Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Good Bye 2017!


Join us on Sunday, 11:00 AM, December 31st for the last flight of the year! We will brave a flight in the frigid arctic temperatures, then flee for the warmth and comfort of the Grimes Field airport restaurant for lunch!

Bring something that can land in the snow- or just come to watch the 5 minutes of frigid flying and have lunch with us!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Member Projects

The winter building season is upon us! Check out the new Projects page, where we highlight the building projects our members are working on over the coming months.
Check out Dick K's Stearman build log and others on our projects page.

PSSST! Guess what? The 2018 Events Calendar has been posted!

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Pylon Racing Final

The pylon racers met up again for the fourth and final match up of the season today. Mike Unger easily took first in each heat, winning the season championship by a considerable margin. Dave Marenberg took second place by one point over Mark Mowrey, with Rob Crawford taking fourth. Congrats Mike!
Mike Unger with his winning Mustang race plane.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Member News

Congratulations to association member Dave Marenberg, who placed 2nd in Beginner Scale at the National Association of Scale Aeromodelers (NASA) Columbus Scale Classic held at Dineen Field, Alum Creek Reservoir, on August 19th and 20th. It was his first scale flying competition and he did an excellent job piloting his Eflight Carbon-Z T-28.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Pylon Crashing

For those that had "other" things to do on Saturday (Gary), you missed an exciting day of pylon racing: two closely contested races, two bad hand launches, and two spectacular crashes. Mike U. had a bogey launch on the first race, leaving Dave M.and Rob C. to mix it up for first. Rob took the first heat, only to flop his plane on the next hand launch. Mike won the second heat with Dave in second.
Rob tossed his untested Parkzone plane into the last heat with encouragement from the other racers. After all, it would have been less exciting with only two planes in the race. 
Dave and Rob were neck-and-neck for second behind Mike until the eighth lap, when Rob pushed his plane too hard and clipped the southern pylon with a loud SMACK!  The guys were having a great time and didn't want it to end just because one of the planes busted into several bits. Hot glue to the rescue! 
THREE STICKS of glue later, the planes took to the air again for a bonus round of racing. Unfortunately, the pylon impact had damaged the bond between the spar and the wing 
of Rob's Parkzone BF-109, causing the wing to flex unpredictably in the turns and...well, try flying an airplane where the wing twists!

It was a great day at the field, and we hope to see more members and spectators out to take part in the fun. The next race day is August 19th.

Click HERE for the season points standing.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The ups and downs of the hobby.

The past weekend was perfect for getting out to the field. The clubhouse was busy on Saturday and Sunday with members taking advantage of the glorious summer weather. On Sunday, we had a particularly eventful day, with some great models flying and a notable unfortunate event.  Bill A. finally got his excellently-built, fabric covered J-3 Piper Cub into the air- three times! The Cub's four-stroke sounded great, and it really embodied the spirit of the full-scale plane as it circled the field. Three flights and safely back in the hangar! That's a good day of flying.
Bill A. with his beautiful J-3 Cub.
Bill H. did not have the same fortune. His trim little biplane was on its fourth outing this Sunday, and had performed well until the dreaded gremlins intervened. On his last flight, the transmitter lost connection with the plane, and nothing could get it back to the field. Sadly, it ended up buried in a field, shattered to bits. The receiver battery was fully charged, and everything else appeared proper- perhaps the radio equipment had a flaw.  Equipment failure can happen, and if you are a model aviator you should be prepared for the risk when you put your plane up into the air, as Bill did. He'll be building another plane soon.
Bill's departed biplane.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

July Meeting News

 It was truly perfect flying weather for the July meeting. We had several hours of flying- everything from glow engines and electric war birds to combat wings. Thanks to Bill H. for trimming the field before the meeting.

 Items discussed at the July association meeting included:
- procurement of artificial runway material.
- rotor challenge?
- sponsorship of local girls soccer team.
- success of the flight demonstration for the summer enrichment academy.
- Acceptable FPV practices and procedures at the field.

Members in attendance: Dick K., Mark M., Bill H., Dave Mb., Rob C., Bill A., Chuck M., Todd P., James L.

