Documents on homebuilding

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We provide copies of documents (printed in foreign countries, only written in English), a french bulletin and other french documents we ourselves print.

There are the following documents :

A videotape will probably be edited before the end of 2002. It will be about building a hot air balloon.

Le bulletin de la Construction Amateur d'Aérostats Française (CAAF) or french balloon homebuilding bulletin. Only in french.

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Few words about the subject

In France, the movment of homebuilding is very small for now and we are several to think that it is going to change in the very close future. Why some people hesitate to begin a building project, despite the fact they are interrested in ? First, there is little homebuilt balloons flying in France, and few probability to know another pilot who has built.

There is a lack of information about the subject. You can start from nothing (that is a difficult way to do), and make everything yourself. Otherwise, you can go to USA to see how US people do homebuild. You can there buy documentations, books and then translate them, without forgetting to make the good calculations between metric and english system (foot, inches...). You then have to find material suppliers in your own country. So, you have to use methods and plans designed by people living very far from you, and it is not so easy to get more informations about this fabric manufacturer or this tape supplier, or about law texts.

Following numerous speakings with pilots who wanted to built themselves a balloon, and having myself built two balloons (1998 and 2001), I began at the end of 1997 to develop the french homebuilding movement. How did I do this ? Firstly, I printed an information bulletin speaking about homebuilding. There are four issues a year (in French, of course !). In this bulletin, the reader can find a lot of informations, like :

This bulletin is written for the homebuilder, but also for the pilot who wants to understand a lot of things about the technical part of the ballooning science. So he can make more maintenance actions on his balloon (in accordance with the maintenance manuel of course).

Who will write in the bulletin ? Anybody who wants to add interesting informations. And some parts of the BBJ (Balloon Builder Journal) will be translated and printed in the french bulletin.

to subscribe

Since december 1997, there is in France a bulletin speaking about balloon homebuilding (gas, airship, model, hot air). We want that bulletin to be an exchange media for ideas, advices, addresses, regulation texts, plans, building experience... So, in the first numbers, you will find the informations needed to conceive a hot air balloon.

You can read the bulletin only to satisfy your curiosity : you will find in the bulletin many informations about the knowledge of the balloon, the maintenance, the physical principes...
The bulletin is printed by the club "Montgolfière France Records".

To register, you will find here a downloable file (word6/7 without virus !). Print it and send it. If you do not have a Word reader, do not panic : send me an email and I shall send you a printed subscription form.The Word File.

