The flying monkeys got me...

Helis and fixed wing

AMA 957918
IRCHA 4345
AMA Intro Pilot Instructor

Friday, March 16, 2012

Hangar 9 Sopwith Maidened!

Well, the day finally came. I wanted her first flight to be on a calm day so I could flynher without distractions, and yesterday was that day. She fills my Lexus CT200h, so only the Stearman and a coulle helis got to come out to BMF.

Kenny Chanlder helped me set her up, preflight her, and spot her on the runway. I was a little nervus, but I had pschologically gotten to the point I was going to fly her if I had to throw her pieces into the wind. She has a bigger engine an prop, and I had learned a few things with mynfirst two maiden attempts. I throttled her up, worked her stering down the runway, pulling bak the stick, and she took off with a lot of left rudder to overcome the torque roll! I got it off as fast as I could and she straightened out after a brief flirt with a left turn, but she was flying! Kenny was yelling, 'CLIMB, CLIMB!" as I was thrilled she didn't turn into the ground, and was focusing on keeping her level. She climbed out with a lot of work, and it took several passes to get her trimmed out. Despite her twisty wing, she flew awesome! She has power to spare and I stated settling down. She doesn't meed a lot of elevator ofr rudder range of motion, but she needs all of her ailerons. And man is she loud with the wind whipping through the rigging! She handles well, though sometimes she ignores a comand pereferring to fly the wind, then suddenly changing her mind. She is heavy and flies like it. I find she does awesome at half throttle flying scale, with scale aerobatics. Landing her is somehting I need some work on. She needs to land on her mains and roll out without tipping head over heals. Getting her butt down too early can lead to some nasty ground handling, something done carefully with this skid tail dragger. All in all, she's a blast, and I enjoyed several flights before calling it a day! But man, she takes up the whole car and so there are few other aircraft on days I take her out to play...








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