Archive for January 4th, 2016


Head Lamp Review

In Uncategorized on January 4, 2016 by nicholasandrewray

Head Lamp Review

Prior to heading to Lakehurst, I asked around for recommendations for lights. I knew it would be dark so I wanted something that would work.

In the end I chose this product carried by Amazon:


  • Light is very bright and can be focused.
  • Battery lasts a long time.
  • Battery is user replaceable should it be needed later.


  • Light color is a bit rose tinted. White would be better.
  • You look like a dork when wearing it.

When working in near darkness, you can easily see your way around your table, focusing out quite wide. The light is pretty even when focused.

During Kang’s record flight at night, I could easily spot his plane by focusing to as close to a point as the light would get. The LED is square and the focused beam shows this all the way up to the rafters in Lakehurst.

Would I use this exclusively in really high ceiling venues? A larger and higher power light would be better.

However for the price and ease of use, this wins hands down.

Mike Kirda 12.29.15


The Origins of X-16

In Uncategorized on January 4, 2016 by nicholasandrewray

The Origins of X-16

The articles and plan published below were sent to INAV by Wally Miller. The majority it of the content is of a historical nature, but there is also a discussion of possible changes to current AMA and FAI events. The suggestions presented below reflect the author’s opinions and not those of INAV. As a general policy, INAV is a neutral party, and does not have opinions about proposals to change rules.

WM 1WM 2WM 3
WM 4WM 5
WM 6WM 7X-16
Click here to download a PDF of the plan.


Continuing quest for straightened music wire

In Uncategorized on January 4, 2016 by nicholasandrewray

Continuing quest for straightened music wire

With the demise of A2Z, I began searching for a source of straight music wire in the sizes we need.

Coiled music wire typically has a single set, a curve. It isn’t easy to straighten completely, but you can do a reasonable job of it with pliers.For the amount of effort required, the wire sold by A2Z was a great deal.

One product that came up was made by Dubro for the fishing market – A small wire straightener that could fit into a tackle box made to straighten wire leaders.

The reviews seemed positive. I reached out to several other fliers but no one had ever heard of it or tried it. So I bit the bullet and bought one to try it out.

Unfortunately it doesn’t work. I tried using light pressure, medium pressure, high pressure. I tried using tension on the wire and varied the amount of pressure.

No matter. What you end up with is wire bent into a helix-shape. Absolutely none of it was usable, afterwards it all got binned.

This unit has been tossed into my tackle box for now. Hopefully it will work for straightening out any kinked Little Joe Heart-Of-Steel leaders next time I go Pike fishing.

Another way suggested online is to stretch the wire until breaking point. I calculated this and tried suspending the weight from a ceiling beam in my basement. What I ended up with was a mangled ball of wire when it broke. Another bit binned.

I’m still searching for a way to easily straighten music wire. Until then, pliers seem to be the only alternative.

Mike Kirda 12.28.15