Flying of Gliders

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Jan 30, 2009
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The excellent thread about gliders made me want to fly some gliders and try some picture taking too! My flying field is very small and I am always taking a chance with here goes.:rolleyes: First up is a Quest Aurora: on a B6-4....on a C motor I would not get it back on this field!!
LIFTOFF!!! The Aurora is a small shuttle type profile that can be flown from small fields on B motors. On C's it goes out of sight and stays up a LONG time!:(
This may test your eyesight!:cool: If you look to the center, the black dot is the shuttle and the booster and chute are to the left!:confused: :confused: I need a LONGER lens!
Yes it did come down! And took a while to FIND it!:rolleyes: The whitish speck in the center of the picture is the booster chute. The shuttle is to the right just below the right hand tree clump...the tall grass made it hard to find!:mad:
Next is the Quest SHUTTLE INTREPID! I really like this kit! It flys really well for such a small glider! It's difficult to trim, but once you get it right, it flies and flies!!:D :D
LIFTOFF!!!...on a C6-3....this flies so well you would think it was manned!!:eek: I have been tempted to hold a DUMMY radio set like I was CONTROLLING it when I fly it with goes right....turns and goes left....comes over head....goes away a little bit....etc.....all the while never dropping the nose!:cool: :cool:
Here it is has flown OVER me and turned 180 degrees and headed back toward the booster still coming down under chute!!!:eek: :eek: It will make several trips around the field before it comes down!!! It MUST be MANNED!!!:confused:
I LOVE GLIDERS!!!:) It is now about 7:15 and I was waiting for the latest for the wind to die out the most before I tried my BEST GLIDER....the FLAT CAT!!! It has been my most consistant and always boosts straight up and separates into a circling 150' diameter descent...looks like one of those buzzards!!:p
:eek: :eek: I learned something today!! My most consistant performer boosted straight up....separated cleanly.... then went into a power dive and NEVER pulled out.!!!:( I was SO concerned about waiting for the wind to die down later in the day, I was not paying attention to the other factors. What could have caused the power dive??? Later in the day, the humidity got really bad, the air was still, could not walk without your glasses fogging up....all conditions that might provide....NO LIFT!!!! The other gliders are basically wide flat bodies that when balanced just drop out of the sky??? My FLAT CAT is an air-foil wing type that needs LIFT to glide!!! Maybe this is what happened? What do you aero-engineers think?? I do LOVE gliders...they are just temperamental!!!;)
Is it possible that you lost tail weight on the way to the pad?

I've been fortunate enough to get my Flat Cat back after every "misson". Although it once drifted on a thermal for about 10 mins.

Nice picutres. Thanks for report.
The power dive is the disadvantage of having zero incidence between the wing and tail. The advantage is that you get a nice straight boost.

You can avoid this problem by tilting the trailing edge of the glider upward. This will make the glider stall, so more nose weight will be needed to compensate. It also has the disadvantage of making the glider do an inside loop during boost. One solution to this problem is to make the pop pod very long--like my mini version of the Flat Cat.

The thick air may have added enough drag that the glider was pointed down during ejection--you want the glider pointed up or level so it doesn't get into a dive it can't pull out of. Never use a long delay engine with a stock Flat Cat.