old issues you can buy

CAAF#01 Presentation. The parts of an enveloppe. How to choose the volume ? The ARDC atmosphere. Table of informations about some units we often use : UK system, metric system, how to convert... The surface from the volume. How to choose a fabric ? A first list of suppliers 20p
CAAF#02 The sewing machine. Buying together. How to design the panels ? How to choose the shape of the enveloppe, how to calculate the gores ? Building report (cutting step). List of subscriber at the 1st march 98. Some projects. The DIM Spi52C fabric. The fabric suppliers. A sumary of the administratives steps for the building process. A tape provider. 20p
CAAF#03 Sewing. A very interesting fabric supplier. The porosity of fabrics. Size of essential parts. Tapes : inside or outside ? Better than Nylon ? Building report (sewing step). Update of the subscriber list. Some projects. More informations about the CNRA process. Registration marks and id card. 20p
CAAF#04 How Nylon lasts under UV. Getting materials from an old enveloppe. Hennetier Hot air balloon building report. Threads. Parts of the burner. David Barker, who has already built 6 burners. Deramecourt Hot air balloon building report. Necessary tools to build an enveloppe. Update of the subscriber list. Technical informations about thread. What is the volume of a balloon ? 20p
CAAF#05 The panel cutting process, from A to Z. The Sébastien Rolland hot air balloon picture (3000 cu.m.). The radio-controlled hot air model from A Fussel. Building the "VULCAIN" burner. Readers' Letters. 18p
CAAF#06 The calculation of the enveloppe-burner frame cables. Building of a traditionnal basket. How the fabric lasts under UV effects (2). Can we be confident with the suppliers ? Sewing the tapes. Building a basket, more information. 20p
CAAF#07 Different settings of a sewing machine 1/2. Building a basket top. Second mills Nomex. Building a burner. Some projects. 22p
CAAF#08 Different settings of a sewing machine 2/2. Picture of a basket top. The regulator of a liquid gas pilot light. Building the "VULCAIN" burner (2). Some projects. The first balloon. CNRA administrative form. Making protections for cable-load tapes link at the bottom of the enveloppe. 20p
CAAF#09 The French "ultra-light" balloons class. Question to Mr Bezeau, from GSAC : the rebuilding. Deramecourt D20/3000P Hot air balloon building report. Work chart : assembling the balloon. The first homebuilt hot air balloon ? Getting a company to cut the panels, it's possible. Building youselves the cables, it is possible ! Some projects. 20p
CAAF#10 Work chart provides help in the building process. Rebuilding (2). The top tapes web. Adding a cord at the top to prevent the parachute to be turned around. Sewing the top ring. Shape and building of the parachute. Building a scoop. Building a traditionnal basket. Some projects. Norma. The NF G 07 001 norma. 22p
CAAF#11 Boland balloons. Where to place the horizontal tapes. Selling an homebuilt. A Korean balloon. A rapid deflation system : the RDS from Sky balloons. Free thoughs. Enveloppe stress calculation. P Lusley's hot air balloon cutting report. Some projects. Readers letters. 20p
CAAF#12 Building a cylinder. New adress. The fabric's porosity. The NF G 07-154 norma. An overview of the Aérophile SA balloons. How to fasten the traction cords. Quality of sewing. Building a scoop (2). A quick release with building scraps. Gaps in sewing. A fast deflation system : the "trivent" from Thunder & Colt. A software to design balloons. Some projects. 22p
Special double issue about baskets. Report of the building a wicker traditionnal basket. Building of an innovative basket. Some words about wicker and rattan. Weaving points. Balloon meet and homebuilding course. Knots for balloon. Some projects. 42p
double price
CAAF#15 News about balloon calculation software. Enveloppe's banners. Differences in processes of homebuilding between USA and France. Calculation of balloon's volume. A 1600 cu.m. ready to built. 2001 homebuilding training course. 2002 homebuilding training course. Trick. Simplified administrative process. Readers letters. Building a basket - additional information. 22p
CAAF#16 Temperature in a balloon. Controlling the temperature. Tricks. A rapid deflation system. Shape evolution. David Barker's burners. Parachute : calculation of centring cords, and locate the Velcros. A transportation cylinder. Ultra-lights balloons : an answer from Cameron to the homebuilders. Some projects. 20p
CAAF#17 Vents. Regulation about VHF tranceivers, LSA, power. A 2200 cu.m. ready to built. Behaviour of a balloon in a cold descent. Readers letters. Some projects. 20p
CAAF#18 Risks of the noise of a burner. 1900 cu.m. F-PCSB hot air balloon building report. Building a collapsible basket. Advices for weaving a wicker basket. 2002 homebuilding training course. 2003 homebuilding training course. Some projects. 20p
CAAF#19 An original fan. Security factors. Report of building F-PCSB, collapsible basket. Some buildings from USA. Repair of a basket. Readers letters. A motorized cloud-hopper. Rebuilt. Some projects. 20p
CAAF#20 Gaz balloon building. The parts of a gaz balloon. Is it possible to avoid pulleys in a balloon ? Class V UltraLights. To travel with a homebuilt. Building a XPDR box. Jean-Claude Talut, homebuilder. Some points to check in case of trouble with the sewing machine. Some projects. Readers letters. 20p
CAAF#21 Jean-Claude Talut, homebuilder. Building report : cutting of a 2250 cu.m. Build a sewing guide. Changes in regulations of ULM and CNRA/CNSK. "Objectif Base Dirigeables" club. Light of the sewing. Pull and center lines. Report of the 2003 "homebuilding course". Current projects. Summary of previous issues. Trailor hook and regulation. 20p
CAAF#22 Jean-Claude Talut, homebuilder. Size of the enveloppe bag. Report of the 2004 "homebuilding course". Trailor building. Trailor regulations. Readers letters. Current projects. Wickerwork : plait closing. 20p
CAAF#23 Hoppermania: Cloudhoppers meeting in Albuquerque. Cloud-hoppers. Jean-Claude Talut, homebuilder. Protect the balloon against animals. Building report from Evelyne and Jean-Luc Bereda (RS3000). Records : Yeti project. Current projects. Next curses. A gas balloon fabric supplier. 20p
CAAF#24 A balloon to set record. Refurbishing a wooden propeller. Anne-Marie Bonzini building report. Story of a small green balloon... The triplets from Alsace, and F-PLOI. Jean-Claude Talut, homebuilder. Building a fan. Lighting a sewing machine. Current projects. 20p
CAAF#25 Rebuilding a class 5 ULM. Utility of a scoop. Calculation of the volume of a balloon. Report of the 5th homebuilding course. Registration marks. Current projects. 20p
CAAF#26 Rebuilding a class 5 ULM (part 2 of 2). Building of a new balloon. Our expensive XPDR. Self-retrieving. Grand-Prix balloons. Hungary, homeland of aerostats. Homebuilding course. Current projects. 20p
ACAF#27 Sewing machine on wheels. The picture of homebuilder. A model web-site. It was in 1963. They homebuilt : a cloud-hopper. Homebuilding course : report. Size of balloons. Balloon in danger. Tests. Current projects. 24p
ACAF#28 Ideal volume for a cloud hopper. A 900 cu.m. ready to built. How to choose a sewing machine. Customization of the sewing machine. Tests. Current projects. 20p
ACAF#29 Convert a sewing machine from tri-phase 380V to single-phase 220V A motorized trailer. 8th homebuilt course. Change a double burner with single liquid line in simple burner with two liquid lines. Strange pictures. A 3000 cu.m. ready to built. Fabric tests. Tests. To fly in foreign countries. 24p in color
ACAF#30 Refitting a seal of a gas balloon valve. Refitting LPG cylinders. Changes in our federation, european development. Fabric tests in real conditions. Dealing with airworthiness of homebuilt balloon. To build a small balloon: V class or restreint C of A ? Things to check before buying a second hand. Tests. Projects. 22p en couleur
ACAF#31 Development of a new hot air balloon fabric. Setting the soupape. A V class ultralight : the Colibri from Airstar. News from the end of the Earth. Changing a classical hot air balloon valve in smartvent system. Tests. Projects. Report of the 9th homebuilding course. 22p en couleur

