#21  
Old 03-18-2016, 04:24 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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Future Primitive,
I have been dealing with PDGA Rule 801.2 which deals with the discs we use.
Back in the 1980’s I played with discs that were easily scarred and distorted. Those discs were corrected with a fine point soldering gun and heat and pressure devises so the disc would regain some of its original surface condition, alignment and shape. My encounter with these rules became critical after I studies the rules for my Officials certificate (2015-2017). I realized that the rule concerning disc modification was constructed in such way that I might not continue to openly tell about my healing techniques without concern that someone would challenge me.
After a careful examination of the language of the rules it was possible to see how I could continue with my long held practices and even start another practice where I might reshape new discs to look like my current discs of the same mold. That still left me with the sense that the organization that I rely upon to further the sport that I love has a flawed set of rules. Few people have the patience to listen to my analysis of the language concerning our discs. I have made some recommendation to the PDGA rules committee and have asked them to be ready to rule on any claims made against my discs in the event my public profile on this issue gets controversial.
My activity in this forum is very targeted and well below many who have been incensed by my concerns. Trolling is not something you may fairly identify in your suspicions of this stranger.
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  #22  
Old 03-18-2016, 04:35 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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I recently sent a set of rule changes to the PDGA. They detail what may be done to modify a disc; all things not included in the list of permitted treatments are therefore prohibited. I have reconsidered the "prohibition with a list of exceptions" approach. I will try to draft something that broadly defines the obligations of players concerning disc modifications so that we can set aside the quarrels about in-play or away from play disc treatments and, whether sanding or smoothing is the acceptable response to scrapes and gouges.
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  #23  
Old 03-18-2016, 05:06 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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Discette,
I am trying to respond in order, but that is not happening.
The language of the rule concerning disc have specific terms that describe what is prohibited and then have more narrow controls over what may be considered exceptions to the prohibition. Briefly- Where it says that modifications that alter the original flight characteristics may not be done, the rule expresses the idea that modifications that do not cause such alterations are permitted. That is all very awkwardly considered in that no one can establish with certainty what an original flight characteristics is. As to the language concerning moderate sanding, it is unfortunately in the exceptions section of the rule. That can cause people to believe that all corrective treatments that are not moderate sanding are not legal (even those treatments you and I may believe do not alter original flight characteristics).
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  #24  
Old 03-18-2016, 11:31 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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bradharris,
Bradharris,
My efforts here are to reconcile the current wishes of the PDGA membership with the rules set down in writing concerning post production treatments of discs used in competition. As one member, I have my preferences for what may be done to a disc, but I am ready to yield to the combined wisdom of the membership and the PDGA leadership, even where it is determined that nothing I wish for is permitted. Following my careful reading of the current rules concerning discs, and discovery of the range of opinions regarding those rules, I was less interested in preserving my ability to continue my treatments. I began testing the rules.
Original Flight Characteristics (OFC) was the first test. It was soon clear that there is no useful definition of those terms. My advice is to exclude from any rule terms that are not commonly understood. We can rely on a simple reference to “disc modification” in a broad statement, where people can first hear what is generally prohibited. In an exceptions part of the rule, people can find the various acceptable treatments they can perform. Having OFCs removed from the general prohibition makes it unnecessary to consider OFCs in the exceptions section.
The exceptions would include the current items listed in the rule: moderate sanding of scrapes etc., and modifications resulting from in-play experiences. Added to that list would be the use of hot-tip instruments and heat and pressure devises for the purpose of correcting in-play modifications.
The other test involves one of the technical standards required of manufactures to obtain PDGA approval. The obligation of the manufacturer to produce not less than 500 copies of a mold conveys the will of the PDGA to insure that competitors have a fair opportunity to acquire the same discs. With all the variations found in the weights, colors, plastics mixtures, cooling environments, etc, it occurs to me that the manufactures and the retail distribution systems cannot insure that a player in New York City and a player in San Francisco will both have had equal access to the same disc variation prior to competition in Moline. My wish is to give the players some equalizing capacity where competitors would at least have the expressed right to flatten or dome their disc no more than is recognize as among the flight plate variations in a particular mold. That right would be added to the above list of exceptions.
