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  1. WilsonFlyer

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    OK. So I've been quiet about this since I got here, but I have to ask, and this is going to likely be one of those "I'm the only one in the room that thinks this." posts just so you know I know that going in.

    So here goes...

    I find it interesting that most seem to encourage and even applaud the practice of extending the range of their aircraft well beyond VLOS when that practice is clearly against FAA regulations. (Fly for Fun)

    It's equally entertaining to watch the hypocrisy surrounding the perception that the FAA somehow forbids RC flights beyond 400' AGL. Many people here (and it's not just here) get self-righteous and almost indignant when it comes to their perception that it is suddenly their job to self-regulate a rule that technically doesn't even exist but is merely a suggestion for safe flying. (FAA Acknowledges AMA as a CBO and our Safety Program | AMA Government Relations Blog)

    So seriously. What gives here? Help me understand why the one that clearly violates the law is actually encouraged and applauded and the one that's gray, at best, people are ridiculed and chastised for.

    I don't get it.
     
  2. demigaro

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    Lol
     
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  3. WilsonFlyer

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    Hell, adding powered boosters is clearly (I think) a violation of FCC regulations. Now we've got two **** government agencies involved. They'd never got out of each other's way! :D
     
  4. WilsonFlyer

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    "But it's not safe to fly above 400' AGL because it's against the law and there are airplanes up there!"

    You don't have a clue what's in the air a mile beyond that tree line and you fly over there! :D

    Well? It's the truth!
     
  5. tcope

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    Perhaps some people feel it's more dangerous to fly in what may be the path of an manned aircraft (for example, at 1500') then simply out of sight (for example, at 50' but 800' away). What are the chances of hitting an aircraft at 50'?
     
  6. WilsonFlyer

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    With all due respect, you don't get to "feel." I don't even have to argue with that one.

    I may "feel like" the speed limit ought to be 85 on the Interstate but that won't hold up in a court of law.

    In answer to your question, how many people do you really think are flying at 50' AGL 2 miles away? Seriously? That dog won't hunt. You wouldn't have a clue that there's a terrible accident at an intersection and that a medical helicopter evac was underway. Argue that one if you want to make your argument.

    50 feet at 800 feet downrange? Due respect, you can do better than that because we both know that's not what going here. Not by a long stretch (pun intended).
     
  7. tcope

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    I'm sorry, I thought you asked for an opinion as to what other people _might_ think.

    if the speed limit was 85 or higher then yes it would. Even you admitted that VLOS and 400' wee recommendations (that is, legal).

    In answer to your question, how many people do you really think are flying at 50' AGL 2 miles away? Seriously? That dog won't hunt. You wouldn't have a clue that there's a terrible accident at an intersection and that a medical helicopter evac was underway. Argue that one if you want to make your argument.[/QUOTE]

    No thank you.. I don't really feel like starting an argument with someone who asked for opinions. Sounds like yet another bitching thread. Have a nice day.
     
  8. WilsonFlyer

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    VLOS is the law. 400' is not a law. 400' is a recommended safety ceiling that has exceptions. There are NO exceptions to LOS.

    I'm not bitching. I'm just sick of seeing people blessed out for flying above 400' when flying 3 miles away from your TX is clearly against the law and yet most everyone seems to think that's wonderful. I don't get it. Actually, it's the bitching that I'm trying to stop.
     
  9. brothers

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    Enabling "extra channels" (and then using them) is also against FCC Part 15 rules. However, some of us (myself included) can legally operate under Part 97 on certain channels, and run up to 1500 watts (that's not a typo). We are called amateur radio operators or hams, and have passed FCC exams to obtain our licenses.

    - N1DB
     
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  10. Pharm

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    Now, Wilson, you and I both know that ain't gonna happen! ;)
     
  11. jwt873

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    I'm in Canada, but many of the laws are similar.. In the U.S. the maximum transmitter power allowed is 1 Watt. This can be boosted by an antenna with gain, but the legal effective radiated power is a maximum of 3 Watts.

    As you point out, with a ham license you're allowed much more power. Hams actually talk to other hams half way around the world by bouncing the 2.4 Ghz signals off the surface of the moon. How's that for range :)

    -VE4CY
     
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  12. WilsonFlyer

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    And I have mine also but we are the exception here doing this and not the rule. :)
     
  13. WilsonFlyer

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    For the record, I'll never put amps on mine. I see no need for my applications.

    I may do the antenna mod one day, but if mine gets out of my LOS, I bring it back where I can see it. I like to know where it is such that I can see it. I have done some pretty good distances too, but they are at night when I can see the lights further than I can see the craft in the daytime. Personally, I can also see a heck of a lot better what's going on around me at night too.
     
  14. tcope

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    You may also see this issue because some people don't fully understand what the actual regulations are and what are recommendations.

    For example.... can you please send me a link to the FAA regulation that require a person to fly VLOS. I'll wait. Thanks!
     
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  15. tcope

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    Let me add to my last post...

