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Old Apr 04, 2016, 04:13 PM
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Contest
The April Big Sky informal contest.

THE MARCH BIG SKY INTERNATIONAL
LONGEST DURATION CONTEST FOR ALL ELECTRIC AND HAND LAUNCHED GLIDERS THERMAL SOARING AND SLOPE SOARING RULES AND INFO:

Contest will run from 12:01 am April 1st to 11:59 PM April 30th. Eastern US time. The contest is for ALL electric or hand launched gliders or airplanes of all sizes, all materials and all controls. The contest is intended to help motivate you to develop your thermal and slope soaring skills. The contest is open to all gliders, e-gliders and, if you like, e-airplanes too. If it glides, it qualifies.
In Thermal Duration, the contest is split into three classifications, 2-meter and under E Gliders, Open class E Gliders and Hand Launch Gliders.
You can post as many times as you like using as many planes as you like, but only one will be counted per pilot per category regardless of what kind of plane you are flying. You can replace a shorter time with a longer time any point during the contest. You can fly as many flights as you like.
Goal - longest duration thermal and slope flights without use of the motor.
THE PLANES:
* Any electric motor system or unpowered hand launch glider. (No winches or Hi-Starts).
* Any wing controls and any wing span
* Any construction
BIG SKY - ELECTRIC THERMAL SOARING
1) From a fresh hand or ground launch you can run the motor for up to 30 seconds, then you turn the motor off and you can not restart it. Reclimbs are not permitted. If you restart the motor the flight time is no good.
2) Motor time starts as soon as you apply throttle. This is an LMR, Limited Motor Run contest with a pretty long motor run allowed so that the motor run itself does not provide much advantage to anyone. Many will choose to shut off the motor in less than 30 seconds. No credit for shorter motor runs.
3) Soaring time starts when the motor goes off. Either you time the whole flight and subtract the motor run or you use two watches, one to time the motor run and one to time the flight. I have multiple timers on my radio so I can do this with my radio alone. How you do this is up to you.
4) You can time your own flight if you wish. You are on your honor. Time is truncated to the second. No fractions and no rounding. Read the seconds only.
5) Landing must be within 100 feet of the original launch location or the flight does not count. Landing must be on the ground/grass or pavement. Landing in a tree, bush, structure or other elevated spot that would not normally be a landing spot does not count. There are no other rules around the landing.
6) Time stops when the glider comes to a rest. So the clock keeps running if you clip a branch, or go to land and bounce back into the air. When the plane stops, time stops.
7) You can launch as many times as you like but each flight has to be from a fresh launch from the ground/hand. No reclimbs permitted.
8) Report your best time of the day by posting here. You can post as many times as you like, but only the best one will count. You can fly as many days as you like to work toward your best time. The goal is to achieve personal bests in the fun atmosphere of a contest.
BIG SKY - HAND LAUNCH THERMAL SOARING
1) Soaring time starts at release of the plane.
2) You can time your own flight if you wish. You are on your honor. Time is truncated to the second. No fractions and no rounding. Read the seconds only.
5) Landing must be within 100 feet of the original launch location or the flight does not count. Landing must be hand catch or on the ground/grass or pavement. Landing in a tree, bush, structure or other elevated spot that would not normally be a landing spot does not count. There are no other rules around the landing.
6) Time stops when the glider comes to a rest. So the clock keeps running if you clip a branch, or go to land and bounce back into the air. When the plane stops, time stops.
7) You can launch as many times as you like but each flight has to be from a fresh launch.
8) Report your best time of the day by posting here. You can post as many times as you like, but only the best one will count. You can fly as many days as you like to work toward your best time. The goal is to achieve personal bests in the fun atmosphere of a contest.
BIG SKY - SLOPE SOARING
1) From a fresh hand or ground launch you can run the motor for up to 5 seconds, if you need it to get into the lift. I would expect most slope flights will have no motor run but some sites need a boost to the lift.
2) Motor time starts as soon as you apply throttle and is subtracted from the total flight time.
3) Soaring time starts when the motor goes off. Either you time the whole flight and subtract the motor run or you use two watches, one to time the motor run and one to time the flight. How you do this is up to you.
4) You can time your own flight if you wish. You are on your honor. Time is truncated to the second. No fractions and no rounding. Read the seconds only.
5) Landing has to be within 100 feet of the original launch location or the flight does not count. Landing must be on the same level as the launch. Landing down the slope or up in the trees does not count. You must come to rest in a "normal" landing spot and be able to walk over and pick it up. I realize this can vary by slope site so you are on your honor as to whether this was a normal landing.
6) Time stops when the glider comes to a rest. So the clock keeps running if you clip a branch, or go to land and bounce back into the air. When the plane stops, time stops.
7) You can launch as many times as you like but each flight has to be from a fresh launch from the ground or hand. No powered reclimbs permitted. If you restart the motor the flight does not count.
8) Report your best time of the day by posting here. You can post as many times as you like, but only the best one will count. Try as many days as you like to get your best time of the month.
For either contest you report the results via post.
Report Format:
Your Name - Real or RCGroup Name - your choice
Glider/plane name and wingspan:
Thermal, Hand Launch or Slope:
Date and Time of flight:
Duration of flight:
Location: Nearest City and State or Country
Comments - You are welcome to report anything you like about the day, the flight. Pictures, videos, gps plots, etc are welcome but not required.
I will maintain the thread and keep the second post updated with the top 10 Thermal (2 meter class) top 10 Thermal (Open class)and top ten Slope reports. Only one flight of each type will be recorded in the standings for each pilot. A new better time will replace the original.
THREAD CONTENT -
While it's preferred that posts are about contest business; brief comments about items of common interest are welcome. This includes but is not limited to: new planes, safety warnings, tales of remarkable flights that might not be official entries, humorous incidents, well wishes for those facing health issues, the bloody weather, and messages of congratulation or conciliation. Short of your personal version of War and Peace all comments are welcome unless I receive multiple complaints.

