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Nov 03, 2004, 02:02 PM
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How to get started in DLG


I am new to this group. I have flown electric warbirds, wings, and foamy hover planes for two years now. I will pick up an used Avenger DLG this weekend. I am looking for the "how to get started in DLG". I have read the sticky on intro to HLG at the start of the thread listings. There are a lot of good links there, but no "what are the startup problems of DLG" type of issues. I have an EVO 9 so my Tx should not be a limitation.

Some questions in particular are:

1) what do you look for in a DLG craft as a beginner? What wing area, what control surfaces, what linkages, what wing shapes, etc.

2) how do you repair a DLG? What type of tape/fiberglass/CA/epoxy? What do you want to avoid (aside from adding weight).

3) do you put LiPoly in DLG? or is it strictly a NiMh club?

4) should you start with FLIGHT PHASES at the beginning? ( I use them on my warbirds and wings all the time). I have read that LAUNCH, THERMAL, and LAND are needed...what am I trying to setup for each of these cases?

5) some people with EVOs shift the elevator over to the left throttle stick during LAUNCH and then in THERMAL and LAND put it back to the normal right stick postion. Why do they need to do this? Should I start off with this condition?

6) the DLG links show that "dead air time" and "launch altitude" are the big metrics to acheive. What are these metrics and how do you start a learning path to get the maximum for these metrics?

7) What are the "tasks" that DLG flyers are given during competition? How do they make you a better flyer?

Sorry these questions are so basic. I could not find any "DLG for dummies" on the various links.....so I would assume that there are no dummies in the DLG community. LOL. Any help will be appreciated.
Crazy Ted -- a battery junkie (who is beginning to think that motors are 'over-reved' and 'over-rated')
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Nov 03, 2004, 02:59 PM
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averen's Avatar
Welcome to the group...DLGs are fun

So...here are some answers, hopefully they will help you out!

1) I don't think there are any hard and fast rules for this. I prefer aileron DLGs as they don't have any bad launch characteristics that most of the poly DLGs have. You want all of your linkages as tight as possible and overall you want the plane as light as it can be. Depending upon how long you have been flying and how comfortable you feel with ailerons you might want to get an EPP DLG just to get the feel of it...but this isn't really necessary...I started out with a Lucia which is pretty much an egg shell with a spar.

2) Repairs sould be as light as possible. The type of repair needed will greatly depend on the type of damage that the plane has suffered. Whatever you do try not to add weight. CA (unless foam safe) is generally a bad idea...not always though. For wing repairs I generally stick to .75oz glass with some good finishing epoxy resin (don't get the 1-1 stuff your LHS sells...)

3) I've never tried it...I guess it could be done...but I think you would be better off with 1/3AAA cells as they probably would weigh less than a LiPoly...I could be out of line here...never done it. I would like to know though

4) Flight Phases are again a pilot preference thing. I try and keep them all on the left stick, that way I don't have to worry about flipping switches to change different modes. A little reflex is good for launch, you can also put in some up elevator too so that the plane pulls more vertical. Thermal should have the flaps drop a couple of degrees so that your plane slows down and can make tighter turns, using the wing as the lifting force rather than just the ailerons. Landing should drop the flaps even more with elevator compensation so that you can nose down and come to a screeching hault to get your time

5) No clue on this one! My guess is that they are right handed and are guiding the plane in with their left hand so they can catch the wing tip with their right and get ready to throw again with minimum turn around time. Never tried it so I can't say to do it or not...worth a shot if you're good with your left thumb though. Just remember when you're in that mode so you don't accidently think you're pulling the flaps down and stall the plane!

6) Dead air time is the amount of time you can keep your plane in the air with 0 wind and 0 thermals. Of course if you can launch higher this number will go up. I think the average dead air time is around 1.5 minutes or so...that could be way off...I have heard of some people getting over 2 minutes, but I think the "norm" is around 1-1.5 minutes. Launch height is very important because it can give you an advantage, or disadvantage, compared to the people you're flying with. If you launch higher you have more of a change to find thermals and have a better chance at making your target time. The LoLo or other altitude logger is a popular choice for measuring launch height. It's a device that goes into the fuse and uses atmospheric pressure to calculate your height...accurate to a few feet!

7) Contests tasks can vary. Some of the more popular types are ladders within a window. Say you have a 10 minute window...and in that time you have to get a 15second, 30second, 45second, 1minute, 1.5minute, 2 minute, and a 3 minute flight. So that would give you 9 minutes of flight time and 1 minute of total turn around time. Some contests will let you fly them out of order while others make you do the ladder.

