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Member postings for Nigel Heather

Here is a list of all the postings Nigel Heather has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Flying with Spectacles
10/01/2021 20:49:16


Thinking I may be coming across as awkward and ignoring advice. Hope not, I certainly don't mean too and I apologise if I am, I appreciate all the feedback.

What I have learned from this thread so far is that I may have asked the wrong question - or just one of the questions that is important to me.

I asked are varifocals okay for flying - the consensus seems to be that they are very good - so I can tick that one off as answered.

The other question, it dawns on me, is whether varifocals are any good for computer work. The answer to that doesn't seem to be so clear cut, some have no problems and others are saying that they are not so good.

My other issue is that my eyesight issues are at most a problem under 2 metres or so.

So my question about the value of varifocals at £300 is not so much about the money but whether they are worthwhile if they are are mostly dealing with 2m and below and not so good at that.

My problem with flying remains though. If I wear single prescription distance lenses I can see to fly. If I don't wear glasses at all I can also see to fly, though not quite as sharp. But in either case if I look down at the transmitter I can't really see it.



10/01/2021 20:34:29
Posted by Bruce Collinson on 10/01/2021 19:49:59:

If they cost £300, as I recall my current varis did, they only need to save a long range episode of disorientation or numb thumbs and you’re probably in front.

No problem with £300 if that is the answer - don’t forget that, for me, that is £300 every two years.

Also don’t forget that my distance eyesight is not that bad, beyond about 2m I can function without glasses. Spectacles do make things a little sharper but there isn’t a lot in it.

But if the varifocals work for work then fantastic, £300 is a bargain but I am also faced with the prospect of an additional £200 for the occupationals - so £500 every two years.



10/01/2021 19:07:26
Posted by Ron Gray on 10/01/2021 13:29:00:

When I went to get my glasses the optician went through the type of use I would need them for and made copious notes about computer screen distance and position from chair plus position I was comfortable reading a book from plus they wanted a clearer understanding of the model flying side of things. These, as I understand it, gave them sufficient information to allow them to make the lenses with suitable lens areas for my needs. When I got them I wasn’t quite happy with the setting they had for computer work, no problem they made some more which were ‘ are spot on. Yes, they weren’t cheap but you pays your money etc etc.

I had my test done at SpecSavers. Generally I have found them good, not the cheapest on their own but with their two for one deals they come out pretty good.

Still expensive though - I appreciate that I could spend a lot more but even with SpecSavers I'm looking at £300 for varifocals. SpecSavers don't put in as much attention as you describe though. I had a previous go with 'occupationals' where I was looking for something to negate the need for a headband visor for my plastic model making. I explained exactly what I needed, I took in my optivisor, told them the dioptre of the lens, showed them examples of wargaming figures that I make and paint. I even questions whether what I was asking for was even possible. Of course I was told it was, collected them and the detail section wasn't even close to my optivsor headband. I took them back querying and was very surprised to hear "what you were asking for isn't possible so we just did the best we could". They did refund, but it annoyed me that they ignored what I asked for, rather than saying "it wasn't possible" decided to chase the sale instead.

Back to varifocals - if I were confident that £300 would do everything I need (for the next two years), if they were all I was buying, then that wouldn't be a problem. But if I need the occupational as well that is another £200.

Again, £500 is a lot of money but I would pay it if I were certain of getting a good solution.



10/01/2021 18:16:45
Posted by i12fly on 10/01/2021 17:01:55:

Nigel, Occupational lens are normally varifocal, the difference is that the changover point is higher up the lens so that you can read/see screen clearly further up the lens so you don't have to tilt your head back. Its just that you don't get as much lens area for distance

Occupational lenses, well the ones that have been suggested to me, only have two regions, the upper set at computer monitor distance and the lower set to reading distance.

I have single vision for IT at the moment, they are great at the computer but then when I glance down to read or write something the distance is a little too great so is a little out of focus which puts strain on my eyes.

Varifocal lenses have three or four different vision zones.



10/01/2021 13:08:48
Posted by Ray Wood 4 on 10/01/2021 12:57:10:

Hi Nigel,

If you mostly use a laptop on the desk Varifocals will be fine as you are naturally looking down, but if you use a big monitor at the correct height ie looking straight ahead like I do, and as Shaun mentioned they are no good irrespective of how expensive they are as you will be using the distance part of the lens.

Regards Ray

Thanks, that is very useful. It is what I thought to be honest - we are supposed to have monitors but as I travel around it doesn’t always work like that. Even when I do have a monitor I then to use it as a second screen along with my laptop screen.

Sounds like I definitely need the occupationals and I feel happy with that purchase because I feel that I’m getting value for money because it covers where my eyesight is bad.

Then whether I get varifocals which will cost the best part of £300, less keen on that because it doesn’t feel great value for money because my eyesight isn’t so bad beyond 1m.

