Wednesday, December 3, 2008

New Information on Fossett's accident

I was contacted by the NTSB a short while back. The above RUC blipmap is now from the DATE of Fossett's accident (Sept. 3, 2007). You may "click the pic" to enlarge it. This blipmap is of the correct day, year, and shows its correct time. Due to personal health reasons of certain folks, and privacy rights, its the best I can do for now. I believe each of you should and will understand this. Thanks for doing so.
Its the "vertical wind shear" in the boundary layer blipmap. I had been thinking of heading back to Ely for some late summer flying, and had been reviewing the blipmaps over this period of time (Sept. 2007). When I saw the "mid morning" NAM on this day,( remember the above blipmap is RUC), the vertical wind shear areas had alarmed me, because of 2 areas, the first was over Elko, NV and had a radius of maybe 25 miles and was solid red and showed vertical wind shear greater than 50 plus kts. The other area was around and to the best of my recall, maybe Lake Crowley and was also in red, but with a much smaller radius.
I contacted the NTSB after they found the crash site and a short time ago they contacted me. We went over what I remembered and they then contacted Dr. Jack. The good news is Dr. Jack has all the numbers for those days and will be reconstructing new charts on a much greater resolution. The ruc is 13 km's and in that area are not of much help. His new charts (NEWS FLASH....these new maps have been reproduced and due to privacy rights they can not be displayed now, BUT will be displayed when able. They are superior and trump the blipmap above). These will have better resolution and maybe, repeat, maybe, give more needed information for the area on that day.
Also, the rapid responce satelite, which is used for firefighting, does have satelite photos of the area on that day, I have seen these photos, which I believe were taken at 11 am local time. I am looking for my link to their web page.
Also, on the OLC several flights are posted for this day. Who they are, along with their comments might surprize you, along with where they landed that day.
I am sharing this and am not suggesting or speculating on Fossetts accident, and will wait for the NTSB and what their final findings are.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Australian Qualifying
11/30/2008 thur 12/06/2008 with live daily tracking.
Gliding Grand Prix, Narromine, NSW, Australia
1, 30.11.2008, Preliminary results
Australian Gliding Grand Prix 2008
Narromine Start - Peakhill - Yeoval - Warren - Tooraweenah - Microwave - Narromine Finish
Task length: 450.4km
Regatta start time : 14:05:00
Ichikawa Makoto
ASG 29/18m
Sommer Michael
Ventus 2cT/18m
Brigliadori Riccardo
ASG 29/18m

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Jet substainers

Been watching the development of these over the last few years. Here's AMT's site where you can find information on the Titan UAV.

Basicly, the 88 lbs thrust engine, at full thrust, burns .31 gals per minute. Thats a sea level burn rate, as you climb, your burn rate does drop, yet the thrust almost remains the same. With 10 gals this gives you a run time of 40 minutes. Range should be somewhere around 100 miles while cruisng, or maybe alittle more doing climbs and glides. Climbs should be around 250-300 fpm. Gas substainers weigh more, as the Jet weighs 10 pounds plus fuel of 60 pds or around 75 lbs with a tank. The gas engine substainer weighs about 95 lbs, so their is a weight savings.
Also with the this Jet engine, you can do a short auto tow, maybe a climb to 2,000 agl, and still have enough fuel for 30 minutes of cruise, or 60-70 miles.

If you look at the factory cost of an added substainer gas engine, it about 20,000 euros more, which at the present exchange rate is over $27,000 USD's. Also, the gas substainers have a hard time at western altitudes to get home on. Several at Ely have used their substainers but to get back into the valley its a hold your breath experience.

The other Jet engine is 150 lbs thrust. But I have been watching this for well over 3 years and I have been lead to believe its still in development and completion could be aways off.

I think the AMT Jet Titan, at 88 lbs thrust, is a way to go if your thinking about a substainer, installation should also be pretty simple, so costs maybe something to explore.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Search for Fossett

Its a 5 page article in National Geographic about a year ago........................part of a quote......and a link to the whole article.

The Final Flight

In mid-September a psychic was brought to the Flying M. "You are needing me," she reportedly told those there. Fossett had encountered engine trouble, she said. He tried to find a safe landing place but crashed into a mountainside. "He is in a dark place, covered with white, powdery dirt, with one arm hanging out." The psychic was operating in the realm of pure conjecture, but so, too, were investigators. And almost every theory formulated had numerous sensible reasons against it.