Saturday, June 17, 2017


Pre-race prep in the pits.
It was a beautiful day for the second round of pylon racing at the Urbana RC Park. However, the steady wind made pylon turns a little tricky on the upwind turn. One plane unfortunately rolled over too far in a turn and plowed into the tall grass. (A bit of hot glue will fix that!)
The aim is to turn as close to the pylon as possible, without cutting around it.
Mike U. took first overall for the day with three first-place wins. For the full results of today's racing and the season points standing, click on: Racing Results

Mike's smiling for a reason...FIRST PLACE, BABY!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Association News

It was a busy Friday for the Flying Association: 
This morning, association officers Dick K. and Rob C. put on a model aircraft demonstration for the Summer Enrichment Academy at Bellefontaine High School. The students were able to see various types of model aircraft, learn about how they function, and see a flight demonstration. Afterward, they had a great time trying out the AMA balsa gliders Dick K. provided. The kids were knowledgeable about the principles of flight and keenly interested in how the models worked. Who knows, perhaps there are a few future pilots in the group?

Thanks for the wonderful thank-you card guys, and thank you to Kevin Penwell for inviting us back again this year.
The SEA students showing off their AMA gliders. (Faces hidden to protect privacy).
Later in the day, several members came out to the field to take advantage of the gorgeous weather. More photos from today's flying can be found on our photos page.
Todd P. helps a young pilot earn his wings.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Ah- WARM weather- it's SUMMER!

Thursday was a great evening for flying. We finally had weather that was warm and not too windy. Thanks to the efforts of Bill and Dick, we had a runway cut and ready for flying. Dick's 3-D printed Cessna 152 (pics forthcoming) took to the air for its maiden flight and flew beautifully. A loose muffler grounded Rob after it caused two hairy dead-stick landings (thanks for the tools, Mark!). But- the attraction of the evening was Mike's carbon fiber, 700-size Goblin. Wow- what a super sick heli! (That's what the cool kids say...)

We are rooting for you taking first at the AMA Nats this year Mike!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

A June meeting with March weather.

Dave M.'s electric Astro Hog.
Our June meeting took place under dreary, cold skies on Wednesday. Items discussed at this month's meeting included:

- Possible artificial turf for the field. We are awaiting more news from our potential source.
- Picnics after each pylon race.
- FPV "waiver" for drone racing events at our field.
- Designing the swap meet flyers for next year.
- Producing a rules sign for the flying field and getting it printed.
- Starting service for the port-o-john at the end of the month.
- Rotor Challenge date awaiting more information.


Members in attendance: Mark, Dick, Bill H., Bill A., Rob, Dave Mb., Chuck

Sunday, June 4, 2017

SMAC Invitational Picnic

Thanks to the members of the Springfield Model Airplane Club (SMAC) for inviting us to their annual fly-in and picnic. The weather was perfect for flying, the hamburgers tasty, and everyone had a great time:
Urbana member Todd P. watches as one of the jets does a fast pass down the runway.
Members Bill A., Dick K., and Danny W. enjoy the show from the shade of the pavilion.
The jets were awesome to watch as they did loops and rolls.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Warbird Racing 2017

Our 2017 warbird pylon racing season kicked off to a great start on Saturday. The guys did an awesome job of rolling with it and working out a smooth process for conducting the heat races (including how to do hand-launches). The races were fast, nail-biting fun!

The new Tower Hobbies Reno Racer Mustang proved to be the plane to beat (although much of that performance was definitely superior piloting skill). After three heats of races (6 total), Mark. M. came out with an early points lead in the season. Will he remain the points lead? The stakes are high- we'll see next month!

It is not too late to join the racing series. If you have a Tower Hobbies war bird, bring it out and join the fun next month!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Weather Woes

The cold, wet, and windy weather has put a damper on plans to have pylon racing practice (or just flying models in general). We have standing water in the pits, and pylon practice was put off again today because of the 15 mph wind gusts. 

