15 March, 2014

Mixed Events

After the maiden flight and not a mark to show for it.
Sunday 9th March will be a very memorable day for lots of reasons and I'll start with the glorious weather. It started with light winds that were forecast to become even calmer as the day went on. Just what I needed to try out my latest slope model that I intended for just such conditions. The model is a Wicked Wing which I believe is a Windrider Bee2 chevron flying wing clone. Happy with the weather and feeling in reasonably good health I loaded up my trusty Ford Mondeo. The car had served me well for 8 years only recently requiring two new springs on the front. In went all my cold weather clothing (which it turned out I didn't need), my camera two normal gliders, the good old SAS Fusion and of course the new Wicked Wing.

Just short of an hour later I arrived at the Edge Top slope where I had expected the wind to be just right and indeed it was. The gentle breeze was blowing a little too strong for the paragliders that were there too and they were waiting for the wind to drop. With the help of a fellow model pilot a few test glides showed that I had too much reflex on the elevons (the waggly bits at the back of the wings were sticking up too much that means). 
The paragliders looked magnificient

After some trimming we went for the launch proper and off she went as smooth as could be. A little more trimming on the elevons was needed but I soon had it sorted out. The wind had started to die down too and at one point I got caught in some sink; then I found the thermal that had caused the sink! Great, I was getting really good height from the rising air of the thermal and it looked like I could have stayed up there all day but there comes a point when the model gets so high it's too small to see so I had to break out of the lift and bring the model lower down. I flew around for another minute or two and decided I was happy  with that for a maiden flight and decided to try for a landing which needed to be to my right as by now the paragliders were behind me and to my left, preparing to get airborne. Once more I wasn't disappointed with the handling and the model easily landed as planned. By this time the wind was fine for the paragliders and that put an end to my flying at that site as they were flying in front of the slope and a conflict with a manned craft would not be good. That rather spoilt the occasion but we decided that the Pool site wasn't far away and might be flyable even though the wind direction wasn't all that good.