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Wanting to start a new glider club



 
 
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  #1  
Old April 23rd 18, 09:56 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
John Foster
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Posts: 149
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

Hi everyone

I just started glider flying lessons and I'M HOOKED!!! Unfortunately, the closest glider club is 3:45 hr drive away. I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring, with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least 85 miles, and possibly longer. We have an airport close by with a 4800' runway, about 2-3 miles west of the mountains.. A friend is a CFI and A&P, and is interested in getting his "glider ticket" as well. There are a few other folks in the area that have expressed varying interest in flying gliders as well. But as it currently stands, no one (except one possible individual that I haven't yet talked to) in the area actually flies gliders. My friend and I have talked about the possibility of starting a local club. What would be the best way to go about doing this?
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  #2  
Old April 23rd 18, 10:06 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Dave Nadler
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Posts: 1,344
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 4:56:24 PM UTC-4, John Foster wrote:
...I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring,
with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least 85 miles


Where are you?
  #3  
Old April 23rd 18, 11:03 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
John Foster
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Posts: 149
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 3:06:32 PM UTC-6, Dave Nadler wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 4:56:24 PM UTC-4, John Foster wrote:
...I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring,
with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least 85 miles


Where are you?


Ronan, MT. About 1hr north of Missoula.
  #4  
Old April 24th 18, 01:26 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
2G
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Posts: 527
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 1:56:24 PM UTC-7, John Foster wrote:
Hi everyone

I just started glider flying lessons and I'M HOOKED!!! Unfortunately, the closest glider club is 3:45 hr drive away. I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring, with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least 85 miles, and possibly longer. We have an airport close by with a 4800' runway, about 2-3 miles west of the mountains. A friend is a CFI and A&P, and is interested in getting his "#1glider ticket" as well. There are a few other folks in the area that have expressed varying interest in flying gliders as well. But as it currently stands, no one (except one possible individual that I haven't yet talked to) in the area actually flies gliders. My friend and I have talked about the possibility of starting a local club. What would be the best way to go about doing this?


Your #1 issue is finding a CFIG in your area, which you can use the FAA airmen search feature to find.
#2 you are going to need a glider (DUH!).
#3 you will need tow pilots who are CURRENT to tow, or can get current.
#4 you will need a tow plane, which is a subject all onto itself.
#5 you will need to incorporate to limit liability.

These are not insignificant issues, but clubs have overcome them. Sometimes there are suitable aircraft locally, such as a Super Cub, that can be used for towing (given a supportive owner). The glider must be a two-place so you can give instruction, and if you operate commercially it must be certificated.

Tom
  #5  
Old April 24th 18, 01:32 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
3j
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 12
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

At 22:03 23 April 2018, John Foster wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 3:06:32 PM UTC-6, Dave Nadler

wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 4:56:24 PM UTC-4, John Foster

wrote:
...I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge

soaring,
with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least

85
miles

Where are you?


Ronan, MT. About 1hr north of Missoula.

I have made many flights up and down the Mission Range. I have
reached the Missions from both Thompson Falls and St. Ignatius.
& traveled well into the Glacier National Park. Nice place to fly

  #6  
Old April 24th 18, 02:39 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
son_of_flubber
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Posts: 1,418
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

You could form a syndicate and buy a self-launching glider.



  #7  
Old April 24th 18, 05:30 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
John Foster
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 149
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 6:26:55 PM UTC-6, 2G wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 1:56:24 PM UTC-7, John Foster wrote:
Hi everyone

I just started glider flying lessons and I'M HOOKED!!! Unfortunately, the closest glider club is 3:45 hr drive away. I also live in an area that looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring, with a range of mountains facing the west that runs for at least 85 miles, and possibly longer. We have an airport close by with a 4800' runway, about 2-3 miles west of the mountains. A friend is a CFI and A&P, and is interested in getting his "#1glider ticket" as well. There are a few other folks in the area that have expressed varying interest in flying gliders as well. But as it currently stands, no one (except one possible individual that I haven't yet talked to) in the area actually flies gliders. My friend and I have talked about the possibility of starting a local club. What would be the best way to go about doing this?