Speaking about money, the subscription for 4 issues in France costs 30 euros (metropolitan France), and 34 euros for foreign countries and DOM-TOM. The price includes printing and mailing (18 to 24 pages generally, color started with issue 29 !). The back issues are avalaible :

Some special (double) issues may have a different price. Given price always includes mailing charges.

Issue 30 should be printed in october 2008.

A small book "Construisons des mini-montgolfières" or "Let's build small hot air models" (with paper). Only in french.

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This booklet explains how to built a small hot air balloon model in paper, so that you can repeat the experiments of the Montgolfier borthers. The drawings are given, as well as the process to build. A short historic and some informations about the balloon physical principles complete the booklet. A good idea to introduce your children to some physical principles. The model you can build are very small ones (max. 5 cu.m.). 30 pages, black and white, ring binding.

Price : 8 euros free of charge for metropolitan France, or 10 euros free of charge for foreign countries and DOM-TOM.
Edited and printed by Montgolfière France Records.

The manual "Construisons des mini-montgolfières radio-commandées de 30 à 200 m3" or "Let's build RC hot air models from 30 to 200 cu.m.". Only in french.

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This book has been published mid 2003 after numerous demands.

This is a 96 + 22 pages book, printed in black and white, with a ring binding. The price is 18 euros for metropolitan France, free of charge, and 21 euros for foreign countries and DOM-TOM, free of charge.

