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soaring into the future



 
 
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  #1  
Old December 25th 07, 10:11 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Brad[_2_]
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Posts: 722
Default soaring into the future

I was browsing thru one of the Yahoo glider N.G.'s today and read
where the World Class design may get ressurected. That got me to
thinking:

What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like? I imagine it won't look much different from what we are
seeing now in terms of slender body shapes with sexy wingtip
treatments. And with the price of carbon fiber coming down, the
expanding growth of the composites industry and the rising use and
availability of CNC machining, it seems that there might be a niche
market for a good performing, lightweight sailplane that could be
tailored for the recreational market.

Would it make sense to put a 2 stroke motor in it for self launch? Or
maybe look at the ever expanding world of electric motors and
batteries? Right now there is an electric motor that weighs 4.5 pounds
and puts out close to 20HP! I've seen it, in fact I have held it in my
hands..........it is amazing. It seems that 2-strokes could easily
start being banned for noise, pollution and for just not being green
enough. So perhaps electric would be the logical and environmentally
"correct" way to go. The non-flying public I think will start looking
very critically at some point in the future at sports and other
"hobby" uses of fuel and pollution sources: we should be ready for
that if and when it happens, since right or
wrong.............perception is a key driver in formulating public
opinion.

Or maybe forget self-launching and consider winch, auto or bungee
launch. All these methods have and are being used successfully now,
but here in the US the Aero Tow still is the preferred way to get
airborn. However with rising fuel prices I really feel that at some
point a lot of us won't be able to cover the expense of an aero tow.
The infrastructure must be strongly considered for these "alternative"
launch methods, but I believe these are not insurmountable
obstacles.........we need to be ready when the real need arises.

Perhaps a combination of auto tow and a "sustainer" electric motor
might work; where the auto tow gets you airborn and then the electric
motor get's you up to the lift, and then home again if you need it.

Sure, there are a ton of sailplanes out there right now. And the
Russia, Apis, Silent, Sparrowhawk and probably several more would be
suitable for filling this niche. But if there is going to be a push to
create a new "World Class" design, maybe instead of just making it a
shortwinger and that's it, consider the whole package of what it takes
to operate and enjoy flying a sailpane, and how we could generate
excitement in our sport and see the ranks of glider pilots expand.

My personal choice would be a ship that utilizes the right materials
for the right areas; make it strong and light. Design a cockpit like
the Apis; roomy and comfortable. Utilize simple and functional design
methods that leverages on AC-4 and Apis manufacturing techniques. Use
full span flaperons and upper Schempp-Hirth airbrakes. Overlapping
spars that use 2 main wing pins and fore and aft lift pin/tube
treatments. Simple automatic control hookups like DG uses. The list
goes on........

I would write more...................but the Christmas Ham is almost
done and dinner is near.

Merry Christmas!
Brad
199AK

Ads
  #2  
Old December 25th 07, 11:16 PM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Ian
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 306
Default soaring into the future

On 25 Dec, 21:11, Brad wrote:

What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like?


My guess is that things will continue much as they a ever more
sophisticated and beautiful aircraft, ever fewer pilots flying them.
Gliding - in the UK anyway - will continue its inexorable progress
from one of the cheapest air sports to one of the more expensive.

It would be nice if modern design and construction techniques could
trickle down to give us low priced gliders of moderate performance ...
but the abject failure of the PW-5 and world class suggests that this
isn't a commercially viable hope.

Ian
  #3  
Old December 26th 07, 12:05 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Newill\ \Mario Lazaga\
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Posts: 2
Default soaring into the future

On Dec 25, 4:11*pm, Brad wrote:
I was browsing thru one of the Yahoo glider N.G.'s today and read
where the World Class design may get ressurected. That got me to
thinking:

What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like? I


I think this is an excellent subject for discussion - with SSA at 75
years - what will soaring look like in 25 years?