Special Report: Steve Fossett - National Geographic Adventure Magazine

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Humor on Speeding...............

Top This One For A Speeding Ticket

Two California Highway Patrol Officers were conducting speeding enforcement on I-15, just north of the Marine Corps Air Station at Miramar . One of the officers was using a hand held radar device to check speeding vehicles approaching the crest of a hill. The officers were suddenly surprised when the radar gun began reading 300 miles per hour. The officer attempted to reset the radar gun, but it would not reset and then turned off.Just then a deafening roar over the treetops revealed that the radar had in fact locked on to a USMC F/A-18 Hornet which was engaged in a low flying exercise near the location.
Back at the CHP Headquarters the Patrol Captain fired off a complaint to the USMC Base Commander. The reply came back in true USMC style:Thank you for your letter. We can now complete the file on this incident.You may be interested to know that the tactical computer in the Hornet had detected the presence of, and subsequently locked on to your hostile radar equipment and automatically sent a jamming signal back to it, which is why it shut down.Furthermore, an Air-to-Ground missile aboard the fully armed aircraft had also automatically locked on to your equipment location.
Fortunately, the Marine Pilot flying the Hornet recognized the situation for what it was, quickly responded to the missile system alert status and was able to override the automated defense system before the missile was launched to destroy the hostile radar position.The pilot also suggests you cover your mouths when cussing at them, since the video systems on these jets are very high tech.Sergeant Johnson, the officer holding the radar gun, should get his dentist to check his left rear molar. It appears the filling is loose. Also, the snap is broken on his holster.Thank you for your concern.Semper Fi.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

2008 Lusse race reports

Refreshments delivered on Time

At 32 ° the arrival of those dark thunder clouds, which have formed within the last half hour is most welcomed. A few kilometers further on the rain is pooring down just for a few minutes - enough to cool down the earth to comfortable 24 ° - with little steam clouds rising everywhere.
Talking to "US Ground Control"

Team Captain Sam Zimmerman is fully established in Luesse. The entire US crew has already arrived with most of them up in the air enjoying this hot sunny day. Doug Jacobs had just picked up his new Ventus 2aX "DJ" from Schempp. Tilo Holighaus lent the very first serial No. 1 Ventus 2 to Gary Ittner, who will be flying in the 15m Class. Heinz Weissenbuehler had his Nimbus 4T shipped from New York State. And Karl Striedek flies Gerhard Waibel's ASW27. Garret Willat managed to get an ASH25 from the Netherlands. Quite an internation glider collection!

Bustling activities all over the place. Trailors coming from everywhere. Tents being put up, helpers busy getting everything into place. Those, who have already installed themselves are enjoying a hot summer day - 32 ° with the first cumuli setting in at noon. Take a look at our pictures. They show what's happening here.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

"Godspeed" to the Willat family

and to the US Team in Lusse, Germany during the 2008 World Soaring Championships. The above named individuals pledged support for Garret and his family in their travels to Lusse, Germany.

This plaque will be on display at the Warner Springs Gliderport office.

I thank everyone for their support and during my flights to get the mileage pledges, I do have a few memories to add to my soaring adventures.

Also, many "kudos", to the all the folks at Seminole Lake Gliderport, Perry International airport, Mifflin airport, Alamogordo airport and Parowan airport who helped tow and launch 711 for all these flights.

Shortly, the 15 Meter Nationals, along with the Open Class Nationals will be going on in Uvalde, Tx. When I get their in a few days, I will again post what I see is happening.

I was in Ely, Nv earlier, and had several good flights. But alot of smoke from the fires in California put somewhat of a damper on the long flights I had been hunting for. Ely Jet center caters to our needs and James, along with his staff, are again thanked for the service they provided. Ely now has been not only groomed, but has support for a major National Championship. I believe when Ely does host a National Championship, we will see not only one day, but several days of AST's called, which will produce 1000 k to 1250 k flights, slowest speed 100 mph, and we will see 100 percent completion's.
Folks, thats how big the sky in "The Great Basin" can get.
More later on this.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

18 Meter Nationals Rain day May 21, 2008

Well, we put them together, rolled them out for a 1 pm grid. Then mother nature changed her mind and then we pushed them back, dumped our water and got them in the box. Its really windy now, rain showers are passing and the worst stuff isn't here .......yet.

