Been flying since '82. Never really took a hiatus, just cut back a lot because of raising kids. Unfortunately for me, living in Montana does not expose me to anyone in our area that is really very knowledgeable in the Higher end slope ships. I really do desire to move into the realm of carbon fiber and molded planes, I'm not an expert pilot but do consider myself proficient. As far as I know, my two brothers and I are the only 3 guys that fly sailplanes in the valley we live in. Pretty unbelievable considering the population here with all small towns and rural sprawl is close to 100,000+, I've asked the local hobby shop guys if there are any other guys coming in that ask about slope flying or anyone else that flies sailplanes and they say no
. Another unfortunate factor is, there are some guys that live about 80 miles from us that fly slope and high end electric. One of those guys is very knowledgeable, but seems to be an elitist, I feel like I'm being talked down to when visiting with him the few times he's come to fly at our slope. As if he doesn't have the time to deal with someone that doesn't have the $$$ to buy the needed materials or components he would suggest. So for now I'll keep flying my balsa planes and
be checking into some used higher performance ships and move on. By the way, I still have my Gentle Lady I built back in '82, flies as well as the day I built it, I take it with me every time I go flying, for those light wind days. Even installed some LED lights for when the wind keeps up after sundown.
Good luck with your venture, I hope your competition seeking goes well and you enjoy this new direction the hobby has taken you. my regards Tracy. FF