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Old May 29, 2010, 02:47 PM
Late for work again!
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Northampton, England
Joined May 2004
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BARCS Radioglide 2010

Thought that I would report on my progress at the Radioglide 2010 competition and describe what it's all about at the same time. It's my first glider competition and I had a fairly steep learning curve with the rules this morning (although I had read and digested them beforehand!).

Saturday 29 May
Turned up early to a small field at Marsh Gibbon near Bicester (got lost finding it, should have used the satnav!), grey skies, breezy and not looking too promising.

Checked in Tx, only pilot on Ch 62 so that was good. Chatted to one of the comp staff and picked his brains on the rules and saw the entry list, only 33 flyers (it was packed in the 1980s apparently).

Met Chris Foss and had a short chat, it rained later and we had a much longer chat!!

They laid out five (or six) electric winches next to each other with landing circle tapes behind them, getting nervous now as I had never used a winch.

Plead for mercy with the competition director to use the bungee, nope, not allowed, doh!!

Looking round at the models I could see that I was out of my league despite the pre-advertisement of 'bring anything that you have got'. With the strong wind and worries of snapped wings on the winch I selected the only available weapon, my Multi-Phase.

Round 1: I was paired up with a lovely chap who gave me advice on using his winch and I was called forward to launch, gulp!! With no power at all the wings bent upwards alarmingly during the launch and I was very relieved to get off the line in one piece!!

Sat into wind, losing less height than the carbon models with top advice from my 'spotter', a good circuit and a reasonably tidy landing within the landing bonus zone, 901 points out of 1000, bargain!! Very pleased with that.

I did the timekeeping and spotting for my assistant next, quite a responsibility as messing up could lose him points.

Two stop watches are used, one counting down 10 minutes 30 seconds (from the start of the 30 second launch window to the end of the slot) and one to count up air time from winch line release. There are penalties for overflying the time with a zero score for more than 30 seconds over.

He managed 9 minutes 57 seconds and the full spot landing bonus of 50 points, 'he's done this before' I thought to myself!

Round 2: Was called to the launch line in drizzle, soggy launch downwind (Cumulo Nimbus nearby shifting the wind) and then it started to rain again, very hard! Landed in a heap and ran for cover, very difficult trying to keep a 12 foot span wooden model dry in a field!!

Soaked and not very happy, they voided the round which was a good move.

Looking forward to better weather tomorrow and the hope of doing the same or better, will try to take some photos but was far too busy with my 'head on fire' today!!

Great fun, cheers.

Gary
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Old May 30, 2010, 03:24 PM
Late for work again!
Gary Binnie's Avatar
Northampton, England
Joined May 2004
1,868 Posts
Day 2

Sunday 30th May

No messing about today, straight into flying at 09:30. Fair weather but breezy. First flight was a bit short on duration but scored maximum landing bonus. Not so good with the winch today, in an attempt to lower stress on the wings I reduced the climb angle but this resulted in the Multi-Phase flying off of the line.

While trying to land for a second attempt a gust got it on the approach and she went in on a tip, can be mended.

Swap to my Flair Albatross (just trying to keep scoring points), this was no better and flew off the line as well and when it didn't it distorted the plastic towhook and popped off early (need to bin all the plastic hooks!). They did tannoy for a hand tow line for me and still would not let me use the bungee, I do think they should look at this rule for next year.

The multi launch competition finished at 13:00 with a prizegiving at 13:30, don't know where I came exactly but it wasn't last so I achieved my aim!

The F3J comp started at 14:00 and they were certainly working hard in the strong wind. Two models collided a long way down wind, one lost it's tip panels and the other spiralled in. Line breaks and all sorts of other fun on the flight line, glad I was not involved!!

A good learning experience for me and I will definitely go again next year, hopefully with a fair method of launching older type gliders and might even have a moulded machine by then (I have to give in to progress one day!!).

Cheers

Gary
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