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May 25, 2017, 06:27 PM
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Knoll53's Avatar
I'm kinda surprised that is climbs so well when on tow with a tow hook so far forward. My tow hooks are just in front of the cg by a 45 degree angle.

That plank carves some nice turns.
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May 25, 2017, 07:56 PM
Herk
HerkS's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knoll53
I'm kinda surprised that is climbs so well when on tow with a tow hook so far forward. My tow hooks are just in front of the cg by a 45 degree angle. .
I wonder if that's why you have sometimes experienced that short term pitch-up at release.

That's the plank that was using drag rudders - it did handle very well with them.
May 25, 2017, 08:22 PM
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Knoll53's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by HerkS
I wonder if that's why you have sometimes experienced that short term pitch-up at release.
That is certainly the reason. Also having the tow hook way below the CG on a deep fuse. I remember when I started pushing the tow hook back. It was when I started launching in Big Sur with all of brush and uneven ground. I wanted to get above those wing tip grabbers as soon as possible. Amazingly, those wild nose up rotations upon release have never caused a problem. It just flys out of it ever time. If you look really closely, you can see a slight rotation upon release of this forward swept wing.
May 27, 2017, 07:34 PM
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It's a bit windy outside. My little home weather station says that its blowing about 25-30 knots from the west. In my backyard, there is nothing large in this direction for a kilometre or few and so the wind, even though strong is reasonably consistent.

So, the Calliope first felt real airflow across her surfaces today. While I didn't let go of it, there was enough feedback to indicate that the basic pitch trim was near were it should be, the controls all worked ( and the elevator didn't seem too savage) and the aeroplane was stable in yaw.

The next step will be a real flight from a zip start ( after I install the launch peg) when the wind decreases ( I'd like maybe 5-10 knots please) and my courage increases.

Carolyn
May 29, 2017, 06:21 AM
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EdSoars's Avatar
At 25-30 knots, you could hold Calliope overhead, let go, and walk out from under her as she slowly settles to the ground.

Just a thought.
May 29, 2017, 07:28 PM
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Hi Ed,

When I was standing there in a freezing breeze ( gale) with a funny looking flying wing squirming around in my hand desperate to be free, the thought of just letting go was certainly strong in my mind. While it didn't seem to have either a strong pitch up or pitch down tendency in my hand, the thought that it might soon be going upward and then rapidly dissappearing downwind made me hang on tightly.

They say patience is rewarded.....

Carolyn
May 29, 2017, 09:03 PM
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EdSoars's Avatar
Many patients should be rewarded!

Ed
May 31, 2017, 07:48 PM
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Flight report:

Well, It flies!

It launched , it flew very nicely and landed comfortably and without damage.

Before I go into more detail, a few apologies:

1. There is no video. Sorry. But, the whole flight is etched permanently on my memory along with all of my other first flights. Now that I know that the Calliope is not going to bite me immediately I might start thinking in a video direction.... But no promises!!! Hussle, I did promise to bring the Calliope to Sydney to show Tim some time soon, so perhaps you might like to be there too?

2. The Aerofoil works and is stable without applying up elevator trim. I know that there was a modicum of concern about this from CmO plots, but data beats theory every time..... Sorry.

OK now a few details:

It was calm, cold (2C) and lovely and sunny. The Calliope had been checked, the CG set about 4mm ahead of where I thought it would end up and everything charged last night. So after a calming cup of tea and a check flight with the Little Plank to get my thumbs working, it was time to string out the zip-start. Switch on, control check, range check and motor check. Hook on to the zip start, being very careful not to bump the throttle with a live aeroplane in my hand. A moderate stretch and absolutely no excuses coming to mind meant thatI had to let it free....

The launch rose gently with wings level and released with a nice surplus of speed in hand. A little up elevator was needed to keep the nose up courtesy of the forward CG. Motor on and shortly thereafter a little aileron to start a turn showed a gentle climb and positive lateral control and good coordination with the small amount of rudder mixed in ( about 20degrees at full aileron). The ailerons, with no differential, showed no apparent pitch effect. Elevator was about like a soft F3J sailplane, and slowing up at altitude showed that there was insufficient elevator to stall the aircraft, though the characteristic nod as the elevator unloaded further indicated the forward CG.

