Last updated 8/10/99

# Maneuver


1 Takeoff

upwind centered


2 Straight Flight Out

upwind centered


3 One Half Reverse Cuban 8

upwind end of box


4 Straight Flight Back

downwind centered


5 Stall Turn

upwind centered


6 Immelmann Turn

upwind centered


7 Split "S"

downwind end of box


8 Three Inside Loops

upwind centered


9 One Horizontal Roll

downwind centered


10 Landing

upwind centered


Total K=14


AMA description:

The model must stand still on the ground with the engine(s) running, without being held. The throttle is then smoothly, not suddenly advanced. After the takeoff roll has started, the nose wheel lifts off the ground (tail wheel for a conventional gear airplane), and the aircraft assumes a climb attitude while still rolling on it's main wheels. When the aircraft reaches flying speed it should gently lift off the ground and climb at a gradual angle. The aircraft must not deviate in heading during the takeoff. The takeoff is completed when the model is approximately two meters (6-1/2) from the ground.

The takeoff should not be downgraded for wing dips caused by air turbulence, unless the wings are not immediately leveled. Center of maneuver is liftoff.


1.Model does not stand still when released.

2.Changes in heading during takeoff and climb.

3. Model jumps from ground.

4. Retouches ground after becoming airborne.

5. Too steep a climb angle.

6. Gallops in elevation during climb.

7. Wings not level at any time.

8. Throttle not accelerated smoothly.

Ron's comments: Straight flight out does not start at the end of takeoff. This is a common misconception. After takeoff, make a 180 degree turnaround away from the judges and return downwind. Take your time and check your trims during this pass (that's what it's for). Make another 180 degree turn at the downwind end and get the plane straight and level for your entrance into the box.

If you like, a good initial turnaround after takeoff is the procedure turn. This is performed by making a 90 degree turn away from the flightline followed by a 270 degree turn in the opposite direction. Other out-of-the box turnarounds may be made using the half reverse Cuban eight as this makes it easy to set up on the same baseline.

Straight Flight Out

AMA Description:

The model must be brought exactly parallel to the flight path and flown in an absolutely straight and level path for a distance of approximately 100 meters centered on the judges before starting the Half Reverse Cuban Eight. (Distance does not have to be accurate.)


1. Plane deviates left or right.

2. Does not hold constant altitude.

3. Gallops in yaw, roll, or pitch.

Ron's comments: It works out nicely if you set up a baseline 100 to 150 meters out. Call "Entering the box," when you cross the 60 degree from center point and then call "Straight flight out starting now." Begin counting to yourself and recall the number you reach when you cross center in front of the judges. Repeat this count for the second half and then call "Complete" and "Half reverse Cuban 8."

One Half Reverse Cuban 8

AMA Description:

Model pulls up and executes one-eighth (1/8) inside loop to 45 degrees, hesitates, does one-half (1/2) roll, hesitates, then performs five-eighths (5/8) inside loop back to level flight in opposite direction as entry.


1. Loop segments not round with the same size and radius.

2. Model not at 45 degrees before and after half roll.

3. Changes in heading in loop segments or after half roll.

4. Half roll not centered in 45 degree line.

5. No hesitation before or after half roll.

Ron's comments: Once you've established your 45 degree angle, count to yourself (say, to two or three), roll, and count up the same amount before pulling the 5/8 loop. This will help you center that half roll. This maneuver is performed at the upwind end of the box.

Straight Flight Back

AMA Description:

Immediately after the Half Reverse Cuban Eight the model shall fly back along The same line as the outgoing path.

The Straight Flight Back may be downgraded because:

1. Turns or wiggles during straight flight.

2. Change in altitude.

3. Gallops in pitch, yaw, or roll.

4. Flight not along straight flight out path.

Ron's comments: Call "Out of the box," after you've called this maneuver complete.

Stall Turn

AMA description:

Stall Turn With or Without( Roll(s):

Model executes one-quarter (1/4) loop to a vertical track, performs a stall turn through 180 degrees, then recovers with another one-quarter (1/4} loop to level flight in the opposite direction. Model may perform one-half full roll on the up or down or both legs of the maneuver. The length of the vertical segment is not a judging criteria.

Down grades:

1. Model not level at start and finish.

2. Track does not become exactly vertical.

3. Model not vertical at start and finish of rolls and stall turn.

4. Return path not parallel to entry path.

5. Exit not same altitude as entry.

6. Pivot radius greater than 1/2 wingspan

7. Pendulum movement after stall.

8. Loop segments not round with same size and radius.

Ron's comments: Call "Entering the box," when you get back to the downwind 60 degree point.

There are no rolls in the vertical portion of this maneuver when flown in novice. The center of this maneuver is the beginning of the quarter loop, so the vertical track will be offset from the center.

