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Old Apr 09, 2012, 09:26 PM
Registered User
United States, FL, Melbourne
Joined Apr 2009
431 Posts
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big old guillows lancer flight

took my big guillows lancer out for a flight today. great slow flyer. just floated around. its big 80 inch wing span version. i put it way up and killed the motor. it just stayed up there until i brought it down. i gotta kink in my neck. next time i will bring a low back chair and time it for fun on the dump thermals.
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Old Apr 10, 2012, 01:49 PM
Hatters gonna hat.
madbomber's Avatar
United States, CO, Denver
Joined Apr 2011
359 Posts
Is there a way to have some idea of where the thermals are before you get in the air or do you just fly the plane around and see how it acts to find them? There was a guy at my field the last time I was there that had a plane named something like "Minimosa" that was modeled off of an old timer soaring plane and it looked really fun.
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Old Apr 10, 2012, 02:21 PM
Stupid Gravity!
Franny B's Avatar
Arvada, Co
Joined Feb 2006
843 Posts
Hi MadB,

A little trick for thermals is to watch the relative wind speed. Next time you are at the field and it is warm with no temp inversion (sound travels a lot better and farther during an inversion), look for the average wind speed and direction. Assume that won't change on its own. Now, as you stand out by the runway, feel the wind slow down for a minute or two and then speed up and then back to the average. What you are feeling is a thermal approaching you and then passing by you. Think of them as a mini tornado or a large vacuum hose that moves with the normal wind flow and direction. When the thermal is up wind of you, it is sucking up air from all around. That coupled with the ambient wind direction will make it feel calm where you are standing. It pulls up wind and cancels out the wind speed. Then as it passes, you feel wind faster than the ambient because its sucking action adds to the wind speed. So, the moral of the story is never take off when the wind is above ambient. Always take of when it is calm and you will launch right into lift.

Also, the thermals move all over the place, and start and stop, but they are created by relative hot spots on the ground. Look for dark, dry areas up wind and realize that the thermals it produces will drift down wind. Also watch your wings... When you stick one wing in a thermal, it will raise that wing and cause the airplane to roll. Roll opposite and right into the thermal. With some practice you will be able to feel the thermals edges and stay inside it. They are very dynamic those thermals... They are best the higher up you are as they are bigger and more powerful at the top.

Contests can easily be won with an average airplane and a good knowledge of the field and the thermal dynamics. It isn't just chance...

Franny

p.s. Sorry to hijack Paul... Great Lancer by the way! I love those little guys, but a big one would be great! f.
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Old Apr 10, 2012, 06:15 PM
"Butchering Balsa since 1971"
CashRC's Avatar
USA, TX, McKinney
Joined Dec 2003
1,060 Posts
It also helps if you have a plane that will "signal" the air it's in. When I go thermal hunting, I usually get pretty high, and I'll basically let the plane drift...I keep it within our fields boundries, not over the pits and out of traffic, and watch it. Some planes are just happy as can be to let you know they're in a thermal, my Bomber will bob and pitch quite a bit in lift. My So-Long is a bit slicker, and if you're not careful, or not watching, you'll bull right thru light lift and never know it's there...most of my planes tend to fall between the two.

Franny is spot on also. Take some time to look at your field, look at places that might generate lift..dark spots, places that cool or heat rapidly, remember, it's temperature differential that generates a thermal, so you want uneven heating, causing the warmer air to climb in relation to the cooler air.
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Old Apr 10, 2012, 06:17 PM
"Butchering Balsa since 1971"
CashRC's Avatar
USA, TX, McKinney
Joined Dec 2003
1,060 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by paulatgis View Post
took my big guillows lancer out for a flight today. great slow flyer. just floated around. its big 80 inch wing span version. i put it way up and killed the motor. it just stayed up there until i brought it down. i gotta kink in my neck. next time i will bring a low back chair and time it for fun on the dump thermals.
I like that Lancer Paul!! Did you blow the plans up yourself? I have a set of plans for a 72" electric Comet Sparky that's on my to-build list..
Enjoy that bird, looks like a lot of fun!
Cash
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