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Posted by Jak35 | Dec 06, 2016 @ 02:47 PM | 1,693 Views
Forgot to blog anything in 2015, but have to admit that I have at least acquired a Taranis transmitter last December (2015), because of the lockouts I encountered on the Spektrum DX6i in front of the micro wave towers in Hermanus. I loaded the old EPP Impala with 4 new double A batteries and went up the mountain again and proved that the Taranis outperformed my Spektrum. I flew in front of the microwave tower with no interference or lockouts! Went home satisfied and stashed the Impala and Taranis in my office.

A few days ago, I realised that it is a year later and time for the the Hermanus Slope Fest again. I topped up the Taranis with a 4 hour charge and grabbed the Impala (with the same AA batteries) and headed for Hermanus!

I arrived on the mountain in Hermanus on the Friday afternoon and met with all the fimaliar faces. After some chit-chat I decided to switch on and launch! Can't remember what all the knobs and switches were for, but the control surfaces tests showed that everything is moving in the correct direction!

LAUNCHING!....and off it went! Like riding a bicycle! Nothing wrong with the AA's! As promised on the packaging...they geniunely have a shelf life!

Then came the request for a close flyby for the camera!....and who can resist...!?

Approach was good, judgment....hmmm slightly too good....aided by a little air bubble....aiming straight for the pilot...then Tuck & Roll, but don't drop the Taranis!!! Slipped, fell, but kept flying! Luckily, cameraman, Sean, was there to capture the moment.

Now that is what slope soaring is all about!

What a blast!!! Till next year...


...and here's the vid...somewhere around 2:15

HERMANUS 2016 DAY 2 (3 min 26 sec)

Posted by Jak35 | Dec 04, 2014 @ 02:27 PM | 4,570 Views
Here's a short video of Martin Venn's quarter scale Aermacchi MB-326 (Impala), Hans van Kamp's giant scale T33 and Kevin Farr's ASW at the yearly AFC Hermanus Slope Fest.

It was once again a GREAT weekend of sloping with good friends from all over. Thanks to the organisers from the Atlantic Flying Club!


Large Scale Slope Soaring @ Hermanus 2014 (3 min 35 sec)

Posted by Jak35 | Mar 25, 2014 @ 12:51 PM | 5,113 Views
Here's a short video clip of some sloping a few weekends ago at Signal Hill, Cape Town.

I managed to save yet again, a few pieces of "stable" footage that my son shot and slapped it together with iMovie on the iPad.

It was a great day and the lift was fantastic!

Slope Soaring @ Signal Hill (3 min 20 sec)

Posted by Jak35 | Feb 04, 2014 @ 03:39 PM | 5,723 Views
Finally I have upgraded to a HD video camera and had the oppurtunity to test it on the slope a few weekends ago. After the weekend's sloping, I found it was quite challenging to keep the planes in the camera's sight and that the autofocus did it's own thing and realised that the focus has to be set to manual and infinity the next time round. So much for artificial intelligence (AI)

I have managed to save a few clips here and there and then painstakingly edited all the HD clips in iMovie on the iPad 2.

Dispite all the quirks, we had a blast on the slope and now we can watch it over and over again.

Here's the final result:

Slope till you drop ! (5 min 0 sec)

P.S. ....next present to myself....Macbook Pro + GoPro4 (I wish!)
Posted by Jak35 | Dec 20, 2013 @ 06:37 AM | 5,961 Views
Its December holidays again and its time for a quick project to satisfy the build itch. So I decided to go for a quick build/no-glue kit from Italeri of Leonardo da Vinci's ornithopter. Its a wind-up and the wings flap too!

He experimented with flapping wings and realised that man's muscle power is inadequate to propel the wings, so in his later designs he used stationary wings. What a genius he was for his time...

Next project.....Bob Hoey's turkey vulture! Hmmm....maybe leave it for a winter project.
Posted by Jak35 | Dec 01, 2012 @ 03:02 AM | 9,404 Views
I always wanted to make a 3D CAD model of my favorite plane, but never took the time to do it. At the time when I have built my first Impala, I could only find a very small 3-view drawing on the web. Later, on a business trip to the USA, I stumbled upon a book about the Aermacchi MB-326 which contains some scale drawings.

I have finally started with drawing the formers and the side view. The idea of this exercise is to get to know Rhino CAD a bit better and maybe play with CNC at a later stage. So this might be a long project.

The formers have been drawn in Corel draw and will be exported to Rhino CAD for further modeling. As I find more time and hopefully progress, I will update this post with some more pics.

So for now, those of you who would like to build one from Correx or make a 3D model for a simulator, below is the formers file for download. If you require it in Autocad DXF format, please sent me a PM. I can export up to version 14.

1st update.... 13/12/2012

I found that it is fairly easy to trace the curves in Rhino and that there is really no need to use Corel draw. I think the trick is first to get to know what to snap to when aligning the curves and stringers. Then plan as how you are going to construct the model. Don't try and do it all at once. I'm currently busy playing around with the surfacing. Could'nt wait to render. I can see many more hours of trial and error!

I have added another pic of my progress...

2nd Update.... 23/...Continue Reading
Posted by Jak35 | May 09, 2012 @ 03:57 PM | 9,144 Views
...about my favourite slope plane.

