Photo Credit; Tom Shipp
This has not been a good month for glider flying, 8 operation days canceled due to weather, either wind, rain or both with only 42 flights, total flights for the season is 510. Last month we canceled 7 op days and completed 62 flights.
Our soaring season officially closes November 25 and reopens April 1 2020, so if we have some decent flying weather, this will be your last chance for club glider flying. At the end of our November fly day, the crew removes glider seat pans, vacuums the insides, clean gliders (top and bottom) and glider canopies in preparation for annual inspections during the winter months. Insurance will also be changed to storage on the Pawnee and gliders until April 1 2020.
We have a new Private Pilot, Nate Kemppainen completed the oral and flight practical on October 5. Two of our student pilots upgraded to Private Pilot this year, Nate and Mark Geudtner. Have you noticed that more glider pilots are planning their landings such that a wing does not touch the ground upon landing until completely stopped and some like to hold the wings level until the Ops Cart arrives to retrieve them. A little head wind helps to hold the wings level. You may consider not turning off the runway in a cross wind if you don’t want to be pointed in the opposite direction with a damaged wing.
A couple of our club members are purchasing gliders; Steve Rusinowski is purchasing an HpH 304CZ and Bill Lynch is looking at a Standard Libelle. Steve’s ASW19 with winglets will be for sale if a club member is interested. Brian Navarette purchased a Standard Cirrus this year and has been practicing cross-country flying. Cross country glider flying is fun but if you are new to the challenge, get tips from other club members with experience, the club ASW15 is a good cross-country glider. If you are not checked out in the ASW15, you are encouraged to do so.
I don’t remember the last actual rope break other than simulated, for actual or simulated breaks, the tow plane will climb straight ahead so the glider pilot may turn left or right for return to the airport. A little Pawnee fuel will be saved if the glider lands on the parallel runway after a rope break which allows the Pawnee engine to cool before landing on the main runway. The Pawnee must approach RW29 parallel higher to prevent hitting the runway lights with the rope, RW11 parallel is better but obstructed most of the time by the tent or a glider ready for launch.
When turning from base to final keep your aim point on target, nose down and speed up. Outside rudder is OK but inside rudder is a control position for spin training.