There was no PFA in 2020, so it was great to meet up with many fellow members of the club after two years. It was a real bonus, too, that the weather was perfect - not too hot because of some hazy cloud cover and calm. The wind drift, such as it was, measured 3 mph, except when there were thermals. These you caught at your peril and inevitably your model would inevitably end up in the large trees to the west. Which I did (or rather my Draken and Red Arrows Hawk did). Fortunately there were colleagues with long poles!
Two obvious lesson of the day were (a) sensible, or logical, trimming of small jet planes is really only possible in calm conditions and (b) Old Warden is a much more turbulent flying field than Peterborough Ferry Meadows.
I did indeed arrive with untrimmed models (some not having been taken out of their boxes fore some years) so it was a real joy to be able to 're-trim' the Red Arrows Hawk, Draken and, best of all, the X-13 Vertijet. This latter had never before achieved a 'full flight' so its cruise around the field at 20-30 feet altitude was a real joy.
In all I flew six 'Jetex-type' models and (after some failures (it is a well attested phenomenon that models do loose their trim during storage!) I achieved good flights with all of them:
Above: I had really tried hard with this BAE Hawk model to make it as well as I could. On previous attempts to trim it out at Old Warden it was always upset by turbulence and dived into the ground. Reluctantly, I concluded it was 'A Waster of Rapiers'
At PFA, once I had corrected a slight turn and bent the thrust tab to give more 'down thrust' it flew spectacularly well. True, it landed high in a tree (we could just reach it with a 27 metre pole), but we got it back.
Daniel joined us in the afternoon and also made many good flights, some of which were caught on video which I hope to share in due course.
The point about the need for calm conditions was underlined when Daniel brought out his Veron Fouga Cyclone:
This lovely model was (you will remember) made during 'lockdown) and we had no luck at all trying to trim it at Old Warden. Here at Ferry Meadows, in a flat calm, it first exhibited an extended glide into the ground with a Rapier L-1. This suggested a Rapier L-1 LT would be the perfect match. And so it was: after correcting a left turn, Daniel was rewarded for all his hard work with a lovely low level cruise around the field, seemingly for ages.
The most 'fun flight' of the day was given by Rob Smith's Focke-Wulf Triebflugel:
This was powered by no less than three L-1 motors. These needed careful ignition to get going at the same time!
The rotor did spin, it did rise up, and then attacked the kind person who had lit all the motors (yours truly!). More development need, I think!
Many thanks, Daniel. Your video shows what spectacular flights can be achieved with the new TSP motors. These seem to accelerate the models to a higher speed than the old Rapiers (? ). They also burn for longer. We're gonna need a bigger field!
Below are some 'stills' extracted from the videos:
Above: Daniel launches MiG 15 for a great flight.
Above: Daniel goes off in search of MiG 15 after said great flight!
Above: it was great to see this iconic Veron model flying properly. Well done Daniel! It does show that we still need an 'L-2 LT for these sorts of model (Piotr take note!).
Above: Daniel launches Me 163. A tricky beast, this, which obviously prefers to take off on its own!
Above: the Me 163 at rotation. Daniel in hot pursuit!
Great models all round guys!
The video brought them to life. All of them impressed me - even the fouga tumble which had me cringing when the wing went.
The Komet take off had me laughing. how cool was that?!
That Hawk just went up and away! It looked great.
Loved it all, thanks for sharing.
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