July 23, 2004

July 23, 2004

The past week has been a week I have been going through the planes I intend to fly at the Nat's which is next week. Since I last wrote about the Nat's Bruce has had to drop out of everything except Hand Launch due to his upcoming move into his new home. Also his store was heavily damaged by last weeks storm which picked up his entire roof and slid it off into the parking lot. Johnny B. has had to drop out of the Nat's also as he has changed jobs this past week and will have to wait to accrue some vacation time.

This leaves Ken Marks, Ron Allen, Gordy Stahl, and myself to fly for the LASS club. We still are looking for some of you to come up and take in some of the Nat's experience. Contact me if you are coming we still will need some timers with a friendly face we know. I have been asked several times Muncie is about a 3 hour drive.

Some of the highlights of Nat's week will start this weekend with cross-country flying. This year there will be air towing of scale models on both Saturday and Sunday. Some of these planes will be HUGE with wingspans 4-5 meters and maybe bigger!

Monday will be Hand launch. This is cool to watch as a covey of planes are launched at the start of each round. Yes mid-airs do happen.

Tuesday and Wednesday is two meter. Thursday and Friday is Unlimited. It is not unusual to see up to 20 planes in the air at any one time during these four days.

Saturday is my favorite day. This is when the RES and the nostalgia planes fly. For most of my soaring life I have been flying these bent wing birds and I feel I have an edge here with the straight wing flyers dominating the soaring scene today. It takes a different style to fly a poly plane well. We will see.

Note with me gone to the Nat's, unless there is some one to take my place and get the winch, there will be no flying on Thursday July 29th. I will be back at the field August 1.

I really felt bad last week when Eric launch his BOT with the switch turned off. (pictures are on the web) It will never be known if Eric never got the switch totally turned on before launching or bumped the external switch on launch turning the plane off. In either case I never recommend having the power switch on the outside of the model. I feel it is more positive and safer to have the switch on the inside of the model.

Mounting the switch on the outside is a carryover from power flying where it is hard to get into the model for access to the switch. Sailplanes usually have canopies or nose cones that are easily removed to access the switch. Those planes that must have the switch on the outside it is recommended that they be installed where you will not bump them when launching the model. To test this hold your plane in your hand as if to launch or throw it. Does your fingers or thumb touch the switch? Could you bump it? If so you might want to consider moving it forward and away from your hand or fingers.

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