me that 14 CFR 103 ultralight vehicles with a weight up to 254lbs (empty) do not require FAA registration but .55lb “drones” do. Next thing you know we will have to register our BB guns while all other firearms will be protected by the NRA. Thank you very much to all the reckless and dangerous drone users. You are like the spoiled brat who shoots the windows in his neighborhood with a pellet gun and then runs to hide behind Mommy. I used to enjoy flying my R/C planes and electric gliders, but no more.


      Let’s just form another Federal Agency, called MAA (Model Aviation Administration). That would “create jobs,” represent the public, separate my full-sized aircraft from my model aircraft, and clear up some politics in Washington. General aviation is already being killed off by costs and over-regulation, witnessed by aircraft junkyards across the country. The model aircraft are just harder to find, hanging or shelved indoors, but equally tied down. Let’s regulate abuse, not innovation and honest liberty and justice for all.

    21. The Senate Bill does not outlaw “scratch building” or make any substantial differences to the current law for people who build their own models, except to require a safety test. Please see my long comment below, dated April 26.

  2. This is not good. Can you provide details on the “5 miles from airport.” Is this the same as before or has some other restriction worked into the bill?

    1. What has the AMA done besides try to “talk” to these guys, and submit online letters to Congress? I can guarantee you that they are not taking you seriously; hence not taking into consideration your recommendations to the bill.

      You need a legal team to bring them to court and also to the main stream media. Nothing will be done nowadays without being loud about it. Being behind closed doors and having members silently submit pre-filled complaints won’t do a damn thing.

      1. Yes, we are disappointed in the current Senate language! It is worth noting we have successfully secured other protections for our members and still have more opportunities to shape final bill language.

        This is done in large part because of the help from our members, staff, Executive Council, and a legal DC firm working daily on the Hill. Together we secured quite a few protections in the House version and resolve a lot of language in early Senate draft versions. As a reminder we have a pending petition with the US Court of Appeals.

        In the meantime, we will continue working in Congress to protect our hobby.

        1. The FAA, from this evidence, considers only R/C multi-rotor UAVs to be UAS and of concern:

          Yet even an R/C park flyer foamie weighing 251 grams, or a stick-and-tissue rubber-powered free-flight weighing 251 grams is getting caught up in this madness over “drones”. I don’t believe that was the original intent of FAA, but of course they will accept as much control as Congress is willing to hand them. I believe the main problem is that 99% of congressmen have no concept of what the greater model aircraft hobby entails, and just what they are about to kill by empowering FAA to control virtually anything that flies.

          Chad, am I wrong about even old time freeflight models being subject to these rules? That’s insane.

          Are free

          1. The FAA is primarily concerned about models over 250 grams that can be controlled by a ground control system like a transmitter. Proposed legislation from Congress, on the other hand, seems to apply to all models.

            We have engaged every office in both the House and Senate involved in this bill sharing testimonies and showing videos/photos of models. Legally we cannot conduct demos in DC, but we have hosted leaders to nearby flying fields and have an invitation to other legislators to Joe Nall.

            As a result of these efforts we were able to expand protections to now include educational use in the House version. In the Senate version we removed the 400′ ceiling limit and technological restraints. We also were able to preserve the Special Rule for Model Aircraft and the CBO model.

        2. What protections has the AMA “successfully secured” for your members? I’m stumped, the AMA has been losing since multi-rotors became mainstream.


          1. None. They secured you absolutely no protections. But they happily took your money for membership. This legislation does nothing more than confirm the rules we have already been flying by.

        3. Why does anyone care that the “special rule” was left in place, no one on this planet (FAA, USGOV, Fred and Barney, etc etc) pays any attention to it. When does something like being required to visit the FAA when you want to build your own model NOT BE A NEW REQUIREMENT OR LAW? The special rule for modelers is a bogus piece of hoopla as long as it’s being treated that way. It’s time to SUE!! Get off your duff and get the legals going. SUE THE FAA, SUE THE GUVMENT, SUE THE SENATE! We’ve been lied to, we’ve been shuttled to the sidelines with a bag over our heads! This could be my last year as an AMA member unless I see some progress. Yeah, I’m just a little bit mad!!!!!

          1. There is a suit filed by the AMA currently working its way through the legal system regarding the issue. If you know of a way to make it go faster Please pass that information on.

        4. I think you need to let the Senate understand we are playing nice.. We would be willing to abide by a few rules, but this is over reach and getting out of control. I will not be told that what I’ve been doing for years is now rendered useless…The Bozos in COngress can say what ever the hell they want say…but they can’t stop anyone… and I know if you tell me everyhthing I have is rendered useless there will be many many people not happy…and the Senate and Congress will have a lot more to worry about than raising their useless hands…Just know that now.

        5. Chad,
          When the final version of this senate bill was passed, Was it approved by vote? If so please do the entire membership a favor and provide a list of the Yea’s and Nay’es by each Senator.
          That way it will save hundreds of us finding and reading the Congressional record for today.
          If I find that my Senators voted to pass without the reasonable amendments we needed, I will actively work for their defeat at the next election.

        6. if you don’t get that SINGLE WORD “only” removed from the FAA Auth bill this hobby is toast. all of it.

          they reworded 336 to include the world ONLY which completely removes 100% of any possible protection under 336. all they have to do is pass any rule or regulation they wish and simply declare it applies to ALL sUAS and poof it now voids the 336 protections.

        7. You’re beginning to sound like the politicians now. We keep hearing how much you are fighting in our defense yet we are constantly getting updates in which we seem to loose more and more.

          1. We were able to remove a lot of potentially bad language from the bill before it left the Senate committee. As frustrating as it is for both you and I, we are not allowed to discuss those details and those successes will go under the radar.

            I don’t want to discredit the concerns of the existing Senate bill as there are some very concerning language that needs addressed!

            We still have a very promising House bill that even expands some protections. The bills will then go to another committee for another round of revisions and votes. We still have other opportunities to shape this bill.

        8. Chad, has it dawned on *anyone* at AMA that the drone regulation fight is a dead loser? Drones were and are always going to be heavily regulated. That’s why the modelers were screaming for the AMA to dissociate themselves with them.

          The way the AMA has set up the problem, arm-in-arm with drone manufacturers, there is currently no way to distinguish between real modelers and the toy users and commercial drone manufacturers. This is why we were so upset, because absolutely everyone, aside from the AMA Government relations team, could see it coming a hundred miles away.

          1. Brett,

            Most likely we would have been swept up in regulations whether we acknowledged multirotors or not. We believe the best course of action is to reach out and educate as many users as possible with programs like Know Before You Fly and educational products through distributors and sellers.

            We are the world’s largest aeromodeling association with strong roots in education, recreation, and competition. While multirotors have been heavily criticized in the media, we have some responsibility to be part of the solution and to educate as many users as possible. We believe many multirotor pilots want to be responsible participants in the airspace, but may not know how.

          2. HMM, no “reply” button? Trying to cut of discussion?

            Chad – of course you are going to get swept up in regulation *if you make absolutely no attempt to distinguish yourselves/ourselves*. Drones were *always, repeat, always* going to be heavily regulated. There was never any chance that they were not going to be regulated.

            The “education” campaign is not going anywhere, the vast majority of the offenders do not and will never hear about the AMA, much less be swayed by whatever education campaign you have.

            By linking ourselves to the drones, the AMA has created a mortal threat to traditional modeling and modelers, none of whom are responsible for the crisis caused by every toy-flying idiot crashing into airliners, spying on the Kardashians, etc. The proposed drone requirements like “geofencing” and the lack of any distinction between RC, RC FPV, CL, FF, will almost certainly make it impossible to comply. That is the *death* of modeling, period, and by extension, the death of the AMA.

            Above you appear to pass off the idea that modeler-built airplanes might be regulated to death, and the “5-mile rule” as equal in importance. The 5-mile rule might effect some sites. The inspection/construction standards *kill modeling absolutely dead*.

            The AMA response to this, to date, is unacceptable.

          3. The reply button is at the top this conversation.

            Like many in the hobby, I’m working on a plans build. While not the same as scratch building, I have a vested interest too. We are taking all concerns seriously. As for 2124, we have also partnered with a manufactures coalition to gain addition support to prevent this section from becoming law.

          4. Chad
            When will the AMA accept the fact that the problem with Drone pilots is not lack of knowledge,but just a matter “I don’t care—who is going to stop me “While education might apply to the kid that received the drone as a gift , the problem is generally with the highly invested teen and/or adult—– Wake up AMA——

          5. OK, perhaps I am misunderstanding. Several yes/no questions:

            Does the AMA Government Relations group imagine that drones can somehow avoid draconian regulation?

            Does the AMA Government Relations group genuinely believe that modelers and drone manufacturers are somehow equivalent and require the same sort of regulatory oversight?

            Does the AMA Government Relations group plan to advocate the same positions for drone manufacturers and for individual scratch/kit-build modelers?

            These are not intended as “trap” questions, I genuinely want to try to understand the AMA’s position here.

          6. Brett,

            We believe intent and how a model operates is more of a factor. For example, if a model flies beyond line of sight or flies autonomously, it should be treated and regulated differently than whether a model is physically a multi rotor or fixed wing.

            As for your last question, we are an organization centered around the recreation, sport, and educational pursuit of aeromodeling. Our advocacy efforts are centered around these aspects and our members.

      2. Spot on, I once read that legislators put those computer e-mail
        in “these guys don’t care enough to write me personally file”, I’m
        afraid AMA is getting like AARP just interested in selling insurance.

    2. Good comment above. The “5 miles from an airport” mean only commercial airports or all

      1. We believe this means all airports. The Senate did include the wording “and receives approval, to the extent practicable.” Senators are telling us the word “practicable” indicates that modelers need to make a good faith effort to reach all airports and acknowledges that is may not be practicable to fully engage some smaller airports or helipads.

    1. Wait, ban all cameras, then the government can confiscate all the smartphones in america.

      Your not very helpful.

    2. Photography is not a crime. Invading privacy is. Laws are already on the books to handle that. Commercial use of photography from a UAS is also already handled and requires no further legislation that would impede on the RC Hobby.

    3. That’s like using a bomb to put out a house fire. How about we come up with ideas that don’t throw a huge segment of fellow hobbyists under the bus along with the photographers and similar idiots.

    4. You wish to take the hobby backwards and ban FPV flying for hobbyists. That is about the most retarded solution I have heard yet.

    5. Yeah, let’s give up some freedom and kiss their ring…..maybe they will reward us and let us playbwith our toys!

    6. Sure. just ban me from the hobby. I don’t FLY unless it has a camera on it. I had a camera on my gentle lady. I bought my RADIAN years ago specifically for mounting a camera too. AP is “what I do”

      and if you think it has anything to do with camera’s your delusional.

    7. Please educate yourself. Explain how this would solve the problem. You can’t, because it won’t. Cameras have nothing to do with this.

    8. Separating drones from tradition rc planes makes sense, especialy since there are susposed to be so many of them they should start a org. like AMA

      1. We would have started our own club – but the AMA marketed their protections and benefits to us as well. Blame the AMA – dont blame us UAV pilots. I would be happy for their to be a UAV association – beleive me, we dont want to deal with you any more than you want to deal with us. We are however going to fly our UAVs with or without your or the AMAs support. UAVs are not going away – sorry bubba.

  3. Congress is obviously not listening to the constituents they “serve”. I’d wager a month’s salary that nowhere NEAR that many letters were written supporting the new restrictions. I am disheartened that this hobby, which I only recently adopted, is being painted as hostile and dangerous. I’ve already limited myself to craft under .55 lbs to avoid the overreach of registration and now I may need to take a class and carry a permit? That may require abandoning the hobby. Meanwhile, those that would intentionally misuse R/C aircraft have ZERO intention of complying with ANY ruling handed down.

    1. Mark Adams,

      In the text for the Senate bill it looks like they may be excepting the test/class for models under .55 pounds as well:

      (b) Exception.–This section shall not apply to the
      operation of an unmanned aircraft system that has been
      authorized by the Federal Aviation Administration under
      section 44802, 44805, 44806, or 44807. The Administrator may
      waive the requirements of this section for operators of
      aircraft weighing less than 0.55 pounds or for operators
      under the age of 13 operating the unmanned aircraft system
      under the supervision of an adult as determined by the

      1. Ryan, thanks for the clarification. Though that offers some hope, I am wary of any “may”, “might”, “could” or other term that leaves flexibility in the hands of the bureaucrats in charge, particularly under this administration where more control is the rule and not the exception.

    2. I plan on becoming a part of the problem if they take my hobby away. I intend to continue onward…and I will do it to spite those idiots.. Besides, our presidential election is looking rigged anyway…So if the DNC or RNC ignore the will of the people, I expect civil unrest or full blown rebellion..who knows.. in which case you’ll be able fly whatever you want.

  4. I guess I better hurry and finish this project that’s taken me a year to build and lots of money… as I might not ever get to see it fly. To Hell with Congress.

  5. Go ahead and send email to your legislators, like they give a damn what we think. The Govt. is run by bureaucrats that are owned by big business interests. They will do whatever they want, to hell with the will of the people. I say F them! Build planes, fly what you like. They will need an army to enforce any of this crap. When the Govt is no longer responsive to the people of this country, we have NO obligation to listen to their BS. The FAA better show up with lots of LEO’s, because if one of those F’rs show up at my flying site, I’m gonna tell them to go jump in a F’ing lake!! Good luck enforcing their BS, they better bring lots and lots of guns.

    1. This is exactly the same way I feel, F-em’ and let them play their stupid assinine games.
      I’ve been into ham radio for many years, the FCC did something as assinine when illegal uise of amatuer linear amplifiers were being used on 11 mtrs (CB)
      What did they do, theyn took the 10 mtr section out of the amatuer gear, penalizing the legal fellas.
      Didn’t fix a Fing thing, pissed a lot of good people off.
      Why isn’t the FAA hellbent on tracking down all the drones and multi rotors instead of harrassing a group of dedicated model fliers?
      Chasing the wrong dog for the wrong reason, like B. Allen said, “good luck on enforcing their B.S.
      THIS IS BEYOND STUPID, It’s shameful it got this far out of hand.
      Maybe the FAA can donate some funds to help me meet their new specs on my next plane build, then it’ll be exactly the way they want it.

    2. I agree the FAA or government can’t handle the laws now like gun control,our boarders and full size aircraft. screw them with them I have too much invested in my planes they would need 3 army’s to control

    3. Sadly it gotten to the point with the government that they will bring lots of guns.

  6. Everything I have read about this whole mess seems to centered around multirotors, which the public, and now even the FAA and manufacturers, now know as drones. There has been no mention of these sUASs being the same as model airplanes (or even model helicopters). When I registered with the FAA, the website displayed examples of sUAS that need to be registered, and they were all multirotors, with no mention of model airplanes. There’s an article in the current AOPA Pilot magazine about regulating “drones,” and there is no mention of model airplanes. There are numerous other examples in recent publications, and it’s all about multirotors, not model airplanes.

    I have now joined the ranks of those decrying the day AMA decided to welcome these nuisances into its fold. Maybe we had to in self defense, but that doesn’t seem to be working, either. My definition of a model is something that is designed to at least resemble a large-scale prototype, i.e., whether they be “real” airplanes, helicopters, cars, or boats. Multirotors are nothing like that.

    To make things worse, I was at three different hobby shops over the most recent holiday shopping season. Two were part of a large, well-known chain. Those were in Florida, the other a local hobby shop in a city near me. I witnessed in two cases an employee showing and demonstrating a multirotor to teenagers, and once to a father who said he promised his kid a drone for Christmas if he got straight As. In all three cases, the sale was made and the customers left happy. Not once, however, was there any mention of safe, smart, or responsible operation. Sale made, got the money, we’re done.

    Anyway, I wonder if DOT/FAA and Congress ever even knew or intended at the outset that what they were proposing would include model airplanes. Unfortunately, somehow models got caught in the crossfire, it seems to me. To make it worse, we’re dealing with people who, for the most part, don’t have much of a clue about the distinction. I’m a retired FAA, Contract Tower, and DoD air traffic controller, as well as a current commercial pilot, and I can tell you from experience that many FAA employees, including many air traffic controllers and those that come up with these rules, have little or no interest in, much less passion for, aviation. It’s just a well-paying job. If you asked one of them to draw a picture of what it is that he or she is concerned about, you’d probably get a picture of a camera with four legs and four or six little circles depicting rotors. Not somebody flying an RC Cub, sailplane, or helicopter.

    FAA’s motivation has always been that it reacts to accidents, incidents, and bad publicity and the actions it takes are primarily to defend itself from ongoing or anticipated criticism by the press, NTSB, or Congress. Safety is often a by-product, but not always, as in this case. To be sure, there are many high-quality people in the FAA, but the bureaucracy and CYA mentality always wins.

    This has gotten totally out of hand, and I don’t think that initially they were even talking about us.

    1. Oh, and I assume the author of this article meant “Detrimental” rather than “Determinatal.”

      1. The term drone is being used interchangeably…something the AMA should have come out swinging to correct! The quads themselves aren’t bad. The problem is that ANYONE can get one and “fly” it with ZERO experience. I watched a quad crash at work because a guy was flying it around a water tower…lost site, panicked and hit return to home. It flew into the water tower and crashed to the ground. It’s because he had NO CLUE how to fly without the quad flying itself! I know how to fly…but even with that knowledge, I bought a cheap V222 quad to learn how to fly quads before I even ATTEMPTED to fly a 350 and 450 size quad! AMA should have created some sort of outreach program with vendors, etc to get information out to them on learning how to fly, etc! AMA dropped the ball on this one BIG TIME! Not only did they fail the active membership, they lost countless opportunities to gain more members!

    2. I recently purchased a “drone”, 400mm actually and the salesman at Hobbytown was very specific about safety, laws and regulations and their abuses. Not all sellers are only in it for the gain.

    3. Glen R,

      Regarding “My definition of a model is something that is designed to at least resemble a large-scale prototype, i.e., whether they be “real” airplanes, helicopters, cars, or boats. Multirotors are nothing like that. ” there are already prototypes of multi rotor style man carrying aircraft. So in the future people will be able to fly scale multi rotors.


