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Thursday, September 26, 2013

New maiden of the Pike Electro

Sorry for not updating you earlier regarding the Pike Electro but I have been very busy last days. Let's come back to the second Maiden flight with the new combo made of a Sloperacer modified Leopard 2860/2730Kv and 5:1 Reisenauer Micro Edition gear box with high torque pinion, an YGE 90 LV controller, and a 17x11 propeller. The Leopard motor is initially an inrunner for boat (!). The motors are 4 pole designs, 12 slot rotors, hand wound with high quality double bearings and rated up to 1300w. With a 3s battery, it can deliver around 800w of power. To be safe, I did this flight at the slope. Everything went well except that I wrongly configured the motor switch command so I didn't have brake (shame on me !!!). This is at the slope that I did the following video. One week later has been the big day, as I was awaited to do some demo at the Icarus Cup all over the week-end. I did 7 demo flights, and I can tell that I was gaining confidence after each flight considering how well the combo was performing. I was able to do almost vertical climbing, could let the motor ON and do laps at very high speed and low altitude, do some aerobatics using sometimes the motor for vertical manoeuvers. Duration of each flight was around 4 minutes, and was consumming between 1 and 1.2 A from the 1.9A battery. For info, I used a rubber O-Ring on the propeller to ease the folding. It works great. In conclusion, I'm very satisfied by this combo, and I really recommend it to everyone who wants a slim motor to install in the nose of a F3B/F glider type.

Pike Precision Electro from Pierre Rondel on Vimeo.

Icarus Cup 2013, 40th anniversary

This is the biggest paragliding/hangliding meeting in europe but aside, there are plenty of other exhibition, including a big aeromodelling show. During 2 days, we coudl see everything flying like aerobatics, 3D helicopters, synchronized aerobatics with airplanes and helicopters, patrols, warbirds, electro gliders, foamies, skymen, pylon racing and even more. This year we have been lucky with the weather, and had lot of spectators during the 2 days. Overall the 40th Icarus cup is a really big sucess, and I really took lot's of pleasure to be part of this aeromodelling show with my clubmates. Here is the photo album I took during the 2 days.

A nice video

Stéphane, from Toulouse, sent me this nice video filmed in the pyrénées with beautiful landscapes at Pic Du Céciré. Stéphane flies a Snowflak, his own creation, an home made aerobatic glider inspired by the Lunak, with a very nice decoration.

Little SnowflaK In Big Mountain from pgts on Vimeo.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Breaking News !

France won the 2013 F3F European Championship in both team and individual ranking. Frederic Hours is the new European champion. The team composed of Frederic Hours, Sébastien Lanes, Andreas Fricke and Laurent Lombardo (TM) won the team title by a margin of 500 pts over the second team, Slovakia.

Congratulations to the team France. This is a great achievement !

Friday, September 13, 2013

Pike Electro, ready for the second maiden flight

After changing the motor by the SlopeRacer motor (Modified Leopard 2860/2730Kv and 5:1 Reisenauer Micro Edition gear box with high torque pinion) and the ESG by a YGE 90 LV, my Pike is ready for maiden for tomorrow. Flying weight is 2kg581. I hope I will be able to film a bit. The propeller is a 17x11 instead of a shor 14x9 with the Kontronik motor I had. The YGE has a nice feature that allows to connect in parallel the BEC and an extra receiver batterie on the receiver, doing the perfect redundancy, at the condition the receiver battery if almost full before the flight to avoid to the YGE ESC to spend its time to recharge the receiver battery. No need of the optocoupler cable. 

Stay tuned !

Video: European Gliding Championships 2013

I found the following video about the last European Gliding Championships in Vinon-sur-Verdon (South of France). It is not RC, but the video is superb with awasome slow motion sequences.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

European F3F Championship

This week is the European F3F Championship in Slovakia, on the slopes of the sky ressort of Donovaly. You can follow the competition on the organiser website http://donovaly2013.f3f.sk/, and the french team's blog located here:  http://f3fteamfrance.blogspot.fr/

Cette semaine se tient le premier championnat d'Europe de F3F en Slovaquie, sur les pentes de la station de sky de Donovaly. Vous pouvez suivre la competition sur le site de l'organisateur, mais aussi le parcours de l'équipe de France sur le blog de l'équipe

Monday, September 9, 2013

Col du Glandon

Last week-end was the F3F contest of le Col du Glandon. For people who don't know, this is the place were the french F3F was born in 1994. The particularity of these slopes is that there are at 2000m and are facing 2 valleys. They provide smooth and homogeneous flying conditions thanks to the breeze. The down side is that they are capricious and the probability to fly is lower than elsewhere because of the specificity of the moutain climat. This week-end the weather forecast was very bad anouncing rain and storm. However, the different forecasts were predicting a possible weather window in the middle of the day for both Saturday and Sunday, therefore we couldn't cancel the competition without trying.

Saturday, we arrived at the slope around 12am and installed the equipement. We started to fly in a light breeze between 3 and 5 m/s, creating a light lift. We managed 4 rounds before the wind die. We waited a bit, doing some free flying, before to go down.

