Sunday, 30 March 2014

Early morning test flights with the Dream-Flight Libelle.

I was up early and wandered up our local park with my brand new Dream-Flight Libelle. Hardly a breath of wind and with dew on the grass I gave it a gentle throw forward for its first test glide. Just one click of up trim and she was away on a long straight glide. With a gentle rotation and firm fling she was away on her first proper DLG launch. This beauty can glide. Every time managed to fly her back into my hand and with each launch putting a little more effort in. There was no lift as it was early and still but bring on the thermals as this baby will soar like a buzzard.
video
OK this isn't me flying I admit it! but what a place to be able to fly from. Lovely video.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

The ups and downs of the Ashdown Forest

Funny old day today up on the Forest. After a little walk and some complaining from some of our senior members (Rob & David) we arrived at a open grassy area over looking the valley below and what seemed like a reasonable wind in our face. Both David, Rob and I all went through the fleet of models we had taken with us. One by one crashing of breaking something to a point we didn't have a lot to fly. Jack & Graham U on the other hand showed us all how to do it (again!) with some skilful thermal flying and ridge hugging. I think the wind was a little too strong and the slope a little to small and the thermals a little to frequent. I think we still enjoyed ourselves with Rob, Jack, Graham, David, Tim and me spending a few hours up on the Ashdown Forest.

On the way back Jack tried out a very gentle slope together with a 20knt wind and still managed to get away from a chuck launch (makes you sick!).











Thursday, 27 March 2014

Saturday 29th March - Flying Opportunities

Latest update:
After some deliberation it has been decided to give Ashdown Forest another go tomorrow. I went up to this new flying site (it's new to me anyway) and found this lovely area free from gorse and tree's with a nice size slope with the potential of being a good place to fly from. MAP Car Park 22 (Pylons)

You need to park up in a car park called 'Pylons' which sits just along the road past the Police camp and the large aerial. The car park is the same side of the road as the aerial. Then walk to the right of the car park and follow the path round and then to the right. You should see the aerial we should be flying around the bowl from this.
We aim to get there around 10.30 to give a little time for the thermals to get going. The wind is going to be brisk so maybe not a floaty day but we will have to wait and see. I will take the Ninja, Typhoon and Algbra.
Hope to see some of you up there. Any problems, just give me a call.
Paul: 07834 859018

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Dream Flight Libelle DLG Built & ready to fly!

Here's the first picture of the newly built Dream Flight Libelle DLG. Its not got any of its fluorescent stripes on it yet but it will do soon. It was a tight build and took some thought and a little foam cutting to get the Spektrum AR400 in the tiny cockpit area.
 
All up weight around 280grms or 9.9oz.Tim will hopefully supplying me with a brief run down on the Dream Flight Libelle's superior build quality and also the more challenging aspects of the RC Installation. Rob's glider hopefully wont be far behind (arriving tomorrow) and anyone else who going to Invest in this superb DLG (that's aimed at you, Jack!)

Sunday, 23 March 2014

F3J / F5J Glider Flying Ashurst

Just got back from my first flat field winch event for F3J gliders and the self launching F5J gliders. We were kindly invited along by Bernie and the SRFC (Sussex Radio Flying Club). Its was a windy day, must have been blowing 25knts up above and from the NW. After the briefing winches sere set up and yellow marker tapes set 10 metres from a centre marker. We were lucky enough to have a host of skilled pilots and some from the British team to demonstrate the power, strength and agility of these beautiful goliaths of the sky. There were good thermals around and after a very quick (3 second) winch launch and an impressive 'Ping' of the top the gliders must have got to 300 / 400ft
The landings were just as Impressive. These huge gliders slow down to a walking pace thanks to some huge flaps and great piloting skills and at the last moment piled in to get nearest to the marker.
From our group we had Jack, Graham, Terry, Clint and Kevin Beale who was doing a splendid job flying (see video of him flying below).
I flew my electric Seagull K8b which to be honest struggled against the strong headwind and at times was facing into wind but flying backwards. Graham U did a sterling job flying his electric glider.
I got to meet Chris Foss and Ken Manley who I hadn't met for many years since I left the Gliding Club. Sorry just one more Video clip to show you. Here a glider winds itself up a Bunjee launch but its the landing I was Impressed with.
A big thank you to Bernie and all the guys that made the effort and making it a most enjoyable trip out.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Dream-Flight Libelle DLG glider