In theory, you can measure how much tilt or incidence you need by dropping the glider straight down from a high point and seeing whether it pulls out or not. OTOH, this is an easy way to break your glider. :(
With some CA the Flat Cat is back together. The wings were not damaged at all, just the fuselage snapped in 3 places. Several times before, repaired Flat Cats ended up flying BETTER than before! I believe Zach Lau nailed it on what happened!:eek: Since I was looking through the camera, I did not get a good look at the separation but it did seem as though the Cat was in a dive at separation due to the heavy air! There is NO elevator adjustment on a Flat Cat, so it can't pull out of a dive!!:eek: All good flights before, it just rolled away at separation and began a glide. I believe I have never seen a Flat Cat lower its nose and PULL UP! After gluing back together, and a little more nose weight(2 BBs) it balances right here. I added more weight because it did not glide well in hand tossing after rebuilding. I would like to know where any other successful Flat Cats balance! Here is hands glides very flat at this balance point:
Another shot of the hand-toss....not to easy by yourself...throw hard the glider...pick up the with the @#%& digital DELAY....take a shot before it comes down!!!!:mad: :mad:
Since I am still in GLIDER mood, yesterday late I went out and launched two more gliders. First up is one that has seen LOTS of GOOD flights....and LOTS of BAD flights!!! When it is good it is GREAT....if you get a straight boost....otherwise it just LOOPS into the ground! The boost pod has about had it....since it comes down on a streamer and is fairly heavy, it is crimped so much now that it is not very straight. I just keep wrapping it with tape to stiffen it. My best technique is to angle the launch rod back so the glider will LOOP over into the wind. This also lets the ignition wires fall free from the tail during boost.:eek: OH yea, this is the Estes TRANS-WING SUPER-GLIDER::) :)
LIFTOFF!!!...on a C6-3...the 3-sec delay is a little long...could benefit from something more like 2-sec....might keep more height with a shorter delay. You cannot tell, but the rod is angled toward you maybe even 60-70 degrees to help with the LOOPING and get the most upward boost. The wings are folded over like the wings on planes on aircraft carriers, and fold out with rubber bands on separation from the booster!!!:cool: :cool:
The boost was fairly straight and upward, separation was good, wings unfolded right. Getting the right tension with the rubber bands is critical....not enough tension and the wings will not unfold in the moving airstream....too much tension and the wings will pop out of their tape hinges....both resulting in a crash. The longer delay took the glider about 150' away from the pad....and I am not sure about the height. Here it is beginning its glide about 230' away and, of course, ACROSS THAT ROAD!!!:mad:
It was a really good flight, just 200' away!!! That always seems to be the case with this rocket!:( It made several slow rounds and worked its way back across the road into the field that I was in and finally caught its stabilizer on the bare limbs in the tree on the right hand side of this shot about 5' off the ground. It got a nick in the leading edge of one side of the big deal!;)
Next I was going to launch a SILVER HAWK and the Estes SHUTTLE EXPRESS. It was getting dark and trying to find ONE glider in tall grass is hard at dusk...let alone I just settled on the SILVER HAWK. This little FOAM outfit is one that I use with out much worry about LOSING!!!:p It just keeps coming back!:confused:
LIFTOFF!!!...on a mini A10-3T....I don't understand what happened to HOLVERSON, original design in balsa, but this series of gliders are really JUNK!!!....but it DOES fly!:confused: :confused:
And as the sun sets slowly in the west, we see our piece of foam JUNK floating MAJESTICALLY toward the ROAD!!!:D :D GO BABY GO!!!!;) ;)

Page 225 of the Handbook of Model Rocketry (6th edition) shows a Estes glider called the "Strato Blaster".
I've never heard of, nor seen this model before.
Anyone have any info on this? I've looked backward through the old catalogs and haven't found any references.
It' a cool looking bird and since I already have R/C experience, it would certainly make a great project for my first trek into gliders...

Thanks in advance....
Steward, you can get a strato-blaster from Estes is called the T25 CENTURIAN BOOST GLIDER now. It comes ARF now too! My Dad has the older STRATOBLASTER which came out in the 90's from Estes. It was launched on the D11-Ps and never got enough height to do anything but circle and come down. Later we got the RMS RC system form AEROTECH before they burned. It is in the E-power range and we got good height out of it till my Dad tried some aerobatics and destroyed the glider. It has been rebuilt and if Aerotech ever makes more RC E-reloads for the case, we may try it again! I could probably take a picture of it if you are interested.
the strato-blaster was one of the first "production" RC/RG models, contrary to billeblur's experience, I've seen several decent flight with aerobatics, I guess it dependend on the pilot and how the models was built. I alway thought they were just to expensive so I'm only now getting into RC/BG's

As a matter of fact, there is a strato blaster in the lawrence ks toy store on Mass St, just FYI.