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.

Friday, 31 July 2015

Weekend 1st & 2nd August's flying & other stuff

Hi all

Well another weekend is upon us and for once it looks like we may get some flying in on both days.

With light winds forecast for both days, a south westerly on Saturday, I may just head up to the Meio around about lunch time for a couple of hours and give the Impala another chuck to see if I've got the C of G right before next weekends PSSA meet in N Wales.

Sunday is looking like a light south easterly, so I think Back of Wrecker at the Bwlch is going to be the place to be, hopefully with that breeze blowing up the valley we should get something close to 20 mph on the ridge, enough to keep most models happy.

I shall be getting the PSS EE Lightning, the MB-326 Impala and maybe a couple of light wind sports models ready next week for Friday's drive up to Abersoch on the LLeyn Peninsula for the PSSA Fly for Fun weekend, 8th & 9th August. With any luck we'll get a bit more wind than the last meet in Llandudno in June where we only had between 9 - 12 mph.

Paul Hampshire and a few of the guys from Slope Soaring Sussex are visiting the Bwlch next Friday to Sunday. I think Phil is going to meet up with them on the Sunday but I'm sure they'd be happy with some local company should anyone be available to fly on Friday afternoon or Saturday also.

So that's about all for this week, have a good weekend and I hope to see some of you on the slopes.

Happy flying

Sunday, 19 July 2015

The correx Impala flies!

Well, I finally have some video of the the Impala in flight.

The wind was light at an estimated 12 - 16mph, so only just enough air as my correx guru Phil stated to me.

I had removed 30 grams of nose weight after the maiden flight as it was pulling out quickly from a dive test. This time it still pulled out, but only gently. I will remove another 10 grams which will hopefully make the C of G spot on then.

So here it is, the Impala flying on Meio Common.

Happy flying


Sunday, 12 July 2015

Awesome Flying

I decided to head up to Mickey's on Saturday for a couple of hours flying as the weather was dry and a good breeze blowing.

I did load the Impala in the car but as I approached Cardiff I realised that in my haste to get out the door, I had forgotten the wing bands and dowels for holding the wing on. Doh! 

I did enjoy the 20 minute walk along the track to the long, lush, grassy, westerly slope and set up the Signal. 

I gave it the old heave ho and off it went, and it rose up and up and up, with the spectacular lift that Mickey's is so well known for. 

I could perform all the usual aerobatics with ease, with huge loops from level flight, and pulling up to do a stall turn the model just seemed to go on and on vertically for ages before eventually running out of steam and I kicked in full rudder. I also had a couple of goes at performing the rolling circle, which went well until the very last bit, when turning towards me from the left when I bottled out. So I'm about 80% there. Next time eh! 

I had a few good long flights, without seeing another soul up there before packing away, as I was beginning to feel cold. 

My next two weekends are fun packed doing other things but I may be able to sneak in the odd flying hour on the Meio. 

So until next time, happy flying. 

P.S. Here's a pic of my completed correx Impala. 

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Maiden of the Impala

Last Saturday I headed up to the Bwlch bright and early. There was a good south westerly blowing but there was a lot of the wet stuff mixed in and the clag was rolling in up the valley and up and over the ridge of the slope, so there was no chance of me flying. So I thought I might as well stop off and fly on Meio on my drive home.

Phil had told me that the Impala needed a minimum of 15 mph to fly but prefers 20 mph, and I wasn't sure if I was going to get 15 mph on Meio. I needn't have worried as it was blowing an estimated 25 - 30 mph up there.

Mark was there and he launched the Impala for me. It went off straight as a die but I had to hold in quite a lot of down stick to stop it from shooting upwards until I cleared the ridge line, then adjusted the elevator trim to suit.

In that wind she was struggling a bit to penetrate the wind as it does have quite a large frontal area but as I turned to fly along the slope, she went fine.

I tried it on high and low rates, snap flap on and off and she performed well with all of those. She did prove to be a bit nose heavy, which is easily sorted, and I felt it would definitely benefit from a rudder. That maybe something I retrofit at a later date.

On landing, it needs to land close to the top of the slope to keep the air flowing over the wings. If you land a little too far back, it'll tip stall badly.

Unfortunately there isn't any video footage of it flying, hopefully that may happen this week. But now it's flown I'm adding some colour to the bare correx, so it should look a lot nicer soon.

Here's a picture to put you on, until next time, happy flying.


Friday, 3 July 2015

The weekend 4th & 5th July

Hi guys

Well it's looking like Saturday is the day to fly as Sunday looks like being heavy showers with some thunder & lightning thrown in for good measure.

I am heading to the Bwlch first thing in the morning and conditions are looking good for a few hours on Mickey's, with 15 - 18 mph wind forecasted, so Mickey's could easily see 25 mph on the ridge. Just right to maiden my correx built Impalla!

I hope to see some of you up there.

Happy flying