First flight session back in Korea
Inspite of grand visions of how I would fly even before my household goods arrived, I was only able to fly for the first time today, full 6 months after coming back to Korea.
Bottomline up front, it was a successful day of flying with one maiden and another "second maiden" :) Afterall, it was the first time she flew in Korea.
Weather forecast was for snow but it was not snowing by 9 AM. So, I packed my box and 3 planes - DG-1000 with retractable motor, Xeno with tuning power pack, and an 800 mm wingspan bind and play e-glider called Kinetic 800 from Hobby King, formerly known as Hobby City in Hong Kong.
I headed out to the only authorized RC airfield in Seoul along the Southern bank of Han River, on the East part of the City. I remember flying in this area prior to my departure from Korea back in 2006. However, a new run way is paved with ample separation from the Olympic Highway (#88), closer to the river. Even with the threat of snow and below freezing temperatures, about a dozen RC pilots were out there with various planes ranging from EPP trainers to hotliners. I witnessed twice the gentleman flying the hotliner land his composite plane on the runway without tipping or flipping. Kudos!
Couple of weekends ago, one of the pilots there this morning had to walk out onto the frozen river to retrieve his ducted fan jet. I had seen this video on a Korean RC website and was glad to see him in person. He says his personal goal is to walk across the frozen Han River. I suggested he fly his plane to the other bank and retrieve it on foot. Another gentleman reported that the river is frozen to 24 cm thickness. That is nearly 9 inches. We were thinking that such thickness could support a grown man but I did not see anyone walk out on the ice today :)
Anyway, Xeno was loaded with the receiver, so she got her maiden flight first. Throwing the Xeno with the folding prop at half throttle got her airborne without touching my launching hand - one fear down. With the old LiPo pack in freezing temperatures, the motor was not packing much of a punch even at full throttle. There was light wind blowing from the East and Xeno was even able to get a little lift with turning into the wind. After many circular patterns in search of thermals, I decided to land. First 2 approaches were way too high and required powered recovery. Third approach was low enough to land but she glided past me by about 50 feet. The port aileron wasn't moving though. Upon inspection, it was missing a nut, most likely lost on contact with the ground. Well, it was still a successful maiden even with a missing nut. Oh, did I mention the pitter patter of my heart and the wobble in my knees? Second fear down!
Next came the second maiden of DG-1000. Fitting the 2 piece wing to the fuselage invited a friendly Piper Cub pilot to lend a hand. Retractable power pod was a new concept to several pilots today. Deploying the pod, moving the throttle slider up, reaching desire height, throttle slider down, retracting the power pod in 2 steps required a bit of practice before I got it all down so that the prop was neatly stowed in the fuselage. But, I got to fly her about 4 times, once catching her by hand. When I tried to show off some aerobatic moves by diving, I noticed she did not respond to directional control. Such are the limitations of an EPP glider. Still she is beautiful in the air. Just can't go too fast with her.
While setting up the Kinetic 800, snow flakes started falling and so the first day of flight in Korea came to a white end. Well, I am most impressed with the Seoul RC airfield. For some safety concern, flying there is authorized only on weekends, so I may have to find an alternate flying site, perhaps outside Seoul during the week. A functioning restroom, a 7-11, walking/biking path, and a parking lot within 100 feet of the flying field make this one where I can take my family too. All in all a happy day of flying, discovering Seoul RC airfield, and meeting new friends. Thank You, thank You, thank You!
I have the Kinetic 800 on the way
How did the Kinetic fly? Any issues with it?
Sorry for not seeing your comment earlier. I did not get to fly the Kinetic that day but on my second outing, I did. She flew great! I hope that you have received yours by now and are enjoying it as much as I am. She's well behaved and powerful enough to go straight up, dive straight down and make high speed passes with and without the motor. Serious bang for the buck! On my third outing at a local field, I crashed into a metal bar and broke the nose off. I was able to fix it ready for flight with some used parts I had on hand, mostly an aluminum spinner and folding props. Great ship to do some fast maneuvers.
Correa, it is good to see something very current about RC flying in Seoul. I will be moving there this month and have planned to bring a couple of my parkflyers. Is there a membership requirement for the flying field? Thanks.
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