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Monday, June 30, 2008

Back to the drawing board

Saterday Peter, Chris, Charl and Myself went out to see if we could successfully launch the Ventus off the ground with the electric assist.

During the week I had pop riveted together a take off dolly with some scrap bits of aluminium I had lying around.

It was a three wheeler with a single at the rear , the idea being that it would be easier to steer with the rudder as it gained speed.

The AXI motor certainly has enough power and with the wind pretty much straight down the runway I fiqured it would take off ok.

A few trail taxi runs showed that I could control and steer with the rudder. Next attempt would be to touch the up elevator and see if it would take off.

At about 80 to 100 mtrs of take off run and gaining speed, it looked good and I pulled the elevator , the trolley/dolly moved slightly under the glider and it pulled off the runway to the side.
I immediatly shut the motor. After several more attempts all doing the same thing we came to the comclusion that the trolley needs a redesign.

What appears to happen is that ,as it approaches flying speed one or the other wing lifts slighty off the trolley which then shifts , the plane then fails to lift off and pulls to the side onto the verge.
The solution is to add some upright pegs which will keep the glider aligned on the trolley until it reaches a higher speed, we will try again soon.

Charl and Peter then flew their power planes and we discussed the prospects of future aero-towing gliders . I think its time to pull my big Pilates Porter out of the ceiling and get it running It has 20cc motor and could tow up medium size gliders but it flies a tad fast.

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