Survey for ALL NAR members with regards to NAR COMPETITION

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Peartree

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I assumed that someone was. My point is that I used to, regularly, hear about it. Other clubs would invite our club, and our club would forward those invitations to their members. As I said, I'm not surprised that someone is holding contest launches, I'm surprised that, unlike in the past, I pretty much never hear about it. I don't know if that was caused by the change in competition rules or not, but it's definitely different than it was.
 

Ez2cDave

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I assumed that someone was. My point is that I used to, regularly, hear about it. Other clubs would invite our club, and our club would forward those invitations to their members. As I said, I'm not surprised that someone is holding contest launches, I'm surprised that, unlike in the past, I pretty much never hear about it. I don't know if that was caused by the change in competition rules or not, but it's definitely different than it was.
In all fairness, while that two-page lists looks impressive, those contest are only being hosted by 5 or 6 Sections across the entire USA.

Also, most of them are not "dedicated" contest launches . . . "You can fly NRC events, if you want to, but you have to supply your own Flight Cards, etc. ", according to at least one Club. Essentially, youcan fly NRC events, and send the results in to NAR, yourself . . . Some "competition" - LOL !

Dave F.
 

cwbullet

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completed the form yesterday.
 

Ez2cDave

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And just like that, 80% of NAR sections convert to TRA.
Answer this . . . "What keeps an NAR Section an NAR Section, anyway ?" ( What "incentivizes" a Club to join NAR over Tripoli ? )

Remember, Tripoli isn't as "child-friendly", for the most part, nor do they "play well" with a ton of LPR launches and kids running after rockets, all the time . . . I can just see a typical Prefect with 50 - 70 Boy Scouts running all over the place - LOL !

Dave F.
 

heada

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Answer this . . . "What keeps an NAR Section an NAR Section, anyway ?" ( What "incentivizes" a Club to join NAR over Tripoli ? )

Remember, Tripoli isn't as "child-friendly", for the most part, nor do they "play well" with a ton of LPR launches and kids running after rockets, all the time . . . I can just see a typical Prefect with 50 - 70 Boy Scouts running all over the place - LOL !

Dave F.
We can take this to a different thread if you'd like, to help keep this one clean. Both NAR and TRA support launches from MMX to O and anyone can attend either and launch commercial motors. I still contend that if things are made mandatory that not everyone wants, then those people will migrate to a group that better fits their needs. I'm a member of 2 different NAR sections and neither of them have held competition in decades. If NAR made competition mandatory then both of those sections would vanish.
 

Ez2cDave

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I'm a member of 2 different NAR sections and neither of them have held competition in decades. If NAR made competition mandatory then both of those sections would vanish.
Aaron,

Has that discussion actually been had in those two Sections ? Have they actually said "if we have to fly NAR Competition, we'll "close up shop" ?

Personally, I think that Tripoli should actively embrace Competition, also . . . Both in LPR / MPR and in HPR !

Dave F.
 
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UhClem

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I have no interest in the new NRC contest system which, it was claimed, would attract more participants.

To test that, I added a NRC contest to the monthly launch that I host. (Publicized via the NAR calander and DARS mailing list.) At least till COVID terminated that sort of thing. I never saw this flood of new contestants.

Once the COVID situation settles out I will do it again but I don't expect much different results.
 

Ez2cDave

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I have no interest in the new NRC contest system which, it was claimed, would attract more participants.
Agreed, 100% . . . I much preferred the original Pink Book events, but NAR killed that and now we are stuck with what we have, unfortunately.

Dave F.
 

GuyNoir

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To test that, I added a NRC contest to the monthly launch that I host.
I appreciate scheduling the launch, but I think it takes more effort to promote NRC. If people aren't familiar with it, someone has to show the way. When it was introduced, I made a commitment to not only schedule, but actually fly some events at every launch we had. It was that flying that "broke the ice". Once someone sees it, it's almost inevitable that they'll say "well, I can do better than THAT!"
 

Ez2cDave

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I appreciate scheduling the launch, but I think it takes more effort to promote NRC. If people aren't familiar with it, someone has to show the way. When it was introduced, I made a commitment to not only schedule, but actually fly some events at every launch we had. It was that flying that "broke the ice". Once someone sees it, it's almost inevitable that they'll say "well, I can do better than THAT!"
PRECISELY . . . LEAD by EXAMPLE ! ! !

Dave F.
 

cwbullet

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I would like to see a weight or diameter class to records. Instead of using "handicap" records, use the diameter of the rocket. Having G records that go from minimum diameter to "x" diameter would allow smaller field to participate in altitude records.

Just an idea.
 

n27sb

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I
I would like to see a weight or diameter class to records. Instead of using "handicap" records, use the diameter of the rocket. Having G records that go from minimum diameter to "x" diameter would allow smaller field to participate in altitude records.

Just an idea.
I think I understand CW but can you expand on that idea.
 

