Thursday, December 15, 2011

Flying With Landing Gear

This was an experiment that I could hardly wait to perform and I finally got the chance.  My oldest daughter is finally home from college for Christmas break so I recruited her to film while I flew.  It was a beautiful clear day but the wind was starting to pick up.  I was  rushing to get things done so that I could get out before it got too windy.  I know that I could have waited for the evening calm, but I did not want to risk that the wind would settle and that something else would not interrupt my day.  So out we went and braved the elements anyway.  When we first arrived it seemed that we would luck out with the wind lining up with the walk way.  Well as usual the wind did not flay nice and it had fun crossing at an uncomfortable angle.

Not to be outdone, we flew anyway.  The wind did not make things easy.  After a few attempted take offs (see one of the last videos below) I finally made it into the air.  It was much harder than I expected to taxi in a straight line.  Especially with the wind buffeting the plane from the side, especially when it was just about to get off the ground.

Once in the air, it flew just fine.  The the addition of the landing gear had no noticeable affect in the Wild Hawk's flight.  As the wind was causing the plane to bounce around quite a bit, it might have been masking any affects of the landing gear, but I don't think so.

This first video shows the first successful take off.    I thought sure that I was going to crash into the cable again, but I just pulled back on the stick and luckily had enough airspeed to take off successfully.

This second view shows the first successful landing.  I came in dead stick because it was coming in fast enough and with power would have been too fast.  I know too that this was because I was landing with the wind, but it worked out OK.  I did think for a moment that I was going to land it on the walk way cable, but I made it to the pavement.

This video shows both the take off and landing from the airplanes point of view.  If you would like to see what I did to get this footage see my other blog RD Flying Fun.  I'll be updating it soon with how I modified a cell phone to take this footage.

Like the last time I flew, I had so much fun after the first flight that I just made sure all was still OK and then just took off again.  This was a shorter flight as I didn't want to battle the wind for too long and it was too cold for my daughter and I to stay much longer.

My daughter filmed this flight as well.  The first video is the entire flight from take off to landing since it was such a short flight.  You can see that it took me quite a bit to get it under control, but I made it into the air.

Landing was another issue again.  You can see that it came in on an angle and kind of "crabbed" in.

This video is the second flight from the planes perspective.  You might have noticed by now that the perspective is different than from the ground video.  What I did to get forward facing video had the affect of switching the video left for right.  When the plane is going left in all of these videos from the plane, it's really going right!

OK, this is the, well, blooper video of my failed take offs from the ground our perspective and from the plane's perspective.

Yeah, I could have cut some time out of this video, but I thought it was interesting seeing all of this stuff from the planes point of view.

Ouch, that last one looked like it really hurt but actually nothing bad happened.  I just checked it over and made sure the wing was still in firm (as firm as they can be with this much "experience") and checked the aileron servo connections.

If you liked this my latest blog post, please leave a comment and let me know.  Even if you didn't like it, leave me a comment as to what you didn't like.  Either way, be sure to come back and check for future posts.

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