Since childhood, I was fascinated with the Impala (Aermacchi MB326), which was used by the South African Air Force Aerobatics team, called the Silver Falcons. The Impala was used for aerobatic displays and formation flying since 1967 and was later replaced with the Pilatus PC-7 MkII Astra, with their new colour scheme, in 1999. Impala 460 was the first of a batch of 16 aircraft that was assembled locally at the Ysterplaat Air Force Base, Cape Town, in 1966.

I had the privilege to visit the Ysterplaat museum to take a few photos for my first slope version (1.2m wingspan), made from Expanded Polyethylene (EPE). EPE is almost indestructible and a bit on the heavy side, but was the only material of its kind available locally, before EPP appeared.

My first slope Impala, with its heavy wing loading, really taught me to fly and has since been retired. I then acquired the fiberglass version (1.3m wingspan) from AB Models. Thereafter EPP became available and I asked Anton Benning from AB Models to cut me an 1.2m wingspan version, like the first one I had. I decorated it with the new Silver Falcons colour scheme. (The Old & The New in one )

With a much lighter wing loading than my first Impala, this one flies great!!! I still fly it today, but it needs a bit of attention, because it was pushed beyond its limits a couple of times.

More information on the Silver Falcons can be found here: http://www.silverfalcons.co.za

Here are a few photos of the old and the new.
Posted by Jak35 | May 01, 2012 @ 02:21 PM | 8,479 Views
On a scenic drive today with the family, I managed to stop at Signal Hill and sneaked in a few circles with the Alula, that just happened to be in the trunk of my car. What a great little flier, its one of those "must have's" and don't leave home without it!
Posted by Jak35 | Apr 23, 2012 @ 04:26 AM | 8,948 Views
Here is a video of some slope aerobatics with the Aermacchi MB339 at Signal Hill. It was filmed by Jan Griesel with his GoPro and I quickly edited it on the iPad. So, best to watch in HD, if your computer/bandwidth allows, because the GoPro unfortunately does not have any zoom.

MB339 Slope Aerobatics @ Signal Hill - Cape Town (3 min 41 sec)

Posted by Jak35 | Apr 18, 2012 @ 01:09 PM | 8,908 Views
We went to Signal Hill, late last Saturday afternoon, after a bit of slope hunting in search of good lift. I ended up having an absolute blast flying my EPP Aermacchi MB339 in a 30km/h WSW wind. Photos courtesy of Jan Griesel with his GoPro HD Hero 2.
Posted by Jak35 | Apr 10, 2012 @ 03:49 AM | 9,174 Views
Here's a GoPro video that was taken on-board Anton Benning's Aermacchi 339 while chasing my Impala (Aermacchi MB326) over Sea Point at Signal Hill, Cape Town. In the footage you will see our flying site with a glimpse of Table Mountain and Lion's head in the background. The GoPro was kindly lent to us by Clowns Hobbies.

Sloping @ Signal Hill - Cape Town (4 min 17 sec)

Posted by Jak35 | Mar 06, 2012 @ 03:27 AM | 9,363 Views
The Parkzone UM T28 Trojan is an absolute "must-have" for those beautiful days where there are almost no wind to slope.

It flies like a trainer and you can do some aerobatics too. The best of all, is you can fly it right in-front of your house! (or even in the backyard, if you have one. )

And 4 1S Lipos are plenty to get your fix.

Now, I'm actually after its bigger brother, which tolerates a bit more wind.
Posted by Jak35 | Feb 14, 2012 @ 10:36 AM | 10,410 Views
The ABModels Aermacchi MB 339 is the latest addition to the fleet. The maiden was done at the AFC Hermanus Slope Fly event in November 2011. It took many late nights to try and finish this kit in time for the event. The scratchbuilt cockpit was not finished in time, but was finished at a later stage. The Italian Frecce Tricolori was the chosen colour scheme and took some effort to get it "right", especially around the curved surfaces.

Wingspan: 1.6m
AUW: 2.6kg
Posted by Jak35 | Feb 08, 2012 @ 12:27 PM | 10,474 Views
My 3m Ventus had its maiden flight two weekends ago at the Hoogekraal slope, just outside Cape Town. It flies like a dream and looks great in the air!

Pity about the landing, which calls for canopy and nose repairs. (Note to self: plan, plan, plan your landing and don't get distracted!)

Here's some pics that Cagecat took.
Posted by Jak35 | Feb 08, 2012 @ 06:27 AM | 10,395 Views
The Windrider Bee 2 is a recent addition to the fleet. I never really wanted one, until I saw how much fun the guys had while engaging in combat. Loads of fun!

It cuts through the air nicely and flies really well.

The design was inspired by the movie "TRON legacy".
Posted by Jak35 | Feb 07, 2012 @ 03:19 PM | 10,352 Views
I had a few requests for this Alula's colour scheme, so here it is.

This stencil has been scaled to fit the standard Alula, but you can still scale to your required size if necessary.

I have printed it on plain paper, it was then cut out and laminated. The stencil was then applied to the Alula with stencil glue that you can buy at your local art shop. I then used Tamiya Black spray paint and voila!

Please post a pic of your Alula, it will be interesting to know where in the world this bird flies.

Posted by Jak35 | Dec 14, 2011 @ 01:17 PM | 10,707 Views
The Dreamflight Alula is one of the best toys I have bought, lots of fun soaring with birds in light lift conditions.

Depending on the season, evasive maneuvers might be required.

It really flies fantastically!

Posted by Jak35 | Dec 08, 2011 @ 05:04 AM | 10,096 Views
EPP Impala (Aermacchi MB-326)
Wing span 1.2m
AUW 1.1 kg

Loads of fun!