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Monday, December 07, 2009

Who needs a Rudder?

Shortly before launch! Note -Rudder is still attached!

Piet - "Now Ev, if the rudder comes off, just keep flying. OK!"

At the last Highveld Thermal League (HTL) held on Sunday 4 December my Shadow and Jochen's Shongololo were involved in a mid-air shortly after launch in the first slot of the first round.

Both of us never even realised that the two planes had actually hit each other. I remember passing, what I thought was another plane below mine. Obviously it wasn't, but because of the difference in size of the two models, (the Shadow at 3,6 met and the Shongololo just under 3 met.) it looked as if they were at different altitudes.

All I remember thinking was that the roll rate wasn't as it should be. I started fiddling with the aileron/rudder mix , but was soon concentrating on working the thermal to gain altitude. I did see a shiny flash a few times, which I thought was a bit of winch line or something but in fact it was the Shadows rudder, which had been torn off and was fluttering down.

It was only on landing approach after 10 minutes of flying that I saw something was sticking out the side of the fin. I recorded a 9minute 58second flight and landed 1,2 meters from the spot. Gavin and Lionel came over and told me that they has seen something land in the adjacent field.

The damaged Shadows fin. Note, no rudder ----------------A bit of Shadow fin stuck to the Shongololo

Anyway after some cyno and some tape I soon had everything more of less back together and then it was back to the comp. Luckily not missing any rounds.

-------------------------------------------Hard at work getting it all fixed up.

Jochen only noticed the bit of the Shadows fin wedged between the wind and fuselage on his Shongololo when he was preparing for his next flight a round later and came and showed me. Up until then I still had no idea that we had actually had a mid-air. I just thought that I had perhaps flown into a winch line on launch.

Looks kind of funny without a rudder, but it still flew pretty good. Wasn't too bad on landing either.

So! Who needs a rudder?

Gavin, on the far left, pointing out something fluttering down to Jason!
Dion Launching Paul's Explorer!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Some of the photo highlights of my Year 2009

With only one month to go before Xmas one tends to reflect back on the year gone by, Good and bad and then take the positive’s and one will always be amazed at what you were blessed with. So take a moment and relive some of those special moments with me.

On the 3rd Jan 2009 the PSS Rockwell Aero Commander took to the sky at Volksrust for a perfect maiden flight. (Pictures taken by Izak Theron.)
Click on the any picture to open it in a new window and then click again on the picture to zoom biger or zoom smaller.

In April the three cross country flights with the E-Tsotsi 2M electric glider, resulting in a 72 km by road and 63km straight line SA Distance Record.

All the pictures that I took too many to display at once on the blog of the nature and surrounding arias and oom Louis place at Vloksrust but here are some of many of them.

And at last the picture that got on to the front cover of the RCSD October 2009 issue

and don't forget Shrek the tug pilot

Monday, October 26, 2009

BERG Building Group now has 4 members.

Picture above and below.

Mark holds his new Tsotsi fuse from the mould he build at the BERG building group.

Friday, October 02, 2009

2009 Nationals - Noordsberg

Dandelions & Unicorns, Wind, Cold, Mist, Rain, Sunshine, Thermals, Sink, Calm, All made up one very interesting and challenging weekend. And thanks to all you made this yet another event to remember.

Tow men hard at work
Team work.
Our ever present companion Max.

Everyone got a screwdriver kit and multi meter.

The Wolf Pack with Amazimmy for company

The Goodies and Tsepo and Justice

Team ETB

Team Silverton (Don't know what Russ is doing there?)

The Wolf Pack
SOS Children Village Group
Only Lionel will know what he's cheering about?
ETB's Plane rack and Dion
Shadow with power pod.
A few more Purple Dinosaurs
The HLG Champs
No flying in these conditions.



Rudi, Johan & Conrad
2009 Victor Ludourm - Rudi king