Thursday, June 30, 2011

VTPR "Made in America"

VTPR stands for "Voltige très près du relief", and is a flying style that has been created in France a long time ago, more specifically in Britanny. It consists of flying aerobatics very
close to the ground, without any inertia and with extreme agility.
Airframes have been especially developped for this purpose. The main characteristics are very light wings, usually only ailerons and no flap (to save weigth).

Few years ago, several american pilots got interrest in this new approach of aerobatics, and introduced it in California, trying to design new sailplanes, like "Le Fish", freely inspired by the EPP Minitoons. Steve Lange is one of them and a very active actor on the VTPR scene. Steve is running the website http://www.slopeaerobatics.com/ where you will find lots of information, videos, links, etc ...

More recently, his friend, Swiss Peter, worked on extralight EPP airframes. After making an ultralight Spindrift and Le Fish, He managed to build a 2.1m big Fish only at 635 g which is incredibly light !

Here are 2 videos from Steve (aka Surfimp):









For information, a VTPR meeting is organised the 9th of July at Temple Hill (South-California).

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Video: A nice afternoon flying in the French Alps

This was 2 weeks ago. I posted already the photos. Here is a video from the same afternoon.



MKS DS 6125-E

I received the brand new MKS servos, called DS6125-E. This servos is a improved version of the DS95. It has the same servo case, in aluminium, and therefore the same dimensions.



The electronics and gear train is different to give a better torque and improved speed.Also the dead band is better. The servo dead band is measured in microseconds, and is an indicator of the "electrical slop" of the servo's electronics. To simplify, it measures the resolution of the servo.

The DS6125-E and the DS 6125-H together
This means for us a more precise servos, which is always a good thing. I installed in my Vampire F3F 2 x DS95, and flew it during the beginning of the season. My feedbacks are excellent. The servos is so fast and precise that it follows the radio stick oscillation.

See my posts and video here.

http://planet-soaring.blogspot.com/2011/02/mks-ds95-servos-arrived.html

and here

http://planet-soaring.blogspot.com/2011/02/vampire-assembly-started.html

What I also like in the DS95, so the new DS6125-E servos is their dimensions. F3X sailplane fuselage are usually very thin, making the radio installation sometimes tricky. Using these servos made me to save place on the servo tray and have more space for the receiver and the batterie. I appreciated it on the Vampire for example.


Below is the comparison table between the DS95 and the DS6125-E

Video: Hanstholm F3F Eurotour

Lukas Gaubatz released this nice video about this contest in Denmark that was unfortunately cancelled because of the lack of wind.



Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Video: VTPR session by Erwan Laurans

This is the latest video I did, last week-end: Erwan Laurans flying his Sonic at the Banne d'Ordanche (Auvergne) while waiting for the wind during a F3F competition.
His Sonic is 1.9 kg only. This is the typical VTPR sailplane.



Monday, June 27, 2011

Video: Dynamic Soaring explained !

This video from Oyazi (Japan) shows how to recreates at home the principle of the dynamic soaring. You have all the ingredients:

A slope with a sharp edge and a back side, the wind, and a glider doing circles backside. This is just excellent !



T12FG/FX30 firmware 3.0

I just found that there is a new firmware on the T12FG/FX30 with a new feature for glider: This is the Acceleration setting can be performed at elevator, ELE to CAMBER and AILERON to RUDDER.
  • This setting is divided into elevator setting, elevator to camber setting, and aileron to rudder setting. The setting method is the same.
  • Function ON/OFF switch setting is performed for AILERON to RUDDER setting only.
  • Elevator to camber setting sets the acceleration function for ELE to CAMBER mixing. Setting is not performed when ELE to CAMBER mixing is INH.
  • AILERON to RUDDER setting is acceleration function setting for aileron to rudder mixing. It is not performed when AILERON to RUDDER mixing is INH.
  • The acceleration function can be set for both the UP side and DOWN side.