This manual contains the necessary informations to build a whole RC balloon, illutrated with more than 160 pictures or sketches. The described steps are :

Video "Discover the hot air balloon" / "Découvrir la montgolfière" (for march 2003). Only in french.

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To know everything about hot air ballooning : presentation of a flight, from the setting up to the tidying. Sumptuous pictures of mountain flights or in balloon meet. 45 minutes of pure happiness.

VHS PAL video. 23 euros for metropolitan France (including mailing fees), 26 euros for other countries and DOM-TOM (including mailing fees).

Video "To build his own hot air balloon" / "Construire sa montgolfière" (for march 2003). Only in french.

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The building of a hot air balloon is a fascinating activity. In one hour, you will discover the main lines for such project : choice of the volume, cutting the panels, sewing, basket building, experimental designs, aviation approval... Everything about the subject in 60 minutes !

VHS PAL video. 26 euros for metropolitan France (including mailing fees), 29 euros for other countries and DOM-TOM (including mailing fees).

Copies of back issues of the BBJ (Balloon Builder Journal from Bob Ledoux), in english

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We have the permission from Bob LeDoux to provide copies of old issues of the BBJ. Bob stopped to edit the bulletin in 1998 because of the lack of contribution from his readers. He did not have the time anymore to do it alone, and I understand him very well !

BBJ#01 Gore Pattern Spreadsheet for design of envelopes. List of possible article content. Story about 'in-air' inflating balloon.
BBJ#02 Plan for first time builder using homebuilt envelope over factory basket. Sizing the mouth and deflation ports. Comment on information access and liability. Aeroquip hose problem. Bibliography.
BBJ#03 Paul Brockman's first time building experience. Tip on closing up envelopes. Layout of multi-panel envelopes. Letters to the editor on projects.
BBJ#04 Flying ammonia gas balloons. Layout of vertical gore envelopes. Report on Sherwood valve failure. Comparison of vertical and horizontal gore patterns. Letter on STC process.
BBJ#05 Calculating envelope to basket cable lengths. Is [ammonia] gas for me? Sources mentioned are ParaGear, Westmark Fabrics, Tennessee Attachments. Comment on Australian certification requirements.
BBJ#06 Building envelopes from second grade light weight parachute fabric. Flame testing of silicone coated fabric. Report from Vermont Amateur Built Balloon Meet. Letters on modifying Aerostar burners; fabric suppliers and folders other tidbits.
BBJ#07 The Bames style of construction. Review of the Boland basket. Letters on external tanks; the half sphere and cone envelope, a source of fabric.
BBJ#08 Estimating envelope lift force with a computer spreadsheet/graph. The Basset homebuilt burner. Letters on Peregrine Project; Kennedy balloon project; using lightweight balloons in competition.
BBJ#09 An envelope building table. Tidbits on time frames for FAA aircraft registration, a source for load tape, light and fabric, and sewing machine bobbins. Letters include photos from Vermont meet, stress testing balloons.
BBJ#10 Building the Bassett burner. Basics of ammonia flying. Letters on the Balloon Maintenance and Repair Association (BMRA), shuttle versus needle woven load tape, the Boland take down propane tank.
BBJ#11 Doing the FAA paperwork. Letters on the Bassett burner; Trademark infringement; Ken Kennedy's new balloon.
BBJ#12 The stages and costs of envelope construction. The regulations on Part 103 ultralight balloons. Letters on Bill Arras' test designs, Joe Seawright's project, thoughts on low cost temperature gauges.
BBJ#13 The Arras lightweight basket. The ultralight challenge. Letters on Australian building, buying a decimal tape measure.
BBJ#14 Homebuilt theodolite. Simplified lift force tables. Letters on cable fittings, uncoated parachute fabric, bicycle balloon retrieval.
BBJ#15 Common sewing machine attachments. Homebuilt load tape feeder. Letters on envelope resizing, Bill Arras in Antarctica, Part 103 calculations.
BBJ#16 Design and safety for the builder. Developing the builders checklist. Letters on interpreting the '51 %' rule, a tie-dyed envelope.
BBJ#17 Designing a simple basket. Letters on the 'majority built portion,' balloon projects by Paul Clinton, Peter Asp; Documenting your project.
BBJ#18 Part II: Designing a simple basket. Letters on balloon computer programs, basket airbag, aircraft registrations are down for the year.
BBJ#19 Basic testing for the builder. Letters on blast valve problem, new FAA burner standards, 3-phase motors running on single phase power.
BBJ#20 Arras component testing. Nicopress fittings. Letters on low cost temperature gauge, envelope-basket attachments, buying tape and ribbon.
BBJ#21 A low cost temperature gauge. Thoughts from Albuquerque. Letters on Cathy Luenenborg's new balloon, parachute lines, listing of suppliers.
BBJ#22 Revisit the Gore Pattern Spreadsheet from Issue #I. Letters on, adhesive for silicone coated fabric, sewing machine setup, thread and needles.
BBJ#23 Revisit the Gore Pattern Spreadsheet : Part II. Letters to the Editor and Other Bits. Index for Past Issues of BBJ
BBJ#24 A Good Time in Vermont. Letters to the Editors and Other Bits.
BBJ#25 Building Tweetie Bird. Low Cost Temperature Gauge. Letters to the Editor and Other Bits.
BBJ#26 A Basket of a different Kind. A Balloon Envelope Design Program. Letters to the Editor and Other Bits.
BBJ#27 The Sewing Machine. Third Generation Instruments. Letters to the Editor and Other Bits.
BBJ#28 The Sewing Machine : Part II. Letters to the Editors and Other Bits.

