Saturday, 25 February 2017

Destination Duxford

A great day out yesterday.

After the chaos of Storm Doris the day before, Friday dawned clear and calm.

If you've been following this blog all along then you may remember me testing out the Twister in FSX Flight Simulator about 5 years ago. See January 2012 for the post. The 'testing' was done at Duxford and now I've flown in there for real.

This was my first time landing and taking off from a hard runway with G-FUUN and I have to say it again - this is a viceless taildragger - very straight forward. Just had to be cautious of my poor turning circle when asked to backtrack on the main runway - so a swing to the left a bit before turning right was the answer. It was slightly more squirrelly on take off - yawing left and right than on grass but nothing too bad.

Some very good news - the LAA has approved the testing paperwork and has sent off to the CAA with a recommendation for a full Permit to Fly. So I've just got to be patient now and wait the 10-14 days for that to come back.

In the meantime I will use the time to perform the initial 15 hour engine maintenance.

A few of other things I forgot to say in my last post were that the cabin noise is indeed low - as I thought it was - 88db to be exact. This is a full 10db quieter than the Pipistrel and Piper I was flying before.

The other thing I did was climb up to 14,000ft - to see if it would do it first of all and then to see what kind of cruise I could get out of it at that altitude. Cruise was 106knts indicated which is about 130knts TAS - so even if I have to file IFR for the Greenland Ice Cap crossing I can do it - they give a minimum based on the QNH that day and it can be as high as FL140. I see that a guy who flew his RV8 back from the USA to the UK did a VFR crossing at 11,500ft. So that is all that is needed for terrain clearance but it would be good to have the flexibility of being able to file IFR should I need to fly above some cloud.

And finally, lately I've kept the cowl flap closed for the entire flight. Temps are well within range and even doing sustained climbs and aeros the oil does not get hotter than 95 C and is typically in the mid 80's. So the cowl flap is useful to keep the oil warm in the Winter and for high altitude cruising.

Compare the wing above to the Mk24 Spitfire here

Concorde from below

Concorde flight deck

TSR2 and Vulcan (amongst others)

Spitfire and ME109 Buchon

The seemingly-never-to-be-finished Beaufighter.

Sally B/Memphis Belle

Winter maintenance on a Mk Vb Spitfire and P-40 Tomahawk

In good company

Departing. American hanger on the wingtip.

'Testing' G-FUUN in FSX 5 years ago.

Yesterday, the real thing.

Friday, 17 February 2017

More on the Electric Twister

A good article that goes into some more detail about the electric Twister, which they are now calling the aEro.

From the text this is most interesting!

"Today, the aEro rolls at 270°/second, but an Extra-type wing is being designed to reach a roll speed of 400°/sec. Other developments include a sub-fuselage concealed pod for a thermally boosted battery charger for positioning flights."

Not sure I agree with the 270 degrees a second figure as it is more like 90 degrees a second on a standard Twister. But that new wing sounds interesting.

When aeros guru Alan Cassidy tested a Twister some years ago the only thing he found lacking was the roll rate - and suggested ditching the flaps and going for full span ailerons.

Yesterday I was doing some ballistic rolls (rolls with 0G on a parabola type curve) and found they took 4 seconds, so the 90 degrees a second figure is accurate.

Link to the full article here:

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Aeros and ASI Calibration

All is going well and I'm now getting into aerobatics which is what the Twister is designed for.

I've entered into the Club competition this year and have started to put the sequence together already. Although it is full of errors and my G-tolerance sucks at the moment. Anyway lots of time to get those things right as the comp is not until the end of May.

I expect to come last in the comp as the others all fly Extra 300 and 200 aircraft - which is a bit ridiculous as this is supposed to be for newcomers to the sport. Anyway it is a good disciplined way to get better at aeros rather than just going up and mucking about.

A short video of some aeros here (with a little cloud play at the end):

I also did a calibration of the ASI's to see how accurate they were. See the results below. I probably did not fly such an accurate sequence here as the altitude varied and the day was not exactly calm. Even so in the mid speed range it is quite accurate. The Dynon and Winter both agree with each other to within a knot most of the time - until either extreme of the speed range when they get about 3 knots out.