Hope that helps!
Jared
Nov 03, 2004, 03:53 PM
Registered User
Diesel 10's Avatar
TJ - I am also a newbie to DLGs. I just recently bought a copy of this:

http://www.radiocarbonart.com/Pages/proclinicmain.html

It is the "DLG for Dummies (and experts too I suspect)" you asked about. I have a similar RC background and found it really useful prior to spending some money on a plane etc.
Nov 03, 2004, 04:18 PM
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averen's Avatar
I have heard good things about this DVD...I don't own it, but want it
Nov 03, 2004, 04:59 PM
Flying the Inland Valley
I printed a copy of the web page for the DLG DVD and put it on my wifes keyboard. Christmas is coming.

Joe
Nov 03, 2004, 05:55 PM
Registered User
John Gallagher's Avatar
Is your Avenger a poly or flaperon? If it's a poly you might need a rudder preset (the early Avengers didn't have an Allegro boom). Take a look at the Avenger page (jancomodels). At the bottom of the page is a gif that shows a dlg launch - it takes some time to load.
Concentrate on medium force controlled launches. Don't think about max launch height to begin with. Let your muscles get aclimated to discus launch. Start with short sessions and build up to an hour.
Dead air time is just that - dead air. Discus launch flying is not a form of RC frisbee. The point of this is to thermal. Before you spend the money on the dlg dvd, buy the Secrets of Thermal Soaring dvd. Don't worry about contests, spend a season learning to thermal !!! Nothing in RC beats specking out from a handlaunch.

Here's a website on finding thermals:
http://www.apogeerockets.com/educati...g_thermals.asp
Nov 04, 2004, 02:04 PM
Registered User
Thread OP

don't know


John,
I have no clue whether the Avenger is a poly or a flapperon, but my guess is that it is flapperon because it has 4 servos. I won't see it until this weekend when I pick it up. But 4-5 people at our field have the Avenger and they all require 4 channel radios so I am assuming a full house setup.

Thanks for the links to "thermal discovery". Our park is at the edge of a wildlife estuary. I am assuming that the best thermal gradients will be at the edge of the reeds there the dirt road comes and the green grass field starts.

QUESTION1: when you launch, do you throw into the suspected lift area or do you go sideways to it to get max height and then turn into the thermal when you have both hands on the Tx and have gained control of the plane?
QUESTION2: what is the biggest problem to avoid when you DHL launch for someone who knows how to fly rather well in other modes? Is it over-control? poor setup? lack of steep angle climb? whatever.

Much thanks.
Crazy Ted -- a battery junkie
Nov 04, 2004, 02:28 PM
Words...
averen's Avatar
I would say that the biggest potential problem is lack of proper setup. Since the plane leaves your hand at a MUCH faster speed than it normally flys at, any little problem is greatly magnified. So, if your elevator, rudder, or ailerons aren't quite centered then the big increase in speed can cause problem.

When I first got my Lucia I was playing with launch presets. It was coming out of my hand at about a 45* angle to the ground. I wanted it to get closer to 90* to get better launch height. So I setup a switch on my TX to give me a little more up elevator (about 5%). The first time I DLed it the plane looped...that switch was never used again!

Just make sure you do some hard level glides and that there isn't any bad behavior.

There are a couple of Avengers in my club. You can get them as either Poly or Flaperon. Most are flaperon. The Avenger is a good flying DLG. It's not as competitive as the XP4, but a good plane none the less.

Good Luck!
Jared

PS > going to Dallas this weekend to pickup another DLG
Nov 04, 2004, 03:09 PM
Registered User
Ænima's Avatar
im using a single 1000mah lipo cell in my boomer, only because i had it spare but thinking about it you get a better capacity for the weight and as long as i have charged it that month im good to fly.
Last edited by Ænima; Nov 05, 2004 at 05:26 AM.
Nov 04, 2004, 05:53 PM
Principal Member
compuatic's Avatar
Ted, welcome to the powerless world! (not quite the darkside). The avenger is an excellent way to get started. Come out and fly with us gliders this sunday at baylands.

