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Thread: Flying Condor2

  1. #21
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Kelly View Post
    Besides racing, we also have the opportunity to learn how to avoid mid air collisions. As all of you know, when you are circling in a thermal with another glider, you typically will not collide with him/her if you are both at the same altitude and flying the same flight track. However, most all of you also know that if your radius of turn is inside of the glider in front of you, then eventually you will collide, if you are at the same altitude. In primary flight training in the military we all learned to do the basic rejoin. We start our flying in formation, separate with a 180 degree turn, first the lead and then the wingman. Lead would then establish a constant speed, 30 degree banked turn, while the wingman would cut slightly inside the turn, and as physics would have it, the two ships would magically come together. The learning point is driven home when you try to save a bad closure rate. (Like turning inside of another glider in a thermal)' If you try ever try to salvage a poor closure at the last minute by trying to turn harder inside of the other ship - BOOM! You lose sight of lead for sure and probably will have a mid-air!

    Here's how you set it up: You fly steady 30 deg bank circles from 5,000 ft down to 2,000 ft. You save your flight track, and then fly the same flight track, but be sure you have the ghost of the first flight track selected before you begin.

    On flight #1 I started overhead Colusa and turned west for a mile or so then established a steady 30 degree banked turn at 80 kts.. that is a standard turning rejoin maneuver.

    On flight #2 I started 15 seconds after I saw ship #1 start, flew the same flight path, and then rejoined on #1 after he began his turn. Then, on the third flight I was now ship #3, and I started 15 seconds after ship #2, followed them and joined on them. It is all much easier said than done - believe me.


    Here are a couple of snap shots as we were pretty close to flying in formation on the rejoin.

    We all landed at Colusa after many many 360 turns from 5,000 ft down to 1,000 ft.

    Attachment 5905 Attachment 5906


    Here I am landing on the right wing of #2. Note that #1 is already on the ground.


    Attachment 5907

    The second shot shows shadow of #2 on my left, and # 1 already stopped up ahead.. Another great flight!

    Attachment 5908



    end
    Peter, thanks again for the tutorial material on Condor2. I have so far used C2 with the Byron landscape to focus on
    (a) practicing flying fundaments: landings in a variety of wind conditions; thermaling mechanics, landing without spoilers...., and (b) learning to recognize land-outs and TPs in and around WSC and out toward Goat Mtn. So now, thanks to you I have a new set of exercises to work on. I'll set up the 1-wsc-cooks-3 sis-wsc.fpl and Yolo to WSC, and maybe the maneuvering with "ghosts" as practice for thermaling with others.
    Looking forward to clear skies over Williams.

  2. #22
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Leon said:
    So now, thanks to you I have a new set of exercises to work on. I'll set up the 1-wsc-cooks-3 sis-wsc.fpl and Yolo to WSC, and maybe the maneuvering with "ghosts" as practice for thermaling with others.
    Leon and all other pilots,

    I have a simpler exercise which would be much less complicated, and would undoubtedly be a very good learning tool.

    All try to fly the fastest speed from Yolo to WSC (i.e. complete the task in the shortest time) .
    All start the same.. (5,000 over Yolo) race timing starts within a few seconds of release.
    All finish in the same manner.. a "Rolling Finish" landing to the north at WSC - and no crash!
    All use the 20 meter, Duo Discus XL, with NO alterations to the weight or CG of the ship.
    Wind is 360 / 5 kts, no wave, no upper level winds, no high clouds

    Pick the strongest thermal combo you can devise ( temps/ cloud base/ strength/ width, etc.)

    I think you may be the champion at this Leon. You probably have the most experience. I gave myself very strong thermals with 12,000 cloud bases and ended up with slower speed when I repeated the task. I found out that flying faster is not the solution.

    Here is my last thermal set up, and my last baro trace (not too good of a performance). I know I can do better. Maybe tomorrow.

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    end
    Peter Kelly

  3. #23
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Guess I should share the IGC track on this recorded try from Yolo to WSC.


