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The wild blue yonder

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June 20, 2003

Andersonville-  It's an expensive hobby. One remote control airplane can cost thousands of dollars. And some of the best are on display this weekend at the Southeast Electric Flight Festival.

We watched on of the best R-C pilots in the world show off his skills.

Peter Goldsmith loves flying his sail plane-- just one of more than 25 model airplanes he owns.  "This plane is a replica of a full size plane called a ASK-18."

This sale plane, or glider, is one-third the size of the original, and it doesn't have an engine. So, Goldsmith is going to his plane towed into the air, and then released. 

At 800 feet, the sale plane is released. But without an engine, just how does it stay up? It's basic physics. The key is rising air.  "Maybe you've been in the desert and seen some dust devils-- well thats a bubble of hot air that will break from the ground and rise the object is to get the sow plane in those bubbles."

But most of the model airplanes here don't rely on bubbles. They rely on powerful engines.

For Peter Goldsmith, considered one of the best pilots in the world, this is more than a hobby. "Why do I do it? Everything good has come from this hobby. I have my job, met my wife, everything around me is related to this hobby."

For all these model plane fanatics, these mini airplanes are more than just a passtime. The Flight Festival is at Hodge's Hobbies  at 428 Neil Hodges Road
in Andersonville.

It lasts through the weekend and events start at noon.

posted at 4:40PM by dave.miller@walb.com