DismayingObservation's blog View Details
Posted by DismayingObservation | Mar 01, 2007 @ 06:47 PM | 4,549 Views
I'm sure glad that I don't live in the southern US today. We may have had some gale force winds these last couple of days and nights, but those folks had some deadly tornadoes. You have my thoughts and prayers in Alabama.

Our wind seems to have died down. So, after testing the Blade CP and its new tail motor out in front of the house, 'twas off to the field for more fun with the Cessna and the T-Bolt. I tell you, I am really liking that Cessna more and more each day, so much so that I swung by the soccer park once again after a stop at my dentist for a cleaning. My teeth, that is. However, there are lots and lots of neat little tools that the assistant used that would be very helpful in building a new plane. Must investigate this.

By the way, I discovered a nicked radio lead on the Blade's ESC. I'll bet that was the cause of the glitches. I cut out the damaged section, soldered and shrink-wrapped the wires and voila! No glitching! It's amazing how stable that little monstrosity is with a fresh tail motor. E-flite is making a small fortune off of those things at ten bucks a pop.

Anyway, the Cessna caught the attention of a nice gentleman who was out walking his dog. He was blown away by the thing and hopes to visit our Sunday morning fly-in.

Still haven't reassembled the Savage since I've been busy with other things besides flying. It shall be redone very soon.
Posted by DismayingObservation | Feb 27, 2007 @ 08:41 PM | 4,532 Views
In case you weren't aware of the fact, Palm Springs is one of the windiest places on earth. Every so often, we get one heck of a blow...and today it is blowing! Gonna be like this the rest of the week.

Bad for planes.

Good excuse to put the new Wasp .28 engine in the Savage 25.

Team Orion was kind enough to quite literally handbuild an engine for me. I had so much hassle with the old one that Rick Hohwart himself stepped in and helped me out.

However, it sat on my shelf for a bit until I brought it in to the hobby shop so that they could install a Robinson Racing flywheel and a new clutch.

Sat there for a month and a half. They were having problems getting the flywheel to shim correctly, but all is now well.

So, here's hoping everything lines up correctly and I'll be screaming down the street once I break in this new engine.

Ah, if only most industries were as dedicated to customer service as our hobby manufacturers are...thank you, Orion. For the record, I called the tech department right after I got the engine back from them and I thanked both Rick and the gentleman responsible for most of the build.
Posted by DismayingObservation | Feb 21, 2007 @ 12:42 AM | 4,882 Views
While I'm on the subject of blogging, I thought that I should share something that's been bothering me for some time now.

Wikipedia has about 43,000 registered editors in good standing. Fewer than 1000 are administrators. Obviously, I'd quit at least once before. Just go back to my first entry here.

I am - or at least was - one of those thousand.

I spent four years writing and editing subjects ranging from full-scale railroading to classic cars and not a mere few on radio control.

Waste of time? Perhaps.

Wikipedia is a grand experiment and a noble vision gone horribly awry. There are more vandals than good users at any given time and I frequently found myself faced with the Sisyphean task of cleaning up after these yahoos.

I've found evidence on the internet of coordinated efforts on the parts of disgruntled individuals to discredit administrators...and I fell victim. These jerks sign up, do some reasonably good editing and then sneak in bizarre edits designed to catch the attention of an admin. When the admin cleans up the mess, the attacks begin. Worse, the "community" seems to be letting it happen.

Jimbo Wales, the site's founder, is a decent person. I only wish that he would step in to help clean up this cyber-playpen of his, now overrun by high schoolers creating nonsense pages and spammers from all over the globe, not to mention these destructive users of the type I just mentioned.

The upshot? I still edit at a neat little independent wiki dedicated to electric flight. It's called www.eflightwiki.com and virtually everything that I wrote on Wikipedia may be found there. I edit under this same user name.

Lots of good info there; I hope you'll stop by.

As far as Wikipedia is concerned, cold turkey never tasted so good.
Posted by DismayingObservation | Feb 20, 2007 @ 10:57 PM | 4,731 Views
Well, it's been another six months and I'm still flying the P-47 as often as the weather allows which, thankfully, is quite often here in the desert regions of Southern California.

I've had to make a grand total of two repairs in all this time, both to the ailerons. Not a lot of foam holding the control horns in place. My trusty E-flite 4200kv Park 400 finally up and quit. The new one works perfectly.

