Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Piet Le Roux takes up the wooden spoon again

I must congratulate the editor of SAMAA News on the last issue, it was excellent. The only thing that bothers me is the back page, the twelve points on the back page to be exact. I doubt that this was written by him because the author obviously did not check the information.

No. 1 states that the SAMAA is the "legal authority", well apart from a copy of a some what vague letter form the CAA, we have seen nothing concrete. I can not think what could be so great about doing a government department’s dirty work for free when our members have already paid for their services in tax rands.

No.2 states that membership is a "legal requirement": this is not reflected in the CAA regulations at this stage.

No.3 states that SAMAA is responsible for the "regulation and control "of all RC radio frequencies. I suppose that ICASA has now also delegated SAMAA to do their dirty work for free, but I don’t think so because they have already suckered the SARL into doing some of it. The 53 to 54MHZ frequencies maybe jointly controlled by the South Africa Radio League, but the rest is fully controlled by ICASA.

No.6 states: "transforming aero modelling in order to comply with the constitution". This depends how you interpret the Constitution and to which parts you give preference. The previous government did the same with the Bible as the present government is doing with the Constitution. Let’s rather stay away from political issues. If you want to stuff-up any good hobby all have to do is bring politics and religion into it.

No.11 states that we receive funding from the lottery board have, have we actually received anything to date?

And last but not least: the "WARNING". Had the author now forgotten about the constitution?

Piet Le Roux


Anonymous said...

I have invested in a DX7 Spektrum Radio (2.4Ghz Band). My involvemnent with clubs, Samaa and their frequencies has reached it's end. I can now join the rest of the DX7 flyers who fly next to the local saama club or anywhere else for that matter. No fear of interference ever again!

Piet Le Roux said...

Dear, Anonymous,
You have made your point on numerous previous posts. SAMAA don’t have any “frequencies” RC use free frequencies bands or share with radio hams. The 2.4 GHz band is a free band and is not just used for RC it’s also used for Wireless computer networks. In Bloemfontein we had an incident where a wide area network were established on 2.4GHz making use of a number of hi sites, some in line of site of our airfield. ICASA manage to close them down but there is such a demand for bandwidth that I don’t think it will be the end of it. So don’t think that you “don’t have to fear of interference ever again!” because if this can happen in Bloemfontein think what goes on in Gauteng.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr Le Roux,


clearly states that the scenario you described were thoroughly tested. It also explains why a 2.4 Ghz system, including WANS,Cellphones and the like, could NEVER interfere with each other. The signal sent to the reciver is imbedded with the model's code and can only recognize that specific signal.

Anyway, I am not from gauteng, will never be, and I have not made my point clear in any previous posts.

DX7 is the future. Now I have.

I was under the impression that samaa "owns" the 35Mhz band and that it is illegal to be used for anything else than RC.

A lot of farmers in my area uses the 35Mhz radios, some pushing out 100 Watts. That is a lot of interference.:-)

Piet Le Roux said...

Dear anonymous,
I have read the article that you refer to and no, the author does not describe the scenario that I have revered to.
He only states: “Some may wonder about interference from other users of the 2.4GHz band such as cordless phones, wireless routers, WiFi and wireless network cards. But again the DX7 system recognizes these when it scans and finds sections of that band for its use. In testing with these devices I have not encountered any issues or conflicts that caused issues for the DX7 system. “

The DX7 system, like any PCM system, will not allow an interfering signal to corrupt its data. But if it can not receive any good data it will go into safe mode. The equipment that normally uses this band is very low power and should not be connected to any hi-gain external antennas. The scenario that I revered to made use of hi-power equipment with hi-gain antennas on hi-sites. Although the 2.4 GHz band is big this type of equipment uses a lot of frequency bandwidth in order to obtain a wide data bandwidth.
Remember the author only states that he did not encounter any problems while testing he does not say it’s impossible. The point that I was making is that if it can happen in a small city like Bloemfontein just think what can happen in a more crowded city.

Like the farmers in your area that transmit 100 watts on 35 MHZ this WAN was illegal and has been put out of business, like the farmers on 35MHZ should be put out of business. But like with a lot of things nothing can happen if you do not report it. The 35 to 35.5MHZ band has been set aside for RC aircraft by ICASA and it is illegal to be used for anything else but it does not “belong” to SAMAA.

Aragon said...

Regarding the Spektrum radios, also keep in mind that they're not the most advanced spread spectrum technology out there. There's better stuff coming, tech that'll be even more immune to interference. Who knows... the future might involve RC spread spectrum moving to its own little section of the GHz band. That would be ideal.

Anyway, back to SAMAA's tom foolery. I suggest all those that are concerned do their part and vote with their wallets this year. I for one know my membership must be coming up for renewal soon. I also suggest keeping an eye out for gazette publications on Aviation law changes. Laws don't get changed over night without public input.

Les Ward said...

Dear Piet
I can only agree with you that SAMAA are treading shaky ground in their apparent willingness to accept deligation of control over "all model flying activity" in S.A. It's is highly questionable wether the SACAA comissioner has acted legally in his "empowering" SAMAA to perfrom this regulatory role.

Another of many other issues that SAMAA needs to clarify is wether or not SAMAA members need to be members of bonafide flying clubs. If they accept membership from people who are not members in good standing of a flying club, SAMAA is effectively restricting a clubs ability to discipline errant members.
Les Ward

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