My own contribution - and commenting on another persons post as well -
perhaps we go the way of skiing? Snowboards changed the age and number
of players on the slopes - so I think we need something that is the
"snowboard" of soaring-

How about a trainer that cannot go higher than 4 - 6 - 8 - 10 feet? if
one had a way to have a primary glider - with self launch capability
[ or tow down the wire with a winch?] and it could not go high enought
to cause great damage on rough landings - then maybe the teens could
teach themselves along side the runway while the big ships launch -
and then play on the runway ( yeah, I know that won't work at some
sites ) and "hop" into the air ten or twenty times in 30 minutes to
get the idea of basic controls and landing understood. The craft would
be something any club could assemble, not registered, and repaired by
anyone on the field with foam and (epoxy - duct tape - bolts and
clamps??) I have sketched up some ideas along these lines -

Another thought would be a super low cost simulator - projectors
costing ~ $500 today combined with software that connects to a stick
and rudder pedals and runs on a used computer could let the students
fly each part of the mission many times before getting into the air.
At the Memphis convention, one group reported that such a simulator
took a non-pilot to the point they were ready to fly with only five
flights in an ASK-21 !!! (They did go for a few more circuts before
solo - but all IP's on the field felt the student was completely
ready.) Anything that gets the student to solo in less time is the
right answer.

Finally, watch out for the "Chinese" and similar low labor cost sites
getting into the general aviation business. Once an India or China
decides that soaring and gliding are fun - beneficial to the
generation of new needed pilots - and sellable on the open market -
the europeans are going to need to focus on only the highest
performance and most costly machines.

Over to the next writer!
DBN
  #4  
Old December 26th 07, 12:39 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
[email protected]
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Posts: 27
Default soaring into the future


The ideal recreational next generation sailplane?

Gliders that are self-launch and jet-powered.

Raul Boerner
DM
LS6-b
  #5  
Old December 26th 07, 12:54 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Bill Daniels
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Posts: 687
Default soaring into the future

I'll vote for the use of simulators in training. There are sites using this
approach now and reporting good results.

Many students have fears about training maneuvers but they rarely tell their
instructors. Offering a syllibus where you teach each maneuver on a
simulator before performing it in the air removes this fear - and speeds
progress. I think this could reduce the many student dropouts. It also has
the benefit of keeping students and instructors busy in wintertime.

No simulator is a total and complete replacement for in-flight instruction
but they can be used to advantage.

Bill Daniels



"Newill" "Mario Lazaga"" wrote in message
...
On Dec 25, 4:11 pm, Brad wrote:
I was browsing thru one of the Yahoo glider N.G.'s today and read
where the World Class design may get ressurected. That got me to
thinking:

What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like? I


I think this is an excellent subject for discussion - with SSA at 75
years - what will soaring look like in 25 years?

My own contribution - and commenting on another persons post as well -
perhaps we go the way of skiing? Snowboards changed the age and number
of players on the slopes - so I think we need something that is the
"snowboard" of soaring-

How about a trainer that cannot go higher than 4 - 6 - 8 - 10 feet? if
one had a way to have a primary glider - with self launch capability
[ or tow down the wire with a winch?] and it could not go high enought
to cause great damage on rough landings - then maybe the teens could
teach themselves along side the runway while the big ships launch -
and then play on the runway ( yeah, I know that won't work at some
sites ) and "hop" into the air ten or twenty times in 30 minutes to
get the idea of basic controls and landing understood. The craft would
be something any club could assemble, not registered, and repaired by
anyone on the field with foam and (epoxy - duct tape - bolts and
clamps??) I have sketched up some ideas along these lines -

Another thought would be a super low cost simulator - projectors
costing ~ $500 today combined with software that connects to a stick
and rudder pedals and runs on a used computer could let the students
fly each part of the mission many times before getting into the air.
At the Memphis convention, one group reported that such a simulator
took a non-pilot to the point they were ready to fly with only five
flights in an ASK-21 !!! (They did go for a few more circuts before
solo - but all IP's on the field felt the student was completely
ready.) Anything that gets the student to solo in less time is the
right answer.

