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-   -   Gliding - now I get it (https://www.pprune.org/jet-blast/636674-gliding-now-i-get.html)

tartare 10th Nov 2020 01:48

Gliding - now I get it
 
Went up in the front seat of an ASK21 with my boy instructing at Lake Keepit (5 hours out of Sydney) yesterday, before handing him over to the RAAF next year.
At age 54 and after flying in many different types of aircraft over the years, my first time ever in a glider.
Wow - on so many levels.
I'd thought gliding was a sedate, old blokes' sport.
Holy schmoley - I reminded myself of that as we pulled 2gs constant at 45 degrees angle of bank rotating in a bumpy thermal.
And the boy tells me he was being gentle - we cranked on 4.5 in a steep turn and wingover - I can only imagine what full aeros must be like.
Amazing that there is so much energy in the sky to keep you aloft... one small, corrugated iron roof in the sun 3500 feet below was enough to push us up at 5 knots.
I naively asked some of the old pilots sitting around the barbie at night whether they ventured 100kms or so from the field.
One quietly said "...more like 700-800kms..."
A large part of the vastness of NSW is their playground.
Poled around in thermals - not enough rudder - nose all over the place because of adverse yaw, no death grip - just fingers on the stick.
All very jet-like - a tight fitting cockpit, hot and sunny, the roar of the wind, with the harnesses, looking out and around and reading the sky.
Looking at the state of the art Ventus's and other makes, all the electronics, and imagining those guys and girls who fly for 8-9 hours, thousands of miles and get up so high they need oxygen.
Still processing it all... thank you to Val the tug pilot and all of you at Lake Keepit Soaring Club.

Loose rivets 10th Nov 2020 02:07

Gosh, you're in the modern world. When I was training crews for one of the Air Wales incarnations, I was invited to fly a Cadet school . . . glider. It was two abreast and had windscreens. That's all I can remember.

I was horrified. I was flying but really had little idea what to do. What shook me the most was the silence. Didn't like it. No reassuring turbine noise. We didn't go far and I asked exactly where I was to land. Hmmm, I was nifty at side-slipping, but this would be tight. Brakes out, full rudder, and it all went fine. We slithered to a standstill and after I had thanked my host, buzzed off.

It was about 20 years later when I suddenly realised we were probably supposed to do at least two more circuits. I suppose I just had a kind of magnetic desire to close the gap between this silent object and the planet.

I was going to say, Not natural, but your post makes it sound like the most natural flying that's ever been.

IFMU 10th Nov 2020 03:33

One of my former co-workers said that soaring is the only real flying there is. I always figured he knew what he was talking about. Before he was a test pilot for our company, he was in the Air Force and did a couple tours in Vietnam. One in fighters, one in helicopters.

n5296s 10th Nov 2020 03:41

Tried it once. Never got any lift from anything. Boring and expensive.

Curious how you pulled 2G in a 45 degree turn...

tartare 10th Nov 2020 03:44

It was anything but boring.
And my bad, the turn must have been steeper - I was looking down what seemed like a near vertical wing at the time!
My son covered the ASI and made me fly by sound and attitude alone throughout one whole flight, calling out airspeeds from the back.
Very challenging, and quite disconcerting.

ChrisJ800 10th Nov 2020 04:05


Originally Posted by Loose rivets (Post 10922951)
Gosh, you're in the modern world. When I was training crews for one of the Air Wales incarnations, I was invited to fly a Cadet school . . . glider. It was two abreast and had windscreens. That's all I can remember.

I was horrified. I was flying but really had little idea what to do. What shook me the most was the silence. Didn't like it. No reassuring turbine noise. We didn't go far and I asked exactly where I was to land. Hmmm, I was nifty at side-slipping, but this would be tight. Brakes out, full rudder, and it all went fine. We slithered to a standstill and after I had thanked my host, buzzed off.

It was about 20 years later when I suddenly realised we were probably supposed to do at least two more circuits. I suppose I just had a kind of magnetic desire to close the gap between this silent object and the planet.

I was going to say, Not natural, but your post makes it sound like the most natural flying that's ever been.

Sounds like a Slingsby T21, called the Sedbergh in the RAF. I had my first flight in one at Kent Gliding Club a long time ago. Modern fiberglass gliders are amazing with 3 times better glide ratio of the T21.

Ascend Charlie 10th Nov 2020 05:24


Curious how you pulled 2G in a 45 degree turn...
Going UP, not level flight.

My first ever flight was in a Kookaburra glider, from Inverell North airfield, in 1957 with my father as the pilot. He had been RAAF and Qantas and was then a farmer, but being cfi of the local glider club gave him another outlet.

Cable-launched, we only got to about 1000' before release, but still enough for a loop and some swoops. Planted the aviation seed in my mouldy brain, took 45 years of aviation for the matured tree to say "Enough".

Imagegear 10th Nov 2020 05:58


Originally Posted by ChrisJ800 (Post 10922982)
Sounds like a Slingsby T21, called the Sedbergh in the RAF. I had my first flight in one at Kent Gliding Club a long time ago. Modern fiberglass gliders are amazing with 3 times better glide ratio of the T21.

Not called "The Barge" for nothing

Used to sit on the Locking Ridge doing about 45 knots and listening to the dogs barking as I passed over the farmhouse on the top of the ridge.