    4. They most certainly deliberately included fixed wing hobbyists. Search youtube. Flying out of VLOS, over 400ft, over crowds, filming cities and sensitive areas, etc…. is NOT just being done with drones. It might be more “popular” and more “media worthy” but PLENTY of people are doing the exact same thing with fixed wing aircraft. Don’t blame our problems on others. Own it and respond responsibly.

    5. The kind of idiots that are causing these problems probably don’t even know AMA fields exist. No favors would be done by shunning new technology, and only serves to drive away new members that will find other places to fly. This is not an equipment problem, this is a demographics problem. No homemade ‘drone’ (as much as I hate to use the tabloid terminology) has ever been involved in one of these incidents. That should be a sign, and one that many members of our own hobby seem to conveniently forget.

    6. I’m not sure that the AMA welcoming multirotors into the organization made any difference in this whole mess. Multirotors are radio controlled. Therefore, they fall into the same class as airplanes and helicopters….at least as far as the FAA is concerned. It seems to me that the FAA didn’t really have any intention of singling out the types of radio controlled vehicles that were causing the trouble, or they would have directly addressed multirotor vehicles only, rather than lumping everything together. From the evidence, it should be obvious to any thinking person that R/C airplanes and helicopters are not a threat to anyone, especially when flown by AMA members. And neither are multirotors when they are flown in accordance with AMA’s Safety Code. I can’t say what FAA’s motive was in doing things the way that they did, but the FAA is not stupid or inept. If they are trying to eliminate or severely restrict model aviation in America, only they know the real reason. Maybe it will be revealed 50 years from now in a History Channel documentary! (LOL).

    7. Your response is well written Glenn. Unfortunately Mr. Brown and company at the AMA involved us by default by trying to lump autonomous drones and other models in one category creating no real distinction until it was too late in the process.

    8. Glen — I never knew that the AMA had such close-minded morons such as yourself in it’s membership. I started flying helicopters but fell in love with my “drone” racing because it took me back to the days of flyer racing in StarWars. Everyone in my group, and in may places AROUND THE WORLD, fly these in small lots not exceeding any more than a 6 – 10 foot height. As such we cause no problems for anyone including aircraft 5 miles away, because we practice a hobby that not only is low to the ground, but the perfect fields contains paths through tree-littered areas.

      It is obvious that YOU have never given it a try and yet you are very quick to shoot at us fellow hobbyists. Maybe AMA should remove people like you from the organization.

    9. it has absolutely nothing to do with drones versus airplanes.

      the FAA only has authority to cover drones if they cover “ALL” aircraft no exceptions. period. otherwise their authority vanishes.

      so even if the AMA never TOUCHED drones and in fact violently shunned them. the result would be PRECISELY the same. absolutely zero change whatsoever.

    10. Glenn,
      I agree with you on many of your comments!!

      I have to say, it REALLY pissed me off when I “registered” with the FAA and the whole stupid web site was COMPLETELY centered around multi-rotor “drones”. Nowhere, and I mean NOWHERE was there anything that resembled MODEL AIRCRAFT on their entire site.

      I emailed them regarding this and am still awaiting a response…right.

      As for your comments on the hobby shops…that has been the case for years! Kids go to a toy store and buy this toy flying machine. They have no concept of AMA, safe flying, or anything else…it’s not their fault, as manufacturers and toy stores are not required to include any information whatsoever…you just cash and carry. That is the problem. That is also the problem with this stupid FAA law…the only ones suffering are the legitimate hobbyist like us. No kid at a toy store, I guarantee you, is going to run home, register his toy drone, put the markings on it as specified, and THEN take it to a sanctioned flying field. He’s gonna rip it out of the box, stick the batteries in, and head out to the front yard. Whatever…preaching to the choir here, I’m sure…

      I have a question, perhaps this isn’t the right place, but just exactly how do I “notify the tower” that I’m going to be flying less than 5 miles away?? Do I just somehow drive up to the control tower, knock on the door, and tell the controllers what I’m doing?? Really?? Would this be before, or after they call the local police to get rid of this idiot that’s harrassing them?

    11. >Multirotors are nothing like that.

      You have obviously never seen my (and many others) builds. I make my own designs, print my own airframes, and even design my own circuitry. Do you build at that level with your fixed wing?

      So maybe your statement is correct after all. Fixed wings are nothing at all like quads built by real engineers.

  7. So do I have to get an A&P mechanic from the FAA to inspect my model at home before I can fly it?

    1. And you would need to submit a 337 form to the FAA to document any repairs.

      All of this is truly nuts. It has been said our government could screw up a free lunch. Now you see thenm in action. So now you can understand how a presidential candidate that is running against government is getting so much support.

    2. After reading the new proposed bill I would have to YES you will definitely need a A&P

    3. My wife’s friend has a brother who is some sort of airframe mechanic, I’ll ask him… Hmm…I also have a 30+ year old Enya .40 with, uh oh, I didn’t log the hours on that engine…gotta be at least 2000+ hours on it by now…sooo…do I need to take it in and have it torn down and inspected before I throw it in my next model??? Hey, what’s the interval on servos?? Where can I get a spec sheet for air pressure requirements on Du-bro tires?

      1. Rob
        forget the engine and servo inspections—–it’s the air frame we are concerned about .You remember that hard landing you had last month ??

    4. I’m an A&P, I cant seem to make any money with the license for full scale maybe there is opportunity in models. seriously.

  8. So, how is this going to effect chartered clubs that are actually on Airport Property ? Such as the National AMA site ?

    1. We are working to push out communication as quickly as possible and some grammatical errors may slip from time to time. Fixed, thanks!

  9. The point of separating multi-rotor “drones” from my home built model is a great plan. I am so disappointed with this entire thing that I am about to drop the AMA membership and sell all my planes and radios. I have been flying since I was a boy and now that I want to teach my sons the hobby is, in my eyes, going to hell. What fun is it to take your kids out and have some cop or whom ever to ask you for your proof of passing the FAA test. My kids have park and back yard flyers what’s next can’t fly in my back yard. Who is going to enforce this new law? Are the flying clubs going to require proof of training? They already require AMA Membership. Will they get fined if you have members with no training? Where will this end?
    –Signed– Disappointed

    1. If the FAA thinks passing a test and getting a license (proof of passing) will cure the problem ,I suggest they talk to the dept. of motor vehicle about speeding tickets ,failure to stop,running red lites,etc.,etc.,etc,——

    2. What about my home-built multicopter? The device that I spent hours agonizing over part choices, frame geometry, wight distribution, battery quality, RF isolation and transmission position. Has everyone else forgotten that there’s a genuinely fast-growing community of scratch-builders that are driving most of the innovation in the field?

      A home-built copter has never been the subject of any of those ridiculous tabloid articles. Let’s not give in to the yellow journalism and promote pointless infighting among our own.

  10. The actual bill is here:

    Search for sections 2124, 2129, and 2130

    Our hobby as we have know it is coming to an end. The irresponsible use of new technology by people who care not one little whit about model aviation have brought us to this point. I will go to my grave mystified why the AMA thought they could bring these people into the fold. Instead they have become our downfall. So sell your planes and by an FPV racing quad. The are now TWO AMA Special Interest Groups for them!!

    1. It was AMA that caused this man..back when this started quads weren’t even a blip on the radar! You are correct that most of the people flying quads couldn’t fly controls on their own if they tried…but there was NEVER anything offered or tried by AMA to bring those people into the fold as far as I can see!

    2. Bill said: ” I will go to my grave mystified why the AMA thought they could bring these people into the fold.”

      No mystery. The AMA was openly hostile to change and new technology and actively dismissed those new-fanlgled drones. Instead of recognizing the huge potential of welcoming tens of thousands of potential new members, the AMA said “Hell, No”. Now it’s too late. The AMA can try all they want to be the lead organization for small UAS operators, but that horse is out of the barn.

    3. It doesn’t have too…take a few days off and go to Washington DC protest…

    4. more clueless people. seriously. this has nothing to do with irresponsible usage.

      this has to do with competition. commercial and government interests don’t want “competition”

      don’t believe me? read the list of names involved in the “task force” to work on this legislation. nough said.

      1. Chris, with all due respect, you are wrong. I am an aircraft technician and also the Director of Maintenance for a major aircraft repair facility as well as a dedicated modeler owning multi rotor equipment and several FPV equipped aircraft for many many years. I deal with the FAA nearly everyday. I have been watching this whole thing develop since the beginning and I can assure you, this all began when the drones that require little or no education or training began showing up in shopping malls across the country. Sure, there are responsible drone drivers like yourself out there but the idiots with absolutely no experience or proper training that buy a drone at 9:00 AM and have it in the air by noon are where the problem began. I know because I heard it directly from the FAA. I was told that there was a problem and that it was just a matter of time before they would have to step in and take over with regulations to control the near misses occurring daily with passenger carrying aircraft. My boss flies a Cessna 210 and he had an encounter with a large drone at nearly 5000 feet!!! What the hell was a drone doing at 5000 feet! Clearly a person that has little or no regard for the rules that modelers have followed religiously since the 40’s.

    5. Line of site operation is exempted from the regulations of 2124. Kit building will be no more dead than it already is.

      1. I believe that you may be incorrect. The exemption further states:
        “unless the Administrator
        determines that is necessary to ensure safety of the
        airspace.” (Section 2124, h. Exclusions, lines 4-6)

        It appears that this wording negate the LOS exclusion appearing at the beginning of h. If the Administrator decides that sailplanes, for instance, could endanger the NAS by operating above 400 ft, glider guiders would be thrown under the bus. Also, the Administrator might decide that, since a flyaway could travel beyond the LOS, and perhaps above the altitude cap, it would likely represent a hazard to the NAS, thus negating the exclusion.

  11. This is so sad for a hobby that should be fun and exciting to build and fly model planes, helicopters and drones.. I don’t see how putting your name and number on a drone or model plane will make anything safer for anyone. If you are going to do something you shouldn’t people will just leave that information off. Also having to pass a safety test and have your flying machine pass some kind of inspection will make this hobby die. If the AMA doesn’t step up and get this figured out I will unfortunately decide to sell my stuff and not join next year. Also I have talked to pilots of commercial planes and they fear hitting birds far more then a UAV or RC plane.

    1. You’re right Chris, I’m a commercial pilot as well and bird strikes are a FAR greater issue!

  12. The multi rotor drones have taken over and ruined the model aviation hobby. The beaurocrats will continue to tighten regulations as reckless incidents with them occur. It’s a shame they now burden all model aircraft with regulations brought on by the drones.

    1. NO…no…AMA has failed every single one of us. This has been going on since like…2008! AMA did NOTHING but stand by as the Mack truck was heading our way!

    2. The only thing that drones have against them other then model planes is how easy they are to fly.. so there will be more problems with them.. I would be willing to bet that in the past 10 years or so planes and heli’s have caused more injury then multirotors have. If people do stupid things with any plane, car, boat, multirotor etc.. go after those people not the general hobbyist.

    3. Its a shame to try to put the blame on us drone owners because like everything else its just a very small minority that have caused the problems. I would have hoped that you would have welcomed us to the RC flying hobby, my local club, Rock Valley Flyers in Rockford, IL has certainly made me feel very welcome. The majority of us are very responsible. Please don’t try to put the blame on us.

    4. Blaming it all on drones is idiocy. It’s about the advancement of technology that has enabled new types of operations. If drones did not exist people would still have the technology called FPV, where a model AIRPLANE can be flown miles away out of line of sight if desired. They can also be outfitted with GPS, autopilots, point to point pre-programmed navigation, etc.
      Certainly drones have proliferated but thats technology for you. Things change. The very technology that has enabled all this could easily be used to solve all the problems but the FAA isn’t interested in that. They are influenced by fear mongering media which wrongly influences public perception.
      Now apparently there are forces at work trying to keep folks from building their own scratch built craft. This is the very heart of model aviation and special interests are wielding their influence. They don’t want anyone to be able to build their own aircraft because then you have to purchase one from a major manufacturer that way. This is absolute #%(*!#$. To hell with the AMA, an archaic relic from the past who’s subscription model is ridiculously old, old, school. To hell with this US Government I am tired of supposedly living in the “bastian of freedom” that is getting to be the most restrictive, cowardly nanny state on earth. Time to move.

    5. Perfectly stated. Hopefully my r/c boats will be safe from governmental over-reach! Look around folks (at the idiots who care less about following the rules), it will only take ONE major incident between a “drone” and an aircraft and we can all kiss our hobby goodbye.

      1. Hi Steve,

        I am also a long time RC boater, scratch and kit built, scale. I am also a full scale commerical fixed wing and helicopter pilot and have been flying RC , (no rotor)for the last 10 years or so.

        One of the first things that came to mind when this whole registration mess with the FAA came about, was, how long before the US COAST GUARD came knocking on my door.


        P.S. I’m also ex NAVY, I like it all….. It’s just a case of BIG BROTHER

    6. “Multi-rotor drones” haven’t ruined the hobby, accessibility has. I’ve been flying for years, and have tried a little of everything that flies. The only thing that makes multi-rotors different is that they are cheap, durable and popular. They don’t fly particularly different than a flybarless fixed pitch heli, and they are a heck of a lot less dangerous than a lot of larger, traditional models. When they are similar in size and power, what point is there to separate them out?

      The problem is that improvements in the technology that we’ve been enjoying for years has made it affordable and accessible enough for anybody to buy a bit of flying fun. Instead of complaining that these people are ruining the hobby, why don’t we incorporate them, educate them, and give them a safe place to fly?

    7. To be clear, hobbyists haven’t caused any of these problems, no matter what they’ve flown. The huge majority of multirotor hobbyists are as perfectly responsible as fixed-wing, helicopter, blimp… whatever fliers. The issue is non-hobbyists seeing the value in the platform as a photography/videography tool. They don’t care if they make a mess in our world.

      A sure fire way to drive away a lot of new members and support is to needlessly shun entire swaths of our fellows with tabloid news terminology and rhetoric.

    8. What about the reckless use of Fixed Wing craft? Don’t believe it happens? Think again. Search youtube…. it’s just as prevalent. It’s just not in the media. The FAA certainly knows it is not just quadcopters out there misbehaving.

      1. I’m sorry, if I paint an American flag on it would that make you happy?

        This is an argument of semantics, not of practicality.

  13. Stop playing footsie with these clowns in Washington and tell them to take a hike. It’s going to force long time flyers to stop paying AMA dues and just fly outside the regulations. I’d rather fly in a farm field anyway without the hassle and furthermore I’ll put my 18 year old 1/4 scale Cub quality up against this junk they are selling in kits today. I’m totally disgusted 40 year veteran RC pilot. No more regulations for me !!!!!

  14. This WILL kill most all SIG’s of our hobby. A lot of our hobby is supported by cottage industry kit makers and suppliers. These will die a quick death while the new rules are sorted and even if repealed will be too late to save a hobby that has been on life support.

    Sorry AMA, I blame YOU for not distancing yourself and us members from the FPV drones when you had the chance. Instead you got greedy and went for the big potential new members, and the advertising $$$. I understand why, but it was the WRONG choice, and many of us members tried to voice that to you and we went ignored.

    We went over 50 years without any real worry about major incurrence of our planes with full scale aircraft flight space, and fixed wing, FF, heli, C/L, etc. continue to be almost statistically invisible as to these problems. By lumping us in with these FPV Drones, you have tarred us with the same brush. These FPV Drones are in another universe, and should have been treated that way from the beginning.

    Thanks AMA, but you screwed up, big time. It was fun while it lasted. *sigh*

  15. Dear Sir, Based on the text above AMA members are at a further disadvantage than non-members. Non AMA members take no exams yet still retain the right to fly?

  16. I am disappointed in myself for putting my faith in the AMA. You have lost every battle and the war is coming to an end as will my membership…


    You’all must be Cub fans – used to losing…

  17. Our legislative process is broken. A good, well-intended bill can be modified, added to, taken from and generally perverted from original intent.

    The law specificallly excluding “model aircraft” from FAA aegis is clearly being ridden over rough-shod. I would think reminding Members of Congress and the Senate of that would be enough to get their egos involved.

    What are the specifics on the 5 mile from an airport provisions? Towered fields? Non-towered? Class B airspace only?

    And, surely the inanity of having FAA rules for home designed/built model aircraft weighing less than 55 pounds should be obvious to any rational individual.

    Thank you for your continuing efforts.

  18. This is truly an indication of “government gone bad”. Here we have an established organization, the AMA, becoming a target simply because “it’s there”, and Congress wants to leave the impression that they are doing there jobs by spanking this organization.
    The onslaught of the relative new drones readily available as either Park Flyers, or back yard entertainment has hurt our established organization. Just because the items could be sold, assembled “in home”, and flown in a back yard. Whether close to private airports, civil airports, or commercial. The Governments reaction? Penalize the established AMA…..Reach out and continue your efforts to inform your local Congressman/Senator. Tell them you want them to represent the members of the AMA fairly, and to recognize the over fifty years of safety demonstrated every day at AMA flying fields and clubs. Stand up! Are you willing to give up your right to build a 1/4 or 1/3 scale kit in your basement shop? Stand up and be heard!

  19. Before we issue a blanket condemnation of the, as yet unpublished FAA UAS regulations, let’s see what they are, or might be. What if these regulations are quite reasonable and practical? Instead of shooting this down, let’s be part of the process to come up with a reasonable solution.

    I see no reason not to assure the public that my plane, helicopter or multi rotor meets some minimum airworthiness standard. And, I certainly believe we, as pilots need to know basic flight and safety principles and should be able to document that.

    Look at the instruction manuals of aircraft offered by reputable manufacturers to get a good start on the language of the both flight and safety fundamentals. Ask these same companies to offer up language for specifying basic design criteria. Use this as a practical vehicle towards legislation.

    If we participate in the solution, we have a much better chance of an equitable outcome. If recent events are any indication, we WILL have to abide by a new set of rules if we want to continue. We are all part of the problem. Let’s help with the solution.

  20. As a licensed private pilot I am concerned that a violation of the new proposed regulations may result in FAA pulling my license to fly full scale aircraft. How can my Citabria built from a kit meet the design require ments of the new rules. Will I he to have an annual inspection by a licensed A&P mechanic. Where will it end. I have been in this hobby over 60 years and flying full scale for 30. I guess I will hang it up.