What I have seen so far on the view side of this blog.

Bill Elliot is flying extremely well. Making good judgements are primarily the reason he's in first. Also, fellow racers, he reads the rules and knows what he can and cannot do. Also, this past winter, Bill has been studing numerious articles, which has helped his contest flying. Maybe to put it in the best light, his desire to win has made him explore all avenues to make him a better competition pilot.

I have seen some posts on the JS1 sailplane here at Mifflin. I do think its best to remember, that the V2CX and V2CXT, along with the ASG 29 and the JS1, have all won one day, as we have had 4 days. The fastest speed posted was 133 mph by P7 flying a ASG 29. The verdit from this reporter is I haven't flown with the JS1, but do believe all the current generation 18 Meter ships are very close together in climb and glide. My fellow racers I spoke with all shared the same feelings. The workmanship and quality of the JS1 is of the same level as the current 18 Meter ships, which is outstanding.

What I have seen is the current 18 Meter ships out climb the 15 Meter ships when carrying full ballast ( I weighted 1275 lbs, which is 50 pds below max gross) and we can slowly catch and pass the 15's on the ridge. On one ridge day as I passed UH, my gear dropped several times, which was not done on purpose, as turbulence caused it. But UH did bring it up several times, all in fun, as I blew by him. On all days here, the newer 18's did show that without climb, you get no glide.

I also think our rules committee should consider giving maybe a small 3 percent kick to the 15 Meter crowd to encourage them to attended the 18 Meter Nationals and for regional contests a 4 percent kick to their speed to keep our regional contests better attended. Just my 2 cents, but the score sheet here in Mifflin supports this. As costs rise for all of us, we need to do what we can now, to continue to seed our contests, so our contests have a chance to "break even" on costs.

Well, its pouring rain now, the day has been cancelled several hours ago and my thinking is that "The lady has sung her last song, turn out the lights, the contest is over." As folks are leaving now, it maybe a bit early, as we do have one day left, but our current leader could very well have his first 18 Meter National Championship in the bag.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Sunday May 11,08 Mifflin CLICK the pics.......

Corey Sullivan, yes, we do have young pilots, he's 18 ladies, and flying a V2BX
His office.............
another of where he works...........ha...........
KS, and some of the grid folks............. MD is what Corey's flying, KS running the wing........

Sunday May 11,08 Mifflin practice

P7 US Team member Gary Itner and his ASG 29

1st practice day..P7 Ittner, Gary ASG-29 1 719 133.60 378.94

Thats ....133.6 mph ....distance 378.94 st. mi .....11 turn mat 1st place.

His office..........
Charlie "lite" working and holding P7 wing
P7 on the roll..........

Saturday, May 10, 2008

CLICK the pics.... Mifflin 08

Electric taking off................ CLICK the PICS and they get BIG

prepractice staging

Just north from the airport where the Antares took electric, running water........or computers..........

and more pics 18 Meters Mifflin

UH getting taped...............

UH new tips........just adding a bit to a 27................

more pics 18 Meter Nationals prepractice

8H...Al Tylers ASG 29......
His nickname by someothers, other than me, "OLC slut"..........

Hmmmmmmmm......whats UH got going on??????
UH has added something new to his ASW 27.........look at the tip it a bug collector or will it really work? Is this a 27 with 2cx enveeeeeee???

18 Meter Nationals Mifflin 2008

Butch, towpilot Mifflin and his Husky
SZ, Sam pushing out...........
W3 on the roll.......Tim Wells

Saturday afternoon, the sun appears and prepractice launching begins. Many smiles as its looking to be a good day.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

80 degree's & summer's coming

This will me..............

