Flight #817 SCA

After a particularly difficult night where sleep was elusive and disturbed I awoke at 0600 to clear and calm conditions.  I pulled on my shorts and left the house immediately.   Perhaps the clerk at Circle K could tell I needed it, because she didn’t charge me for the coffee.  

Arriving at the field, I discovered the same old mistake rearing its ugly head. After my last flight, I had bagged the wing out in the field and motored back to the truck killing the engine with the throttle kill switch and… as has happened so many times before, I left the key in the ignition, draining the battery.  If there is one thing I would change about the Falcon, its the keyed ignition.  I would much prefer a start button that toggles on or off … Anything to keep me from repeating this bone headed blunder.
For two seconds I considered returning to the house and going to back to bed…. Sometimes your just not meant to fly.  But the sun was starting to rise and conditions were perfect so I unloaded the rig, laid out the wing and jump started the Paramotor.  
Take off was a little sloppy because I got on the breaks a bit to soon and had to milk it in order to climb out and away from the airstrip… but once up … It was magic.
I climbed to 1000 feet and flew over by the radio tower.  A couple of days ago I had a start, when I couldn’t locate it even though I knew it was close by.  My head was on a swivel until I finally spotted it an knew I wasn’t going to skewer myself 800 feet above the surface.  This morning the anti collision lights were on and it was easy to spot.  I’m not sure what the problem was but I’m not going to venture into the area until I’ve got it pegged.
I did experience an unusual kink and it’s one that the manual mentions.  When you get a particular trim and trust, the wing will start to oscillate.  It’s not dramatic just a gentle persistent rocking.  I don’t think it’s anything to worry about because it doesn’t keep building to greater and greater swings.  If I change the thrust, it settles down and the same, if I change the trim.  I’m going to watch and see if I can induce it with different trim setting.  It’s torque related I’m sure.
For the first time in months, the air close to the surface was relatively smooth.  There was a light breeze  from the South so I descended toward the North end of the field, closed the trimmers and enjoyed a long slow run back toward the tower.  I didn’t have my GPS with me and so I don’t have exact speed measurements but it was classic low and slow.  I was starting to feel better about things.
After and hour  and fifteen I returned to the field a new man.

Author: JoeO

Powered Paraglider pilot since 2005

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