  21. YUP, the AMA is a day late and a dollar short on this information. I read the bill and knew of this at LEAST a month ago! Where has AMA been!? Heads in the sand I bet! It’s about time for the young guard to create a new organization that has the fortitude to fight government!

  22. Just trying to know from whom these regulations got started and whether in Congress or was it from the Administration. Seems Congress can’t get anything pertinent to the Country done so they are picking on a very small hobby.

    1. Dianne Feinstein ( California senator ) and Charles ( Chuck ) Schumer ( New York senator ). This is now common knowledge.

  23. I agree with Lee. Drones need to be separated from traditional model aviation. The hobbyists who will be affected the most are the ones who follow the rules and have supported the AMA and enjoyed the hobby for years. Many but not all of the drone people are into the hobby because of the current trend and popularity and will simply find another hobby if this gets signed. I have been an aviation enthusiast since I was 5 years old. In 1980, my grandfather took me to my first airshow in Williamsport Pennsylvania and I have never looked back. I am one of those people who started a career in aviation because of my early exposure to airplanes, both full scale and models. My grandfather built several models including Goldberg Falcons, Piper Cubs a 1/3 scale Fly baby bipe and many others. I had the pleasure of watching him build many of them and I spent plenty of Sunday afternoons at the local flying fields in our area watching before I got into the hobby many years later. Its a shame that this great hobby that many of us have enjoyed for so long is being threatened because of the negligence of a few.

  24. My two senators, Dick Dirtbin and Mark Kirk are the definition of worthless. The US House is the only place I remotely have a voice.

    “Unnecessary regulation on hobbyists that build at home…” Elaborate, please. What good is it to mention it and provide no details?

    As others have mentioned, your member relations and legal teams need help. Perhaps they should take a lesson from the NRA re: how to effectively communicate with the membership and mount a meaningful challenge to legislation detrimental to member interests. For an organization that supposedly has the inside track on dealing with the federal government, you guys look pretty weak and unorganized.

  25. This has become a total joke.
    AMA is totally useless, and if you want to argue that point tell me ONE thing they have done right so far in the unholy mess that we are in.
    The AMA is in so far over there head that don’t even know what day it is.
    Sad that such a great hobby will be brought to it’s knees buy a bunch of elected fools
    how dont have a clue as to what its going on.

  26. AMA is failing to disambiguate Freeflight and RC line-of-sight aircraft with UAV’s. This is a HUGE mistake. Model aircraft are not problems and have not been for almost 100 years!

    This is ALL about airspace for commercial UAV’s at low-levels across the US and the commercial interests are bowling-over the AMA. Stop trying to play nice and co-exist. Models will not co-exist with commercial interests on this issue any more than we would flying at 10,000 feet with full-scale aircraft! This is exactly what is happening – onerous rules for model aviation intended for commercial aircraft. This is the death of model aviation and the AMA!

    Outreach goes beyond AMA members. Legislators love STEM, schools love STEM get them involved! Innovation is one of the things that makes the USA great. Model aviation stimulates learning, leading young men and women into science, technology and military careers. There are many supporters in Congress and our communities. What is the AMA doing to foster these relationships?

  27. All these new regulations are because the DRONES. As Lee Ray says “PLEASE consider a final plea in asking congress to separate multi-rotor “drones” from traditional model aviation before everyone loses.” Make it simple, AMA should not support DRONES any longer. By AMA trying to regulate all the Model Aviation business will lose it all.

    Congress and FAA likes to make it simple and are making one regulation for all Models.

    DRONES are not like a Model Helicopters. Helicopters are complicated, highly technical, expensive, difficult to operate and normally requires help from an experienced operator that in the majority of the cases are based on a CBO.

    Traditional models are significantly different than a DRONE. DRONES usually don’t requires an airfield, can be operated from any place and don’t need operators to be in a CBO. Today’s DRONES can be really cheap, can easily carry video & photography equipment, can be managed by people with very little or no experience on the Hobby and that is a real threat to the Public and Aviation.

  28. If you were one of the 30,000+ who responded to the AMA request, as I was, thank you. If you were not, don’t blame the AMA if this all goes “sideways”. YOU are the AMA. Your voice makes no impact if it is only heard at the field or in a club meeting. Write, call, email or visit your representative and ask to stop this invasive and unneeded legislation component. WE need to be louder than all the “chicken little” complainers who only see the sensational news reports about drones. I don’t like multi-rotors and never will but no one can stop the multitude of them from being sold to idiots who don’t know or care about what they should do with it.
    In my opinion the AMA as an organization should generate national attention by making a public statement about multi-rotors and their difference from traditional model planes. And in that statement, distance themselves from rogue operators who put the entire model aircraft hobby world in jeopardy when they fly in a manor contrary to AMA guidelines. We, the traditional model airplane hobbyist, get thrown into the same pot as drone drivers by those who don’t understand or care about the difference. If we get shutdown by legislation its our own fault because we did not yell louder than our opponents and that’s the only language congress understands. WE must sway public opinion to our side.

  29. May I suggest you reach out the Jeff Bezos at Amazon? As you may know Jeff is a long time air and space enthusiast who is heading the Blue Origin project. As well, Amazon is certainly at the fore-front of commercial UAV development. He could be a great way to work from the inside to get what the AMA wants.

  30. Section 2124 says:

    “(h) Exclusions.–This section shall not apply to unmanned aircraft systems that are not capable of navigating beyond the visual line of sight of the operator through advanced flight systems and technology, unless the Administrator determines that is necessary to ensure safety of the airspace.”

  31. OK, I get the point that today’s 40% model aircraft could, with the right radio equipment, fly farther, carry a bigger (dangerous) payload, and potentially cause more damage than an off-the-shelf “drone” from Wal-Mart. But, as others have pointed out… are new laws going to stop someone with ill intent from doing what they want to do? Has the TSA, in the past 10 years, caught a single “bomber”…no. They’ve collected countless tubes of toothpaste in the name of national security, and delayed thousands of passengers from reaching their final destination. Now, they’ll turn those facts around and let you know that not a single “incident” has happened on American soil since their creation. The FAA, after the rules are adopted, will tell you that not a single “drone” has committed an act of terror… but countless hobbyists will have been kicked off of fields and otherwise impacted, all in the name of safety. Big government rolls on, and they have fear on their side… hard to stop that. Just ask Fidel Castro.

  32. I too was a little confused by the FED UAS application. Nowhere did it mention fixed wing
    aircraft. Every illustration was of a drone. I wrote to the AMA for a clarification but got no reply.
    I did read somewhere that all RC flyers had to file an application. But not being a layer
    if “fixed wing” is not mentioned in these regs why the hell do we fixed wing flyers have to abide by
    rules intended for drones? Just more bureaucratic BS.

  33. Drones, multi rotors and irresponsible people using them for unintended uses are the reason why the hobby is having so much trouble. Rc planes and helis were fine for years without any problems, threats, invasion of privacy, flying over the White House and sporting events. These should never had been allowed for purchase to the public.
    I agree that putting your faa number on your aircraft is a joke and a way for them to make money off of hobbyists.
    Now as a result of improper representation by the FAA and irresponsible users the hobby is slowly coming to an end.

    1. The problem is the definition of “Drone” As currently defined, ALL remotely piloted vehicles (that includes model aircraft) are drones and therefore fall under the proposed regulations. Its all a matter of definition and wording the regulations to achieve the desired result. The problem is that lawyers are a work here and their job is to ignore or redefine the intent of words.

  34. In my opinion, if model aircraft had been the flying object that gained popularity by the masses as “drones have, we would be dealing with the same issues. There would be idiots flying places they shouldn’t, attaching modern technology that some find “creepy”, and causing people in power to push new regulations and laws. I fly “drones” and I fly responsibly. I take every opportunity to educate those around me and I always start with safety and risks. I don’t like how people that fly model aircraft are making this issue about the type of object I fly. It’s not my fault it’s popular and has idiots doing dumb things with them. Let’s focus on the reason we’re here which is the actions by idiots, not by the product they purchase or built.

  35. “we asked you to contact your Senators requesting support of an amendment to resolve provisions in the Senate’s FAA reauthorization bill that could be detrimental to our hobby. Thanks to your efforts over 30,100 letters were sent to Congress…
    Unfortunately… several of the provisions that passed the Senate, which could undermine our community’s model aircraft activity…”

    So let me get this straight. I want to make sure I understand what this article is saying. The AMA got its members to write their Senators to support a provision. and it turns out that provision is BAD for our hobby?!?!?

    Thanks a lot AMA. I’m beginning to think the AMA does not know how to serve our best interest.

  36. Can someone tell me what aircraft the “FAA design and certification standards” apply to in the senate bill? Is it just non LOS aircraft or all home built craft?

    1. The standards do not exist yet. The Senate tasks the FAA to create the standards in one year after the bill becomes law. In the latest version we do not see a line of sight exemption.

      1. Chad will the ama be trying to attempt to use Joe Nall attendees as supporting drone day?

  37. Now is the time to separate the quads from fixed wing aircraft. keep our ama fields the same and make the quads follow rules that pertain to them only. have there own separate organization. if there are so many of them let them fight for there interest’s. no body even knew we existed till the quads came out. sorry quad flyers

  38. People are finally figuring out that the opportunity was lost a long time ago. The AMA decided to embrace camera-carrying drones and nobody was clairvoyant enough to figure out that this would result in the bulk of the suppliers in the industry being regulated out of business. It’s telling how out-of-touch the AMA *still* is that they mention scratchbuilding (which almost no one does any more) and only allude to the entire industry of RC production which is in danger.

    There is no way a wooden ARF, made in quantities of less than 10,000, is going to be made to pass an FAA design inspection. Right now, our basic ARF model aircraft are made by the lowest bidder, for the lowest bidder, and it’s only a lot of ingenuity which brings good products out of this. I wonder how FAA designated design inspectors are going to feel about removable wings? Or an 18 pound 3D model with 60CC power? Or a turbine jet with vectored thrust? Or a BEC powering servos in an electric plane?

    Unless something miraculous happens, all of the choice we have in RC products is about to go away, I fear. Thousands of jobs in this country (and because the US market drives the industry) and others are about to be lost. Larger manufacturers may be able to add the technical staff and spend the time to get a smaller suite of products inspected, but you can bet that giant drone companies like DJI ($1 billion in sales this year) are going to throw their weight into making the inspection process draconian to keep out drone startups…and they’ll wipe out airplane manufacturers in the process.

    I have no faith that anyone at AMA understand this, and I know sure as shooting that they haven’t polled industry professionals about any of these things. The verbiage in their letters indicates that they think scratchbuilding is the critical thing. Amazing. At this point, all efforts should be focused on a compromise, such as a production-quantity allowance before certification, or even better a self-certification or AMA-driven cert process for certain product types. I hope someone has thought of this and has been pushing for it. If the FAA is really empowered to create a certification process applied to all RC aircraft and products with their galactic level of ignorance, it will be a sh*t show of epic proportions that may just erase an industry.

    If we do get a compromise engineered by the AMA and it has something like an ‘exemption for prototypes’ or a production cap of 5 units, then I hope you all put flaming bags of dog crap on their porches when there are no airplanes to buy.

  39. “One of the provisions would require all UAS, including model aircraft, to meet new FAA design and production standards and impose unnecessary regulation on hobbyists who often build their own models at home.”

    So let me get this straight…The FAA now has to approve all model airplane designs?

    ARE THEY SERIOUS !?! The FAA has to “certify” my foam-board model?!?

    This whole thing has become such a ridiculous charade fueled by the fear-mongering press and the ignorant public that now everyone is in a frenzied panic. Those self-serving, self-appointed “royalty” up there in Washington (Congress, Senate, FAA) need to get a grip on reality. Oh yea, they don’t know what reality is…just caught up in their own little world!!!

    “Pssstt…hey buddy, wanna buy a balsa glider?” (opens raincoat to show a little Gillows glider kit).
    “Shhh, not so loud, you want to get us both in trouble?” “Only $200 bucks”

    AS for me, I’m about fed up. Anybody want to buy some radio equipment and a few model airplanes?

  40. There is no doubt about it, the AMA failed miserably when it comes to this issue. I am a member in good standing and I am at my wits end. First and foremost is the fact that the FAA, the Senate, and the House have repeatably made moves, written rules, or passed versions of the re-authorization bill that included language that the AMA objected to and lobbied against. It also seems that the AMA has often been caught off guard and/or surprised by these events. To me that indicates that the AMA is on the outside looking in and has few friends in Washington.

    Why is the AMA so ineffective? Perhaps its the mixed message the AMA sends out. While it is regrettable that the traditional RC and UAS communities can’t coexist under one sanctioning body it is clear now that RC needs separation from the “drone” world. Every month I receive my copy of the AMA Model Aviation magazine and month after month I see an endless stream of “drone” ads. Not just any ads mind you but most of the prime ad space. How effective can the AMA be arguing the case that traditional RC should be seen in a different light then UAS when their own motives are questionable. Last year the FAA said as many as one million “drones” might be in the air by Christmas. Imagine a world where every drone owner had to register with not the FAA but say a private, non profit sanctioning/governing body like, I don’t know, the AMA lets say. So which would generate more revenue traditional RC or UAS. I sure wish I really knew where the AMA stands on this.

  41. It is because of all the store-bought “drone” hooligans who have shown total disregard for safety boundaries and have zero experience at model building and flying that we are in this mess. I have been building and flying radio controlled “models” for over 30 years and I have never before witnessed the likes of the the pure carelessness and disregard for public safety as from the “multi-rotor drone community”. The fact is that without your gyros and GPS your “drones” wouldn’t even get off the gound. You clowns have all just taken a huge dump on one of the worlds greatest hobbies. Thank you for ruining this great hobby for me and my fellow modelers and our children & grandchildren’s future enjoyment.

  42. AMA you did this to us and yourself! You should have never tried to bring the “Drone Crowd” into the AMA fold. I wrote AMA my concerns some time ago but to no avail. I can’t pick up copy of the AMA magazine w/o seeing ads and pictures of these Quads. You should be ashamed for helping to ruin our lifetime hobby.

  43. Why does anyone care that the “special rule” was left in place, no one on this planet (FAA, USGOV, Fred and Barney, etc etc) pays any attention to it. When does something like being required to visit the FAA when you want to build your own model NOT BE A NEW REQUIREMENT OR LAW? The special rule for modelers is a bogus piece of hoopla as long as it’s being treated that way. It’s time to SUE!! Get off your duff and get the legals going. SUE THE FAA, SUE THE GUVMENT, SUE THE SENATE! We’ve been lied to, we’ve been shuttled to the sidelines with a bag over our heads! This could be my last year as an AMA member unless I see some progress. Yeah, I’m just a little bit mad!!!!! And yes, this is a supplement to the same thing I posted up above, just in case it was missed.

  44. The AMA. Eighty years in the making, destroyed in eighty weeks by inconsiderate, uncaring Drone operators. Only in America.

  45. What exactly do we mean by “FAA requiring models to meet design and production standards”? I assume that during AMA meetings with the FAA and government reps some explanation/definition of intent was discussed. For example, does meeting AMA guidelines on construction satisfy this requirement?

    1. The standards do not exist yet. The FAA is asked to create the standards within one year of the bill becoming law.

      1. I’m thinking the standard will be to include a GPS tracking device that will allow the aircraft to be operated in designated FAA approved airspace only, such as over 5 miles from airports, etc. The FAA will probably approve only
        a few super-expensive USA-made GPS tracker devises, and won’t approve any bargain Chinese versions. Maybe require transponders and even a flight recorder to help you fill out your flight log forms for your annual FAA audit.

  46. This is ridiculous. AMA management needs to take a page from the NRA. Politicize the Hell out
    of all of this. Publish the names of all in congress that favor these ridiculous provisions.
    Put in place a political action team nationally and locally and go AFTER all of the people in congress that are doing this to us. This is an election year so get organized and get cracking.
    Keep in mind that the NRA membership dumped their ineffective leaders 20 some years ago and now they are feared and respected in congress for their members clout. Get going guys, this is an election year.

  47. This is just becoming more interesting moment by moment. The FAA has now imposed even stricter laws for flying the dreaded drone or model aircraft. Model airplanes and helicopters have been around for 50 years or so. I don’t understand the focus on drones. An RC plane or helicopter can do the same thing as a drone and some RC turbine planes can reach speeds of 200 mph. Why was there no regulation prior to using the proper term, quadcopters? It is getting to the point where a person can buy an AKA 47 easier than getting permission to fly a model aircraft. And there are no restrictions on shooting an AKA 47 or any other weapon within a five mile radius of an airport. Now if a terrorist really wants to take down a plane, is he going to use a drone (there is that dreaded word again), model airplane or a semi-automatic weapon? IMHO, this is all a smoke screen for a much bigger problem than we are not aware of. Maybe I will take up kite flying, which as far as I know has not been restricted yet. Before all this “droneaphobia” started, pilots would report these incidents as UFO’s or more probably not report them at all for fear of being labeled. Now every encounter with something unknown is one of those damn drones even if there is no objective evidence of its remains.

  48. Typical government over reach. I’ve been in the hobby for 25 yrs. I’ve flown everything from 1/2 A to 50% scale and currently completing a 66%cub.
    You have let your government decided what your kids eat for lunch and constructive criticism become hate speech. At some point you must clean house and get rid of the politicians and vote TRUMP!

  49. man when you have kelly ripa and michael strahan telling everyone on tv that operators should have licenses and putting a scare in people that dont know anything about. Now the ama has to get on it to combat it yes there are the idiots that are creating the problem

  50. The big problem is the quad-copter drones.

    Traditional planes require great skill to fly. You have to study before you fly. You need to respect the rules of aviation.

    The quad-copter drones and things like them can be flown by a 2-year-old. They are so easy to fly. You don’t need any study, don’t need any rules to respect.

    Traditional r/c planes and helicopters should be protected by the government. The quad-copter drones should be banned.

  51. They can have my transmitter when they pry it out of my cold dead hands.

  52. The club that I fly at has has been at the same location since 1968 (48years) 20 year ago a airport was built with-in 5 miles,now we may lose the use of our club site.

