Another grungy day. Cloud down to the ground when it seemed pretty clear all around us. The Park Doom Cloud!
Most people predicted it correctly and chose to do other things. The self selecting few did some odd jobs then left site by about 2.30.
Let’s hope for better on New Year’s Day when Alastair will be presiding.
Happy New Year to both (?) our readers.
I wonder how many people are receiving and reading these Blog messages. It’s a medium we should grow in 2019 if we can as it does allow easy message sharing access to and by all members who’d like to be in touch.
Another no fly Saturday, but the flying stats show we are lucky to fly one day in four in December, so it can only get better now.
Plenty of Hangar action though. LPM is rigged but the mice have had a chew of the straps, which will need to be replaced. Mark Player has been working on the Pawnee’s Annual and is nearing the end of the task now.
We are expecting to fly on New Year’s Day.
Message from Mike Jenks
The weather tomorrow looks hopeless for gliding, with low cloud and drizzle.
I have therefore cancelled flying and have stood down the duty team.
I will be at the airfield a.m. should anyone wish to do any groundschool.
If we have sufficient manpower, LPM needs to be rigged.
Better luck next time.
24 glider launches and three motor glider flights, on a windy day with a few light showers and several rainbows. Who needs Christmas lights?
Steamy canopies stopped play at about 15.30.
A Very Happy Christmas to and from all at BWNDGC.
After a ‘pitch inspection’ following the copious rain on Saturday we fielded 2 Puchacz and 1 Astir with a valiant attempt by the motor glider.
Unfortunately the forecast weather materialised earlier than anticipated which put paid to flying prematurely with the aircraft put to bed at 12:15!
The final flight from a total of 5, being abandoned after launch as a wall of water was observed heading for the park! Unfortunately the motor glider only achieved a taxi ride from the hangar to the launch point as the conditions deteriorated.
Meanwhile the workshop and members are busy carrying out annual maintenance tasks on club gliders, private gliders and the Pawnee tug.
As is often the case, Sundays have a great deal of spare flying capacity and today was certainly no exception!
No surprise about the lack of flying today, but we had a good attendance for the first of the Bronze lectures. It was great to see a contingent from Mendip at the club for the course.
Steve Lambourne set everyone thinking about how wings produce lift – and it’s not the way many suspected. Mark Player gave a talk on Human Performance. (Not sure what he would say about Steve’s beverage though……)
The hangar and workshop of course were full of fettlers. Graham and Stuart I noticed were installing some fancy electronics in FUY’s radio microphone which will improve its operation.
As of this morning the Lasham fund has reached £56000, but still needs further support to reach the target of £100000. Please consider making a donation to the Lasham Airspace Campaign if you have not yet done so. If everyone in just our club donated the cost of a winch launch that would be significant. It may seem unimportant but has the potential to greatly affect all of us and threaten all areas of general aviation.
Well it didn’t rain and the field was dry enough to use. We filled up one log sheet with 2 seater flying, Astir and Venture flights.
The elusive wave remained just so, although there were promising clouds and bits of reduced sink.
About a dozen of us enjoyed a chilly but respectable day on the field, with Mike Jenks instructing, Graham Hoile and Andy Huggins winching, and Chris Chappel making sure we all turned up and behaved. Thanks for organising us Chris. She’s been given detailed instructions on how to write a Blog post today so let’s all look forward to her first efforts shortly…….
Indoors, on the new floor, Mark Player began the Tug annual in ernest. The bottom fell out of Steve Lambourne’s trailer. Geoff and Phil were doing stuff in the hangar.
After the previous night of overindulgence a few optimists and the duty team assembled in very windy and uninviting conditions.
The decision was taken to delay starting until such time as the weather improved as forecasted. This provided an ideal opportunity to rig JKW in the hangar which duly fell together aided by the super smooth billiard table floor (thanks Mick).
A late start at 13:00 with a single puchacz saw a total of just 9 launches and 39 minutes flown. The conditions were character building to say the least with a 15-20 knot crosswind and 35 knot component at altitude. An incredibly fast downwind leg coupled with the increased approach speed ensured everything happened rapidly.
Unfortunately the last cable was sent home empty handed due to the returning liquid sunshine and the hangar doors were closed at 16:00.
