How close to a major airport ? ? ? ?

Discussion in 'Low Power Rocketry (LPR)' started by spacecowboy, Oct 20, 2003.

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  1. Oct 20, 2003 #1

    spacecowboy

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    Just how close to a major airport can we fly ????

    There is a gigantic field about 4 miles from the Austin airport. It's probably 1/2 mi X 1/2 mi. I swear, you'd have to try REAL hard to lose a bird, even a staged roc w/o vented chutes.

    Something tells me I need to keep looking, a federal beef is the last thing I need right now.
     
  2. Oct 20, 2003 #2

    Micromeister

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    5 miles from the nearest airport, ANY airport regardless of size. are you sure that great field is only 4 miles out?
     
  3. Oct 20, 2003 #3

    rstaff3

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    It's may be worth verifying the distance. Sometimes it is difficult to judge the 'as the bird fly's' distance when you drive from point A to point B.
     
  4. Oct 20, 2003 #4

    sandman

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    Well, I know the rule about being 5 mile from any airport but to tell you the truth. I've flown AT a lot of aitports.

    I have flown rocket in conjuction WITH R/C aircraft, Ultra Lights and full size Airplanes at airports.

    Last spring I went to the TARC regional flyoff at the Caro, Michigan airport. The airport operator was on a hand held radio the whole time to verify air and ground control.

    Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't it up to the discression of the airport operator?

    Also isn't Geneseo, NY's flying field an airport? That was the location for NARAM 43 and LDRS next summer?

    Seems like a "flexable" rule to me. Nothing etched in concrete.

    sandman
     
  5. Oct 20, 2003 #5

    DPatell

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    Geneseo is the 1941 Historical Aircraft Groups's airport. I don't know if it is technically considered an "Airport," as it's privately owned. Planes fly in and out from the HAG, and the launches are paused while they lift off and land. The "airport" does not have incoming flights from other airports, so it is not nearly as congested as any normal airport, and flights are few and far between.
     
  6. Oct 20, 2003 #6

    rstaff3

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    If I remember correctly, it's the FAA that has to waive any of their rules. Could be that if the airport manager makes the phone call, the FCC probably will listen.
     
  7. Oct 20, 2003 #7

    rstaff3

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    http://ecfr1.access.gpo.gov/otcgi/c...UBSET=SUBSET&FROM=1&SIZE=10&ITEM=1#Sec. 101.3

    Man that may take some cutting and pasting! (nope it works)

    The way I read it, the FAA regs are not applicable to model rockets (up to 1 lb, et, etc). However, the rocket can't pose a hazard to any 'other aircraft'. What poses a hazard is certainly up to interpretation.

    Large model rockets have more detailed requirements, notifications, etc. And HPR required a waiver.

    If it were me I'd stay 5 mi away unless I got the ok from the airport manager.
     
  8. Oct 20, 2003 #8

    powderburner

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    I think you may be able to fly model rockets closer than 5 miles to an airport. Trick is, the rules say you have to notify the airport operator (probably with description of when/where/how long/how high) and get his permission. Almost certainly, high power and/or high altitude rockets would be out of the question.

    It would be a good idea to check out the applicable Federal Air Regulations and get it right. No one wants to see you finish you launch while vacationing in Leavenworth.
     
  9. Oct 20, 2003 #9

    shockwaveriderz

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    Model Rockets - No Restrictions
    Per NFPA 1122 and FAR 101, model rockets which weigh less than one (1) pound (453 grams) at launch
    are not restricted in any way except in areas and situations where they pose a threat to aircraft. However,
    these rockets must contain less than 113 grams of total fuel. Some “H” engines contain less than 113
    grams of fuel, however, you need at least a level one high power certification from NAR or TRA to
    purchase and use H motors.
    In accordance with the safety codes, these rockets must use only pre-manufactured, solid propellant
    motors, and do not use metal body tubes, nose cones or fins. Approved materials are paper, wood, and
    breakable plastic. Metal is allowed only for minor, non-structural uses (i.e. a motor hook.)