Each issue contains 12 pages. We provide copies for 3,05 euros per issue (or 20,01F per issue). The price decrease for numerous issues : 2,30 euros per issue (or 15,09 francs) for more than 10 issues.

Add sending charge for foreign countries.

Since mid-2005 you can directly order the CD with all the issues, directly to the author, Bob Ledoux.

Copies of CAMATUS, in english

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We are going to ask authorization to provide copies for those who are interested. More information later.

Law texts

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I put here some law texts you can download :

Software, Excel sheets, documentations

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Things you can download now :

Empty forms and samples of filled forms

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Some "picturized" documents sometimes are bigger than screen and can not be completly displayed. If it is the case, save the picture and print it with a picture editor. The things you can download for now are :

Name of document
Sample of empty form
Sample of filled form
request file for a CNRA   fdepex.gif ( 103k)
Technical file   fdtecex_01.gif ( 73k)
fdtecex_02.gif ( 92k)
fdtecex_03.gif ( 130k)
fdtecex_04.gif ( 124k)
Letter from the GSAC saying they have received your file   fardoex.gif ( 87k)
Trial flight program   fprgex.gif ( 116k)
Annex to the file : temporary flight permission, file saying you have done the trials   lannexex.gif ( 128k)
fannexex_01.gif ( 119k)
fannexex_02.gif ( 119k)
Proof of characteristics   fattestex_01.gif ( 102k)
fattestex_02.gif ( 58k)
Temporary "laissez-passer"   lpex_01.gif ( 93k)
lpex_02.gif ( 135k)
LSA (document for electrical instruments, like VHF or XPDR)   lsaex_01.gif ( 105k)
lsaex_02.gif ( 85k)
lsaex_03.gif ( 66k)
lsaex_04.gif ( 62k)
The bill !!   factuex.gif ( 94k)

Technical datum about some products

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Some "picturized" documents sometimes are bigger than screen and can not be completly displayed. In this case, save the picture and print it with a picture editor. The things you can download for now are :

All the documentations are avaible (if there is no contrary information) from the "Montgolfiere France Records" club, at the given price, free of charge. We send the requested documentations in 15 days max., if we do not have any problem (reprinting, vacation ...). You can pay with euros or francs. For the countries other than France, please check if the way you choose to pay does not decrease the amount of money (by generating bank commission). Money must be sent to :

Montgolfière France Records
Arnaud Deramecourt
40 route de Labège
31 450 Baziège

tél : (+.33).(0)
mobile : (+33).(0)

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Arnaud Deramecourt

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Last update 23/06/2010