red wrote: ↑
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:08 am
Lazypilot wrote:This means my new glider (notice it's missing the "hang" word) might weigh as much as 254 lbs, the maximum allowed for a POWERED ultralight. Gravity powered ultralights can weigh 154 lbs. I can be legal with only a chainsaw motor that weighs maybe 25 lbs. . . .
All you need now will be cubic dollars, and maybe some patience while it gets built, and ships . . .
. . . oh, yeah, don't forget the trailer
Hi Red! Goober sez hey!
In discussing the BNG (Brave New Glider) design I occasionally fall into the trap of designing a glider that would appeal to the Hg community at large, where weight, portability, set-up/break-down are important. This is fun to mull over but it's not right.
I'm going to be 66 on July the Fourth. While I do feel fairly healthy, I know that I have, at best, a decade left to fly.
I shudder when I think of how fast the last one went by.
I live 9 hiway miles from Crestline launch. My days of driving all over the place to fly are essentially over, I'm just not into that anymore. I ain't dead yet, I still appreciate long legs and short skirts, although I praise the Lord that those are for someone else and I can be a leering old phart without guilt.
The thing is that the BNG is for me, and me alone. I really don't care if I do have to buy a used boat trailer for it, and I really don't care how long it takes to assemble or how many trips from the trailer to the set-up area. It's a hobby, not a job, and there's no clock to punch.
It took a few months to catch on, but now I know that being retired means I don't own a calendar or a watch. What day it is or what time it is means little to me.
What is important to me is: That after waiting 40+ years for someone else to do it I'm gonna have to do it. Big job for a lazy pilot, designing and building a glider that can slow down, speed up, perform rolls and loops and spins with ease, as well as thermal while inverted. All with a G.E.D., I never finished high school, but did make it through the Spartan School of Aeronautics, after swearing to the president that if I graduated I would never bend a wrench on his airplane.
I took a few of the obsolete glider frames out into the yard and laid tubing out on the ground, just to get a feel for how I want to make the thing. Styrofoam fuselage sections with holes and channels to put tubing in, 3 or 4 foot long sections of wing hot wired from foam and having several big diameter leading edge tubes and cross bars glued in to them. Prolly fiberglass the whole shebang too. I'll have a place to put a small chainsaw motor, just in case I go over the 154 limit I can call it a powered ultralight and get credited another 100 lbs, not that I think any official with a scale is gonna come around. And if he does, "Ok sir, just write me the citation and get outta my way I'm ready to launch!"
Hey if anybody has any carbon tubes to donate my tired old back will be grateful.
A retractable wheel that extends down behind me and supports most of the weight, a couple of fiberglass poles to help keep the tips out of the bushes. My legs out the bottom and I run a bit, she lifts and I step on a stirrup that pulls a seat forward and I sit down comfortable like, and the wheel gets retracted up into the belly scoop.
Oh, I guess i forgot to mention that once the basic lay-out is determined, I'm gonna form foam panels to glue on it so it looks like a P-51B, complete with D-Day invasion stripes paint job. Some realistic looking cannon and computer generated sound effects and no one will try to bluff me out of any thermal. And the entire empennage will be red of course....
Maybe you've heard of the RC glider class called PSS, or Power Scale Slope. Rc gliders styled to resemble a powered airplane, I've seen Mustangs, Spitfires, Lockheed Constellations, F-14's complete with swinging wings, you name it they've done it. They are typically "hardcore" slopers, heavy and fast, needing a strong wind on a steep hill. It's where the slopeheads go when they're burned out on the easy stuff the rest of us fly, it's a place where "performance" is a relative term and sissies need not apply. If ya wanna see some scary fast slopers try the Cajon Pass. Bring a helmet. If you bring a Hg they'll love it, as you're unloading someone will say "Hey look! A target!!" Put it back on the truck, the Cajon Pass is a venturi, if it's 15 at Crestline it's 35+ at Cajon. I've flown HG there, yes I once was young and full of piss and vinegar, I'm much happier now...
I was looking at some PSS gliders and it occurred to me that by using a yardstick instead of a ruler I could make one and I would fit in it, right where the radio servo stuff normally goes. A four longeron forward fuselage will be stout enough for me, I'm only 140lbs. I'll finally have the tail assembly I've wanted since 1977, no movable tail surfaces, I'l go "wingeron", with a stick for the right wing and another stick for the left wing. Move 'em individually for turns and rolls, together to slow down or speed up. The FAA says I can stall as high as 27 mph, if it ain't blowing 18+ on launch I'll have to use my Secret Weapon, four big bungees that get stretched one at a time up to the glider, unless of course I use the Jeep, then I can prolly stretch 'em all together. I'm hoping for 0 to 27 mph in a 50 foot pull.
I don't want to go sailplanes, I just want a 103 legal glider that I'm securely strapped into, with a cabin heater and a good stereo and NO RADIOS or GPS or instruments of any kind, just the hill and the wind and the glider and me. That will put the fun back into ridge running in gale force winds, where I'll be the only guy there, no damn jellyfish or slow Hg's! Suits me just fine!
Every time I've flown a slope glider since I took up Hg I've said to myself "Self, why are you so damn lazy? When are you gonna wake up, throw those weight shifty pieces of crap in the trash and build a man-sized one of these go fast slopers? Dontcha wanna fly upside down once in awhile? Dumb flexies with only 60 degrees of bank, and 30 of pitch? Where you pay with your life for being a little slow over the top of that loop? Tumbles! Self, I don't believe that you, the guy that always wanted to really fly, is degrading himself like this! The guy the FAA wrote Part 103 for is busting his ass trying to get a wing back down into a core, as if he'd never heard of good leverage wing warping, as if the Wrights hadn't concluded it was a dead-end street 115 years ago!"
I'll bet that a lot of the guys HGing would easily give up a little convenience if they only knew what it's costing them. And this wanting to fly "like Superman"---Well if your neck muscles look like a barrel I guess an 8 hour proned out flight is Ok, but I lost interest in that a long time ago. I'm looking fwd to not needing an expensive harness.
Hang Gliding evolved in a predictable manner I suppose, I hung in there a long time but now I'm simply not satisfied with it. But then, I was never a "sportsman", I don't care for that term. I'm an Aeronautical Enthusiast and Philosopher, I hate motors of any kind including motorcycles. I sail the damn boat right up into the slip, taking pride in a "spot landing" without ever starting the motor, that's how I feel about them. I nowadays walk 4 miles round-trip to the post office and grocery store, I hate starting the 14mpg Jeep.
You guys can be thankful that I'm likely the only HGer that thinks like this, you won't have to put up with this talk very much, the status quo is good enough for most, just not for me. Way too limited, it was Ok for the first decade or two but it's just a pitiful wreck as far as i'm concerned. Positive G only. After over 40+ years. We outta be ashamed of ourselves, I know I'm ashamed of it. You'd think it really is Rocket Science, but have you ever gone to a homebuilt airplane convention? Plumbers and accountants build 200 mph airplanes in the house and tear out a wall to get it out to the airport, and we think it's crazy to build a simple glider!
I don't mind being flamed on the 'net, in fact I'm proud of it. So flame away, I was voted least likely to succeed and they were right I guess, "They say I'm crazy but I have a good time, life's been good to me this far....".
I would be quiet, but if I don't yak it up I'll never "git 'er done", I have to shame myself into it. It would be easier by far to just shut up and drag the Sensor or Harrier out from under the house, but we all gots to take a stand sometime.
God and Nike both say "Just Do It".