    If our membership is 188,000 , then look at the members response .
    30100 divided by 188,000 = percent 16% . Pretty poor response . We may not get the protection that model aviation deserves.I hope that future requests don’t meet with a bunch of people sitting on their hands.

  53. It’s all unenforceable BS. The FAA doesn’t have enough people or money to do anything. The proposed rule says IF you are flying within 5 miles of an airport you have to call and let them know you are there. They will get tired of all those calls, that’s for sure. Will they run out to watch you fly for a few minutes? They’ll get tired of that pretty quickly.

    I have three multi-rotors and only fly them at sanctioned fields. I spend more time changing batteries and props than actual flying. Catch me if you can, but the likelihood will be that i am on the ground. Will possession be a problem? And yes, i do have a license plate on all of them.

    The one thing you can count on when dealing with Washington is that someone will get screwed – every day of the year. We should throw the entire bunch out and start over.

  54. To all the idiots blaming multi rotor aircraft, I have some news for you. This has nothing to do with whether an airplane has 1 propeller or 8. It has everything to do with a draconian Govt that is eroding your rights away one piece at a time. They are trying to steal guns, let thousands of terrorists into our country, destroy our economy, and our way of life. Wake the F up people!!!! Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while. I’m absolutely baffled why we continue to believe our Govt is still a legitimate ruling body. You all must be dumb as a box of rocks to continue the charade. Stop giving these feds any power over us. Local LEO’S, kick any fed out of town when they try to enforce their draconian bs,problem solved.

  55. This is what happens when we trust our elected officals in DC to do something. They are the biggest bunch of pudknockers from the congress to the White House. Thanks AMA for not separating model aircraft from Quadcopters .Quit embracing the things and work for us. The trouble makers are not AMA Members and don’t want to be so quit blowing air up their skirts to try to snag them. Its seems like the senate needs to understand what the hell a model airplane really is. Needs to be certified by the FAA! What a fu@#$%^ Joke

  56. I thank the AMA for what they are doing. For all the naysayers posting here, so far they have done all they can at this point. While a bill is introduced, there is not much that can be done other than talking with the legislators (and their staffs) and trying to get them to listen.

    The next step was when the AMA asked us all to contact the legislators. More than 30,000 letters were sent, which sounds good until you realize that we have 188,000 members. That is low participation. But the 188,000 members also means we are a very small community in the US, as if we did not know this. The NRA is a very powerful organization in D.C> because they have 5,000,000 members (25 times our size) and the legislators get swamped with letters and calls when they request action from their members.

    I see only one thing left to do to preserve our hobby. We keep trying to modify the bill, but when it is signed and takes effect, we need to file a lawsuit to stop the bill. We have to argue that the bill is unconstitutional because the government has no authority to regulate us. We are not engaged in interstate commerce when we fly our models. We do not affect interstate commerce with our models (OK, that does let them get away with saying we can be a distance from an airport).

    I will volunteer to be a named plaintiff in this lawsuit if necessary. My seven year old granddaughter is interested in flying and I want to pass on to her and my other grandchildren this hobby. I will do what I can to do so and not have them smothered with federal regulations that make no sense.

    1. Steve,

      Sadly, I think that even if all 180,000 sent letters, many of those are youth members who don’t vote anyway. Additionally, that 180,000 would be diluted among the several states – which means there’s not enough in any one state to even hope to sway an election.

      Form letters don’t do much good unless they come from an organization with millions of members who vote the issue – and who have a history of swaying elections.

  57. I thought I lived in the USA but now I am beginning to wonder. No one seams to have any common sense anymore.

  58. , I guess I’m a burden now.
    I know it is frustrating to have so much focus on our hobby, because of a few idiots Who do not know how to behave safely. So here’s the question of the day. Two middle-aged gentleman between 50 and 60 years old go to the flying field. Both are AMA members and also members in good standing at the local flying field. I’m one of them. I pull out my 1600 g quad copter with return to launch and geo-fence programmed. The other gentleman is pulling out of his ten foot trailer a 15 kg Rc jet capable of doing 200 mph. You would think we have nothing in common. Yet we both scratch build Our flying contraptions with great care and fun building a craft which we could get airborne. Yes it is right ,drones,quad copters, tri copters, and irresponsible owners put focus on our hobby. My concern is that some people do not understand that this hobby is not “wings only”. I remember when the first helicopters showed up at our flying field in Germany. Very similar reactions. I used to fly wings but I really like my multi rotors. So, Will I get confronted by a plane owner because he thinks I’m the cause of all those problems? Really, me, the 55 year old guy who only flys his craft at the local field? I certainly hope this will not put a rift between rotors and wings! Oh by the way, I did see a witch on a broomstick at a field, no wings, no rotors. Can’t wait to see a discussion about that!

  59. So does anyone have any idea what the new FAA design and production standards actually are? are they listed somewhere or have they not been announced?

    1. The standards do not exist. The Senate tasks the FAA to create the standards within one year.

  60. If you want to get back to the way it used to be vote the dumb a-ses out of office and elect Donald Trump.

  61. 2124, and all the regulations within, don’t seem to apply to us. There is, however, a catch at the end.

    “(g) Prohibition.–It shall be unlawful for any person to
    introduce or deliver for introduction into interstate
    commerce any unmanned aircraft system manufactured after the
    date that the Administrator adopts consensus safety standards
    under this section,

    [[Page S1923]]

    unless the manufacturer has received approval under
    subsection (d) for that make and model of unmanned aircraft
    “(h) Exclusions.–This section shall not apply to unmanned
    aircraft systems that are not capable of navigating beyond
    the visual line of sight of the operator through advanced
    flight systems and technology, unless the Administrator
    determines that is necessary to ensure safety of the

  62. It looks like it’s time to separate model airplanes from multi rotor drones. We may even have to pass a rule against FPV. I think AMAs rules covering FPV are good and I would like to get into it some day but not at the expense of our hobby!

  63. Chad,
    Where do we go to find the latest version of the Senate language? Was Senator Inhofe’s amendment rejected in its entirety or was it modified? Also, can you explain a bit what other opportunities there will be to impact this?


    1. We are working to find the latest version that can be publicly accessible. We will still support the House bill which protect and enhances the Special Rule. Then both bills go to another committee with another round of revisions and votes. We encourage members to engage Congress throughout all of these steps, but may mobilize our members again as the bill goes to the conference committee. Here is an image that helps demonstrate the workflow

        1. Thanks for posting that Chad. Several versions floating around. Nice to have “THE” version that counts.

  64. I wrote both senators from Missouri and didn’t expect much back. I never heard from Blunt, who as a Republican I expected more from. I did get a reply from the idiot McCaskill, but it was a typical education on the FAA. Typical democrat mum on jumbo.

  65. What was the count of the senators that voted guess it who were thing ? It would certainly help those of us who are passionate about our hobby to know who we need to keep putting pressure on !

  66. It is typically ludicrous of the people who call themselves U.S. Senators to say that I have to pass a special test to fly my model aircraft which I have been flying safe and responsibly for the last 40 plus years but yet you have top pass NOTHING to become a U.S. Senator. The current crowd of money mongers in our government are only regulating the enjoyment of Radio Control modeling because the mega corporations like Google and Amazon want to control ALL THE AIRSPACE below 500 feet AGL for their drone delivery fiascos and a simple contribution to senator scandals war chest will certainly sway the vote away from the hobbyists. It is a shame that as we are enjoying the best technology that has ever been at our disposal as hobbyist our government is too clouded by big money to see what they are doing.

  67. So much for AMA I will still be flying my drones and airplane just like I have been doing for over 50 yr
    I fly with aircraft in my sight even tho the drones can travel over 5 miles I still wont it in my sight which means it will be no more than 50-100 high at any time if it gets hit the airplane unless it is a crop duster was too low
    By the way I am also am a pilot too and worry more about birds than a model
    Guess the Gov needs to get busy and get all those pesky birds reg. Good luck collecting al those fees Its ALL about money

  68. Sad state of affairs. And to think this happened due to a few radicalized individuals is sad..

  69. “new FAA design and production standards”

    How about posting those too, I would like to know what they expect prior to getting “outraged”.

    1. The FAA design and production standards have not been identified yet. The Senate tasks the FAA to create the standards within one year.

  70. Please let me say first, forgive any misspelling for I am writing this letter out of anger. I have since my first control line airplane followed a common sense approach to flying my model aircraft. I just a few years ago got back into the hobby after a short time out of it. I joined the AMA to be part of the RC community and for the insurance. You can never tell what will happen. I own at least one of each type of aircraft (airplane, heli, glider, quad, hexa and octo). I have watched this hobby turn from an enjoyable pastime to a government-controlled nightmare. I have gone out and earned my HAM license, registered with the AMA, registered with the FAA all so I can still try to enjoy a hobby that I love to do. I do FPV, scale flying,heli & airplane stunts. I can say it is not the type of aircraft that is the problem but, the type of people who have access to certain types of equipment (long range transmitters and high powered video transmitters) that are the problem. These same people will despite the governments best efforts to control the problem, will only continue to keep flying without registering or, flying with common sense. It will only continue to make it harder on the members who follow the rules and regulations. I can honestly say that if any more bureaucratic BS is imposed on the members that follow the rules, I as well as many others will just say to hell with it and give up the hobby. I hate to see it come to that but that outcome is on the horizon. The government wants to police and control the ones who are not the problem while costing members an arm and a leg. I feel the problem can be corrected without all of this BS if the users of these two items (long range transmitter and high powered video transmitters) are required to be permitted to have these items. I broadcast my HAM id number through my video transmitter signal as well as have both AMA and FAA numbers on any of my aircraft I have for video. I am out in the open with all my identification just to be legal so I can fly on my own private property. There is no way in HELL I could afford that ridiculously high fine the government would fine me with if I didn’t. The people who don’t register or have any way to identify their aircraft to them are the problem and they will continue to do so from the dark shadows until they are caught. I just hope that the right people get involved soon before it is too late for all of use.

  71. Agree with Jerry and since my first post was not approved for apparently no reason at all, I will post again. The AMA needs to separate themselves from the drone mess. When was the last time you heard of a guy flying his quarter scale J3 to close to NYC airspace? NEVER! It just doesn’t happen. I have been an AMA member for 16 years and I have never ever once seen anyone in the community act as iresponsible as some of the drone owners. Someone needs to paint a better picture of the whole scenario before it really is to late. If some of the drone community does not want to follow the rules, let them fend for themselves.

  72. Rules are one thing, how does FAA intend to enforce them? Stake out our flying fields looking for R/Cs flying higher than 400 feet? While non-members continue to fly unsafely around commercial airports using quadcopter purchased at the local big box store?

  73. ladies and gentlemen. this is a stupid rule i ever heard in my life, why in a hell the faas don’t want us to build ziroli planes anymore, like if i build my plane and the Faas have to check them out to get inspect it and take a class about it, are the AMA’S AND FAAS ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND. That don’t make no sense.this is why them FAAS don’t understand none of them. people work so hard building remote control airplanes. and it takes 5-10 years to finish it. and is a lot of work come on man. what the FAAS thinking. i knew it was about to go down. we are not going to have that negative vibes. about this no more. that new rules has to go. this is pissing me off right here. ALL FAAS NEEDS TO GO TO HELL. AND ALL FAAS NEEDS TO BE SUED. THIS WILL BE A BIG LOSS SUED RIGHT THERE. everyone. continued to build Zirolis and fly them all you want. the governments needs to go to hell. they can do it what they want. but I’m not gonna let FAAS push me around, but if they did. they all will be sued. and they will have a another war in Houston. I’m not playing no more and not going down with out of fight. the the AMA’s should never work with FAAS, they all no good, and god will not all of the FAAS, let me tell you something. i been flying remote control airplanes for 16 years when i was 13 years old, i grew up with airplanes and helicopters. i will not follow the BS, no more changing the new rules. new rules suck. and i will not let nobody take that away from me. flying remote control airplanes and helicopters, remote control jets are way better then going to stupid strip club. FAAS, NO, MORE, NEGATIVE RULES. EVERYTHING YOU SAID ON THERE WAS A LIE. THE DEVILS IS A LIE. THE FAAS ARE THE SATEN. ARE WE GONNA BE RACING CAR FOR REMOTE CONTROL AIRPLANE, OR MOTORCYCLE FOR PLANE, OR YOU JUST MAKINGS ANOTHER EXCUSES PLUS, CHANGING THE NEW RULES AGAIN, WHAT DO YOU THINK. IMA SAY IT AGAIN, ARE WE RACING OR YOU JUST WANNA LET THE NUMBER 5 BEAT YOU. I REGISTERED EVERY THING ON MY 16TH YEAR ANNIVERSARY ON JANUARY 31ST 2016. THEY JUST WANT MORE MONEY OUT OF ALL OF US. IM NOT GONNA HAVE THAT. THATS ALL I GOT. FAAS. YOU DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT REMOTE CONTROL AIRPLANES. IM THE ONLY ONE KNOWS HOW TO OPERATED THEM ALL. AND I WILL BE MAKING $ 150,000.00 CASH EVERY YEAR. THATS WHAT I WANT. NO MORE CHANGING NEW RUELS. THIS HOBBY IS ALL I HAVE. I DON’T HAVE NOTING ELES, I PICK THE RIGHT HOBBY WHEN I WAS 13. NOW YOU TRYING TO TAKE THAT AWAY FROM THE KIDS. THAT AIN’T GONNA WORK. NOT COOL. YOU NEED TO TAKE THAT BACK WHAT YOU SAID RIGHT NOW. I DON’T CARE WHAT ELES YOU SAY. THAT IS THE STUPID RULE I EVER HEARD. ALL THE FAA’S DOING IS RUIN EVERYBODY FUN INCLUDING ME. NOT COOL. ALL THE FAAS JUST HATING ON US. ALL THEY DO IS CALLING ARE AIRPLANES AND HELICOPTERS AND JETS ARE BAD NAMES. YOU THINK THERE TOYS, THEY ARE NOT TOYS ANYMORE. YOU THINK WE DID THIS. BUT NO IS THEM OTHER PEOPLE, THERY THE ONE FLYING DRONES SPYING IN PEOPLES HOUSES AND YOU BLAMING A GOOD PILOTS. IS THEM BAD PILOTS DOING ALL OF THIS, NOT THE GOOD PILOTS. IS THEM BAD PEOPLE IN THIS WORLD DOING THIS. IT DONT MAKE NO SENCES. WE ARE THE GOOD RC PILOTS IN HOUSTON. I FLY MY PLANE AND STAY UP BELOW 400FT AND THATS IT. IM WAY PASS ALL OF THIS RULES BECAUSE I BEEN FLYING REMOTE CONTROL AIRPLANES FOR 16 YEARS. AND I BEEN FLYING REMOTE CONTROL HELICOPTERS FOR 14 YEARS. I USE TO FLY PLANES ON A REAL FLIGHT SIMULATOR WHEN I WAS 14 YEARS OLD. AND TOOK ME AWAY TO LEARN HOW TO FLY A REMOTE CONTROL AIRPLANE. I START OUT WITH MY FIRST TRAINER AIRPLANE WHEN I WAS 13. I USE TO HAVE A BRAND NEW 2000, HOBBICO SUPERSTAR 40 SELECT AIRPLANE, I START IN JANUARY 31ST 2000. 16 YEARS AGO. ONE OF THIS DAYS, THE FAA’S WILL UNDERSTAND. HAVE A GOOD DAY.

  74. For the sake of good old fashioned American modeling I hope this comes to a sensible ending, because right now it sure looks bad for the entire modeling and hobby industry.
    Maybe some of the deep pockets manufacturers can step up and start lobbying the right people,

  75. I fly sailplanes as well as fixed wing powered planes. If it comes to the point that the government is enforcing a 400 foot ceiling and bans home built model airplanes I will no longer fly. I’ve built my own since the only ARFS were Cox control line planes. Although I own a few ARFs, all purchased or traded for as used planes, I have no interest in flying only factory built airplanes. I’ve restored a few full sized airplanes under the supervision of in IA A&P and have good building skills. Let’s fight to keep traditional aeromodelling alive. It may be a waste of effort but I’m writing both of my senators tonight, then going out to finish the restoration of my 25+ year old Kadet Senior.

  76. It is ridicules that the AMA, who represents it’s members and we are paying for them, are unable to do their job. The fact that they have allowed the government and the FAA to dictate to the people who have built, designed and created new models that they have built and flow safely since the Wright Brothers first flew is ludicrous. I am 80 years old and have been building and flying since I was 10. I work with kids showing them how to build a successful model from a kit. Now the government will step in and say it isn’t fit to fly?

  77. Well for a country that fights for others freedom this is a nice way of treating your citizens 🙁

  78. Not just that, it requires that the electronics be “tamper proof” in order to stop end users from disabling mandatory geofencing. This means models will no longer be user serviceable.

    No more open source hardware and software, all of our current FBl controllers will have to be recalled and where that is no possible replaced. You’ll have to use FAA certified servos and motors.

    I expect that an RTF 700 will probably run $15,000 or more. And if you crash it you’ll have to have an FAA certified mechanic repair it with FAA certified parts, submit a log of the repairs done and have an FAA inspector approve it as flight ready.

  79. Also, I will no longer support AMA in any capacity. You have failed the community completely. You are done, the hobby is done, end of story. Your “legal” team has proven to be completely useless, laughable and a complete joke. The FAA is laughing at you, the politicians are laughing at you, and now I’m laughing at you as well. Watch your membership fall to maybe a few thousand people next year. The modelers money would be better spent with a real legal team, not one that just caves to the FAA’s demands at every turn. You say you’ve retained valuable provisions of Section 336???? How? If 336 can’t be preserved in entirety, it’s of absolutely no use whatsoever. How can you claim any sort of victory when the FAA is clearly the new governing body of model aviation….PERIOD! Doesn’t mean much to say it will be run by a CBO when you won’t be able to make any of the rules. If you can’t fly anything you build yourself and the FAA is allowed to place draconian legislation on the rest, what is the point of the hobby? That was the whole point of the hobby in the first place!! You people are beyond stupid!! It’s like saying, “Well he was shot 5 times in the chest, but we managed to take one of the bullets out of the gun beforehand, preventing him from being shot 6 times”. You guys are USELESS!!!.

