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Old Jun 27, 2013, 04:20 PM
I like real wooden aeroplanes!
Sundancer's Avatar
South-west France
Joined Sep 2007
4,544 Posts
Whoops!
That's used my luck up for the next month!

Lovely evening for flying today, but it was still a bit breezy at 7 o'clock, so I took out a couple of the heavier models, the Halfax Spartan and the double size Frog Mamba for a flight whilst waiting for it to drop for the lightweights. The "home" field I use, next to the garden, is really a bit tight for bigger models, especially fast ones like the Mamba, with lots of trees and hazards like a road, telephone wires etc. close by. After a long flight with the Spartan, I enjoyed a blast around and some aerobatics with the Mamba, which was running on 3S and going like a ferret up a drainpipe.

Unfortunately I was enjoying myself so much that I overstayed my battery allowance and finished up powerless in a rather awkward position, which, thanks to a spectacularly inept piece of flying, resulted in the Mamba flying head on into a 60 foot oak tree, two thirds of the way up. Amazingly it didn't stick, but with a series of crashes fell down through the tree and eventually out of it. Now this tree was on the opposite side of the road, positioned on the corner of a field next to one of our neighbour's gardens. When I got there I discovered that the model had dropped neatly nose down into the 3 foot gap between the neighbours wire fence and the field barbed wire fence without touching either barrier, which area was blessed by four foot high grass to cushion the fall. Amazingly there wasn't a scratch on the model from it's passage through the tree or it's fall to earth.

So, instead of standing there wondering how to get it down, or collecting the bits, I was simply able to walk into the gap between the fences, pick it up and return it to the workshop. I think perhaps it didn't stick in the tree due to the shape of the model - swept wing - and the fact it doesn't have an undercarriage.

Anyway, the wind had by now dropped, so no longer feeling the "need for speed" I enjoyed the rest of the evening with the 6 ounce Rubberdub and Witch and the even lighter 1.8x KK Sportster, models which are in truth much more suited to this particular field.

But boy, was I lucky to get away with that one!
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Old Jun 27, 2013, 05:16 PM
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Teals1's Avatar
New Zealand, Auckland, Papakura
Joined Nov 2006
362 Posts
A happy ending story there Sundancer. Sometimes things do go in our favour. As a kid I exchanged an engine with a bent crankshaft for a 3 foot Cessna Birddog free flight model from a sympathetic adult modeller. Flew it in the local park, a lovely flight, but ended 40 foot up in a pine tree. Unfortunately mine didn't fall out and, after dislodging it with a carefully aimed 'missile', it came down with one wing flailing wildly in the breeze. The result wasn't pretty and I went home a sad little boy! Think many of us have stories like this but good to hear of you good fortune.
Allen
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 02:23 AM
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Warren B's Avatar
Mt Evelyn, Melbourne, OZ
Joined Dec 2008
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I had one with my MP Jet 061 BB powered 1974 Pacer (almost qualifies for vintage?).

Aileron servo failed on a right bank.
This left me with just elevator (no throttle).
Flew a minute or so (seemed like hours) in circles of varying diamater gradually drifting toward the swamp at the end of our club field.

Engine finally quit and it flopped into the 8 foot tall bullrushes.
Thought it would be lost forever (I lost a 60 powered aerobat same way maybe 15 years ago, never to be seen again).
As I walked along the only track through the swamp, there is was, sitting upright with not a scratch, not even a broken prop.

Pacer is still a favourite, but now has better servos and a throttle.
(the MP Jet is a little screamer)
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 04:09 AM
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Southampton, UK
Joined May 2007
792 Posts
sounds more like " the devil looks after his own " in your case

Cost me 25 for a treeman to get my model from the top of the tree at clubs field. did more damage getting it down but at least I got my saito 70 back.

envious of your field and evening flying weather

john
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 06:29 AM
Sticks, Tissue & old Diesels
brokenenglish's Avatar
France, Centre, Amboise
Joined Nov 2011
1,519 Posts
I guess we've all had incredible good luck occasionally. I know I have.
Three days ago, I revived my Majestic Major for its first flight for 20 years.
My memory played tricks on me. I thought it needed down elevator... oh dear.
So I released it very under-elevated. The flight was thus fast and overpowered, even with full "up" trim.
Unfortunately, I didn't notice that, in transit, a slack rudder pull-pull wire had looped itself around the servo arm (when assembling the plane, I thought the wires were a bit tight!!!). (Sounds like Gerard Hoffnung's "Bricklayer"!).
Anyway, the first take off was with far too much down elevator and left rudder!!!
The good bit is that I managed to recover the situation and we ended up having a reasonable flight (OK, a bit fast!). One year ago, I would certainly have crashed the model. I've just corrected all the problems and I shall be having another go next week - the weather forecast is good...
My wife captured the moment for eternity, on her telephone, so perhaps you'd like a chuckle at this take-off...

