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, 27 November 2017

Genesis SL maiden flight

Yayyyyyy I've finally managed to maiden the Genesis 😊

On Saturday afternoon I took the Genesis and Wildthing up to Meio Common for an hour or two's flying session. I was the only person there, the wind was a bit variable, WNW - NW and chilly.

I had been having some issues with one of the elevon control snakes on the Genesis as I had used CA to glue them into the quick link extender. It just wasn't taking for some reason and once on the slope I discovered that this was the case again. I really should have checked it before leaving home. Fortunately I still had the Wildthing to fly. But there was something very strange happening with that also.

Upon launching I needed loads of down elevator trim, but also, a ton of right aileron was needed also. I can understand a few clicks of down elevator and aileron but the amount I had to give it was ridiculous. So I don't know why such a drastic change was needed as I haven't altered anything, so a major inspection is required.

I did get the Wildthing flying well and the wind was quite good, although with some thermals coming through I did get caught out once or twice in the black hole left behind in the thermals wake and the model would sink like a stone.

Chris turned up, shortly followed by Nick. Chris set up his Ascot F3F but there was a problem with one of the aileron servos not wanting to work, so he had to resort to only flying his M60.

A passing shower of rain mixed with hail curtailed flying for a short while, but once the sun reappeared, the wind died along with it and we found ourselves scratching around for lift. So Chris and I decided to pack up for the day and headed on home and watch the rugby.

I had been to a charity fundraiser on Saturday evening with Michelle, who had stayed over at my place, but after she left me by mid morning I was able to use 15 minute epoxy to glue that snake into both extenders on the Genesis and I headed up to the Bwlch where I knew a few of the guys were heading to fly on the NW facing Ice Cream Slope.

As I was beginning my walk up to the slope, I heard my phone bleep with a message and noticed a couple of the guys beginning to walk back to the lay-by. The wind was changing direction and so a walk over to the westerly side of Mickeys was required.

Mike and David decided they'd had enough and were going home, which left Richard and myself to carry on and walk up the track.

We did try to fly right at the top of track, just where it levels out, which gave me a chance for a couple of tentative throws over a gentle part of the slope, before it went over the steep part, to check out whether I had added enough balance weight into the nose and also to check the control throws and trim.

With a couple of adjustments made, I launched it off the slope, and it flew OK with just a couple of clicks of trim required to get it to fly straight and level. I made a few gentle figure of eight passes along the slope and I gained some height in order to perform a dive test to test the C of G position, although I was sensing it felt good, and in fact it was spot on, neither wanting to pull out or tuck under in the dive. It did need more aileron authority so I flicked a switch on the TX to change to high rates, and that improved the roll rate immediately with much quicker rolls and sharper turns.

The wind was still changing direction and it was becoming increasingly difficult to fly from left to right, so we moved a bit further along, and shortly after we had to move again to the furthest westerly part of Mickeys, where it was better but the air was very turbulent, which is strange for this slope as the air is usually very smooth.

It didn't take me long to get used to flying the Genesis and before long Richard and I were performing some formation flying with his Genesis and generally having a good time.

Eventually the cold got the better of our hands and we decided to call it a day after a couple of hours flying.

It appears that my idea of changing from exposed elevon control rods, (which could be susceptible to damage during a combat session), to burying snakes into the foam, was a good one as they worked very well. My "sandwich" method of covering this type of foam model works very well indeed too. My Wildthing was the first model I tried this method on and two years later, with a lot of flying under its belt, it still looks superb.

So check out the video guys and let me know what you think.

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