Your #1 issue is finding a CFIG in your area, which you can use the FAA airmen search feature to find.


Yes. I agree. Good thing is my friend who is the A&P, is also a CFI, who is interested in getting his CFIG.

#2 you are going to need a glider (DUH!).


Will need money for this. What I struggle with is what to start with and when to pull the trigger on getting a club glider. I would expect this would be the last piece to put in place before actively recruiting club members, as the glider would have to be bought with club money, which would be raised through initiation fees and annual dues. However, in order to have enough money to buy a decent glider (2-33 in good shape, or a more expensive G 103), one would need a critical mass/number of members who are willing to fork out for the glider. Less members = higher buy-in; more members = harder to get interest until people see gliders actually flying around the area. What would be an acceptable initiation fee/club dues?


#3 you will need tow pilots who are CURRENT to tow, or can get current.


My friend who is the A&P and CFI also has a Cessna 180 that he is planning to attach a tow hook to. He is planning to get his glider rating, as well as training/experience at towing. There is also another Super Cub in the area, but I haven't approached the owner yet to gauge interest in using it for towing. It's a possibility though.

#4 you will need a tow plane, which is a subject all onto itself.


see above

#5 you will need to incorporate to limit liability.


That is doable.

These are not insignificant issues, but clubs have overcome them. Sometimes there are suitable aircraft locally, such as a Super Cub, that can be used for towing (given a supportive owner). The glider must be a two-place so you can give instruction, and if you operate commercially it must be certificated.

Tom


An idea that has floated to the surface is once we have everything in place and are flying, to invite a reporter from a local news station to come for a ride and explain what we are trying to do. I would expect that the flying would be good enough here locally that we could easily draw from both Missoula and Kalispell, in between, and even from the greater NW Rocky Mountain region. It will take a bit of work, I expect, though. I would like to eventually get a winch operational here as well, to further help make flights more affordable. Yes, I'm aware good winches are incredibly expensive, so that will likely need to be a project for once things are well on their way, but it's nice to have big dreams, right?

Again, where I see one of the biggest challenges facing new clubs is the glider. Serviceable 2-seater gliders that aren't beat up, low performing 2-33s, that people are going to be excited to fly, are prohibitively expensive, unless a club has many members and is well-established. But you can't get to that point without a glider. I wish some glider manufacturer would build a reasonably well-performing glider new for an affordable amount (whatever that would be defined as), but at least a lot less than $75,000 for a used/rebuilt 2-33 or a ASK-21.
  #8  
Old April 24th 18, 06:23 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Tim Taylor
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 669
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

Right now the best glider for most starting clubs are the Grob. The Blanik L23 is an other option. The L13 filled that gap for many years, but now most are stored. The club just to the south of you near Hamilton has a L13 being refurbished right now. Hopefully you are in contact with them.

A winch would be a good option for launching, especially if you have a ridge nearby that can be reached off a winch launch.

  #9  
Old April 24th 18, 06:26 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Paul T[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 195
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

At 04:30 24 April 2018, John Foster wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 6:26:55 PM UTC-6, 2G wrote:
On Monday, April 23, 2018 at 1:56:24 PM UTC-7, John Foster

wrote:
Hi everyone
=20
I just started glider flying lessons and I'M HOOKED!!!

Unfortunately,
=
the closest glider club is 3:45 hr drive away. I also live in an area
that=
looks to me to be perfect for ridge soaring, with a range of

mountains
fac=
ing the west that runs for at least 85 miles, and possibly longer.

We
have=
an airport close by with a 4800' runway, about 2-3 miles west of

the
mount=
ains. A friend is a CFI and A&P, and is interested in getting his
"#1glide=
r ticket" as well. There are a few other folks in the area that have
expre=
ssed varying interest in flying gliders as well. But as it currently
stand=
s, no one (except one possible individual that I haven't yet talked

to) in
=
the area actually flies gliders. My friend and I have talked about

the
pos=
sibility of starting a local club. What would be the best way to go

about
=
doing this?
=20
Your #1 issue is finding a CFIG in your area, which you can use

the FAA
a=
irmen search feature to find.

