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Thread: Candy Drop

  1. #1

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    Candy Drop

    Hi guys I'm toying with the idea of doing an aerial candy drop for a school function. I would be using a C-172... Any advice, ideas, "don't you dare" or "hey they're lots of fun" comments would be welcome. I've seen it done a few times but have never been involved myself.....

  2. #2

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    We have done this a few times using a small light sport style airplane. Something that would look the part of an ultralight. A 172 is kinda fast to be doing a candy drop. I bet others have done it but for us its a bit to fast to be dropping candy from.

    The kids love this stuff. But for saftey keep the kids off the runway until after the plane has dropped the candy. If something goes wrong and the pilot needs the runway you do not want a bunch of kids on it. So we hold the kids behind a rope line and once the plane clears the runway area the kids are let go.

    Again a lot of fun and a way to get others involved. My hat goes off to you for trying this. Good luck and let us all know how this goes, take some pics if you can.

    H.A.S.

  3. #3

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    Just a question or two. How would you comply with the 500' from persons or property regulation? Would the Feds consider it a "congested area" because of the kids and other people, and hold you to the 1000' regulation? Remember, it's not how YOU define the regulations, it's how the Feds define them that counts in any enforcement action against you. I'm not trying to pee on your party, I'm just trying to get you to consider all the possible problems and get the proper permission before hand to keep you and everyone else safe and violation free. One more thing, a good friend of mine died some years ago doing almost the same thing in a J-3 Cub. He was dropping ping pong balls for a city event in Montana, the balls were marked for prizes for the kids. Something happened, engine failure or he stalled it and hit a tennis court and was killed. Thank God no one else was injured. The impact didn't even seem that severe from the video. One of those TV shows that play "Shocking accidents" used to play it once in a while. I'm just saying to think every possible problem through beforehand and get the proper permission from the Feds so nothing bad happens.

  4. #4
    FlyingRon's Avatar
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    They did a few candy drops in conjunction of the visit of the Berlin Airlift plane. Bars on small parachutes but still not dropped over the kids. We had some adults go out and retrieve them and bring them back to the crowd line.

    You don't also want this to end up like a WKRP episode: As God as my witness...

  5. #5

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    This falls under (FAR) 14 CFR 91.15. Historically, dropping candy has been officially viewed as not presenting a hazard.

    If you tape a small bit of crepe paper to each piece of candy, they will be more visible and fall more slowly.

    For safety you might consider having two people in the aircraft, one to fly and one to call course changes and drop candy. Don't fly too low, too slow, and think about wind drift during the decent of the candy.

    I have seen this done over a high school sports stadium.

    Be safe,

    Wes

  6. #6
    EAA Staff / Moderator Zack Baughman's Avatar
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    Somewhat humorous story regarding a candy drop. In 2004 while at SNF, some Timeless Voices volunteers and I had the opportunity to interview Paul Tibbets (pilot of the B-29 "Enola Gay"). I always ask people what their first aviation memory is, and Paul's first aviation memory was being picked out of a crowd of boys by Doug Davis (later to become famous as the winner of the 1929 National Air Races flying the Travel Air Mystery Ship) to serve as his "bombardier" while dropping Baby Ruth candy bars with handkerchief parachutes over Hialeah Racetrack and Miami Beach in 1927. The humorous part came later in the week, when we were able to interview a P-47 veteran, Frank Fong. Frank's first aviation memory was standing in the crowd at Hialeah Racetrack watching Doug Davis drop Baby Ruth candy bars out of his airplane! Frank could hardly believe it when we told him that the kid in the airplane with Davis was none other than Paul Tibbets. It truly is a small world...

    Zack

  7. #7
    Cary's Avatar
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    This wouldn't be a lot different from flour bombing, often done at small fly-ins around the country. As is often said, the safest place to be is on the target itself, as it's not easy to hit it. A couple years ago at a private strip fly-in, all the young kids stayed on the target during the bombing. But as the bombardiers got closer and closer, one of the kids decided it was getting too close for his comfort, so he decided to move away from the target. You guessed it--he took a direct hit on the next run! It's amazing how much coverage half a cup of flour provides. No damage--but he was covered.

    Cary
    "I have slipped the surly bonds of earth...,
    put out my hand and touched the face of God." J.G. Magee

  8. #8
    FWIW, EAA risk management refuses to cover any chapter activity that involves dropping things from an aircraft. Especially flour bombing and likely a candy drop.

    -CubBuilder

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingRon View Post
    They did a few candy drops in conjunction of the visit of the Berlin Airlift plane. Bars on small parachutes but still not dropped over the kids. We had some adults go out and retrieve them and bring them back to the crowd line.

    You don't also want this to end up like a WKRP episode: As God as my witness...
    "... I thought Hershey bars could fly!"???? :-)

    Ron Wanttaja

  10. #10

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    Hold the little ones back and everyone else. No one flies over any group of people. It also takes more then the PIC to do this, this is a two man operation. Anything else is foolish.

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