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Old Jul 08, 2012, 03:30 PM
Flying = Falling (Slowly)
dharban's Avatar
Tulsa, OK
Joined May 2004
2,491 Posts
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Five Easy Pieces

I went out just after sunrise this morning and put up 5 consecutive maxes with the Maxa in calm and neutral conditions. Overcast, no wind, 85 degrees, no apparent convection. Flights were uniform -- launch and fly the perimeter of the field with as little control input as possible. And no attempt to find or use lift. My logger ran out of space because of my boneheadedness, but the logs I did retrieve showed no signs of lift (or the entire quarter-section was uniformly up for the entire hour.

It might be useful as we entertain conversations concerning launch height if we could get good information concerning flight times from guys who are seriously practicing and from actual contests.

Certainly, my morning air performance does NOT mean that I can max every flight under contest conditions (even with the Maxa, I flown some 5 minute flights). But, under all conditions, I probably max about 65 to 70 percent of the time from 200 meters. This morning's results have encouraged me to keep track of all of my testing and practice times to see just what this plane's performance profile looks like. Keeping a decent record will eliminate the subjective practice of remembering more or less what we are doing, while forgetting what we actually did.

Ultimately, getting a handle on this kind of information under serious practice and contest conditions may be useful in understanding the nature of our tasks.

Happy Landings,

Don
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 06:43 PM
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Larry Jolly's Avatar
Joined Oct 2003
1,771 Posts
Don...
The reality is very simple....
If you set the launch height too high, everyone maxes and it becomes a precision slot landing contest.
If you launch lower fewer pilots max and it still becomes a precision slot landing contest...
If you launch too low then a few really lucky and or skilled guys max and it becomes a precision slot landing contest.
This is not rocket science.
200 meters is way too high, even the Radians max. When you bring the launch altitude lower the serious guys will invest in higher perfomance equipment.
One would hardly find it earth shattering that a high perfomance glider like a Maxa would have any great problems gliding for 9.5 minutes from 600 feet...LJ
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 08:00 PM
Flying = Falling (Slowly)
dharban's Avatar
Tulsa, OK
Joined May 2004
2,491 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Jolly View Post
Don...
The reality is very simple....
If you set the launch height too high, everyone maxes and it becomes a precision slot landing contest.
If you launch lower fewer pilots max and it still becomes a precision slot landing contest...
If you launch too low then a few really lucky and or skilled guys max and it becomes a precision slot landing contest.
This is not rocket science.
200 meters is way too high, even the Radians max. When you bring the launch altitude lower the serious guys will invest in higher perfomance equipment.
One would hardly find it earth shattering that a high perfomance glider like a Maxa would have any great problems gliding for 9.5 minutes from 600 feet...LJ
You are right. It is not rocket science. But what may be obvious to you or me is still not fully grasped by everybody. It simply seems to me that it might be more useful to help people discover what we think we know than to cram it down their throats.

While some of the newer participants may not fully grasp what is well understood by others, these guys are not stupid either. We might all be served well by encouraging participants to share in the discovery process rather than force feed them the answers. Who knows? They might learn something that we don't know.

In reporting my results from this morning I was not remotely suggesting that there was anything "earth shattering" about that performance at all. To the contrary, I was illustrating what is possible by a putz pilot in low lift conditions from 200 meters and suggesting that interest parties should look at their performance and the performance of others in an objective way. Encourage them to be observant and even the unwashed may learn what you know without feeling "talked down" to.

These people may not know what you or I think we know. But they are intelligent enough to discover if they are encouraged to observe. Forty years ago you were a "discoverer". Have a little faith that this new generation of discoverers will ultimately be as competent as you and your peers were.

Happy Landings,

Don
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 08:21 PM
WAA-08 THANK FRANK!
JimNM's Avatar
Las Cruces, New Mexico, United States
Joined Jun 2002
7,082 Posts
it's starting to sound like we need a 15 minute time rather than a 10....
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 11:00 PM
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TrekBiker's Avatar
United States, CA, Granite Bay
Joined Mar 2004
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Originally Posted by JimNM View Post
it's starting to sound like we need a 15 minute time rather than a 10....
10 minutes is more than enough time to spend staring up at the sky. I would rather go for lower launch heights than longer tasks if thats what it takes to increase the challenge. With XC long flights I can handle because its so extreme and a real adventure. TD and ALES standing on a flat field boring holes in the sky,... not so much.

