According to Bill Hannan’s book Peanut Power! sometime around 1967 a few members of the Connecticut Flying Aces Club “were reminiscing about the pre-war kits and how much fun they had been. They managed to unearth some plans of the early kits, featuring models with twelve-inch wing-spans [rules later expanded to thirteen inch spans], and decided to organize a contest. With a stroke of genius, they named the proposed class ‘Peanut Scale’.” The intention was to create a flying event “with the accent on simplicity and fun.”
The first Peanut event was in 1968 in California with 7 1/2 official entries (the 1/2 model was not finished). The flight times of these tiny rubber powered balsa wood and tissue paper models averaged little over twenty seconds. In the following years interest in Peanut Scale models expanded oversees to many European countries, where hobbyists shipped their models to the United States to compete.
In 1974 the first Postal Peanut contest was conceived which involved modelers from around the world to send their peanuts to Long Beach, CA to compete. Over 400 entry blank requests were received resulting with 104 peanuts arriving from countries including: Canada, Australia, Czechoslovakia, England, France, Germany, Kuwait and New Zealand.
Follow this link to Bill Hannan’s fascinating article about Peanut Scale aircraft from the 1974-1975 Aeromodeller Annual.
2017/06/05 – I’ve lately been interested in balsa and tissue construction airplanes, particularly Peanut Scale Aircraft. I will be sharing some of my resources, builds and experiences here as they unfold. If you are interested in peanuts and want to share plans or photos please share them with me. I’m a rookie, and I’ll be sharing my progress with you all. Check back in a bit and I’m sure there will be more info about this exciting hobby!
2018/09/25 – It’s been a while since I’ve added information, articles or plans to this Peanut Scale / Free Flight site. Too busy building models (most of which I haven’t posed about here, for more up to date info on my progress follow me (jchismar) on Instagram). Peanut models have been put to the back burner in my workshop. I’ve been focusing on Embryo and Old Timer free flight models to get practice trimming and flying.
However, I’ve added a few handy rubber motor calculators to the Peanut Scale menu (top of page). There’s a calculator to estimate how much rubber to use on any particular model and another to estimate the maximum amount of turns for a particular motor. Notice I said “estimate”. Anyone familiar with the hobby knows there are many factors that affect pretty much everything regarding free flight rubber powered models. That said, I’ve found these calculators helpful with my models, motors and flights.