Sunday the appointment was 1 hour earlier. Despite it rained all night, the sky cleared a little when we reached the car park, but no or very little air, but in the wrong direction. Later, we felt some air coming from the valley, on the south slope, so moved to the other car park, and walk to the slope. The time to install the bases and timing system, the breeze start to blow around 5 to 7 m/s. We knew that the flying window would be short, so we started rounds quickly, and flew 4 new rounds. Then, we had  some rain drops, but the sky was becoming dark and we could see the low clouds trying to go over the summits in front of us. We decided to stop there with 8 rounds in the pocket which is not that bad for such crappy weather. On the ranking side, Matthieu Mervelet, after a shy start on saturday, used the turbo to win the competition. I finished second very close to him, and Yves Tirand third, even closer to me. Thomas who was leading on saturday took 4th place followed by Joël Marin in 5th position.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

F3B in Teillé

Pascal Tournache visited the aeromodelling field of Teillé (near Nantes) and had the chance to watch an F3B contest there. A good opportunity to discover this category, very far from big scale gliders he is used to pilot. Below is the photo report he did during that day.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

2013 French F3F Championship

What a F3F championship !

Last week end was the 2013 F3F National Championship over 3 days. 23 pilots were qualified for it. Location was one of the 2 superb slopes of the south Vercors, with the cliffs of Fond D'urles in case of south wind, and the deep slope of le Col de Menée in case of north wind. Weather forecasts decided to give 3 days of North wind.
The slope is the ideal slope every F3F pilot dreams about. But there is a "but", you must deserve it with a 45 minutes walk and climb 200m of altitude during 1.5 km, from the car park. And we did this 3 days in a row !

On Friday, after reaching the slope around midday, conditions were very very light. After a first juge briefing with the CD, then a competitor briefing, we started the championship with a round zero allowing the pilots to discover the slope. Immediatly after, we started round 1. Until 5:30 we managed 4 rounds, in a light but straight wind. Everybody was flying with no ballast in order to fly at the edge and be able to do tight turns and stay in the lift at the edge. At the end of the day, I was leading the comp after winning 3 of the four rounds. Best time was abround 46 seconds.

Saturday, we arrived on the slope earlier, but had to wait a bit for the low clouds to clear. I think we started to fly around 10:30. We did 11 rounds during the day, with growing conditions, especially from the middle of the afternoon, therefore pilots start to use ballast gradually. At the top we could see alternatively Matthieu Mervelet, Allan Cohen or Frederic Hours or myself winning the rounds, but at the end of the day, Matthieu approached the lead with a nice 36s after I did a big cut at the left turn and finish with a 41s. Matthieu did it again in the 15th round with a 37s took the lead of the comp.

Initially Sunday was supposed to be the best day, with stronger wind and sun, but when we arrived on the slope we were standing in the cloud. We waited again until the cloud level increased. But round 16 was stopped then cancelled after 30 minutes with 10 pilots remaining. Bad news for me as I had the best time. We had to wait again until this time the cloud level was high enough to resume the competition. We restarted with round 16, and this time, after an excellent gain of altitude, I managed to do the fastest time of the competition, and of the slope, but more importantly retrieving the lead before the last round. For this last round everything could happen for the top position, but also for the 3rd place on the podium as Allan Cohen, Arnaud Krebs and Philippe Lanes were on the starting blocks to dislodge Frederic Hours of the 3rd place. It was a matter of 1/10 of seconds.Allan flew first with a 37s setting the objective for most of us. I was flying in the first 1/3rd of the pilot and did a nice 36s, anticipating at the limit all turns, taking the risk to cut. Arnaud was flying right after me and did a 42s. Later Matthieu did a 39s, which means I was champion !. Philippe did also a 36s, but this was not sufficient to jump in the ranking. Fred was the very last pilot to fly in this championship. He flew very aggressively his FS3 and obtained a 37s like Allan. But with the game of the jokers (2 jokers over 17 rounds), Frederic finally stayed at the 3rd place.

Overall it was an exceptionnal championship for many reasons: First of all the organisation whi splitted the CD responsability (Yves as contest director, with the help of Thomas Delarbre) and the logistics (Paul and Etienne and Gracinda) with the BBQ, the banquet, the price giving, without forgetting the admin part. This made the contest much smoother, with no stress on the organisation side. I think this has been much appreciated by the competitors.
I really want to say a warm thank you to the organisation including the base A and B plus safety line judges. You did a wonderfull and accurate job guys !
Then the slope made this championship special as the thermal activity was very low, flights were very equal. Finally the level of piloting was impressive. 10 pilots could reasonnably win this championship. So the battle has been very intense, therefore the victory is even more enjoyable !

Below is the evolutive ranking with also the list of the planes used:

Below is a video that Stéphane Ricobonno provided me. It is filmed from base A with a go pro, and gives a nice perspective on the slope.

Some more photo albums here:

F3G and F3B in Kulmbach / Germany, a tradition continues!

From May 10th to May 12th, 2024, the Kulmbach model aircraft association organized a combined competition on its own model aircraft site nea...