Dream-Flight have been working on a new DLG (Discus Launch Glider) called the Libelle. These have just arrived here in the UK and can be bought from Hyperflight for just £99.00. Well, being a sucker for new technology and loving the look of this new DLG glider, I've bought one!.
The Dream-flight Libelle is a breakthrough in discus launched gliders. Few modelling experiences can be as fulfilling as catching a thermal from a model launched by hand, with no other energy source involved. Until now, this experience has been out of reach to non-expert modellers for a variety of reasons. The Libelle is for everyone; it can be assembled, kitted-out, and trimmed for flight by pilots of any experience level.
Apart from being extremely quick and easy to assemble, the Libelle (which means dragon fly in German) is also reputed to fly excellently, making it a fantastic introduction to discus launch gliding. We haven't actually handled one yet, but already American testers are suggesting it would make a great basis for a one-design discus launch glider F3K competition.
Libelle pilots will get out and glide faster, as many time-saving tasks have been expertly finished at the factory. Utilizing the most modern materials and foam molding techniques, DreamFlight have achieved a durable, lightweight, and super smooth airframe. The entire model is made from purpose-designed components, with all the main parts self-aligning and interlocking. Link to 'Build Thread'
I will keep you informed of my progress and would love to encourage more of you to have a go at DLG gliding. From what I have experienced so far its great fun and what a challenge. The servo's are £4.95 each and from BRC Hobbies (Gening D541BB) and an Alula flight battery that cost £5.47 from T9 Hobbysport plus a AR400 Spektrum full range receiver for £25 off eBay. If you get one of these beauties or already have one, please drop us a line and tell us all about the build and your flying experiences.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

eSoaring Invitation - This weekend (Ashurst, West Sussex)

Bernie has kindly invited us along to a eSoaring / open gliding weekend at a flat field site in Ashurst, West Sussex. Please find the details below or visit Bernie's website: http://www.esoaring.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=2660&p=13585#p13585

The SRFC are hosting a Warm up Weekend at Ashurst, West Sussex on Saturday and Sunday 22/3rd March 2014 - Upper Northover Farm, Ashurst, West Sussex, BN44 3AL

Field in use will be Sign posted from the Xroads

Please let Bernie know if you would like to join us at this event by posting to the eSoaring thread, (preferred method), with the following information:

1) Your name
2) Preferred Frequency plus 2 additional frequencies (or 2.4GHz).
3) Main Interest ie. F5J - F3J - eSoaring - F3K - or just model flying
4) If you require the loan of an altimeter switch for the day.

No fee is payable at sign in for the event on the day plus an additional nothing for altimeter hire fee should you not have you own unit. the event is being sponsored by the SRFC for the Field and eSoaring Gadgets for the loan altimeters and the loan of the CD

Proof of insurance cover (BMFA membership card is sufficient) will be required before you fly

Timings for the day. (all timings are ish)

09.00am to 9.30am – Signing on, flight testing and Altimeter checks where required.
09.45am - Pilot Briefing
10.00am - Flying, setting up, information sharing and just plain fun.

if you turn up after the Pilot briefing please make sure you come and see me and I will make sure you are looked after and are given any safety information required.

There may well be a couple mini comps run during the course of the weekend, but nothing to heavy

Location map is at: http://maps.google.co.uk - then go to 50.921798,-0.322187 or Nearest Post Code is BN44 3AL- this takes you to the cross roads of Horsham Road and Spithandle Lane. Immediately opposite Spithandle Lane to the east is the track to Upper Northover Farm. Drive down this track and look out for the signs direction you to the flying field in use on the day.

