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25. desember 2006

Logostick, new DLG from ET-Air



I will soon post more pictures of this little beautiful model on www.et-air.com

The quality is very high and it fits ET-Air standard very well.

Happy Holidays



Happy Holidays to all people reading this blog!

I am enjoying some days off and I try to do some web work to catch up a little bit. Today I was out doing some photos in the local river. This picture is taken in the middle of the river system near by my flat and is barely moving forward here. This place is well known for its birds and in fact I was using one of the birdspotter towers when I shoot this picture. This and many other pictures will be used in a DVD compilation I am making together with a friend. It will be ready next Christmas. We will use still photos, ground video, aerial stills and aerial video to cover the complete river system.

The next picture is taken where the river starts.



16. desember 2006

Trip to Slovakia


Check out ET-Air news section to find a little story from the trip and some pictures.

I had with me Alex McMeekin and we had a good trip and met some interesting people.

Jano, Brano and Espen at Aerodesign workshop.

30. oktober 2006

Some news

Check out www.et-air.com for some news about the new fuselage for RaceM.
The picture shows a CAD drawing made by Jan Hansen, Denmark.
The positives will be milled in aluminium and will hopefully be ready early next year.

18. oktober 2006

Trip to Hanstholm, Denmark

I knew already 3 days before leaving for Denmark that it would be a relaxed weekend and no F3F flying. The reason was a high pressure building up over southern Scandinavia and this normally does not give much wind. And unfortunately I was right. Very little wind but a very nice trip. The first picture show Jesper Jensen, Keld Jensen and Jan Hansen doing free flying while we waited for more wind. Next picture show their models. Last picture we can see Joergen, Regnar, Knud and Kai. In the background you can spot Rolf with his new camera. Maybe they were discussing the wind that never came.....












8. oktober 2006

Finally some practice....

I can't remember the last time I got some good F3F practice in. (maybe I have to read my blog)
Well conditions was nice with around 7-8ms almost straight into my home slope Hodne only 8 minutes away from my home. I had two good 10 minutes practice runs with my RaceM F3F http://www.et-air.com/index.cfm?id=85380 and it felt pretty good. I tested several different turning styles and now I have no idea of what to do....
Then came Paal and flew his paraglider and I got some pics of him before I grabbed my video camera. This guy is amazing with his paraglider. I hope to edit the video and post it so you can see for yourself. He does with his body the same things we do with models. I am as ever very impressed with his flying. Paal is besides a paraglider also a model enthusiast of course, he flies helis, power and sailplanes.

2. oktober 2006

Airbus training at Sola Airport



I just would like to share this picture of SAS Airbus 340 doing test flights at Sola Airport Stavanger, Norway. Picture was taken in 2002.

1. oktober 2006

Test flying a new field

Today I drove half an hour to test a new flying field made by Jonny Ueland on his farm. The airstrip can be used for microlight aircraft and model airplanes. I had my winch with me but I decided to use the rubber as it was quite windy. As normal I could not get any friends to join me so I did not fly so much, but the air was quite good and I had some good flights.
I then took a couple of flights with the heli to take some pictures.

