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Old Nov 07, 2010, 12:04 PM
Balsa Builder. With some foam.
ArneHu's Avatar
Eastern Norway Scandinavia
Joined Dec 2009
1,071 Posts
Looks a bit tail heavy! Just a little more weight on the nose will fix the stall problem.

BTW. If I can't move the wing back or forwards to find the right balance. I use to bring with me some tape and small coins, to tape on the nose to make it more heavy. I know the weight of the coins, and can replace them with the correct weight in lead when i come home.
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Old Nov 07, 2010, 04:28 PM
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crazyracer's Avatar
San Luis Obispo, CA
Joined Oct 2010
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I added quite a bit of weight to the nose this afternoon for a little more flying practice. The winds were a bit unpredictable out of the south from 13-17 mph. Still, the plane handled MUCH better than yesterday. I don't have any video from today, but I'll try to get some this week if I can. The advice has been great so far. Tomorrow the winds are predicted to be around 5mph with a high of 63 degrees (balmy for Michigan this time of year Tomorrow should be my best day yet
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Old Nov 07, 2010, 04:35 PM
Making wood fly since 2007
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USA, MN, Rochester
Joined Mar 2008
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Hi Crazyracer,

Add this document to your list of tools. I have used it to balance all my planes and they all fly great. It is written by a very well known glider pilot. I agree with Arnehu on the tail heavy diagnosis.

Wayne
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Old Nov 07, 2010, 04:59 PM
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San Luis Obispo, CA
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Wayne, thank you very much for that article. Tomorrow I'll be following it to the "T" and I'll report my results. I'm very excited about this!
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Old Nov 07, 2010, 11:26 PM
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crazyracer:

I just got back from a contest.

Yeah, check your CG - it should be noted on the plans, and should be close to the main wing spar at the root.

Preflight hint: controls work the right way, and are at neutral; and the CG is at the marked location (I use a sharpie to make a little dot at the wing root).

Keep us posted.

Yours, Greg
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 07:11 PM
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San Luis Obispo, CA
Joined Oct 2010
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I owe this next video to the Gordy-Balancing how to guide. Wow what an improvement
Glider Day 2.wmv (3 min 41 sec)


The only problem I'm still having is during my turns. If you notice, when I make a turn that is anything more than slight, the plane looses quite a bit of altitude in a jiffy. Is this the nature of flying these gliders, or is there something I can change in my wing geometry to keep it from sinking so quick? Otherwise, the long flat turns are fine. I just wish I could turn sharper without it falling like a rock.
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 07:46 PM
AMA 5285 LSF 8104
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United States, OR, Hood River
Joined Aug 2008
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Personally, to me it appears you might need a slight bit more nose weight (or possibly nose down trim). As for the steep turns, let's make sure you understand some basic aerodynamics:

When the aircraft banks and turns, the nose will naturally lower and the aircraft descends. Up elevator needs to be applied when the aircraft is banked and when the aircraft rolls out, the up elevator is decreased or in some instances down elevator is applied. The steeper the bank angle, the more elevator movement required.

You are correct, you have made positive progress!

Keep on plugging away!

Scott
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 07:51 PM
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Orlando "Buzzards" FL
Joined May 2002
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The shim under the leading edge will cause the bobbing/stalling, incidence is already built in the GL as well as most "biggener" gliders to make them more stable.
It is a bit far from you (about 2 hours) but I strongly suggest you contact: http://rcsoaring.org/ near Grand Rapids, a day spent with the great group of guys there will advance you 2 months of flying by yourself.
Raed
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 08:40 PM
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USA, CA, Arcadia
Joined Apr 2006
345 Posts
Dan,
You are amazing!! You have caused a lot of us experienced fliers to relive the joy and excitement of being a new pilot! My first plane was a Super Monterey by Astroflight that I crashed seven times before I actually learned how to fly. I finally threw it away after I got tired of repairing it. I have had my share of Wanderers, Gentle Ladys, Midwest Silent Squire,slope lead sleds, pitcherons (Vmax), NSP Sparrow.....the point is I loved gliders! But I remember going to Cal State Los Angeles, ditching my science lab class to fly at the local slope.
Now since I live near NO hills, I fly electrics.

You are to be commended in being persistent on learning how to fly.

I have to agree with Aquila Guy in that your plane looks like it could still take a little more nose weight to make it more smooth.

Keep it up and keep us updated!


