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Old Aug 01, 2010, 01:55 PM
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United States, CA, Dublin
Joined Sep 2008
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Ok gentlemen, I finally maidened her yesterday. The delay was because I was looking for a paved runway. I finally joined a club that has one.

Actually, I had cold feet so I asked one of the field experts to maiden her. AUW was 2750 grams. All gyro gains were at 0%, and thrust vectoring was kept off.

First takeoff was aborted because she ran out of runway (around 100 feet). Ran into the grass and that caused the front retract to dislodge. With some 5 minute epoxy, she was ready to go again.

Second takeoff, we started right at the beginning of runway, allowed her to pick up good speed and lifted off like a rocket in around 150 feet. VERY tail heavy, said the pilot! Also very touchy on the controls. We knew immediately that we had to bring her back down, the pilot was struggling to keep her under control (and he's a GOOD pilot). Power was enough, but it was way tail heavy and that made it very hard to control. Easing back on the throttle caused her to nose up dramatically, almost looking like a cobra .

Anyway, he was finally able to get her down. Landing was a little rough, she came down almost vertical on her tail. Thrust vectoring nozzles dislodged and both of the rear retracts snapped right at the wheel. But the rest of it is unscathed.

So, looks like I overcompensated for the CoG. I had it at about 3.5-4 cm (so 1-1.5 cm behind factory setting), and that was definitely too much. On a positive note, the repairs are easy. Looking forward to getting her back in the air next weekend. I'll be extra careful to keep CoG exactly at 3cm.

She was definitely a head turner though
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