Yes. I agree. Good thing is my friend who is the A&P, is also a

CFI, who
=
is interested in getting his CFIG.

#2 you are going to need a glider (DUH!).


Will need money for this. What I struggle with is what to start

with and
w=
hen to pull the trigger on getting a club glider. I would expect this
woul=
d be the last piece to put in place before actively recruiting club
members=
, as the glider would have to be bought with club money, which

would be
rai=
sed through initiation fees and annual dues. However, in order to

have
eno=
ugh money to buy a decent glider (2-33 in good shape, or a more

expensive
G=
103), one would need a critical mass/number of members who are

willing to
=
fork out for the glider. Less members =3D higher buy-in; more

members =3D
=
harder to get interest until people see gliders actually flying around

the
=
area. What would be an acceptable initiation fee/club dues?


#3 you will need tow pilots who are CURRENT to tow, or can get

current.

My friend who is the A&P and CFI also has a Cessna 180 that he is

planning
=
to attach a tow hook to. He is planning to get his glider rating, as

well
=
as training/experience at towing. There is also another Super Cub

in the
a=
rea, but I haven't approached the owner yet to gauge interest in

using it
f=
or towing. It's a possibility though.

#4 you will need a tow plane, which is a subject all onto itself.


see above

#5 you will need to incorporate to limit liability.


That is doable.
=20
These are not insignificant issues, but clubs have overcome

them.
Sometim=
es there are suitable aircraft locally, such as a Super Cub, that can

be
us=
ed for towing (given a supportive owner). The glider must be a

two-place
so=
you can give instruction, and if you operate commercially it must

be
certi=
ficated.
=20
Tom


An idea that has floated to the surface is once we have everything

in
place=
and are flying, to invite a reporter from a local news station to

come
for=
a ride and explain what we are trying to do. I would expect that

the
flyi=
ng would be good enough here locally that we could easily draw

from both
Mi=
ssoula and Kalispell, in between, and even from the greater NW

Rocky
Mounta=
in region. It will take a bit of work, I expect, though. I would like

to
=
eventually get a winch operational here as well, to further help

make
fligh=
ts more affordable. Yes, I'm aware good winches are incredibly

expensive,
=
so that will likely need to be a project for once things are well on

their
=
way, but it's nice to have big dreams, right?

Again, where I see one of the biggest challenges facing new clubs

is the
gl=
ider. Serviceable 2-seater gliders that aren't beat up, low

performing
2-3=
3s, that people are going to be excited to fly, are prohibitively
expensive=
, unless a club has many members and is well-established. But

you can't
ge=
t to that point without a glider. I wish some glider manufacturer

would
bu=
ild a reasonably well-performing glider new for an affordable

amount
(whate=
ver that would be defined as), but at least a lot less than $75,000

for a
u=
sed/rebuilt 2-33 or a ASK-21.


There used to be a gliding operation in Kallispell many years ago -
so maybe some 'old glider pilots' around - of course further up the
valley, you have possibly the best soaring in Canada at Invermere.



  #10  
Old April 24th 18, 07:29 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Surge
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 133
Default Wanting to start a new glider club

If it were up to me I'd consider winch launching seeing as those mountains are very conveniently located.

Some advantages of a winch operation:
1. I would think that a second hand winch would be much cheaper to purchase than a type certified, tug aircraft. You don't need the latest SkyLaunch system to get gliders airborne.
2. Operational expenses of a winch are typically a fraction of those of a type certified aircraft. No annual inspections, no mandatory expensive overhaul schedules, much lower fuel consumption per launch, etc. A tug costs money to maintain even if it sits in a hangar doing nothing over winter.
3. You don't require a pilot with a tug rating. Sourcing and retaining tug rated pilots appears to be a problem for a number of soaring operations around the world.

I'm sure Bruno from Utah Soaring Association (Nephi) would be able to point you in the right direction if you are interested in setting up a winch launching operation. https://sites.google.com/site/nephisoaring/about-us
 




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