    You can see I thought the lift was better along the ridge on east side of Capay Vly, so I went over there. I figured the thermals were kicking off along that rising terrain, and I was correct about the thermals, but I was all the way down to 665 AGL ( 1300MSL +/- ) when I finally caught my lift (see legend along the bottom of the graphic.

    Attachment 5911
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Peter Kelly

  4. #24
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    I flew (Condor) again today - the same task as yesterday: Yolo Apt to WSC. It is a distance of only 37 NM.

    Today I..
    - reduced the thermal height.
    - set cloud base at 6900. See thermal setting below. (Yesterday I had the cloud base at 12,300)

    Click image for larger version. 

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    There is a basic rule for thermals in the valley - maybe somebody has a refinement of this....
    thermals will often be spaced three times further apart then they are high.
    e.g. one mile high they will be 3 miles apart,
    two miles high, they will be six miles apart.

    Today I never stopped to turn in a thermal. My average speed today was 63.97 kts. which is way better than yesterday, but it could be better.

    Today I used the MacCready (MC) a bit better, but I was still way off. I didn't increase the MC to MC2 or MC3 before starting the flight, as I should have done, considering the appearance of the clouds and the forecast (my thermal settings).

    I then would have flown faster (assuming I followed it) between thermals right from the beginning, and accepted a lower altitude as I traveled towards the goal.

    I suspect my speed will be better if I fly best speed for the conditions, right from the start. The polar (as shown in Condor) says to fly 74 kts with an MC2 and 5 kts of headwind.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Since I could see ahead and I knew I would have thermals the entire route, and since I was not planning to stop and thermal at any time (ground speed is zero while turning), I should have flown faster between the thermals, and then, increasingly lower as I neared the goal of WSC. As it was, I stayed too high for too long.

    I'm not sure what the lift band was today, but it was probably from about 1,500 ft to 6,000.
    But I didn't need to climb higher than my starting altitude of 5,000.

    I need to accept lower altitudes while enroute. If my altitude had more of a slope to the Baro (see the blue line), that would seem to give me the fastest speed.
    Maybe I'll fly it again tomorrow.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Peter Kelly

  5. #25
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Today - Thurs 10/08 I flew the same task as yesterday: Yolo Apt to WSC.

    Thermals and wind parameters remained the same.

    Today I set MC 2.1 and tried to fly the commanded speed.
    No turns were made, I only pushed and pulled - slowing to min sink while passing through thermals. Minor deviation to the direct course line were made so as to fly below clouds, but probably no more than 20 deg off course line for a few mnutes.

    The results:
    Here is the Baro for today
    Click image for larger version. 

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    and as compared to yesterday .... Click image for larger version. 

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    Performance:

    Today

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    as compared to yesterday ... Click image for larger version. 

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    Distance flown on each day are the same - 37.28 nm
    However the speed yesterday was better at 63.97,
    while today the speed was only 62.16.

    Obviously my theory about having a constant slope baro trace (closer to the blue line) would yield a faster speed was not valid.

    I am unsure how to increase my speed. Any suggestions?

    Lacking any suggestions, I'm guessing I should look at my polar again.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The curve goes steeper after about 80 or 85 kts, which corresponds to a MC2 and a 5 kts headwind.
    So I'll fly about 80 kts, or as commanded, for the first 15 minutes (the first half of the flight).

    After 15 minutes, I'll then climb in the next thermal and take it up high enough to make it home on a MC5.

    I'll head for home, fly the commanded STF speeds, decreasing the MC downward from MC 5 all the way to 0, as needed to make it home.

    We'll see how this goes tomorrow, but I think I know where this is headed.

    On some later flight I will take each thermal to the useable top, right from the start. The highest MC setting available is MC5 on the polar, so I will set that one, and once in my last thermal head for home at the commanded speed.
    I'll do that on a later flight - not tomorrow.


    Maximum Mc with 5 kt headwind

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    Peter Kelly

  6. #26
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Kelly View Post
    Today - Thurs 10/08 I flew the same task as yesterday: Yolo Apt to WSC.

    Thermals and wind parameters remained the same.

