Wednesday, February 18, 2009

HobbyZone Super Cub Maiden Flight

Date: 07Feb2009

Equipment: (Super Cub- Stock Plane and Electronics)
WX: Windy at altitude- high gusts, Temp ~20F
Ground Conditions: Snow 3-5 inches

Field: (large Soccer / Baseball Field)

Flight Summary
It was a crisp, sunny MN morning. And my flying career was about to begin. With the plane, and 5 year old daughter in tow, I headed to the flying field which happens to be directly behind my backyard.

Since, I couldn't decide if I should hand launch
the Cub or go with a ground rolling start, I asked my 5 year old co-pilot and her confidence inspiring reply was- "Ground Daddy".

The plane took off well from a snow packed ground. Yes!! I am flying-- all that SIM experience has payed off! Trying to be conservative, I cut the p
ower back to about 1/2 throttle. The SC made its way up to about 25-30 ft ( in about 30seconds into the flight ) and I lost control. In more descriptive terms, The plane ended up on the wrong side of home plate. Between me and the plane was a 25 ft tall fence and netting- designed to keep the errant foul ball from nailing the spectators. I had hit a foul...

My pilot mind began to race. I tried plan A which was add more power and try to make it over the large net- this wasn't working. Assessing the situation I looked for a plan B- with a distinct desire not to exit my flying area and with no water landing possible my only choice was Plan C. Turn off the transmitter, fold up the antenna and plan to spend another $127 dollars on a new SC.....

The plane glided away out of site in a scene reminiscent of one of my many model rocket experiences from the summer before. I had a sinking feeling that my flying career had ended before it ever began. On top of that
my 5 year old didn't seem too impressed with the whole take the plane up and let it float away flying style I had just demonstrated.

Ultimately, I had to use a plastic pole to ge
t the plane out of a tree which out of an apparent act of grace was cradling the once-lost SC about 10 feet above the ground. No collateral damage, I was relieved

Key Learnings

  • If it is windy on the ground it is even windier in the air

  • It is hard to learn to fly in the wind- start when its calm if you can wait

  • Fly the plane up wind (you are down wind)

  • The plane will stall / become uncontrollable at low airspeed turning back into the wind

  • Fly well within your field boundaries

  • Don't run off looking for your plane without bringing your 5 year old with you

Amazingly, no damage other than the hopes of a slightly un-impressed 5-year old daughter. I'll win her back!

Cumulative Flights: 1 (sort of)
Cumulative Hrs: 0.01
Successful Landings: 0
$ to date: $154

1 comment:

  1. Great! I laughed. I bought a SuperCub and flew it with zero sim experience. Very shaky. Also in Plymouth, MN