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Old 03-18-2016, 11:55 PM
John Q. Public John Q. Public is offline
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I too have been curious about 'how far is too far?' with disc mods. If there's a cut or plastic burr on my disc I take a blow torch and very quickly soften the 'frizz', then burnish it quickly. It doesn't look very pleasing but it seems to preserve disc integrity to a higher degree than sanding. To my reasoning, I'm not trying to modify the disc shape so much as preserve the disc's original shape. If someone's taking a hot iron transversely to a disc dome to flatten it, why then IMO that's a bit too far!
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:18 AM
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teemkey teemkey is offline
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OK, serious answer. I suspect the PDGA Rules Committee wants to make modifications illegal that would violate the technical specifications of an approved disc; yet make the modifications easy for a tournament player to identify and report.
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:27 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teemkey View Post
OK, serious answer. I suspect the PDGA Rules Committee wants to make modifications illegal that would violate the technical specifications of an approved disc; yet make the modifications easy for a tournament player to identify and report.
The current rule is not coherent on the issue of modifications that cause a disc to go outside the technical standards. Here's why...It is clear in Sec.B that you can use a disc that is beaten out of alignment as a result of play. See the tech standard that requires that are no discernable gaps found between the rims lower edge and the top of a flat surface. Surely, a beat disc will show gaps.
To make the tech standards Sec.A and the modifications section work together, we can change Sec.A to read, "All disc must be PDGA approved." Then limit modifications to certain treatments with the expectations that those unacceptable departures from the tech standards (thick flight plate, etc) would be discovered as illegal modifications. When we say "...no modifications, except..." we can better define what is not acceptable. Readily apparent violations will be easy in some cases and hard in others.
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Old 03-19-2016, 12:56 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Q. Public View Post
I too have been curious about 'how far is too far?' with disc mods. If there's a cut or plastic burr on my disc I take a blow torch and very quickly soften the 'frizz', then burnish it quickly. It doesn't look very pleasing but it seems to preserve disc integrity to a higher degree than sanding. To my reasoning, I'm not trying to modify the disc shape so much as preserve the disc's original shape. If someone's taking a hot iron transversely to a disc dome to flatten it, why then IMO that's a bit too far!
I have done field repairs with a lighter and a nail. I recommend bench-repairs using a fine tip soldering gun; the outcome is almost as smooth as new. We are together on the issue of "cauterizing" our disc wounds. The current rule permits this modification that does not alter the original flight characteristics; but, I have to torture my friends to show how that is so.
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Old 03-19-2016, 01:18 PM
John Q. Public John Q. Public is offline
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Thanks for the tip about the soldering iron... I'll give it a try!

I am worried about plastic sticking to the tip of the iron (thus losing disc weight)... any recommendations?
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  #30  
Old 03-19-2016, 01:31 PM
FredV FredV is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FredV View Post
I have done field repairs with a lighter and a nail. I recommend bench-repairs using a fine tip soldering gun; the outcome is almost as smooth as new. We are together on the issue of "cauterizing" our disc wounds. The current rule permits this modification that does not alter the original flight characteristics; but, I have to torture my friends to show how that is so.
( reply continued)
As to flight plate modifications- That is a farther reach. It calls us to consider the need for a solution to the problem of wide variations in the contours of discs coming from the same mold, and the lack of uniform availability of those variations in all corners of the market. The most pronounced example of unequal access occurred in one of the posts I've seen. It related that players who are sponsored get first-crack at the discs their sponsor produces.
The more ordinary concern is when a player is in a brick and mortar store and wants two discs of the same mold. There are two. But only one has the contours he prefers. If he only reshapes the other so it resembles the preferred version he has not gained a tactical advantage over another player who is likewise eligible for changing his molds to the same version. This gives the player, as consumer, more control without going beyond the bounds of what is available in the market. Excessive flattening or doming should be obvious but that would fall into the same uncertain enforcement dilemma we face with excessive sanding and artificial warping.
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