    Today I set MC 2.1 and tried to fly the commanded speed.
    No turns were made, I only pushed and pulled - slowing to min sink while passing through thermals. Minor deviation to the direct course line were made so as to fly below clouds, but probably no more than 20 deg off course line for a few mnutes.

    The results:
    Here is the Baro for today
    Click image for larger version. 

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    and as compared to yesterday .... Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	5920


    Performance:

    Today

    Name:  10-8-flt info.JPG
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    as compared to yesterday ... Click image for larger version. 

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    Distance flown on each day are the same - 37.28 nm
    However the speed yesterday was better at 63.97,
    while today the speed was only 62.16.

    Obviously my theory about having a constant slope baro trace (closer to the blue line) would yield a faster speed was not valid.

    I am unsure how to increase my speed. Any suggestions?

    Lacking any suggestions, I'm guessing I should look at my polar again.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	next flight.JPG 
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    The curve goes steeper after about 80 or 85 kts, which corresponds to a MC2 and a 5 kts headwind.
    So I'll fly about 80 kts, or as commanded, for the first 15 minutes (the first half of the flight).

    After 15 minutes, I'll then climb in the next thermal and take it up high enough to make it home on a MC5.

    I'll head for home, fly the commanded STF speeds, decreasing the MC downward from MC 5 all the way to 0, as needed to make it home.

    We'll see how this goes tomorrow, but I think I know where this is headed.

    On some later flight I will take each thermal to the useable top, right from the start. The highest MC setting available is MC5 on the polar, so I will set that one, and once in my last thermal head for home at the commanded speed.
    I'll do that on a later flight - not tomorrow.


    Maximum Mc with 5 kt headwind

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    Peter
    Thanks for suggesting a straight-forward example for beginners like me to use to untangle the less-than-clear Condor2 instructions for creating a task (race-in time, time-window, and conditions under which the race begins and ends). Q: What distinguishes a "rolling finish" from merely entering the finish triangle; where should the apex of the finish quarter-circle be placed; is it unnecessary, then, to circle the Start and Stop gates?

    It's one thing to practice thermaling with no real goal; another to have the competing objectives in a timed race. The lessons learned on my first attempt were numerous: fighting the urge to stop at every sign of lift (like wanting to gas up at every freeway exit!); the tradeoff between getting low and losing time in unnecessary thermaling; how airspeed and trip time are complicated by unforeseen lift and sink; how far to stray from the line connecting TPs.,

    Using your parameters, here are my results:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Not very impressive -- but at least I didn't land out.
    Among the many flaws, I arrived at WSC too high and used spoilers to lose altitude rather than increase airspeed on the last leg.
    Rather arbitrarily set MC=2.5 and pretty much ignored it; not sure what it should have been (In a glider, I have typically set it at ~ 1). Q: Does MC setting tell you when & how long to "stop for gas"?
    Again, thanks. Leon
    Would appreciate any critiques. Will look over your latest (Wed.) flights

  7. #27
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Leon,
    thanks very much. You made my day. I have all your answers (thus far).
    i will skip the plan I Had mentioned earlier today. I’m going to jump right to the correct answer. Tomorrow.

    tomorrow, I set the MC to 5. I’ll set 5 because I know those are at least 5 kit thermals.
    i will fly the STF speeds as much as possible. I’ll climb to near The top of each thermal and make the final glide as soon as possible.

    to answer your start and finish question...

    do not circle the start or finish gates... at least not in this exercise.
    set “race starts “ to one minute.
    hit space bar at 10 seconds prior to “race begins”.. Start about 10 Seconds later.
    if you just fly straight, you start within a few seconds. This eliminates start heights differences. Everyone in this contest starts at the same time and at the same altitude.


    on finish you need to cross WSC at mid field. If you do it in the air at 50 ft, you need enough speed to pull up and do a safe landing. Thus, you had excess speed on final glide. That just adds to the variables for each pilot stats. A rolling finish is when you Roll across mid field... roll across the finish line. You can still be in the air, but you need to land safely before the end of the runway... no crashes allowed. I’ve done a couple of rolling finishes on this task without problem. What I shoot for is to do a long flare, and float until I hear the crowd cheering, As that is when you know you had a good finish, then I allow the ship to touch down. Safely.. before I run out of runway. You’ll see what I mean when it happens to you.

