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Monday, March 19, 2007

Emoyeni takes to the air

The Emoyeni maiden flight - Sunday 18th March.













After months of on and off building on the Emoyeni, while preparing for the Shongololo building group, the project was finally completed with it's maiden flight this past weekend.

The plane is 3,4 meter span and weighs in at 2650grams. With a wing area of 65sqdm it has a wing-loading of 40 gr/sqdm. A bit heavy you might think, but first flights proved that the design can carry the weight very easily.

When the project was stated it was decided to build the wings with NO spars , but instead, to use unidirectional carbon skins. The top surface has a total of 5 layers of UD carbon across the middle 400mm then getting progressively less until just one layer at the tip. The bottom surface has 3 in the middle to 1 at the tip. This method is not the lightest of constructions, but it's very strong, quick and easy to Bag and not very expensive. When I realised that the prototype was going to be a bit on the heavy side I chose the SD7037 section because of it's ability to carry weight.

It is a three piece wing with 2 x 10mm solid carbon joiners at each joint. The fuselage is moulded fiberglass and the tail is an all flying inverted "T" design.

The prototype flew with a Shongololo stabiliser, because the Emoyeni moulds are still not completed. This also contributed to the back end being a bit heavier than desired, causing more lead to be added to the nose, upping the overall weight somewhat.

The first flight was really fantastic. Straight into a thermal and it was soon trimmed out and going up like a homesick Angle. One problem was that I had sprayed the underside of the wingtips white (Oops!) and they soon disappeared form sight and all I could see was the black centre 1400mm. It was like flying a HLG in a monster thermal and rapidly loosing sight of the plane.
So Crow break was deployed and it soon got back down to a more comfortable height where I could see it properly. Overall a very successful maiden outing and I was impressed with the tight thermal turns it can make and the responsiveness of the whole package.

I'm a very "happy chappy" as they say!

The first priority is to add some colour to the underside wingtips and the next is to start on number two. Watch this space!

Cheers
Evan






















3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Skote petors Oom Evan,die kind se naam is Wit Willem, Dubel Bells vir jou.

Van jy weet wie.

the Brain said...

Nice one Ev. Will we see it at MMS on the 1st?

Evan Shaw said...

Oh yes I will be flying it in the HTL events. But pleeeease don't make the landings too tight at the MMS HTL! I realy don't want to break my lovely new plane just yet!