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norman
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Is the weather information suitable in this section?  

10 members have voted

  1. 1. Is the weather information suitable in this section?

    • Yes
      9
    • Yes but difficult to interpret.
      1


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Standby folks, this sub area of the forum is specifically for the presentation of current and forecast weather.

Norman & Dan the Man and Francis with Paul our 'Weather Wizard' will be placing the 'good stuff' here for your interest and planning purposes.

The format of weather presentation here will change as we look for the ideal method of delivering it to our community. Please bear with us until we find the right combinations and feel free to comment/request or even rant on the general forum.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Guys & girls, there is a lot of information on the met section, perhaps too much for the novice pilot so we thought it would be worth putting up a brief introduction to obtain the basic forecast for yourself to see when the next flying window is. While I realise that there are many many sites to check, I prefer to use just two sites that use easy to read graphics using the KISS theory and the fact that a picture speaks a thousand words.

www2.wetter3.de/ is my primary site, I look for weather fronts and wind speed, since fronts are the principal cause of significant weather and are to be avoided, and windspeed dictates if it's within our safe limits to fly. This site is better than the met office site as you get an extra couple of days forecast.

Click on the down arrow under Bodenanalyse, this steps through the next 5 days and you can watch the fronts moving and see where and when the high pressure will creep in. This is very useful to know as you can plan when/if a front will pass over which is often not obvious on one chart alone.

weather1.jpg

Here you see Wednesdays forecast at midnight, a lovely big lump of high pressure covering the UK, the lack of isobars (lines) shows low winds, high winds would be indicated by the isobars being close together for example at the top of the map. Also the lack of fronts crossing the UK means no significant changes in the weather (usually rain and temperature changes). The next map at 12:00 is virtually the same (not shown here as it just clutters up this section) so we can deduct there will be little change during the course of the day. By stepping through the 5 day forcast you should be able to tell which days are looking flyable and how long the window willl last, and this day looks peachy.

weather2.jpg

Next I like to confirm the weather in the location I want to fly, I know the met office has spot wind charts however I swear by www.metcheck.com/ which translates the surface wind into a very easy to read format. Simply enter your location in the box and step through the days of the week.

weather4.jpg

To confirm what we thought about Wednesdays weather, Metcheck shows the following detailed information throughout the course of the day including cloud cover, windspeed & direction.

weather3.jpg

Metcheck does have an aviation forecast but I find the basic one does the job. I play with these sites a lot, and while there are more sites to look at, these two simplify the forecast so I'd advise you to look at them as often as possible, clicking through the days ahead and see how accurate they are. The weather is like an episode of Eastenders, you can pause one frame to see who's in it, but you really need to watch the episode to see what they are doing.

Remember a forecast is a predicted event, but it has variables, however as the event draws closer the variables reduce and the forecast becomes more certain until the event actually happens, so don't rely on what it says will happen in 5 days, check it each day.

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Dan how close to the predicted wind speed do you find metchack? on the IoW I find I have to add 7mph. Yet their aviation forecast is usually much closer to the actual wind speed.

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When we are on the ridgeway it's best to add about 3-4mph due to venturi, elsewhere flat it's about spot on. Looking at say Wednesdays/Thursdays aviation and basic forecast there is only the occasional 1mph difference between the two for Swindon.

A quick check on http://www.xcweather.co.uk is a great way for a spot check on actual measured windspeeds, I'm looking at it now and I can see actual measurements of 7mph at Lyneham and Metcheck says 4mph at 6pm so it would be worth checking later.

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