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Posted by lmopar69 | Jan 07, 2011 @ 06:01 AM | 13,213 Views
Hey folks. Im down to less than 40 days left on this tour in Kandahar! SWEEET!

Got a few Christmas pictures while I was doing medevac out of a place named Patrol Base Wilson. Spent Christmas and New Years there.

Santa stopped in and wanted to check out the helicopter, so my fellow reindeer CW2 John Brown and I took him out and showed him around. Luckily Santa was packin an M-4 and some body armor this year! He now has some time behind an M-240 machine gun too. Im guessin his sleigh will be capable of putting some lead down range next year for his combat tour in Afghanistan!

Ya'll take care and see ya at SEFF this year!

Posted by lmopar69 | Nov 29, 2010 @ 03:19 PM | 13,703 Views
Hey folks, its been awhile since I posted anything new. Sorry, no current pictures this time, my camera battery is dead and I forgot my battery charger in Kandahar.

Im currently out at a small base somewhere between Kandahar City and Lashkar Gah. Not a bad little joint, but, living in a tent with 10 other people can get old quick. Im on a 2 week rotation out here doing Med Evacs again. Unfortunatly it has been pretty busy. In less than a week we have flown about 20 hours. If you figure each mission to be about 1.5 hours long, thats a considerable amount of missions flown. We have picked up pretty much every type of person you can think of. Afghan soldiers, US soldiers/marines, and civilians. A couple have been young kids. Those really suck, because it kinda hits you in the heart to see these 6-8 year old kids all messed up from improvised explosive devices, gunshots and even one from falling into a 60 foot deep hole and bashing his head open VERY badly.

We have picked them up at bases, fields and out in the middle of open desert. Makes for some tough landings at times. One the other day took about 4 attempts just to get in there due to the insane amount of dust and the fact that we were flying in the dark with night vision goggles. Its quite a challenge over here sometimes.

But, no matter who it is, or where they are, we go get them and give them the best possible care we can and get them to the hospital as fast as possible. Thats our job, and out of...Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Nov 08, 2010 @ 04:36 PM | 14,816 Views
Hey guys and gals, here are the pictures I promised of my SBACH 342 from www.redwingrc.com Lucky for me I talked my wonderful wife Kristy (kmopar69) into holding the plane for me.

I really like the look of this plane! Cant wait till my tour in Afghanistan is over so I can get it in the air.

Laine....Continue Reading
Posted by lmopar69 | Nov 05, 2010 @ 11:39 AM | 13,316 Views
Hey guys, I stopped in Ballwin, MO yesterday on my R & R leave and met with Tim Pastor from www.redwingrc.com. I picked up my one off, custom covered 73" span SBACH 342 that I will be building with E power!!!

This plane is BEAUTIFUL!! I pulled it partially out of the box and looked it over, and man oh man does it look good! I soooooooo cant wait to get started on this thing! Pics will come in a few days when I get home and can pull it out of the box completely.

Thanks to Tim from redwing RC for ordering me a "one off" SBACH, and thank you to Bob (rcjetpilot) for being so generous and paying for this plane for me! There is a flight reserved for you if we ever get the chance to meet up buddy! Thank you!

Posted by lmopar69 | Oct 30, 2010 @ 07:05 PM | 13,492 Views
Not only did we get the wife a bad AXX new truck, but, my 15 year old daughter will turn 16 while Im back in Afghanistan. So, we picked her up this nice little 2000 Dodge Stratus today. She's happy, and she just got done washing it and vaccuming it out. Wish I could get her to was and vaccum my cars/trucks!

Posted by lmopar69 | Oct 28, 2010 @ 09:44 PM | 13,269 Views
Wow, in no way did I expect to get home from Afghanistan on Tuesday and buy the wife a brand new 2010 Dodge truck on Thursday!

So, on a whim, we traded in her 2008 Chrysler Aspen and drove home in this 390 horsepower, Cornhusker Red (oh yes, we are Husker fans), 2010 Dodge.

She's happy, Im poor, life is good!

Posted by lmopar69 | Oct 23, 2010 @ 02:18 AM | 14,376 Views
Hey folks, tomorrow morning I should be jumping on a plane on my way home to Tennessee for 2 weeks! After 7 long months, its finally my turn.
Cant wait to see the family, sleep in a real bed, eat real food, fly a couple planes and just relax some!

Posted by lmopar69 | Oct 11, 2010 @ 10:12 AM | 15,670 Views
Hey guys, I aint been around much lately. Staying too busy and usually too tired to really do much after work.

So, lets see, in the past couple weeks, I spent a week doing Medevac Chase out at another small base, came back, flew nights for a week on QRF (quick reaction force), then went to days on QRF where I am at now.

We have done some pretty cool stuff and had some tough missions. I did a resupply into a tiny little field in the middle of the Argandab River Valley, (VERY bad area) a couple days ago that almost didnt turn out well! Luckily do to an excellent crew with me, we got it done without incident. The ground guys were quite happy to get some beans and bullets out there, and they looked like they needed it.

