phil alvirez's blog View Details
Archive for December, 2016
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 30, 2016 @ 02:10 PM | 7,339 Views
as i started when balsa was the only material available, i have the privilege to witness the evolution to all the new materials at hand, and use them. at the beginning, you had to build an airplane. not like now, that you can buy it, charge the battery and go fly.
at that time we were modelers. now we are flyers. still, as the final goal is flying, there are 2 kinds of mentalities.
then, we had no chance but learn to build them. the easy way was with kits, that had all that you needed. or from plans. so we developed the skills. then, years later, some began to introduce new materials. plastic was heavy and not so strong, and took many years to reach a level where it could compete with balsa, and even outperform it. i began to use them just for the sake of seeing if could bring any improvement, and eventually settled to a mix of both, even using fuselages already made, because with them i got planes that fly better. its performance is improved, and sustain hardships better. best of both worlds.
but still i see that there are guys of the old guard that keep building planes from balsa. so there is room for both.
what matters is that we all like and enjoy dealing with model airplanes.
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 29, 2016 @ 08:53 AM | 7,126 Views
as i have faced radio failure, i want to present all that i have been into, and comments from experienced fellows.
i imagine this is a controversial issue, so i ask you fellows to follow it and reach your own conclusions.
will keep adding stuff, as i have it scatered and sometimes is hard to retrieve, so please keep coming back AND SEE THE UPDATES AT THE END.
i started having problems at a field where i flew for several years. for some time it was isolated loss of signal. then suddenly the bottom fell. the field has nearby 4 towers from the local radio station.
lets start with this:
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...e-Interference
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/show...o-Interference
then when asking experts, i got this:
Originally Posted by SkyNorth
How is the Internet being supplied in that area.?
Where I live , WiFi signals are beamed from a central Tower to small dishes on our roofs.
Is it possible a new provider has installed in your area, or picked up a couple of customers
that would require them to "beam" across your flying area?
there is also this comment from David E. Buxton :
High gain antennas for outdoor Wi-Fi are also a concern. Lookout for these antennas and don’t fly through their beams.
https://www.google.ca/webhp?hl=en#hl...w+does+it+work

more: got this:
Can you take all your systems including the good and the bad to another field? Try the following at a different field.
You may be...Continue Reading
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 12, 2016 @ 08:22 AM | 5,589 Views
when i was at college, at the place where i lived, when we paid the fare at the city buses, the driver handled a ticket made of sort of tissue paper about 1-1/2" x 4". we took classes at a building that was 4 stories tall and had a long aisle open. then 1 of the students made a paper plane with his ticket and launched it. as the wind blowed constantly towards the building, it created an upwards draft that kept it soaring for a long time. as a consequence, some of us mad enough kept our tickets in good shape, organized a competition and made paper planes and at the breaks between clases we launched and timed them. the average flight time was about 4 minutes. how about that! this is the best example of clift/slope draft i have ever heard!
anybody?
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 11, 2016 @ 11:55 AM | 5,554 Views
those who live in places where snows, dream of a white christmas.
problem is, it does not happen all the time.
sometimes we get it before, others after.
but man, in its arrogance, that makes him think that knows all, does not take in consideration nature.
instead trying to make nature to adapt to us (that will never happen), why we dont make christmas happen when, near that date, it snows?
years ago i had an english friend who told me that, whenever there was good weather (rare in old england), people just packed up their picnic basket and went out. that was a national holiday. (perhaps things have changed, but still sounds like a brilliant idea in a happy world).
think of it.

Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 07, 2016 @ 01:00 PM | 5,183 Views
i have seen experts doing all kinds of complex maneuvers with ease, but at landing, most of them seem quite nervous.
and its because when getting close to the ground, there is no tolerance.
when i learned to fly full size, 1 of the thing we learned was that when doing a turn downwind, the plane sank and became unstable. and many years later, when flying r/c, i remembered this.
now that am into r/c sailplanes, i recall when i got started many years ago, that there was a young man who flew sailplanes (no motor) and always landed at his feet. when watching him closely, i noticed that he never turned downwind. he did lazy 8s, facing the wind. and i have been doing this too. this way there are no surprises. so, even if i fly electric, that the motor can be started in an emergency, i always land deadstick and no downwind turns. and, if the field allows that, i do not flare-off. just push it gently towards the ground. this way, the landing is more smooth. no jumping and stalling at the last moment.
and the best advice to learn to land? practice! whatever is the most difficult thing to do, can be overcomed with more practice.
as i realized how hard was for me (and i think for everybody too), i decided to improve that, so i began to do short flights. climb for 30 seconds, then land. over and over again. so in 30 minutes i had 30 landings. kept counting until i got 6,000. by then, it was instinctive. now i dont have to think on it. is like walking: you dont have to think to move your legs, isnt it?
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 05, 2016 @ 06:18 PM | 5,027 Views
the kind of planes i got started with, were free flight hand launched gliders of 18" span, and those were the most fun i ever had.
with them i learned aerodynamics, to trim a plane, and to feel the thermals that lift from the ground.
i held 4 planes in 1 hand,between my fingers, and another in the other and began to launch 1 by 1 and watch how they behaved.
i learned to understand the timing, when there is no wind and suddenly a breeze begins to blow; how to follow the thermal and pick up the planes as they were landing, and launch them again until ran out of field. sometimes 1 of them got a boomer and flew away. still, sometimes i could get them back. 1 of them did over 10 minutes, and another over 11 and got them back. but most of them, when got a strong 1 flew away. no dethermalizer nothing.

and these are the days...
but it is now that, with the help of modern technology, am having a great time too. r/c electric powered 2 meters sailplanes, with vario that tells me when there is lift, following a thermal, is beyond the wildest dream i could have in those days.
Posted by phil alvirez | Dec 01, 2016 @ 11:07 AM | 4,539 Views
next week we will be below freezing and soon the field will be closed so no more flying until who knows... maybe end of march-or april, as it happened this year. so its time to start building-if still there is any1 who does-or pick on whatever theory or scientific idea any1 can decide-maybe discuss it here-to keep the mind busy.
and all of you who has-and will have-good weather to fly, enjoy! and of course whoever flies indoors too.