First evening flight in a long time. I arrived at the field an hour prior to sunset. The wind was a steady 7 gusting to 10. I took my time setting up, hoping for the glass off” that never came. The weeds are too tall in the field so I drove around until I found a section of road that faced the breeze. Nice clean pavement. I set up , tucking the forward edge.
Takeoff was messy. Fortunately the wing came up clean, I committed to launch and ran up the motor. Maybe I’m getting my speed cues from the breeze in my face, it felt fast to me. I tapped the brakes and lifted of and just as quickly , I touched down before starting the climb out. Hardly what I expected with a 7 knot headwind.
In my haste I left the GoPro on the runway, which was just as well because it was bumpy everywhere I went. The wind that was coming from the NNW was twitchy and bouncing the trike and I at about a level 6. The Sky was beautiful with the sun setting opposed to the rising of a full moon. Unfortunately there was a marine haze sucking the color and drama from the image, spoiling the photography.
It had started to calm down at 1200 feet but it had also turned cold enough that I was wishing for warmer clothing. 😄
About 15 minutes in, the winds started picking up. I turned back and descended for landing. At 150 feet it was bouncing so much that I changed course slightly so that I would set down in the weeds instead of the pavement. It turned out to be unnecessary because the air settled down at the very end and I greased in for a nice landing.
My skills are improving. I’m still not happy with folding the leading center edge under the wing to keep it out of the prop wash but I’m getting used to it. The trike rolls forward about 3 feet before the wash starts to inflate the wing and its abrupt and strong when it catches. This morning I had severe oscillations, probably because the prop wash caught the wing improperly. I was happy to be able to back off the throttle and get it back overhead before committing to takeoff. It helped to be on smooth and clean blacktop.
Yesterday’s flight was also good. I fumbled with the A’s because the wing was starting to dance as soon as I started the motor. Once up, all was good. I’m getting familiar with the wing again. I started a spiral and was surprised at how fast the wing descended. It’s a little disconcerting to be hanging out so much in turns. Not having a side rail or a seat that wraps is taking some getting some getting used to. I don’t feel like I’m going to fall off but I’m sure it looks that way.
The wind was 5 to 7 from the west. The field was wet and the humidity was 99%. I found a road that was pointed into the wind, set up and launched without incident. The density of Altitude was obviously higher than normal by the long runout at takeoff. I popped a little brake when it started to feel like there was something sticky holding me down. The climb out was bumpy and slow until I achieved 200 ft where the air smoothed out.
Next time I’m going to pull the wing into a chevron before tucking the front center cells away from the prop wash. This morning the wing came up very quickly but it was strange to have the A’s so mushy for the first few feet.
Once up, all was good . I boated around the patch penetrating into the wind NNW at 10mph and racing back toward the LZ AT 50+.
The landing was fine. The front wheel is a few inches lower than they were on thumper. I’m going to leave it for now but may move the hang points back a bit in the future.
When I got home I opened up the wing in the guest room to dry.
It’s been 8 weeks since I had reconstructive surgery on my intestines. The external waste bags have been removed and the intestines have been reconnected. I’ve been anxious to get back into the air but the weather has not been cooperative.
A couple of days ago I went out for an evening flight only to get soaked by a sneaky rainstorm that approached from behind.
This morning the humidity was 100% and the wing absorbed enough water during set up that it was not Flyable. It might have been possible had there been a breeze to launch into but this morning it was nil wind.
It’s a bit humbling after more than 1000 flights to have such a miserable showing. I will dry the wing and watch the weather for another opportunity.