Banne d'Ordanche F3F

I spent my week-end in Auvergne (center of France), near La Bourboule, in a mythic place were the french gliding aviation was born. We were supposed to have a F3F competition, part of the french league. On saturday, the wind was north-east, with unfortunately no slope facind this direction. As the wind shift a little bit to east, we tried a new slope just under the summit of la Banne d'Ordanche. But the wind did'nt stay in the right direction and returned to the north-east so we had to cancelled the round. At least we have validated this new slope for F3F. If the wind it east to south-east, this slope is perfect for F3F.

On sunday, we waited all day long under a strong sun and warm temperatures. around 3 O'clock the organiser decided to end the competition.

Despite the competition didn't happen, we had a great time all together, on the slope with free fligths in the evening with a very friendly dinner, then table tennins competition.

At least, we had plenty of time to do nice photos. Here is my selection.





Here are the pictures done by Nicolas Fischer



Friday, June 24, 2011

Jeti box Profi and DC16 transmitter delayed

I just received the information from Jeti that the profi box, initially annouced for may will be finally available in july.


The DC16 transmitter, on its side is pushed back to october instead of july.


According to Jeti, the problem is due to delays in the supply of some new parts of both equipment.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Nano DLG

Rick Ruijsink visited us during the F3F french championship, and went with a very nice microscopic DLG freely inspired by the Nano from PCM (http://www.pcm.at/Nano/index.html).

50cm wingspan and 40 gramms are the main characteristics. The wing are made from balsa, like the tail and the fin. The boom is a carbon tube.

It flies very well, but the downside is that you cannot fly too far from you :) !

Here are some pictures about it:



Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Noisyskies Video: Mâcon 2011

A new superbe video from the Noisyskies team about Mâcon, a big slope soaring meeting in the heart of a wine-producing region in France, the Bourgogne.



Monday, June 20, 2011

JR XG8 user manual

Before any radio transmitter purchase, it is always interesting to have look to the user manual as it gives you a good feeling about the capabilities of the transmitter. Since the XG8 from JR, which is a clear signal of the divorce with Graupner, but also Spektrum, I was looking for the user manual, by curiosity. In the past JR transmitter were not "glider oriented" compared to the MX22, or graupner equivalent.



It seems that the XG8 is better and propose out of the box the necessary features we need.
I let you have a look to the user manual (in English) and make your opinion.

Flying session at Corps

After a rainy saturday, Sunday was very promising so I decided at the last minute to drive to Corps and enjoy the very nice weather and wind.





I tried some DS with the D60, but the wind was a bit to low to be interresting. The Vampire flew well with 300g of ballast. I have some video sequences to edit in the comings days.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Some photos of a Viking 2

This one belong to Thibaud Ringenbach. I had the chance to pilot his Viking 2 but conditions were too low to tell any conclusion. According to Thibaud, the plane is easier than the freestyler 3 in strong conditions with crosswind. We will follow this plane during the next competitions.



Video: French F3F Championship

Here is a short video from the video sequences I shooted during the champiomship:



Friday, June 17, 2011

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Planet-Soaring available on Mobile Phone !

Thanks to a new feature of blogspot, Planet-Soaring is now able to detect what device is accessing the content, and switch to the mobile version for faster download and reading:

Sanyo to expand Eneloop battery offerings

After releaseing the Eneloop XX, Sanyo is expanding again his eneloop offering with 2 new batteries: the Eneloop PLUS and the Eneloop PRO.
  • The eneloop PLUS comes with a resistor that prevents the batts from reaching skin-scorching heat levels in kids' toys
  • The Eneloop PRO promises 25% juice for power draining application which can be very interresting for us (i.e. full house F3X plane)
These new batteries will be commercialized in Japan, from the 21th of July (PRO) and the 1st of December (PLUS). The price should be around 10 euros for 2 cells.

HLG session at the F3F french championship

Here are some pictures about a HLG session at the F3F french championship, while waiting for the wind or in the evening when returning from the slope. On these pictures you will recognize the Elf, the SalPeter and the Blaster 3.