I currently have a set of RapidEyeWear Innovation Plus (the ones advertised in BMFA News) with a single prescription. If I vontinue using them I would need to get the prescription changed but I notice that they also do bifocals - has anyone tried those - my gut feel is that they are on the cheap side so my not be that good.



10/01/2021 12:14:35

It is a bit of a dilemma to be honest.

I’ve had the distance issue all my life, but it is a pretty mild prescription. To be honest I can manage without and is really only noticeable when reading roadsigns in the distance when driving.

I have often found myself driving and flying without my glasses without noticing.

And then was the extent of my eyesight issues until around 50 years old, then my reading (and computer screen) sight started to drop off and seems to get a little worse with each year.

Beyond a metre I am fine, but below that for computer use and reading I need glasses - without it is pretty much a blur.

I’m an IT consultant so on computers practically all day.

So my absolute need is computer/reading/craft near sight and I suspect the occupational lenses will be best for that.

The annoyance with flying is that I can do without distance glasses but they do help a little, but when wearing them I can’t see my TX screen at all. It would be nice to do both. Likewise, when I am driving I can’t read detail on the dashboard.

I absolutely get the need for the occupationals but should I get some varifocals too. I know it is best to ask the optician but it is always in the back of my mind that they would prefer to sell two sets of glasses rather than one.



10/01/2021 09:20:01

Laser surgery - must admit I’m a little nervous, I appreciate that there are millions of successful operations and very few problematic ones but I still don’t like the chance.

The other thing is that I have been advised that it is not really suitable if your prescription changes often. I get tested every year and my prescription has always been different. Small changes I take with a pinch of salt, I reckon if I had a test immediately followed by a second test the too results would not be the same - there is too much “is A better than B”, “what about C” which eventually ends up with it being hard to tell so flip a coin - heads will create one prescription and tails a second.

But in most cases there is a noticeable degradation with each test and I think that is less than ideal for laser surgery.



10/01/2021 08:35:26

Thanks for all the info. Going to try some varifocals and definitely the top lens type.

I have three real needs


Model Making

Computer Use (I use computers all day at work, also a lot at home).

I have single vision for driving - I find that I cannot read the dashboard with these - for all the main stuff it is okay because I know what I am expecting to see (speedometer for example) but for the radio, sat nav, info screen I have no chance with the glasses on. Will be interesting to see if varifocals fix that.

For model making, my optician said that glasses were not the answer - should stick with the optivsor.



09/01/2021 22:35:39

Thanks for the info and advice.

I wondered about varifocals but wasn’t sure whether the reduced area for distance would be good enough flying.

Laser surgery scares me a little and I wonder whether my eyesight is changing too often to make it viable.



09/01/2021 21:50:54

I have needed spectacles for distance sinceI was young. It is quite a mild prescription though it is getting worse with age (I’m now 57).

That on it’s own isn’t such a problem I have always worn single-vision lenses.

But with age my reading distance sight has also been degrading and has reached the point where I need spectacles to read - including the transmitter screen.

So at the moment I use single-vision to fly and can’t see anything on my transmitter screen while flying. That’s not much of an inconvenience but when in the pits I have to swap back to reading glasses.

It’s a bit of a faff and I wonder what other options there are.

Anyone here fly with bifocal, varifocal or occupational spectacles?



Thread: Solafilm and Alternatives
05/06/2020 22:50:56
Posted by Alan Gorham_ on 05/06/2020 20:23:10:

You'll find it pretty difficult to locate fresh stocks of Solarfilm anywhere since they ceased production permanently a few years ago. Their website st is selling off remnants.

Other alternatives are Oracover, easycoat and films from Hobbyking and Aliexpress and banggood.

That explains a lot - I’m clearly out of touch.

Will look at those that you suggest.



05/06/2020 20:19:35

Can't say I'm surprised but SolaFilm seems very hard to come by and/or expensive these days (and I'm talking about the days before Covid).

I guess ARTF and foamies has really taken a huge bite out of that market.

I live reasonably close to one of the largest RC model shops in the country and yet their stock of SolaFilm is minimal.

Are there any alternatives I should be looking at.



Thread: RCM&E Plans Available?
05/06/2020 19:04:02

Recently, when I wanted the plan for the Ohmen from the October 2018 edition, initially I was pointed towards Sarik but then I had the idea of checking eBay. Found sellers with a large range of mint copies of magazines complete with plans. Was able to buy the magazine with plan very cheaply.

To give you an idea, Sarik charges £16.50 plus p&p  for the plan but I was able to buy the magazine for £4.99.

Maybe I was lucky but worth checking first.



