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By Avnav8r
#273370
Hey,

In the March 2012 issue of HG/PG Magazine, I see a promo for the "Zip Glider" that is currently in use in Australia. The promo claims that it was invented there and has been in use for twenty years. It goes to show you that what is old is new again. Some of you "old time" pilots may remember the hang gliding simulator at Raccoon Mt. in Chattanooga. This was the original "zipline" glider and was put in operation in the late 1970s. This glider was launched from a platform on what was the training hill at Crystal Air Sports. It was a small glider, but with a little wind, you could get it flying, albeit still attached to the cable. A lot of pilots and "Wuffos" tried the Simulator. Once, we also had a parachute clinic where we we able to launch the simulator and when a starting pistol was fired, one deployed his chute. It was really fun to feel the chute deploy and after everyone had flown and deployed, we had a repacking clinic. I believe that Dan Johnson came up with the idea and had several Hang Gliding Simulators across the country. The one at Raccoon was eventually moved out on Cummings Highway and LMFP own Shawn Sanders was one of the last operators. I believe the last one I saw a sign for was in Big Bear, California back in 2004. Does anybody know if it is still operational? Anyway, I thought I would pass this along. Does anybody have a photo of the original HG simulator?

John Stokes
www.osceolabaldeagle.com
www.soarsouth.org
Last edited by Avnav8r on Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By TomDunlap
#275869
Thanks for remembering us.

Tom Phillips
Crystal Air Sports
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By Vrezh
#275875
I'v seen the one in Big Bear, Ca a few years ago.

From what I know, it's been closed. They have regular zip lines only.
User avatar
By Avnav8r
#275973
TomDunlap wrote:Thanks for remembering us.

Tom Phillips
Crystal Air Sports
Hey Tom,

Good to hear from you! Do you have any photos of the Simulator? By the way, I put a video on YouTube a few year back called Memphis Pilots at Raccoon Mt
It is rather grainy since it was transferred from some old Super 8 film, but still fun to watch. Do you still get a chance to fly?

John Stokes
www.osceolabaldeagle.com
www.soarsouth.org
User avatar
By TomDunlap
#275994
Hi John, Sure plenty of chances to fly. Not a great deal of motivation these days. I do hang out at Henson's gap a fair amount though so when the urge hits, I can take advantage. Things have sure changed since towing has come to dominate. We at Crystal had a lot to do with that too. ;-)

I'll check out the video and thanks for posting it. Speaking of towing, I put some videos on my blog of us 'inventing' it. Check it out daedelus.typepad.com/blog/2011/06/aero-towing-at-crystal-the-accompanying-video-shows-our-early-crystal-test-flights-the-cosmos-demo-at-stevenson-airport-and.html
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By wwleady
#322545
Image

My first flight....Maybe 1984 Racoon Mountain.
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By dievhart
#322579
AWESOME stuff, thanks for sharing and being test pilots...
Diev
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By SWIFTY
#322604
Hi Tom. When you care to, take a flight at Hensons for me. That's some fun flying.

Yeah flew that in '81 while on the road for WW. Did a chute deployment test and I think it took 3.5 - 4.5 sec. to open chute from sound of gun. Rob K was testing the prototype BRS for Boris and it took 1.5 sec. Sold me on the BRS right then. I did the observing and in air filming and then we'd send the results back to BRS for further tweeks. Crying shame BRS doesn't sell HG systems anymore.

Tim Morley
User avatar
By Strato
#322608
Looking at my log book I got my 2 rating from Paul Burns at crystal in the mid 70s. What ever happened to him?
By Fletcher
#322614
Strato
Back in the late 80s Paul was a Moyes dealer in Lake Elsinore CA, he might still be there.
I did a test chute deployment at Chrystal in 87- fun toy!
User avatar
By Strato
#322638
Back in the mid 70s I took a two week hang gliding trip back east and spent most of it at Crystal. I remember loading our gilders under the tram for the trip up the mountain. If I remember right towards the top we had to shift our weight around to get the gliders to clear a rock.

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