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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Diana 2 wings

The wings are in the bag. both top and bottom skins are attached in one go.
The curved leading edge is achieved by cutting three panels with a taper, and then carefully sanding to get a rounded shape.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

FEB Postal Report and scores for BERG

(6 pilots )

Evan, Robert and myself flew on the first Sunday (the 3rd FEB).
Conditions being windy and some good thermal activity around.
Evan capitalized on these conditions as they reached a high at round about
1.30. Flying one flight after another with no interval in between.
I started a little to late and ended up with two really bad flights as the good conditions just faded away.

Robert had a similar fate to me and also ended with a mediocre score.
The next group of pilots elected to fly on Sunday the 24th FEB with very similar conditions as the first Sunday. Peter Joffe an his heavy 2m Tsotsi seemed to be on top with Mike and his T tail ellipse close behind. Len Thomas suffered some servo damage on an out landing on his first flight and opted not to fly the rest of his flights.

Individual Score’s

Evan Shaw Emoyeni 3.4 M 2280
Peter Joffe Tsotsi 2M 1973
Mike May Ellipse 2.8M 1746
Piet Rheeders Makulu 3M 1604
Robert Davies Shongololo 3M 1449
Len Thomas Shongololo 3M 218

Team Score = 5999

Sunday, February 24, 2008


Members of the BERG Club met yesterday (Sunday 24th FEB) for the forth AGM since the BERG Club was started in 2003.

The Meeting was led by Mike, Chairman for 2007 and went according to schedule.
All matters that needed discussion were attended to and the minutes of the meeting will be posted on the BERG blog once processed.

In the meantime the new BERG committee that was elected for 2008 yesterday is:

Chairman: Evan Shaw
Treasurer: Charl Viviers
Secretary: Gordon Pram.
Safety Officer: Piet Rheeders.

For those members that did not fly round 1 of the postal’s also made use of the reasonably good conditions to do so before the AGM meeting started and likewise we had some general flying after the meeting was complete.

Photo Below ( new members ,Sam, Edmand and Tony)

Piet, timeing for Peter JoffeEvan Shaw, Chairman For 2008

Robert, Racing in the week, gliding on the weekend.

Gordon (above)and Evan Launching (left)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Shongololo # 16 is Born

On Wednesday evening Shongololo N0. 16 (Nicknamed Shongij) was born.

Kobus opening the mould.

And out popped the fuselage

Kobus with all the bits and pieces

The Team. Lionel, Kobus and Jochen

Diana 2 out the mould

The moulds are complete ,waxed and sprayed , I layed up plenty of 200gr carbon as the nose and pod of the Diana is rather slim and it needed to be rigid enough.

While the fuselage halves are curing ,I sprayed up the canopy mould and layed it up also with 163gr glass x 2 ad 1 x 200gr carbon finished of with 1 x 106gr glass cloth. Funny my first attempt would not cure and remained like rubber(I used old harderner which I had kept for a small job) lesson learnt.

The canopy popped out rigid and shiney. I will trim it to shape and get it to fit nicely on the fuselage.

First half of the mould off and it looks ok , the white flashing is from the joining goop and breaks off very easily.

Here the fuselage is cleaned up and the canopy . the join line will be sanded and the whole fuselage sprayed once the boom is on.

Its starting to resemble the Diana 2,
not perfectly as I have increased the nose ever so slightly to make it stronger as well as the shape of the wing seats but the results are pleasing, next its the boom and those curved leading edge wings.

Monday, February 18, 2008

F3B League at B.E.R.G.

Thought I’d start this report off a little differently with a rather boring heading picture. Not much action out there, but a job someone has to do. Thank you, thank you, thank you to all the members that pitched in to help with the F3B League event this last weekend. Above, the view from Base A: signallers Peter, Gordon and Tony on duty at Base B for the distance task. Thanks also to Evan for setting up the field and being our CD for the day and Justice for all the parachute fetching (although he makes a financial killing off of us – but he's worth every cent). Also to the ladies for manning Base A for speed and Martie for cooking us lunch as well. Thanks again to all the helpers - just can't do it without you guys.

Now onto the flying: the field was in excellent condition – the grass short and thick enough to soften our worst landings. Only Piet managed to break an Ellipse nose with a very skew dork landing. Other than that, no serious model casualties. The wind was a little light and variable but that didn’t stop the top contenders from putting in some stunning speed times and distance laps.

Craig helping Robert through his first speed and distance runs. This was Robert’s first F3B contest and he`s still dead keen.

Now needs to retrim that Shongolo which up till now it’s only flown thermals. Also had to sand away some of the flap hinge between rounds.

Above: a tense moment getting Peter Eagle over the Base B line after his speed run.

Left: Peter flying, Dion helping get through a really tight base B turn.

Below: Michelle and Craig in action - on the left about to launch and on the right cool and collected during the speed run.