    the rolling finish encourages optimum glide to the finish.

    maccready does not tell you when to stop for gas. You determine your next point to stop for gas. MC tells you what speed to fly STF between gas stations, and. When to leave the last gas station.

    hopefully, I’ll demo this all tomorrow, when I fly properly, according to maccready , with consideration given to my polar.
    Peter Kelly

  8. #28
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Well I did it. I flew again today, and although I started out doing it "properly", I had a problem (major understatement).

    On "TASK" tab, I set "Race In" to 1 minute.

    While waiting for the race to start, I set the MacCready to 5. It's that kind of day.

    One the Race was "on". I released (space bar) and I pushed it over and trimmed it to fly 80 kts and flew through the first thermal, since I wasn't ready for it yet, and I could see a good one just ahead.

    In the first thermal I climbed to near cloud base and then accelerated as I left the thermal top - pushing over, and went about five miles before climbing again.

    Had another good climb and probably wasn't going to climb again for the remainder of the flight, even though I had about 20 miles to go.
    Between thermals I was flying over 100 kts - as commanded on my STF. I was struggling between pages of the PDA, but at the same time accelerating.... but then.... disaster struck, I slipped past red line while fiddling with my PDA.
    Wings started to flutter, vibrate and oscillate and the wing on the right side ripped off. What a terrible experience.
    Too real. You can see Rumsey Gap in the background in these screen captures of the flight.
    I watched the ship spiral to the ground with a half of a main wing... all the way to the ground.
    Ugh.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    After that crash I was too stressed to fly again today. I'll try again tomorrow.
    But I am sure that MC 5 is the secret, climb at 10 kts in the good thermals, follow the STF. When you can make it to the goal at MC 5 start your final glide. Reduce your MC and fly slower as you get below glide path. And don't fly over red line - not a good thing!

    My baro for today:

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    end
    Last edited by Peter Kelly; 10-10-2020 at 01:30 PM.
    Peter Kelly

  9. #29
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    I am rethinking my use of Condor2

    It is a very good training tool. There is no doubt about that, however, as I have aptly demonstrated, a person an easily make mistakes that would be otherwise fatal if you were actually in a glider.

    For me, I don't want to practice bad habits in a sim. Sure, I have thousands of hours flying, but so much of what we do is a function of habit. I don't want to practice bad habits.

    If you practice bad habits in a simulator (like allowing yourself to be distracted by computer screen inputs) and those excursions from safe practices cause the wings to come off, then maybe, just maybe we should pay careful attention to the manner in which we train ourselves.

    As for me, I will continue to use Condor 2 to enjoy some flying when I can't get into the air in a real glider, but I will now be more aware of the fact that I might well be creating bad habits for myself.
    Peter Kelly

  10. #30
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    Re: Flying Condor2

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Kelly View Post
    I am rethinking my use of Condor2

    It is a very good training tool. There is no doubt about that, however, as I have aptly demonstrated, a person an easily make mistakes that would be otherwise fatal if you were actually in a glider.

    For me, I don't want to practice bad habits in a sim. Sure, I have thousands of hours flying, but so much of what we do is a function of habit. I don't want to practice bad habits.

    If you practice bad habits in a simulator (like allowing yourself to be distracted by computer screen inputs) and those excursions from safe practices cause the wings to come off, then maybe, just maybe we should pay careful attention to the manner in which we train ourselves.

    As for me, I will continue to use Condor 2 to enjoy some flying when I can't get into the air in a real glider, but I will now be more aware of the fact that I might well be creating bad habits for myself.

    Re. thermaling exercise:
    Peter, thanks again for an interesting exercise. With practice, I am learning to catch up and fall in to the lead glider's pattern.
    Leon
    Last edited by Leon McCaughan; 10-19-2020 at 09:39 AM.

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