Friday, December 28, 2012

I don't know who Otto Ballod is, but I plan to find out

They named this airport after him.

and I'll be blogging from the US Team website for the next three weeks.


Sunday, December 23, 2012

7H or N4 - Take your PIK

Usually this time of year, we get reports from Tony, reminding us of how much better the conditions are in Florida than in Vermont. Well, it turns out that he's been spending his time shopping for a glider and not flying so much.

It appears that his efforts have paid off, and he has successfully negotiated the purchase of another dive-brake-free glider, a PIK-20B. Congratulations, Tony!

The glider is still in Nevada, and if all goes well, he'll be flying it at Air Sailing or Minden during his annual western pilgrimage, before finally bringing it home.

The only question that remains is whether he'll keep his current contest number (7H), or undergo a complete change of identity (N4).

Also, the original 7H is for sale.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

The big picture

The busiest day at the Gorham wave camp this year was on Saturday, October 6.  On that day about 24 gliders were on the field, and most of them got into the air.

Rick Roelke took a picture.  It doesn't look like much here, but if you click on it, you'll get the 11502 x 2159 pixel version, which is pretty impressive.

And here is another one, equally gigantic, featuring PMSC gliders.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

PMSC 2012 Statistics

Club Glider Usage:
PI (Blanik L-23) - 205 flights, 107 hours
PM (HpH 304c) - 75 flights, 138 hours
3J (SGS 1-23) - 61 flights, 69 hours
67 (SGS 2-33) - 65 flights, 31 hours
67 (SGS 2-33) - 44 flights, 23 hours - flown by Sugarbush Soaring Youth Camp

Total - 450 flights, 368 hours

Towplane Usage:
PMSC Birddog - 501 tows
Sugarbush - 46 tows
NESA - 9 tows
GBSC - 14 tows

Total* - 570 tows

Pilot Milestones (did I miss anything?):
First Solos - 4 (Sam, Greg, Dan, Dennis)
New Licenses - 1 (Greg)
Gold Badges - 3 (Tony, Thomas, Tim)
FAI 750Km Diploma - 1 (Evan)
NH State Records - 9 (Evan)
VT State Records - a bunch pending (Evan)

It was a great accident free year!

*number of tows to PMSC gliders and PMSC members billed through PMSC

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Name That Airport

Clue: A couple of PMSC members will spend New Years here.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Who needs wheels?

Happy Wright Brothers Day, everyone.

Here's a trivia question: who was the first person to take off and land an airplane on wheels?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Another Day at Springfield

I went down to Springfield (VSF) to pick up PM so we could do some maintenance on it.  I was there, PM was there, Walter was there, the Pawnee was there.  It was sunny with no wind and clouds were starting to pop.  So I took a flight.  After about 40 minutes of struggling to maintain release altitude a cloudstreet developed and I was able to get to cloudbase and just kept climbing.  It was a slow climb but it went all the way up to 9,000'.  From there I pushed forward one cycle in the wave to Plymouth, Vermont.  I wandered around Plymouth for a while until I found the primary which quickly (4 knots+) took me to 11,000 feet.  At 11,000 feet Walter came by in the RV to check on me and then it was an easy flight to Killington (which I never saw because of the undercast), Okemo, Claremont and home.

PM should be ready to go again after a little maintenance.  I'll let you know where it's currently parked.  Tows can be arranged at VSF.  Go for it!


Monday, December 3, 2012

Trough Soaring

I took PM to Springfield last Thursday for a little trough soaring.  Trough soaring is like wave soaring.  Both use mountain waves.  In wave soaring you ride the crest of the wave to high altitudes.  In trough soaring you ride around in the trough of the wave hoping to get up to the crest.

It was a nice 3 hour flight (the data logger was not working for the first half).  A lot of it was hanging around between 5,000' and 6,000' waiting for stronger lift.

Thank you Walter for towing and Sonny for wing running.

PM is currently in Walter's hangar and ready to fly (I have the data logger and battery).