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Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 17, 2010 @ 02:19 AM | 12,889 Views
Hey guys/gals. I kinda been gone for a bit. I got sent out to one of the outlying FOBs (Forward Operating Base) to do Medevac Chase. We provide security, escort and casualty evac for our Med guys. Only flew 16.5 hours in a week, but if the Med dosnt fly much, thats a GOOD thing!

Had a good time out there, helped a lot of people, met some great guys from the Louisiana National Guard and still got to fly some.

We also had a NATO reporter/camera guy with us for the week named Josh. Awesome fella and man he does nice work!

Here is a picture of our crew we had out there for the week.

Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 03, 2010 @ 07:40 AM | 14,051 Views
I have been on night QRF (quick reaction force) for the last 5 days or so. Well, we all know if you give me time to sit around I'll build something! So, I decided I needed an IFO type plane.

I borrowed some carbon rod, secured it all with parachute cord and CA. I covered it with a chunk of a 100' parachute that I "liberated". For control surfaces, I had to come up with something since I had no more carbon rod left. I saw some choroplast "no smoking" signs that looked like they were tired of just hangin around. A few minutes later, I had rudder and elevons also covered in parachute.

For power, it has a Hacker A20, 10x4.7 prop and a 3S 1320 lipo, 3 BMS metal gear servos will 550 cord pull pull on all surfaces.

Initially I had the frame covered all the way to the nose. I went for a few test flights and the dang thing would NOT turn!!! I tried to move the CG all around, still nothing. I decided maybe I should check the IFO thread here on RCG and I saw one common denominator with all of the IFO's, they had an open space in the front (usually where the motor was). So, I put some braces in and cut out the front. Flies like a champ now! Although still just a tad nose heavy. It sure would make my life easy if I would use proven designs or look at plans before I build something. But, that takes most of the fun out of it for me. I like to try, try, try before I go looking for help.

Its about 34" in span and pretty close to the same in length. The broken prop in the pictures will give you a hint that its a little too big, fast and heavy to fly inside one of our hangars! But, when you build something out of "whats available" you have to make weight concessions. It aint light, but it does fly!

I have some more carbon rod on order now thanks to Lee Ulinger at Should be here in a week or two. Maybe I'll get some time to try some other new (to me) projects.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 25, 2010 @ 10:14 AM | 14,229 Views
Here is a quick video of the Lee Ulinger Edge 540 over here in Kandahar.

EDGE (4 min 51 sec)

And here is one of the Vapor flying indoors over here in a gym.

Vapor (3 min 38 sec)
...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 18, 2010 @ 02:55 PM | 14,786 Views
Just curious as to how many people REALLY look at my blog on here? The little counter thing says some huge number all the time, but how many people acctually take the time to look at the stuff I write on here? If you regularly come here an see what Im up to, please post something and let me know! If you just recently stumbled over my insanity, put something up and let me know!

In other news...

My wonderful wife Kristy, Kmopar69 here on RCG, has also quit smoking! She is doing great and hasn't killed anyone (yet). Im very proud of her and Im sure she will keep it up and do great! Love ya honey!

And then there is this...

I recently posted a "Wanted" add here on RCG looking for a used micro cub or similar plane (this one). About a day later, I get a PM from a fella named "andersot" offering to send me a Vapor for free! I told him I would be happy to pay for it, but he insisted. So, we not have a Vapor on the way over here for some indoor flying. Thank you Andersot!

Then "justplainold" sent me a PM offering up a couple of the "brick" batteries. Man, I tell ya, I just cant get over the kindness and generosity of all of you guys here on RCG! Thanks Justplainold!

Just shortly after that, I got a PM from another fella named Garret H. Garret H saw my thread, and offered to send me money to help buy a indoor plane. Of course I told him thank you, but I couldnt let him do that. So, instead, ol' Garret H "one upped...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 12, 2010 @ 02:38 PM | 13,575 Views
So, after about 20 years, I finally decided to be a quitter at something. Smoking. Its one of those nasty habits I picked up a long time ago that has been slowly killing me, making me broke, and making me smell bad.