IG

VP959 10th Nov 2020 09:09

My first ever flight was in a Sedburgh. RAF Halton in the mid-1960s, as a cadet. Never forgotten it. The thing that I remember most clearly about that flight is the wire launch, and the wind noise. For some reason I can't remember the circuit at all.

treadigraph 10th Nov 2020 09:15

Last chapter of the late Derek Piggott's book "Delta Papa" sums up what gliding's all about...

lederhosen 10th Nov 2020 10:02

As an enthusiastic glider pilot (lucky enough to fly an Arcus M) I have recently discovered some you tube videos by Stefan Langer. There are a couple of him flying 1000km through my area in southern Germany as well as some beach flying in New Zealand that was quite literally unbelievable. Modern gliders are so efficient that in good conditions you rarely need to stop and turn in lift, but just speed up through the sink and then zoom climb in the lift. Stefan's video is mostly speeded up so it looks strange to see the vario mainly indicating sink but him maintaining or increasing height, as the short time pulling up barely registers. If you have a few minutes to spare I can thoroughly recommend them. It looks effortless, but I can assure you it is not. It is however indicative of what is possible.

Hot 'n' High 10th Nov 2020 10:10


Originally Posted by Loose rivets (Post 10922951)
....... I was going to say, Not natural, but your post makes it sound like the most natural flying that's ever been.

On a visit to Oz way back now, got checked out at Camden and sent solo (with the sage words "Don't forget the sun is to the North of you here!!") and soon found myself happily zooming heavenwards in what was definitely a "non-UK" thermal. :ok:

Then, way below, I saw this Eagle-type bird following me round in the thermal watching me all the time. Four or five times round the thermal and it had gone from a few hundred feet below me to a few hundred above me ... and was still going up like a rocket! The look of complete distain it gave me as it passed through my level on its way up still haunts me to this day.........

And I thought I'd been doing so well!!!!!! :sad:

As an aside, I G**gled IS-30 and came across an IS-30 on aerotow last year from Gympie, with "QA" on the tail - given up trying to post the URL!!! :ugh: The IS-30 I flew at Camden in Aug '92 was "GQA". Has she, by last year, moved North? Small world if so!!!

Krystal n chips 10th Nov 2020 10:14

Yep, the developments in glider design and cockpit technology are very much to the pilots advantage, however, there still remains one rather basic requirement.

The pilot still has to fly the aircraft.

To quote a well known expression from a few years ago....." get your ass into glass "

And you don't need to get that high to need oxygen......10k was the usual criteria to start using it, however, it was often "suggested " you got ready at about 8k when you were in or approaching wave

"The look of complete distain it gave me as it passed through my level on it's way up still haunts me to this day."

I can empathise with this.....weak Feb thermals over 31 Sqdn's ramp one day, happily slowly going up in a Ka8 and what appears, from left to right and joins me with a combination of bemusement and disdain ?......then it clearly got bored with the entertainment being provided by the human and simply flew off.

Bergerie1 10th Nov 2020 11:24

I remember being airborne in a microlight and being overtaken by a pigeon!!

Krystal n chips 10th Nov 2020 11:33


Originally Posted by Bergerie1 (Post 10923274)
I remember being airborne in a microlight and being overtaken by a pigeon!!

Well it wasn't one of the two I've clattered into the next world, both at the top of the launch, then Ever compassionate, the winch driver, and a couple of helpers, kindly cut ones leg off with the bolt cutters used to cut the cable.............. so they could send the ring back to the owner

blind pew 10th Nov 2020 11:44

Flew at keepit
 
But if you want real flying try rock polishing out of one of the french airfields in the Durance valley, followed by a modern winch launch then glider aerobatics finishing in a beat up below 3 ft. Makes a duck and drive approach in a heavy jet look easy.

esa-aardvark 10th Nov 2020 13:58

Who's that down there ?

Who's that up there asking who's that down there ?

Fitter2 10th Nov 2020 14:12

Blind Pew - totally agree with you. To climb above St Crepin, slide through the Ecrans looking up at the glaciers, cross the valley to the tip of the Vercors range, run up to Grenoble and back to final glide for a cold beer at Serres was one of the highlights of last year's flying. Not this year, damnit. I almost gave up gliding (mostly competitions) 20 years ago when kids who I had first seen in carrycots started beating me, but a trip to the mountains with a friend introduced me to other dimensions of enjoyment

And with regards to the straight line climbing, I took a Ka8 pilot in the back of the ASH25 a couple of years ago, and after climbing once off tow at Lasham, somewhere near Malmesbury a voice from behind asked 'Do you ever bother to circle?'

blind pew 10th Nov 2020 15:38

St Crepin
 
Got low there once and my [email protected] started twitching but I was lucky enough to do a week one to one with Jaques Noel out of Gap...tried to tell my fellow club members in Essex and Suffolk how close to the mountain but they didn't believe me. Did a requalifcation at St Remy en Provence three years ago to fly the grand kids but the work load in the Alps is too much for an old boy.

B2N2 10th Nov 2020 17:49

Started with glider flying at 19 as powered flight was too expensive.
For about 15 years my personal best was 7hrs12min in a K8b


https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/pprune....7d41ea5a4.jpeg
(Not the actual plane, google find)


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