-- Mohamed
Nov 05, 2004, 02:45 AM
Registered User
ed_khan's Avatar
I am also a newcomer to DLG, but love the sport of soaring. and after watching zagis fly, totally fell in love with the DLG idea. Working on my first built up DLG right now, and hope to get better with more experience
Nov 05, 2004, 07:09 AM
Registered User
DUDES

By all means, get Paul Natons vidio. There is a wealth of information on it that will save months of learning curve. Also on the Polecataero.com web site are a bunch of applicable articles on set up. thermal turns and hints of setting up your plane. This forum can also be helpful with specific questions. Lastly, you can call the shop for any help needed, doesn't matter what dlg you have chosen to start, more important that we are getting another dlg'r:-) The Avenger should do fine.

Denny
Nov 08, 2004, 06:53 PM
Registered User
Thread OP

rite of passage


Denny,
thats for the pointers to URLs. It turns out this was an AVENGER 2 unit with flapperons. I had a great time flying it this weekend with help from the glider people. I even had my flying buddy "hijack" my DLG because he just could not stand to let me have all the fun.

QUESTION1: when you complete your launch turn and release, is your arm supposed to be moving strongly upwards? Some say to throw it straight out and let the elevator carry it upwards; others say to loop it down and then complete the loop in the 70 degree upwards angle and release. What is the preferred method?

QUESTION2: my plane has some previous minor cracks on the wing LE and on the pod. I want to re-finish these. What is the preferred method? Can I just use finishing resin, or do I have to put another 0.75 oz glass over the existing fiberglass? What brand of finishing resin do you recommend?

QUESTION3: the big sailplanes have audio jacks that they put in to open the battery connection while the plane is on the ground. Is this a good thing to do for a DLG or do you just put up with battery drain until you are done flying?
With four HS-55's and a Plantraco DSP4, how long would 4 2/3AAA NiMh batteries keep the system working?

QUESTION4: for a small DLG like the Avenger, at what wind velocity should you not continue to fly on a cold day once the thermals are gone?

Much thanks,
Crazy Ted
Nov 08, 2004, 07:45 PM
Registered User
Mr. Ted

We'll give this a shot:

QUESTION1: when you complete your launch turn and release, is your arm supposed to be moving strongly upwards? Some say to throw it straight out and let the elevator carry it upwards; others say to loop it down and then complete the loop in the 70 degree upwards angle and release. What is the preferred method?

I prefer to throw flatter because the up and down throw risks a ground strike with the wing tip on the down stroke. Some guys get away with this just fine but it seems that I don't:-)

QUESTION2: my plane has some previous minor cracks on the wing LE and on the pod. I want to re-finish these. What is the preferred method? Can I just use finishing resin, or do I have to put another 0.75 oz glass over the existing fiberglass? What brand of finishing resin do you recommend?

Any decent finishing resin will be fine. I use MGS but any decent one will work. Actually on repairs a lot of times I just use foam safe CA. I would use a little glass if the crack is worth bothering with a little glass to tie things back together can't hurt.


QUESTION3: the big sailplanes have audio jacks that they put in to open the battery connection while the plane is on the ground. Is this a good thing to do for a DLG or do you just put up with battery drain until you are done flying?
With four HS-55's and a Plantraco DSP4, how long would 4 2/3AAA NiMh batteries keep the system working?

We use the mini jacks like the one listed on my web site. I don't know the answer to the battery drain question

QUESTION4: for a small DLG like the Avenger, at what wind velocity should you not continue to fly on a cold day once the thermals are gone?

When you quit having fun:-) To be a good contest pilot you have to practice in all conditions, not just the good ones
Nov 08, 2004, 09:46 PM
Registered User
ClayH's Avatar

Always do a short handtoss first launch of the day!


[I would say that the biggest potential problem is lack of proper setup. Since the plane leaves your hand at a MUCH faster speed than it normally flys at, any little problem is greatly magnified. So, if your elevator, rudder, or ailerons aren't quite centered then the big increase in speed can cause problem. ]

I can vouch for this. Flying a brand new (3 days old) DLG at the local park. Flew great the day before..no worries. So I turned on, made sure everything worked right directions, and gave a 1/3 DLG toss. The plane did a quick arc and planted in the ground up to the wing. Apparently when I had layed my radio down getting back into my car the day before my elevator trim was hit and I had probably 5-6clicks of down trim put in. Didn't check the elevator to make sure it was level before tossing it, just check the movement. Lesson learned, always check for centered surfaces before flight and give a light, javlin type trim toss for the first flight of the day. Like the man said , if anything is off on a hard launch, you'll know it in a hurry.


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