Originally Posted by David Hipperson
Well you seem to be very knowledgeable so maybe you can let me know what I'm doing wrong.
Just for background info I'll let you know what my flying conditions are. Winds are usually 8-13mph from the south or southwest. A day with less wind is a rarity especially in the cooler seasons, and so I have resigned myself to flying in the wind. I don't try and fly in winds over 15mph.
My "field" is essentially that. A largeish soybean field in the middle of a circle of houses. The field is longer from north to south, and along the west side there is a row of trees. I usually fly from the middle of the north end of the field or increasingly from the north west corner do to the sun protection from the tree line.
I have 4 choices for landing. The gravel road running east-west along the south end of the field in front of the houses. The narrow strip of grass in front of that (it has a bit of a "ditch" so it's easy to catch a wingtip landing there). A section of tall brush on the south west corner (i've used this as my "oh crap" landing spot before). The only available place to land into the wind is going away from me into the field which in the cooler months is dirt clods. Easy to catch a wing tip there too.
Here is what I've experienced on landing.
I typically will try to land motor off. This is because either I don't want to break my prop or my ESC cuts my motor off. My flying times are very inconsistent depending on if I'm gliding or on power more of the time so it's difficult to set up a timer.
So what I'll do is typically power off at altitude and try and get as far as I safely can downrange toward the east typically attempting a landing going west on the grass or field. If I want to land on the field going south I would have to circle over the houses which I don't like doing.
I will circle around until I am about 20 feet up because at that point I don't want to get too slow and drop a wing that low which sometimes happens on my upwind part of the circle. at about 20 feet I will straighten out and start my landing run coming toward me to the west.
Usually one of two things happens at this point. I will get too slow and she will either nose down into the ground or drop right out of the air, or she won't bleed off speed at all and come in like a bat out of hell usually catching a tip and spinning on the ground, cracking the fuselage under the wing mounting bolts.
I'm sure this all sounds crazy and stupid to you but keep in mind I've never had anyone to teach me the proper way to fly and so I've learned entirely by trial and error (read: crashing).
Also, do you think nylon wing bolts would help by shearing off when I catch a tip instead of ripping the fuselage?