Hot Tips!

Here is a link to a series of short videos on YouTube called Hot Tips. Take a look and see what you can you can use.


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order by the president, Bill Rakozy, at approximately 7:03 PM in room 351 of the Edina Community Center.

There were five visitors present. Jim Larson and his friend Ernie and three members of MARCEE were present as well. President Tim Folkenson, Vice-president Chad Towle, and Membership Chair Rich Ness. Rich has been a member of MRCSS for about a year, but has been unable to attend meetings. Thanks for joining us.


Treasurer Jack Perecman stated, “The checkbook is bulging”.

Secretary Dave Engleson was absent; Jim Ladwig substituted.

Field Safety: Augie McKibben had nothing to report.

Launch Boss: Jack Perecman was absent.

Slope: Emil Weiler is researching historical wind patterns at Hager City for a Club Slope Day. Bill Brown volunteered to talk to the landowners about a portable toilet at the Hager City slope site.

Club Building Projects: Ed Berris reported that several gliders have been or will be completed as a result of the sessions at Washburn HS, and that those attending learned much from each other.

LSF Club Coordinator: Bill Rakozy had no report.

Summer Picnic: Dave Fisher was not present.

Aero Tow: Bill Jones was out of town on business. Electric Assisted Soaring: Dave Edmonson was not present.

Web Site: Ro Hart was not present. Someone observed that the Open House is not posted on the web site.

Membership: Bob Waldridge said about 75 have renewed their membership for 2003. A roster and a frequency chart were circulated for review and corrections.

Contest Schedule: In Jack Perecman’s absence, Augie passed around a prospective schedule, with an event on the Saturday after each monthly meeting. Responses are invited by email. Bill Rakozy will make his laptop computer available for contest records.

Advanced Pilot Instruction: John Borlaug was not present. Dave DeGroot was recommended as a good instructor, and it is expected there will be a committee meeting soon. Bill Rakozy suggested there be a grading system set up to establish member ability, so not all are flying as beginners. There was also a suggestion that teams, made up of an intermediate flyer and a beginner, have an event to compete in.

Flying Site Committee: Dave Fisher and Dale Erickson were not present. Seeking AMA funding for a permanent site was discussed. Size needs to be at least 1000 feet x 1000 feet, or 27 acres. The MARCEE club might be interested in joining the effort to buy a field. It was suggested that the MMAC free flight club might also be interested. More clubs would help involve AMA in the financing. An estimate was made that 200 members at $100 per year could swing a deal for 27 acres.

Old Business

Club Open House: The annual Open House is scheduled for this Sunday, March 23 from 12:00 to 4:30 at Ridgedale Library. Ed Berris, Larry Sorenson and Kevin Kavaney volunteered their help for displays.

There will be a joint flying event with MARCEE this summer. Details to be worked out soon.

New Business

Should MRCSS run a regional get-together this summer? Flyers from Iowa and Wisconsin could be expected. AMA sanction should be obtained. A weekend date will be decided at our April meeting.


Larry Sorenson showed some solderless battery packs he is using. Hardware for these packs are sold by Model Electronics Corporation and advertised in Sailplane and Electric Magazine. They consist of two clear plastic tubes, two end caps, and two threaded rods, which provide the force to make good contact between cells. Kits are available for either sub-C cells or “Zagi packs”. Battery resistance is slightly higher than with soldering, but cell damage due to soldering heat is avoided.

Greg Stewart then showed how he solders battery packs together, and also gave some facts on rechargeable cells. Greg buys his cells locally at Hub Hobby or Hobby Warehouse, rather than by mail order, since he does not use large quantities. In addition to the familiar nickel-cadmium cells, there now are nickel-metal-hydride and lithium polymer cells. NiMH batteries have about twice the charge capacity in a given case size, but are more likely to be damaged by overheating and too much current. Charging of Ni-Cd should be at 3 to 5 times the rated capacity of the cell. (A 270 mAh cell can be charged at up to 0.8 or 1.3 amperes). Typical charge is at 3C, which will take about 20 minutes. NiMH charging can be done at 1C to 2C, for about 30 minutes to one hour.

The newest common technology is lithium polymer cells. These are very small and light, but are limited in the current they can handle. They also have a different voltage per cell – about 3.5 volts rather than 1.2 volts.

Greg demonstrated the soldering technique by building a 50 mAh receiver pack for Augie, with three cells side-by-side and the fourth on top in one of the grooves. These should be charged at about 0.1 amperes to prolong their life. Greg holds the cells together with hot glue (quick and dirty) or with tape. Connections between cells are made with a solder braid, or with insulated wire. Use a large enough iron that soldering can be done quickly. Each heating does some damage to the cell.

Show and Tell

Willie Allshouse showed the sailplane he built in the recent workshop sessions at WHS. The fuselage is glass, the wing is obechi over a foam core, with spar. Carbon fiber reinforcement was used at the trailing edge before the obechi was epoxied and vacuumbagged to the core. Aileron servo pockets were routered using guides made by Jack Perecman. Willie made his tail removable with two tee nuts in the stab, and used a basswood wedge (tapering from 0 in. to 5/16 in.) under the stabilizer for proper stab incidence. The tail is filleted with West System Fairing Compound, which had a precuring consistency of thick peanut butter. Sanding was quick and easy. Pushrods need to be installed before it flies.

Paul Johnson discussed the Bug and the Carbon Bug, which were on display tonight. Many members are buying the Carbon Bug kits from Ed, which does not include the tip launch peg. Paul has posted pictures of the building of the Carbon Bug on the Yahoo group photo section.

Ib Jensen showed his Sierra 2.5 meter $200 European-built ARF from Art Hobby. This is a slope or thermal sailplane and comes with control outlines scored and ruddervators hinged. Ib plans to hot-glue the nose shell in place. A nose cone then slips over that.

Bob Waldridge also showed a $200 ARF, but the Just Right model comes with a S400 motor.

Thanks for filling in Jim!