Contest Records:

2 Meter Class:
Andy Grose (dee-grose)
Glider name:Radian
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight:April 19, 2012 11:20am
Duration of flight:1:38:04 (after 30 sec motor run)
Location:Tanner, Alabama
Max Altitude: 3028ft AGL

Open Class:
MrE / Larry
Sailplane: Bubble Dancer
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 13 October 2013 2:30PM
Duration of flight: 1 hr 52 minutes 37 seconds
Location: Club field in Gig Harbor, Wa
Weather: Mostly clear, +55°F, light variable winds

Hand Launch:

xStatiCa (Adam)
Glider Binary IV DLG (1.5m)
May 14th, 2015
Time 5:48pm
Duration 75:49
New Port Richey, FL

Slope:
744Drv
Sailplane: Radian Pro 2m
Discipline: Slope
Date time of launch: 26 Nov 12:57
Place: Lookout Hill overlooking Discovery Bay, Hong Kong
Conditions: E 5-10kts
Duration: 3 hrs 2 mins
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Old Apr 04, 2016, 04:17 PM
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Monthly Standings.

2 Meter:

Pilot: Jim AKA LJH
Sailplane: Windancer Full House 2M
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 04/18/16 1145 hrs
Duration of flight: 47:10
Location: New Cannan CT
Weather: W 3-5kts 75* Sunny


Pilot: Ernie
Sailplane: RET2M
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 04/17/16 1342 hrs
Duration of flight: 31:50
Location: West Chicago, IL.
Weather: W 6-8kts 75° Sunny

Jotasol
Radian
"Thermal"
4/4/16 2:30pm
Not a single bird--not a single cloud
28 deg. Wind was freezing!
Western New York
Flight time: 5 min 12 sec

Open class:

Fish99 Marlin
Sailplane: eflite mystique
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: April 20 2016 1240
Duration of flight: 15 mins 34 sec
Location: Club field in Stony Plain AB Canada
Weather: Mostly clear 15 C strong gusty winds
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Old Apr 04, 2016, 05:36 PM
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HI, guys.