  80. I was watching Fox news with two “experts” on. They were making arguments for a full ban on all RC Aircraft. “Safety is our top concern”, blah, blah, blah. This incident at Heathrow is being used to drum up fear and support for more regulations. America the land of the free! Not any more.

  81. Very disappointed with our Senators… but they probably have their pockets lined by the FAA.
    We need to remember this when Re-Election comes around… So what’s next those who have RC land vehicles registering with their state DMV? or those who operate RC boats having to register with the Coast Guard?…. These may sound very stupid but that what this is with the FAA.
    The problem are the drones and yes I have one but since I am also an RC pilot I still go by the rules of the flying field and that is where I fly my drone.
    Unfortunately the AMA rules are not listed in the manual of a drone like it is when you purchase a plane either online or at the Hobby Shop…. Drone manufactures need to have these rules posted in their instructions.

  82. I see lots of misdirected complaints on the latest Senate Bill, seems a little late for that.
    The AMA sent all members a request to contact their Senators requesting support for the Amendment proposed by Senator Inofe. The amendment contained the language needed to protect our rights to fly models we scratch build as well as many other items that would have exempted us from many of the new idiotic requirements in the Bill. It got passed WITHOUT THE NEEDED AMENDMENTS
    SO now the complaints start! If you want to complain look at what happened. The AMA sent out the request for us to contact our federal officials. They made it SOOO easy, clicking th link after you had filled in your zip code, sent automatic emails directly to your senators. How much easier could they have made it?
    HERE’S THE SAD PART! Of the 188,000 members, only 31,000 (16%) BOTHERED TO CONTACT OUR SENATORS. So before we complain too much, it looks to me like we, the membership let it happen!
    Were you one of the ones that didn’t send the mail?

    1. Ummm, you could sent our “elected” (and I use that term loosely) 500,000 letters and the truth is, they won’t read a single one. This Govt is not responsive to the will of the people, hasn’t been for a long time. They only do what their masters tell them to, end of story. Sad it’s come to this.

  83. I told my club from the outset that they should not get in bed with the FAA. These c’suckers are interested in only ONE thing: justifying their existence. I have been a real pilot, aircraft mechanic, and aircraft inspector for over 30 years. My dealings with the FAA have never been a good experience. There is no way they can enforce this atrocity especially if the hobbyists refuse to register and PAY them. They don’t have the personnel to enforce this, and the money they take in will not support enough inspectors with their grossly inflated salaries. AND THEY HAVE BETTER THINGS TO DO! If you register and pay, you are only cutting you own throat. This will be the end of our hobby. Sell you planes, you say? To whom?

  84. What exactly is still in the bill that is detrimental to the hobby? It would be good to have specifics to discuss in correspondence to our “representatives”.

    1. There are quite a few steps before this bill becomes law. We have a very favorable House bill that supports and expands the Special Rule for Model Aircraft. Then the two versions go to another committee for another round of revisions and votes.

      Assuming the Senate bill bypasses all these steps and becomes law, which it cannot, here are few areas of concern.

      1) All modelers will have to take and pass an online flight test.
      2) Flying sites within five miles of an airport must seek permission from the airport(s). Current law only requires operators to notify the airports.
      3) Manufacturers and most likely scratch builders/kit basher builders will have to comply with FAA standards. These standards or tests have not been identified yet.
      4) Non AMA members must stay below 400-feet. We have exempted AMA members from this provision through a manager’s amendment and are confirming that is still in place.

      1. “We have exempted AMA members….”

        I thought you said once that AMA would not use the law to compel membership?

        Now it seems that you’ve worked with Thune to do just that – namely if you want to fly above 400, you have to be a member?

  85. Chad,
    There are so many links out there to the Senate bill. Which is the correct, most official, up-to-the-moment bill that you based your report on? Is the one that actually went forward published? I’ve searched, Thomas, Popvox and don’t see anything on them that says PASSED.



  86. Keep building and flying your planes, keep having fun.
    Just use common sense and forget this FAA nonsense……..

    1. Nonsense is exactly right. However, ask yourself this question; if these people were sane they would know the meaning of that word and their actions. Since they don’t – we have nonsense.

  87. Hello. I have been watching this silly mess develop and progress into even more silliness. I have been an AMA member since 1962 and am considering not renewing next year. I will design,build,and safely fly model aircraft-especially sailplanes when I wish to. I have a large piece of property and access to several hundred acres of farmland next to my home so I don’t really care what the FAA tries to do or what rules they come up with. I will not register my models and I challenge them to come mess with me. I have a top government clearance and do not exist on the grid. The FAA cannot even inspect or regulate full-scale aircraft so where are they going to get the agents to enforce this group of rules? There have always been idiots who do unsafe things with models and there will always be some-rules are for the people who follow them-not people who don’t care. I see people texting on their phones every day even though there are laws forbidding it and think it is far more important for our law enforcement officers to prevent this type of unsafe behavior than to harass some kid or father and son trying to do something worthwhile. I cannot see a police officer leaving a lucrative speed trap or DUI checkpoint to go bother a kid flying a model in a nearby field. As far as Obama goes he has reached the pinnacle of violating the constitution which he swore to uphold, he CANNOT make a law-he can only submit a bill or veto a bill . He is not yet king and will never be. He does is not worthy of my respect nor loyalty-I wasn’t dumb enough to vote for him either time. Also, politicians need to be told by all of their constituents that they are there to SERVE the public. They are not royalty and do not have the duty to serve the special interest groups who put them in office. They are not there to do what they want and then collect a pension from the very people they don’t really care about. Lastly-the AMA should have be been on top of this mess as soon as it surfaced not bowing to some group of burocrats demands. Just tell them no. The FAA cannot locate all of us and better have all of their ducks lined up before some lawyer makes a big name for himself by knocking them down to size. I will personally donate to the defense fund for the first person the FAA pursues with fines etc concerning a model aircraft which is being flown safely . Anyways, thats my dollars’ worth. Bother some real criminals such as drug dealers and terrorists. Lastly-I don’t have a problem with drones or multirotors-I own a micro quad and enjoy watching my granddaughter fly it. It is the job of the drone enthusiasts to weed out the troublemakers among them-they are not all idiots-only a very small group of them . I have personally voted in the past to remove fellow club memberswho were doing unsafe and stupid things. Bob M..

    1. “Sensibly written with nodought a great deal of restraint. You nailed it on all points.
      I will most likely continue to fly but I doubt I’ll be a member after renewal comes around.
      I just don’t have the sense of “belonging” to academy as I once did. I don’t have the feeling
      That the AMA has or will have the solution to mitigate the damage done by their continued pandering
      to the advertising dollar provided by foreign manufactures. If the Academy were truly interested in
      what the membership thought they would have polled us for our opinion regarding what is on the table.
      That, IMHO is how a community based organization should act. One that truly cares about what its members
      think. They broke it let them fix it. If they can’t , hire someone who can.
      TJ EWING AMA 8855

      1. By the war Budreau. I think your censoring more than your moderating.
        TJ EWING

  88. Question: Has anyone put a dollar amount to the impact of a mass defection from the hobby? I would think that that number could be “spun” to a senator’s district and how much they are gutting a well established hobby as a means to get their attention.

  89. The AMA from the very beginning KNEW the drones were the future to its bank accounts & I am of the FIRM belief there is personal monetary gains involved as well. AMA has NOT IMO stood for the many members who have made this hobby what it is today. Millions of modelers have joined the AMA because that was the rule & what did we get in return? A magazine full of advertises that “used” to be full of great building articles & “how to” chapters. The insurance wasn’t worth much as i know from first hand experience. So what do we get now? A magazine FULL of DRONES that in no way resembles a “true” airplane or helicopter along with electric models. NOTHING at all about scratch building,kit building, how to articles or anything that pertains to what “real model aircraft” is all about. The AMA IMO is selling out its members due to the “craze” of drones & in the meantime the real modelers are facing a hobby that will become full of government regulations & oversight. Its a real shame IMO the dedicated faithful modelers are being cast aside for something that is nothing more than a fad & the real modelers are getting screwed in the process. Thanks AMA.

  90. So, if the design of my quadcopter has to be compliant with the “new / amended” regulations, what was the point of registration? All registration does is give the Government a way to track and regulate people with pinpoint accuracy, thanks to the data that was entered at registration.

    If the amendments go through, and hobbyist quadcopters are no longer considered airworthy, does that mean the Government is entitled to refund all of us that registered?

    And as it has been said many, many times before, people that have bad intentions are not going to bother to register, leaving all of us who complied, and paid, to pay the price of giving up a hobby we take a responsible pride in.

  91. This basically will put an end to kit building and will kill the companies that produce kits, plans for kits, and all that related to kit building all thanks to our worthless Congress.
    You can bet your bottom dollar that if RC flying/building were something that most of Congress took part in, this bill wouldn’t have seen the light of day. That’s all they are concerned about anymore, themselves and how they can fatten their off shore accounts.

  92. Has AMA enlisted the help, especially financially, from some of the big players that stand to lose? Hobbico, Horizon Hobby, and many of the other distributors/importers? We have yet to hear anything from them yet they will be greatly impacted to the point of possibly going out of business. I doubt if they can afford to certify a model aircraft and sell it at a price point the average modeler can afford and still stay in business. It about time everybody at the commercial/distributor level who has a stake in the hobby side pitch in with AMA and put forth the $$$ or attorneys to help lobby the House of Representatives before they too are completely bought off by special interests like Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart. We also need to start a letter writing campaign to not only our Congressmen, but others we suspect will be supportive of the hobby and try to enlist more assistance from them.

  93. First, I agree this is a troubling time for our hobby and the thought of losing my ability to enjoy flight in it’s many forms is frankly depressing. However to those of you laying the blame on Multirotors, take a breath it’s not the aircraft it’s the operator. As has been pointed out by others here the “offenders” aren’t likely to abide by the rules, and that is the root of the problem; not the type of aircraft being flown.
    I remember not too long ago when lipo battery technology made electric flight more feasible, small 450 size helicopters became very popular. Cries went up from long time flyers about what a “nuisance” these helicopters were. Sound familiar?
    As an AMA member for over 25 years I have flown and owned everything from fixed wing glow traniers, the above mentioned electric 450 helicopter, gps enabled waypoint capable 8′ wingspan motor gliders, GoPro equipped 5lb Y6 mulitorotor, and 250 sized quads; all of which I fly at my local AMA club field. Out of respect for others comfort level when it comes to mixed flying, I don’t fly my multirotors or helicopters with their fixed wing counterparts. Some people don’t like to fly their glow planes with quiet electric planes because they can’t hear them. Likewise my fellow flyers also show me the courtesy of not flying their fixed wing while I’m flying my multirotors or helicopter.
    Times change and attitudes must change along with them. Don’t be so closed and narrow minded when it comes to defining what this hobby is about.

  94. The hell with the government, and this country. I’m going to continue doing what I’ve been doing all along – whatever I want. And I’m not the only one. Good luck enforcing this load of crap.

    Multi-rotors should be the only aircraft subject to these rediculous overreaching, red white and blue dildo-ish rules they are trying to screw us all with.


  95. As I sit here and read all the comments about how multirotors are ruining the hobby, I and little disheartened because for a people that are part of a community based organization I sure am reading a lot of hate. I got started almost 17 years ago and currently fly planes, helis, and yes multirotors too. In my years I have seen plenty of people flying planes dangerously off of side streets in neighborhoods and over large groups of people, then and even now it was not the aircraft that was the problem it was the people flying the craft that were the problem and no amount of regulation is going to stop the idiots from doing what they want. People have blamed fpv flying as well since all this started, but fpv is nothing new and I even had club members that were doing it a decade ago. So hate if you want but the idiots are in every aspect of the hobby, multis have just grown exponentially which make them stand out more.

  96. Why does this remind me of the gun ban bureaucrats in congress wanting us to register our guns? They want to pass more and more useless laws. They want to ban certain magazines, ammo and guns. We all know that criminals and those who wish to do bad things do not pay any attention to laws. Having my name and FAA registration number in my airplane will do what? If I have a fly-away, perhaps I’ll get a call and get my plane back or if the plane causes property damage for sure I’ll get a call. What business is all this to the FAA as long as I fly out of full scale airplane airspace? What business is it of the government what I’m doing at all? Perhaps this is just like the first step in banning guns, registration. Then comes fines, penalties, confiscation and maybe jail. I have been building and flying airplanes for over 65 years with no problems. Now I have to have a check out by an FAA examiner of an airplane I designed and built? I have to pass an FAA safety test? This is nuts! Another example of big government out of control!

  97. You can tell this is an election year! All of the bureaucrats are coming out of the woodwork and doing everything they can to stay in office. They seem to forget how they got there! I’ve been flying model planes longer than they have been in office and have never had an incident or posed a threat to the public, including fling in the AMA Nationals in 1977.
    The real problem is people buying ‘drones’ and not using their heads while flying them. A good example is the British Airways aircraft that collided with a ‘drone’ while on final at Heathrow Airport (not a model airplane). The new regulation of having a ‘scratch-built model’ having to be inspected by the FAA before its first flight has gone beyond reason. How many FAA Inspectors are going to be hired to go to EVERY modeler’s home in America to inspect their projects? This is another wild example of a government that could care less about its citizens. It only cares about how much power it has over its citizens, which actually sounds like a dictatorship. What they are doing, is destroying a hobby that has been around since the beginning of aviation and creating total resentment toward the government. How many of these so-called Representatives of the American People have gone out and actually attended an AMA aviation event? Some of these ‘drone geeks’ are the real problem by having no regard for what is ‘safe flying’. They are the ones the FAA needs to go after, not the modelers that abide by the safety rules and enjoy building and flying model airplanes. How many incidents of near-misses or collisions between model airplanes and full-size airplanes can the FAA show documentation on, compared to the number of ‘incidents’ between ‘drones’ and full-size aircraft? That should be a matter of public record, but we don’t hear anything about it.

  98. Maybe if the AMA were more focused on preserving the hobby as a whole and less focused on establishing themselves as a regulatory agency, this wouldn’t be as big of a problem.

    Don’t think you’ve fooled everyone. This latest amendment introduces more language that increases the AMA’s power over non-members than it does restore rights for existing ones.

    For example:

    [The FAA shall not regulate model aircraft if…] …the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines and within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization;

    …the operator has passed an aeronautical knowledge and safety test administered by the Federal Aviation Administration online for the operation of unmanned aircraft systems subject to the requirements of section 44809 or developed and administered by the community-based organization and maintains proof of test passage to be made available to the Administrator or law enforcement upon request.

    The AMA is doing nothing to help those that aren’t paying dues, and doing everything they can to keep them from flying at all. I can’t be the only one that sees this. It’s no lie the AMA is resistant to any new technology. Look how long it took to adapt anything that isn’t balsa and glow, and even then there’s a reluctance.

    The AMA only represents themselves. Take a step back and look at the facts. All of the comments on this article are curated and filtered. If this makes it up at all I’d be astounded.

    1. This is not new language and is a carry over from the Section 336 in the FAA Modernization and Reform Act passed in 2012. On some level, Congress recognizes that there are safe and responsible modelers and Congress is willing to provide some exemptions. This section acknowledges modelers who abide by a safety program should be exempt from additional regulations.

  99. Can someone explain in detail what the requirements would be for “scratch building” model aircraft? It is mentioned in a manner to scare, but there is little information. Are we talking about adequate control redundancy? structural requirements? Sense and avoidance? Radio identification / Beacons? Or we just highlighting some vague language to get us all riled up?

    I like a little more specifics. Point me to a section please.

    And as a ham operator its not terribly unreasonable to take a one time test to demonstrate an understanding of the rules. I really don’t find that a burden. But I would find submitting my scratch built model to type acceptance a nuance and detrimental burden. Also to be honest it would be impractical and unenforceable.

    1. It looks like the language causing fear about type acceptance is only applied to UAS vehicles. there is a large section that commissions a committee to put together a set of standards to govern the construction of UAS. Which has many people involved in that process.

      But there is a special section (44808) page 85 dedicated to defining model aircraft in which many considerations are made. I think it reads that new regulations for unmanned aircraft can’t be applied to model aircraft if:

      1. Aircraft is flown for hobby/recreational use
      2. aircraft is operated in accordance with a community based set of safety guidelines
      3. not flown beyond visual line of sight [interesting, puts limits on FPV]
      4. aircraft doesn’t interfere with and gives way to manned aircraft
      5. When flown within 5 miles of an airport the operator provides prior notice and receives approval. For permanent locations within 5 miles airport and site should have a mutually agreed operating procedure.
      6. aircraft can fly from surface to 400 feet (no more sail planes i suppose)
      7. Operator has passed a knowledge and safety test administered by FAA. – [ In my opinion the test is not the problem it is who administers the test. In the Ham world the community based organization administers the test and the FCC certifies the test score. Helpful to keep a check and balance, Prevents some Administrator abusing power to kill the hobby]

      I am thinking it doesn’t look that bad. We have to take a test, and there may be some work to hammer out the ambiguity of model aircraft having to conform with safety standards that could act like “type” certification. However i do not think its the intent for the bill to make us line up with our scratch built aircraft and certify.

      I am trying to remain calm and stay positive.

      One is I think we just need to clarify the ambiguity

  100. As usual a few people always screw it up for everyone! Its a sad thing that this fear mongering has made its way into politics. I look for it to be the end of the RC hobby and the AMA.

  101. I just received a Tower Hobbies catalog today and the 1st ten pages were nothing but Quad copters. Guess we see where their interest lies. Money in their pockets. Last summer signed up for the two year plan so I guess I will wait ad see what happens. Probably won’t renew in 2018. Will just go underground and fly illegally. Already have a place to fly. If this bill passes that will be the end of our club because we fly off of an airport.

  102. I guess all of the RC Kits I have been hoarding just devalued. Maybe I will just write RTF on them and the inspectors will never know… I wonder if they will have annuals? Wont add retracts because that really adds to the cost. I really am going to miss this hobby. Maybe Canada would welcome us.

  103. Maybe model rockets are safer since they dont have any control and certainly exceed 400 feet. Will only take a couple of idiots to let one loose around an airport or mount a pistol to it and they will be gone also.