Below left: Piet setting trims on one of his Ellipse models and below right: Matthew and Justice taking a well deserved lunch time nap – both were extremely active through the day.

... and don't forget to keep an eye on the F3B blog for the day's results.

Speed Astir Trim and Decals

After the overall paint job the next step was to get some refernace material for making up decals. So on Saturday afternoon I jumped in my car and drove the 5km to Orient gliding club where I keep my real glider. Digetal cammera in hand I started going from hangar to hangar looking for Grobs to take pics of. I knew there were no Speed Astirs on the field so I would have to get the Grob logo and the lettering font off other Grob aircraft. The gliders I focused on were Grob 102 single Astirs and Grob 103 Twin Astirs.

When I got home I downloaded the pics to my PC and imported them into Photoshop.
I cut away the background and cleaned up the logos.

The next step was to print the logos in different font sizes, cut them out and place them on the modle till I came up with the right size logo.

The final check for scale was made by compairing the mockup decal on the model to the photo taken of the real thing.

By taking lettering from othe Astirs I was able to make up the Speed Astir logo.

Mockup decals were again printed in different font sizes and checked on the model for scale.

Comparisons were again made to the real thing to final check the scale of the logo.

So now it is off to the printers to have the decals printed and while that is being done I will be spraying the orange trim on the nose, rudder and ailerons.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Scale Scale Scale ...

Looks like not much happening out there other than everyone furiously building scale models for the Sungazer event. Can’t wait! And now for all you balsa junkies (yes, I confess I’m one of them), here’s a quick update on the K8B aileron modification project.

First job was to hack the ailerons away from the wing in a nice straight line. After marking carefully, used the Dremel jigsaw - went in through the trailing edge at the tip, across through the ribs with their cap strips and then out at the trailing edge again. Then glued a 3mm balsa strip for the aileron hinge, cut away 10mm of the cap strips on each rib and sheeted the top and bottom neatly to give the hinge line some box strength. Not lekker hacking into such nice structure but when finished, looked just like it was originally designed for ailerons.

Finished off by fitting a plywood rib doubler to the rib onto which the servo will be mounted. Then sheeted the bottom of the rib bay where the servo pushrod will exit the wing. I reckon I can fit the aileron servo and complete airbrake system without messing with the leading edge D-box structure at all. Servo wires will run through small holes in each rib between the spars and I’m planning to make the whole airbrake system complete in a box that I can just slip in behind the spar (maybe even top and bottom scissor type brakes as per scale). Biggest challenge will be drilling the holes through the plywood ribs under the root sheeting!

Took a while fixing up the actual ailerons (no photo yet) as I built in the hinge angle and also partly sheeted the top and bottom surfaces to add strength.

And just in case you’re wondering, the allenkey kit, heavy duty screws and purple aileron servo covers are for the Ellipse in the background which was temporarily moved off the workbench for this project - but getting back to it right now – just have to sort out that glitch problem that seems to be caused by something in the wing wiring harness. F3B League competition at B.E.R.G. on Sunday - see you there.

Mould making part 3

With Scale gliders, being flavour of the month ,the pressure is on to get these ships ready for the Sungazer slope trip in April, Charl has just posted his rebuild below and what a transformation,

His Astir ,will really look good with its decals on.

I am forging ahead with my SZD-56 DIANA 2 and hereunder is the completion of the fuselage pod mould.

In my usual haste I cut the splitter a little oversize, but no problem to fill and shape with some feather lite body filler.

In this photo I have masked the splitter, with plastic tape , especially the rough chipboard edge, I have also repaired a ding (light filler) which will leave a mark in the gelcoat , which can be polished out later.

A layer of epoxy gelcoat is applied , a little thicker over the ding repair.

The glass cloth layup over the plug
is shown , several layers of thin cloth go over the sharp edge of the wing seat , I again used all my offcut UD carbon to make a stiff light mould.
In the background is the Swift after the nose was rebuilt.

This view is the second side , with the splitter removed and the edge cleaned up. It will be waxed and the gel-coat, glass cloth, epoxy layup repeated.
Note the locating bubble on the nose used to line the two halves up when joining the fuselage.

The End

Speed Astir Restoration

Last week i got a call from Mike May saying that he had just bought a bunch of moddeling kit from a guy that was emmigrating and wanted to konw if I was intersted in any of these planes. What I found was one very beat up scale glider with hollow molded wings that had been repaired and a Grand Esprit in perfect nick.

So this is what I staretd with.

The first task was to identify the type of glider. I used three basic charataristics to ID the ship canopy shape, wing form and tailplain shape. Off the bat it looked like one of the Glas Dirks ships (DG) but after consulting the sailplain directory the only ship with the right tail and canopy that tapers right from the wing root was the Speed Astir

The next step was to flat the whole plane to get rid of all the old paint.

After sanding I sprayfilled all the dings and final sanded it.

The next step was two light coats of white 2K and radio gear instalation. Next week i'll spray the trim, add the decals and sort the CG.