In the interest of the hobby and sport of model aircraft, it is a requirement of Samaa, and subsequently also a local club rule, for any pilot to be allowed to fly on his own without a qualified instructor in attendance, that he/she should possess at least a solo proficiency rating (Section 6.16 of the General Rules and Guidelines for Operation of Model Aircraft)
The proficiency rating system was introduced by Samaa to ensure a RC model pilot’s ability to fly and control a model aircraft safely when other members are present and flying. It also ensures that the model pilot had been instructed on his club’s bye-laws, safety rules, the SAMAA Operating Manual, and has an understanding and working knowledge of his radio equipment, radio installation, and a basic understanding related to model safety and aerodynamics. There are five proficiency ratings: Solo, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Instructor. Samaa has for many years regarded the Bronze rating as the club minimum standard.
Out of the 120 club members at Irene Radio Flyers, there are 40 members who do not possess a SOLO rating as yet. Many of these members are excellent RC pilots with excellent flying skills. The completion of a SOLO proficiency test should for many therefore just be a formality. We as a Club would therefore like to call on these members to at least do a SOLO proficiency test as soon as possible.
But if you already possess a Solo proficiency, please do not stop there. RC planes are getting bigger, faster and more powerful. Turbine jets are becoming even more popular. Samaa has therefore stipulated in Sections 6.26 and 6.27 of the said General Rules and Guidelines for Operation of Model Aircraft respectively that pilots who want to fly large model aircraft with a mass more than 10kg but less than 25kg, should at least possess a Silver proficiency rating and pilots who want fly gas turbine jets, should at least possess a gold rating. The South African Model Jet Association (SAMJA) also has minimum proficiency requirements in this regard.
We can therefore not emphasize the requirement of obtaining a proper proficiency rating enough. We have determined quite a few dates in our calendar to assist members with proficiency tests. But we are willing to accommodate you on any date when you are ready and willing to complete a proficiency test, provided that instructors would be available on that day. Any two members with a Silver rating are allowed to test a pilot for a Solo rating.
Please consult our new web at www.irf.co.za and then click on the CLUB and then PROFICIENCY TESTS tabs to download the Samaa proficiency booklets fir fixed wing and heli’s.
Please make use of these opportunities availed to you. You are welcome to discuss any of the above with any of the committee members or the qualified Samaa instructors at our club.