Approved! 15 Fast Combat starting procedure revised, engine displacement corrected

Voting has approved two changes in the Northwest 15 Fast Combat rules that were proposed by Gene Pape. One changes the match-start procedure to align with current practice; the other is a housekeeping change that clarifies the engine displacement limit.

The 15 Fast rules had been in use since 2014 in "provisional" status, which means that they had never been approved by a ballot. Therefore, the vote on this revision is the first formal approval of the Northwest 15 Fast rules.

Summary of proposals

1. Deletes Section 6.2, which provides a 30-second starting and launching period.
2. Specifies displacement limit at .1526 cu. in., which corresponds with the FAI F2D 2.5 cc specification.

Rationale, as explained by Gene Pape:

The part about no air time for the first 30 seconds was used in other Combat events for a few years after these rules were written.  This has generally been considered as not as good an idea as planned and has been dropped for all other events and was waived at the recent Portland contest.

Current rules list the engine displacement as .15, which is fractionally smaller than the 2.5cc F2D engine size. The event is intended for F2D engines. This change would have no measurable effect on performance.

Discussion period

A thread for discussion of this topic was provided on the Northwest CL Forum.

Effective date

The new rules are in effect as of Aug. 1, 2022.

Voting results

Ballot questions

Proposal 1, deleting Section 6.2, which provides a 30-second starting and launching period. Approved.

Proposal 2, specifying displacement limit at .1526 cu. in. Approved.

Balloting procedure

The vote was conducted via the Northwest Rules approval procedure outlined in the Northwest Rules section.

Approved new rules

New language in red, deleted language in strikethrough

PURPOSE: Northwest .15 Fast Combat is a competition class that is similar to AMA Combat but is intended for FAI F2D-type aircraft powered by .15 engines.

1. All rules for AMA (fast) combat shall apply except as follows:

2. ENGINES: Any engine up to .1526 displacement is permitted. Electric power is allowed.

3. LINES: Type and size are to be per the AMA rulebook. Length shall be 52 feet 3 inches plus or minus 2 inches measured per the AMA rulebook.

4. SPEED LIMIT: All models must adhere to a 100 mph speed limit. No devices capable of varying the speed of the airplane in flight, such as throttles or carburetors adjusted by elevator trim, are allowed.
4.1. Airspeed timing: The event director has the authority at any point in the contest to time an airplane suspected of exceeding the speed limit. If found in violation, that airplane shall not be allowed to compete further until the contestant demonstrates that the airspeed is legal.

The shutoff must be a line tension type. No swing-arm shutoffs will be permitted. At the beginning of each match, the pilot must be able to demonstrate that the shutoff functions correctly.
5.2. The Shutoff will be tested at the beginning of the first match. If the equipment is changed, the CD must be notified and the shutoff retested. Failure to test a new shutoff will result in disqualification from the contest.

6. MATCH PROCEDURE: Flying of matches shall be exactly the same as in AMA Combat, except as follows:
6.1. Contestants must start their own engines. If a contestant is unable to start his engine due to a disability or injury, a mechanic may start the engine, but the contestant must remain outside the circle until the battery clip is removed from the engine. Electric starters are not allowed.
6.2: Matches will last 5 minutes. During the first 30 seconds, no ground time or air time will be accumulated. Officials will signal the start of combat when both planes are in the air and have gone at least two laps and achieved 180-degree separation. A plane that has not launched during the first 30 seconds will begin to accumulate ground-time deductions or air-time points, depending on the scoring system in use.

7. MATCH SCORING: Scoring as per AMA Combat rules. An alternate scoring system may be used by the contest organizers, provided that the deviation from AMA rules is announced in advance of the contest.

8. CONTEST FORMAT: Contests will be run in an elimination format as per AMA rules. An alternate format, such as a series of rounds, may be used provided that the deviation from AMA rules is announced in advance of the contest or that the contestants agree unanimously to a change in format.


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This page was upated July 25, 2022