If you have ANY questions or need any further information please ask.
e-mail: bernie@esoarer.co.uk or Mobile: 07740 181861

Bernie Jones - CD - All Ashurst SRFC/BMFA eSoaring League Events 2013.

Alternative registration methods:-
Email: email bernie@esoarer.co.uk
Bernie Jones on 07740 181861, please a message if I'm not available.

There should be a group of us going along (not sure which days at the moment) but why not come along and fly if you can or just go and watch? It should be a very Interesting opportunity to meet new people and see another side of the sport and for us to try some flat field flying.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Not the easiest of days but well worth the effort!

This morning we ventured out to the Ashdown Forest which started out breezy but as time went on it warmed up and the wind eased a little and finally we were blessed with some good strong thermals. We had an excellent turnout with Rob, Jack, Graham, Tim, Geoffrey, Bill, myself and Clint (a welcome newcomer to the group). Graham was cheating a little with his big floaty glider with the motor up front but he definitely got the duration award. Jack had his vintage Gentle Lady that had its ups and downs but its last flight must have got to a 1000ft, so Jack wins the height award. Rob tried out his 2.7mtr floater that unfortunately didn't last too long but out came the Pretty motor glider that performed well. I flew my trusty old Algebra which on its first flight hooked a lovely thermal but then had a few rubbish launches which ended up it being crunched in between two small holly bushes.
But for me, my highlight was the Dream-Flight Alula Evo. Several flights over 5 mins in what was a very windy day for such a light glider. It did get some good launches and performed well if not a bit twitchy on the elevator. All in all, I enjoyed myself and I hope all the other who came along did so too? The Forest doesn't hand its lift out on a plate (if that makes sense?) There is no massive slope to fall back onto and the landings are somewhat of a lottery with all the gorse and bushes. You have to find the lift, work for it and when it happens you get lifted up high and become a tiny dot (just likes Jack's glider).

Saturday, 15 March 2014

My 4th hand Red Floater

I'm planning to fly this 4th hand Red Floater tomorrow on Ashdown - it has 2.7 mtrs span and rudder/ elevator control - quite a new thing for me - I'm used to all surfaces moving and  / or elevons, so I'll enjoy this floater I hope.



It ued to belong to someone in Littlehampton, then was bought by Tim Hampshire on Ebay, transferred to Phil Reeves who flew it once, then he kindly donated it me.
I'm looking forward to flying it tomorrow on Ashdown Forest. . . . . . .

Rob

Alula Evo Update

Just a quick update on the Dream-Flight Alula Evo. Took it up the park this morning and did some test flights. On a good launch could get it to about 40ft. One flight even managed to hold some height briefly. Should be good when its warms up enough for some thermal flying. It was so much fun! Its well worth the small Investment. Hopefully more news to come about its flying capabilities when I fly it up at Ashdown Forest tomorrow.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Ashdown Forest this Sunday morning

This weekend looks good with both days offering slope soaring opportunities. Unfortunately, I can't make it out tomorrow but plan to fly on Sunday morning. The current wind direction for Sunday am is WNW - W 8 - 16mph with glorious sunshine. Myself, Rob and Jack are planning a visit to the Ashdown Forest with our floaty (big wing) gliders plus my new Alula to see if we can soar the gently slopes up at the Forest. We should get some thermals as the morning goes on and hopefully have a pleasant mornings flying.
We aim to be up at the Smugglers car park located a few hundred yards along from the large aerial (Police compound) located up on the forest) Click here for a map. Its car park 23 detailed on the map. around 10.00am this Sunday. We may have to walk along a bit from the car park to get a position in to wind. Anyway it will be a challenge if anyone fancies coming along to fly or just enjoy the fantastic views. Anyone flying must have Insurance and we need to keep a keen eye out for horses.
Here is a LINK to the Ashdown Forest rules for BMFA members who want to fly RC gliders on the forest.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

The Alulu Evo is born

 
From this..........
To this............
 
