Author Topic: Gron commits aviation 2011.  (Read 10677 times)

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #17 on: October 29, 2011, 16:35:49 PM »
28th October 2011
90 minutes of circuits in Runway 21 & trying to get used to the nuances of G-LEEK i.e landing a twitchy tail dragger with a bit if a cross wind.  It's a bit like landing  a Tesco trolley, but it's coming along!  Should be able to master it soon - roll on my first solo on G-LEEK -  :| :o .  Gron.
 

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Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2011, 21:39:28 PM »
I'll have to dig out some inflatable arm wings after the kids, Steve!!
It is a bit worrying when you're out over the ocean.  Whenever I drive across the Severn Bridge, I always wonder how did Nick felt when he was crossing this bit of the Bristol Channel ................................................on only a paraglider??!!     

Offline Steve Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2011, 20:53:57 PM »
Got an Octopus IV (kid's dinghy) if you need some survival equipment, Gron :) About 50 big puffs on the wing of a ditched ac should see it inflated ;D

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2011, 22:43:55 PM »
Thursday 20th October.    Another 2 hours (Well 1 hour - 50 mins actually) of exploring Pembrokeshire from the air.  Made a point of finding 2 little grass landing strips, for future use.  Doing some map reading and occasionally - road following (Yeah, yeah  - OK - we've all done it..... haven't we??? - it's not really cheating  - is it  ;)  ?!!)   One was at the tiny village of Bethesda, not far from Narberth, but North of the A40, and the other was the Golf Course at RoseMarket - ...................................Yes - you read that correctly!! - It IS the Golf Course - a small 9 holer - where the owner is a flyer himself, and welcomes visiting pilots - AS LONG as they phone up beforehand to say they're on the way in.  A nice long rectangle of grass is mown right up the middle of the longest fairway!!  We did a couple of orbits of the course, and a practice approach for the ...fair..........sorry..........RUNway.
Then we toddled off down the magnificent Cledddau estuary, with its huge forking outline, and down over Milford Haven to Dale.  I took the plane out to sea then for a little aeriel view of Skomer Island, and a bird's eye view of its narrow isthmus.  (Don't worry - I didn't bother any Puffins or Manx Shearwaters - as I went up to 2,500feet for this bit - for the reassurance of being able to glide back to the Dale Peninsula!)
The Escapade is VERY draughty - and the cabin heater only partly helped the situation.  The back of my neck and door side leg was freezing!  I can only just begin to imagine the pain of the cold hands Chris Dusgate had today up in the clouds between Merthyr and Pontypool  :o !!  My hands have been cold enough at Rhossili sometimes!  I'm considering wearing my flying suit in future!
Congratulations, Chris - Good flight!

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2011, 22:25:15 PM »
16 October 2011
Nice 2 hours flying in our Escapade G-LEEK - Steve Pugh Jones and myself.  (Some of you may remember him from our Club Trip to Algodonalez in 2003.)  Far more cloud around than I'd expected from the forecast.  We headed up to Lampeter to check out a large flat field at Creuddyn Bridge, where the farmer had given permission for light aircraft to land.  Too many sheep around today, and probably the grass very wet and slippery, and so thought it best to leave it for another drier day!   After a few low circuits, it was then off to Carmarthen, and later down the Taff estuary to Laurghne, & then off to check out Marros, to get a higher appreciation of its topography.  It was then nice to see Saundersfoot and Tenby from the air.  Rain descended over Haverfordwest just as we were going to return, and the masses of grey cloud forced us down to 500 feet over the branch of the Cleddau river that we knew led back to the aerodrome.  That was NOT a nice feeling!  However, it brightened up as we headed for the coast, and so were then able to execute a downwind approach to Runway 21.  We had taken off on 27, and so the wind had backed during our airborne time.  It was great to see Brian Fallows from Ammanford doing circuits in a single seater de-regulated flex wing microlight after we had landed. That is basically a glorified hang glider with a small engine - lovely SIMPLE flying. I hope all who flew today landed with a smile on their faces - as we did!

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2011, 23:13:10 PM »

Offline Steve Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2011, 09:43:08 AM »
Hi Gron,
Always good to read your blogs. Yes, I saw the Spitfire a few years back, (while on a jolly in my mates RV9). The Spit is an ex RAustralianAF example if I remember.
Strange co-incidence, bumped into two 'lost' Ozzies touring the back roads around Trecastle on Saturday (13th). One was wearing a Spitfire brooch which caught my attention. They mentioned they were heading to the Haverfordwest area on their travels, so told them about the project at Haverfordwest Airport. Small world.
My first thoughts about the airframe was the cost aspect.... :|
The engine was out of the fuselage when I last saw it.  Truely a hideden treasure though.