    The FAA regulations are confusing and lacking in the least. Here is information _directly_ from the FAA:

    Do I need permission from the FAA to fly a UAS for recreation or as a hobby?
    There are two ways for recreational or hobby UAS fliers to operate in the national airspace system in accordance with the law and/or FAA regulations. Each of the two options has specific requirements that the UAS operator must follow. The decision as to which option to follow is up to the individual operator.

    Option #1. Fly in accordance with the Special Rule for Model Aircraft (Public Law 112-95 Section 336). Under this rule, operators must:

    • Fly for hobby or recreational purposes only
    • Follow a community-based set of safety guidelines
    • Fly the UAS within visual line-of-sight
    • Give way to manned aircraft
    • Provide prior notification to the airport and air traffic control tower, if one is present, when flying within 5 miles of an airport
    • Fly UAS that weigh no more than 55 lbs. unless certified by a community-based organization
    • Register the aircraft (UAS over 0.55 lbs. and less than 55 lbs. can be registered online at registermyuas.faa.gov; UAS 55 lbs. or greater must be registered through the FAA's paper-based process)

    So the FAA is really stating that a hobby flyer needs to abide by Section 336 in order to fly. In the section listed above they _attempt_ to outline those requirements. But lets actually take a look at the section specifically to see how it reads:


    SEC. 336. SPECIAL RULE FOR MODEL AIRCRAFT.

    (a) IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law

    relating to the incorporation of unmanned aircraft systems into

    Federal Aviation Administration plans and policies, including this

    subtitle, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration

    may not promulgate any rule or regulation regarding a model

    aircraft, or an aircraft being developed as a model aircraft, if—

    (1) the aircraft is flown strictly for hobby or recreational

    use;

    (2) the aircraft is operated in accordance with a community based

    set of safety guidelines and within the programming

    of a nationwide community-based organization;

    (3) the aircraft is limited to not more than 55 pounds

    unless otherwise certified through a design, construction,

    inspection, flight test, and operational safety program administered

    by a community-based organization;

    (4) the aircraft is operated in a manner that does not

    interfere with and gives way to any manned aircraft; and

    (5) when flown within 5 miles of an airport, the operator

    of the aircraft provides the airport operator and the airport

    air traffic control tower (when an air traffic facility is located

    at the airport) with prior notice of the operation (model aircraft

    operators flying from a permanent location within 5 miles of

    an airport should establish a mutually-agreed upon operating

    procedure with the airport operator and the airport air traffic

    control tower (when an air traffic facility is located at the

    airport)).

    (b) STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION.—Nothing in this section shall

    be construed to limit the authority of the Administrator to pursue

    enforcement action against persons operating model aircraft who

    endanger the safety of the national airspace system.

    (c) MODEL AIRCRAFT DEFINED.—In this section, the term ‘‘model

    aircraft’’ means an unmanned aircraft that is—

    (1) capable of sustained flight in the atmosphere;

    (2) flown within visual line of sight of the person operating


    the aircraft; and

    (3) flown for hobby or recreational purposes.


    The big issue with this is that flying VLOS is not mention as a limitation, it's contained in the definition of "model aircraft". So if a person does not fly VLOS then what they are using is not a "model aircraft" under this Section. IMHO, someone screwed this up. If they wanted to make it part of the limitations/regulations, they should have included it in that section and not part of a definition. If you look elsewhere (you included a link) the FAA considers flying VLOS as a "guideline"... as it does for flying 400' or less. So is it part of the regulation, is it a definition of model aircraft, is it a "guideline" same as 400', some or all three?

    Now back to your question about why some people ignore the VLOS "rule" and not the 400' recommendation. You wanted to know why some people ignore VLOS and recommend against 400'.

    You wanted facts... it may be because some people don't think flying VLOS is part of the actual restrictions. I'd certainly argue that. I'd also say that flying beyond VLOS poses very little threat of harm to anyone.

    If you want to accomplish something by bring this up... you won't. Not knocking your post. Just saying people are still going to preach 400' every chance they get. I just skip those threads/posts these days.
     
  16. USsUASDriver

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    The structure of the law (for hobbyist use) contributes to confusion, but there is reason behind including the VLOS statement in the definition of "Model Aircraft." What it means, more broadly, is that if you are flying beyond VLOS, you are not flying a "Model Aircraft," and, therefore, unless you are flying under some other rule or exemption, you are not flying in an FAA authorized manner (i.e. illegally). My 2 cents on the classic FAA 'clear as mud' rules structure.
     
  17. USsUASDriver

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    As others have noted, the 400' is not spelled out as a specific restriction for non-commercial/hobbyist flying. FAA Advisory Circular AC 91-57A under 6. MODEL AIRCRAFT OPERATIONS simply states "e. Model aircraft operators should follow best practices including limiting operations to 400 feet above ground level (AGL)" So, you can probably 'legally' go higher, but you could open yourself up to the old standby 'reckless' flying enforcement - especially if you end up flying in controlled airspace (B, C, D, E).