Finally, watch out for the "Chinese" and similar low labor cost sites
getting into the general aviation business. Once an India or China
decides that soaring and gliding are fun - beneficial to the
generation of new needed pilots - and sellable on the open market -
the europeans are going to need to focus on only the highest
performance and most costly machines.

Over to the next writer!
DBN


  #6  
Old December 26th 07, 02:31 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Frank Whiteley
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2,043
Default soaring into the future

On Dec 25, 5:54 pm, "Bill Daniels" [email protected] wrote:
I'll vote for the use of simulators in training. There are sites using this
approach now and reporting good results.

Many students have fears about training maneuvers but they rarely tell their
instructors. Offering a syllibus where you teach each maneuver on a
simulator before performing it in the air removes this fear - and speeds
progress. I think this could reduce the many student dropouts. It also has
the benefit of keeping students and instructors busy in wintertime.

No simulator is a total and complete replacement for in-flight instruction
but they can be used to advantage.

Bill Daniels

"Newill" "Mario Lazaga"" wrote in ...
On Dec 25, 4:11 pm, Brad wrote:

I was browsing thru one of the Yahoo glider N.G.'s today and read
where the World Class design may get ressurected. That got me to
thinking:


What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like? I


I think this is an excellent subject for discussion - with SSA at 75
years - what will soaring look like in 25 years?

My own contribution - and commenting on another persons post as well -
perhaps we go the way of skiing? Snowboards changed the age and number
of players on the slopes - so I think we need something that is the
"snowboard" of soaring-

How about a trainer that cannot go higher than 4 - 6 - 8 - 10 feet? if
one had a way to have a primary glider - with self launch capability
[ or tow down the wire with a winch?] and it could not go high enought
to cause great damage on rough landings - then maybe the teens could
teach themselves along side the runway while the big ships launch -
and then play on the runway ( yeah, I know that won't work at some
sites ) and "hop" into the air ten or twenty times in 30 minutes to
get the idea of basic controls and landing understood. The craft would
be something any club could assemble, not registered, and repaired by
anyone on the field with foam and (epoxy - duct tape - bolts and
clamps??) I have sketched up some ideas along these lines -

Another thought would be a super low cost simulator - projectors
costing ~ $500 today combined with software that connects to a stick
and rudder pedals and runs on a used computer could let the students
fly each part of the mission many times before getting into the air.
At the Memphis convention, one group reported that such a simulator
took a non-pilot to the point they were ready to fly with only five
flights in an ASK-21 !!! (They did go for a few more circuts before
solo - but all IP's on the field felt the student was completely
ready.) Anything that gets the student to solo in less time is the
right answer.

Finally, watch out for the "Chinese" and similar low labor cost sites
getting into the general aviation business. Once an India or China
decides that soaring and gliding are fun - beneficial to the
generation of new needed pilots - and sellable on the open market -
the europeans are going to need to focus on only the highest
performance and most costly machines.

Over to the next writer!
DBN


Simulators have some impact. Bill has used Condor as an effective
white board. YSA's was to move students ahead about six flights in
learning, not necessarily to solo earlier. Paul Moggach will have to
comment on whether they have achieved that. Their simulator budget
was a donated $25,000 for their Mk IV iteration as show on their web
site. I think the Mk I was at the convention. It was also used to
demonstarate instructor methods and outreach.

http://www.yorksoaring.com/FlightSimulator/ includes a short video.
Larger projection screens are now readily available.

Frank Whiteley
  #7  
Old December 26th 07, 02:58 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Shawn[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 19
Default soaring into the future

Brad wrote:
I was browsing thru one of the Yahoo glider N.G.'s today and read
where the World Class design may get ressurected. That got me to
thinking:

What would the ideal recreational next generation sailplane sailplane
look like? I imagine it won't look much different from what we are
seeing now in terms of slender body shapes with sexy wingtip
treatments. And with the price of carbon fiber coming down, the
expanding growth of the composites industry and the rising use and
availability of CNC machining, it seems that there might be a niche
market for a good performing, lightweight sailplane that could be
tailored for the recreational market.


