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May 09, 2014, 12:25 AM
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A History of the Torrey Pines Gliderport, May 14th, 2014

Come to our next South Bay Soaring Society program featuring author Gary Fogel.

As "Air Capital of the West," San Diego boasts a rich history in aviation that began with glider flights by John J. Montgomery in the 1880s. By the 1930s, gliding experienced a renaissance as an inexpensive means to take to the skies. Gliderports dotted the West Coast with pilots testing their designs in the prevailing sea breeze. Locations such as Torrey Pines attracted pilots from all over the nation for their idyllic conditions, where humans could soar with birds over the sea. These early pioneers helped define soaring as a sport and left an indelible mark on American aviation. Of the coastal gliderports of the 1930s, only one remains today the Torrey Pines Gliderport an aviation landmark that has become famous around the world with aviators who share this unique resource through multiple forms of motorless flight.

This will start sometime after 7:30pm at the Saratoga Fire Station, 14380 Saratoga Ave., in Saratoga after our regular South Bay Soaring Society business meeting. Visitors are welcome.

Gary is the author of The Torrey Pines Gliderport, a new book released by Arcadia Publishing He also spoke to us recently on his co-authored biography of John Montgomery

Gary has written extensively on the history of gliding flight and was instrumental in preserving the Torrey Pines Gliderport in San Diego with historical designations at the City, State, and Federal levels. An avid RC soaring enthusiast, Gary also helped establish AMA's National Aeromodeling Heritage Program, preserving America's aeromodeling sites for future generations. Gary has also set several national and world records for models, and has written for magazines such as Quiet Flyer, RC Sport Flyer, and Soaring. He is a Leader Member and Contest Director of the AMA, and Historian for the Torrey Pines Gulls.

See You There, Kyle

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May 24, 2014, 12:09 PM
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Special Time, Place and Special SBSS Program Featuring World Class Expert Philip Kolb

We will be having an informal and interactive discussion with one of model soaring’s great designers and competitors. Coming from Osijek, Croatia to meet with some of his friends and associates in the Bay area, we were able to book him exactly 1 week before our normal meeting. Anyone can come to our June 6/4/14 meeting which will start at 6:30pm for the business meeting and then at 7:30pm Philip will begin is discussion on:

Improving Sailplane Performance - Philip wants to introduce some new ideas to help our flying including setup, practicing, strategy, thermal soaring, and competition psychology.

Model Sailplane Design – he is a one of the world’s great model sailplane designers and among is planes is the famous Pike Perfect. He will touch on this subject as it relates to improving our sailplane flying performance, like choosing the right design for you.

We will be meeting at the Campbell Community Center in the Roosevelt Redwood Room, One W. Campbell Ave., Campbell, CA 95008. We are also planning a way listen in remotely, instructions will follow.

See you there, Kyle.
May 27, 2014, 08:51 PM
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SBSS Program Featuring World Class Expert Philip Kolb

1. Please join my meeting, Jun 4, 2014 at 7:30 PM PDT.

2. You will be connected to audio using your computer's microphone and speakers (VoIP). A headset is recommended.

Meeting ID: 493-149-021

Online Meetings Made Easy®

Not at your computer? Click the link to join this meeting from your iPhone®, iPad®, Android® or Windows Phone® device via the GoToMeeting app. Sorry only the first 25 can join in.


Jun 03, 2014, 12:09 AM
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Great Ready for Wednesday Night. We will have a 2nd GoToMeeting Channel so stay tune for how to get on that, if the first one fills up.
Jun 03, 2014, 12:10 AM
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S B S S June 4th Meeting with Philip Kolb


1. Please join my meeting, Wednesday, June 04, 2014 7:30 PM Pacific Daylight Time.

2. Use your microphone and speakers (VoIP) - a headset is recommended.
......Or, Call in using your telephone.

......United States: +1 (646) 982-0002

Access Code: 408-470-293
Audio PIN: Shown after joining the meeting

Meeting ID: 408-470-293


Not at your computer? Click the link to join this meeting from your iPhone®,

iPad®, Android® or Windows Phone® device via the GoToMeeting app.

Sorry, I can only handle 25 connections for this meeting.


