April 5th, 2010
The forecast for Sunday looked much better than the day. Arriving at the gliderport at 10AM, I was disappointed there weren't any cumulus clouds yet, an indication of rising air. The morning sounding showed an unstable airmass, and that usually means lift early in the day.
But you can never know for certain what the day will bring until you're in the air.
First step for me is to assemble the glider. This isn't nearly as hard as it sounds. In fact, it's easy. It takes about fifteen minutes to put on the wings, the horizontal stabilizer, and the winglets. Gear down, then back the aircraft out of its dolly and it's just a preflight away from launching. Read More >>
March 29th, 2010
Saturday marked the first flight of my Ventus 2 bx 15-meter wingspan sailplane for 2010 - tentatively, a check flight to assess the preventative maintenance I did over the winter. The forecast was for a weak conditions, with blue thermals topping out at 3,900 msl and increasing cirrus cover throughout the day. A short flight close to the airport seemed like a good plan.
I put extra attention into my preflight check. Over the winter, I moved almost every instrument in my panel to a new position, tying to optimize my scan to quickly capture critical information (airspeed, vertical speed, position). It's not unusual to get a tube or wire misplaced, so I checked and double checked all instrument functions carefully. Read More >>