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Old Nov 24, 2012, 08:08 PM
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Terre Haute, Indiana, USA
Joined Aug 2004
959 Posts
Forest Flyer
Glider name: High Aspect 3.1 M
Thermal (open class)
November 24, 2012
Duration of flight: 61 minutes 27 seconds (20 second motor run deducted)
Location: Terre Haute, Indiana, USA

Surprisingly good thermaling conditions for late in the day (3:00, 2.5 hours before sunset) in late November. I had to bail-out of a few thermals to avoid a relatively low ceiling (going into clouds is a bad idea!). Something nearby was generating a lot of lift despite the mostly cloudy conditions. Weather: 32 F (0 C), mostly cloudy, wind variable/west 0 - 3 mph (0 - 5 kph).
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Old Nov 24, 2012, 10:39 PM
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Joined Apr 2012
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Nice flying, Forest Flyer! I'm a little tipsy so I'll log your flight when I get back to the computer next time.

You demonstrated what I keep trying to tell anyone who will listen.

1. A cold ambient air temperature does not inhibit the formation of thermals.
2. Cold air temperatures can actually enhance the strength of thermals.
3. Thermals do, however, form differently than in high summer.

The "different kinda lift" that you caught sounds like the lift I worked until well after sunset the other day. In my case it came off a freeway (NOTE: I never fly over the freeway! It's a few hundred yards from my field and I just use said freeway for lift when the wind blows the lift back to me.) that cooled more slowly than the ambient air. It sounds like you found one of those heat sources too. In years past I had several really exiting times using the lift from a relatively warm bit of open water in the middle of a frozen lake.

My message? Don't think you won't find lift because of cold air temps.

G'night!
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Old Nov 25, 2012, 10:09 AM
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yorkshire UK
Joined Oct 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forest Flyer View Post
Forest Flyer
Glider name: High Aspect 3.1 M
Thermal (open class)
November 24, 2012
Duration of flight: 61 minutes 27 seconds (20 second motor run deducted)
Location: Terre Haute, Indiana, USA

Surprisingly good thermaling conditions for late in the day (3:00, 2.5 hours before sunset) in late November. I had to bail-out of a few thermals to avoid a relatively low ceiling (going into clouds is a bad idea!). Something nearby was generating a lot of lift despite the mostly cloudy conditions. Weather: 32 F (0 C), mostly cloudy, wind variable/west 0 - 3 mph (0 - 5 kph).
Nice long flight, well done, I will keep trying to find those thermals, my longest flight ever was in cold cloudy conditions with the 2 meter minimoa it it was end of winter and start of spring there was almost no wind though and the thermal was quite far away-too far for my dlg to reach, maybe I need to concentrate on the powered gliders for the winter as I'm not having much luck with the dlg-though it does keep me warm all that throwing.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 02:27 PM
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Joined Apr 2012
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Well? 22F with 10mph winds is just a bit too chilly for my tastes but I was sorely tempted to give it a go when I could see and feel the warm air rising from the local roads and parking lots. It's supposed to be 35F with light winds from the right direction tomorrow so I'm hopeful that I can find out if my new flying field is good for winter soaring. If not? I think I might move the new 3D ship ahead of the new gliders on my wish list since I can fly it by making a quick nip across the street instead of having to stand out in the cold for a while.
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 06:35 PM
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Terre Haute, Indiana, USA
Joined Aug 2004
959 Posts
No doubt that thermaling in winter can be pretty good. The main limitation is the low angle of the sun and the resulting lack of intense heating of the ground. I have found (at least around here) that thermals tend to be pretty anemic within 3 weeks or so of the winter solstice (Dec. 21), unless the atmosphere is very unstable and "thermalific". Another practical limitation is one's ability to withstand the cold air!

FF

Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
Nice flying, Forest Flyer! I'm a little tipsy so I'll log your flight when I get back to the computer next time.

You demonstrated what I keep trying to tell anyone who will listen.

1. A cold ambient air temperature does not inhibit the formation of thermals.
2. Cold air temperatures can actually enhance the strength of thermals.
3. Thermals do, however, form differently than in high summer.

The "different kinda lift" that you caught sounds like the lift I worked until well after sunset the other day. In my case it came off a freeway (NOTE: I never fly over the freeway! It's a few hundred yards from my field and I just use said freeway for lift when the wind blows the lift back to me.) that cooled more slowly than the ambient air. It sounds like you found one of those heat sources too. In years past I had several really exiting times using the lift from a relatively warm bit of open water in the middle of a frozen lake.

