nedelja, 27. marec 2011

Quick brief on Combat 13.5 GT

Since I got so many questions from all around the world around new Combat 13.5 GT I tough I should write an article solely about the feelings I got on this new gun.

Now I have like 6 flights on it so my judgement is far from real thing for now. I am still adjusting it with proper weight and sprog adjustments, but I am slowly coming back to a toy that I had last year. All the flights where made in already strong conditions of up to 7 m/s thermals.


Glider is made from a 14 size frame from last year. They changed the sail cut to a 8.5. aspect ratio which makes glider look really interesting.

The last batten tip is adjustable now so you can adjust the whole sail from middle to the end. Sail tension is much bigger as you have smaller path from the leading edge to the end of the wing. This makes the sail stiffer due to the smaller size in this tension.

The upper sail is made from one clean cut of smoky, no stitches just one big piece of smoke which makes the glider look really slick. The lower battens are made different on this Combat as they can be bend in the middle for a better handling.

Difference between new WillsWing T2c and a new Combat 13.5 GT


Taking off:

Having the glider on the shoulders it is very nice balanced. First surprise you get with your first take off. The wing generates lift at a really low speed so you are flying after just a step or two. The stall speed is slower then with other models. This is going to be interesting to see it at work on Cucco.

Flying it:

The biggest question, the handling? I heard that question million times past days :D
When I saw it for the first time in pictures I said: "I just hope it will have at least good handling as 13,7"
I got it...

First I flew with out ballast on it so I was driven around a bit with it. A step on weight scale showed I was good during winter time as my belly went down quite a lot. With the harness I was a bit bellow 88 kg which was too low for the 13.5 square meters. A bit of lead and was strong on 93 kg with all the gear. The glider suddenly felt much better then before. Last year I made a mistake flying on 13,7 with out lead, now I know...

Flying it in thermals is poetry, yet you can feel that extra span when you hit a thermal from a side. When you get inside it is a rocket up. As it has a slower stall speed you can actually fly lot slower with it. I was very surprised to fly so slow with it already on first flights. I flew with Slovenian master Franc who was on a brand new Willswing and we where thermaling together quite the same. It is hard to say about the glide as it was a day that 20 m difference in path made 50 m difference in eight but I was surely flying with him and this was before I lowered the sprogs. Yes, they are still above the DHV measurments.

The glider is however different from my previous one, so I know that some extra hours on it will make me work it it like one.

I won`t be talking too much about the CG sistem as I have not figure it out enough. Sure is nice to get back in the thermal and have a relaxed circles and sure it is nice on glides when you pull in and have a reasonable bar pressure for the glide.

Bar pressure?
I can say you can feel it is more nervous in pitch, then 13,7 was, but lets not forget, the 13,7 was a glider made to fly with out the tail, this one is not. Still you fell very confident when you hit the turbulence as you can feel the tail at work all the time.


Remember the school gliders? Well, this one is easier...
Due to it slow stall speed you come to the push point with such a slow speed that you actually step down from the sky. The tail makes a glider very forgivable, when you push too late it does not jump on the nose so you can catch it with a short run. If you are too early, the glider will not pull up and go down on the tail but will float down more horizontal. I guess it is the tail that is doing this, I felt this one 13,7 and am felling now as well. The flare moment is big enough to catch it, with this glider you make the flare really slow, opening the glider to the very end and just step down.

Overall judgement:

I am sure that Bassano will show us a good picture about the glider. I feel confident with its handling and am feeling very safe on it in the air. Can`t wait to cross this white line in the goal field :)

ponedeljek, 14. marec 2011

World championship 2011 Monte Cucco LIVE with Nokia

I am very pleased to announce that I got a green light from Nokia for making my blog more updated then ever.

My idea was to actually erase the problem with catching WiFi connections in Umbria to actually post some news from the World championship 2011. Nokia gave me the tool to make it. Nokia N8 became my companion since Florida and #N8Producers trip. Slowly I am learning all the possibilities I get with it and there is much to be learned :)

So with this phone I have video cam, a photo camera and a connection to the worldwide web where my blog is siting as well :) The only missing link was a credit to actually have them published in real time from anywhere where phone signal gets. They gave me a hand to help me with that.

So guess what, here you will be able to see the task board shortly after the briefing.(I have to listen too) :) Pictures from the goal field in the real time, videos and so on. The possibilities are endless.

Off the topic

I am preparing a short article about the new Aeros Combat 13.5 GT coming soon. Keep in touch :)

Last Thursday we also had a price giving for sport achievements in my home town Tolmin. I was quite surprised to get this beauty in my hands :)

sreda, 02. marec 2011

Weightless clumsiness

Time is running fast, running really fast here. Since Thursday, everyday we where upon something, Saturday was the top cherry the Zero G flight, then Universal studios, then Space center Kennedy, yesterday alligators. This morning I am finally able to get some words together about it, yet the zero g stays a puzzle that will I will be solving in next days. Was just so great.

Project N8 Producers gathered people from all around the world and it was nice to see how good group came here. We all had great time together also on the "unofficial" evenings where we spend some great moments together.
So, the Zero gravity flight. We went to the airstrip where the Zero G plane was waiting for us. Before that we had a safety briefing just like we do at hang gliding comps just that here weather was not a part of it :) They explained us a bit about behavior in the weightlessness as usually people start to swim when it happens :) Not nice to kick someone in the air like this :)
The parabola was made of +2G that then transformed first one to Mars gravity (2/3G) then to 2 parabolas with Lunar (1/3G) and then finally to a zero one.
They did that so we could adjust us to the felling of weightlessness. The party could begin :)

The actual feeling is somehow hard to explain. Like being under water with out resistance. Every movement you do causes you to move for infinity until you don`t stop yourself punching to the other side of the plane or to someone else. Feet down coming, feet down coming was the signal that told us to get in to position where we will get back on the floor so you better be with your legs down when this happened and maybe not up on the roof as you had 2 m to get down :)

Chaos a nice chaos with group of people floating around. After five parabolas, first stomachs started to feel bad so they where escorted to the back of the plane, yet, they did not solve the problem also there as they experienced all other parabolas by being seated to the plane seats.

I have to admit, after the 15th the last parabola I was white in my face as well, I think another one would make me use the bag that they gave us for the emergency :) Nena was on the other hand felling ok, she even took the snacks that they gave to us just after the last parabola.

After experience like that you, ask yourself how it looks like to be in space. If you would ask me that right after the Zero G I guess I would throw up :) But, this was a controlled fall that ended up by taking the +2G again and then again to zero G, maybe this is bigger problem then just floating around in space. Susan Kilrain, the astronaut from one space shuttle mission said that the hardest thing in zero G is to be relaxed, funny, we al think that being weightless means enjoying it and being relaxed with it on the other hand you are actually all the time trying to get in to the proper position. She said, you really miss to sit down :)
They need somehow three days to adjust to this felling.

That is a short version of the feelings that I was able to put together in my head. I had some footage of the Zero G flight that I was able to put together really fast in Pinnacle that I just don`t like anymore as I am spoiled by the Premiere. Enjoy the ride :)