Yesterday we worked with some Canadian Special Forces fellas and inserted them into some landing zones that were pretty dang cool. We ended up doing 4 two wheel landings and two one wheel landings to drop off and pick up these guys at some mountinous areas that there was just no way to fully land the helicopter. Our sister ship got a few pictures of us doing the the infills and exfills that I'll post here.

Luckily in just a shade under 2 weeks, I'll be heading home for my 2 weeks of mid tour leave. I am so ready for it too. Some time off will be great and seeing my wife and kids again will be awesome! My oldest son just turned 17 a few days ago, and my youngest son will be 9 in a couple days, my wife recently had surgery and my youngest will have surgery in about a week and my 15 year old daughter just got her braces off. So, things have been busy at home too and I missed it all. Luckily I have a wife thats tough as nails and can handle all this stuff. Love you guys!

Enough rambling for now.

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 23, 2010 @ 01:52 AM | 14,470 Views

a link to some photos from our imbedded photographer, Eric De Castro, took during our time here at Ramrod doing Medevac. Im sure there will be more of us doing what we do as the week goes on. Gotta thank Hobby-Lobby.com for sending over a few of the micro p-51s! I passed them out, and a few have survived their first combat missions. Great little planes for when the wind is down and we have some down time (which does not happen very often).

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 22, 2010 @ 02:24 PM | 14,464 Views
Sorry to say, lost some great friends who were even better soldiers very recently. Its hard on all of us, but we will drive on. Its our job and its what they all would want us to do. The ones they leave behind will be in my prayers.

God speed boys, you will never be forgotten. WARLORDS!

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 14, 2010 @ 11:10 AM | 15,748 Views
So, I will be turning 36 on the 30th of this month. It seems like yesterday I was that young 20 year old E-5 in charge of a squad of soldiers. Now, like all the sudden, Im the old guy getting close to retiring. I am over 18 years of Active Duty Army Service now. On my 5th deployment, and 7th time overseas.

Somehow my family has held together for this long and is doing great. Mainly because I have such a wonderful wife who can handle anything that is thrown her way. I am also very blessed to have such great kids. Love you all very much!

So, I've noticed that all that upper body muscle I used to have seems to have slid right off my chest and shoulders and ended up around my waist. Guess its a sign of getting older, but, I just cant let it happen. I wouldnt say Im overweight by an means, but, I have looked better. So, 4 miles of running tonight, and a ton of abdominal stuff later, and I feel like I have been hit by a truck. Its a "good hit by a truck" feeling though. Now I just need my schedule to cooperate a bit, and I'll be able to do the same every night.

I go on mid tour leave in a bit over a month. So, gotta look good for my wife too! She looks great, so I figure the least I can do is get that 6 pack back for her.

See ya'll later!

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 07, 2010 @ 02:45 PM | 14,160 Views
Well, we got ahold of some more paint yesterday, so, more painting!!! The beast is coming along nicely! We will also get the roof painted black soon and maybe the hood.

The "580" on the back is the tail number of the helicopter I was flying the day I took the truck mechanics that work on the van for a ride. So, as a tribute, they put "580" on as our vans tail number/emergency phone number. Nice!

Today one of the guys ordered 36 feet of 20% limo tint for it (yeah, its got a LOT of windows!). We should have a awesome musical horn/pa system on order shortly http://www.cogapa.com/ordering.htm
We may have a siren controller, some subwoofers, and an amp coming over soon, and we are looking for some tubing to make sidepipes for it! Oh yeah, no muffler and side pipes! Thats the plan!

Sorry about the bad pictures. The sun had just set, and the flash shows all the dust in the air over here. Pictures at night dont work out well.

Soon, the bars will be on the windows, the roof will be black, and hopefully we will have more red lights on the inside. We also may end up with a old police light bar from the states. One of our guys used to work for his home town police. We'll see if that pans out.

Our Battalion Commander does not have a very good sense of humor though. So we are fully expecting him to make us paint over the "Policia" on the van. I came up with a new name for it though if that happens. SWAT. Standard Warlord Aircrew Transport.

We can still use any parts, gizmos, gadgets or whatever for it if ya'll have some cool junk laying around!

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 05, 2010 @ 11:19 AM | 14,297 Views
So, those of you who know me, know that Im a bit "resourceful". I found this van abandoned here in Kandahar, asked for it from the MP's, got it, spent A LOT of time getting it running and legal, then handed it off to my buddies at the motor pool.

Here is the basic story.... the "asking for your help part" is at the end...

13 hours later, I got my van back! When it went in, it was a "normal" 15 passenger Dodge 350 van that would not go over 10mph due to fuel starvation. It came back with LED lights on the front bumper hooked to a guarded switch, LED light bar under the back bumper for added visibility, twin whips on the back (just for looks). "Graphics" on the front, back, and sides. 4 brand new tires, fresh oil, new fuel pump, fresh coolant. Red interior lights, all signals, and other lights replaced.

They want to do a TON more work to it, like bars over the windows (police theme), more black paint (doors/fenders), add our unit logo (doors), more red lights inside, a sunroof, hood scoop, big old spoiler in the back, and anything else they can find.