    Now that doesn't mean you're not going to get a visit from say the HSA, the FBI,etc etc


    Sec. 101.1 Applicability.
    (a) This part prescribes rules governing the operation in the United
    States, of the following:

    (3) Any unmanned rocket except:

    (ii) Model rockets:
    (a) Using not more than four ounces of propellant;
    (b) Using a slow-burning propellant;
    (c) Made of paper, wood, or breakable plastic, containing no substantial metal parts and weighing not more than 16 ounces, including the propellant;
    and
    (d) Operated in a manner that does not create a hazard to persons, property, or other aircraft.

    Its the last part that can and will send you to jail or get you shut down or arrested for questioning.....that 4 miles better not be right down the landing or takeoff pipeline....


    I've attached a .pdf that explains what you need to do for MR/LMR and HPR ...
     
  10. Oct 20, 2003 #10

    sandman

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    Maybe the key word is "MAJOR" airport!

    Most of ther ones I've flown from were "rural" grass strip affairs...with maybe one paved strip.

    Most every one I've flown at had the airport manager watching and enjoying the fun.

    sandman
     
  11. Oct 20, 2003 #11

    spacecowboy

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    Guys, thanks for the input.
    When I said Austin Airport, I meant Austin ITNL, as in the BIG one.

    Seems to me, the best bet is to head out west where I've been flying, keep hanging my birds in trees at about $10/loss. It beats staring at 6 concrete walls. . . .
     
  12. Oct 20, 2003 #12

    sandman

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    You live in Texas and you can't find any open spaces???:confused:

    Did I miss something here? Have all those westerns on TV lied to me all these years?

    Did them varmit sheep herders win the range wars and fence in a the prime grazin' land?

    Well, I'll be hornswaggled!

    sandman
     
  13. Oct 20, 2003 #13

    rstaff3

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    When I was a kid, our club's launch field was directly across the street from the club president's house. And that field was basically open desert. Just had to walk out far enough from the one line of houses.
     
  14. Oct 20, 2003 #14

    shockwaveriderz

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    spacecowboy:

    I didn't mean to scare you off that field......
    I would first consider getting landownere permission to launch from the field....
    also consider getting a sectional aeronauticla map to see if there are any vectors that go across that field....

    If you get landowner permission to launch from the field, and all you are doing is model rockets and as you launch you look for airplanes before launching, you would probably be okay...

    as a courtesy, although not required, before launching, you could even call the ATC and let them know you are laucnhing models rocket to altitudes of say 2000 ft 4 miles southwest of the airport...

    there is a combo nar section/tra prefecture in austin so I know they have a suitable launch field you could probably use:

    http://www.aarg.org/

    shockie B)
     
  15. Oct 20, 2003 #15

    Stymye

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    Part 101,
    > Subpart C
    > 101.23 Operating limitations
    > No person may operate an unmanned rocket-
    > (c) Within five miles of the boundary of any
    > airport
     
  16. Oct 20, 2003 #16

    Stymye

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    where I live the law seems to make their own rules.LOL
     
  17. Oct 20, 2003 #17

    shockwaveriderz

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    styme:
    FAR 101.1 (3) (ii) exempts model rockets from this unmanned rocket requirement...

    Sec. 101.1 Applicability.
    (a) This part prescribes rules governing the operation in the United
    States, of the following:

    (3) Any unmanned rocket except:

    (ii) Model rockets:
     
  18. Oct 20, 2003 #18

    rstaff3

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    Part 23 is not for <1lb
     
  19. Oct 21, 2003 #19

    crashinj

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    Ultralight aircraft can only fly from airports that do not have control towers. If I tried to land at Rapid City's airport they would be coming after me!

    I won't fly anything unless its at least 5 miles from a major airport, be it model rockets, or RC airplanes, or a ultralight, and I fly all 3.

    CrashinJ:D
     
  20. Oct 21, 2003 #20

    Fore Check

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    It's a sad truth, my friend.

    As a "Texan" (I live here, but wasn't born here, nor do I wish to retire and die here) I can give plenty of first-hand witness to all of the "open spaces."

    I guess I'll be hornswaggled too - It's all fenced in. A rocketry enthusiast's dream (short of the stinkin' desert - where I have lived as well and WISHED I was dead) and the parks are 2 acre plots with lots of trees.
     