 
Only weighs 180grms with everything Installed. With a 4.8V 300mAh NiMH battery + a tiny AR400 Spektrum full range receiver. Cant wait to try it. Thanks Tim!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Can you fly during the week?

I have had a request to create a list of people who are able to go sloping/ flying during the week. The list can then be distributed within the group making it easier to find someone to fly with during the week. If this is of any interest to you,  please forward your contact details to me and I will collate a list.
rob@littlehobland.co.uk

Many thanks  - Rob

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Alula Evo - Just fling and fly!

Something that I have been wanting to try for a long time was a DLG (Discus Launch Glider) but never had the money to afford a decent DLG glider so I have been looking around for a cheap alternative. I liked the look of the Alula Evo but couldn't locate any in the country or abroad but then out of the blue T9Hobbysport had some in stock, so I gave into temptation and ordered one together with the servo's and flight battery. Well, it arrived today in a tiny box and Tim's building skills should have it up and running very soon. Here is a few video's of Alula's in flight. Looks like a lot of fun!
video
video
The alula is not a true DLG but its relatively cheap as an introduction to another side of this fascinating sport. It should be able to fly in light winds up on the slope or from a flat field site and hand launched to sniff out those tiny thermals near to the ground. As you can see from the last video it can also be DS'd (Dynamic Soaring) something else I have never tried before. If anyone else is interested in getting one or even better already have an Alula Evo, please let me know as it would be good to exchange notes.
I will let you know how I get on.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

Beachy Head - Sun, Sea & Slope Soaring

Rob, Jack & I went down to Beachy Head (above Eastbourne) this morning, we got there at 9:30 and it was empty. Firstly we turned up, parked and wandered directly across from the cars (50 yards) and started to soar the hill. At this point the hill was just a hill and not a cliff but good enough to keep us busy for over an hour.I would say higher and steeper than Ditchling, but still able to recover a lost model (eh, Jack ?) Initial light lift gradually increased to make the lift reliable and gave us the opportunity to play some combat and low passes along the path.
There were even benches to sit on and relax in the sun as you flew. Isn't it nice seeing old fella's like Rob getting out and about at his age?
We were joined by a low flying Paraglider who struggled to stay up in the gentle lift.
Then we moved round the corner to a fantastic bowl that over looked a big cliff edge and the sea below. Here the wind was stronger and gave superb lift together with amazing views. Flying over the sea was a 'leap of faith' and did take a little getting used too (none of us had flown without being able to see any land ahead - except France!), but the strong lift and good landing area behind made for an amazing flying site.
This place gets an 8/10 and well worth the 45 min drive from Haywards Heath to Beachy Head. Easy to park (not so sure in the height of summer) with parking right behind the flying area. Lots of landing space and the views - WOW!
There's even a pub and 'facilities' for those of a less hardy disposition. . . . or you could be just like Rob and go and pee in the bushes and give the walkers a shock!
 
Paul and Rob.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Spring has sprung!

I arrived at Ditchling Beacon car park to cloud covering the car park and no visibility forward but with the sun above me - strange. Half an hour later the cloud / fog lifted a little a I wandered along the bowl and stood in the fog till Jack turned up.
Jack had his vintage Gentle Lady glider and I had my old but trusty Algebra thermal / slope floater.
The video below shows Jack's model struggling to get into the very strong 4mph NNW wind that topped out at about 6mph but with some thermal influence as the morning went on. Perfect visibility (not).
The visibility got progressively better as the morning went on but the wind decreased to nearly nothing but with the aid of some small thermals and the general airflow moving up over the hill we managed about 1 1/2 hours soaring. If any of you are thinking about buying a floater glider or have one ready to be built then today should encourage you to get it built and flying I must build some more of my Elan!!) These floaty gliders don't need to be expensive and I think both our gliders cost less than £50 each. 
A great start to spring lets hope we get to see some more of you up on the hill side soon. I will leave you with a video of Jack demonstrating how little sky you actually need to fly in when the visibility starts to go by using just the very top part of the slope and just a few feet of the ground.


Turned out right nice!