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#406412
Hi All;

Take a look at this.



We keep flying all winter here. We almost missed flying in January 2019, but the last day of the month had acceptable conditions, so we dropped everything and went flying. Some of our guys have a fairly flexible work situation. I keep my winches and my personal flying equipment ready to go at a moment's notice. Sometimes we decide to fly with only a couple hours lead time. The weather around here is so changeable that we have to operate this way.

During this flight, the visibility was MUCH better than is shown in the video, especially during the tow-up to the south. You can see the fuzzy image of the sun through the relatively thin upper cloud layer during the tow. This was no doubt messing with the contrast and brightness of the background images and the overall tone of the video early on.

And yes, I know I miss spelled "climbing" (climbling) in the video.

Doug








#406470
Pilot restraint system?
Downtube pads?
Why add all that extra drag?
Oh, prolly things like safety, comfort, risk -reward balance. Very little drag. :thumbsup:

8)
Last edited by blindrodie on Mon Feb 11, 2019 11:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
#406503
To be sure Chris it is a really nice way to get up. We've been doing it for at least 30 years in the midwest with at least two pilots building rigs for pilots around here.

I think the most "famous" rigs are the ATOL (Air Time Over Lubbock) systems that combined simplicity and inexpensive parts with a sweet tower that helped direct and control the line feed, as well as a worm geared rewind that kept the towline wrapped smoothly on the spools. Many were placed on the front bumper of smaller trucks so that there was room for the wing in the small bed. I know of a custom setup that's just rotting away on an El Cameno (along with a Millennium) in Excelsior Springs MO.

Now we see pilots like Wonderboy using a custom rig set up with out riggers to get the blade wings up safely and successfully.

I will say that there are inherent dangers in every system and PL has its own, you can bet. But applying good safety measures (which have been recently updated by the USHPA) and a healthy risk reward attitude makes PL one of the least expensive and safe means for getting aloft without a mountain or Tug.

Good luck in your effort to try this fun and exciting way to get airtime above your local "Lubbock"!

8)
#406519
Hi Roadrunner71;

blindrodie wrote:

"I will say that there are inherent dangers in every system and PL has its own, you can bet. But applying good safety measures (which have been recently updated by the USHPA) and a healthy risk reward attitude makes PL one of the least expensive and safe means for getting aloft without a mountain or Tug."

These things that blindrodie says are right on the money.

Additionally, I have the following to say:

It would not be wise for an otherwise experienced HG pilot to assume that he could do it without proper training. It can be VERY intimidating to a PL newby and result in sensory overload. But for an experienced PL pilot, it can be super exhilarating. I didn't say "What a rush this is" in the video for nothing! It is absolutely unforgiving of sloppy or ineffective weight shift practices (cross-controlling, sloppy pitch/speed control, legs flopping around, etc.). The tow line tension added to your hang-in weight makes the glider very touchy and prone to yaw-roll PIO (somewhat disconcerting). Some days, like in the video, are super easy; the glider just flies itself. Other days, such as in mid-afternoon summer thermals, it can be a bucking bronco; wanting to go everywhere else but straight! Also, a well-trained tow operator is a must. The tow protocol that the tow operator implements is very important. Different conditions require different protocols. I trust very few people to tow me! These things are only SOME of the factors that need to be considered and mastered for PL.

When people ask me if it is easier/harder or safer/more dangrous than other forms of launching (such as ST, AT), I say to them that I think it is so different in ways, but at the same time does have similarities, that a direct comparison maybe is not valid. You just have to learn the specifics of PL from experienced and safe people. Again, see what blindrodie said.

Fly safe,

Doug
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