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Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Volksrust early January trip

This beauty was spotted at our overnite accommodation at Oom Loius farm, just one of the little distractions that make these outings away from the city special. It is not a four eyed ghost but a moth.

The previous post was of Piet, Edmund and Evans slope outing a few days before we went down. Piet made a week of it and stayed on to fly with the group that came down for our traditional new years slope trip. Fortunately we had good winds with Saturday and Sunday being exceptional 35 kph on the northwestern slope, allowing all the big scale ships to fly.

Saturday we had fantastic conditions with valley release late in the afternoon, very smooth and bouyant air, conditions that are clear and the whole sky seems to be going up. Here Andries does a running launch of Norbert's SB - 10 still one of the most gracefull gliders in the air.

Needless to say we flew our hearts out. The usual suspects formed our group as well as some visitors who we hope will fly with us in future and the JOMAC glider guys including Ken Kearns with his usual high quality scale gliders. Ken pays a lot of attention to detail on these planes and unfortunately the extreme windy conditions on the east point late friday got the better of his aerobatic CELSTAR glider which folded its wings. Joining us after Ken had left was Howard and another Ken and his son Tyrone. These guys are new to the slope but had a ball flying, I am sure they are new converts. Also joining us were Gert and Andries who spent some time flying for the day. This trip also saw a
string of maiden flights all successfull. Piet got his AEROCOMMANDER (A.K.A. a Hoovermatic after pilot Bob Hoover) airborn and it flew great. In my video footage it could easily be mistaken for the real thing. I am sure some photo's will follow.

Len Thomas maidened his SLINGSBY SEDBURG T21, a stunning scratch build. After a nailbiting flight Izak stepped in to make the landing. This plane requires some tunning/setting up and will then fly even better. It has a very realistic speed for a rag ship.

Len also maidened his HANDLEY PAGE VICTOR bomber and this is a real winner. We hope to see it at the next P.S.S. event. It flies extremely well.

Charl maidened his rebuilt SPEED ASTIR on the south slope. It flies very well but unfortunately in dying lift as the wind suddenly swung east a hastly landing approach in the rotor and an attempt to go around led to it landing out of sight, on the slope face and sustaining some damage.

Charl has started repairs and it should be sorted fairly soon.

I maidened a 4.2mtr DG300 for which I built a set of wings for the Multiplex fuselage and the flight went off without incident.

The youngsters kept themselves busy building a bush house.

On sunday the large 7.5mtr DG500 flew again exactly 1 year and 1 day after its short maiden flight last year. This time round I had good air and more confidence and flew it for a lot longer and put it through its paces, it remains a big glider that needs to be handled with respect.

All 16kg and 7.5mtr of DG 500 flying past
I must add that in spite of its size it is rather easy to fly but does retain a lot of energy after a high speed pass such as this , even a bit of wing flex is noticeable.

Peter's SPEED ASTIR gets away cleanly from Norbert's launch.

Howard flew three very mean looking v tail gliders , a Ninja , an Assagai and this one, not sure what it was.

Ken from JOMAC flew this lovely Salto made by Glasflugel it is about 3mtr span.

All in all a great outing and good oppurtunity to check out aircraft that will be at the upcomming Scale glider event the Sungazer.

Ken Kearns lovely red nosed SLINGSBY SKY amongst part of the large scale contingent.

A good gliding start to the new year.

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