Call "Out of the box," at the downwind 60 degree point, then take your time while you're out to get the plane turned around and back on heading.

Immelmann Turn

AMA description:

The model starts the Immelmann flying straight and level, pulls up into one-half (1/2) loop immediately followed by one-half (1/2) roll and finishes flying straight and level exactly l80 degrees from the heading at entry.


1. Model not level at start.

2. Model deviates left or right during half loop.

3. Half loop not completed exactly above point of commencement of half loop.

4. Half roll does not commence immediately after half loop.

5. Plane deviates from a straight line during roll.

6. Model does not finish in level flight.

7. Model heading does not finish exactly opposite the direction of entry.

8. Half loop not round.

9. In Novice class and Sportsman class, maneuver does not start at center line.

Ron's comments: I found downgrade number 9 confusing, but it should be entered like the stall turn, with the loop portion beginning at the center. This means that the end of the half loop and the beginning of the half roll must be in the center. Don't forget to call "Entering the box," when you reach the downwind 60 degree point.

Split "S"

AMA description:

Model performs one-half (1/2) roll in level flight then immediately executes one-half inside loop to level flight in opposite direction as entry.


1. Half roll not 180 degrees.

2. Half loop not started immediately after half roll.

3. Half loop not constant radius.

4. Changes in heading.

5. One-half (1/2) roll not in level flight.

6. Model heading does not finish exactly opposite the direction of entry.

Ron's comments: This is done at the downwind end of the box.

Three Inside Loops

AMA description:

Model pulls up and executes three (3) consecutive loops; all loops shall be round and superimposed.


1. Loops not round.

2. Loops not superimposed.

3. Wings not level during loops.

4. Changes in heading during loops.

5. Exit not same altitude and heading as entry.

Ron's comments: Call "Exitting the box," after calling the maneuver complete.

One Horizontal Roll

AMA Description:

Model rolls at a uniform rate through one (1) complete revolution in either direction. Center is inverted portion of maneuver.


1. Changes in heading during roll.

2. Changes in altitude during roll.

3. Roll rate not constant.

4. Model does not perform exactly one roll, One Point per 15 Degree Rule.

Ron's comments: Call "Entering the box," when you reach the upwind 60 degree point. Try to make the roll take about a second to do and don't flick through it. You should need a short, small pulse of down elevetor in the middle. Call "Exitting the box," after calling the maneuver complete.


AMA Description:

The landing maneuver will start two (2) meters from the ground. The model flares smoothly to a nose-high attitude, dissipating flying speed, then smoothly touching the ground, within the landing zone, with the main wheels first, with no bouncing or changes in heading after touch down. The nose wheel on a tricycle gear and the tail wheel on a conventional gear (unless a "three (3) point landing" of mains and tail wheel touching simultaneously is executed) should settle gently to the ground after a brief rollout. The maneuver shall be considered complete once the plane has slowed below flying speed and has rolled straight for 15 meters. The landing zone shall be marked by lines placed perpendicular across the runway and spaced 30 meters apart. The width of the landing zone shall be normally the width of the runway, but in no case shall exceed 30 meters. Displacement of the touchdown point left or right from the runway area directly opposite the judges shall not be reason for downgrade as to centering, if the touchdown is within the zone. Downgrade for that is still within the defined runway, but outside the landing zone, will be proportionate to the distance outside the zone. Normally this zone will be placed directly in front of the judges' position; however, should runway conditions or safety considerations dictate, the zone may be displaced at the discretion of the Contest Director to such location as he/she may require. If such displacement is decided upon, it will be thoroughly discussed and defined to both pilots and judges, and no downgrade will be given for any touchdown within the zone but not centered in front of the judging panel.

The landing will not be downgraded if:

1. Plane rolls straight to a controlled stop in less than 15 meters.

2. Wing dips, unless they are not immediately corrected, which are caused by air turbulence.

3. The pilot elects to "slip to a landing," to handle a crosswind condition, in which case the upwind wing will be low.


1. Model impacts the ground due to lack of flare.

2. Model bounces after touchdown.

3. Changes in heading.

4. If model ends on its back, zero (0) points.

5. Model lands outside 30 meter zone.

6. If any undercarriage leg retracts on landing, zero (0) points.

7. Aircraft "porpoises" and/or wanders during approach and flare.

8. Aircraft lands in other than a nose-high attitude.

9. Aircraft lands outside landing area or runway, zero points.

10. Aircraft touches down while not straight to runway and ground track.

Ron's comments: Call "Landing begins at two meters," when you turn onto final and that will allow you time to catch your breath and square away your approach.

Return to GROTTO 2 pattern page.