The World 3D Format

3DX - The world format for 3D competition

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Here at 3DHQ we receive a lot of enquiries about 3DX and also the link between 3DX and 3D Masters. We are delighted to be asked questions so that we have the opportunity to answer them, but below we try to deal with some of the most Frequently Asked Questions.



I would like to know how you select the pilots that are accepted in 3D Masters – Sportsman Class. I’ve heard that having a Spanish 3DX event means that the winner of 3DX Spain will be the only Spanish person accepted there.


3D Masters places will NOT be exclusive to 3DX winners at this time, nor is there a limit to the number of pilots accepted from a given country. With so few places (60) to satisfy a world demand, 3DX will give us a good indication of capability and a good performance will certainly impress the Selection Committee. There is a 3DX in Spain each year, and we suggest that you try your best to win it.

We know that the above does not fully answer your question and that is because there is no finite answer at the moment. We try to find a balance of Nationalities, Ages, Machines, past achievement, future promise and ability to fill the 3D Masters entry list. The nightmare is that we may miss a future World Champion by failing to offer them a place – we almost missed Jae Hong Lee from Korea in 2007. When it reaches maturity, 3DX will reduce the likelihood of this, but until then, compete in every 3DX event you can, send in your form and hope!


How are the Judging Standards for 3DX decided, and how can we compare results from one country to another?

A At the moment 3DX is in its infancy and it is not possible to relate directly between events. However, we are spending as much time as possible monitoring events and we have in hand a training programme that will help us to rationalise scoring. In short, we intend to implement a series of Training Days to train both pilots and judges. We have run 2 of these in the past as non-competitive opportunities for 3D pilots to be assessed by a panel of judges, some experienced and some not. The outcome of the day is that pilots go away with some very useful feedback about their performance, AND we train judges at the same time. If you have a chance, subscribe to a Training Day, you will certainly find it useful.

The first year of 3DX is drawing to a close. Has it been successful?


Certainly, from many perspectives:-

Of all the events run in 2007, every Organiser has said that they want to do it again next year. 3DX is as much about recruiting Organisers as it is pilots and Judges, and the 3DX format gives Organisers a flying start. In addition to the 2007 events, we have also received enquiries for 3DX events in many other countries, and we hope that the support we can offer will encourage those Organisers to have a go.

Many more Pilots have now competed in a 3D contest than would have been the case if 3DX did not exist.

Sponsors have seen their brand represented at a worldwide level, something they would not have been able to achieve without supporting 3DX.

Q I don't think 3DX caters enough for lower ability pilots. We need to be looking at a more grassroots level of flyer, the 'average Clubman’. Haven't you missed out these keen but 'average' flyers?

We expect that 3DX Events will be organised at two distinct levels, the small local event and the larger regional 3DX event.

In the case of the small event, a group of individuals, a Club, or a Local Area will be able to have their own 3DX event by using Peer-judging plus a Moderator in order to run a simple, informal competition, the Grass-roots of 3DX - as it says in the Key Elements of the 3DX Format page.

Q How do I run a 3DX competition , or get one started?

Simply meet up with a few like-minded pilots and arrange your own 3DX event using peer-judging. It’s all part of the 3DX remit. If you can get an experienced 3D pilot to act as Moderator, then he will be able to put you right as to calling, timing etc. By the end of your ‘event’, the best man will win because we have found that the best way to judge a 3D pilot is to ask other 3D pilots.

As well as publishing established 3DX events in the diary; we will also be publishing details of ‘events in the making’ so that Organisers can obtain an indication of how popular their proposed event will be. All this stuff will begin to surface on the website in the New Year, expect quite a few upgrades coming soon.

We sincerely expect several competitions to be proposed for the New Year, at Club, County or Regional level.

Q What's a minimum level of manoeuvres for a 3DX competition?
A The 3DX Set Manoeuvres run from quite basic 3D Manoeuvres such as Travelling Backwards Flip, 2 x 4 point Backward Roll, 540 Bounce, Stationary Metronomes, Pie Dish, Figure 8 Inverted Circuit and an Auto. Anything much less than that, and it can hardly be called ‘3D’. All you have to do is have a go at 5 of those and then do a couple of minutes of Freestyle, and you have a 3DX event.

We have tried to make 3DX as universally accessible as possible, and the important element to consider is the ‘scope’ of each event. In the future we expect to be seeing 3DX events at all levels, from the local informal event through the regional event (such as Clubman 3DX) to large international events. In each case, the scope will vary, but the important thing to remember is that everyone is flying to the same format.

The essence of 3D flying is the fact that it changes and evolves rapidly – which makes it exciting and keeps the younger generation interested. By tying the 3DX format and manoeuvres to 3D Masters, the 3DX pilot is guaranteed current, challenging manoeuvres each year, and traceability to the world’s biggest 3D event, 3D Masters.

Q Where do you see 3DX going over the coming years?

As years go by, the 3DX Community will grow to create a tiered system of interconnecting events throughout the world. The benefit to pilots is that they can sort out their Set Manoeuvres and maybe Freestyle at the beginning of the season and then enter various events through the year, monitoring their improvement (and setbacks) as they go.

We see 2007 as the first year of many years watching and helping the 3D movement throughout the world grow. That growth depends as much upon input at the grass roots level as it does at the top, let’s hope you’ll be able to say you were into 3DX right at the start.

Q Is 3DX proposing to ban 'Swashplate Gyros'?
A No way! 3DX is a champion of innovation, and we will ensure that technological development is given a platform upon which to prove itself for the overall benefit of 3D. Provided there are no obvious safety implications in the use of an innovation, then as far as 3DX is concerned, it is to be encouraged. If the development causes a particular Manufacturer or Organisation to have a perceived advantage, then Human Nature will ensure that competitors will create something equivalent or better to counteract that advantage. It is the way of the world and in the long run, everyone benefits.
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