Archive for category R/C Aircraft

The Gentle Advancer – Out of Mothballs (again)

Very early on in the life of this blog I posted a couple of pieces about my ‘Gentle Advancer’ which is a marriage of Quiet Advancer wings and a Gentle Lady fuselage. Both of these gliders are simple 2 metre span 2 channel rudder / elevator gliders with flat bottom Aquilla aerofoils. Re-reading them again has reminded me of the excitement I felt at the time I got her back into the air.

I mentioned that I intended to try my hand at slope soaring. Well it turns out I did and that led to my love of sloping and models like the Duck, Alula and Zip55. However on that initial exploratory flight I broke her :( it was a great landing by any standards in very blustery conditions but the short landing slide on the granite outcrop stove in the leading edge when it caught a wayward rock. The wings were already a bit the worse for wear and I mentioned I wanted to do a rebuild anyway but this forced my hand. Read the rest of this entry »

Second EVA Biplane Video

Well it has been ages since I last posted here, but I haven’t disappeared! Life has been busy with all sorts of things including a new job :) One thing I haven’t had so much time for lately is getting some RC flying in, but I did have a fantastic flight with the EVA Biplane recently.

A Tropical Cyclone was predicted to hit Perth, which is unusual because they don’t normally venture this far south. The evening preceding the impending arrival of TC Bianca was humid and very still, barely a breath of wind. So I quickly charged a pack for the EVA and took her to the nearest oval. This was also the first time I tried my new ‘Helmet Cam’. Basically it’s a 1/4″ whitworth bolt wedged into the top of my old bike helmet. This lets me screw my little Sony still camera on top. I’m quite pleased with the results.

The flight in this video is the sort of stuff I really like to do with my parkflyers. Nothing really fancy, nice and relaxing and good fun. Some touch and go’s, simple aero’s and a beautiful evening sky. Does it get any better than this?

Mountain Models EVA Biplane from Aidan on Vimeo.

Slope Soaring Mullaloo

It appears I’m in slope heaven at the moment :) Westerlies had been predicted for today and a group of guys on RC Groups have been watching the forecasts keenly for a few days. They allowed me to crash the party so the car was packed this morning so I could go straight from work. Thanks guys, it was great to meet you all. It’s always so much fun sharing a hobby with like minded individuals.

The wind was westerly alright, but very weak by the time I arrived. Some of the guys had been there most of the afternoon and I believe conditions been better earlier. When I turned up there was one Alula airborne and I think a Weasel. There was an assortment of flying wings and conventional ‘tailed’ gliders stuck into the bushes waiting for the wind to pick up. I was chomping at the bit to fly so after initial introductions I assembled the Alula and launched rather nervously – Adam, that video had better be flattering!

Read the rest of this entry »

Slope soaring Cott’s

Had a great afternoon today. On an impulse we decided a trip to the beach was in order. seabreeze.com.au said the wind was going to be rubbish (wrong direction) but I packed the Swift II and the Duck just incase.

I know some people have soared Cottesloe beach so we headed there. After some exploring, some procrastinating and eventually more exploring I worked up the courage to pull the Duck out. According to the Kestrel the wind was SSW, averaging 11kts with gusts to 16kts. There was a short section of coast, just south of the groyne and near the carpark that faces SSW, it’s really rocky and necessitates flying over the water. I would love to have used the Swift as a sniffer but I knew that it’s too draggy and lightly loaded for a wind like that. So, the Duck it would have to be.

First launch – I tried the nose first method and promptly gouged the underside on the rocks 1m in front of me. Second launch (gulp) I used the two fingers on the trailing edge method and she was off. The lift was smooth and constant, though I didn’t find it really strong and there was definite variations along the ridge due to the topography. I spent a good 15 or 20 min just leisurely beating up and down the short ridge. I found it fascinating that I was getting passable lift off the ‘main’ westerly facing stretch of coast, even though the wind seemed to be running almost parallel with it. I only explored this for 2 or 3 runs though because it meant flying almost straight out away from me.

