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Soaring over the Flint Hills
One of my favorite flights of 2013 was one that allowed me to explore some new territory, parts of Kansas which I have never seen from the cockpit of a glider. Many KSA members will recall that July 19th, 2013 was “The Day” of 2013. Several pilots flew at Sunflower on long flights and/or record or badge attempts. At that time the NG-1 was in its trailer at the Wichita Gliderport so I decided to fly from there. I was very grateful for the help of Leah and Gavin Smith who both helped me rig the glider on Thursday night in preparation for the flight the next day. I emailed my boss to let him know not to expect me at work on Friday, and Bill Ashby agreed to give me a tow. My task was going to be a 300km triangle, aiming for a KSA speed trophy and a Wooden Wings claim. Turnpoints would be Emporia and Fredonia More ...
Posted: 1/2/2014 By: Tony Condon
South African Nationals
Report on SA Nationals at Welkon SAMore ...
Posted: 11/25/2013 By: Ian McFall
The Sparrowhawk and I
My incredible Sparrowhawk adventure started in May when Chip Garner called me at work and asked if I’d be interested in flying a Sparrowhawk at the 13.5 Meter Super Regionals in August. Well, of course! I had given a little thought to the contest but up until that point had pretty much decided against going due to vacation time constraints. However this offer was just the motivation I needed to make it happen anyway. More ...
Posted: 10/11/2013 By: Tony Condon
CFI-G Soaring Society of America Instructor
I have finally completed my CFI-G w/ Russ Hustead at Sky King Soaring (excellent instruction and aircraft there), and became an SSA Instructor! It's been a long road with several diversions such as becoming a CFI for airplanes, getting endorsed for tailwheel + complex + high performance airplanes, and becoming a tow pilot. Both the journey and the destination are well worth it. I'm so glad I did it. More ...
Posted: 9/30/2013 By: Kevin Johnson
Diamond Distance Kowbell Win
Here is the story of my 2013 flight for the Kansas Kowbell Klassic. This was my 5th Kowbell attempt and first time to win the coveted Kowbell. This was also my first successful Diamond Distance flight after many attempts in the last 8 years of flying straight out distance flights. More ...
Posted: 7/10/2013 By: Tony Condon
Talihina, OK weekend
Here is the story of my weekend in Talihina, OK Feb. 16 & 17, 2013. Enjoy!
Posted: 2/22/2013 By: Tony Condon
Slip Slidin' away
More 'Slip' exploration this weeked. Feels strange in a slip. I'll get some decent video and post up ASAP. The yaw string really goes over a LOT!
Posted: 9/10/2012 By: James Wynhoff
Janus C flight impressions
First, you should know I'm not one of the 'old hands' at soaring. I started in 2001, and have just around 1,000 hours now. I haven't flown a huge number of gliders. More ...
Posted: 8/10/2012 By: James Wynhoff
While going through the Janus to get it ready for it's annual inspection of condition, I pulled the Oxygen bottle. Long story short, it was a 3HT bottle, with a 24 year life span, and it was 33 years old. I shopped around, and found a 60 cubic foot bottle, with the correct valve assembly, here:http://www.discountcarts.com/M60-size-Aluminum-Cylinder-_p_133.html More ...
Posted: 7/30/2012 By: James Wynhoff
Janus C is flying
After 14 months of work (okay, there was really about a 3 month period of no real work) the Janus passed it's inspection of condition, and was returned to service. Refinishing the tops of the main wing panels was... quite a chore. The gelcoat was stripped by chipping, not sanding. This went amazaingly quickly. I would estimate under 40 man-hours per wing. I had really expected to spend a lot more time than that getting the old gelcoat off. There was a large delay, waiting for the CNC cut profile templates. During that waiting period, my brother and I bought a place at Sky Ranch. A 1400 sf hangar, with a 1110 sf house. Shortly after moving the project there, I got my templates and started really putting in the hours. There was some repair work to some previous repair work near the root of the left wing, then I had to build up (with Super Fill) some parts fo the wing where the gelcoat had been particularly thick. There was quite a lot of work to do right around the spoilers. After the profiling, I tackled filling the pinholes. I used PCL Polyprimer, a brush, and a six inch wide bondo squeegee to squeegee the primer into the holes. After three passes, knocking down the ridges left by the squeegee between each coat, the pinholes were gone. Then I sprayed a heavy coat of Polyprimer on, let it cure, and knocked it down with 150 grit on a 48" x 2" wide sanding bar. I used 3m Dry Guide to mark my progress and reveal the low spots. Two more coats of Polyprimer later, and a final sanding with 220, I felt the wings were ready for the PPG Concept. Wow! That stuff is pricey!! Shooting the paint took about 4 hours for each wing. The subsequent sanding and buffing took...... a lot more than that! More ...
Posted: 7/30/2012 By: James Wynhoff