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Old Oct 08, 2012, 12:35 PM
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Joined Nov 2010
65 Posts
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First DLG experience

So I've been flying a variety of RC planes for a bit now, mostly of the glider variety, and a few months ago I got interested in DLG. It just struck me as a very clever way to throw a plane a lot higher. So I got myself a Topsky Mini kit (R/E version), and built it up. This took longer than I thought, and was more challenging than I thought (those damn fuselage pods are pretty cramped quarters), but I got it done. Somehow I had to add like 8 pennies of nose weight, an amount that I'm sure would make most DLG connoisseurs cringe, but it is what it is. I think this partially comes from my preference to have my planes be very packable, and I made the stab detachable (attaches with two nylon screws), and I covered the tail feathers with not-so-light monokote.

So I did some test tosses, regular hand-launch style, and the plane behaved as I expected; a nice reliable R/E plane with a hefty amount of dihedral. Then I sort of shelved the plane for a while...I think I was sort of in fear of actually trying a discus-style toss, with visions of my plane veering hard into terra firma and exploding in a shower of foam, glass, and carbon. The physicist in me kept saying "don't worry, the tail feathers will straighten its flight out almost right away," but the human in me kept saying "are you really going to huck that plane that you meticulously built by its wingtip?"

Anyway, today I took it to the park, made sure it was reasonably trimmed, and gave it a few SAL launches. I was surprised at the height it got, and pleased at the fairly calm way that it climbs to the zenith. Then I said "screw it, let's just get it over with," and did my best imitation of youtube videos of DLGers who look like they know what they're doing, and thankfully, the thing behaved exactly as I'd hoped. It shoots up, right in the direction I point it, and gives me plenty of time to get my hand over to the transmitter.

I did probably 20 DLG throws, and it felt better each time. I'm nowhere near being able to put full effort into it, but at least I'm not too worried about slamming it earthward. Once you do a few throws, you can really feel how the design of the plane really works around the throwing style. The wings seem to have very little drag, which requires higher flying speeds than I initially was thinking. A little extra nose weight seems good for launches, too; a little more heft to cut through the air. I'm sure I more than pay for it on the way down though. It's really cool the way you really feel the physics of energy: kinetic + potential, and that speed = height (or more precisely, speed^2=height). In my 20 or so throws, I managed to get one hand-catch. Hopefully that will improve!

Anyway, definitely an awesome style of plane, one that looks really simple at first glance, but is really a very elegant design that utilizes a lot of cool ideas from both the sciences of flight and materials.
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 12:49 PM
a.k.a. Bob Parks
Glendale, AZ
Joined Jun 2008
2,360 Posts
Now that you are into DLG's, your post count will go way up!
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 02:12 PM
The Prez....... again
kenh3497's Avatar
United States, IA, Rockwell
Joined Jul 2011
4,160 Posts
Now, might be a good time to cut up your credit card
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 03:25 PM
Registered User
Joined Nov 2010
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Originally Posted by kenh3497 View Post
Now, might be a good time to cut up your credit card
yeah, I hear you. Fortunately, I'm a slow builder, and I don't have a huge amount of free time for it, so that is a good limiter.
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 04:50 PM
Will fly for food
davidjensen's Avatar
Bellevue WA,
Joined Dec 2003
7,044 Posts
Just wait until you get some stick time on a 1.5m 4 channel DLG (the fling does not count).
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 07:38 PM
hass-alfed and bass-ackwards
carlsoti's Avatar
United States, AZ, Chandler
Joined Jun 2008
5,308 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenh3497 View Post
Now, might be a good time to cut up your credit card
I use my cut up credit cards as control horns, just as a hidden "reminder" to not be too reckless with the plane. It hasn't quite worked out, yet.
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Old Oct 08, 2012, 10:07 PM
Registered User
United States, MA, Waltham
Joined Dec 2001
7,130 Posts
If you keep flying it, you will find yourself getting much better at catching thermals, even with your larger gliders.

Don't get too fancy on the dlg's until you have some experience. And remember, if you switch to aileron dlg's that have less dihedral, it's much easier to get a tip strike.
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