  104. The entire system and subsystems of governance in the USA are corrupt and no longer serve the majority of citizens.

    As for the FAA, their arrogant and literal dictatorial
    assault on model aviation is a perposterous attempt to divert attention away from their persistent ineptitude at the execution of the job that we the people pay them to do.

    Their core competency – to systematically send General Aviation back to the stone ages will now be surpassed by the grand achievement of orchestrating the extinction of model aviation. Which, by the way, has the most outstanding historical safety record of anything in the NAS!

    My advice to everyone is to forget this attack on our rights and privacy by yet another dysfunctional government puppet circus. Stop investing in “community organizations” which can do nothing to prolong the life of our beloved hobby, which is already in its death throes.

    Obey common sense safety practices, be a responsible cohabitant of the NAS and go out and enjoy flying the aircraft of your choice with a joyous heart. And if anyone attempts to deprive you of this right, be prepared to respond appropriately!

  105. Many interesting comments here. The comment above about drones ruining our hobby must have been posted from a retirement home – no disrespect intended – you are just way out of touch.

    We are living in a time where government is growing exponentially. Add bureaucrats to the system and they will find something to do with that time.

    This isn’t just about model aviation. Our freedoms are quickly eroding. Please consider that before you vote for Hillary. The next few Supreme Court appointments will dictate the next 50 years in this county.


  106. It ironic that at the bottom of the AMA’s website page announcing this link is an advertisement for a big Multi-rotor (drone).
    I am totally confused as to why the AMA wants to align us with Dronies. A drone is not a model of anything. AMA used to stand for the Academy of Model Aeronautics. Its drones that have snared us modelers into this mess….AMA.
    The Board seems to think that by trying to befriend the Multi-rotor operators, they will join up to add strength via numbers….clearly forgetting the story of the Scorpion and the Frog. A scorpion asks a frog to let him ride on the frogs back to cross a river. The frog says,”No way, if I do you’ll sting me!” The scorpion promises not to sting him, but upon arrival on the other side before climbing off the frogs back, the scorpion stings him with a fatal blow. The frog screamed out in pain,”Hey! You promised not to sting me if I helped you fight the FAA! The scorpion shrugged and said, “Sorry couldn’t help myself, I’m a scorpion after all.”
    And so here we modelers are, after 50+ years of respecting our hobby and our neighbors, we are up the creek and stung multiple rotors.

    1. Gordy (and the rest of the anti MR folks),

      Is there any evidence that if the AMA had denounced multi rotors that we wouldn’t be in this current regulation situation?


  107. Ban the sale of ‘drones’ without 5 hours of instruction by an AMA Member. Just like buying an Ultralight, 5 hours of flight instruction is required by the FAA (I used to work for a flight service (Director of Maintenance)that was also an Ultralight dealer). Ultralights are also limited to a set altitude and airspeed.
    It was a ‘drone geek’ that interfered with a Medevac helicopter trying to land at the scene of a serious wreck. It was also a ‘drone geek’ that interfered with a fire-bomber aircraft trying to help put out a huge brush fire. These are the meatheads that are the cause of us law-abiding model airplane fliers to be subjected to these ‘insane’ new rules, brought about by the so-called Representatives of the American citizens. They can also be voted out by the model airplane fliers in America.

  108. Well, it looks like I wasted my money on the 2 year AMA renewal! I guess it is time to take up golf again. Thanks for screwing us over by including the multi-rotors in with the model airplane community!

    1. Don’t be a fool, these idiots are not a part of the community, they won’t read your words, and you’re doing a disservice to everyone by promoting this infighting. The problem isn’t multicopters, it’s photographers that see them as a flying camera, not your fellow hobbyists.

  109. So the AMA is 180,000+ members strong but only 30,000+ managed to take a minute of their precious life to send a predrafted letter by the AMA to their senator(s). How come this doesn’t surprise me that only 16% of the membership seems to really give a dam. That same percentage figure seems to fall in line with the percentage of genuinely active members with in clubs all across the nation. If we lose our freedoms to this hobby it is partly because of the apathetic commitments of our membership to take a stand for your free rights and rebel against the overreach of our outlaw branches of government. I served for this country honorably back in the day when we were spit on for doing so, and for what? To have my civil liberties one by one being smashed right before my eyes and now after rediscovering the reborn child that lived within me because of the passion for flying model aircraft and they want that too. That same passion for modeling also helped drive me in overcoming and beating 5 different cancers in the past 10 years so to those that don’t have the passion to stand for something it will be but a short time till your time has no worth. I for one will not let the bureaucrats destroy my refound passion, joy and love for this hobby/sport and if by doing so against the wills of the FAA and our congressional representatives who don’t represent the will of the people anymore and force me to become an outlaw then so be it. I just know that the time I have left is gonna be done with a smile on my face and that smile is more often because of flying model airplanes like I was a young boy again. I got out of bed to day when someone else couldn’t so it was a great day and the FAA can go buggar off.

    1. If you have an organization with millions of members, who has a history of getting its folks out to vote consistently in numbers big enough to sway an election – then they pay attention to form letters.

      180,000 members spread around the country, many of those who are too young to vote, don’t sway elections.

  110. This is so much like the gun-control issue that it’s scary! Multi-copters are not the problem. It’s the few idiots that do stupid things with them. I got my start in this hobby just two years ago by learning on multi-copters. I flew them LOS responsibly for the purpose of teaching my fingers the necessary muscle-memory. Thanks to their forgiving flight characteristics, I was able to move on the helicopters and now to airplanes. I jointed the AMA and a local club. My club is mostly retired men, but they have all been very understanding! I usually fly airplanes with the club, but occasionally I pull out a helicopter or a quad and nobody complains. I really appreciate them for that. Please don’t hate the quad – hate the idiots who fly quads irresponsibly.

  111. If we agree “con” is the opposite of “pro” , what is the opposite of progress? That’s right, congress!

    What a shame when our country is so screwed up we decide to register, regulate, mandate, etc…. Toys!
    Sorry but the AMA has no voice and neither do we. I hate being so pessimistic but welcome to communism my friend. Do they regulate toys in Russia? China? What a joke we have become to the rest of the world!

  112. Dear AMA,
    I suggest that you get your folks into the mass media for some “Press Time” on MAJOR programs and networks! The effects of all this need to be explained to the general public. The AMA has a fiduciary responsibility to it’s members to make every effort to stand up and FIGHT, FIGHT, FIGHT, and FIGHT HARD! I will continue to support the AMA anyway I can as long as they can show some damn GRIT! LET’S GO DAMN IT!

  113. Why hasn’t the AMA been able to persuade congress or the FAA that AMA members who fly fixed wing aircraft at club flying fields are not the same people who are creating havoc with multirotor aircraft? Fixed wing R/C modelers have flown safely for decades. Why are we being thrown in with these irresponsible, non-modeler “drone” pilots? The rules in the FAA Reauthorization bill should differentiate between AMA members who fly fixed-wing aircraft and non-AMA members who fly multirotor aircraft.

    The AMA should have stuck to ther guns and separated themselves (and us) from multirotor pilots. It should be obvious that AMA members do not want them as fellow members because they are ruining our hobby.

    1. There’s a huge distinction that people seems to be missing, that people seem to be getting entirely from the sensationalized news articles. There is a HUGE segment of ‘drone’ fliers that are often more ‘hobby oriented’ than your general fixed wing flier. This is not a ‘drones’ vs ‘planes’ argument, not a rehashed version of the helis vs planes debacle years ago. This is a hobbyist vs photographer issue.

      The last thing we need is pointless division amongst our own, it will only serve to drive away new members and earn resentment on the AMA’s part.

  114. Here’s a letter I’ve sent to both my Senators. Only FYI and NOT looking for critics. Feel free to amend/use if you’d like.

    Dear Mr. Gardner,
    I currently enjoy a great hobby in this Country that brings many great people together. It’s a hobby entrenched by great engineering and technology. It’s a hobby that is shared from Father to Son, Mother to Son, Mother to Daughter, Grandfather to Granddaughter, and Grandfather to Grandson. It’s shared amongst all races and educational backgrounds. It is a hobby that has been around safely for decades. Like so many other things in our lives, it is being threatened by technology fears, terrorism fears, and even by plain ignorance. This hobby is the gift of flying RC Helicopters and Airplanes.
    This is not an easy hobby. It is difficult, time consuming and expensive to build, learn to fly, and maintain these machines. For decades these model aircraft have been flown very safely and successfully by Line-of-Sight only, as the video/camera technology did not exist to do otherwise. In just the past few years, the technology and costs have come into line and brought many inexperienced and ignorant people into a hobby that they do not understand and appreciate. These low cost and relatively easy to control aircraft such as Multirotors, “Quads”, and most commonly referred to as “Drones” into the hands of people that do not have significant energies and resources invested into these aircraft. Keep in mind that the Helicopters and Airplanes (which are flown, controlled, and landed all within a controlled area and by Line-of-Site) take hundreds, if not THOUSANDS of hours to build, learn to fly, and maintain. The thought of losing, crashing or colliding these Helicopters and/or Airplanes with an object would likely be both mentally and financially catastrophic to the owner/pilot. We simply will not put our beloved “Models” in harms way. On the other hand you have the MultiRotors, “Drones”, or “Quads” which give a very stable and thus quickly learned “feel” to be flown wherever this inexperienced new owner may feel empowered to go.
    It’s critical that you understand this difference in the two vastly different worlds of model RC Flyers/Owners. Us, Line-of-Site, hobby pilots, are being lumped in and punished along with these ignorant owners of these relatively easy to fly Multirotors, “Drones”, and “Quads.” This Senate bill:…D5754C8E79A388
    is unjustly penalizing the vast majority of responsibly RC pilots in order to “capture” the irresponsible!
    Please take a moment to understand these vastly different situations and consider your votes for this Senate Bill. The Academy of Model Aeronautics ( AMA ) is fighting to maintain our rights to continue enjoying our hobby. This is a way of life for thousands of responsible AMA Members.
    I would be happy to discuss further if you would like.


  115. I grew up flying balsa airplanes with my father. I have built foam airplanes as an adult. I have been an AMA member and I follow every safety guidline when I fly and expect others to do the same as well as educate.

    I hate to see this hobby disappear as much as anyone else. But DONT blame drones for the fall of this hobby. Blame yourself for not inviting new technology and drone pilots into your clubs and educating them like you would your own child. Drones did nothing!! Your poor attitudes are ruining everything!! Go cry on your foam board and watch your paint bleed or be a damn positive solution!!

    I absolutely love my racing quadcopter multirotor drone whatever you want to call it. Everyone in what you call the drone community are already policing each other as much as everyone else because we all want to fly.

    Don’t be ignorant!! Over half the community of people flying drones started or are still flying model airplanes. Shove in that in your pipe and see what smoke comes out. I bet your best flying buddy secretly owns a racing quadcopter with FPV gear you don’t even know it!!

    Support the AMA and your community instead of being narcasitic d$%*#!!

    1. I remember the flying fields here in Arizona taking that kind of stance against RC Helicopters when they first started getting popular. Most fields had bans on NON-FIXED WING aircraft. Eventually, they flying fields started to accept them.

  116. I have posted and written to the AMA many times. I have written to all the district vicew presidents since 2014 and made it pubic many times that the AMA is lagging behind and putting to much trust in our Government leaders and the people at the FAA as well.
    I am a veteran and ever since 1965 I have fought for what the government promised all vets over the years. By not asking the members of the AMA to support them earilier in this battle they have done great harm to the hobby, its time fot a change in leadership in the AMA, we need to have people who are willing to stand up for us all and speak out and defend the hobby with a loud and clear voice. I do not see any mention of this in the papers or or press have you? groucy old man!

  117. It is time boyz and gurlz to stop talking and take action!! It is now the 20th of the month of April…some years ago …Captain Parker told his men at Lexington/Concord Bridge… “Stand your Ground, Don’t fire unless fired upon….and……if they want to start a war…let it start here!!
    Do I have to say anything else??

  118. For all you anti drone people, I hope Washington impose harsher rules for you fixed wing flyers. YOU WANT TO BASH US WITH DRONES then WE WILL BASH YOU . You get what you deserve since you don’t want to stand a fight this together. Drones will take over. Drones are the future of the hobby.

    1. No they aren’t, the clowns will leave as they have only passing interest in the novelty of being a pilot–Drone flyer skills are next to nothing, a chimp could fly a drone–get over yourselves

  119. Like many similar issues in society, this is not a simple matter to resolve. The AMA membership, in general, shows a good understanding and practices safe operation of model aircraft but candidly, some do not. The biggest offenders are the operators of multi-rotor aircraft and most specifically, those with onboard cameras that allow them to fly far beyond the range of their back yards or flying fields. Unfortunately, I have even seen AMA club members fly multi-rotors far beyond their line of sight and far outside the range of our field. I just hoped that they didn’t run out of power and drop their aircraft on top of a moving car or an unsuspecting pedestrian. They could not do this without the camera equipment.

    I have personally been really frustrated by the muti-rotor “operators” who go to a hobby shop,toss down a chunk of money and buy a ready-to-fly unit and are in the air as soon as they get home. They have no understanding of aircraft safety nor do they care to learn. Think that they registered these aircraft? They don’t even read the instruction books that come with their new purchases. They fly these aircraft in neighborhoods, on the beach and over kids playing sports. And most do not seem to understand that they create a real hazard for those standing below these aircraft. Most have no real interest in model aviation. These are the people who are ruining our hobby.

    The problem is not the pilots of the model airplanes or the single rotor helicopters but those who have purchased multi-rotors as camera (FPV) platforms. What needs to be legislated is the operation of FPV or any camera carrying equipment that allows them to fly these units so far from them. Until this happens then all other hobby flyers will suffer due to the poor judgement used by a few.

    And finally, as much as I hate to say it, maybe we should hire the NRA to represent us. They seem to know how to manage Washington with a hobby much more hazardous than model aircraft. The AMA is approaching this like a bunch of school boys and need to take a much more aggressive approach or this hobby will be lost to all. Sacrifice the camera equipment to save our hobby but quit thinking that writing letters to congress is going to help this issue at all. It won’t.

  120. I find it disgusting that so many people commenting here lamenting about the great terror in the sky known as the “drone”. You can thank the media for it’s overzealous fear mongering by comparing military predator UAV’s into the same category as any hobbyists project with a camera mounted to. Or you can blame your incompetent politicians that are completely ignorant of the hobby world and only care about getting re-elected. But don’t blame the hobbyist. Or the kid or gets his first RTF RC aircraft. Or the guy that decided that putting a camera on his RC helicopter would be really cool. We would have all done it had the technology been available years back.

    When I fly my Super Cub I still get approached by fearful people thinking that it is a drone and that I must be up to some illicit activity. The best we can do is to educate the public about the hobby and the technologies, including the “drones” and that they really aren’t evil, they are just “toys”. The AMA has no choice but to embrace new technologies, less they become irrelevant, so don’t blame them either.

  121. Seriously, I would like to see this “airworthiness” thing enforced. What do we take our stuff to an FAA inspection station? C’mon…. Hey! I’ll take that job! The FAA I have talked to said that the Govt is trying to keep them out of approach patterns of airports, so they are going to slog us around in a quagmire until people realize that drones that break the rules means High fines, and jail time. They will make an example of some poor sod, and then it will become “self policing” because the Govt is broke, and cannot do it on its own. The fodder of it is that unfortunately, flying sites within the 5 mile zones will be lost, including mine. I have seen research where NASA is working on “virtual fences” that will be put into place around airports, buildings, and sensitive installations, so aside form this BS the modeling world is going through with this, it is already almost solved as far as illegal drone intrusions. The thing is thaT, AS WITH COMPUTERS, THER IS ALWAYS A HACK.

    1. I suspect that part of the “type acceptance” will be required gps, geofencing, and some method to absolute eliminate hacking of the geofencing routines.

      This entire lunacy appears to have originated from ALPA and ATA. Check Tim Canoll’s testimony:


      There are lots of other positions taken by these groups, but they all center around these ill-conceived ideas.

  122. now you know how gun owners feel when our stupid government wants to take them a way from the general public because drug dealers and gang kill each other every day. look at chicago. NO we are not going to let you protect yourself in your own home is their attude. JUST BIG GOVERNMENT AT IT’S WORST.

  123. For the record, does anyone know the nature of what these “FAA design and production standards” entail? That should be the first order of business – to understand what we are fighting.

    For the record, I don’t like these restrictions any more than anyone else does, but we have to understand that we are a ‘little fish in a large pond’. It doesn’t help to lambaste people or sing the “I Told You So” song. We need to organize and we all need to pull together.

    Yes, we’re angry, but let’s turn that into some positive energy and defeat this thing.

    Just my $.02

  124. Not renewing my AMA, they can’t do anything to stop this. What is it they do for me? Nothing!!! See ya AMA … Your really not needed anymore.. Smoke and mirrors is really all your touting now .

  125. You didn’t think a $5 registration would be the end of it did you? The AMA doesn’t seem to be effective. I will never send you any more money. Future former AMA member 459500.

  126. Just the start next the states will get involved and each state will have more regulation!Will be regulated just like firearms.What a mess!

  127. A membership in the Academy of Model Aeronautics covers you for whatever you fly and wherever you fly.

    And you’re covered whether you choose to fly at an AMA club field, park, backyard or wherever.

    The above statements are directly from the AMA website on the drones are good tab. The AMA is basically telling people they could fly wherever they like and still be covered. Whatever happened to flying at a club field sanctioned by the AMA? If you are allowing people to fly wherever they want, of course they will! That’s the whole problem! The AMA is talking through both sides of their mouth. Wanting people to fly safe and responsible but promoting flying anywhere to sell their insurance to get membership numbers up. What a joke. This might be the last year I support the AMA and I have been a member for 16 years.

    1. Chris, that verbiage regarding members being covered wherever they fly has been on the ama membership form long before the advent of drones and before you joined the ama.


