TOP GUN 2011
by Bob Violett

   Participating in this annual scale competition has been a BVM tradition for 23 years.  We do it because we can, it is local, and because our products get shown to the world via the abundance of model media in attendance.  Sometimes, we even realize a few kit sales as a result.  The BVM and Skymaster jets did well.  We have great pilots flying them and the landing gear and their mounting survived the turf runway.  Hopefully, the management can provide an improved surface next year.  A competition of "Top Gun" caliber deserves it.


EVF Jets at Top Gun

Rob Lynch and BVM eMiG, EVF ~3~12s
2nd Place Pro Class
Rei Gonzalez and BVM eMiG, EVF ~3~12s
2nd Place Sport Class
Tommy Wood was assisted by Francis Pischner and Tom Wood Sr. with the twin EVF ~2~12s powered BVM Phantom. They garnered 3rd Place in the "Expert" category.
   The BVM eJets were the only EDF's entered in the prestigious Top Gun Scale Competition.  There is a reason for that.  It's a tough exercise on a less than perfect grassfield and your model must be capable of 6-7 minutes of flight time to perform the scale flight routine and survive a go-around if necessary.  Currently, there are no other products on the market that can meet the requirements.   Congratulations to Rob, Rei, and Tommy for mastering the challenges.  Of Course, all of these EVF's featured the Castle Creations HV160 E.S.C. and ThunderPower 65c LiPo batteries. Nothing but the best for BVM pilots.
   The noon time Electric Jet show was also an all BVM event.  Electra's and eBandit's were flown by Rob Lynch, Pablo Fernandez, Rei Gonzalez, and Bob Violett.  Seven minute flights demonstrated 35 mph to 190 mph state-of-the-art performance.


Photo Gallery
click on images to enlarge

    Jack Diaz won "Expert Scale" and the "Best Jet Performance" award with the help of his grandson Santiago and son Gerardo.  The
 BVM F-86 was designed to win and Jack proved its value again.  The tank drop maneuver earned 10 points every flight.
   Third place in the very competitive "Expert Class" and "Best Electric Performance" Award was Tommy Wood with the BVM F-4 on Twin EVF 12 power.  Here we see this impressive machine with gear almost tucked away after take-off.  The centerline tank is jettisoned for 10 points later in the routine.  The twin EVF has its own "cool" sound.


   The Skymaster F-80 won 4th place in the Pro Class in the hands of Pablo Fernandez.  It's planform is easy on the eyes, the slow fight pass was perfect, and the landing a "slider".
   The Skymaster T-45 Goshawk continues to impress jet pilots with its grassfield capability and super smooth flight maneuvers.  It is Dustin's favorite and scored well in the Pro Class.


   David Ribbe has been an F-16 fan for a long time.  It was in the late 80's that David worked at BVM and helped to develop the original 1/9th scale DF version.  Now, the Skymaster 1/6th scale F-16 is a favorite with David and he flies it well.  This camo scheme looks great in the air!
   Scott Harris used a bare bones Skymaster Falcon then applied this Patriotic scheme with lots of details to qualify it for a 9th place
finish in "Expert".

  Team Horizon leader Peter Goldsmith applied this gorgeous paint scheme and dozens of details to this Skymaster T-33.  His efforts were rewarded with a 5th place trophy in the "Expert" class.
   Frankie Mirandes scored 10th in "Expert" with his Flight Metal finished BVM F-100D.  Frankie flew it with authority.  The spectators appreciated the model and its very scale like presentation in the sunny skies.

  BV's "Pretty Patty" Sabre has been sitting silent since its 2006 Mr. Top Gun win.  Using the same documentation and a bit of internal refreshing it placed 2nd in the 2011 Master's Class.  The Jet Central Cheetah engine turned down to 28# thrust makes a perfect power plant for the 34 pound 80" model.

  19 year old RJ Gonzales has a keen eye for perfectly placed maneuvers that contributed to BV's high flight scores.


  The Sabre's slow flight passes scored well.  The midpoint of a slow roll must be centered on the judges.
  BV's F-86 on final and at the moment of touch down, slightly off centerline but definitely in front of the judges.
   Santiago and Granddad Jack Diaz receive their trophy from Sam Wright and Frank Tiano.

Special Recognition

  Winner of the "Engineering Excellence" and "Critic's Choice" awards was Mike Selby's F-111 Swing Wing Aardvark. With Ray Johns at the controls, it also won 2nd place in "Team Scale".  An Aardvark represents a maximum challenge for scale jets, the kind of project the Mike enjoys bringing to fruition.  The Aardvark team: Choe, Mike, Bill, and Ray.

All photos by Dustin and BV