UhClem

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I appreciate scheduling the launch, but I think it takes more effort to promote NRC.
If it needs to be promoted, there should have been a plan presented as part of the NRC proposal. Along with an explanation for why that promotion wouldn't have the same effect with the existing rules.
 

cwbullet

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I

I think I understand CW but can you expand on that idea.
I have been reading about smaller fields and handicap records. Not all fields are able to compete with altitude or speed records and need to "governor" the flight with a larger or heavier rocket in order to keep them on the field. I think there may be a better way to do this. If we had different records based on the diameter or weight of the rocket (I prefer diameter), then it would allow smaller fields to have altitude and speed records.

For example, G-motors might have a minimum diameter record, 38mm(1.5"), 54mm(2"), 76mm(3"), 98mm(4"), and 150mm(6") diameter record.

I really think I am going to do something like this on our field to encourage participation.

Does this explain what I am talking about?
 

n27sb

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I have been reading about smaller fields and handicap records. Not all fields are able to compete with altitude or speed records and need to "governor" the flight with a larger or heavier rocket in order to keep them on the field. I think there may be a better way to do this. If we had different records based on the diameter or weight of the rocket (I prefer diameter), then it would allow smaller fields to have altitude and speed records.

For example, G-motors might have a minimum diameter record, 38mm(1.5"), 54mm(2"), 76mm(3"), 98mm(4"), and 150mm(6") diameter record.

I really think I am going to do something like this on our field to encourage participation.

Does this explain what I am talking about?
Sure. Sounds like the Tripoli Handicap but would allow for a choice of diameters and no minimum length.
I like it.
 

Gus

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"NAR competition is old, boring, and low tech."

Fly an Estes 1/4A motor with a recording altimeter to 400 feet.

Simple, right?

Not so much.

Anyone can go higher with a bigger motor. Getting maximum performance out of a specified motor is hard, often really hard. That's what makes it so interesting to those of us who like to compete.
 

Ez2cDave

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I would like to see a weight or diameter class to records. Instead of using "handicap" records, use the diameter of the rocket. Having G records that go from minimum diameter to "x" diameter would allow smaller field to participate in altitude records.

Just an idea.
I have been reading about smaller fields and handicap records. Not all fields are able to compete with altitude or speed records and need to "governor" the flight with a larger or heavier rocket in order to keep them on the field. I think there may be a better way to do this. If we had different records based on the diameter or weight of the rocket (I prefer diameter), then it would allow smaller fields to have altitude and speed records.

For example, G-motors might have a minimum diameter record, 38mm(1.5"), 54mm(2"), 76mm(3"), 98mm(4"), and 150mm(6") diameter record.

I really think I am going to do something like this on our field to encourage participation.

Does this explain what I am talking about?
Chuck,

FAI / WSMC Competition already uses large diameter airframes ( mainly for great visibility ) . . .

BUT, don't be deceived, it allows room for HUGE chutes and streamers. Durations are INSANE !

They use EXOTIC materials to construct those and, if you DON'T, you have ZERO chance of winning !

Dave F.

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mjennings

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I've thought about competing, my section does have a few contest fliers. Why I haven't is the whole point of contest seems to be to go to NARAMs that isn't going to be in my budget anytime soon, so the incentive is very low to try.

I said so in the survey. I love reading the NARAM, FAI, and TARC reports in Sport Rocketry. Gave some interesting ideas, but competing is ultimately not practical for me.
 

Ez2cDave

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I've thought about competing, my section does have a few contest fliers. Why I haven't is the whole point of contest seems to be to go to NARAMs that isn't going to be in my budget anytime soon, so the incentive is very low to try.
Interesting . . . Good idea . . . Competition should not be "all about going to NARAM".

Rather, there could be Section Champions. County Champions, State Champions, Regional Champions, etc, etc, etc !

Dave F.
 

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If it needs to be promoted, there should have been a plan presented as part of the NRC proposal.
I think the NAR Board recognized that any competition changes would not spring forth, fully formed, after the committee's work was complete. IMHO, right now, the negative voices of those opposed to the change swamp those of us who find NRC competition easier, both for its flying and administrative aspects. YMMV.
 

Peartree

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I think the NAR Board recognized that any competition changes would not spring forth, fully formed, after the committee's work was complete. IMHO, right now, the negative voices of those opposed to the change swamp those of us who find NRC competition easier, both for its flying and administrative aspects. YMMV.
Some of us, I think, are not trying to deliberately be "negative voices" but wonder how the changes were supposed to accomplish the stated goals, and the questions being asked in the survey seem to indicate that they haven't. Your statement above was that the changes made the "NRC competition easier, both for its flying and administrative aspects." I'm more than happy to take your word for that. But I thought the goals were to make the competition more accessible, more popular among members, increase participation, and attract new, younger, participants. The important question is, if these were our goals, did the changes have the desired effect?
 

RocketRev

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I tried NAR competitions 20 plus years ago back in the Pink Book days. One of the guys in the club I was in saw me fly a helicopter recovery rocket at a regular old launch. He said, you ought to come fly in the competition on whatever date it was. So I went and took my helicopter recovery rocket with me.

