23 January, 2016

Blanik L-13 Glider

I wanted a scale glider of a reasonable size but they are expensive and my slope skills don't yet extend to getting landings right most of the time, especially at sites like the Great Orme which is merciless if the model gets caught up in the 'rotor' effect on a good windy day. I needed something to practice with that wouldn't cost hundreds of pounds to buy or to repair. After quite some searching and hesitation I ended up buying a HobbyKing Blanik L-13 glider which has a very off scale electric motor in the nose but I'll come to that in a moment.

The thing is that it has a 7' wing span and is supplied with everything either fitted or just some minor assembly required and claims to have a good aerobatic performance. All this for a few pence over £85; was this too cheap or a bargain I wondered?

Well the maiden flight has taken place and several more since. A few niggles in the assembly and the shedding of the folding propeller are, I suppose, what you get with a cheap model but it flys well and it looks good too, though silver isn't the best colour against grey clouds! On the whole I would say that I'm pleasantly surprised with the handling and I look forward to trying out as a slope soarer before too long. As for robustness and providing a means for me to get my practice is, only time will tell.

After a few months I reviewed the model and published that on the 7th April 2016. You can it here.

04 January, 2016

Quarry Bank - Industrial Heritage Site

Happy new year everyone, may it be a healthy one too. We've got off to a good start with a visit to Quarry Bank, Styal, Cheshire. There's a lot to do and see and we didn't have time for them all but we did have a short walk by the River Bollin and a tour of the mill where all the water driven machines are not just displayed, they still work. Fascinated by the machinery this where I spent most of my time.

There's a lot more to see next time, the Apprentice House (home to the children who worked at the mill) and nearby Styal village will be first on my list.

In the mean time here's a photo gallery of visit and a very brief video of one of the weaving machines running.