MM take off (1 min 3 sec)
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 07:25 AM
I like real wooden aeroplanes!
Sundancer's Avatar
South-west France
Joined Sep 2007
4,544 Posts
Strewth Brian, that looked pretty hairy! I thought vintage model flying was supposed to be relaxing! Pass the bicycle clips.
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Old Jun 28, 2013, 08:39 AM
Sticks, Tissue & old Diesels
brokenenglish's Avatar
France, Centre, Amboise
Joined Nov 2011
1,519 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sundancer View Post
Strewth Brian, that looked pretty hairy! I thought vintage model flying was supposed to be relaxing! Pass the bicycle clips.
Yes George, exactly... However, I hope/think the problems are sorted. Next week should be far more relaxing.
Paradoxically, I feel quite pleased that I actually recovered the situation and "got away with it". It's given me confidence for the future, and is something else that "I mustn't do again"...
The funny part (I forgot) is that my wife, who's only been aware of toy planes for the last 10 years or so, thought I did it on purpose and that it was an impressive demonstration of low altitude aerobatics!!!
Over on the FF thread, "jiffy" (Chris Giles) has posted some super video of the 2013 Bowden Trophy. A gentleman performed the most superb takeoff with a "Bowden Contest". I'd be pleased if I could do as well with RC!
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Old Jun 30, 2013, 03:24 AM
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Stockport, UK
Joined Sep 2001
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John38 View Post
sounds more like " the devil looks after his own " in your case

Cost me 25 for a treeman to get my model from the top of the tree at clubs field. did more damage getting it down but at least I got my saito 70 back.

envious of your field and evening flying weather

john
That was cheap, just cost 45 to retrieve my foamy e Soarer after 5 days up a tree! Mind you with a Multiplex 7 channel telemetry receiver on board it was worth it..... Hardly a mark on the model either, lets here it for epp.

Cheers
Ian
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Old Jun 30, 2013, 07:42 PM
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United States, NJ, Browns Mills
Joined May 2005
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About 1970, I was a beginner, flying with a few folks on a hilltop field in the north of New Jersey. The field, a hayfield, was bordered on all sides by treelines, with more hayfields beyond those.

One beginner was flying an Esquire type taildragger that he had to hand-launch to get into the air (field was too rough to ROG). He got into trouble over a nearby field and we all saw the plane diving in a hard spiral behind the treeline. This was before buddy boxes, so precious moments passed as the instructor grabbed the transmitter, then pulled up on the controls. The engine sound never stopped, so we knew the plane hadn't crashed, but we were all surprised when it appeared in a steep climb, beyond the trees. The instructor immediately brought the plane back and landed it.

As it was landing, we could all see hay hanging from the tailwheel. We thought the plane had flown into tall hay and snagged some as it pulled out. Curious, I took a walk over and looked at the field beyond.

It had just been mown; hay was laying all over the field...there were no stalks sticking up to be grabbed! Evidently, the model had pulled out just as it hit the ground and picked up stalks that were laying on the ground. Another fraction of a second and it would've crashed. My guess is that being as stable as it was, the brief period when the transmitter passed between hands gave it enough time to level out, then the back stick brought it up.

CD
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Old Jul 01, 2013, 07:23 AM
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Monza Red's Avatar
Shrewsbury, Shropshire.
Joined Mar 2008
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I think you have to be a former British and Irish Champion to have that kind of luck!
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Old Jul 02, 2013, 03:49 PM
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Joined Oct 2012
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The best half-loop and roll off the top I ever did was down to radio interference - our club had a 'Bermuda Triangle' poor reception area in one corner of the field, which I carelessly let the model stray into.

I never did admit to anyone that it wasn't me flying that near-perfect manouevre.

Regards
Harry
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Old Jul 03, 2013, 06:29 AM
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United Kingdom, England, Richmond
Joined Apr 2011
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Many years ago in the early days of proportional a club friend took off flying an Uproar equipped with RCS Tetraplex R/C gear. Shortly after take off he lost all control and the model started looping, rolling and gyrating all over the sky - we all just stood waiting for the inevitable crash. Then suddenly he seemed to regain control and quickly aimed for the strip, throttled back and pulled off a perfect landing. We went over to congratulate him on a superb bit of flying when he admitted that at no stage did he have any control and that included heading for the strip, throttling back and landing!
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Old Jul 03, 2013, 08:06 AM
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Stockport, UK
Joined Sep 2001
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ukengineman View Post
Many years ago in the early days of proportional a club friend took off flying an Uproar equipped with RCS Tetraplex R/C gear. Shortly after take off he lost all control and the model started looping, rolling and gyrating all over the sky - we all just stood waiting for the inevitable crash. Then suddenly he seemed to regain control and quickly aimed for the strip, throttled back and pulled off a perfect landing. We went over to congratulate him on a superb bit of flying when he admitted that at no stage did he have any control and that included heading for the strip, throttling back and landing!
Don't you just hate it when that happens!

Cheers
Ian
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