It's an exciting day. It's my birthday! I don't want to wax too poetic but, when some asks my age, I say "respectable". This year will mark the 50th year since my first attempts at flying RC planes and the 55th year since my first successful rubber powered model. Guess if you must!

Last Friday I was trying to think of a good birthday present for myself and looking into ordering another cheap "wonder radio" for a friend and I noticed that there was an incredibly slashed price for the latest Turnigy 9 channel so I ordered one. I didn't even bother checking on the package because I was expecting it to be around 2 weeks. Imagine my surprise this morning when I checked the tracking page and it was listed as "out for delivery"!

Sure enough, it showed up just before lunch time, from Hong Kong to the frozen tundra over the course of a weekend to arrive on my birthday. Happy birthday to me!

I want to be careful that I don't sound like I'm endorsing any particular vendor, product, or service in a public chat thread like this so I will just say I' will probably post another thread about my "birthday miracle" and leave it at that. And now I have to learn to wrap my head around a whole new level of radio programing!

Cheers!
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Old Apr 04, 2016, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
HI, guys.

It's an exciting day. It's my birthday!

Turnigy 9 channel so I ordered one. <= Cool!

Cheers!
♪♫ Happy birthday to you! ♫♪

I'm using the FRSky Taranis with Open TX...tons of programming options, I hope you like your Birthday present!

Ernie
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Old Apr 07, 2016, 04:53 AM
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2 meter
Jotasol
Radian
"Thermal"
4/4/16 2:30pm
Not a single bird--not a single cloud
28 deg. Wind was freezing!
Western New York
Flight time: 5 min 12 sec
It was the first launch and the best.
Winds got worse after that.
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Old Apr 09, 2016, 05:04 PM
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Pilot: Ernie
Sailplane: RET2M
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 04/09/16 2pm
Duration of flight: 25 Minutes 12 Seconds
Location: West Chicago, IL
Weather: 34°F SW 5mph

This is more like it... 30 second motor run took me to 851', immediately hit a very large thermal took me to 1434.5 ft I started adding down trim to get me back to a reasonable height. The 25.12 time is a little off due to me not starting the timer after the motor run, sorry! There were 3 other glider pilots there and I think I got them hooked.

What a hoot!

Thanks for starting a fun contest.

Ernie
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 02:41 PM
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You are welcome, Ernie. I'm just a placeholder. I am embarrassed to admit that I do not know the entire history of the contest. IIRC it was started by aeajr. Perhaps someone could let us know the various people who set it up and got it running so I can add acknowledgments to the main page?

In further news; I have my new radio set up, mostly, for the Specter and got in a few flights. Trims are all set and the spoilerons are where I want them but I'm still working on adding camber and getting one timer to count down while the other counts up. I might just punt on the timer setup and start wearing my wristwatch again for timing of flights.

Cheers!
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
one timer to count down while the other counts up.
Cheers!
Peter, on the Open TX transmitters usually if the start time is 00:00 it is an up count, if you set the start time to say 08:00 it will down count from 8 minutes. Check to see if that is how your TX works, I'll bet it does.

Ernie
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 03:38 PM
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According to my search:

Aeajr started the contest in March of 2011
JumpySticks ran it from June 2011 thru August 2012
PeterIngh ran it from September of 2012 thru today

Apparently it started out as a Radian thermalling contest.

There ya go!

Ernie
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 06:48 PM
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Thanks for the info, Ernie! I'll have to compose a nice tribute to add to the main page.

Have I ever mentioned that I am old enough that I grew up in a world without personal computers of any kind? Learning a new interface can present challenges that some of our younger brethren don't even notice. I can make timer A count down and I can make timer B count up but I am still missing the trick of making both happen at the same time.

Cheers!
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
Have I ever mentioned that I am old enough that I grew up in a world without personal computers of any kind?
<== Me too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
I can make timer A count down and I can make timer B count up but I am still missing the trick of making both happen at the same time.
Cheers!
This is why I really like the Taranis, I have 3 timers... timer 1 starts at throttle up and cuts the throttle at 30 seconds, timer 2 starts at throttle up and just up counts, I don't even need timer 3 yet. The interface is infinitely flexible, if you can think of doing something you can do it... but you do have to think in logic terms but all the choices are in drop down lists. For safety sake I can re-arm the throttle by placing switch B up.

