Soaring in January

Probably the best thermal soaring day in January I have seen. For a while in the afternoon there was some impressive streeting as in pics below.  Best flight time was 29 minutes in a Puchacz.

Alastair

 

 

The Pawnee paws the clouds! Sunday 20th January.

Finally! The sun dared to show itself and weekend flying resumed.

FLYING – After what seems like a very long time we had the opportunity to field 2 Puchacz, 1 Astir and the K6.
After much labouring by Mark Player and other dedicated members (I am not completely sure how many) the Pawnee returned to the sky today.
After a successful test flight the Pawnee resumed it’s tugging role with tows for a Puchacz and a visiting Shark.
There were 17 winch launches, 2 aerotows and a flight by the motorglider.

CADETS – Potential new cadet recruits from the waiting list visited the club today and I believe 5 were enrolled. Thanks to the committee members behind this initiative and the assistance of Tom & Nicky Pike.

RAVE FOR THE WAVE! – I am reliably informed by the CFI that the sun, moon, sky & earth were scared into alignment by the Pawnee’s return to the skies producing elusive WAVE on the first Puchacz aerotow of the year.  A good omen indeed!

Saturday School!

CLAG! Flying was never on the cards today! January is misbehaving, or at least the weekends are! Unfortunately no repeat of Thursday with cloudbase on the floor.
GROUNDSCHOOL Fortunately as if by magic, a double bill of lectures was planned for today. Firstly Simon Withey, Mendips CFI had the unenviable task of presenting the lecture on Air Law, Laws and Rules & Operational Procedures. An essential but less than exciting subject matter was presented with both enthusiasm and humour.
After a welcome bacon sarnie break the second of our double was presented by the workshop team comprising of Nick, Geoff & Joe. A vital lecture for glider owners covering the EASA Self Declared Maintenance Programme certainly opened a few eyes.
With only 2 Bronze lectures remaining the end is in sight! This will see then the groundschool moving on to the Full Radio Licence Lectures by John Garland.
MAINTENANCE With the multi skilled workshop team lecturing today does not mean there is no maintenance to do! Annuals on club aircraft carry on unabated. Phil our resident Farrier has been hard at work with the electric glue machine sticking metal together! His work on rebuilding a steel and aluminium glider trailer is an impressive sight!

‘Spaced Out’ with Simon Withey
Glider Maintenance Lectures with Nick & Joe (Geoff’s hiding)
Trailer ‘Fettling’
Phil, armed & dangerous!

Club vario upgrade

With much help from Graham today, JKW and FUY have been fitted with S80 varios. They are very easy to use and will really help with soaring. For ease of use there is a simple user guide in JKW.

Sorry about the photo but the contrast of the bright display against the workshop was too much for the camera.

Alastair

Thursday 17th January

A glorious sunny January day saw 15 club members turn out to fly with Steve and Mike instructing for the day with our team of midweek winch drivers Dave, Andy and Nick enabling a total of 29 flights in all with Lesley keeping a tidy log. 2 Puchaz and JKW were out on the airfield, with the first launch at 10.45 and the final launch of the day at 16.07. A strong northly, gusting on occasions  gave plenty of cross wind landing practice. Despite some exceptionally strong sink, Andy (Callahan) managed a very respectable 17 mins solo in the Puchaz, gaining a height of 2.100ft – well done Andy!

Chris (Basham) apart from being an intrepid aviator with the rest of us has taken some great photos of members “basking” in the January sun – albeit being well wrapped up, which when I find out how to post them from my PC we will be able to share them with you all.

Chris Chappell

Midweek flying this week.

Hi All,

Thursday 17th January is looking better than Wednesday. We have instructor and winch cover for Thursday this week. With the weekend just gone not flyable either days, Thursday, weather permitting will be a good day to keep those flying skills current.

If you can make Thursday please let me know – chrischappell@live.co.uk

Chris

(Entered  unsolicited by Mike T as Chris isn’t quite  Blog active yet.  I’m sure she will be soon… )

What’s the best mobile network at The Park now?

Does anyone have good experience of solid mobile phone reception at The Park?  It used to be that O2 had the best (but still patchy)  2G coverage.  Vodafone claims the best 4G on its coverage maps.  Is this borne out in practise?

I’m about to change my phone contract and would appreciate any views from first hand experience please.

Mike T

Not Badgers but Chalk Diggers

Too-windy then too-wet weather made available a team of willing diggers to complete the excavation for the new electricity cabin base.   Thanks to all who contributed.  Lots more chalk was moved so a nice clean space now awaits a container that will be converted to house the new electrical components. Full installation will be at the beginning of March, after which we’ll be able to harvest all that lovely wind and sunshine.

Lots going in the hangar too with FUY having its tail feathers measured plus many sparks as Steve and Mel’s trailer lost its bottom to Phil’s angle grinder.

Mike T

p.s.  Lots of free chalk for anyone who wants it….