My message? Don't think you won't find lift because of cold air temps.

G'night!
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Old Nov 26, 2012, 06:56 PM
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I would probably add a week or two on that "dead stretch" here in Minnesota, FF, but I have high hopes for my new field. It's just a couple-hundred yards from a freeway and the rising air blows right to me if the wind is coming from the Eastern hemisphere. All those cars should heat up the pavement even if there isn't much solar heating going on. I'll have to depend on that solar heating if the wind is anywhere from the West.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 02:37 AM
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yorkshire UK
Joined Oct 2007
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The low angle of the sun is definintely the problem here for generating thrermals, I am finding that IF it is very calm lol, 7 till 9 am gets me "light" air and my throws last can last 1:30 to 1:45, then the air goes heavy and 1:20 is the bench mark, then around 1:30pm there is another period where an little thermal activity is present but not enough to climb but a 2 or 3 min flight may be possible if I'm lucky, after 2:30 then there is just heavy air again.
But it's normally windy so unless the winds are coming up the hill which is rare then my flights are 1min or so with lots of turbulance and no lift.

I only go down when it's calm now, roll on spring!

Got my turnigy beetle working my my new car pistol gt2c controls working, had to strip the controls down and put some wd40 into the pots though-cheap components I guess-had to the same thing to my dx6i but only after a few years use.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 05:08 PM
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It should have been a good day here in Minnesota but things didn't go so well. First, my brand new prop broke on my first launch, then I just couldn't find any lift after I switched props. Oh well, it was still a nice day to fly the 3D Yak.

BTW. If you have a plastic 11X6 prop from HK? Check out this thread. I'm just trying to get a warning out.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1779139

Cheers!
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 12:58 PM
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yorkshire UK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterlngh View Post
It should have been a good day here in Minnesota but things didn't go so well. First, my brand new prop broke on my first launch, then I just couldn't find any lift after I switched props. Oh well, it was still a nice day to fly the 3D Yak.

BTW. If you have a plastic 11X6 prop from HK? Check out this thread. I'm just trying to get a warning out.

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1779139

Cheers!
Thanks for the heads up, I bought some smaller ones from hobby king, the as28 replacement set and fitted them to minimoa and it worked ok and a 10*8 cheap one and that was ok too but both only used at fairly low revs, 1200kv on 2 cell lipo. The supplied prop broke on 3 cells and gave me a nasty bruise on my leg during testing-could have been a lot worse-gotta be careful with these things, I always stand behind my planes now when testing power systems.

Managed a short session this after just b4 it got dark the winds calmed down enough for a bit of a fly, tomoz is supposed to be flyable too so will have a play with dlg and probably the spitfire and maybe the minimoa if I can stand the rather cold -1c and 7mph northerly winds for long enough.
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Last edited by nigelsheffield; Nov 29, 2012 at 01:15 PM.
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Old Nov 30, 2012, 11:53 AM
More Altitude, Less Attitude!
chickenwing's Avatar
United States, SC, Ninety Six
Joined Mar 2008
547 Posts
chickenwing
Glider/plane: Radian 2m
Thermal or Slope: Thermal
Date and Time of Flight: 2012/11/30 10:00AM
Motor Run: 30 sec
Duration of flight: 6:50
Max. Altitude: 702 feet
Location: Ninety Six, SC

Not a great time, but there it is. I didn't find a thermal until my third launch, and that one was kind of weak and I lost it quickly. The funny part of the story is, as soon as I had packed up and started to leave, a dozen or so turkey vultures appeared and started circling. I guess timing is everything...
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Old Dec 01, 2012, 03:49 AM
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yorkshire UK
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Well winds were coming form west again yesterday though only light 7 to 12mph and there was no lift again on my little hill between fields so I went to the park and tried all round the park dodging the trees carefully but still no good, I went out to some farmers field which was frozen mud with some stumps of crop left and tried there but that was no better so I went back to my field, best I managed was 2 mins, so I had some lunch and took my spitfire down and had 4 good flights with that instead!
I will have a ride on my bike I think and see if I can find any west facing hills about as winds are always coming from that direction these days.
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Old Dec 01, 2012, 06:02 PM
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There are no short flights, chickenwing, just poor lift!
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Old Dec 01, 2012, 06:28 PM
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New contest thread is up here:

http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...1#post23415261

I suspect that submissions from the northern hemisphere will dwindle so I'm hoping our friends from the "nether regions" will pick up some of the slack.
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