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Rest Day news and views R5N Perry

Today, Tuesday, was called off because of a upper level low spinning off the Carolinas bring us low, solid cloud cover. We did grid, and our CD called a 12 noon meeting on the grid to talk about maybes or what ifs. The satelite picture really did tell the story and won with the day called at 1 pm. A few tried local soaring, some simply fell out and landed shortly after release.
The top picture is sunset this evening and the bottom is of Skip Pate, P8, who is an advisor, and of his 2 lovely daughters. Skip flys for US Airways, and is base manager in CLT.
The rest of the week looks good as the low is moving out of the area and all the racers are ready to go. Theirs a shoot out going on in all the classes and if you go to the SSA website you will see what I mean. Yesterday, we did have some landouts, but good news was no damage.
We do have 8 new folks who are at their first regional event and this is good. All have top mentors and get daily briefings. UH, Hank Nixon, even heald a class for the new guys and spent several hours going over racing ideas and things to think about.
Remember, coming to a National, such as Mifflin, which is hosting the 18 Meter Nationals, is experience which shouldn't be pasted up. Even if you don't have an 18 Meter ship, you will still gain racing experience in the area and trust me on this, you have a chance to win if you come. Staying home won't get you on the score sheet, and that a fact. XX himself took 10 years to win a National, so Mifflin still has slots available. Its a top site, and one really great ridge day will hook you, for sure, for the remainder of your racing career. So, jump in and give KS an email while some slots are still available.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

OK, photo contest....winner, contest over

On the flag pole, along side the flag, is a wireless repeater. click the pic and it enlarges. The windsock is new. BV working with TA guessed the right answers.
Again, first one who emails me with the winning answer, gets a brewster.

This one is easy. You need only tell me what the 2, yes two, new items are in the photo, along with where they are located. If you can tell me what one new item is and what its being used for, then I'll give you a 6 pack of brewsters. Hint, "go climb a flag pole", could help out with the windy times.

Saturday Region 5N Perry 4-19-08

Today, Saturday, 45 pilots have registered for the Region 5N contest so far. More are on the field, including some that are on the standyby list. Today, some weather that is unfriendly towards us, is moving threw the area. But for the contest period, it looks really good and tomorrow, Sunday, will be a practice day.
This last week ,we had one stellar day. 8H, owned by Al Tyler, led the way with a 595 K. flight on this last Tuesday. Its on the OLC, including flights by SZ, TO, and 711. The day was filled with hard bottom cues with bases over 8500 msl. 8H reported way above Spartenburg that he had not only reached the mountains, but had climbed to 10,000 msl. 711 reported thermals were climbable below 600 agl as he barely got out of the airport area without a relight. On course all had a great time, with no difficult areas.
Sunday, looks like a good day, and the grid should be full for the practice day. I will try and do a post and let you know before hand how things went. Remember the SSA website as the place to go and see scores and writeups of the contest.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Region 5N, Perry, SC.

Perry, home of Region 5N, which Rhonda and Al Tyler, with Wes and the Carolina Soaring group have been doing for the last 8 years is gearing up again for a great contest. Check their website for the pilot list, as this is going to be a shoot out for all the classes. Its a full field of 65 +2 = 67.
We have flown the last 2 days, Wednesday and Thursday, and today, needed to get some chores done, and yep, the sky exploded shortly after 1 pm and had the look of west Texas skys. Its been dry and any rain simply just evaporates when it hits the ground.
To ALL that are coming to Perry, SC. remember the local smokey in Wagener with stop and write ya for a very small infraction of the speed limit. I saw one smokey in the local laundry and he had writen up a dryer that was spinning to fast, be careful, ....ya here.
Next few days, some weather is moving thur, but we expect to be flying and getting some practice in for the up coming contest.
Over the next few days I am going to do a photo contest again and the first person to guess what or who, wins a free brewster when I see them.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Best bang for your buck

Well, today we sit in Seminole, as it rains. Tomorrow shows winds, but the changes are happening so fast, we could fly. Today, at the morning pilots meeting, John Seaborn, A8, who sat in the back seat with KS on Thursday, told us about how he has kept notes since 1994 on what to do and not to do.
Back in '94 he wrote down what not to do and that was to try and follow KS out on course. Today, he reported, it is possible to follow KS out on course, as long as your sitting in the back seat of KS's Duo. They won the day.
On another note. The US Team is selling tickets at $25 bucks per ticket for a "Clear Nav". I have seen it, and I will say this is your chance for the best bang your spent dollars will ever bring you. All sales go to the US Team fund and folks, its this simple, with the euro so high, our team needs some extra bucks. Remember, just take one less drive to the drive-thur hamburger place, take a walk instead, and take a chance and get a ticket. The SSA website is selling the tickets.
I do believe what I am seeing here with Chip "CG" and Mark "7K" team flying, is what we have needed along time ago, simply practice. They are posting their scores and you can now see how effective they are with being able to work with each other.
I know, I am banging on this US Team fund, but this year, you get a real chance to win something that will really update your panel and help out the team. Trust me on this, I do think the winning ticket has NOT been bought yet, yep, so get on over to the SSA website and try your luck.
If you win, just let me know you got the idea from this blog, and what I'll do is whenever we meet, sometime, somewhere, I'll get ya a 6 pack of brewsters. Now, thats a bang for your buck, for sure.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Seniors 2008 Seminole Gliderport Florida

