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Old Aug 22, 2012, 01:00 AM
Hunting for Goat Lifters
Titus ZA's Avatar
South Africa, GP, Randburg
Joined Jul 2012
109 Posts
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Cracker of a weekends flying

What an amazing weekend of flying it was this past weekend. Friday afternoon I was itching for some flying, but the wind was up a bit. however windfinder showed that it was dying down quickly. So I waited till about 4pm and headed out to the park. The air was very warm and still with a gentle breeze blowing. So got the Blackjack out and got into the swing of things and hunting for lift. Had a good couple of flights with flights well into the 3-4min bracket. Then I started to find some lift that was pretty good in the corner of the field. So a good launch up and out to the corner an started to work the lift. Next thing I know im pretty high. So leave the thermal and head back to where I found it and what do you know, there it is again. I worked it for as long as I could and then eventually came down. As it landed in my hand, I flick the switch to stop the timer and look down at the display. 7min 38sec. Wow, best flight to date. Really chuffed with that. starting to get the hang of it, although I think the plane is making up some of my mistakes.

One thing I need to try figure out is that I struggle to circle the thermal. When I bank the plane, it noses down a bit and looses altitude. So need to figure that out. think the CG needs to come back a bit and I also think it is still flying too slowly. So need to work it out and do some more research. But apart from that, Iím loving this plane. It certainly draws a lot of attention at the park with people asking what is it, how does it fly, where is the motor and the likes. And they are all often amazed that its just from the thermals.

Anyways, Sunday I headed out for some sloping with Mikegbgh and Norbert. Got there and the wind was pumping. Windfinder predicted 9knots the entire day, well that certainly wasnít 9 knots. We measured the wind when we got there and it was averaging 45kph. So I didnít fly straight away would see if the wind died down a bit ,as the alula canít handle that kind of wind. The other guys got the planes out and Norbert even got his PSS jet out. Canít really recall what it is. I have some pics which I will upload when I get a chance.

Anyway, the wind started to back off and I thought what the heck and got the alula out. So I tossed it off the hill and played in the lift band for a bit. So I sat down in chair next to the other guys and went up and down the face of the hill for a while. Next then I notice is that when the big thermals started coming through the little alula just made no forward movement but just took off skywards like it was on an elevator. So I flicked the switch to get my timer going, at this stage I had been flying for about 20min. So I got some altitude and started moving away from the hill and began working the thermals. Wow, what a blast I was really impressed at the altitude I was getting. The lift was fantastic and the bigger planes had no issues at all with having to scratch for lift. I eventually landed and stopped the timer, it indicated 42min. So that was just over an hour flight on the alula. Fantastic.

Yesterday I took the Blackjack out to the park again. Not a lot of lift around and I kept launching into sink so not great flights. 1-2 min flight. However later in the afternoon I started to search that same corner of the field that I got that 7min flight in Friday. After a couple flights in and around there I finally managed to catch some lift and was able to bag a 6min 28sec flight to end the day. Not bad.

I am thoroughly enjoying the flying, I just need to get my Pathfinder some servos so that I have a decent slope plane. I now need to work on getting the Blackjack sorted and also work on my thermal reading skills. One step at a time. As long as I am making progress I am happy.

Thatís kind of it for now.
To those that read my miserable dribble, thanks again. More to follow soon, along with some pics from the weekend.

Cheers
T
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Old Aug 22, 2012, 04:11 AM
ค๔๔เςtє๔ t๏ R/C
resonatortune's Avatar
United States, WA, University Place
Joined Jul 2012
221 Posts
Whew, long read but worth it!

I would love to see some pics and also sounds like an awesome weekend!

Happy flying!
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Old Aug 22, 2012, 04:53 AM
Hunting for Goat Lifters
Titus ZA's Avatar
South Africa, GP, Randburg
Joined Jul 2012
109 Posts
Haha thanks. Sometimes I just ramble and rattle on about stuff and other days am a man of few words, just depends how the flying has gone and what's on my mind. Lol

Thanks for reading. I will get some pics up tonight.

Cheers
T
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Old Nov 14, 2012, 06:13 AM
Upwardly Mobile
mikegbogh's Avatar
Roodepoort, South Africa
Joined Aug 2007
1,036 Posts
Hi Titus,
The Bateleur is one of my favourites, I must say as a relative new commer to thermal and slope flying, your progress is astounding, and getting these long flights gives you the stick time that will add to your experience.
You must ask more questions, let me explain, on a hot thermic day you will get lift and sink cycles, I used to time and chart them when flying comps, so when you find a thermal in the corner of your field and go back there 6-7 minutes later chances are if you find lift it is the next thermal, often in the same place becauce somewhere upwind there is a trigger, a change in colour or structure.
You will notice I always use a streamer on the slope, this also indicates when a strong"goat lifter" is approaching and if you have the height to head out to meet it.
Glad you are enjoying gliding, something about energy management that power pilots just dont understand.
Regards
Mike
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Old Nov 14, 2012, 06:23 AM
Hunting for Goat Lifters
Titus ZA's Avatar
South Africa, GP, Randburg
Joined Jul 2012
109 Posts
Hey Mike! Agreed, the bateluer is also one of my favorite birds. A real thermal master.

This past weekend was just fantastic. I love that new slope, the sights and sounds are awesome and its great to have our feather friends showing us where the thermals are.

I was seeing the cycles, but struggle to find the thermals when I needed them and also wasn't really timing. But it's something I need to work on. The 56min flight was a great way to start my day, even though I ran out of lift or rather talent and had to take a walk to the bottom of the hill, I didn't really care. I was just having an absolute blast.

I am stil gob smacked about that goat lifter you launched into with your yellow plane. That was just crazy lift and also gives credit to a fine plane that you built out of nothing and out of your head.

I am trying to absorb as much info as I can from yourself and Norbert and will continue to ask questions. Thanks again for sharing your vast knowledge and for allowing meto tag along.

Cheers
T
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