It was intriguing to see that our neighbours at Keevil managed individual flights of 2.5 hours ridge bashing today with some venturing as far as Wroughton and utilising the Ridgeway. It just goes to show that optimism in gliding pays off!
Christmas is officially under way at the Park. Last night’s excellent dinner party prepared by Julie and John Hull was enjoyed by over 40 of us.
The rain hammered down on the roof but we were warm and cosy, fortified by Julie and John’s super food, wine supplied generously by Clive, and pre dinner tipples supplied from the Bar.
Presents, prizes and cards were distributed. Chairman Martin presented flowers and bottles to Julie and John thanking them for their considerable efforts in preparing for and running the evening. Special mentions also to Mick for managing the new floor laying and to absent friend Sue for her continuous work throughout the year in the club’s catering, bar and so many other things.
2nd half of hanger floor has now been cut, more water used to cut down dust so floor is now very wet even though we swept out as much as possible, be aware of slipping on our new ice rink.
Drains from around South side of hanger and cabling for power supply now laid and covered, Beware if you go around there, two deep leaf traps that have been put in near base of gutter downpipe are still open, new covers on order and should be at club Saturday.
Drain across hanger apron will sink a bit in time and contractors have put more stone on the muddy part of apron.
Mick was on site early again, to get contractors digging a channel outside the south side of the hangar. This will house new electrical cables and water drainage pipework. They will continue work tomorrow.
Unfortunately, the other team of contractors did not arrive to cut the expansion slots in the southside hangar floor. Hopefully, they will turn up to complete the job tomorrow.
Many of you will have seen in the BGA December News that Lasham Gliding Society’s application to the High Court for leave to apply for a Judicial Review has been granted by a High Court judge. This is good news for all of us affected by unreasonable and disproportionately large grants of controlled airspace that affect our safety as glider pilots and our ability to enjoy our sport.
Lasham are continuing to crowd fund the resources they need to argue the case. Details are here https://www.lashamgliding.com/pages/airspace-campaign . I hope some at least of us will want to contribute however little to support a cause important to us all.
Request from the Chair:
We expect the concrete floor to be finished by Tuesday and will then be in a position to rig the Astirs, BNH and the Venture. We will also put the lockers etc back in place. We would welcome help from anyone able to be there on Wednesday. Nick will also want to bring in FUY for its ARC, and he says that the workshop needs a good clean out first.
Sunday’s weather was worse than forecast so no flying. Workshop activity as usual and some digging around the site while the new hangar-floor continues to dry off.
Maybe Weds will be flyable….
Second day of meteorological winter!
Forecast looks as if flying might be possible if the showers hold off. Possible ridge day? We need to make what we can of days this time of year, so the duty team will be there. Mike T
Another unflyable Saturday, but as my last four duty days have been the same, there was no surprise there.
Plenty of activity around the hangar though with a planning meeting and glider fettling in progress.
The hangar concrete has been sealed, so I think it should be OK for rigging of gliders tomorrow.
The second half of the hangar was completed yesterday and looks really good.
The hangar floor second half will be concreted today Tuesday 27th Nov. Thanks to Mick Longhurst, Alec Thomson and Andrew Simpson for getting there at crack of dawn to get the kit out of the hangar.
See Facebook page for 12th Nov for what happened in phase 1.
I see that Christine Chappell advises that there will be no flying tomorrow on account of the vile weather forecast, but that Mike Jenks will be available for ground schooling for those who wish to take the golden opportunity.
Following on from Saturday’s wash / grey out, an exceptionally grey and dismal Sunday offered little promise at the outset. Being eternal optimists we fielded 2 Puchacz at the far end of a draughty field. Hmm whats the cloudbase? We all settled on around 700ft and we were spot on although this did lift (a bit).
All in all a very practical short flying day with more practice launch failures than full circuits! 14 winch launches with a total flying time of 40 minutes and maximum height achieved of 1280ft AGL.
Meanwhile in the clubhouse those who sensibly decided to keep warm attended the first winter series lecture on the subject of cloud flying. The workshop meanwhile continued with vitally important and relentless maintenance tasks on club and private aircraft alike!