Randy Shore

[email protected]

Last edited by DSX; Jun 03, 2014 at 01:44 AM.
Jul 03, 2014, 09:08 AM
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Francesco Explores the World of Flight Measurement

Francesco is another expert at the South Bay Soaring Society that has been keeping a low profile. He did surface however, to work with Randy to organize Philip Kolb's great talk last month. Afterwards I have found out that Francesco is tuned into an advanced level of our hobby in the US and Europe. Francesco was one of the developers of the XFLR5 software that performs aerodynamic simulation. However, even with the best simulation, Francesco has also built advance skills in data logging and telemetry.

On Wednesday night, 7/9/14 at 7:30pm at the main Saratoga Fire Station (club discussion at 6:30pm), Francesco will be speaking about how to use data logging and telemetry to tune your model, improve your launching and to improve your flying. He will also talk about some of his original research in this area including his own 3-axis acceleration logger that compliments the more conventional data logging and telemetry tools. You won't want to miss this talk, since don't want t be left behind as electronics become an every bigger part of our hobby, especially the part the keeps beating you at contests.

Everyone's welcome even non-members and hopefully Francesco will let up post this talk on our YouTube channel

Hope to See There,


Aug 09, 2014, 07:52 PM
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Big Gliders vs. Model Gliders

South Bay Soaring Society next program is a panel on real gliders at our Wednesday 8/13/14 meeting at 7:30pm (business meeting is at 6:30pm) at the Saratoga Main Fire Station. Everyone is welcome to join us to hear Rich, Walt and Eric discuss their experience with real glides and why they are temporarily or permanently grounded. Topics covered will be:

What They flew
Photos of their famous/infamous planes
What was good and bad about the gliders they flew
Photos of their days soaring
YouTube videos to be shown if short and links will be shared

Where They flew
Great glider ports of Norther California and beyond
Where did they land?

How They Learned
How would they recommend getting into it today
How many hours to get proficient

Advantages of Gliding
Including what is good just going for a glider ride

Challenges with Gliding
Air sickness

Future of Gliding
Predictions on where the sport is going

What They Learned That Helps with Model Gliding
Rudder control
Control services
See You Next Wednesday!

Big Gliders vs. Model Gliders (47 min 14 sec)
Last edited by Throwbot; Aug 16, 2016 at 03:30 PM.
Aug 29, 2014, 11:12 PM
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Chief Designer of Red Bull's Flugtag World Record Glider Flight

New world record flight at Red Bull Flugtag Long Beach 2013 (1 min 33 sec)

At the next South Bay Soaring Society Program, all are invited to hear Bob Parks tell the story behind this historic flight.

The vast majority of contraptions in the Red Bull Flugtag competition find creative ways to leap off the pier and plunge into the water. However, an occasional design seems to just float across the waters. Such was the case on September 21, when a Mountain View-based team, the Chicken Whisperers, set a Flugtag world record of 258 feet.

It helps that they are a team of engineers devoted to a new generation of aircraft design. But in this case, they do it in such an entertaining way.

Bob Parks was chief designer for the Chicken Whisperers team for Red Bull FlugTag Long Beach 2013. The team won the event and set new Flugtag world record for distance. He is also an engineer at an aerospace start-up in Mountain View.

Prior to that, he was chief designer for Aurora Flight Sciences, working on the concept and configuration design on nearly all indigenous Aurora aircraft since 2002. These include the LH2 Orion, Boeing LH2 HALE, demonstrators for the ARES Mars airplane, Excaliber hybrid, VTOL UAV, Odysseus Z wing solar powered aircraft, GoldenEye 100, 50, and 80/OAVII VTOL ducted fan aircraft, DARPA submersible aircraft (manned and UAV/USV), and DARPA Transformer flying car.

In the 1980s, he was a designer for a couple of very different aircraft. One was the MIT Daedalus human-powered aircraft. The other was the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk stealth fighter.

Robert (Bob) Parks is an Associate Fellow of AIAA.

With a bit of luck, anther member of the Chicken Whispers team may show up to erh...hen him a little support.

For those who want to research available material before the talk, here are some resources:

See you at 9/10/14 at the main Saratoga Fire Station, starting a bit after 7:30pm. The general meeting start at 6:30pm and anyone is welcome to join either. We are nuts about gliders, but with this stunt, Bob to a whole new level.

Chief Designer of Red Bull's Flugtag World Record Glider Flight (1 hr 15 min 38 sec)
Last edited by Throwbot; Aug 18, 2016 at 12:30 AM.
Aug 29, 2014, 11:59 PM
that's gonna hurt...
Kyle ...... don't know how you do it over and over again ........ best entertainment guru evvvverrr!!!!

