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First zero wind take off!


Fly_mow
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Thought I would seize the calm eve and go for a fly.

Set up as normal at edge of the field where I launched in 2 or 3 mph wind 2 weeks ago. All set up. Ran forward, wing came up nicely, full throttle, legs going flat out, plenty of break, but absolutely sweet F A by the time I reached the far side of the field.

Safe to say I underestimated how important that slight breeze is for launching. 3 attempts and I called it a day.

Has any one got any handy tips for launching in nil wind other than run faster fatty!!!

Ps I'm 85kg on a revo2 23 and a pap Ross with 6L of motion potion. I know I'm slightly heavy on the wing but with a slight breeze I launch fine.

Thanks peeps.

Stu

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This brings an idea back to the surface.....

Nil wind indoor launch practice... :-)

The main reason before for not happening was the lack of an indoor venue large enough.... ( I think I now have a place! )

Give me a couple of days and I will call them, if no response here, ping it back to the top for me please :-)

SW :D

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In zero wind you could try putting the trims all the way in for take off- just keep a little more pressure on the back of the 'A's to get the wing up... it may take a little longer for the wing to come fully up overhead, but you won't have to run as fast when it does come up.

Pick the biggest field you can get.... and now matter how much it seems like zero, there will always be a bit of movement... make sure you are alligned into it.... May not help you much, but don't work against it.. Thermal finders are ideal for this on calm days.... or you can't beat a bit of cigarette smoke! (but don't inhale :lol: )

GD

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All good points. I was on neutral trim as i noticed the wing was a lot harder to ground handle with trimmers right in. Kinda decided neutral was a good place to launch on because of this, but totally agree with what ya said. Will def try that next time. And I had a wind sock and done the old "through he grass in the air" trick but nothing at all, maybe a better result with smoke. Another thing I will have to try.

But on the plus side I got a nice bit of exercise this evening!! :oops:

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Yeah- neutral trims would make a big difference.... that's why you were running so far- you just couldn't get teh wing to flying speed.

Try your normal take off position next time, if that dosen't work then put them fully in. Just keep moving forward and pushing on the 'a's and it should come up overhead.

'Grass in the air' wont be influenced too much by low winds, but it can make a difference to you if teh wind is behind you.... Check the old smoke trick next time- good luck!

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Hey Stu

Your set up is almost the same as mine. I'm 85kg PA125 Pap (about the same power as Ros 125) and i'm on a Revo2, only difference is im on a 26.

More than half of my launches are virtually nil wind, although as Gordon quite rightly says, it's extremely rare to have absolutely nil wind. And I also launch on neutral trims.

In my experience, finding the direction of that that tiny bit of air movement makes all the difference. Also, rapid, full commitment to launch in these conditions is essential.

Therefore spend that extra bit longer making sure you are confident your wing will pop up straight over head. It's the reason I launch on neutral. I like the solid feel of the wing coming overhead quickly. As I never look up, it helps me to feel confident about a fast commitment.

For me, an important wing lay out factor is to make sure you have a real horseshoe set up to ensure your centre A's get the tension.

Having said all that, I know how much effort I occasionally have to put in on my 26 in nil wind, so it stands to reason that on a 23 it's only going to be harder.

I know it's a cliche, but it gets easier with repetition :)

Dan

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Hey Stu,

It might not be the exact moment for you to learn this (maybe too early, just build confidence first), but if your cage is strong enough do know that short takeoffs in nil wind are possible using the powered takeoff technique and its variations:

1) Takeoff as normal, but as your wing starts to climb apply power early to help wing climbing and your running.

2) Takeoff as normal, but you lean a bit forward and blow a lot of air at max power right above the wing, then release power and inflate the wing straight away. The moved air above the wing will help put it quickly up over your head.

3) My favourite: takeoff as normal, you make sure to position yourself so that the lines are not slack. Apply full power slightly bending forward as per 2). Now the tricky part: think of yourself like a bike that is fully powered at start but held in place by the front brakes (your legs). Hence what you will do is: full power (or so, depends on your thrust), holding with legs, "release" the legs and start to walk and release power at the same time, you will be pushed to a good start by the inertia of the motor, wing will also climb up easily due to moved air, and apply power again as you start switching from initial few steps walk to full run.