So, does anyone have or have access to some BIG sub woofers and maybe an amp? How about a musical horn? A PA system? A LOT of window tint? Maybe a CB? Some fuzzy dice? Seat covers? Steering wheel ball? ANYTHING!!! If you guys can find it, we will find a way to install it!!! We have a good start on this crazy lookin "police van" but it needs to be insane!

Help us and be part of the madness! Of course, I will keep everyone updated with pictures.

I'll tell you, the guys are loving this project. Not only because it provides us with decent transportation (something we have been VERY lacking of) but because its OURS to do what we want with. May as well have some fun in our down time!

Thanks in advance guys,

Posted by lmopar69 | Sep 04, 2010 @ 01:02 AM | 15,302 Views
Hey guys, decided to clear out some space before I get home so I can do up my new 73" SBACH from Redwing RC. Anyone looking for a 12' or 6' RX ready Telemaster?

Here is a link.


Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 31, 2010 @ 02:34 PM | 14,335 Views
So, as some of you have noticed, I have been kinda absent lately. I come on here at least twice a day, but usually only for a minute or two to check whats goin on, then off to work. The good news is Im getting a lot of flight time in, the bad news is, some days its a 0300 wake up, 7 hours of flying, recover the aircraft, sleep for awhile then do it all over again.

Other days, like today, I spend 5 hours on the flightline fixing commo equipment in all our helicopters, then go fly for 2 hours, recover the aircraft, sleep for a bit then do it all again the next day.

I got to fly one of our new HZ Champs the other day for a bit inside an empty hangar, man those things are awesome! I also had a couple hours of off time (when I should have been sleeping) so I went to the rc track and raced my two trucks for a bit. I destroyed the transmission on my Losi Strike (while beating 3 brushless Emaxx and Revos) because my Castle Mamba 5700 is just tooooo powerful. So, then I beat them in a couple races with my Stampede. It has a Castle Mamba 4600 in it. Last lap of the last race I ripped the rear A arm off! Too fun. Had a great time out there though. Wish I had more play time, but, we have a job to do.

Anyway, more to follow when I have time. Hopefully some pictures too.

Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 27, 2010 @ 02:19 AM | 13,831 Views
Here is part 2 of our week at another FOB with the Medevac guys. I LOVE flying with them.

Dustoff Part 2 (3 min 41 sec)

Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 19, 2010 @ 09:49 PM | 14,185 Views
We had a NATO reporter named Josh Fortune with us last week while we were supporting the Medevac. Here is part 1 of his story. Im only in the first minute, but its a great video!

Dustoff part1-Lifesavers (3 min 56 sec)

Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 17, 2010 @ 02:19 AM | 13,510 Views
Hey guys/gals. I kinda been gone for a bit. I got sent out to one of the outlying FOBs (Forward Operating Base) to do Medevac Chase. We provide security, escort and casualty evac for our Med guys. Only flew 16.5 hours in a week, but if the Med dosnt fly much, thats a GOOD thing!

Had a good time out there, helped a lot of people, met some great guys from the Louisiana National Guard and still got to fly some.

We also had a NATO reporter/camera guy with us for the week named Josh. Awesome fella and man he does nice work!

Here is a picture of our crew we had out there for the week.

Posted by lmopar69 | Aug 03, 2010 @ 07:40 AM | 14,635 Views
I have been on night QRF (quick reaction force) for the last 5 days or so. Well, we all know if you give me time to sit around I'll build something! So, I decided I needed an IFO type plane.

I borrowed some carbon rod, secured it all with parachute cord and CA. I covered it with a chunk of a 100' parachute that I "liberated". For control surfaces, I had to come up with something since I had no more carbon rod left. I saw some choroplast "no smoking" signs that looked like they were tired of just hangin around. A few minutes later, I had rudder and elevons also covered in parachute.

For power, it has a Hacker A20, 10x4.7 prop and a 3S 1320 lipo, 3 BMS metal gear servos will 550 cord pull pull on all surfaces.

Initially I had the frame covered all the way to the nose. I went for a few test flights and the dang thing would NOT turn!!! I tried to move the CG all around, still nothing. I decided maybe I should check the IFO thread here on RCG and I saw one common denominator with all of the IFO's, they had an open space in the front (usually where the motor was). So, I put some braces in and cut out the front. Flies like a champ now! Although still just a tad nose heavy. It sure would make my life easy if I would use proven designs or look at plans before I build something. But, that takes most of the fun out of it for me. I like to try, try, try before I go looking for help.

Its about 34" in span and pretty close to the same in length. The broken prop in the pictures will give you a hint that its a little too big, fast and heavy to fly inside one of our hangars! But, when you build something out of "whats available" you have to make weight concessions. It aint light, but it does fly!

I have some more carbon rod on order now thanks to Lee Ulinger at www.leeulingermodels.com. Should be here in a week or two. Maybe I'll get some time to try some other new (to me) projects.

Posted by lmopar69 | Jul 25, 2010 @ 10:14 AM | 14,972 Views
Here is a quick video of the Lee Ulinger Edge 540 over here in Kandahar.

EDGE (4 min 51 sec)

And here is one of the Vapor flying indoors over here in a gym.

Vapor (3 min 38 sec)
...Continue Reading