Sunday, September 30, 2007

Mid weekend update

Was quite windy in Post Mills on Saturday and most folks decided to stay on the ground but Tom Hopper wanted to fly the Blanik and needed me to go with him so Keith was summoned to tow and we had a wonderful flight following cloud streets to the north.

We are flying on Sunday, see you there.


Monday, September 24, 2007

News from afar

I don't have a weekend report this week. I've been traveling, and I don't know what happened at Post Mills.

I do have a story, however. I am at the Bermuda High Soaring School near Lancaster, South Carolina. It's a gliders-only operation owned by friends Frank and Jayne Reid. Two days ago, a PW-5 took off with one aileron disconnected. The glider pilot figured out what was wrong after it was too late to release and land straight ahead. Since the glider was controllable on tow, the pilot decided to hang on for some altitude and time to think. After discussing the situation by radio with the tow pilot, the two of them decided to make an approach to a landing while still on tow. They descended at low power setting and full spoilers on a long final approach, and three feet above the ground, the glider released and made a normal landing.

Afterwards, all observers and commenters agreed that it was the right thing to do (to stay on tow). The general consensus is that a stable situation is better than an unpredictable situation.

I wonder what would have been the outcome if this had happened at Post Mills. We don't have radios (not all gliders here have radios, either - they were lucky). Should there be a tow signal for this situation? It seems that this mishap would be more common than a release failure, for which we do have a signal. Definitely something to think about. Comments invited.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Name that club member

Some club members show up at the field less often than others. I wonder how many of our currently active members recognize this guy.

Friday update

Sunday looks like a better flying day than Saturday. This is fortunate, since more members will show up on Sunday at 10am to help pack up for Wave Camp.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Weekend update, 9/15 & 16

Saturday was rain all morning and the sky cleared at about 1:30 right behind the cold front but really too late to get things started and was pretty windy anyway.

Sunday was a great day for the Tunbridge Worlds Fair so I didn't arrive to tow till about 2:30 and then Tom, Skip, Pete and Steve all had 4 hour flights to round off a perfect day.

Skip took this photo:

Friday, September 14, 2007

Friday update

This blog's track record for calling the weekend weather has been poor. This weekend's weather looks iffy at best. Let's hope I'm wrong again.

Tony had a nice 2-hour flight yesterday in PM.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Weekend Report September 8 - 9

The cold front slowed down, giving us a full day of flying on Saturday, and a washout on Sunday (both unexpected).

Andy took a day off on Saturday: Keith towed and Rick instructed. There was some lift in the middle of the afternoon, but the day's emphasis was on takeoff and landing practice. At the instructor's urging, we practiced getting the skid off the ground early on takeoff, and holding it off until the end of the ground run on landing. This resulted in some longer rollouts and some gentler treatment of the Schweizer gliders. Tom H, Peter B, and Jason all demonstrated these techniques in the 2-33. In the meantime, Skip practiced touchdowns in PM, and Pete D flew 3J. As if to illustrate the need for gentler treatment of the gliders, Sonny showed up late in the day to take measurements for new skids for both 1-23s.

After we cancelled the cookout Saturday morning, Petey and Mary conspired to put on a party at Petey and Peter's anyway. Those of us who were hanging around the airport late in the day were willing to change our evening plans to attend yet another PMSC dining event.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Friday update

Saturday will start out warm and hazy and end up stormy. Sounds like a good day for lessons, if we get started early enough. The Saturday morning phone message will include information about the cookout. Sunday will be a good soaring day if it isn't too windy.

Wave Camp I

Here is some basic information about the upcoming Wave Camp at Gorham, New Hampshire:


There will be flying at Gorham from October 6 through October 14. The first weekend (October 6-8) will be organized by GBSC. The second weekend (October 13-14) will be organized by us. If you can make it on only one weekend, pick the second one.

Colonial Fort Inn (603) 466-2732
Gorham Motor Inn (603) 466-3381 *
Moose Brook Motel (603) 466-5400
Mt Madison Motel (603) 466-3622
Northern Peaks Motel (603) 466-2288 *
Royalty Inn (603) 466-3312
Top Notch Motor Inn (603) 466-5496
Tourist Village Motel (603) 466-3312
The Libby House B&B (603) 466-2271
Town & Country Motor Inn (603) 466-3315

* walking distance to airport

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Weekend Report September 1 - 3

It was a great weekend with clear weather all three days. On Saturday, Doug towed all day and good solo flights were made by Tony, Pete, Skip, and Kevin. The student pilots were Tom C, Jason, and new member Faraday. On Faraday's flight, Jason hooked up the rope and John M ran the wing, making it the first all-teenager launch of the season. When it was Jason's turn, he made a 2000 foot climb, the first real thermal climb of his career.

On Sunday, the conditions were a little weaker. Mike, Jason, and Kevin started the day by digging post holes in the back yard for a new fence for North. By the end of the day, nearly everyone was involved in the fence project. Flights were made by Tony, Pete, Tom H, Gregg, Rich and Sonny (who seems pleased with his new variometer). Gregg and Kevin served as instructors for Jason and Faraday while Rick worked on the fence. At one point, all the gliders were in the air, and we took the opportunity to mow the tiedowns. Andy towed all day. At the after-flying party, we watched a slide show of Pete's photographs. Some pictures were truly excellent, and we hope to publish them in the club's web photo archive soon. By the way, we are really getting the hang of this cookout thing. We had 21 participants, and there was food left over.

On Monday, the sky was still blue, but the thermals were even weaker. Peter B started the day with a 1-hour lesson in the 2-33, but the thermals eluded everyone else. Valiant tries were made by Steve, Skip, Doug, Tony, and Rich, with Bob D towing. After a few pattern tows, Jason made his first solo flight. Here's his picture perfect final approach:

And here is what happened next:

The guy with the bucket is Creighton. Too bad you can't see his evil grin in this photo. Laurie took the pictures. After he dried off, Jason made another solo flight (for a total of five flights for the day) and managed to stay up for about 4o minutes. Congratulations, Jason!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

New Member

Welcome to PMSC, Faraday Borg! Faraday had a couple of flights with us a year ago, and now she has officially joined the club. She has been interested in gliding for a large fraction of her entire life. Faraday is 14 years old.