On my final run I pushed just a little too far out to the west and the lift died. I turned back and was low on the slope. I think I could have scraped over the top by almost turning into wind and allowing it to blow back and over the lip.  Trouble is there was a couple watching me fly and they were between me and the Duck. So all I could do was deliberately slow it up and let it blow onto the rocks. A few frantic moments followed because I didn’t know if it was stuck on the rocks or in the drink. Fortunately she avoided a swim and some careful climbing had the Duck safe and sound.

It was so peaceful and soothing watching her gracefully soar the ridge, almost spiritual or hypnotic. We finished the day sitting on the beach, daring the waves to come the extra 5cm required to wet our feet. Served us right because one big ‘un came along that nearly wet our everything. I can see these slope / beach trips are going to become quite addictive :) Photo credit to Kristy who took this from the groyne, looking ESE.

EVA Sport Video

This has been a long time coming but I’ve finally got  around to editing a video of my Mountain Models EVA Sport that Ben shot for me some time back. Check the 2min mark for some special commentary from Ben!

Make your own bomb!

‘Nuff said.

Aerial Photography

For quite a long time now I’ve been keen to try my hand at some R/C Aerial Photography. As a way to get started, I purchased a FlycamOne 2 some time ago as a way to get started. I’m well aware that this camera, though versatile, is fairly low performance. I’ve owned it for some months now so this post comes very late, but the b*#%@y thing just won’t work properly.

The first one released the magic smoke and I was out of smoke injection kits so I sent it back to Hobbycity. Either they were out of kits too or they just couldn’t get the smoke back in there because a new one was dispatched my way. The new one worked OK initially on the ground. It’s first aerial video was for the EVA Sport’s maiden flight. For that I got the first 5 sec of video playing frame by frame over approx 10 min, mixed with recorded sound in real time. Aaaargh. So the latest flight was with the ‘still photo every 4 seconds’ mode. Even then it didn’t work properly because when I landed it had stopped shooting (battery still OK and SD card not full). I would not recommend this camera to anyone, though some say they’re good – I think it’s a quality control issue.

*EDIT 11th Jan 2010* A formatted SD card, updated firmware and charged battery seems to have solved things. It seems the battery indicator may be unreliable and I might have had a low battery on previous flights.

Anyway, here’s 4 semi-acceptable shots from Sunday’s flights. It’s the second time I’ve flown at this new location and there seems to be much less turbulence rolling off the nearby trees. The EVA Sport flew beautifully with 1/2 flap and the motor shut off. Nice lazy circuits, she floated like a 2m glider and seemed to take a long time to come down.

The EVA won’t be able to lift my Sony 10MP pocket camera, but I’ve got grand plans for an old set of 2m Glider wings…… There is a dedicated forum for  all things R/C Aerial Photography at RC Groups. It’s a wealth of information, hopefully I’ll pick up some tips when it comes time to design my new bird.

The Alula has landed

Ooh goody. Look what the postman brought today. No time to assemble her tonight, but guess what my bedtime reading will be? (yes I’m an instructions man).

In the meantime, check out these videos to see why I’m so excited ‘Alula Glider on Empty’ and ‘alula uplift’

Slope Soaring in Perth

Well I finally did it. I found somewhere to slope soar in Perth. I flew my Wowings Duck and quite frankly it was ducking awesome!

I have been flying off the edge of the Zig Zag in Gooseberry Hill with my Swift II a few times. It’s a great site with views out over the coastal plain and the city. It’s definitely not suited to conventional models because there is nowhere smooth to take off or land. It’s all hand launch and catch stuff.

The wind was really blowing when I was getting ready to take Kristy to work today. Ordinarily I wouldn’t even consider flying in wind like this, but with the promise of slope lift I packed the models. I took the Swift as a sniffer and packed the Duck just incase the hill was working. (Bear in mind I have little to no slope experience). Read the rest of this entry »

Field Box / Charger

Every RC modeller has some sort of support equipment. There are plenty of occasions flying electrics when all you need is your model and transmitter but for any kind of extended flying session you need more on hand, especially a charger.

My field box is pushing 14 years old now and on its third coat of paint. It started life providing support for my .40 Aeroflyte Hustler. Now the tin of fuel on the end has gone and it’s full of gear for my ‘leccy planes. I bought my Swallow charger a while ago from my local hobby shop Ace RC Models and it’s been serving me very well. I thought it was time I sorted out something permanent yet versatile. Read the rest of this entry>>