Article Filter
Education Team
Instructional Articles

Redbook Review - June

Posted by tl3
Posted on 6/22/2017

Why is Figure 14 all the Rage?

Keith Cannon
If you could recall only two aspects of your judging school experience and wanted to judge as effectively as possible, hands down, the two concepts to remember are:
• ½ Point deduction per 5 degrees of angular, track, or roll error (some exceptions apply, see rulebook for details), and
• Figure 14
This month’s topic of discussion is Figure 14, which governs all internal lines that must be of equal length, and all internal lines that are bisected by roll elements (which results in two lines that must be of equal length). Let’s take a more detailed look. 

Figure 14 is broken into 5 scenarios and we will cover each one in depth.

i. Visible Variation is a 1 point deduction.
If you can see that there is a slight difference in line lengths from the top of the figure to the bottom of a figure (or vice versa) you must deduct 1 point. To clarify this, if you see a variation between the lengths of the line segments, but one line is less than twice as long as the other, you must then deduct 1 point.
ii. A 1:2 (or 2:1) variation is a 2 point deduction.
If you see line length differences where one line is twice the length of the other (either 1:2 or 2:1) you must apply a two (2) point deduction.
iii. Deviations greater than a 1:2 (or 2:1) require a 3 point deduction. If you observe that the line length difference is larger than 1:2 based on distance traveled by the plane, not time elapsed, then a three (3) point deduction is mandated. For example, on a downline, the aircraft travels one (1) plane length after the entry radius and performs a roll element, and then flies three (3) plane lengths a 3 point deduction would be indicated.
iv. No line either before or after a roll element requires a four (4) point deduction. A common example of this would be a pilot who runs out of room on a downline and immediately pulls to horizontal after a roll element. The four (4) point downgrade is a combination of a line omission penalty - 1 point, and the greater than 2:1 penalty - 3 points.
v. No lines before and after the roll element is a two (2) point deduction. In order for a pilot to score this they really must try hard. Think about doing a roll without a line before it and without a line after it. To correctly assign the 2 point deduction you must see that the plane did not establish any visible line length both before and after the roll element. The two (2) point penalty in this scenario results from the one (1) point line omission deduction for the missing lines before and after the roll element.
Not all roll elements require the application of Figure 14. So, when does it not apply?
• When roll element occurs on a line following a spin.

• When a roll element occurs on an exterior line (see Glossary and Definitions in the Rule book, page 65).

Quick Quiz: Which Figures on the 2017 Advanced Known Sequence have roll elements where Figure 14 does not apply?

May Quick Quiz Answer: (Should have been easy as it’s a repeat question!) “Before, or” equals four (4).

Let’s Talk Freestyle!

With Scale Aerobatics NATs about to kick off, a recent push to elevate Freestyle’s status within IMAC, and the fact that there is rarely time to discuss it in judging schools, it may be helpful to discuss the specific judging criteria. Reviewing the following criteria will improve your freestyle scores as it provides an intimate picture of the various components the judges are looking for.

Four (4) Minute Freestyle Program:

The four (4) minute freestyle program is a separate “Show Time” event. It is an unrestricted, individually created sequence in which “anything safe goes!” To be eligible to participate and compete in this event, the competitor must also compete in one of the five IMAC categories of precision sequence flying at the same event. It is graded on the following criteria:

A: Technical Merit {90 K}

a.1: Flight Envelope - Utilizing the Exploitation of Aerodynamic and Gyroscopic Forces (20 K). The pilot is expected to make full use of the flight envelope of the aircraft. This means flying the full range of airspeeds and accelerations permitted. Program time should be divided between high and low speeds, high and low G maneuvers, and both positively and negatively G loaded flight segments. The flight should include the demonstration of controlled flight beyond the stall boundary by use of autorotation or other high angle of attack maneuvers. The judge will deduct points if any of these areas are noticeably underutilized. The pilot is expected to show movement of the aircraft about all axes using both conventional aerodynamic controls and propeller-generated gyroscopic forces. Higher grades will be given to pilots able to make use of all these effects through a wide range of aircraft attitudes and flight paths. Repeated use of any such forces in the same or similar attitudes should result in lower scores.

a.2: Execution of Individual Maneuvers (40 K). It should be clear that the maneuvers flown were, in fact, intended and fully under the pilot’s control. Higher marks will be given for this objective when individual maneuver elements are started and finished on obviously precise headings and in well defined attitudes. When, for example, gyroscopic maneuvers are allowed to decay into imprecise, poorly defined autorotation, marks should be deducted for poor execution. Marks should also be deducted if it appears that the pilot has relinquished control the aircraft at any time.

a.3: Variety (30 K). Many different figures should be completed in the time available. These should include maneuver elements of many different kinds and should use many different flight paths and axes. Lower marks should be given to a pilot who used only one or two principal axes of flight. However, the use additional axes within the performance zone must be clear and precise, not giving the appearance of being used by chance. Marks should also be deducted if any particular maneuver element is overused or continues for an excessive period of time. For example, higher marks would be given in the event of a two-turn flat spin followed by something else, than to a multi-turn spin that simply took up more time.

