Area 51 – Club and Safety Rules

This flying site is private property and operated by the SAMAA affiliated Area 51 RC Flyers, and is intended for the sole use of Area 51 RC Flyers members and guests. All Area 51 RC Flyers’ Club Rules and SAMAA rules shall apply and will be enforced.

Operational /administrative rules 

1.Vehicles shall be parked only in established parking areas.

2.The last person leaving the flying site shall close water supply between water tank and utilities and lock the gate.

3.The misuse of alcohol at Area 51 club and flying field will not be tolerated.

4.Your current membership/SAMAA card is your ticket to fly and must be visibly displayed on you or radio at all times. Your card must also be used to book your spot for flying on the “Book your Spot” board.  Please take your card off the board when entering the flight line to fly.

5.All Committee members’ cards are indicated with red.

6.Novice flyers are not permitted to fly solo until a qualified instructor has given them the required check flight and signed their card for solo flight. They may however fly with the assistance of a qualified pilot as well as with an instructor…. Buddy box preferred. Upon qualification, they will receive another card indicating their proficiency status.

7.It is the responsibility of each pilot to ensure that his aircraft is airworthy. New or repaired aircraft must be inspected by a qualified member pilot prior to being flown.

8.Flying of other than R/C aircraft or hi-start launched R/C gliders is permitted provided it does not interfere in any way with powered R/C flight or the intent to fly by attending R/C pilots. Example control line aircraft, hand launch glider, free flight. All other field rules and SAMAA safety rules shall still apply.  No rockets are allowed to be launched at Area 51 flying site without the committee approval.

9.No more than (5) five aircraft are to be airborne at any one time. Flight times shall be limited to 20 minutes per flight including engine start-up and adjustment.

10.Designated starting box requirements:

a.The starting box shall be used for test running engines, and may also be used for radio range checks, aircraft adjustments, etc.

b.When using the starting box, the appropriate frequency pin shall be placed on the frequency control board.

11.Pilots shall place a frequency pin on the frequency board only when ready to proceed to the flight line (or starting box) and shall remove that pin upon completion of the flight.  Last person to use the staring table; please clean the table before leaving.  (This is only good sportsmanship, and good ethics)

12.Assembly tables must be used for assembly only. After assembly please clear the table, and give other members chance to assemble.  Please keep tables clean at all times.

13.Club members may bring a guest to fly with the approval of the committee. Non-SAMAA members may fly as guest on 2 occasions after which the visitor will be approached by the club or a member of the club to join the club as a member

If your guest is a SAMAA member it is the responsibility of the member to ensure the guest is familiar with the field rules, an amount of R 50.00 is payable for landing fees. The host will be liable for the landing fees as well as the payment thereof.

Non SAMAA members will not be allowed to operate any R/C device without supervision of a member who has at least a Solo rating.

14. Area 51 membership is subjected to SAMAA membership.

15.Club fees for 2015 are as follows:

Ordinary member: R1000-00

Junior Member under 18 (If parent is not a member): R500-00

Family Membership: R1250-00

Honorary Membership: Free

16.Each new member will receive the following set of documents upon approval of his/her membership:

Do’s and Don’ts at the club.
Club rules and Safety rules.
Area 51 Constitution.

Each new member will be required to send an sms with his or her name to a designated committee member in acknowledgement that he or she understands and accepts the rules and constitution of the club. The membership will only be valid after receipt of such a sms.

17.Jets: SAMAA safety rules apply to jets until refined for the club.


Area 51 Safety rules

1.Electric motors shall be treated with the same respect and caution as glow or gasoline powered engines. Electric powered aircraft without a separate switch for energizing the system shall only be plugged in on the flight line … not the pits. Engines and motors shall be started only at the designated start-up boxes or bench. Restart of gas or glow engines on the field are permitted only if no other aircraft are on the flight line or in the air.

2.There is a 30 meters buffer/safety zone between the flight line and the allowable area of flight. This area is for taxing purposes. There shall be no flying over the spectator area, pit are or parking area. There will be no running of engines or taxing of aircraft in, to or from the pit area.

3.All engines must be killed before entering the pits area after flying. ( Before yellow box at gate)

4.Transmitters shall not be turned on without using the established frequency control system. All transmitters /radio systems shall meet the updated requirements of SAMAA.

5.With more than one aircraft in the air, a flight pattern shall be established and maintained during flight. The pattern is set by prevailing wind direction and take-offs and landing shall be into the wind. Taking off from “right to left” sets up a “right hand pattern” i.e. all turns in the pattern are right turns… and vice-versa. If a change in wind direction dictates a change in the flight pattern, pilot recognizing the change shall call out other pilots on the flight line to reverse pattern.

6.Pilots needing to walk out onto the field to retrieve an aircraft while other aircraft are in the pattern shall loudly call out “on the field” and ensure acknowledgement from other pilots on the flight line prior to walking onto the field. Announcing, “Taking off”, “landing” or “dead stick” is just a “good practice” to brief fellow pilots of your intentions.

7.Non R/C electronic equipment or any other equipment operated at the club must be operated in such a manner that it does not interfere with any R/C operations at any time whatsoever.

8.Taking off and landing of any R/C device will only be carried out in the designated taking off and landing areas. Taxi ways will only be used for taxiing.

R/C helicopters and Drones will take off from the Helipad.

9.Jets: TBA


Good safety practices

1.You should not fly alone in case of a debilitating accident. There are times however when you may choose to do so regardless. Having a cell phone available is good practice in this case and extra caution is warranted in both engines handling and flying.

2.You should have a key to the first aid box (same as the gate).

3.Always use a glove or “chicken stick” for hand starting engines. Always check throttle closed to idle and be clear of prop or firmly grasp prop prior to attaching glow driver.

4.Always perform glow driver removal, needle adjustments, and “run-ups” from behind the aircraft… (exception for adjustments of “pushers”)

5.Due to the seriousness of this sport no children under the age of 14, will be allowed to fly without his instructor or parental supervision.

6.Free running children in the starting area/ pits area (behind safety zone) or flying area are strictly prohibited.

7.No Non – Pilots, Non Members are allowed in pits area, or behind safety zone.



1.R/C Helicopters and drones:  No hover practicing on runway right in front of carports (Pit area). Only flying.  Hovering only in dedicated hovering area.

2.Categories:  Different categories of planes will fly as follows:

Foamies and trainers
Circuit Flyers (Speeders)
50CC plus
Scale flyers

3. When a maiden is taking place all other R/C devices are grounded for the duration of the maiden. Proper communication is required amongst the members present.

4.Flying time for planes will be limited to the time the first plane takes off and land.  All other planes using the current plane’s spot on the pegging board to fly simultaneously will land when that first plane lands. This ensures that the next position on the pegging board will not be delayed unnecessarily.