This subject has beaten the dead horse into dog food and baseballs by
now. More Purina than home runs I'm afraid ;-)
Nevertheless...
....We know what *shape* we want, that's pretty easy. What ever *It* is,
it should be shaped similarly to a Discus, LS-8, ASW-24 etc. Some solid
handling, 15 m span, flapless (I like flaps, but a volksglider should be
flapless IMHO), retractable gear, known quantity.
What would make such a beast unique, and affordable, is the way that
shape gets produced.
I suspect the prepreg technique used in the Sparrowhawk is in the right
direction. Farm out fabric cutting to someone who could laser cut many
ships worth of cloth when the price is low? Also, with all the wind
farms going up around the world, the technology involved in
manufacturing big composite wings should be improving rapidly. Perhaps
wings with a significant portion of constant cord/profile (half span?)
with a mass produced, extruded spar that is cut into a segment for each
wing (diverges from the Discus-esque shape but at what performance
cost?) could simplify production.
Posters here have said that a significant amount of the labor that goes
into the manufacture of gliders is in the sanding and polishing to get a
glassy smooth surface. On behalf of all the pilots who've happily flown
30 year old gliders with crappy finishes "Who cares?". If I could get
a solid performing glider with a dull white finish at 2/3 the price,
that's fine with me. Perhaps some decrease in surface waviness is
realized in the process, but modern gliders shrink significantly over
the first few years anyway, negating some of the benefit, so why pay for
sanding twice?

My $ 0.02 (On sale half price tomorrow only!)


Shawn


P.S. Sorry that this is so disjointed, dinner's ready :-)
  #8  
Old December 26th 07, 04:28 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Brad[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 722
Default soaring into the future

Hi Shawn,

Here are some replies to your excellent post:

This subject has beaten the dead horse into dog food and baseballs by
now. *More Purina than home runs I'm afraid ;-)
Nevertheless...


Agree..................but the more water that goes over a ducks back,
eventually some water soaks in................I hope the same can be
said here, in a metaphorical sense.........


...We know what *shape* we want, that's pretty easy. *What ever *It* is,
it should be shaped similarly to a Discus, LS-8, ASW-24 etc.


Working on the shapes now, that's pretty easy with modern CAD
programs.

15 m span,


Agree completely, maybe even leave room for a 17m extension at the
tip.

flapless (I like flaps, but a volksglider should be
flapless IMHO),


Flaps would be easy enough to do, I think, but I would not rule out
your suggestion either, after all, it is a Volksglider.

retractable gear, known quantity.


Agree.

What would make such a beast unique, and affordable, is the way that
shape gets produced.


Have that covered


I suspect the prepreg technique used in the Sparrowhawk is in the right
direction. *


Here is disagree. Greg is fortunate to have use of the huge autoclave
at the Lancair/Columbia factory, I think.
Although Out of Autoclave could be done with the right tooling and
materials. But I think wet layup and vacuum bagging would be cheaper.


Farm out fabric cutting to someone who could laser cut many
ships worth of cloth when the price is low?


Good idea............I would guess that this would depend on the
number of ships to be produced.


*Also, with all the wind
farms going up around the world, the technology involved in
manufacturing big composite wings should be improving rapidly. *Perhaps
wings with a significant portion of constant cord/profile (half span?)
with a mass produced, extruded spar that is cut into a segment for each
wing (diverges from the Discus-esque shape but at what performance
cost?) could simplify production.


I would make a wing with an LS-3 planform. Carbon/H-60 foam core.
Graphlite spar caps.

