The Rules

GMAC’s 50+ years of flying operations experience has been captured in our Code of Conduct. The primary purpose of this manual is to guide the members towards a positive experience in the Club. The Manual looks into:

  • safety – we take all precations to avoid pilot’s and observers personal injuries, damage to the airplanes and club facilities, damage to third parties and environment
  • minimise impact on our neighbours and environment – GMAC being positioned at leased council grounds and within suburbs is surrunded by real estate, pony club, golf course and Parks. We have been co-existing well within this environment due to a set of flying constrains adopted by our Club and observed by our pilots and guests.
  • maximise member’s enjoyment – we share the club facilities among all members and mutual respect and great cameradery that we enjoy is underpinned not only by mutual respect but also a set of well desigend rules

Our Code of Conduct fully aligns with and further extends the Model Aircraft Associations Australia (MAAA) Manual of Procedures (MOP), Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) regulations CASR 1998 Part 101 and MAAA rules. Urban space is getting more and more crowded and considering the sensitive location of our Club the Club Rules has been extended to provide for this. Primary examples here are the noise limit introduced within the Club and flying space restrictions. While currently there is no legal requirements to reduce the noise levels, our Club has voluntarily introduced the noise limit to minimise impact on our neighbours and environment.

Some of the most important legal requirements while operating models are listed here:

  • do not to create a hazard to people or property
  • fly in visual line of sight (VLOS)
  • clear of the movement areas, runways and the approach and departure paths of aerodromes
  • below 400 ft Above Ground Level (GMAC has CASA granted exemption allowing us to operate up to 900 feet)
  • clear of a populous area, as defined under the regulations
  • at least 30 m clear of people not directly associated with the flight of the aircrafs

All of our Members take active involvement in coaching and correcting new and established pilots when it comes to the flying rules. Our Instructors and Operations Manager take very active role in this function and are empowered to take all necessary steps towards enforcing safe environment for all involved. Our approach is through education and discussion as we all understand that flying remote aircraft can be difficult at times, especially for less experienced pilots.

Visitors to GMAC are required to sign the ‘Visitors Book’ in the Club House in conjunction with a GMAC member. Only current MAAA accredited Solo pilots may fly unsupervised. We ask that any visitors please:

  • Remain behind all fences. Young children need to be supervised.
  • Not stand on the road at the end of our runway where the models will be flying very low.
  • Not enter the fenced off pits area unless specifically invited.
  • Keep your pets on a lead at all times.
  • Our aircraft are fragile, but their engines are quite powerful and have razor-sharp propellers spinning at very high speed.

On arrival aircraft and equipment can be unloaded from your car in the drop off area and placed in the Pits. Once you have unloaded your car, you need to park your car in the car parking area behind the club house. No fly zones are clearly marked on the site plan.

All Club and visiting pilots must be familar with the GMAC Code of Conduct that defines our local flying rules. Brief summary of some of the local rules include:

  • Engine noise must not exceed 94dB (measured 3m from front and side with model at 1m high, using the clubs noise meter)
  • All aircraft must have a failsafe function set up, and be prepared to demonstrate it’s function, before flight
  • Stay within the defined flying area at all times. Do not fly behind the safety line that extends along the closer runway boundary the the left and right
  • No aircraft can exceed the 700 feet AGL ceiling (more explanation below)
  • All flying pilots must be positioned within the pilot box and verbally indicate they intentions to other pilots
  • Large and Giant models must have a current Flying Permit avaiable and can only be flown by the specified pilot
  • Flying time is 9.00 am to 8.00pm, or daylight hours if shorter. Electric aircrafts may operate any time during daylight hours
  • All FPV flying (with multi-rotor racing exception restricted to the FPV area) must have an allocated observer
  • No flying of any kind at the total fire ban days

Our Club has an increased height clearance (more than the standard 400 feet above the ground level (AGL)) granted by CASA and the Club rules allow us to fly up to 700 feet AGL that is well within the ceiling granted by CASA. Pilots flying above 400′ and up to 700′ must contain the lateral distance to the model within 300m radius.

We are located below the C Class control zone step with the Lower Limit (LL) at 1500 feet above the mean sea level (AMSL). The highest ground elevation in our vicinity is 500 feet AMSL that allows us flying to 1200 feet AMSL (or 700 AGL). That provides us with 300 feet separation from the controlled space. If it is all confusing, we can fly up to 700 feet above our runway.

Please remember that there is always a possibility that we might see air traffic operating in our area below the C Class space coming as low as 500 feet AGL. This traffic has always right of way and all models must immediately descent below 400 feet or land if required to avoid coming any near the overflying aircraft. All Club members in the vicinity of the flying areas are observers on the lookout for manned aircraft coming into the flying area and are required to warn the flying members of the approaching aircraft.

Melbourne Visual Terminal Chart showing GMAC location

Flight circuit direction is determined by the direction of the wind:

  • Northerly – Counter Clock wise
  • Southerly – Clock wise

No flying is permitted on days of Total Fire Ban

CFA link to check Total Fire Ban

This link points to an external Ok2Fly application approved by CASA that maps the areas where models may be operated OK2FLY