      1. It doesn’t matter how long it was on there. It could have been on there since 1936 but since the recent popularity of drones and the problems being caused by some of the drone owners, it might be a good idea to update some of the wording on the website. They should provide a disclaimer clarifying the obvious since some people will literally fly “wherever” they want. A farmers field off the grid isn’t an issue, flying near the end of an active runway is an issue. Both areas fall into the “wherever category”, thats a problem. Is the AMA making an assumption that all members will read it and fly responsibly “wherever” they want? if they are, thats asking for trouble.

        Just my two cents,


    2. Chris, I am an AMA member. My nearest AMA club field is 1 hour 20 minutes away. When it isn’t flooded or the access dirt road a swamp.
      On the other hand, a local farmer allows me to fly off his field 4 minutes from my home. It has been leveled, and has open approach and departure clearways for even my 3 and 4 meter sailplanes.
      Lots of AMA members fly off private property (with owners permission).

      1. I see your point. The point I was trying to make regarding the wording was how it could be interpreted by someone new to the hobby. I don’t have any problem with someone flying in a safe manner off the grid somewhere. I just don’t want to see someone new to the hobby think its ok to go fly where they could potentially damage property or hurt someone because they read on the website they can fly wherever they want.



  128. Yet again, knee jerk reactions by the government to enable them to hide all the other issues with the aircraft industry that cause danger to the public. Poor airline maintenance, the few pilots caught over alcohol limits, flight attendants dropping safety slides and numerous other issues. What government legislation do they impose against such things and how little do they see it as a threat to safety.

    However us law abiding hobbyists who fly at clubs are made to suffer. Our equipment is our pride and joy and sometimes has life savings invested into it. Yet they see it as a threat to the airspace. We are 4.6 miles from our local airport and are now under threat, the threat of the government.

    Multirotor flyers are not all thugs and irresponsible either, I fly various and have thousands invested in this kit, so why would I be blatantly dangerous? I wouldn’t. Because of government intervention we now receive calls to local police, heckles from the public who have been indoctrinated with dislike by the media.

    We must stand up and protect our hobby. No-one owns the sky outright, its should be shared safely and responsibly.

  129. What could meeting FAA design and construction standards mean? Will plans for home builds need to be submitted for approval? Will construction materials have to have a UL tag on them? How about offensive symbols? Will swastikas have to be replaced with peace signs on German planes to satisfy the politically correct? The government is not our friend. Yesterday on the news there was a story of a British airliner being hit by a drone. The worst has yet to come.

  130. This problem has absolutely nothing to do with whether the aircraft is fixed wing, helicopter or multi rotor. It has to do with the fact that technology has reached the point where anyone can fly them. So now we have a lot of people flying them that have no clue what they are doing or the possible repercussions of their actions. The AMA seemed to have taken the position of throwing the “drones” under the bus and hoped that would appease the FAA and reassure the paranoid public. That backfired and we know we have an incredibly burdensome system that seems grow worse by the day.

    I started flying RC aircraft back in the 60’s and I welcome the advances that have been made in technology. I don’t condemn new types of aircraft because the don’t represent traditional “model” aircraft. We had a couple of people at our flying field that have flown for years but were unaware of what the current regulations actually are even with all of the current media coverage. The longtime AMA member was under the impression that the regulation only applied to “drones” which he interpreted as being multi rotor and didn’t apply to his airplanes. When I told him that it applied to any remotely controlled aircraft that weighed more than .55 pounds he couldn’t believe it. “When did that happen?” he said.

    One of the local clubs has a new facility after not having one for several years. It is 4.5 miles from a controlled field. They required to call the tower prior to each individual flight with registration number, aircraft type, personal info, flight duration, altitude and on and on. The situation has improved somewhat but this almost Orwellian.

    The current state of affairs is absurd. I’m surprised they haven’t added background checks to the new legislation. The NRA would never let something like this happen. Apparently they know how to lobby.

  131. I never dreamed that anything could ever affect the hobby that is so educational and enjoyable for so many people.Of course there has to be safety rules and regulations,we live in a world of regulations.When multirotor or UASs were named “DRONES” that struck fear in the eyes of the general public and the media jumped onto the bandwagon.There will always be people that think they can get away with not following the rules,the jails are full of these people.And now we have a mess and it may take a while to clean it up.Keep sending your letters to your congressmen,we can make a difference,and maybe this hobby will survive and be productive like it has for many many years.

  132. I’d intended to be conscientious about following the rules as I’m re-entering the hobby after 30 years.

    With laws so restrictive, what’s the point? I’m not going to jump through ridiculous hoops to fly my own builds.

    This will be good lesson in teaching my son to intentionally disobey unjust laws.

  133. The real problem is lumping drones with model aircraft. Drones are a different breed altogether with their ability for autonomous flight well beyond visual range with FPV and GPS. I think the bill should be for enforcing drone use and keep model airplanes out of it. They are simply two different animals. The other thing that concerns me is that 400,000 people registered their aircraft with the FAA and only 32,000 emailed their representatives over this new regulation. Communications in this hobby is also a big problem.

  134. I attended the AMA Expo in 2014 and was present at the AMA open membership meeting. I wanted to stand and ask for a show of hands as to how many in attendance were active multi-rotor flyers. I chickened out and didn’t ask – I still regret not having done so. After the meeting I sought out several of the AMA “heavies” and asked them what sort of hand count I’d gotten if I had posed my question. They quickly assured me that more than half would’ve revealed themselves as “drone” flyers. I felt that was BS. I confess, I only occasionally visit four different California model flying sites on an irregular basis – but only ONE TIME at ONE SITE have I seen a multi-rotor being operated. And at that, the operator was the owner of a local hobby shop!
    Just look at the pages of MA anymore. If you are new to the club, you’d be forgiven for coming to the conclusion that traditional aircraft modeling is on the wane while FPV & multi-rotor racing is at the forefront of AMA’s focus. I’d have to conclude that if it leaves the ground, AMA embraces it. What’s next – pigeon keepers? Falconry enthusiasts? Kite flyers?
    You have to ask yourself if the nit wits at the FAA have ever even HEARD of Free Flight models. Wait’ll they get wind of THOSE! Flying in unrestricted and uncontrolled fashion and at the whim of the winds – god save us all!
    Anyway…. It’s too late for the AMA to divorce itself from the multi-rotor plague. Unca Sam now recognizes the source of those camera platform – real aircraft threatening menaces and he’s gonna regulate the livin’ s*it out of us. Here we are – battling with the US government – THE GOVERNMENT OF OUR SUPPOSEDLY FREE COUNTRY!!! – to try and enjoy our hobby of emulating REAL aircraft by building miniatures of them. May those once noble pursuits RIP. Of course, on the bright side – think of ALL the innocent kids we’re protecting from the evils of Ambroid and butyrate dope!

  135. One thing that is missing here is a link or description to the “new FAA design and production standards and impose unnecessary regulation on hobbyists who often build their own models at home”. What are the design and production standards? And what is the regulation for home built model airplanes? Can they enforce these regulations on the Chinese? Is this the regulation?

    We need to know what it is we are fighting not just a simple sentence about design and production standards.

    1. Just wondering that maybe the good AMA and its powers that be seen the influx of the drones as a brand new Cash COW FOR THE AMA.??? HMMMM ??? YOU KNOW new people buying these drones by the hundreds and I understand many were bought for the Christmas holidays,even if the AMA got 10 % of these buyers to join … now that’s a handy piece of change :o))

      1. If they got that many new members of the Christmas season, you’d think they’d be shouting it from the hilltops. But they haven’t, so it makes me think they didn’t.

  136. You need a strong PAC.

    I have both model and full size aircraft. I enjoy building scale model model aircraft. AOPA has a strong PAC and doing a great job battling user fees for the last 10 years. If passed this would collapse the private aircraft industry. Last year Obama tried once more, congress basically said “Stop it” Bill is fueled by airlines wanting to ground private aircraft that cut into their business.

  137. I’m a full scale pilot, and I fly both fixed wing scale models and multi-rotor FPV. I’m also a grandfather who enjoys sharing all facets of RC aviation with my family. I am disgusted with the stick-in-the-mud attitudes of the AMA vanguard who think that things should never change. Evolve, please! You are quick to point out the educational benefits of model aviation for the next generation, but you insist that they keep doing things the old way. Look where aviation is heading. Computers, driverless cars, virtual reality, and yes, “drones” are the future. Why can’t we enjoy the old while embracing the future? Will there be changes? Of course! If we as a community would pull together and stop blaming the next generation for decisions made by a government that WE elected, maybe we could be more of a force for positive change.

    1. +1 on John’s comment about embracing the future. Every other post in this thread is people saying “The AMA really messed up by allowing MR/FPV”. Well that boat has sailed. It is now up to us as a community to find ways to involve as many as possible of the 800,000 new RC pilots.

  138. Chad, what is the AMA doing to educate congressional politicians as to what our hobby is and represents?

    When a politician has to make decisions about a bill, how can they make an informed decision without understanding all sides on an issue? They can’t and don’t try to understand. They will rely on what they already know, and what is presented to them.

    The FAA has an inside track on making their case to Congress, because they know their way around – it’s their home field. Proposing restrictive legislation for drones is easy to present as a safety issue.

    On our side, we are part of a relatively little known and less understood special interest group. I’d bet that only a handful of congressmen have ever seen a model airplane fly that was more than a mass marketed toy. How can we hope to persuade Congress that the AMA represents a group of serious, safety conscious miniature aircraft flyers with long established safety protocols and a history of positive benefits if congressmen have never been exposed to it?

    Some years ago the AMA sent out a DVD to all it’s members to be passed along to promote the hobby. Could a DVD be produced specifically for Congress that portrays what Model Aviation is, how it is beneficial to the public, and how the AMA promotes safe and responsible flight, and how the proposed bills endanger the hobby?

    Such a DVD could be mailed to all members of congress with a letter directly by the AMA. Additionally, AMA members could sponsor mailing more copies to their individual congressmen with an individually written letter. We might be able to get 5 minutes of the congressman’s time that way to get our message to the people who cat the votes.

    1. We agree, part of this process should involve educating legislators about our hobby.

      We have met with staffers and legislators in both the House Transportation and Infrastructure committee and the Senate Commerce committee explaining our hobby through testimony, videos, and photos. We have also hosted leaders from DC to nearby flying fields and have an invitation to other legislators to join us a Joe Nall to experience modeling first hand.

      Many in DC have a general understanding of our hobby, but still believe they need to create legislation to stop uneducated pilots or bad actors. As a result, the CBO exemption is still in place with both the House and Senate version.

  139. The safety requirements and regulations that they are trying to pass against the model flying community appear to me to have many instances of a Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) direct reversal. An excerpt from FAR Part 103 for ultralight aircraft follows below. Since the FAA director said this is all about safety how can a 400-500 pound aircraft being flown under FAR Part 103 be less dangerous than an under 55 pound aircraft being flown under the provisions of an organized modeling group? I’ve been a model builder for quite a few years I believe any restrictions on how I build aircraft is in direct violation of our Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Interpretation, I spent 22 years upholding these basic freedoms I feel they should still be protected legally.

    Sec. 103.7 Certification and registration.

    (a) Notwithstanding any other section pertaining to certification of
    aircraft or their parts or equipment, ultralight vehicles and their
    component parts and equipment are not required to meet the airworthiness
    certification standards specified for aircraft or to have certificates
    of airworthiness.
    (b) Notwithstanding any other section pertaining to airman certification,
    operators of ultralight vehicles are not required to meet any aeronautical
    knowledge, age, or experience requirements to operate those vehicles or to
    have airman or medical certificates.
    (c) Notwithstanding any other section pertaining to registration and
    marking of aircraft, ultralight vehicles are not required to be registered
    or to bear markings of any type.

  140. I just downloaded, what I think is, the latest version of the bill. Unfortunately, I am unable to find the disappointing provision of the bill that you speak of. Could you please list them for us to read?

    The version of “45507 – Special rules for model aircraft” looks reasonable to me. The 400 ft limit is gone, the CBO rule is still in effect. There are no safety test or certification requirements. The model aircraft definition is unchanged. This rule looks better than the old one.

    1. Yes, the House and this Senate version included a lot of our asks and revisions. It also preserves the CBO model, but we still feel there are areas of concern including Section 2124.

  141. It seems to me that having an advocate, such as a celebrity or sports figure, or the teams that the AMA fields for international competition, reach out to the media to give much needed exposure to the good things that this hobby provides. Doesn’t Juan Pablo Montoya (Indycar and former Formula 1 driver) fly jets? Positive media exposure would be a good thing and would help in informing the general public of what this hobby is about. Politicians crave positive media exposure.

  142. And this is why I wont be renewing my AMA membership. Waste of money. Thank you AMA for pushing for rules that we already abide by. AMA just lost all relevancy in this hobby.

  143. Many things in this pig of a bill puzzle me; one thing, in particular: I hold a private pilot’s certificate, which is usually sufficient for things like COA operations of sUAS. In Section 2129 subsection 7, it appears that this is insufficient for flying a model. How bizarre.

  144. I wonder if the FAA is going to ban my Flying Witch, or my Flying Santa, or my Pterodactyl, or my Wright Flyer because they don’t meet their building standards.

  145. Just yesterday ( April 19, 2016 ) I read an article in the USA Today newspaper saying that airline pilots reported seeing a drone 300-feet below their aircraft when they were flying at 19,500-feet. Give me a break folks; how much longer can these lies and excuses continue on for these people to continue on their merry way to shut us down. THERE IS NO WAY A MODEL DRONE COULD OR WOULD EVEN GET TO AN ALTITUDE REMOTELY CLOSE TO 19,500-feet. Perhaps the pilots were smoking something or they saw a military drone. I heard somewhere in the news that they aren’t telling us, but the military is using drones over the U.S. .

  146. The frustration and anger towards those flying irresponsibly is deserved. But we should all be laser-focused on individually taking the political action needed to prevent FAA overreach. —They have a responsibility to regulate only where we fly, to insure the safety of manned air traffic. –Not what we fly, or whether we are flying via line-sight, or through an onboard camera.

    There is room for all of us to operate safely within the national airspace. And there is room for all of us in this ever-evolving hobby. I’m hoping the AMA continues to represent us all.

    BTW: I’m an AMA member, AMA sanctioned event attendee, long-time scratch builder, experimenter and FPV fixed wing and multi-rotor enthusiast.


  147. How long before those who live within the “Belt Way”, the same ones who insist on micromanaging all living things, well require RC Pilots to have a “Flight Physical?”

  148. I am afraid I am ashamed to say I served in the army of this country to have
    people in the government that are not willing to use their public posts for better
    things than to harass those of use who abide buy the safety rules when we build
    and fly our toys unlike the mavericks that do not belong to our AMA and do note
    care about the safety of others !
    I thought the constitution gave use the right to what we consider our pursuit of happiness and respect others that join with us in that endeavor but it seems they have their own agenda that does not seem to fit what their elected mode of service to the public that pays their wages and elected them or the congress and senate unless
    they are afraid some one might catch them doing something improper with our toys ?
    Just my opinion or what I wonder about the way they seem bent on destroying the best
    tool for getting our youngsters involved in science and our military support of freedom ?

    1. Well said George; well said indeed ! And then there were those, in their prime, who were drafted into the armed serves during the Vietnam conflict while others with clout and pull saving their skins. Well guess what (?); guess where some of those who ran from the draft are now.

  149. AMA’s problem is that many people (like me) are giving up flying things that would typically require an AMA field; i.e. nitro, gas, or big stuff; and choosing instead slightly smaller electrics that I can fly within walking distance. Not only that, doing so saves $100 a year, which is nothing to sneeze at. If you own your own home, you really don’t need AMA insurance either, which puts your total annual savings at $175! For that kind of money, I can buy four or five decent sized lipos, a handful of good receivers, a couple kits, etc.

    1. Give your home owners insurance company a call and be sure you are covered for an accident caused by an aircraft. You may find you are not covered, this is typical of home owner coverage.

      Because of all the news media reports of problems caused by drone operators, local and county government are quickly passing rules prohibiting flying an RC aircraft on public land. Parks and ball field are becoming unavailable to RC aircraft of any size.

  150. The future of our aerospace industry now lies in the hands of Hobby King and DJI “graduates”. Fair well Neil Armstrong and thanks for all the inspiration, ’twas good while it lasted.

    1. Agreed. Hobby King has provided a great service by making this hobby, venture, journey, and learning experience AFFORDABLE and fun ! What was once only for those who could afford it is now affordable to much much more out there. Also I might add that NitroPlanes and HobbyPartz follows in as a close second to Hobby King.

  151. This is not just about RC flight or modeling – just like firearms, healthcare, (and just about everything else) it is about control. The Federal Government just won’t stop until they control every aspect of our lives. Everyone needs to stop being polarized by party affiliation and unite to fight big government control. This whole country was founded on liberty and we are letting it be taken away a bite at a time because we aren’t looking at the big picture…

  152. I looks like I am going to have to add some self defense systems to my drone, urh, ah, I mean RC aircraft. 😉

    When I was younger, we used to fly our RC aircraft on the local Army airfield on weekends. Times have changed. Now we cannot fly within 3 miles, no it has increased to 5 miles and not just major airfield but heliports too?

    Do it yourself autopilot technology has changed RC aircraft flying substantially for me. It has become much more reliable. I do not lose planes anymore. I have recorded telemetry in the plane and on the ground. I know exactly how high I am flying and how fast. Losing RC controller contact is not a disaster, the plane autopilot turns around and comes home. I find and fix problems with the RC aircraft quickly. From what I have experienced autopilot technology enhances RC aircraft operational reliability and safety considerably.

    Much as I appreciate and practice the skill of manual flying, manual flying is just not as reliable as having the autopilot stabilize and safe the RC plane.

