Since 1979 the Great Britain R/C Aerobatic Association (gbrcaa.org) has been a specialist body of the British Model Flying Association looking after the organisation and development in the UK of F3A and in addition and more recently F3P indoor electric precision aerobatic model flying.
In the early days it was the likes of Geoff (it’s only a bit of fun matey) Franklin and Kath (former chairman of the BMFA) and Terry Watson with some friends in the Leicester area brought together the aerobatic flyers and formed what we now know as the GBR/CAA.
Today we have a full programme of events but follow the Sporting Code of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, (fai.org) the World Air Sports Federation which was founded in 1905 and has its headquarters in Lucerne, Switzerland.
F3A models have to weigh under 5 kg and fit into a two metre square box. The aerobatic sequence of manoeuvres has to be completed in eight minutes and is flown at the highest level with specially designed 2 metre models powered either with an electric motor of about 3 kilowatt power, or the YS four stroke. Some electric power models have a direct drive to the propeller whilst others have a gearbox with around 6.7 to 1 reduction ratio with the power being provided by a 10 cell (37 volt) lithium polymer battery of around 5 amp hour capacity. These cells weigh around 1200 grams and are designed to give just sufficient energy to complete the eight minute schedule. The very successful ‘YS’ 28/30cc four stroke, super charged, direct fuel injection internal combustion engines, some running with spark ignition, are still used by some, including the 7 times World Champion Christophe Paysant-Le Roux from France.
We organise precision aerobatic competitions around the country on most weekends from April to October.
F3P electric indoor models have a wingspan of about 850mm and weigh around 90 to 125 grams and are made from depron strengthened with carbon strip, rod or tube. Pilots compete in our winter league for promotion, or to become a member of the United Kingdom team, much the same as F3A pilots do.
For your £20 annual membership the GBR/CAA provide the infrastructure to compete at your own level of ability. We have five F3A schedules called Clubman, Intermediate, Advanced, Masters and FAI and three indoor schedules ‘A’ ‘B’ and ‘C’. The F3A Clubman and Intermediate schedules are illustrated lower down, but all our schedules are available on our web site at gbrcaa.org, along with our contest calendar, photographs of all our events and our forum.