I have as much fun playing with the transmitter as flying the planes and gliders.

Sorry for the long dissertation, sometimes I get carried away.

Ernie
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Old Apr 12, 2016, 09:28 PM
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Ok that's high enough
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Just taking a seat.
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Old Apr 13, 2016, 11:44 AM
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Nothing to write home about but finally finished up my Windancer, I maidened it Monday evening in drizzle and all systems were a go with the exception of the brake which I finally got sorted this morning.

Here is my first real go at flying it:
Pilot: Jim AKA LJH
Sailplane: Windancer Full House 2M
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 04/13/16 1130 hrs
Duration of flight: 12:35
Location: New Cannan CT
Weather: SW 8-12kts 52* Mostly Sunny

I am surprised there was not more lift with the conditions today, seemed like there were small pockets which dissipated quickly and a lot of sink. I forgot to put the ALES limiter in this morning so I was counting to 15 for motor runs which had me about 400' I am guessing, the old Razor 2500 with a Maxon 4.4:1 box and a 10X8 on 3s 1300's gives plenty of performance. On my second climb I hit decent lift about 10 seconds after I stopped the motor and she got pretty far up there but I did not have my altimeter in her. I will say that this plane gets small fast after being use to flying the Oly650, I am also thinking that the transparent gold on the open section of the wings and black on the sheeted section is not terribly good for visibility....or it is just that the wing is so narrow. Still have a lot of trimming to do but she flies well and when in lift she climbs quickly. She is kind of like flying a big DLG and had no problem at all penetrating into the the bigger breeze. I am thinking she is going to be a winner.

Cheers
Jim
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Old Apr 14, 2016, 12:54 PM
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Had another lunch time session, a bit better than yesterday

Pilot: Jim AKA LJH
Sailplane: Windancer Full House 2M
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of flight: 04/14/16 1200 hrs
Duration of flight: 23:10
Location: New Cannan CT
Weather: W 6-10kts 57* Sunny

I set up a flight duration timer on my Tx so a bit easier to get accurate numbers. I also installed the ALES timer as well as my altimeter. First off I learned that I have the ALES timer set to 150M, have to change that I think, more on that in a minute. I had banged out two 10-12 minute flights, the lift was better today but not great, I did pick up some lift at about 45' and took it up to 245' which was pretty sweet. I am slowly but surely getting the plane dialed in, happy with the CG, happy with the flap to elevator mix, fairly happy with the camber mixes but I think I can do a bit better but need a really still air day. Really have to work on throws but slowly getting there as well. So the big flight today was my third climb, I climbed till the ALES timer kicked the motor off and cruised around, and then found some lift which was directly in front of me, I started circling and just kept at it, the plane went directly over me so I could not tell if it was going up but it was flying like it was in lift so I kept at it. The plane slowly made its way down wind and the farther it got down wind from me I could tell it was pretty darn high and still going up then at times it started disappearing so I brought her down a few hundred feet. When I took a look at the altimeter it reached just about 1000' which I do not consider all that high and while the Oly starts to get small you can still see it at that altitude....as I mentioned yesterday this plane gets small fast and will totally disappear when she is coming straight back at you at height. I had to cut the flight short because I had to get back to the office but the thermals finally started to kick towards the end of my session. I ended the flight with some rolls and loops and a couple fast low passes, considering it only weighs 23oz it will get up and go when you put the nose down.

Cheers,
Jim

Cheers,
Jim
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Old Apr 14, 2016, 03:45 PM
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It looks like things are picking up. Between contrary winds and learning to use the new radio I'm still a bit away from any official flights. I got the timer sorted out and even have the three-position switch doing what I want but still struggle a bit. This weekend I'm hosting a tutorial for my two buddies I talked into 9XR Pros so I'm hopeful that going through the whole process with them will help me get things down.

Cheers!
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