Athol Cohen - TEMAC Instructor

Started by Athol, March 08, 2019, 09:58:38 AM

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Radio Control Aviation Resume & Interests – Zone Director (L) 2017 to 2019
TEMAC Secretary/Treasurer 2020 - Present
Athol H. Cohen – MAAC #: 35223   Tel: +1(416)729-1232

Started in Radio Control Aircraft South Africa in 1974, purchasing a 6 channel 27Mhz Futaba Radio System and learnt to fly at the Tygerberg Model Flying Club.  After gaining my wings and becoming somewhat proficient I also joined Cape Radio Flyers.
It was at Cape Radio flyers that I started to take an interest in aerobatics and flew in local F3A competitions and also started judging F3A contests – before the change to the current Aresti Pattern came into use in Radio Control, driven by the Tournament of Champions, hosted by Circus Circus (Bill Bennett) in Las Vegas.  During my time at CRF, I was Chairman (President) of the club in 1977.  I was also an instructor flying both Mode 1 and Mode 2 configurations, although my preference is naturally towards Mode 1 (Throttle and Ailerons on the Right Stick and Elevator and Rudder on the Left Stock).

We made application in 1978 to immigrate to Canada and left South Africa just after the F3A Internationals that were held in Johannesburg at the end of September 1979.  It was at the Internats that I met Ivan Christensen, Warren Hitchcox, Gerald Shaw, Terry Penner and other members of the Canadian team, whose names escape me (after all these years).  I attended a few of the Annual Get-together's that Ivan organised in Guelph.
We (our family) arrived in Canada – Toronto on the 4th October 1979 but I did not get back into RC until around 1988 after visiting Comdex (the original Computer Exposition) in Las Vegas.  As luck would have it, we were at the Circus Circus Hotel & Casino and happened upon some folks who were heading to watch the Tournament of Champions.  I went along with my wife Barb, and the bug struck again.

I bought a JR Max 6 Radio from the local hobby store Circus Hobbies, and brought it back home with me.  I had to send it to the JR Service Centre in Kitchener/Waterloo (don't remember their name) to get it changed to Mode 1 and reprogrammed for this mode.
Joined MAAC effective Jan 1989 and Ajax Radio Control Club was my first club although I wanted to join the Richmond Hill Model Airplane Club, but at the time, they had a limit of 100 members (although only a very small number were active flyers).  My first plane here was a scratch built balsa Ugly Stick with a 60 engine.
Later that year or early the following year (1990) I did join Richmond Hill as some spots became vacant.  During my time at Richmond Hill I was elected President for a term in 1993 and was instrumental in getting a (short-lived) newsletter published but struggled to get regular contributions and eventually it died.

In 1993/1994 the pressures of work saw my RC flying take a back seat and all my gear was put in "moth-balls".  I was also "unenamoured" with the cleaning process after a day of flying using heaps of paper towel, Mr. Clean and Windex before putting the planes back in the car.  At the time, I also mixed my own fuel using Canadian Alcohol Methanol, a 50% Klotz synthetic and Klotz Caster Bean oil mixture with 5% Klotz Nitromethane.  I called the fuel methanol and oil, not Nitro as its known today.  I was also an instructor at RHMAC.
With Comdex coinciding with the ToC, I managed to get to see the tournament again in 1990 and 1992, and I have the Circus Pink Jacket to show for my sins.

During the spring of 2015 I was walking down my street in Thornhill Woods and saw this guy "playing" with an RC Biplane in the nearby park - it was a very calm (no wind) day and he was flying an in-door model and really tossing it about the sky.  Thought nothing too much more about it until about a week or two later when I discovered he was a neighbour, at the bottom of the street and stopped to ask about his planes that were being loaded into his car.  He, Nev Ruskin, was an RC flyer and also, originally from South Africa, but more my children's ages than mine.  He explained the fact that he flew both electric (LiPo) and gasoline powered planes. 

The electric peaked my interest and in the summer of 2015, I purchased a Spektrum DX7 Radio and converted it to Mode 1 (one can do that oneself now).  My first plane, getting back into the "game" was a used Slick 50.
I joined TEMAC (Toronto Electric Model Aviation Club) and started flying with them.  I had the Slick for most of the season until, flying inverted, too low, pulled up instead of pushing down and the ground came up and smote the airplane.  Watch out for this phenomenon!
So here we are today and I'm still loving the RC flying and especially the comradery when we get to the field.  Mostly, I fly with the TEMAC Morning Crew

I had my small IT Consulting & Support business but retired at the end of 2017 and wound it up entirely at the 2018.
Over the years I have derived a tremendous amount of pleasure from RC flying and have always "given back" when the opportunity arose.  At TEMAC I am also an instructor and as mentioned, my preference is Mode 1 but am comfortable flying trainer airplanes on Mode 2.  The good news is that with the sophisticated 2.4GHz computer radios available today, I'm able to use the Buddy Box configuration on Mode 1 while the student's radio can be on Mode 2.  This does require binding the student's plane to my radio, so it's the Master.

This a longish summary of my involvement in Radio Control Aircraft (fixed wing) and have the time and the interest in looking at how I can assist with the further development of the hobby and sport of Model Aviation.
For my sins, I made myself available for the Zone Directors position and was elected as the Southeast Zone (L) Director in October 2017. I left the position at the end of my 2-year term in 2019.

When it comes to flight training (instruction), please ask me for help if you need it.  I'm less inclined to impose myself on students but willingly assist students on request!  :D