Correction: I had to replace the spur gear a couple of times when the old motor came apart in flight and I've had to CA the top of the tail back on a few occasions. The plane sometimes noses over on the roughish surface I fly on and off of. I've learned to keep the landing gear bent forward.

I'm all over the sky with this bird. Immelmans, loops, rolls, inverted flight, hammerheads...just too much fun. Vertical victory rolls right after takeoff are pretty much expected of me by the Sunday morning flight crew. In the event that "dumb thumbs," mechanical failure or act of God cause this plane to act as a core sampling tool, I will immediately march into the hobby shop for a replacement.

The Blade CP is hopped up now that I can actually fly it...whoa! Doggone little thing is FAST. Real easy to get disoriented if it gets too far away.

The old ParkZone J-3 now has Team Orion Slow-Max power and real radio gear. What a difference!

The latest addition is a FlyZone Cessna 182. Neat little plane, but I had some motor problems out of the box which damaged the rest of the plane due to lack of power on landing, now fixed. What a bargain!
Posted by DismayingObservation | Aug 24, 2006 @ 12:29 AM | 4,867 Views
I, like the characters on South Park, have learned something. Specifically, foam-safe CA really is safe for foam.

Ah, but add the wrong kicker...

Anyway, the new E-flite P-47 Thunderbolt will be repaired in the future with the correct stuff. My perfidy cost me a wing. I used the glue and kicker to replace a landing gear block that fell out. Result: The foam took on the consistency - and strength - of stale bread. Each time the block popped out, I glued and kicked it in. More and more stale bread. Oh, well. I have a $10 "reward" on purchases of $25 and up that I can take advantage of at the local Hobbytown USA. The wing and decal sheet would normally be about $30. I'm still out twenty bucks.

What a terrific plane this is, made even easier to fly with practice on my new RealFlight G3 simulator. Ditto for the help in flying my Blade CP. On the P-47, basic aerobatics like Immelman turns are a blast!

I URGE anyone who doesn't yet own a Great Planes C.G. Machine to obtain one ASAP. I balanced the P-47 with a level of precision that would frankly be impossible with the fingertip method. I can't help but wonder how much better the old Chipmunk would have flown had I balanced it with the CGM.

More nonsense with the HPI Savage and its engine. Savage is OK, Orion Wasp .28 is not. It's on its way to Orion's HQ in beautiful Yorba Linda, California. Maybe Nixon's ghost will bring it luck.

Until next time, arrivederci.
Posted by DismayingObservation | Jul 19, 2006 @ 06:14 PM | 5,198 Views
Funny thing...I'd forgotten that I'd started a blog page! Four months is a long time between postings.

That poor UltraFly Cessna made way for a Goldberg Chipmunk 400 which is now, well, wood chips. Failed aileron servo in flight. Couldn't keep it from tip-stalling as I was trying to bring it in.

The Chippie has made way for an E-flite Thunderbolt 400. Back to foam, says I. So where do I stand now? Another crash! CG problems. The replacement will be balanced with a CG balancer and not my fingers.

We persist.
Posted by DismayingObservation | Mar 03, 2006 @ 03:16 PM | 6,087 Views
Interesting...I've never felt the need to post to a blog before, but this is kind of cool.

As I write, the wind is blowing something fierce, not uncommon here. So much for practicing with the Blade CP. I'm still down one wrecked model airplane (my UltraFly Cessna 182) and I fear all three of my battery packs for my ParkZone J-3 Cub are toast. They served long and well.

Might tinker with the HPI Savage 25, an exercise in futility if ever there was one. I could go on forever about how much of a pain that truck is just to try and keep it running.

I must admit, this is a far more satisfying and friendlier place than Wikipedia. 20,000-plus edits. Six featured articles. Countless other original contributions. Protector of the weak, even. The site has at least two autistic users who contribute regularly and out of the hundreds of editors, I became the unofficial "welcome wagon" and mentor for these individuals. A nice feeling, actually. Spent two years toiling...finally had enough. Trolls and vandals galore. A naaaaasty troll did it for me. If the dweeb can gripe about me on his blog, I can gripe about him here. The meek may very well inherit the earth.

I hope to hear more from Charlie Hua over at UltraFly very soon. That's a class act if ever there was one.