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Sep 07, 2016, 12:48 PM
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R/C Diary Pt. 27 “ 27th Annual Big Bird Bash!”

Sep 8/16:
The weather was damn near perfect for our 27th Annual Big Bird Bash held at our SOGGI flying field, located south of Hamilton, Ontario. I don’t think you could ask for better conditions if you tried!

I arrived at the field around 8:30 am and was surprised to find the Contest Director, Dick C and the President, Bob H. already hard a work setting up for the event! Now that’s dedication! The only requirement for the contest was that the plane must be at least 100” wing span.

The turnout (7) wasn’t quite as good as previous years where we have had as many as 24 contestants. Normally, its a “man on man” type of contest but today due to the lower number of participants, the powers to be decided to turn this into a fun fly with the trophy going to whoever logs the longest duration flight.

Even though I didn’t have anything big enough to fly, I brought my 7/8” rubber hi-start with me. First we laid out the President’s hi-start which has been shortened to meet the requirements of our new field. Then we anchored mine right beside it to come up with the matching length. I have 105’ of rubber and now about 300’ of line. We then “dialed in” about 300% stretch on the line and brought that to the flight line and temporarily staked it down ready to be used. That amount of stretch is really the max for the lines and produces about 4-5 x the weight of the planes in pulling effort. So for the larger, heavier 3.5 M planes I reckoned we had about 18-20 lbs of pull! Yikes! Everyone who used it said it was set up perfectly, so that made me feel good!

The lift was phenomenal! President Bob reported that his Supra 3.5 M hit 1,200’ which is the limit we can go as we are located fairly close to the airport. At one time there about five or six sailplanes in one kettle, all of them ascending at an amazing rate! Quite the sight!

I couldn't stay until the end so I haven't been able to determine who took top honours. Two things I learned……a 3.5 M sailplane may look large on the ground but at 1,200 feet…..I could barely make it out! The second thing is I think this thermal flying thing was invented by a chiropractor as evidenced by the picture with all the pilots standing with their heads tilted back trying to maintain a visual on their planes! Can you say…..a stiff neck? : )

All in all, a perfect r/c sailplane flying day!


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