Timing is key here, you have to learn to re-apply power at the right time, if you apply too late you will loose the initial benefit, too early and the wing might not climb up fast and neat as it will meet the flux of air from the paramotor.

Starting with lines not slack is important too as there will be less chance that the wing will climb uneven.

The last two techniques are actually good even if you have a light cage with which powered takeoffs are normally not recommended (i.e. miniplane). The reason is you release power when the wing is climbing up which is the moment when the cage could be bent due to excessive lines' tension.

Hope it helps.

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Hi, I've been learning a powered take off technique over the last year. I taught it to my mate Simon who you can see using it in this video.

[youtubevideo]

[/youtubevideo]

I create an airflow over the wing for 15 seconds which sucks more air around and over the wing, you have to do it right over the middle. Then I come off the power and step forward. The airflow helps the wing up much quicker than in a normal launch, then you run with full power.

If you don't put the air flow over the middle, the wind will not come up straight. In the video you can hear me grumbling because Simon left a few seconds gap between coming off the power and stepping forwards. Still worked though.

Best of luck.

Stu

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Like the sound and look of the power take off. Wind is looking exactly the same at present so might get another chance to practice later.

If not I hope for a slight breeze so I can defiantly get my rear end off the deck.

To the other extreme I have been VERY selective of when I fly

and have only flown in wind below about 4 miles an hour. In your opinion what is the max wind speed I should be attempting with 5 seccessful flights under my belt?

Thanks peeps.

Stu

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Like the sound and look of the power take off. Wind is looking exactly the same at present so might get another chance to practice later.

If not I hope for a slight breeze so I can defiantly get my rear end off the deck.

To the other extreme I have been VERY selective of when I fly

and have only flown in wind below about 4 miles an hour. In your opinion what is the max wind speed I should be attempting with 5 seccessful flights under my belt?

Thanks peeps.

Stu

Stu, its not so much the wind strength but the variation and direction you need to look at, for instance a wind of 5 mph with gusts to 7 mph in the fairly constant direction will be much easier to take off in than a wind of 7 mph with gusts to 12 mph, Higher wind speed does not always stop us from flying.

last night at canewdon we had 8 mph with gusts to around 10 mph, wich was not too bad, you just had to time your launch.

mind you it did switch 360 degrees by the time we had set up, we all had to turn our wings around.

proberly the worst wind I took off in was 8 mph gusting to 17 mph, made for a tricky landing too :shock:

if I were you at your stage of flying I would proberly steer clear of any wind speed showing gusting to double figures.

also with higher wind speeds you need to take into account the terrain around your launch site, rotor from trees etc will have more effect the higher the wind speed.

even a windspeed of around 5mph have have an effect from something like a small rise in the terrain if you are low down.

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Hi, I've been learning a powered take off technique over the last year. I taught it to my mate Simon who you can see using it in this video.

I create an airflow over the wing for 15 seconds which sucks more air around and over the wing, you have to do it right over the middle. Then I come off the power and step forward. The airflow helps the wing up much quicker than in a normal launch, then you run with full power.

If you don't put the air flow over the middle, the wind will not come up straight. In the video you can hear me grumbling because Simon left a few seconds gap between coming off the power and stepping forwards. Still worked though.

Best of luck.

Stu

Yes that meant to be what I was referring at as technique n. 2, but ended up being more tech. n. 1, i.e. a normal powered launch. He indeed waited a bit too long before stepping forward for the wing to be helped in lifting.

Here is a better example of the technique with detailed explanation:

[vimeo]

[/vimeo]
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  • 5 years later...
On ‎03‎/‎09‎/‎2012 at 21:21, gordon_dunn said:

In zero wind you could try putting the trims all the way in for take off- just keep a little more pressure on the back of the 'A's to get the wing up... it may take a little longer for the wing to come fully up overhead, but you won't have to run as fast when it does come up.

Pick the biggest field you can get.... and now matter how much it seems like zero, there will always be a bit of movement... make sure you are alligned into it.... May not help you much, but don't work against it.. Thermal finders are ideal for this on calm days.... or you can't beat a bit of cigarette smoke! (but don't inhale :lol: )

GD

i agree but its hard to see the smoke from a fag hanging out your gob lol

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