Sep 29, 2014, 11:43 PM
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The DaSH Project -- building a 'Simple' human powered airplane

Come hear South Bay Soaring Society’s next program is at 7:30pm 10/8/14 at the main Saratoga Fire Station. This is open to any one interested, hope to see you there - Kyle

The DaSH PA project stands for "Dead Simple Human Powered Airplane", The idea: to take as efficient an approach as possible to building an human powered aircraft that flies successfully. It’s a project started by a group of engineers just for the fun of it, so we can learn while designing and building something challenging, fun and a little bit out there.

This talk will begin by discussing the motivation for the project, followed by a dive into the surprisingly extensive history of human powered flight. Then we'll talk about the design process for the airplane, the engineering challenges, and the final specifications we settled on. Finally, we'll talk a lot about the construction
techniques and how one goes about building an airplane that is half the weight of the pilot, but has a wingspan larger than a 737 jetliner.

Parts of the plane will be displayed and passed around so everyone can get a feel for the ultra lightweight construction techniques that must be used to make a successful human powered airplane.

The DaSH project blog is located at:

Alec Proudfoot of Proudfoot Design is currently Chief Designer on the DaSH human powered airplane project. He was the engineer at Google Inc. who started the RechargeIT plug-in vehicle project. At AeroVironment, he was a member of the engineering team that created the GM Impact prototype. The Impact entered production as the GM EV1, the first modern high power AC induction electric vehicle. Alec has followed the alternative fuel vehicle scene as an engineer, a consumer, and journalist -- some of his footage appeared in the documentary film "Who Killed the Electric Car."

In addition to his alternative fuel vehicle work, Alec has had a diverse engineering career, spanning fields from aviation to medical devices to telecommunications, and has also worked as a professional helicopter pilot. Most recently, Alec was a renewable energy engineer at Google working on the RE<C project, and previously worked as an engineering manager on imaging related applications for projects including Google Book Search and Google Maps. In his "20% time," Alec
advised, Google's philanthropic organization, on energy and transportation issues.

SBSS ➜ The DaSH Project ~ building a 'Simple' human powered airplane (1 hr 29 min 29 sec)
Last edited by Throwbot; Jun 06, 2016 at 04:57 PM.
Sep 30, 2014, 10:18 PM
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Update from John Giddings - Speaker on the John Montgomery Movie

John continues to do his terrific outreach work, this time with South Bay Soaring Society's own Noel Eberhardt. We continue to be tracking John and Veronica's progress in making their movie. I told him we would have to reserve an early showing so all of us glider nerds can make a big line at the theater. - Kyle

On Sep 22, 2014, at 5:08 PM, John Giddings wrote:

Hello Everyone,

Last Spring, Veronica Craven and I had a wonderful opportunity to present to a very special audience: The 5th Grade class of John J. Montgomery Elementary School in San Jose. The presentation was set up with Principal Hedwid Rucker and timed to launch their annual Science Fair. The 5th grade class was choosen because 10yo is when Montgomery saw the flight of the heavier than air Avator adn decided he wanted to fly.

With help from Noel Eberhardt of the South Bay Soaring Society, we developed an experiment for the students to do using balsa gliders after the short history presentation.

In addition to the satisfaction of seeing every single hand go up when I asked, "Who here has heard of John Montgomery?" it was great seeing the students enthusiasm and pride learning about their schools namesake.
After the experiments, there was a contest for the best distance per team so they were encouraged to learn from each other's experiments. Many of the planes were "experimented" to destruction, but it was interesting to see the students combine left over parts working together making Frankenstein planes -even using the plastic wrapper the planes came in.

Also fun to see was that although we had a formal process for launching the experiments in a line one by one, once they had thrown their experiment, the kids went behind the lines to make a skunk works with swarms of experiments running. Planes were getting stuck on roofs, trees and over fences which I proclained successful experiments.

The winner (his craftsmanship shows with all of the decorations he added himself) was thrilled.

But the best outcome of the session came in an email this month from one of the teachers. It seems they were so inspired by the event that she (while attending SCU's school of education, Dr. Margaret Lucero) developed a lesson module built around John Montgomery for common core tying together science, math, experimentation and history.

