Preparing for the AMA Nationals

Glider camp is less than a week away now and I am very excited to be heading up to Muncie, IN for the AMA National Soaring contests.

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Getting Ready for a Competition

Glider camp is less than a week away now and I am very excited to be heading up to Muncie, IN for the AMA National Soaring contests. I'll be flying in the F5J, F3K and Unlimited classes. It has been awhile since I've flown my Supra for winch launch in unlimited and my buddy Scott and I got together last evening to practice. It got me thinking about what we do to prepare for competitions. I wanted to share our system and see what everyone else is doing to get ready.

We set up a bungee launcher in a field with the only intention to get up high enough for a 2 minute flight. We both know how to thermal and there really was no point in trying to stay up for ten minutes. What we wanted to practice was landings. We had a stop watch and would take turns flying. 2 minutes was about right for the length of bungee we had and it enabled us to fly and focus on making a good landing pattern. It's nice having someone there to help read out the stopwatch and count you down, but if you can only fly alone, you can setup a timer file on your phone and play it through some earbuds or a speaker. The short flights mean you can really get in a lot of landings in a limited amount of time. We'll probably go out several times this week for practice, plus it's fun!

So what are you guys doing to prepare for flying competitions?

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Jul 20, 2020, 08:49 AM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
Quote:
So what are you guys doing to prepare for flying competitions?
Yesterday tried to prepare for F3RES by making 6 landing tapes for the event.

Other than that since I have performed so terribly at last year's Nats this year I have been trying to improve my flying and my planes from an F minus to be at least on the level of a C minus. I think I'm at least on a D plus now so that is at least some improvement.


Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons
Jul 20, 2020, 08:56 AM
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Jason Cole's Avatar
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Nice Ryan. I'll have to build me a F3RES plane one of these days. Maybe this winter. I've said it before, You can't lose if you're having fun!
Jul 20, 2020, 09:57 AM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Cole
I've said it before, You can't lose if you're having fun!
That is very true and a person needs to have some introspection on what they find fun, is the contest only fun if they are doing well, etc.

If what a person finds fun is doing well (or doing better) then the first step to preparing is to review a person's previous results and try to identify an area or areas that would give the most benefit for improving. Then once that is identified try to develop a plan to improve it.


Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons
Jul 21, 2020, 04:21 PM
JimN8UAY
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After a great day of practice on Saturday, I'm now trying to get 3 aircraft repaired in time for the NATS! It was a typical hot, breezy and turbulent day, typical contest conditions so great practice, but just a couple bonehead mistakes have me burning the midnight oil in the shop.

Unlimited ship went in on launch after I launched in calibration mode. Even heard the alarms but didn't react soon enough. "Gee, it' s flying inverted well but I can't turn very well..." . Backup radio, back up plane threw a trim switch, a little rough landing on a flap so need to fix linkages. 2M stripped a flap servo, probably on landing. Ground loops can be brutal. After all that excitement decided NOT to fly the F5J bird...not going to risk another so close to the contest! (Actually ended with some DLG stick time! Fun stuff!) Hopefully, all will be well in time, with the UNL Genie being the most labor intensive, but with that crash from altitude, she's not too bad. She's built (and flies sometimes!) like a tank!

Looking forward to some fun times in Muncie!

Jim
Jul 21, 2020, 04:45 PM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
Ouch, bummer on the breakage, Jim. I need to do a bit of work on my Paragon's electric fuselage and am going to try to get a backup DLG setup for my daughter as well.

Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons
Jul 21, 2020, 07:35 PM
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Jason Cole's Avatar
Thread OP
Wow sorry Jim. Better to get those out of the way now before next week.
Jul 21, 2020, 08:35 PM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
I forgot to bring my phone to take my usual selfies but this evening did some testing on my Daughter's Radian to make sure it is ready and did some flights on my Allegro for F3RES shakedown.

So just imagine my ugly mug holding those 2 planes.

Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons
Jul 23, 2020, 11:26 AM
JimN8UAY
Jimn8uay's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Cole
Wow sorry Jim. Better to get those out of the way now before next week.
That's how I look at it, Jason! Nothing worse than pulling servos and solder work while camping, but I've done it before so glad I got to it early! Just about all done, need to remount a couple of flap servos in the Genie and finish sanding out some primer (may not be finish painted in time but primer will still fly!) but otherwise, should be good. Fun times ahead!

Jim
Jul 23, 2020, 01:09 PM
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Awesome. I'll start packing tomorrow and getting ready for a Sat morning departure. Getting really excited now.
Jul 23, 2020, 01:25 PM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
I'm pretty excited too. I'll try to post some pics and video.


Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons
Jul 23, 2020, 04:38 PM
Registered User
Sounds like a lot of fun. Some day I will make it to the Nats.
Aug 11, 2020, 08:19 PM
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xrx1113's Avatar
Hi Jason, do you ever think the light weight Neutrino would be a better choice or does the standard cover everything well.
Aug 12, 2020, 10:29 AM
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That's a matter of opinion to me. We've had discussions about this at contests. Personally, I don't want a super light airplane. It only comes into play very rarely and they are usually much more fragile. The difference it makes over a slightly heavier plane just isn't that much, even in dead air. Maybe if you were going to the World Championships or taking it very very seriously and have a ton of money to have an arsenal of planes, then maybe.

Now that's really talking about Super Light planes. Regular light planes should be fine and can still be ballasted up some when needed. I still only have the one Nuetrino at 54 ounces and I've been able to hang with 39oz planes. The air is almost never truly dead air in a competition so I've never needed to sweat it that much. Hope that helps. I'm sure others will have differing opinions, but you'll need to decide for yourself.
Aug 12, 2020, 11:09 PM
The Mr. Rogers of RC soaring
rdwoebke's Avatar
I could be wrong, it isn't like I have ever flown a plane like a Neutrino, but I think a lot of people make too much of a deal about the small differences between the top models or the weight differences between variations.

Ryan
Latest blog entry: Supergee wing mount pylons


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