  21. Oct 21, 2003 #21

    Fore Check

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    The funny thing about this "discussion" is -

    If the cops around here came to a launch to correct a problem (i.e. launching too close to an airport) it would be much more likely that the problem in need of correction was that we (the "launchers") were not blasting away at our rockets with 12 guage shotguns (like skeet shooting) rather than some federal flight regulation.


    "Whatcha firin' up in that thar sky, boy? And whare's yur gun? Y'outta' shells?"
     
  22. Oct 21, 2003 #22

    spacecowboy

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    Ok,
    this is ALL tongue in cheek. . . .pls keep a happy attitude, you misinformed Yankees. . . .

    I've attached a pic of the Hill Country, which is west of Austin where I live. Juniper trees, cactus, and occasional oak, for miles. In the pic, the line of sight is 20 miles or more.

    So now you understand why I hang 'em in the trees. East of Austin is better, and LOL, the clubs in Amarillo, Midland/Odessa probably think RECO is only to keep the birds from breaking when they hit the ground. In those parts, you can stand up, and look 300 miles in any direction.

    I crack me up.
     
  23. Oct 21, 2003 #23

    Micromeister

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    If you plan on flying only model rockets under 1 pound and fly in STRICT accordance with the model rocket safety code, it is possible to fly "anywhere" given common sense. I and my BSA Troop flew for the apron at National Airport in 1988. I don't think i'd try this stunt now but the same rules apply. The trick is in the interperation of the exemption wording, specificly 101.1 3d "operated in a manor that does not create a hazard..." This is the one FAA throws most often. at 4 miles away, if you are out of the main approach flight paths you should be OK.

    ShockieB: Our FAA exemption only applies to daylight operations. I was arrested for flying a 1/2A night illumintated model about 100' agl in 1991 after dark from a location about 3 miles from National. I was not fined for being to close to the Airport but for flying without a waiver after sunset. The fine was $500.00 and I was on probation for 2 years. Lord only knows what the fines and jail time would be today:( I have flown several Micro-maxx night launches from the same location including last December with a waiver... go figure.;)
     
  24. Oct 21, 2003 #24

    powderburner

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    There is lots of property here in Texas. And there are lots of property owners. So, there is lots of barbed wire, and lots of ignorant people who have never seen a model rocket ("Sonny, you wanna do WHAT on my ranch?!?!")

    Apart from the problem of getting access to land around here, there is another problem of avoiding the local residents. Out in the country, many places have big stinky stupid critters with long pointy horns, and some of them are kind of ill-tempered. Even if they are nice, you still have to watch your step. If you are running through the grass and bushes, you are going to collect enough bugs/spiders/stickers/briars/thorns/miscellaneousweeds that instead of cleaning off your clothes at the end of the day it is easier to just throw them away and buy new ones. If you move too quietly across the ground, odds are excellent that you will surprise some slithery little fellow with fangs. And EVERYWHERE you go these days, there are fire ants. Ever step in a fire ant mound?

    I have had good luck with local school yards. There is a huge, mowed, grassy field in Benbrook along Hwy 377. There is an even larger (but much less maintained) area behind the dam at Lake Benbrook on Corp of Engineers/park property, but the winds can be tricky there.

    Usually we shoot our A-B-C stuff out of our side yard. We have enough space to recover most of them and if they land in a neighbor's pasture we know everybody hereabouts and can just hop the fence to get them.
     
  25. Oct 21, 2003 #25

    shockwaveriderz

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    There is lots of property here in Texas. And there are lots of property owners. So, there is lots of barbed wire, and lots of ignorant people who have never seen a model rocket ("Sonny, you wanna do WHAT on my ranch?!?!")

    When you get this response, look upon it as an opportunity to educate that "ignorant" person powderburner..... I also take with me when I approach a prospective landownwer, models and a small packet of explantory information that describes what model rocketry is ....I get the info from Estes at their estes educator site.... I even offer to provide a small demostration if they happen to have the time, if not I ask them If I could come and demo for them.....just because a person may never have heard of a model rocketry does not make them 'ignorant" it just makes them uninformed......

    and whatever you do....don't do the old "bait and switch" routine with landowners.....demo and show model rockets and then show up a week later with a M class 50 lb 10 ft tall hpr monster....that deosn't go down real well with landowners...
     
  26. Oct 21, 2003 #26

    powderburner

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    Do you want to help clean off my boots?
     

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