Steve
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 11:08 PM
WAA-08 THANK FRANK!
JimNM's Avatar
Las Cruces, New Mexico, United States
Joined Jun 2002
7,082 Posts
True, my intent was to say longer time vs launch limit as a ratio, is going to be needed. Maybe as a secondary "class", rather like playing from the championship tees instead of the men's tee markers??
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 11:15 PM
Good for what ALES you
awilmunder's Avatar
United States, CA, Novato
Joined Jan 2009
443 Posts
Steve gets the credit for the most original ALES launch that I've seen to date. We got to the final round on Saturday. The sky was clear with no good lift indicators so we were all discussing strategies. As the launch recording got to the 10-second countdown before launch, a lone Radian suddenly takes to the air and while I thought it was completely out of control, it quickly dove towards the ground. As the actual launch window started, I waited for the faster planes to launch and with a few seconds to spare I launched and then I heard that same Radian taking off again to my right. I was told later that Steve mistook the countdown to the launch window as the launch window itself. He then dove down and landed nearby, reset his limiter, and ran back to the landing tape and was able to launch within the actual launch window. Bravo.
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Old Jul 08, 2012, 11:17 PM
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TrekBiker's Avatar
United States, CA, Granite Bay
Joined Mar 2004
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Originally Posted by JimNM View Post
True, my intent was to say longer time vs launch limit as a ratio, is going to be needed. Maybe as a secondary "class", rather like playing from the championship tees instead of the men's tee markers??
200 meters may be too much for a 10 minute task. The CAM altitude limiter can be set for 100, 150, and 200 meters. I would say that 150 meters may be a better set point for a 10 minute competition but that would make it more difficult for newbie pilots and for the foamies. If our club (SVSS) elects to go with 100 or 150 meter launch limits I for one will be retiring my Radian and will be flying something more high performance with more ranging ability.

Steve
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Old Jul 09, 2012, 01:11 PM
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United States, CA, Granite Bay
Joined Mar 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awilmunder View Post
Steve gets the credit for the most original ALES launch that I've seen to date. We got to the final round on Saturday. The sky was clear with no good lift indicators so we were all discussing strategies. As the launch recording got to the 10-second countdown before launch, a lone Radian suddenly takes to the air and while I thought it was completely out of control, it quickly dove towards the ground. As the actual launch window started, I waited for the faster planes to launch and with a few seconds to spare I launched and then I heard that same Radian taking off again to my right. I was told later that Steve mistook the countdown to the launch window as the launch window itself. He then dove down and landed nearby, reset his limiter, and ran back to the landing tape and was able to launch within the actual launch window. Bravo.
that was definately a brain fade on my part. In the rush to get it landed and relaunched the Radian wing got skewed sideways, barely got it out of my hand to launch on the window closing buzzer and then had a hard time turning left due to the crooked wing. Flight suffered and cost me a trophy. From now on I'm taping that wing in place. It was a great day though.

Steve
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Old Jul 09, 2012, 04:18 PM
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United States, CA, Folsom
Joined Jul 2007
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You went the wrong direction on that last flight anyways!

JT
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Old Jul 09, 2012, 04:49 PM
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TrekBiker's Avatar
United States, CA, Granite Bay
Joined Mar 2004
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Originally Posted by jtlsf5 View Post
You went the wrong direction on that last flight anyways!

JT
Tru Dat...

from now on Kermit is going to have a foam shadow on launch

Steve
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Old Jul 09, 2012, 06:17 PM
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United States, CA, Folsom
Joined Jul 2007
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Originally Posted by TrekBiker View Post
Tru Dat...

from now on Kermit is going to have a foam shadow on launch

Steve
Catch him if you can...

JT
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Old Jul 09, 2012, 07:59 PM
Good for what ALES you
awilmunder's Avatar
United States, CA, Novato
Joined Jan 2009
443 Posts
I don't know what it was about Kermit on Saturday but on that last flight I was in good lift all by myself and JT came in underneath me and pretty soon I was sinking down and he was floating up. I think I must have relaxed thinking that with Kermit there I must be in good air but that certainly wasn't the case.
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Old Jul 10, 2012, 06:33 AM
turn, turn, turn.
Athol, Massachusetts
Joined Oct 2005
10,202 Posts
The time and tasks are perfect the way they are.

Remember, this is electric launched TD.
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Old Jul 10, 2012, 10:53 AM
Thermal Junkie
Leadchucker's Avatar
Joined Sep 2008
3,360 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny Sharp View Post
The time and tasks are perfect the way they are.

Remember, this is electric launched TD.
Seconded
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