17. september 2006

Viking Race 2006, Scotland

This years Viking Race was the all time biggest with almost 90 competitors. The debate is already on if this is too much or not. I will get back with more on this and other F3F topics later.
We only managed to get 5 rounds in and with typical inland conditions this was not enough to have an even race. So many "good" pilots ended up way down the list and even the winners were very familiar there were lots of surprises in the top 20 list.
The event was organized by a few Scottish enthusiast and a handful of English/international helpers. The step-in CD made a couple of wrong decisions in my point of view but the weather was the main problem with no wind and cross wind. We also flew all the days at East Lomond hill which certainly was quite demanding for the pilots.
If we had managed 7-8 rounds I think the competition would have been pretty good.
More to follow.....
Links: www.knewt.com
Well a few days after the event I am still a little disappointed but we must not forget that this is an outdoor event and many things can go wrong. It does not mean we have to keep F3F to the same format and the same rules in the future. We have to decide if we want a big social event or a real F3F competition. In Scotland most of the pilots seemed to go for a three man team option if they could choose. The Viking Race has always been a limited open event. It means that the organizer can invite as many or as few pilots they wanted. I think the people who invented F3F never thought that there would be as many as 90 pilots in one event. As this class is so dependent on the weather it is not practical to have contest with large numbers if you want to give relatively equal conditions to all pilots.
This is not new of course, we have always had problems with rising and falling wind and thermals, crosswind and other factors. The best way to deal with uneven conditions has always been to run as many rounds as possible. Until last year 10 rounds was the maximum number of rounds, now there is no limit.
In F3B there is a possibility of flying the speed in groups, but most pilots do not like this and most want to fly the speed in one group. This is also my meaning in F3F. We should try to fly the rounds in F3F in one group. But we could make some rules that would allow the organizer to use this option but the rules for this must be very clear and should only be used if absolutely necessary.
Our biggest problem today is the poor measurement of the weather conditions. We must be able to make a weather station which by itself can measure the wind conditions and determine re flights by itself. This would help the CD a lot. I also think we should reconsider the rules concerning the lowest wind speed and the most crosswind (45 degrees). It would be better that the CD could decide which wind speed and direction would be the lowest for a certain hill/slope.
The weather station should have the option for 2,3,4,5,6ms and some different crosswind possibilities that could be preset for the day. Lets face it, not all slopes gives enough lift at 3ms and 45 degrees of crosswind. So if this could be changed we would in my point of view have a much better system and a contest would be easier to handle.
I also think we should make more precise method of measuring the wind and direction. Instead of the current rule we should have an average of the flight and a green or red light if the conditions was OK or not. The pilot should also be given the right to keep the score if he wanted to.
In Scotland they shifted the start order by 10 pilots each day, not each round. Since we did not fly more than 3 days this rotation only made 3 shifts. Well this is also a way of doing it. I think we must look into another way. I can see 2 ways right now and I think both of them could be used. Organizers has to tell in advance which method.
1) Draw all the rounds. It means nobody can tamper with the start list. All rounds are drawn and handed out to each team or all the competitors in advance. This is the easiest way of doing it and probably the most justified method.
2) Draw the first round. Then fly all the following rounds after the ranking principle. Fly the last pilots first (or last in the round). With this system there will always be changes in the start order. This method requires a PC/printer at the slope (or near by) to keep the flow of the contest running. The Germans tried this in the German Open last year and it works!

et 22.9.2006

4. september 2006

Norwegian Championship, F3B

Finally home after a long drive from the east to the west of Norway. As I am the only F3B pilot in the west at the moment I had to take the trip alone. Thanks to Egil R. for letting me stay one night in his house on my way to the Championship. And also thanks to Espen G. and Lars N. for taking care of me during the Championship. This is rather important for me as I can concentrate more on the flying.
This year we started to fly Friday evening and got to fly 3 tasks.
Next day the weather was fine and we managed to fly 4 full rounds. In the beginning I did not do so well but after some flights I was back in business and to my surprise I was leading after four rounds. Not by much so the lead was fragile.
The organiser, Cirrus RCK did a good job but they had few helpers. But what a good job they did, even Lars's 12 year old daughter stayed in the B-base chair for all rounds of distance! Thanks to all the helpers, they certainly did a super job.
The forecast for Sunday was not good and indeed it started with heavy rain and low clouds. After a while the rain stopped and we all started rigging our equipment and we were more or less ready when the rain started again. They set the start to 11.30 but the rain kept coming down and then finally at 13.00 they called the Championship off for the day.
So in my 20th. F3B Championship in a row I was declared the winner. Also this meant I was qualified for the next years World Championship which will be my 11th WC in a row.
2nd. place went to Erik Morgan and third to Widar Holmedal which actually could not attend on Sunday as he got ill. I guess he was happy that the weather did not cooperate.