Edited By Nigel Heather on 05/06/2020 19:07:54

Edited By Nigel Heather on 05/06/2020 19:10:16

Thread: BMFA Membership Card
22/02/2020 13:07:00

My card has just turned up, all seems correct but I notice the validity date

Valid: 1/1/2020

Expires 31/12/2020


Now I'm not going to moan about the 52 days use I missed out on and demand a pro-rated 49.7p back (yes I have accounted for it being a leap year) but more to question what happens next year.

I expect the card process to be more mature and established by then but how do BMFA and Vectis intend to handle continuity. The BMFA renewal window doesn't even open up until the first weeks of December - do I believe that even if I pay up promptly on first available day that BMFA will take my order, get it across to Vectis, who will print my card and send it out to arrive before the 1/1/2021 - not really, I would be presently surprised if that could be achieved, but I won't be holding my breath.

So what happens then as we become unaccustomed to using the cards - are we going to have to deal with a gap at the beginning of each year when our membership of the scheme has expired.




Edited By Nigel Heather on 22/02/2020 13:08:03

Thread: Jammed OS engines
22/02/2020 08:45:05

If you are lucky it will just be gummed up castor oil and a cleaning solvent like WD40 or white spirit or cellulose thinners or brake cleaner will break that down. Mind you petrol would have worked too - did you remove the carb and glow plug when soaking - and did you try turning the engine periodically.

If it is ceased due to rust they may be beyond economical repair or safe operation.

Have you tried taking the backplate off to look inside - will give you an idea of whether there is any rust.

The other trick is to heat it in a pan of water, that will soften any gunge and the expansion will help release the puston from the liner. Make sure you lubricate thoroughly and ideally run afterwards as you don’t want the engine left with any water inside.




Edited By Nigel Heather on 22/02/2020 08:46:14

Thread: BMFA Membership Card
22/02/2020 07:19:36
Posted by Andy Symons - BMFA on 21/02/2020 18:14:52:
Posted by Barrie Lever on 21/02/2020 18:05:49:


Looks like there is a heap of money to be saved with the BMFA membership card, seems like you might have to slightly change your shopping habit to using these digital gift cards alike Andy eluded to.

If you can shift your mind on that there seems to be pretty much 5% of at Tesco's on store shopping about the same at John Lewis, Waitrose and M&S.

Seems like this model flying just got a lot cheaper.

Please pick me up if I have got this wrong.


You have it about right, we have just got 5% of our weekly shop at tesco by buying a preloaded gift card before we went. Take about a minute to do and just scanned my phone at the till. Really quite simple but just a bit different to normal.

Pretty much the same offers that I can get in the two other schemes that I have access to. But the Tesco one caught my eye as we shop there every week - it’s 4% by the way not 5% but it will still pay for the card 100 times over if I just use it for that.

Unfortunately, no Amazon (as teased in some of the BMFA promotional material) but I was expecting that, no one that I am aware of does Amazon.

What I generally find with these schemes is that they are mostly for stores that I wouldn’t normally use because I can find cheaper and better service elsewhere. A good example, being Currys, wouldn’t normally touch them with a barge pole but once in a blue moon they have a deal that is better than anywhere else - one such case was leading up to Christmas and they had the Nintendo switch cheaper than anywhere else so I used my reward scheme (not the BMFA one) to save another £40 on the package. But those are rare, usually I find the savings don’t even bring them down to competitor prices.



Thread: CAA ID number discussion
21/02/2020 16:32:07
Posted by Dickw on 21/02/2020 16:00:42:
Posted by Nigel Heather on 21/02/2020 15:52:06:


My number begins with ‘OP-‘ , are they all like that, a bit nugatory, meaning ‘Operator’ or is it just a councidence.


Edited By Nigel Heather on 21/02/2020 15:52:21

I believe they all begin with OP-.

If you get a Flyer ID from the CAA they beging FLY-


Thought they might - well that is a waste of three characters.


21/02/2020 15:52:06

Just got mine too.

My number begins with ‘OP-‘ , are they all like that, a bit nugatory, meaning ‘Operator’ or is it just a councidence.



Edited By Nigel Heather on 21/02/2020 15:52:21

Thread: BMFA Membership Card
21/02/2020 10:15:05
Posted by Andy Symons - BMFA on 21/02/2020 10:09:31:

On the card and getting discounts, so far for me its working well, saved £7.00 at Argos and another £5 at B&Q so far. Not bad for £3.50.

I'm decorating the house at the moment so scope for more savings too.

Edited By Andy Symons - BMFA on 21/02/2020 10:10:08

Rubbing it in that you have your card devil



21/02/2020 07:52:16
Posted by SR 71 on 20/02/2020 23:57:09:

I dont know my membership number, as i say i have heard nothing, been checking my emails including the spam every day,

Did you pay online in the BMFA Portal. If so, as Andy siad, you should have got email confirmations pretty instantly. If you didn’t get these emails then easy to check - just log in to the portal and check the membership status - it should show both the BMFA and CAA as active.

Pretty sure there has been a magazine this year too, did you get that?



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