Time to quit! I have gone 6 days now without smoking. Its tough, but, its easy compared to some of the things in life I have done.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 06, 2010 @ 02:30 PM | 14,025 Views
I have been walking by this broke down goofy lookin truck for a few weeks now wondering what the deal is with it. So, I finally had time to ask around. I found the "owner", a company commander, and asked what he was doing with it. He said it didnt work. Of course, my next question... what do I need to do to get it from you? He said "sign here" on this temporary hand receipt! So, sign I did.

To make a long story shorter, after some TLC, some minor repair, and lots of scrounging, I now have an all electric GEM truck. This is the "eL" model. The best part is, GEM is owned by Chrysler... those of you who know me know Im a Mopar nut! I cant lose!

I been driving it around for 2 days now. Even with some dying batteries, I can get about 17 miles on a charge. Im workin a deal now to get 6 new batteries for it... yeah, 72volts is what this thing runs on! $200 a pop for batteries too! So, within a few weeks, I should have some new ones!

As per the deal made with the Captain I got it from, its mine as long as I want it. No argument there! 25mph in a silent "car/truck/thing" sure beats walkin!

So, it just goes to show, that for every bad thing that happens, usually something good is right around the corner.

(It might just need some Castle Creations decals!)


Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 02, 2010 @ 10:35 AM | 14,032 Views
Well guys, here's an interresting story for you from Kandahar.

I was scheduled to fly a couple days ago for an 8 hour mission with a Captain as my copilot. The young Captain did fine first off. Anyway, on to the story.

We finished our mission in about 6.8 hours, and about 11 of "duty day". Now we have rules about this stuff... we are only allowed 12 hours of duty day doing aviation related duties, anything more than that, we have to formally request an extension. We can get 2 hours from our commander, and then it just goes up the chain from there if we need more time to finish whatever we are doing.

Same thing applies to flight time. We are allowed 8 hours of day time, 7 hours mixed day/night/night vision goggles and 6 hours of only NVG flight in a day. Anything more, we have to ask for an extension.

So, back to my story. We finished our mission in about 6.8 hours. I decided to do a recon of this area where the "hodgies" keep shooting rockets at us from. So, I called our "Battle Captain" on the radio to check in and let them know what we were doing. When I did, I immediatly got a call back from one of our unit IP's (Instructor Pilot). He was on Medevac chase and they were being called out on a "CAT A". CAT. A is life, limb or eyesight injury... IMPORTANT STUFF!!! Anyway, his aircraft broke on runup, so he could not go. He asked if my crew could support the Med on this mission. We said of course we could, we...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 27, 2010 @ 12:04 PM | 13,290 Views
I been running my Losi Strike over here on occasion. Initially it was fun, but a little slow. So, I put a Castle Creations Mamba 4600 motor and Sidewinder ESC in. Better, but still not quite enough for me. So, after a conversation with good old Joe Ford at Castle, I stuck in a Mamba 5700 and a Mamba Max ESC with a 2 cell 5000 lipo. WOW! Did that ever wake it up!!! Now there aint nothin here in Kandahar that can touch it. In fact, its almost too much! I can barely control it.

I had to set the timing at the lowest level, put in the smallest pinion I have (19t... 17t is on the way) and a 90t spur gear. Still way more power than it needs!

Anyway, the body was lookin pretty rough, so I ordered a new one, and slapped a quick paint job on it today. Good enough for Kandahar!

Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 25, 2010 @ 01:52 PM | 13,580 Views
Hey all, figured I'd tell ya a quick story about my latest "adventure" here in Kandahar.

I finally got my UH-60 Blackhawk pilot in command check ride done a few days ago. Should have been last September, but thats another story for another time.

We go out to fly this General all over the place two days ago. We get in the helicopter, start up, do all our engine checks and just as we are about to taxi my right side crew chief says "sir, the cabin is filling with smoke!" Well, needless to say, that got my attention really really quick! I looked back and sure enough the cabin was full of white smoke... Electrical? Fire? Oil? Who knows! I asked, and they couldnt tell.

So, I did an emergency engine shutdown on both engines, called my sister ship and told them what was up and sent the guys to check it out. They couldn't find anything!

I called my maint. test pilot with a cell phone, told him what was up. His advice... "Check it out real good and if you are comfortable starting it back up and trying it again, go for it". Since the crew was comfortable, we did just that.