There was plenty of competition flights in lots of categories. I was a complete "noob" (is there an official spelling for this? newb? neub?) to competitions so I did what the guys said to do as I was mostly in over my head with all the various acronym categories. I only entered the helicopter recovery competition. I flew my helicopter recovery rocket (an extremely self modified Heli-Cat that came down in one piece on just the rotors) and got 50 some seconds from my flight. The other guys got 60 to 70 seconds out of their helicopter designs, so I figured I'd lost. I hung around for a while to watch the other competitions and accidentally overheard one of the guys saying that he'd gotten his two flights in for whatever parachute duration he was in to add the scores together for his 2nd place total. I went and asked the club president about adding the times together and he said that was what was in the rules. So I asked if that was the case for the helicopter recovery and he said yes.

The guys who got their 60-70 second helicopter durations did so by adding two flights together and they neglected to mention that to me when they told me better luck next time. So I put another motor in my helicopter recovery rocket and got another 50 plus second flight and I won the helicopter recovery contest at that local club hands down as they say, and never flew another competition again. I've got the blue ribbon someplace or other.

I also took the survey. For the many questions for which I had no answers I wrote things like, "I don't know" and "No Idea" which the survey took easily enough.

So maybe I'm just an old guy who had a bad experience with some competition flying competitors. But if that attitude of keeping other competitors in the dark in order to win was normal across NAR, then no wonder why the numbers of competitors is dwindling.

Brad, the "Sad for Them" "Rocket Rev.," Wilson
 

prfesser

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I've never competed, haven't been to NARAM in a decade or more, and don't know what others have suggested, but... what kind of prizes are offered? I might be wrong but I suspect that for many rocketnutz, a couple of mid-priced kits, some 18/24/29mm hardware, or a homemade "Designer's special" of donated parts (does anyone EVER have enough rocket parts?) would provide greater incentive to participate than a ribbon or a trophy.

Surely there are a number of manufacturers/vendors who would be willing to provide prizes. Donations would best be collected some months in advance, in order to sort out appropriate prizes for 1st, 2nd, 3rd place in each event. (Or give 1st place first choice among several items, 2nd place gets second choice, etc.)

Best -- Terry
 

JPalmer621

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My local group KOSMO 427 hosts a two day competition launch each June. We usually have 5-6 events, most are along the lines of national competition but not always. The top 3 in each contest get a ribbon ( white, red and blue) The winner in each contest gets a $5 Subway card. It is not much but it makes it fun. We usually get about 5-10 competitors. Sport flyers are also welcome
 

James Duffy

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FAI / WSMC Competition already uses large diameter airframes ( mainly for great visibility ) . . .

BUT, don't be deceived, it allows room for HUGE chutes and streamers. Durations are INSANE !

They use EXOTIC materials to construct those and, if you DON'T, you have ZERO chance of winning !
While visibility is a secondary reason for the 40mm airframes used in FAI comp, the main reason is to increase drag and reduce performance. Still, as you note, the durations can be crazy.

FAI 40mm airframes are usually built out of fiberglass and Japanese tissue. A perfectly competitive model can also be constructed from vellum, however.

It is worth noting that US participation in FAI competition has never been higher. That may be a contributing factor in the recent decline in NAR competition participation.

James
 

Ez2cDave

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It is worth noting that US participation in FAI competition has never been higher. That may be a contributing factor in the recent decline in NAR competition participation.
Personally, I think that many Sections have an "HPR Uber Alles" mentality and look at NAR Competition as being a "PITA" and a "waste of flying time", as Jim Scarpine posted.

I believe that mindset is WRONG and that we need to encourage kids to fly NAR Competition, teach them the skills to scratch-build and design their own models . . . Create a "drive to succeed", in their young minds !

Dave F.
 

LW Bercini

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Personally, I think that many Sections have an "HPR Uber Alles" mentality
Dave F.
My personal experience is the same. Not only does it discourage competition, but it also suppresses any other form of creativity that does not conform to the HPR dogma.

There is this pervasive attitude of, "Go ahead and play with your Estes toys and let us know when you are ready for REAL rocketry"
 

Ez2cDave

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So step up to the plate & take the lead big guy!

ONE person is NOT the solution to this situation and you KNOW it, Tim ( at least I hope you do ) . . .

If it were me, NAR would REQUIRE Sections to hold Multi-Event Competition, 3-4 times per year. If the HPR "elites" don't like that, they need to remember where they started out in Rocketry ( most likely Estes BP motors ). If they want to exclude NAR Competition, strictly for selfish reasons, that is pretty petty !

Also, there would be an NAR program that prepares kids for larger rockets ( like the old Estes "EAC" & NARTREK, but with actual instruction, awards, and rewards . . . Sort of a "Pre-Certification" program, if you will ). It would be steeped in NAR Competition events, from day one !

Start them early . . . Get involved yourselves . . . Pay it forward and make Rocketry grow ( for everyone ).

Dave F.
 
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