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My first thermaling XC this year

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Hi all

On the 2nd of march i took off from a friends farm in pulbrough at around 1.30 just to go for a quick fly around. I headed of north in to what looked like a nice patch of developing CU'S. after about 10-15 mins of motoring i was under one of the big flat bottomed cu's "NOTHING NOTHING AT ALL" Not a blip so i thought sod it an i flew south to head for the downs. I was hanging around to wait for my mate to take of as he was having engine trouble. As i got near to the downs over west chiltington common at around 1400ft i hit a 5-6 up on the vario :D woo hoo i trimmed back the trimmers and started to core this good Strong lift. This took me up to around 3000ft . I looked east to Devils dyke and thought naaa i will never make with with the amount of fuel i was carrying "5 ltrs" I flew on more to the east still with the motor off.

My next target was ashinton about 6km away from my hook up in strong lift. I thought i might just make it if i have another small patch of lift on the way. I took every little bit i could find but I must have been flying past every good patch of lift out there. I was going to be short and now down to about 1000ft i had no option but to switch the motor back on and sod's law two mins later another cracking thermal this time only ave 4 up so off with the motor pull back the trimmers and start to core again. I notice my mate back over Chiltington common in good lift and going up like a rocket. What do i do now???? do i wait for him or do i push on to the shoreham gap " I can see the dyke and i know i can make it now !!!" OK i thought i will give him 5 mins and see what he does if he follows i will wait for him if not i will push on... Still going up and now almost at 3500ft and max allowed in this air space i pushed east again towards the dyke keeping an eye out for him.

Looking forward to Brighton i notice a fire "the smoke was coming from the south" MMMMMmmmm sea breeze??? convergence there has to be some somewhere as i took of with the wind from the north/NE but i could see no line of cloud just Cu's. OK 5mins up he wasn't following so i headed of towards Stenning.

Again nothing not a blip now down to 1000ft again motor back on. I stayed north of stenning to keep well away from shoreham ATC and keeping high as the river Adur was in flood "i didn't want and engine fail over that". As i pass all the floods i start to idle and loose some height as my hands were getting a little cold and i knew i could make it to the dyke on just a glide. WELL ALMOST.

This time not alot of lift but ALOT of sink untill i get near this big brown field and BANG my wing surges forward. As i was on slow trim i had to dampen this or i was going to be in sh1t!!! I turn and now i was going up fast i have never heard my vario make so much noise i was a constant pitch not the normal bleep bleep. Engine off i look down 8.....9up ave My ave is set over 15seconds.... I was soon at 4000ft so i push on to the dyke. I was having so much fun i had totaly forgot about my fuel! I must be low. I made my mind to get to the Dyke as i knew that Micheal Carnet has a field he use's at the back of the Dyke.

WHOOO HOOO I MADE IT :D now time to get the mirror out and check fuel 3LTRS???? no way so i check again this time 2TLRS mmmm ok CALL IT 2.5 :D i now i can make it back on 2.5 easy.

I do my lap of honour around the pub at the Dyke and head for home... I start my way back and just a few km's NW of the Dkye and now with motor on and trimmers fully out i hit the mother of all turbulence my wind was everywhere. I had to stop myself from grabbing the brakes. I said to myself "no this is a Reflex wing" not my old PG wing relax.

I think i was now in some form of convergence but it was rough 6+ up to 6- in a split second i was not having fun at all.. i carried on nw and it slowly got better ave a smooth 2 up on full trim and half throttle. I am going to make it home easy!!! I could now see loads of fires and the smoke was southerly over the downs and north eastly a mile or so north of the downs.

It was plain sailing for about 30mins untill i ran out of lift it was getting late and most of the cu's were now failing and the convergence had gone. i check my fuel again and "sh1t! 1ltr NO WAY!!! this was going to be tight as i was about 30 mins away. ok trim back to neutral and take it easy. If i make it cool if not i am close enough to walk or ring my mate to come and pick me up.

20 mins in i can now see the landind field "i might just make it" i had slowly climbed to 2500ft and had trimmed right back

I am going to make it!!! i am going to make it!!!! But still waiting for the motor to cut out any second. i start my approach to the LZ and a perfect two step landing.

I cant believe i had made it all that way on 5LTS This V3 motor is awsome!!!! I unclip and pull my wing in and take off the motor i sit it on the ground to see how close i was to running out and i can't believe it i had 2ltrs left.... I had flown for 2h 20m flown to brighton and back on 2.5--3.0LTRS

I cant wait to get back out there and have another cracking flight like this again soon!!!!!

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Wow Morgy, what a flight!

That sounds really cool. Me I still haven't dared to switch off the motor yet and only managed to hit one thermal accidentally but it was fun. Free Height Yeaaah!

Sorry for the thick question but what motor is the V3? Engine and Frame combination??

More power to your elbow mate!


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Its not the size of it its what you do with it.... Said the man with the small prop!!! :lol:

I free fly with my fusion as well so i am i the middle of the wieght range so i am not the fastest man out there but it that means i have good econ.

you need to get out there and switch of that motor an core some thermals free lift is always good as long as your not in a hurry to get somewhere..

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Hi Rob

I did think of you when i was coring into a craking thermal near the dyke. It reminded me of that flight out of guildford we had when i got that big tuck!!! :shock::coptor:

I have some great flights planned you just got to get your arse down here dude. I now have a great place to fly out of.

Give me a ring when your free to fly and we can sort something out!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...


Great write up.

Certainly agree about the economy of the Fusion 26.

Ben Clewes and I flew from Barry's to the dyke and back on Tuesday.

I did it on 5.5L on the way out into wind (flight time 1.50mins) and 3L on the way home. (PAP Ros 125)

There was some good lift on the way out too though :wink:



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