About A470 Soaring

This is the blog for a few guys who spend their time flying radio controlled gliders, or slope soarer's, from the many and varied slopes around SE Wales.

This usually begins at the northern end of Cardiff, driving north up the A470 up to the Heads of the Valley's and the southern fringe of the Brecon Beacons. But the A470 road continues its windy way all the way to N Wales.

There are many slopes available for most wind directions, the most famous being the area between Nant-y-Moel and Treorchi known as The Bwlch, which has some of the best slopes and flying in Europe with many F3F competitions being held there each year and visited by many fliers from Europe and around the world. At 1500 feet (450m) above sea level, there is usually more wind than not, and certainly more than at sea level.

If you require any further information, are new to slope soaring or are visiting the area, please contact Steve at steve.houghton59@gmail.com . I look forward to hearing from you.

Take a look at Page 2 (look below and to the left here) for Google maps of our most popular Flying Sites.

Monday, 22 December 2014

Christmas Wishes from A470 Soaring

Due to Christmas and poor flying weather, I haven't been able to fly for the last couple of weeks and, I'm away the weekend after Christmas visiting family and friends but, I shall be flying the week after.

So I would like to wish all the regular guys at A470 Soaring, and all of our visitors around the world, a very Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year and I look forward to seeing you all on the slopes very soon.

Friday, 5 December 2014

Decisions, decisions

Once Christmas is over, I shall be looking to purchase a new glider. I want to take up flat field thermal soaring for those days when the forecast is showing wind speeds of 10 mph and less from Spring through to early Autumn and it isn't worth the drive to the slopes. Also it would be handy to fly in the evenings when I get home from work as the slopes are too far away for me to do that.

So I've been thinking long and hard about my requirements. It needs to be electric powered as I may be limited to field size for launching. My high start is 100m long and stretches to double its length, so on my current fields, I'm limited by the wind direction for that.

I want something of at least 2.5m span, preferably with a GF fuselage, with ailerons and flaps, and of ARTF build as I am limited to building on my dining room table, which still has to be used as a dining table.

T9 Hobbysport has a range of models from Topmodel, a supplier from the Czech Republic and I have shortlisted 4, the Avia 2.5m V tail with built up wings, Gracia 3.07m V tail with built up wings, Grafas 3.07m cross tail with built up wings, and the Fascination F5J 3.6m cross or V tail with balsa veneered foam wings.

If anyone has any experience of any of these, I would love to hear from you.

Avia 2.5m

Fascination F5J 3.6m

Gracia 3.07m 

Grafas 3.07m 

Monday, 1 December 2014

A welcome visitor to S Wales Sloping

This weekend, we were paid a visit by Andy Meade, who is well known amongst the PSS community and I met up with Andy on Saturday at Manmoel Common, the ENE facing slope which overlooks Festival Park Designer Discount Shopping Outlet at Ebbw Vale.

I arrived a while before Andy and our own Mark Williams when the breeze was only just strong enough to keep my Wildthing foamie in the air. By the time they had both arrived, the wind had completely died away and we were just stood there chatting and wondering whether a breeze might appear, but to no avail.

Sunday was a little better. Andy sent me a text message saying he was parked in the Wrecker lay-by at the Bwlch and there was a breeze blowing. I arrived about an hour later but again, there was only just enough air to keep a foamie up and found Andy and Mark, once again, chatting and wondering.

As the morning wore on and the ground warmed up in the sunshine, so the breeze picked up, and although it was still very light by Bwlch standards, we did manage to get in some satisfying flying on the north facing VR98 slope.

Down in our neck of the woods, we've never really got into PSS models, so everyone was very interested in seeing Andy's Messerschmitt ME-262, and even more interested to see it fly, and how well it flew indeed. Whether this will spur people to get on to build a PSS model I don't know, but we certainly enjoyed seeing something different on the slopes.

I think Andy enjoyed his time with us and our amazing slopes and that he will return sometime when the wind Gods are more favourable.

Here is some video of Andy flying his Precision Pike and ME-262, and Clive flying his Easy Glider.