Vincent
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 09:25 PM
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San Luis Obispo, CA
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Raed - Thanks for the advice on the shim and adding weight. I took the shim out today before I started flying it, so that was not a factor in the most recent video.

This week the forecast calls for 60 degree weather and light winds. I'll be able to get out everyday this week and get some stick time in. I'll try adding a little more ballast to the payload tray and see what happens.

I don't know what makes me excited more; Flying the plane stress free, or knowing that soon I can re-monokote the plane because my crash frequency is decreasing. Flying a beat up ugly plane takes some of the fun away :/
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 10:14 PM
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crazyracer:

You are doing especially well, doing it on your own. That's the way I did it - all by myself. I expended three gliders before I flew one to a landing.

It is SO much easier with someone helping and instructing.

What the others said: turning reduces the lift available for keeping the airplane up (it is being used for the turn, instead) so you have to increase back pressure on the stick a bit. That increases angle of attack, and keeps the airplane up. Later, you will find that proper thermalling requires being able to execute a circle with no change in airspeed, and at a constant bank.

Turns do increase sink, make no mistake about that! That's why the good soaring pilots move the controls very little, and in periods of small lift, they just let the airplane fly along with out any control inputs for as long as possible.

Why aren't you in aeronautical engineering? Do they teach that at Cal Poly any more?

Yours, Greg
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 10:31 PM
Making wood fly since 2007
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USA, MN, Rochester
Joined Mar 2008
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Hi Dan,

That looks 1000% better than the first video. Nicely done. I am going to throw two more things at you.

Item #1, try to make easy flat turns. The Gentle Lady is not a high octane plane. Think style and finesse when you fly her and she will reward you with better flights. Your turns are looking good

Item #2, on one of your next flights when you are high in the sky, let go of the sticks and watch the plane. It should fly level and straight. If it doesn't you have a little more trimming to do. The goal is a neutral elevator and level flight.

Keep up the good work.

Wayne
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Last edited by Windependence; Nov 08, 2010 at 10:37 PM.
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 11:06 PM
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United States, IN
Joined May 2008
237 Posts
It still seams to be pourposing a little. You need some more down elevevator trim!! The nose should never be higher than the tail. (except on launch of course) Trim for a nice level hands off glide path. Then fine tune the rudder trim.

Marc 540
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Old Nov 08, 2010, 11:12 PM
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San Luis Obispo, CA
Joined Oct 2010
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The reason I am not an aeronautical engineer is because I like mechanical systems. Plus I like to have a job, and I know my M.E. degree is very versatile (not just things that go up in the air). The program at Poly is still very active and is extremely competitive.

In fact, you may find this as a surprise, but I've been working on two other projects the same time I've been fusing with this plane. Here are some other things I'm playing with:





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Old Nov 08, 2010, 11:13 PM
Kurt Zimmerman ≡LSF 4461≡
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Montrose, NY
Joined May 2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windependence View Post
Hi Dan,

That looks 1000% better than the first video. Nicely done. I am going to throw two more things at you.

Item #1, try to make easy flat turns. The Gentle Lady is not a high octane plane. Think style and finesse when you fly her and she will reward you with better flights. Your turns are looking good

Item #2, on one of your next flights when you are high in the sky, let go of the sticks and watch the plane. It should fly level and straight. If it doesn't you have a little more trimming to do. The goal is a neutral elevator and level flight.

Keep up the good work.

Wayne
I agree with Wayne. First thing is to get the plane flying flat and level with a neutral elevator. The last part of your vid shows the GL porpoising. Check and mark your current CG location under the wing. Then slowly bring your CG forward until the porpoising stops. Mark the new location of the CG.

If you feel is if you may be having problems with flat turns then I'd be checking for warps in the wings. My GL I start by making sure the entire wing is completely flat. I then add about a 1/8" wash out (AND NO MORE) on the inner wing panels. I do this by raising up the trailing edge of the wing at the same time holding down the center section of the wing. I use my Monokote heat gun to tighten up any wrinkles caused by twisting the wing.

When I trimmed my GL this way I was amazed to see how well the plane performed. My 16 yr old daughter got a personal best of 46 minutes on the GL.

It appears your flying time is later in the day. Once you get comfortable flying your GL then try taking it out during mid day when there is more thermal activity. Once you catch a good thermal you will be hooked for good.

One other thing I did was on days where there was a 5+ mph breeze I've added ballast to the GL. I simply taped about 3-4 oz of lead to the top of the center section. 30-40 minute flights were the norm for that day.

Have fun and take each flight as a learning lesson.
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