Speeding up, with the elevator faired with the aerofoil, showed a very fast glide / dive that did not diverge. I think that a few grams of lead being removed will be the first step in further trimming... At speed, the Calliope was also stable and flew straight without any tail wagging, indicating adequate yaw stability. Turning performance showed a comfortable and linear roll response and a happy tendency to hold a bank angle up to the maximum of about 70 degrees tried.

Wingtips wobble encouragingly as I passed through a thermal marked by the swallows. But first flights are not the time to play!

Up to altitude to try the airbrakes: half brakes had a rather mild effect, but full brakes was much more marked with the aeroplane slowing and pitching up slightly and the angle of descent increasing markedly. Because I have not as yet mixed in elevator compensation with the brakes I made a mental note not to slow up too much on approach before opening the brakes...

Some low passes showed a pleasantly flat glide and a quiet airframe. I also really liked the way it looks in the air! Cruising around with the slightly nose down 'sit' I had designed in looked really wonderful. I am now a happy camper, but with an aeroplane still to land.

A wide approach opening the brakes to full before turning towards home. Holding a little down elevator to balance the brakes and releasing it in part to flare, produced a comfortably slow landing. The 'high heel' kept the nose firmly on the ground after touchdown and the zip start peg on the belly acted as an anchor bringing the Calliope to a quick halt in a straight line.

I'm not saying that I was giggling as I walked over to the aeroplane after such a pleasant 15 minute first flight, but I was certainly smiling a lot!

Well, I guess there is little more for me to say. Should you have any questions or comments I would be happy to keep chatting, but in their absence I am happy to say that a "Moderately high AR Plank flying wing" called Calliope has thoroughly pleased her mother..

Carolyn
May 31, 2017, 09:11 PM
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Hussle's Avatar
Congratulations on a successful maiden! Looking forward to further flight reports

Where do you plan on flying in Sydney? If I'm available I'd love to come and see the Calliope in person. Happy to take some video as well.

Hussle
Jun 01, 2017, 06:02 AM
Herk
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Beautiful Carolyn - a real work of art - designed by you, but shaped by the wind. If my arms were realllllly long I'd give you a hug -- Herk
Jun 01, 2017, 08:18 AM
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What Herk said. Truly a fine effort and result! Can't wait for video coverage!
ed
Jun 01, 2017, 02:16 PM
Donate Platelets
Congratulations Carolyn.


Jim
Jun 01, 2017, 11:09 PM
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Thank you all for your thoughts. I particularly appreciate Herk's intercontinental hug, and not only because it was -7degrees C here this morning!

I shall now be checking over the Calliope to see that nothing is amiss, and then moving the CG aft by 1 or 2 mm before the next flight. It is also now time to give my building area a good clean up before starting another project. ( For something completely different, I saw a picture of a thing called a biconic wave-rider which could be fun...)

Hussle, the trip to Sydney is not yet organised, but will probably happen on a Sunday in the next month or so, to Wahroonga. I shall PM you when I know more.

Carolyn
Jun 13, 2017, 01:48 AM
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Things what I have learned:

The Calliope has flown 6 times now and the CG has come back to about 1mm ahead of the design position. It has become much more floaty and cruises around the sky very nicely. Thermalling happens easily and the general handling is very conventional. With a little down trim it speeds up and heads for the horizon. All very nice.....

The split rudder is very effective. At full deflection (about 30 degrees each side) it functions like a cross between flaps and spoilers, both slowing the aircraft and reducing the glide angle substantially..... while the Calliope was nose heavy and hence travelling faster, the slowing effect wasn't that noticeable, but as the CG came back and the aircraft slowed down it became possible to rapidly slow the aircraft to below flying speed before down elevator could have any effect..... Luckily (!) I discovered this by opening the brakes from half to full on a slow final approach about 2m up..

I have also learned that my custom spinner is very strong and that the Calliope is quite strong too. The only damage from a 2m high lawn dart type arrival was pushing the motor mount backwards and me rediscovering words I hadn't used in quite some years.

Carolyn
Jun 20, 2017, 05:39 AM
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Looks good


A nice day today once the fog lifted.

Here are a few photos of the Calliope in flight. The Calliope looks stunning in flight, entering and exiting turns just perfectly.

I have some video that I will post once I assemble the parts that are usable....

Tim

Note to self: next time remember to stop down to retain detail on white objects.
Last edited by TugBoat; Jun 20, 2017 at 06:09 AM.


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