A few brave souls came out in defiance of crabby ol' Mother Nature. Mark and Rob actually pulled off two maiden flights- one with a quadcopter and the other with a freshly-built vintage Bridi/Great Planes 60 Trainer kit:
The quadcopter handled the wind well.
1980's Great Planes Trainer 60 with a Saito 65.
 Despite the recent weather, the flying season is here. Looking for a friendly place to fly, or learn to fly model aircraft? Fill out the CONTACT US form on the JOIN page and we'll get you set up with an association membership!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Pylon Racing Season

Pylon Racing Season Info


 If you plan on racing this season, here are a few things you need to know or do:
  • You'll need to have your Tower Hobbies warbird ready to fly, and at least two 3S 25-35C lipo batteries in good condition. Also, it's your choice to keep the landing gear in place.
  • Before you can race, you'll need to register and get colored ID stickers for your wings and tail, (unless you have a distinctive paint scheme) .
  • Practice hand-launching your airplane safely.
  • Range check your radio setup.
  • Be able to demonstrate that your throttle fail-safe works. 
  • Pay your non-refundable $20 season race fee.
  • Demonstrate your AMA membership is current.
The tentative racing schedule for the season is:
May 13th
June 17th
July 15th
August 19th
September 16th
 (All Race Days Noon-4 PM)

The schedule is subject to change. Participants will be notified by email and posted on this site if there is a reschedule due to weather or unforeseen circumstances. Spectators are welcome!

See you there!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Our Stance on Responsible Aircraft Operation

The Urbana RC Flying Association is a community-based organization of remote-controlled aircraft hobbyists. We enjoy building and flying model aircraft and sharing our interest with the wider community of the greater Urbana region. Our Association is committed to the safe and lawful operation of model aircraft of all types at our flying field, adhering to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved guidelines for model aircraft operation devised by the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA).

Over the past few years, multi-rotor aircraft or “drones” have become widely available in the consumer electronics market. Irresponsible and even dangerous operation of these aircraft by reckless individuals has been a topic of national concern- and particularly of the model aircraft hobbyist community. 

Recently, a multi-rotor aircraft operated remotely via video camera was spotted flying over our flying field, the nearby neighborhood, and local park at dusk. This sort of “drone” aircraft can be piloted from thousands of feet away, so it isn’t known where the craft originated from. It was an unlawful act that violated FAA rules and threatened public safety.

The Urbana RC Flying Association would like to state our position on the operation of “drones” and model aircraft in general, and assure the surrounding community of our commitment to their safe and lawful operation:

Our members only operate aircraft within the limits of our flying field. Flying any model aircraft over people, public venues, roads, or buildings is unsafe, unlawful, and strictly prohibited by our association. We also do not operate any aircraft using First-Person-View goggles (FPV)-- all of our flights are within the primary operator’s line-of-sight. FPV is also not permitted within a five-mile radius of an airport (Grimes Field) without prior notification.

Our association has operated model aircraft safely in cooperation with local authorities and the FAA for 15 years. We greatly value the relationship we have with the Urbana community and respect the rights of safety and privacy of our friends and neighbors.

Drones or other remotely-piloted aircraft flying over people, city streets, or neighborhoods should be reported to the Urbana Police Department at 937-652-4350.  Unsafe and unlawful operation of remote-control aircraft jeopardizes the continuation of the hobby for everyone.

For information on safe and lawful drone operation, please visit:

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Opening Day

 It was great weather for our 2017 field opening. Members chipped in to help change the oil and sharpen the blades on the mowing equipment.

The field is freshly mowed and rolled- everything looks great! Thanks to everyone that lent a hand today.Hey- that's a racing pylon in that picture!
Ready for the 2017 season!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

April Meeting Announcements

A few announcements from this month's Association meeting:

Mad River Flying Association will be changing its name to URBANA RC FLYING ASSOCIATION.

  Meeting minutes can be found HERE.

Members- FIELD OPENING DAY is this Sunday, April 9th at 1:00 PM. We will be setting up and repairing equipment, so please come and help and prepare to get dirty. 


WARBIRD RACING:  Practice Day- get in some laps around the pylons! April 29th at 1:00 PM


Historic gathering of B-25 Bombers: 18 of these magnificent aircraft will be coming!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Next Meeting

Hey Members and Prospective Members:
Our next meeting will be Thursday, April 6th, 6:00 PM at the Champaign Aviation Museum. See you there!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Thank You!

Mad River Flying Association 

would like to thank all of the vendors and hobbyists that made our 2017 Swap Meet a success!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Member News

Members- Please set aside some time next week for the February association meeting.  This is the planning meeting for our swap meet coming up at the beginning of March.

In other news, the spring-like weather has lured some of us out of our hangars. Association member Todd P. sent us this picture of his recent outing. Check out the small plane- it's an E-flight Convergence VTOL (Vertical Take Off and Landing). The rotors tilt like a full-scale Osprey!