Posters here have said that a significant amount of the labor that goes
into the manufacture of gliders is in the sanding and polishing to get a
glassy smooth surface. *On behalf of all the pilots who've happily flown
30 year old gliders with crappy finishes *"Who cares?". *If I could get
a solid performing glider with a dull white finish at 2/3 the price,
that's fine with me. *Perhaps some decrease in surface waviness is
realized in the process, but modern gliders shrink significantly over
the first few years anyway, negating some of the benefit, so why pay for
sanding twice?


Agree................throw a sandable primer coat into the molds and
have the buyer do the finishing to their standards/needs/requirements.

My $ 0.02 (On sale half price tomorrow only!)


Thanks!

Brad


P.S. *Sorry that this is so disjointed, dinner's ready *:-)


mines on hold................had to take a dog to the vets............:
(

  #9  
Old December 26th 07, 06:24 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Shawn[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 19
Default soaring into the future

Brad wrote:
Hi Shawn,


snip

I suspect the prepreg technique used in the Sparrowhawk is in the right
direction.


Here is disagree. Greg is fortunate to have use of the huge autoclave
at the Lancair/Columbia factory, I think.
Although Out of Autoclave could be done with the right tooling and
materials. But I think wet layup and vacuum bagging would be cheaper.


Agreed, I'm thinking to make a big dent in glider price (I'm in the
depressed Dollar US, and I *won't* buy a Chinese glider) the method of
manufacturing will have to be very different.
More composite manufacturers making aircraft and wind turbine parts
might make more autoclave space available. Heated molds are a
possibility (read about it on a wind turbine site). I suspect new
composite technology is coming along all the time (not my field). A
fuselage formed by winding carbon fiber tape around a male mold seems
pretty straightforward, spars too. I don't know if a wing could be made
with a precise enough profile in this way, interesting thought though.
I know there are specialty companies applying all sorts of new composite
technology. Farming out rather than investing in house might make a lot
of sense in the small numbers world of sailplane manufacturing. Save on
tooling, benefit from the sub's economy of scale. Certainly not
business as usual in the glider industry.

snip

P.S. Sorry that this is so disjointed, dinner's ready :-)


mines on hold.......had to take a dog to the vets......


Hope the pup's OK. Had to do this three weeks and four stitches to the
leg ago.


Shawn

  #10  
Old December 26th 07, 07:21 AM posted to rec.aviation.soaring
Marc Ramsey[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 211
Default soaring into the future

Shawn wrote:
Brad wrote:
Here is disagree. Greg is fortunate to have use of the huge autoclave
at the Lancair/Columbia factory, I think.
Although Out of Autoclave could be done with the right tooling and
materials. But I think wet layup and vacuum bagging would be cheaper.


Agreed, I'm thinking to make a big dent in glider price (I'm in the
depressed Dollar US, and I *won't* buy a Chinese glider) the method of
manufacturing will have to be very different.
More composite manufacturers making aircraft and wind turbine parts
might make more autoclave space available. Heated molds are a
possibility (read about it on a wind turbine site). I suspect new
composite technology is coming along all the time (not my field). A
fuselage formed by winding carbon fiber tape around a male mold seems
pretty straightforward, spars too. I don't know if a wing could be made
with a precise enough profile in this way, interesting thought though. I
know there are specialty companies applying all sorts of new composite
technology. Farming out rather than investing in house might make a lot
of sense in the small numbers world of sailplane manufacturing. Save on
tooling, benefit from the sub's economy of scale. Certainly not
business as usual in the glider industry.


The Edgley EA9 was primarily constructed from CNC laser cut composite
honeycomb panels, wrapped around and bonded to ribs and formers.
Clearly this can't produce a super accurate wing profile, but might
result in some reduction in the labor required to produce wing or
fuselage parts.

If I remember correctly, the EA9 kit was fairly inexpensive, and could
be built in a few hundred hours. Marketing a kit built single seat
ASK-18 look-alike during the 90s was clearly a mistake. I suspect there
would be a bit more of a market for a factory built US LSA two seat
glider, if the price could be kept closer to $50K than $100K...

Marc
 




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