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1st Flight Since Fly-In

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Well after two weeks of crap weather, no transport, the usual.. I managed to get myself in the air even if it was for only 10minutes..


It was average wind when I took off but once I got to about 500ft the wind became quite dangerous so I turned around and headed back to land.

I landed in the field next to where I took off which was planned however about 10ft off the ground the wind shifted 90 degrees so it pulled me over to the left and I hit the ground with a bit of a bump :) got a bruise on my shin but nothing to go crying about.

No Major damage to the engine, prop, wing etc just a crack in the frame, so it has been handed over to an engineering friend of mine who is gonna cut and sleeve the frame at the lower end to strengthen it a little more.. but it was was on those moments when you see the wind sock shift at the last minute and then you see the wind pulling the wing over and you just think .... OH CRAP! got a bruise on my shin but nothing to cry about ill be up again as soon as the frame is repaired

but when I was up there I turned towards Torbay seafront and all I can say is WOW, and I need a gopro :)

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Good to hear you're OK and the experience has cost you relatively little.

Before flying, it's worth making a fairly in-depth study of the local conditions. It takes a few minutes and can make the difference between a pleasant flight and a terrifying experience.

The conditions you describe above ground may well be the result of local thermal activity. If the sun is beating down hot on the ground, expect thermals and a bumpy ride. On summer days, this can be any time between 10am and 8pm (approx.).

Sudden changes of wind direction near the ground can be the result of thermal activity or rotor.

Where heated air is rising, it draws in air from all directions towards the rising column. The column may move around quite quickly, as patches of warmer or cooler air are drawn in, or the thermal is affected by rotor.

Rotor may extend downwind of trees, hedges and other obstructions for up to 5 times the height of the obstruction.

I was flying in similar conditions a couple of weeks ago. I made a couple of low passes under power before deciding where I would land. This allowed me to watch the windsock, surrounding plants, other pilots wings on the ground and anything else which might help me judge the conditions right where I intended to land. If it doesn't look good, I'll pick another spot.

It's better to land well in the wrong field than land badly in the one where you parked your car.

Happy flying.

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thanks for the info.. I was in the field for a good 40mins before the wind died down to acceptable levels then waited another 15 to see if any change etc, also checking online..

Once I get the frame back i'll be looking at getting up pretty soon but I think ill look at an early morning or evening flight as the wind is definitely calmer especially down here :)

hopefully ill have a go-pro by then ;)

Cant Wait

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Sounds like you did well not to do too much damage given the circumstances.

The photo you posted shows some big powerful clouds, so definitely lots of very active air there, giving large gusts and sudden changes of wind direction. Fun conditions to fly in, but far more challenging than smooth calm conditions.

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