She has asked for some help from us to guide the students in the glider making/experimenting and judging a final demonstration session. If you have ideas or resources you'd like to offer her, please let me know.

My hope is that the module can be replicated at all of the elementary schools in Evergreen, and San Jose and then other schools around the country. Montgomery is a wonderful example of a kid getting an idea and fiddling around with it and making something pretty exciting.

Meanwhile, Veronica and I continue to refine the script for The Film and some test audience presentations indicate the story is pretty strong. Still working to improve it even more but soon we will have a registered screenplay and then go out for financing.

Thanks to everyone for your continued support. We alway love hearing from you!

John Giddings
EMGT373, Technology Entrepreneurship
Oct 06, 2014, 10:53 PM
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The DaSH Project -- building a 'Simple' human powered airplane

See you this Wednesday, see a description of this great program above.


Nov 09, 2014, 11:58 PM
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The Everyman Discuss Launch Glider – The Throwbot

SBSS ➜ The Everyman Discuss Launch Glider ~ The Throwbot (57 min 31 sec)

In a special end of year program, our program organizer, Kyle, will be presenting his ideas on a new type of glider that may someday fly as easily as kites or Frisbees. The ideas are still half-baked, so he will be looking to the club members and people in the blogosphere to contribute to these ideas in the coming years.
This Wednesday, November 12th, 2014 at the main Saratoga Fire Station at 7:30pm, Kyle will be giving a short talk on the Throwbot, and be soliciting ideas from the audience. Everyone is welcome and it they come early at 6:30pm they can even join our general business meeting.
We all know how difficult it is to fly and maintain a working glider, and DLG gliders are even harder than conventional winch or electric motor gliders. However, the thing that keeps changing is electronics and materials. Before too long technologies like GPS, gyros, altimeters, networks, open transmitter and receiver interfaces and smart phone interfaces will be affordable and with a little help from us, could make DLG gliders easy enough for every man, woman or child to give it a whirl. See you Wednesday.
Last edited by Throwbot; Apr 28, 2015 at 11:40 PM.
Dec 10, 2014, 10:49 PM
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Annual South Bay Soaring Society Hobby Supply Auction, Wednesday, 7:30pm January 14th

Happy holidays. Hopefully you got a ton of cool hobby supplies. But, it is probably time to recycle some of your untouched treasures from the last holiday.

Bring your excess hobby related items and make some ready cash. 10% of the final price goes to SBSS, but that is a small price to pay for all of us to get something you really want and that sometimes goes for a very good price. So dust off your stuff and bring it down. Be ready to give a short chat about it and that is our "Program" for the night. Our business meeting is at 6:30, so the auction probably won't start until at least 7:30. All are welcome, bring cash or checks to the Saratoga Fire Station and help keep the gift getting spirit alive a few weeks longer.

See You There,

Feb 10, 2015, 12:20 AM
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How To Buy Used Sailplane

Now on Our YouTube Channel
SBSS ➜ How To Buy A Used Sailplane (38 min 30 sec)

Come to our next meeting Wednesday7:30 (business meeting starts at 6:30pm), 2/11/15 at the Main Saratoga Fire Station and learn how to buy a used Sailplane. Anyone is welcomed. We are learning how buy used sailplanes to help on our next private sailplane auction coming up in a little over a week. The talk is being presented by Bruce who will cover the following.

BEST MODELS FROM 4+ YEARS AGO - as Philip Kolb said, if you are on a budget, buy a very good used plane from a few years back, rather than a cheap plane you can afford brand new. Here are some of the planes we may be discussing as Bruce & Bob's favorites
Full House - Supra, Xplorer, Pike Perfect, The Shadow, and the Espada
Scale - Pick your favorite real plane to model
Slope - Banana, Bird, Destiny, Nyx Trinity
Polyhedral - Ava, Oly II, Paragon
DLG - Longshot, Predator, Blaster

What would you expect to pay
Where would you buy it (other than our private auction)
How would you inspect it
How might you get ripped off

What should you always replace
What do you inspect before replacing
What is unlikely to need replacing

What can go wrong with a used plane?
Check list before flying
What to look for in a test flight
Basic steps for trimming
When you would you get an expert to test fly

See you Wednesday night.


PS: If you miss the meeting, hopefully you will see our YouTube video of it soon.
Last edited by Throwbot; Aug 06, 2015 at 12:32 PM.

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