B: Artistic Impression {90 K}

b.1: Pleasing and Continuous Flow of Figures with Contrasting periods of Dynamic and Graceful Maneuvers (50 K). In a precisely flown sequence, the completion of a figure will be well described when movement about an axis ceases and a particular attitude is briefly held. The start of the next figure or maneuver should then begin without any prolonged period of inactivity caused by the need to reposition the aircraft or reorient the pilot. Marks will be deducted for any obvious period of level flight, or inactivity, required between figures. In a musical symphony, the listener’s mood may be changed by contrasting fast and slow movements. Similarly, in a 4-minute Free Program, the judge should be treated to a flight that causes different reactions. While some maneuvers involve very high speeds, sudden attitude changes and rapid rotations, others involve slower speeds or more gentle transitions. Higher marks will be given to a pilot to finds time in his program for showing such differences of mood and pace. Marks should be deducted in this category for a flight that shows no such distinctions. Higher marks should be given for choreography with the music to enhance the flight, and the flight choreographed to enhance and present visual impressions where both the music and aircraft are flowing together with each other and acting as a unified entity to display a harmonious presentation.

b.2: Presentation of Individual and Combinations of Figures in Their Best Orientation and Optimal Position (40 K). Figures can give different impressions when seen from different viewpoints. For example, a climbing inverted flat spin looks most impressive when the top surface of the aircraft can be seen. A loop flown in a plane inclined at 45 degrees to the vertical is best appreciated when it is flown on the Y-axis. Marks should therefore be deducted if the judge is not shown a figure in its best orientation. Each figure has an optimum from which it is best viewed. For example, a loop flown overhead does not give the same pleasing geometry as one flown further distant. Similarly, a figure flown near the upper height limit will cause discomfort when flown at the near edge of the performance zone; a low-level horizontal figure is better seen from close by than far away. Higher marks will therefore be given when individual figures are optimally placed, while judges should deduct marks when it appears that a figure is not well placed or positioned.

C: Positioning {20 K}

c.1: Symmetry of the Presentation Utilizing the Performance Zone to Maximize the Audience and Judges Perception, Reception, and Viewing of the Program (20 K). Highest marks will be given when the sequence as a whole is balanced evenly to the left and right of the judges; direct line of vision towards the center of the performance zone. Marks should be deducted if, by design or by the influence of the wind, a pilot’s program is noticeable biased to left or right. The greater the degree of symmetrical, it may also be spread too far to either side, so that some maneuver elements are flown outside the performance zone, thus making them difficult to see and interpret. Figures may also be flown on the direct line of vision but very distant. Any part of the flight that is flown at such distances should be penalized for each excursion. The entire program should be positioned so as to maximize both the audience and judges’ perception and reception of the flight as a whole.

17.2: Judging the Four (4) Minute Free Program.

a: Any number of judges can be utilized. As more judges that are used, the overall score average will be less influenced by a single judge. It is recommended that seven (7) be used. For final score tabulation it is recommended that the high and low score per judging criteria category be discarded, and the remaining scores by multiplied by their K factors and added together to obtain the final score.

b: Each criteria will be judged from ten (10) to zero (0) in 0.1 increments, i.e., 8.7, 7.9, 9.8, etc.

c: If the pilot lands any time prior to 3 minutes 30 seconds (three and one-half minutes) the judges score is “prorated.” Example: the pilot lands at the three (3) minute time. The judges will score the contestant as though he flew four minutes. The score room will tabulate the scores normally and the pilot will receive three-fourths (75%) of the judges score for his final score. If the pilot lands any time after three and one-half minutes there is no penalty. The judges will stop scoring when the timer announces “Time” at the four minute mark. Another Example: If the pilot lands at the two minute mark, he will receive 50% of the judges’ score.

d: Specific circumstances that will Disqualify (DQ) the competitor’s flight.

d.1: If the plane crashes, it is a Disqualification (DQ).

d.2: If the plane goes behind the deadline, it is a DQ.

d.3: If the pilot performs dangerous or unsafe maneuvers or high energy maneuvers directed at the judges or spectators, it is a DQ (as determined by a majority of the judges and/or the CD).


Printable Version