The flying monkeys got me...

Helis and fixed wing

AMA 957918
IRCHA 4345
AMA Intro Pilot Instructor

Sunday, August 12, 2012

First day, first flight, first crash

Today I loaded up for flying! My apartment living requires I adapt to loading my car.
I took the Ultimate with its funky rudder and the Pulse which seemed fine and headed out to Wingmasters field. Met a handful of members, all with really good skills and pristine aircraft... Nice, welcoming guys!
I set up my stuff, and took the Pulse up. There was a brisk crosswind, but nothing I have not flown in before. It was like I had never flown in my life... I took off heading askew down the paved runway, and managed to putz her around in the pattern. Then well before she was due, her power started to drop off, and full throttle did not give me much. I had checked the battery before flight. I was at the wrong end of the field. I brought her around, and managed to head her into the wind, AND SHE WOULD NOT COME DOWN! I was so psyched out by my poor flying that I failed to try the spoilers. She overshot the runway and I knew I did not have enough power to go around. I put her down, not too hard, nice and flat, but the off field cabbage has big chunks in it and she tore off her landing gear, which as always rolled under her and punctured the wing, this time taking out a spar... Her battery was actually fine at 3.75V per cell. WTF.
Crap. Very first flight. Surely they think I'm a twit.
She threw the gear forward after rolling over them.
You can't tell but both wings were punctured through and through by the wheel pants flipping underneath.
Fours hours of work and she is no longer pristine, but looks pretty good:
The Tail vert stab was cracked, I think before the flight, but loosened in flight. I replaced it with one I had from a previous Pulse. I am out of 12x8 Xoar eprops, so I put a 12x6 on her. Wonder if thats a mistake? Ordering more 12x8, and it will be a while until I can fly again.
Mike, Steve, and Jon (and one other guy whose name I missed) were kind to me, and I decided to take the Ultimate up, and flew her better, but still without confidence or my usual skill, for several packs. She survived and I handled the cross wind much better. I learned to put her down on the runway, which while not particulalry narrow, required a finer degree of airmanship than landing on a wide field as I have been acustomed to. It also required better to touchdowns as the asphalt is unforgiving.
Thank goodness I did not bring a heli.
Now that I have my "first Tee jitters" behind me, hopefully my next flight will be more enjoyable!

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