Month: June 2015

Still No Flying

Can you believe it, I’m still not well enough to go flying after last weekend? I almost got better, then went straight down hill again.

Never mind though, maybe it was for the best. It was really windy this morning, despite being warm and sunny, then there were some sudden heavy showers of rain around mid to late morning. It probably wouldn’t have been a very good flying session today.

 

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Too Sneezy to Fly

It seems I have a cold and not hay fever, so there’s no flying this week. I’m not sure whether I would have gone anyway as the weather was looking very overcast early on with a strong wind. Then later on it seemed to clear up and came over all sunny like nothing had happened. It’s the Summer Solstice, so it’s not supposed to be that changeable. Officially we’re now into Summer, so we should be looking forward to some settled, calm, flying weather.

It Was a Dark and Stormy Morning

I give up with the weather. It’s been dark and overcast all morning with a light misty rain in the air. Then the heavier stuff showed up around 11am right when it was forecast.

None of this means I got to do any flying though. I am making progress with the autogyro, but the blades are taking a long time, mainly waiting for the epoxy to set. I’m just about ready to drill the holes, balance and cover the blades. The ply stand-off for the motor is glued in place, so I can start think about motor mounting. It’s all nearly there, but there are a huge number of little things to get right before it all goes together.

 

It’s Sunny Again

The Sun’s come back and it’s actually very warm this morning, if a little bit windy. This led to quite a busy morning as there were already a couple of people at the flying field when I got there and someone else just arriving with an FPV quadcopter. I don’t think I’ve seen him before, but it looked like he had one of the larger racing quads which he proceeded to fly around the outskirts of the field.

As I was walking across from the road, one of the guys I haven’t seen for a few weeks was flying his HobbyZone Cessna, but standing a long way from the normal spot. When I realised it was him and not a beginner, I asked why. Apparently, there was a couple getting to know each other very well on the bench and he felt like he was intruding! Anyway, he spent some of the morning helping a dad and his son, who were beginners, learn to fly their Cessna. There are far too many of these generic foam high wing trainers to keep track of now, so I can’t tell which variant it was that they were flying, only that it was on 35MHz.

Anyway, the other guy back at the main flying area was also a beginner and didn’t seem to have had much luck with flying his two planes before. I actually wonder whether the prevalence of ready to fly foam aircraft actually has the effect of turning people away from the hobby as he was completely clueless about everything and would probably have given it up on his own. In the old days you spent a lot of time learning from other people. For example, he had a HobbyZone FireBird clone (looks like a FireBird Commander, but isn’t), which he had crashed a few times. A quick look at the control movements told you why, so we reprogrammed the rates on his Taranis radio to about 50% of what they were. Then he flew it beautifully, even rolling it, and was amazed at the difference. Then on to his other aircraft which is another generic HobbyZone high wing trainer. Same problem with the rates, plus the tail moving rather alarmingly when he moved the elevator. It is only held on from below by two metal bolts through the fin, so he glued it more securely. Then I launched it for him and it flew fine until the Taranis started telling him that the Tx battery was low – he hadn’t charged it. It also transpired that he didn’t know what the trim switches were for, but when the battery alarm started to sound he gave me the transmitter and let me land it. I was actually surprised by how fast it was flying and how the adverse drag on the ailerons was leading me to add rudder when I wanted to turn. Probably wants some differential next time it flies. Anyway, it got down without incident, even if I did abort the first attempt as I was too high and fast.

After that somebody else arrived with a small foam Mustang which I launched for him a couple of times. The last flight ended in a broken nose section, but it’s easily repairable.

In between giving advice on flying I did manage to get in three flights with the RS352:

An aeroplane and some deer

An aeroplane and some deer

After that my transmitter was showing 9.5v, which means it’s time to use the new battery I got from RobotBirds.