14. august 2006

Norwegian Championship F3F


The Norwegian Championship category F3F 2006 was held by the club Haugaland MFK north of Stavanger. The organizer had done a lot of work prior to the Championship and I felt sorry for them as the wind did not cooperate at all. Saturday looked promising but the conditions was very variable mostly because of the wrong wind direction. At least some pilots thought it was OK as they got reasonable conditions and flew well. The main problem was the fact that we only managed 4 rounds in two full days.
But worthy podium winners was Jo Grini (Crossfire), Rolf Rettedal (RaceM F3F), and Jack Farstad (RaceM F3F) all of them flew very well and took advantage of the conditions they got.
Fastest time went to Geir Njaa (RaceM F3F) with 47,52 in 4th. round.

Thanks to all the helpers who did a very solid job during the race.

This competition again showed us that we could make good use of a better weather station that could monitor the contest a little better than the manual measurement we are doing now.

Check www.f3x.no for full results

11. august 2006

Visitors



Some pictures from Hodne Friday 11.8.06
I have visitors from Skien and Tromso. They are here for the upcoming Norwegian Championship F3F this weekend. Egil got to test fly his Crossfire and Kjell Sture flew his Viking. I just took pictures....

3. august 2006

Orebro Open F3B

Wow! What a weekend for me. Second place and Speedmaster was perhaps a little more than I expected going over to Sweden and the Eurotour event (http://www.contest-modellsport.de/)
Our small team did a great job and we got good help from friends during the most difficult tasks. Erik Morgan was pretty happy with 9th. spot and I think Egil Roland was satisfied with his international debut and 22nd. place. Our team placed 5th overall and that also was quite good I think. My Speedmaster title was won win speeds of 18, 17 and 2 times 16 seconds run. We flew the last speed in reverse order and I was 4th. last to go. My first launch was bad and Erik told me so (thanks), the next launch was super and all I had to do was fly safely and I did so with a low 16 seconds speed. This put some pressure on Pasi Vaisanen, Martin Weberschock and Tobias Knoblauch. I won the last speed but Tobias beat me with the nessecary points. Anyway he deserved to win after a good contest.
I would like to thank the Swedish organisers for a well done job. I have attended this comp. for many, many years and for us living up north it is a must for us to find out where we stand
compared to the Germans, Swedes, Danes, Dutch and the Finnish guys.
And BTW, I flew my brand new RaceM F3B which I have specced for F3F this year, it means it is rather heavy but with my luck this year it did not matter. Tobias and Martin flew their new Radical's.

Heikki Astikainen, veteran F3B pilot!
Two good friends of mine, Søren Helsted launching Jan Hansen's X21 on practice day.
The A-base, at least one guy looks relaxed here!
Joakim Staal surprised me with his new model, a Crossfire. I guess there is not so much time building the Racemachine anymore.
Gjermund Westad launching Kunt Vidar's Europhia 2
Tobias Knoblauch, the winner of this years Orebro Open
The Norwegians minus Erik and me.

27. juli 2006

My new RaceM F3B

Miro brought my RaceM F3B with him from Slovakia. Finally I have two models for this season and that is good since it is now it all begins....
This one is made with balsa as sandwich and C-93 carbon. This model is mostly made for F3F as this is the main event for me this year (Viking Race in Scotland)

Roundtrip, Lysebotn

I planned a little trip to Lysebotn so Miro could get to see some of the scenery in my area. My father gave me the idea to take the ferry from Stavanger to Lysebotn and drive home. What a success! The day started with rather overcast weather but as we entered the famous Lysefjord. The ferry was more like a cruise with the captain acting as the guide. So instead of going straight to Lysebotn we took small detours all the way. Pictures will follow soon......









Lift Ticket, the Directors cut!

Check out Dave Reese's newly updated webpage and look for the new DVD Lift Ticket, the Directors cut. There is also a updated trailer of the Lift Ticket to Norway which now has a release date in December 2006. http://www.reeseproductions.com/

Quiet for a while!