French F3F championship 2011

Last Week-end was organized the French F3F Championship in the north-east of France (route des crête / Alsace). 27 Competitors over the 40 pilots qualified went to the 3 days competition. Weather forecast was not encouraging at all with low wind and rain.
On saturday, it was very cold with around 10 degrees only, but we didn't get any rain. We started with 3 rounds, and 2 cancelled rounds because of 30 minutes interruptions for low wind (under 3 m/s). Sunday, we spent the all day on the slope with a sunny and sometimes fresh temperatures. No rounds were completed but the big thermals here and there allowed to everybody to enjoy free flying, huge altitude gain, vertical dives, HLG, Light Foamies, etc ..






In the evening, the organiser prepared flammekueches to everyone. flammekueche is an Alsatian dish composed of thin bread dough rolled out in a rectangle (traditionally) or a circle, which is covered with cream, thinly sliced raw onions and lardons It is one of the most famous gastronomical specialties of the region.
At the end of the second day, we had only 3 rounds in the pocket which means a not valid championship. It was mandatory to complete at least one additional round on monday. But the weather forecast was very pessimistic with low cloud, and rain. We arrived at 9 am on the parking, in the fog and rain, but decided to walk to the slope around 12:30am with a very thin chance to have a window to fly. After 45minutes, the clouds climbed, and cleared the slope. The wind was low but over 3 m/s. The orgniser therefore decided to launch the 4th round. Lift was poor. We had 7 reflghts, but finally the 4th round has been completed.


Alexis Maréchal becomes the 2011 french champion. He flew his Alliaj HM very consistently and smoothly during the 4 rounds. On my side, I managed to finish vice-champion which is finally a good result considering the very bad start I did. In the first round, I got extremely low lift and marginal conditions, but not during 20 consecutive seconds so my time (62s) was valid ... too bad. It was the 26th times over 27 competitors. In round 2, I flew a good run (53s), but Andreas Fricke killed the round with a 42s. With two low scores, competition was very badly engaged for me. Fortunately, I killed the next round with Yves Tirand, doing a 43, when other pilots were around 50 and 60 s. For the last round, I was flying in second position in the starting order. I did a good 51s when most people were around 60s. This last round saved my competition with a very good progression: 26th after round 1, 20th after round 2, 7th after round 3, and 2nd after round 4 !
To complete the podium, Frederic Hours on Freestyler 3 was a bit unlucky as his 38s flew away with the cancellation of a round after a 30 minutes interruption.
On the plane side, the Alliaj HM was well represented, followed by the Vampire and then the freestyler. I flew the Vampire all the week-end and was happy with it and the settings I published recently. The Vampire demonstrated a very good capabilities to fly fast when empty or with very few ballast.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Vampire F3F settings

Below are my current settings on the Vampire. There are suitable for F3F of course, and adapted to my flying style and habits.




Miniature fake video

Even better than miniature fake photos, here is a miniature fake video from Keith Loutit, a photographer and filmmaker living in Sidney. His work is just unbelievable. Just have a look to his website to see other video.



Sunday, June 5, 2011

Miniature fakes

Miniature faking is a way to postprocess photograph to look like a photograph of a miniature scale model. The technic consist in blurring some parts of the picture to simulate a very short depth of field of a close up photography. Then you can enhance colors up to saturation to make the scene mmore unreal. This is a funny way to valorise your aerial pictures in a different manner.





I discovered this a long time ago, but never tried because using Photoshop was a bit painful and complex to obtain good result. Recently, I read on RCGroups that a website was proposing to do the modifications online, with very few parameters, and the ability to save the result on disk.

The website is http://tiltshiftmaker.com


The results depends greatly of the original picture, the angle of the shot, colors, details, etc ...
More information about Miniature Faking on Wikipedia.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Ambrosia F3X Settings

Below are my current settings on the Ambrosia F3X. There are suitable for F3F of course, and adapted to my flying style and habits.


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Second Airshow video

Here is the second video about the Grenoble - St Geoirs Airshow the 22th of May. This time, the video is about different planes like the Rafale, the DC3, the Grumman Avenger, the spitfire, the seafury, the tigre helicopter and some aerobatics on cap 10 or Epsilon.





The Third and last video will be about the Brietling jet patrol.

Mistral Soaring - Rognac

Yesterday we had a good friendly winter contest in Rognac, between Aix en Provence and Marseille. I left Grenoble aroudn 7am under the sn...