I fired both engines back up, no smoke. I had my co pilot pull in some power, no smoke. The crew jumped in the back, closed the doors and waited... no smoke! So, we called and said we were ready to taxi. We made it about 100 yards down the taxi way and the crew chief again yelled, sir, smoke in the cabin! This time, I stopped, they jumped out and went back...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 23, 2010 @ 02:28 PM | 13,207 Views

We had a UH60 crash recently that took one of our NCO's and some Australian soldiers lives. The rest of the crew was injured pretty bad also, but it looks like they will pull through.

I remember talking with SGT Silk a lot last year in Bagram. We used to talk smack to eachother quite a bit. Really a great soldier and had a great sense of humor. He'll be missed.

Please keep the family of SGT Silk and the rest of the crew and soldiers in your prayers. They will need it.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 19, 2010 @ 01:57 PM | 12,890 Views
First off, Castle Creations is awesome! Im just sayin...

I had a 9.3 hour flight in and around Kandahar, Afghanistan today with my Brigade Standardization Pilot (CW5 type) while doing my pilot in command evaluation. We moved a butt ton of soldiers out to remote locations with a Dutch crew in a CH-47. Great guys too!!! Had a really good flight. So, here you go... the first UH-60L thats "Powered by Castle". Wouldnt that be nice.

The good news is, the Eval is going well, no one shot at us today, and I logged over 9 hours.

The bad news is, tomorrow is the oral evaluation.... uuuuuggggghhhhhh. I hate that part. Could be 2 hours, could be 10 hours... ya never know.

Then comes the night vision goggle flight. Once all of that is done, if all goes as planned, I will pass and be a PC. If all does not go as planned, well, I'll sit in my room and continue to study... I hate studying.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 05, 2010 @ 12:40 PM | 14,070 Views
Not sure what I was thinking, but I just paid $10 to run a half marathon over here in Kandahar tomorrow morning. So, if I dont make it... you guys take care of all my planes for me!

Anyone care to make a guess at what my time will be for the 13.1 mile race? I'll post the results later on.

Off to bed, 0530 comes around pretty quick.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jun 03, 2010 @ 02:23 PM | 14,595 Views
Even though Im in Afghanistan, I just cant seem to stop looking at and buying planes!!! Well, I stumbled accross and started looking at their 30cc size MX-2 and S-BACH 342 and just HAD to have one! The prices are not bad at all either! Win win in my opinion!

So, a couple emails and a phone call to the company owner (GREAT guy by the way) and I now have a CUSTOM COVERED 73" span S-BACH 342 on the way to my house in Tennessee. Yeps, mine will be one of a kind. And of course, mine will be ELECTRIC powered. No gassers or nitro in my stable anymore. As for the covering scheme on mine... well, you'll just have to wait and see! But, it will be pretty slick.

Im pretty darn excited about this one. I love big planes, and especially big electric planes. It should fit right in with some of my others.

Here is a link to some pictures and video...


Posted by lmopar69 | May 28, 2010 @ 04:02 PM | 13,737 Views
Even the people from the NY Times were disgusted by our wonderful Poo Pond smack in the middle of our little "paradise" we call Kandahar Air Field. Nice little write up, and acctually accurate and TRUE!

Posted by lmopar69 | May 22, 2010 @ 08:49 AM | 13,671 Views
Hey guys, things are good here. Nothing much new to report currently. I have been working nights primarily for the last few weeks so not too much in the way of new pictures. They all seem to look the same at night... very black.

Figured I'd drop some random stuff in here for your viewing pleasure! 9.5 months to go.

Posted by lmopar69 | May 07, 2010 @ 01:53 AM | 14,629 Views
Here is what I got done last night on med chase when we were not flying. In fact, 24 hour shift, and didnt get launched once. Thats a good thing.

The build CD for this thing is great! I followed along with Lee as he built one. Only one problem, his plane was red, mine is blue, so when he said to install the fuse sides with the red side up, I did. I didnt catch it before I put glue on, so I guess mine will look just a bit "off".

Other than that one error, it went together smoothly and without a hitch. Gonna be a good lookin plane, and from what I can tell, should be a hoot to fly!

I'll get the electronics installed as soon as I can and get the controls hooked up on it.

My DX-7 is now on its way here, along with one RX thanks to my wonderful wife. So it wont be much longer and I'll get this little sucker in the air.