Last 4 weeks have been very busy. After my two F3B trips I went to Trondheim to help Peregrine Dynamics with the Maia UAV. This is a twin electric small UAV than can be used for many purposes. There is pictures of this on www.et-air.com under the UAV section. I got to demonstrate the UAV in rather windy and turbulent conditions. Peregrine Dynamics will use this UAV for a testbed for their avionics. The Maia have an estimated endurance of 2 hours.
(I will fill in some pictures later)

Just home from Trondheim I headed to Tromsoe together with Miro for a meeting with Norut IT regarding the bigger UAV, CryoWing. http://projects.itek.norut.no/UAV/index.htm
They want to continue our cooperation and we discussed the next generation CryoWing.
Finally I got to see some of Tromsoe also. We took the gondola lift to the nearby mountain and this of course gave us a perfect view over the city. Next day our meetings continued but there was time for some more fun. Kjell Sture (AKA Speedmaster) had a new small little flying machine that needed to be tested. Maybe he will post some pictures on his blog : http://ksjohansen.blogspot.com/ Why he calls himself Speedmaster is a mystery to me :-)
Pictures will come......

1. juli 2006

Roger Waters concert!














The picture above is taken by me from a microlight aircraft and show the Hinna Park area. Viking Stadion and the training field for Viking football club can be seen on the left. Finally the club has a state of the art stadium! And they have also used the facilities to arrange concerts with some big names. Bryan Adams, REM and others have been there so far. This year they brought in Roger Waters and his band. The sound was incredible and so was the concert. I hope there will be made a DVD from this tour some day. The concert was held on Monday the 26th of June.

Fullsize airliners

They are doing an upgrade on the landing system at Sola Airport in Stavanger. This means all planes must land and takeoff on the east-west runway. This gave me good opportunity to take some nice photos from a different angle than normal. The pictures was one thing but the Vortex sound and the fact that they hit just close to where I stood was simply amazing!

Well here are the pics:

F3B again, Spydeberg Norway


After the last contest I decided to go to the F3B contest in Spydeberg at the east side of South Norway. The event is held by Cirrus RCK, Norways biggest RC-sailplane club. They have a nice field which they share with a Microlight club. They have their own little clubhouse with most facilities.
I could not bear the thought of driving again so I decided to take the train. What a boring trip! I hoped I would be able to see Norway from the rails but no! Tunnels, threes and mostly cutaway rock is what you get. At least the trip itself was pretty cheap. Luckily I had a deal with my father to travel with him back from Spydeberg in his car as he was returning from holiday.
Erik picked me up in Kongsberg and next day we went to Spydeberg to fly the Speed contest.
6 rounds with speed was excellent for me as practice. I did not do any major mistakes and won the contest with an average of 17.16. Not so good because the weather was pretty good so I guess the HotShots would have blasted through here. Well I am getting more and more happy with my RaceM F3F and in a couple of weeks I will get my F3B version.
Next day we had the normal F3B contest with all tasks. 2 rounds was all we did but that was enough for use in the National league. There are now several who are fighting for the next years World Championship. That is good! We need competition to get better here up North.
Erik won the comp. With me in second place and JoJo (The F3J guy) in third. Best distance, Erik with 25 laps and best speed, me with 16.56 seconds. Thanks to Cirrus RCK for hosting this and especially a great thanks to the Nordskogen family for being there as helpers for 2 days in a row! Without you there would not be a contest!
Check out www.f3x.no for more about the comp. Check out http://www.seaxx.net/index.html for info about Gjermund Westad's Seax.

19. juni 2006

Sailboat trip with Egil

On my way back from the F3B comp I stopped by Egil Myr (as I often do on these trips) Egil has invested in a Sweden Yachts 37. I am afraid that this is the last nail in his sailplane career.
Sunday morning he took me out and my task was to steer as he operated the sails. It was a nice feeling when we shut down the motor and went just on sails. I think it is very similar to flying model sailplanes. I could easily feel the power of the sail and adjust the rudder to get more speed. I can understand why many people like sailing! We sailed out into the main inlet to Kristiansand and got very close to the new Catamaran ferry that goes between Hanstholm and Kristiansand. Very impressive and it made big waves too!