Ever have one of those days when you really want to go to the field, but now that you shouldn’t. Well yesterday was one for me.
I arrived at the field around 10 am, weather ok, winds very low. Shortly after arrival, a single cloud opened up and it started to rain. Another sign that flying was not in the cards for me. But I waited it out and the rain stopped.
I have been resurrecting an aircraft that Bill Bowen passed on, a beautiful BlueHawk bi-plane. The resurrection finished out very good, the plane looked great. So today would be its Maiden Flight.
Started the engine, warmed it up, did a bit of tuning and then off to the runway. A bit nose heavy, but controllable, I raised the throttle and headed down the runway for a fairly uneventful take off. As I climbed out, I noticed she was a bit heavy on the right side and needed a bit of left aileron to maintain level flight. Not a problem, continued to climb and make my right turn in preparations for trimming. As I came out of the turn, still climbing, the aircraft decided to do a trick of its own, an inverted dive. With little altitude to correct, the impact with the ground was inevitable. Picture below shows the rest of the story.
After collecting the wreckage, I brought out my back up plane for the day. A high wing trainer that I have flown many times. I had just finished a modification to the wing mounting, by adding wing bolts and wood pins to hold the wing on. Was kinda tired of searching for and using the rubber bands.
So, off to the sky, flying pattern circles, figure eights, and then loops. First loop ok, second loop not so much. A the plane came to the top of the loop, the main wing decided to exit the airplane floating gracefully to the ground. The rest of the plane became a high speed lawn dart.
So, I loaded the truck with what I had left, gathered all the debris and headed home, to where no doubt, I should have stayed.
Today was, according to the local weather, to be a partly sunny day with a high of 51. With that in mind a few of us headed to the field to do some long awaited flying.
We arrived at the field at around 10:30 to find a bit of fog with and outlook of clearing and becoming sunny. Little did we know that Mother Nature had something else in mind.
John and I assembled our planes. Weather still promising to change. I got my Pulse XT fired up and on the runway. Just as I took off, the wind changed to the north and the fog blew in. Almost loosing site of the plane I was able to turn at the end of the runway and successfully make it back on the ground. John got his plane fired up and headed to the runway. Take off successful, but just as I experienced, the fog captured the sky. He was able to negotiate a turn and back to the runway safely.
Bob made a successful short flight after some struggling with his radio and plane, George had a couple of great flights with his helicopter and Scott made it look easy, obviously the fog did not bother him at all during his two successful flights. He did have a bit of a challenge with a new to him plane during the ground test. Throttle up, plane moved backwards. Back to the hanger for an adjustment.
Weather never changed, the wind and fog stayed, the temperatures hovered around 37 degrees, so the crew was done and complete early in the afternoon.
Pictures curtesy of Camille Page. Thanks to all, and see you next time.