Well, today is Saturday, March 8, 2008, and here in Seminole we sit with all gliders in their trailers. Last several days have been rain with thunderstorms and today the winds are out of the west and are over 25 kts. Temperature is dropping as I type this and its getting colder with nite time lows expected into the upper 30's.
Tomorrow morning mandatory pilots meeting is at 9:30 am, but with the clock jumping an hour, thats really 8:30 am and it will be cold tomorrow morning and highs will only be into the 60's. Good news is as the week gets older an improving trend is happening and it will be warming each day.
New ships here, V2cxt's and ASG 29's. Most folks have showed up that have had fairly long drives. If we grid tomorrow, I will try and post some pictures. Last several years we have been luckly with the weather and lets hope it warms faster than the forecast.
Did hear Charlie Spratt is doing well and is still on the list for a transplant. Not much else in the way of rumors as most are staying inside, out of the wind and cold.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Help please/ pledges/sponsers WE HAVE TEN (10) PLEDGES
As many of you know, the World Championships are this Aug. 08 in Germany. I am looking for sponsors which will pledge 1 cent for every mile I fly from Feb. 08 to Jun 08. I will match every 1 cent with 1 cent of my own, for each pledge. My flights will be on the OLC, and that will record the distance flown. Max. mileage flown will be 7500 Statue miles within this time frame.

I have 10 sponsorship/pledge spots available. As an example, if I fly 5000 Sm, your pledge will be for $50.00 and I will match it with $50.00. You may take one or more.

You will then send your pledge to me, Jul 1st, 2008 and I will send a personal check to this party. A plaque also be sent, the cost of which I shall pay for and displayed with your name, showing of your support. The location of where it will be displayed shall be shared at a later date.

I am hoping to make this a surprize, and as many of you know me, it will be done. After your pledge/sponsership, I will disclose to you, in confidence, who it is for. The euro's very high so its a way we can show our support and it does go towards a good purpose. My email is at the top of the page. I will answer all emails sent to me.

I do thank you, I know they will.

Best regards, Tom Kelley # 711 USA.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Who is it??? Winners, contest over.

We have a winner, Ray D. Lovinggood, PE, and he has claimed the prize. The above picture, shows 5U, Sam Glitner, helping with the launch during the R5N soaring contest in Perry, SC. What I am going to do is if anybody can say who it is in any of the shown gliders, they will also get a free brew. Listen you guys and girls, just don't send me the score sheet as someone has, and claimed they were on the list. That won't work..............

Matt, flying PF in the sports class, has some good eyes, if you look under the wing, you will see W3, which is Tim Wells. TO, flown by Richard Mealdy, is the background glider. He has some art deco on his tail. Matt is looking for the grid sheet now, ha, ha, the contest is over now, Matt.
First one to guess who it is, in the glider or standing their, gets a free beer when I see you somewhere. Hint, its Perry, S.C. R5n.
Here's a email link to John down in New Zeland. He's putting together a new magazine...Gliding International. It will be good and as soon as I get his webpage, we will get that here for you.
Early entry closes shortly for "The Seniors", get your stuff in, with the lack of rain, the soaring might be the best we will have ever seen, this spring, around Seminole. Last spring we had some great days, with some guy going over 600 K for a days fun flight and yes, GV, I know it was you and congrats on a flight well done and a new Florida State record. Good job, George.
Tom Knauff does put out an email newsletter. If you don't subscribe, you should, its one of the last free good things that come along.
Also, Paul, at Cumulus Soaring, is putting out a newsletter, its free and Paul does a great job in what he has written so far. He has been looking for help at the convention, I haven't talked with him, as to what he needs, but if you can help out, then let it be done.