  153. I am so SICK and TIRED of AMA fixed wing pilots calling anyone that flies something different either an irresponsible “Drone pilot” or a “non-modeler”! I’ve been scratch building and flying rc aircraft since the late 80’s. I also happen to fly multi-rotor camera platforms, FPV fixed wing and 250 size quads. I have always done so safely and responsibly. I also design and machine/3D print many parts and assemblies for ALL my aircraft! I am very much a modeler as well as a responsible pilot. HOW DARE YOU throw all people flying multi’s and anything different into a “one size fits all category”!! You people should be ashamed of yourselves!! You’re just a bunch of BIGOTS! I suppose your of the same ilk that categorize all black people as gang members and all Mexicans as lazy fruit pickers. I wish people like you would just pull your lip over your head and swallow! Please just go away, the hobby doesn’t have room for people with such an unbelievably narrow mind! If it flies and you fly it responsibly, why should you care what type of aircraft the pilot chooses to fly? Un fricking believable…/end rant

    1. As with anything there will always be generalizations placed upon a group, this in-fighting helps nothing. The big picture is again about control, everything we do must be controlled as we live in a police state and any activity that poses 0.00001% risk is unacceptable to the dead wood that works for the government. I disagree that fixed wing pilots discriminate, maybe some old buzzards and I am sorry if you have had negative experiences.

      I had my concerns as our hobby became easier and easier, 3D Axis gyros, bail out switches, etc. that more people would get into the Hobby, which by itself is great. But when something like a UAV (aka Drone–which isn’t even correct terminology) can essentially fly itself then the pilot isn’t going to treat it with the same respect as if they spent 6 months – to several years, which is required to become a decent Heli pilot. With that work came respect and I know that flying my helicopter is dangerous, 700 and 800 size can kill and have, so I take many precautions. Unfortunately, Johnny-come-lately sees a UAV, thinks it is neat, buys it and then with our pervasive “instant gratification at all times” mentality proceeds to fly it w/o fully understanding the potential. A few hours and Johnny is an expert and with his new found skills he is going to push the envelope and get some cool video. So he flies over crowds, into areas that aren’t safe or appropriate, private property, etc.

      At BEST he has annoyed people, leaving an indelible memory of what r/c people are like. Now whenever Johnny’s new found friends hear restriction or limiting flying areas for RC they say “Hell Yes, those guys are jerks” and so more restriction comes because of a few dozen Johnny’s who fly, not planes, not helis, but wait for it… DRONES or whatever the misnomer du jour is, we have more restrictions because of DRONES, flown by idiots how would not be able to hover a helicopter or land a plane. Idiots who have set us back decades with a government that loves to pass laws and further restrict our ability to do anything.

      So if you fly a Drone and don’t feel the love, that may not be fair, but until these Jackasses get bored and quit or crash and burn, you will probably feel some hostility.

  154. Would you please point out exactly which pages and page numbers contain harmful provisions to Model Aviation? Thanks in advance.

    1. I second this. It would be nice if the pages/wording in question from the documents was being pointed out specifically.

  155. Chad, please explain what in the amendment was deleted, and who deleted it. This is our elected legislature in action, or is it? Or does the FAA have god status and is untouchable? It is NOT acceptable for faceless bureaucrats making laws behind closed doors.
    The FAA has never dealt with the AMA in an honest manner. All the FAA actions have simply been done to fulfill the requirements of their procedures before passing down rules from on high. They have always had an agenda and are uninterested in the model aircraft community except to regulate it out of existence.

    1. Banzai,

      Many of our earlier revisions (removing technology requirements) and amendments (removing the 400′ limit) were accepted. In addition, the Special Rule for Model Aircraft is generally intact.

      Unfortunately there are still provisions in the bill such as section 2124 that request the FAA create standards and testing for manufacturers. This section could be interpreted to apply to scratch or kit bash builders as well.

      1. Chad, please inform us as to where can the “FAA design and production standards”, I have been searching for this information since the quote was made from the Senate Bill.
        Unlike most RC aircraft fixed wing flyers, this is a major concern for me (and a few others) because most all my aircraft I fly are of my own design and construction (gas powered scale and aerobatic aircraft). I find it difficult to understand how the FAA can mandate standards that they have not been materially involved in (design and construction of a “flying” model aircraft)
        I also can not see how the FAA will be able to govern the aircraft being constructed overseas.
        Please provide us with an internet link or some form of a document addressing the “FAA design and production standards”


  156. Divide and conquer! I love to scratch build, if I could only build or fly I would probably choose building. Who could have ever foreseen a law that would prevent us from taking a pen, paper and an idea and build our own flying machine. But this is how Big Government works. “Don’t worry, you are a trap shooter and this law only restricts handguns.” Followed by “We aren’t after your hunting rifle, just that scary looking black rifle” Little by little you lose; first your freedom, then your mind. Now we have to register our models (sound familiar?) If we continue to look at this as Them vs Us I see a world where only outlaws will fly rc. Just my two cents worth

  157. Received following from one of my Senators in response to last contact>

    Dear Joseph:

    Hobbyists have safely operated remote control airplanes and similar machines for decades. Drones and small unmanned aircraft (UAS) have recently become much more accessible to the general public than they have been in the past. Small drones and RC airplanes are now capable of flying longer distances at higher altitudes. While it is important to have guidelines in place for the safety of operators, the public, and other air traffic, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) should recognize the work that organizations like the Academy of Model Aeronautics have done to promote safe and responsible operation.

    On April 19 the Senate passed legislation to reauthorize FAA programs and operations (H.R. 636) by a vote of 95-3. Although Senator Inhofe’s (R-OK) amendment (S. Amdt. 3596) to the legislation was not included in the final version of the bill, H.R. 636 includes a provision to allow for special rules for model aircraft, including limiting the FAA’s rulemaking ability on model aircraft that are operated in accordance with community-based safety guidelines and are flown for recreational use. The bill is far from perfect with regard to model aircraft and I am concerned that some provisions are unnecessary and burdensome. I will continue to work with my colleagues, including Senator Inhofe, to ensure that enthusiasts can continue to enjoy model aviation.

    I’ll keep your thoughts in mind as Congress moves forward on FAA reauthorization legislation. It’s important that regulations make sense and don’t create unnecessary burdens for the model aeronautics community. Thank you for contacting me.


    Michael B. Enzi

    United States Senator


  158. As a brand new member of the AMA, having registered both to support the legal fight against the FAA and for the ability to fly my drone at local parks that requires AMA membership, it’s really upsetting to see such a negative reaction from the AMA community here. I really hope that the anti-droners here have a change of heart and realize we’re in this together. While it’s true that quadcopters are what got me into the hobby, I’m now considering fixed wing RC aircraft as well. In my opinion, drones are a good thing for the AMA as far as bringing in new members and spreading more awareness of the hobby itself and the many different aspects within RC aircraft.

    I’ve registered my drones, I’ve signed up with the AMA, I notify the airport when I’m flying at the park, I’m doing everything I can to comply with the rules they’ve put in place. Unfortunately, it does seem like the end game here is a total ban on RC aircraft of any kind. If that happens, I’ll keep on flying and take my chances.

  159. With all due respect to the droners, these so called drones formally known as quadracopters are simple mass commercialized aerial toys with crappy flight characteristics that will never match an airplane. Their hype will soon subside as everything else “cool” out in the market right now. As the helicopter (egg beaters), drones are all about limitations and not and like so, they are at a death-end in terms of performance. No matter how many rotors you add as soon as the juice is drained out you are just a useless un-glidable brick.

  160. My comments on this blog-site, which were approved and posted for a few days. have now been purged ! People asked for FACTS and INFORMATION, and I gave them. If this is how the AMA treats a member of their’s then what’s the point of being a member; FAA fiasco or not !

  161. Hi Chad,

    If the AMA would notify all of its members by email the next time they wish to mobilize a letter writing campaign, they might get even more than 30,100 responses. Long ago, I signed up for email notices from the AMA, but the next one I get will be the first. I only learned about the letter writing campaign through the blog.



    1. Hi Dan,

      We did send out an email directly to our members, sorry you did not receive it. Please give us a call at 765-287-1256 to verify we have your correct information on file.

      1. Hi Chad,

        Thanks for the information. I called the number and found out that I was no longer receiving updates from the AMA because I had opted out of receiving advertising emails from affiliates. If I had known that making that choice also cut me off from the AMA emails, then I wouldn’t have done so. I wonder how many other members aren’t receiving AMA updates because they made the same choice?

        It might be worthwhile to put a notice in Model Aviation that members who haven’t received email updates from the AMA should call to update their membership information, so we can get the best possible response in future letter writing campaigns.



  162. To AMA — What can members do next?

    Many of us responded to the AMA’s email request to contact Congress prior to the Senate bill.

    I’d like to urge AMA to now tell us specifically what more we can do to influence the rest of the legislative process given that it appears the Senate bill contains several detrimental provisions.

    1. DETRIMENTAL and INSANE at the same time. Psychiatrists have their work cut out for them.

  163. This article is terribly misleading. Reading the Senate Bill shows that the only additional requirements to be imposed on hobbyists who build their own models weighing less than 55 lbs is that carry with them proof of having passed a federal safety test. These are the relevant provisions:

    13 ‘‘§ 44808. Special rules for model aircraft
    14 ‘‘(a) IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding any other pro-
    15 vision of law relating to the incorporation of unmanned
    16 aircraft systems into Federal Aviation Administration
    17 plans and policies, including this chapter, the Adminis-
    18 trator of the Federal Aviation Administration may not
    19 promulgate any new rule or regulation specific only to an
    20 unmanned aircraft operating as a model aircraft if—
    21 ‘‘(1) the aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or
    22 recreational use;
    23 ‘‘(2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with
    24 a community-based set of safety guidelines and with
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 86 :\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 in the programming of a nationwide community-
    2 based organization;
    3 ‘‘(3) not flown beyond visual line of sight of
    4 persons co-located with the operator or in direct
    5 communication with the operator;
    6 ‘‘(4) the aircraft is operated in a manner that
    7 does not interfere with and gives way to any manned
    8 aircraft;
    9 ‘‘(5) when flown within 5 miles of an airport,
    10 the operator of the aircraft provides the airport op-
    11 erator, where applicable, and the airport air traffic
    12 control tower (when an air traffic facility is located
    13 at the airport) with prior notice and receives ap-
    14 proval, to the extent practicable, for the operation
    15 from each (model aircraft operators flying from a
    16 permanent location within 5 miles of an airport
    17 should establish a mutually-agreed upon operating
    18 procedure with the airport operator and the airport
    19 air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility
    20 is located at the airport));
    21 ‘‘(6) the aircraft is flown from the surface to
    22 not more than 400 feet in altitude; and
    23 ‘‘(7) the operator has passed an aeronautical
    24 knowledge and safety test administered by the Fed-
    25 eral Aviation Administration online for the operation
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 87 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 of unmanned aircraft systems subject to the require-
    2 ments of section 44809 and maintains proof of test
    3 passage to be made available to the Administrator or
    4 law enforcement upon request.
    5 ‘‘(b) UPDATES.—
    6 ‘‘(1) IN GENERAL.—The Administrator, in col-
    7 laboration with government and industry stake-
    8 holders, including nationwide community-based orga-
    9 nizations, shall initiate a process to update the oper-
    10 ational parameters under subsection (a), as appro-
    11 priate.
    12 ‘‘(2) CONSIDERATIONS.—In updating an oper-
    13 ational parameter under paragraph (1), the Admin-
    14 istrator shall consider—
    15 ‘‘(A) appropriate operational limitations to
    16 mitigate aviation safety risk and risk to the un-
    17 involved public;
    18 ‘‘(B) operations outside the membership,
    19 guidelines, and programming of a nationwide
    20 community-based organization;
    21 ‘‘(C) physical characteristics, technical
    22 standards, and classes of aircraft operating
    23 under this section;
    24 ‘‘(D) trends in use, enforcement, or inci-
    25 dents involving unmanned aircraft systems; and
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 88 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 ‘‘(E) ensuring, to the greatest extent prac-
    2 ticable, that updates to the operational param-
    3 eters correspond to, and leverage, advances in
    4 technology.
    5 ‘‘(3) SAVINGS CLAUSE.—Nothing in this sub-
    6 section shall be construed as expanding the author-
    7 ity of the Administrator to require operators of
    8 model aircraft under the exemption of this sub-
    9 section to be required to seek permissive authority of
    10 the Administrator prior to operation in the national
    11 airspace system.
    12 ‘‘(c) STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION.—Nothing in this
    13 section shall be construed to limit the authority of the Ad-
    14 ministrator to pursue enforcement action against persons
    15 operating personal unmanned aircraft.
    16 ‘‘(d) MODEL AIRCRAFT DEFINED.—In this section,
    17 the term ‘model aircraft’ means an unmanned aircraft
    18 that—
    19 ‘‘(1) is capable of sustained flight in the atmos-
    20 phere; and
    21 ‘‘(2) is limited to weighing not more than 55
    22 pounds, including the weight of anything attached to
    23 or carried by the aircraft, unless otherwise approved
    24 through a design, construction, inspection, flight
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 89 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 test, and operational safety program administered by
    2 a community-based organization.’’.
    4 (1) TABLE OF CONTENTS.—The table of con-
    5 tents for chapter 448, as amended by section 2128
    6 of this Act, is further amended by inserting after the
    7 item relating to section 44807 the following: ‘‘4480
    8. Special rules for model aircraft.’’.
    9 Section 336 of the FAA Modernization and Reform
    10 Act of 2012 (49 U.S.C. 40101 note) and the item
    11 relating to that section in the table of contents
    12 under section 1(b) of that Act (126 Stat. 13) are re-
    13 pealed.
    16 (a) IN GENERAL.—Chapter 448, as amended by sec-
    17 tion 2129 of this Act, is further amended by inserting
    18 after section 44808 the following:
    19 ‘‘§ 44809. Aeronautical knowledge and safety test
    20 ‘‘(a) IN GENERAL.—An individual may not operate
    21 an unmanned aircraft system unless—
    22 ‘‘(1) the individual has successfully completed
    23 an aeronautical knowledge and safety test under
    24 subsection (c);
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 90 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 ‘‘(2) the individual has authority to operate an
    2 unmanned aircraft under other Federal law; or
    3 ‘‘(3) the individual is a holder of an airmen cer-
    4 tificate issued under section 44703.
    5 ‘‘(b) EXCEPTION.—This section shall not apply to the
    6 operation of an unmanned aircraft system that has been
    7 authorized by the Federal Aviation Administration under
    8 section 44802, section 44805, section 44806, or section
    9 44807.
    11 TEST.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enact-
    12 ment of the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthoriza-
    13 tion Act of 2016, the Administrator of the Federal Avia-
    14 tion Administration, in consultation with manufacturers
    15 of unmanned aircraft systems, other industry stake-
    16 holders, and community-based aviation organizations,
    17 shall develop an aeronautical knowledge and safety test
    18 that can be administered electronically.
    19 ‘‘(d) REQUIREMENTS.—The Administrator shall en-
    20 sure that the aeronautical knowledge and safety test is de-
    21 signed to adequately demonstrate an operator’s—
    22 ‘‘(1) understanding of aeronautical safety
    23 knowledge, as applicable; and
    24 ‘‘(2) knowledge of Federal Aviation Administra-
    25 tion regulations and requirements pertaining to the
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 91 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 operation of an unmanned aircraft system in the na-
    2 tional airspace system.
    4 ‘‘(1) IN GENERAL.—Each operator of an un-
    5 manned aircraft system described under subsection
    6 (a) shall maintain and make available for inspection,
    7 upon request by the Administrator or a Federal,
    8 State, or local law enforcement officer, a record of
    9 compliance with this section through—
    10 ‘‘(A) an identification number, issued by
    11 the Federal Aviation Administration certifying
    12 passage of the aeronautical knowledge and safe-
    13 ty test;
    14 ‘‘(B) if the individual has authority to op-
    15 erate an unmanned aircraft system under other
    16 Federal law, the requisite proof of authority
    17 under that law; or
    18 ‘‘(C) an airmen certificate issued under
    19 section 44703.
    20 ‘‘(2) COORDINATION.—The Administrator may
    21 coordinate the identification number under para-
    22 graph (1)(A) with an operator’s registration number
    23 to the extent practicable.
    24 ‘‘(3) LIMITATION.—No fine or penalty may be
    25 imposed for the initial failure of an operator of an
    March 9, 2016 (3:32 p.m.) 92 S:\LEGCNSL\LEXA\DOR15\AV\BILL\TNFAARA.3S.xml
    1 unmanned aircraft system to comply with paragraph
    2 (1) unless the Administrator finds that the conduct
    3 of the operator actually posed a risk to the national
    4 airspace system.’’.

  164. With regard to the differing view of drones vs “stick built” kits and their value, I have been building balsa since the 60’s, flew rc heli’s when they first became affordable, then better batteries moved things toward electric power very quickly. I even spent a lot of time in foamys, throwing together all kinds of creations. All of these variations of rc flying were a blast. Since I saw the first tricopter I knew this was were a lot of modelers were going to head, including myself. Gyros were first rigged to do a primitive stabilization. Then we strapped on some cheap security cameras and all of a sudden we were in the sky with the plane. We all flew from the ground viewpoint but now there was the opportunity to view rc flying “from the cockpit”. Of course this is going to draw a huge following. You would be nuts not to love being able to float around and viewing the landscape, sunsets etc. But with the larger masses come the larger number of irresponsible flyers doing stupid things just because they can. Thats life in the 21st century, get used to it. Go to youtube and you can find hundreds of videos of people doing stupid dangerous things with just about anything that has wings or wheels. Bottom line is the AMA has been around forever and has seen many evolutions in the hobby. I don’t think quads are any more “dangerous” than things like turbine powered planes or giant scales. Its all about who is using them. I really believe most of the problems have been created by the media but thats history. All we can do now is cross fngers and hope for the best as I don’t think regulation of anything has ever decreased, espeically when the governments involved.

  165. All I can say about the country being set up to pass laws carefully, slowly and deliberately, is that it is only the case when the law is not something really huge and far reaching like the ACA which was over 2,000 pages long and rammed through in hours in the dead of night – don’t you remember: “You have to pass the bill before you can find out what’s in it.”? Solid gold proof that IF they REALLY want to do something in congress, it can occur completely under the radar and in no time at all… There is only all this process (red tape) and fancy graphics to try and explain it to us idiots when it is something we the “little people” really need – When is this madness going to end?

    1. Well said ALB – well said indeed. What scares them ( those toying with these laws and regulations ) is the fact that the public may actually know more or better than them. I thought this country was founded on the principles of freedom from the royal ( UK ) monarchy. Seems that there has been a 360-degree turn back to it without actually admitting it.

Comments are closed.