Friday, May 16, 2008

More Power...

I was pretty disappointed with myself after I put the prop through the
gliders wing yesterday. Sure it was a good save of a difficult landing,
even just a moderate tailwind adds enough to your ground speed to make
it a very fast run indeed which is why it is so important to land and
T/O into wind. I could have done my prop or hurt myself as I don't use
wheels (too macho ha ha ha) so just a torn sail (and bruised ego) was a
good result. As always it resulted from me departing from proper
procedure and taking foolish risks. I actually thought about putting up
my windsock before T/O but as it was almost nil wind I didn't bother.
Experience should really have taught me by now that it is precisely on
the NIL wind days that you need a windsock as it is more likely to
suddenly change in direction. Ironically my last prop through sail
mistake happened here for the same reason, failure to pay attention to
the fact that the sea breeze has come in and the wind has switched from
a light NE to a stronger SW. I went looking for an industrial sowing
machine and found none. I went looking for sail repair cloth or rip stop
spinnaker repair tape but also had no luck. In the end I did the best
job I could sowing up the sail myself and I am quite happy with the
repair, I put as much load on it as I could and could not make it fail.
It is not a high wing loading in this area and I am absolutely confident
in the repair. After I rigged the fun once the repair was complete I
tested running with it to make sure there was no induced turn and it
felt fine. I flew from the golf course over town in the sea breeze, as I
got higher the wind speed increased and I found myself going backwards
at best climb. I got some great photos that I am uploading to Flicker
now. Everything is so green after they had 500mm of rain in one week
last month. The new marina has a bridge, I heard that the contractor
went broke after the last heavy rains as they erode ones earthmoving
progress. You can again really see how the Exmouth area (and lets face
it the whole of Oz) is just the result of a lot of rain/weather induced
erosion. Today I am a microlight student pilot.

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