Again, a HUGE thank you to all of these folks for making this possible for us!!! Keep these folks in mind when you place your next orders guys! I know I will! (Kennewick, Washington)

and good old Dan "Deckert" from here at RCG.

Posted by lmopar69 | May 05, 2010 @ 02:28 PM | 15,607 Views
Many of you know Im deployed... again.... this time to Kandahar, Afghanistan.
Iam certain "RC Guys/Gals" must be the best folks in the world. Here is why...

My good buddy Dan, (I wont say his RCG user name but it resembles Deckert ) went to the trouble of contacting various companies for donations to send some planes over here to Kandahar to us. He talked to them, coordinated everything, got it all shipped to him, then boxed it up and shipped everything to me here in Afghanistan. All without me knowing about it! Impressive! So, a HUGE THANK YOU to Dan for all the hard work.

Here is the deal, in the mail yesterday...

5 CUSTOM MADE 39" Edge 540s from Lee Ulinger. These have our Unit logo "Warlords" on them, plus a picture of our aircraft, the UH-60 Blackhawk, the Fisher House logo, the Bagram RC Club logo and all the sponsor logos. These birds are beautiful! I mean, REALLY cool!!!!

5 Hyperion EOS 1210i battery chargers

10 Venom 3S 1320 lipos

5 Castle Creations Thunderbird 36 ESC's

5 Hacker A 20-22L outrunners (with extra shafts/prop adapters etc..)

5 Hacker X 20 ESC's

10 APC 10x4.7 props

5 Venom lipo sacks

21 Emax ES08MA High torque mini metal gear servos

A bunch of:
Foam Safe CA
cups, stir sticks etc...
shrink tube
hinge tape

All the charger leads are done already too. All we need to do is assemble it all!!!!

So, if ya all wanna do me a favor, shoot the sponsors an email and tell them thank you for...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Apr 24, 2010 @ 07:21 AM | 16,428 Views
For the last few days (and for the next week +) I am assigned to night Med Chase. What does that mean? That means my buddy Justin and I, along with two crew chiefs are working from 1830 to 0630 every night. Our job? Provide security and cas-evac for the Medevac bird.

In plain english, that means if there is a soldier, or local national that is wounded, the Med gets launched and we follow them. If they are landing "outside the wire" to pick up an individual, our job is to provide airborne security to them while on the ground and in flight. Our secondary mission is to assist in picking up any wounded individuals that will not fit in the Med bird or are not injured so severely as to need immediate medical attention. We then transport the soldier/civilian to the hospital as fast as we possibly can.

Its a tough mission to be on. When we fly it means someone has been injured or killed. Every time we start the helicopter its very bitter sweet, because as Army Aviators, we WANT to fly, day and night, as much as we can! But flying because someone has been wounded sucks. It can be gratifying to know that at times we are responsible for getting the wounded soldiers to medical attention VERY quickly and many times saving their lives. Other times, you wish you had never taken off.

Last night, shortly after dark, we decided that you all would like to see what WE see when we are flying with our Night Vision Goggles. So we snapped a couple pics out by our bird to give you all an idea what its like to fly with goggles strapped to your head. I'd love to get you some in flight pictures, but, we tend to get a little busy when we are in the air. Maybe later we'll have the time to snap a couple in-route NVG pictures.

These pictures are VERY bright due to the amount of light that is present on the air field. It gets quite a bit darker once we are away from all the airfield lights.

Posted by lmopar69 | Apr 22, 2010 @ 08:52 AM | 15,266 Views
Finally got to go out to the race track here in Kandahar last Sunday. I qualified 2nd, then won the first heat (7 trucks) then they reversed the field, so I started last. I got 3rd in that heat. Then, I started first for the 10 lap final. Ended up winning that too. Not bad considering Im runnin my 2WD Strike and I was racin against 2 and 4wd trucks.

Then we set up the big ramp and started doin silly stuff. Got a few decent pictures of our trucks tumbling through the air. As you can see, we had a guy there to catch them. No sense breakin stuff when it takes a week to 10 days to get parts!

I did end up twisting off a dog bone on my Strike though. So, I ordered a set of CVD's for it, along with a few "just in case" parts. That should solve that problem.