Re. your visit to Dunkeswell in the past week or so, did the neighbouring farmer still have his sillage bales, stacked  quite high, at the end of the runway ? Quite daunting if you needed a long TO run !

Safe landings.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2011, 18:41:53 PM by SteveJ »

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2011, 23:38:50 PM »
14th August
Yes, yes....I know I should have been down at Rhossili, OR down Newgale with Gerry - but I want to get qualified on the bigger Cessna, - so off I toddled to Haverfordwest today, for a try on a Cessna 172 XP  4 seater    (XP stands for "variable pitch").   First I had a briefing on the nuances of variable pitch and constant speed propellor - bit of physics involved there.  Then I had to get my head around how opening or closing the throttle varies manifold pressure - and that's the guage (in inches of Mercury) you have to check with throttle usage - not RPM as per usual.
Actually, I found the bigger and heavier plane lovely to fly  - just so stable and powerful.  Did a lot of climbing and descending over the Preselis (no paragliders in sight!)  and out over the sea past Fishguard.  Then it was down for a landing at West Wales Airport, Aberporth - for tea and cakes with one other plane out of Haverfordwest and another from Swansea.  Back to HWest after that, for a landing on 27 - .......................expensive afternoon, but great experience.
If any of you manage to get down to HW aerodrome on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday -  be sure to call and see the small Spitfire Museum.  There are parts od an old Spitfire there, and the hope is to put it all together in to one restored FLYING Spitfire!  I reckon it's going to take years!  Steve Jones would probably be interested to see it!

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2011, 14:15:43 PM »
MARROS  Sunday morning 31 July 2011
Very strong conditions - but incredibly lifty under the ominous low grey cloud. Tricky launches for everyone - waiting for little lulls, but still getting blasted up vertically space shuttle style!  (Ah well! - The NASA Space Shuttle programme may have come to an end................BUT.............there's always SWWSC!  :D )
The lift band was massive, with huge extensions out to both sides of launch, and way out over the beach and to the sea - tide about half way, - so, - much like Rhossili on a good day, when you're out there looking at the waves below!  While we were flying it became more SE than S.  At one time there were 6 of us in the air : Nick Bamber doing a tandem with one of his students, then for SWWSC - Gerry, Stu, Barry, Steve the Alien and yours truly.  Nick's students huddled on the ground in the wind, and we all watched Nick fly the Astra Mini Glider - NO problems staying up in all that incredible lift.  Gareth Pawan got flying as well, so it was well worth the trip for all of us - especially with the nice little social in the pub afterwards when the drizzle and poor vis stopped play.  Top marks for travelling distance to T.O. - Steve W from Brecon, - and Nick's female student ............ from Cardiff! My flight about half an hour.  Have written this in work - naughty, naughty!!

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2011, 22:45:27 PM »
24th July 2011   Cross Hands to Dunkeswell, Devon.
Took off with my mate in his Icarus C42 from his field near Cross Hands (5mins from my house!) at about 11.00am.  First stop - the grass farm strip at Margam, just a bit inland from the golf course you can see from the M4.  VERY uncomfortable approach with the westerly component wind ACROSS the north/south runway.  Turbulence and rotor off the trees on finals - so  open up the power for a go-around   - Phew!!  Next one - a crabbing approach, few bounces - but we're down!  Nobody at all there! - probably considering it unflyable ??!! :(   :o
So....no cup of coffee - instead, don a life jacket for the for water crossing ahead - PLEASE don't stop little engine  :-[  !  Fly across the channel at 3,500feet,  - sooooo nice to see that coast arrive underneath!! then just about find our way to to Dunkeswell in South Devon.  Very murky down there, - should do a circuit join at 2,000ft really, BUT cloud base down there at 1,400 - so have to keep  visual just underneath the nasty dark grey stuff!  Nice landing on runway 22, just in time to see the 3 Yaks of the Swansea Osprey display team land just behind us!   Sunday carvery lunch in the restaurant there, then a nice stroll around the different hangars to see the different rather heavy paragliders (?)  inside.    I took off and flew us home over the very threatening Exmoor - with the ground coming up to meet us and the cloud base coming down :-[ :-[ :-[  - did quite a bit of ducking and weaving to find a way over.  Crossing the channel also quite palpitation inducing - with NO reassuring view of the South Wales coast to greet us!  Ah well - trust the compass!  Stay out of Cardiff airspace - then VERY nice to see Porthcawl ahead!   More lessons learned.  (Far more than from always flying in perfect blue sky conditions - but do we get many of those??)

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2011, 23:46:06 PM »
Sunday 29th May - In cloud for 1.5 hrs!
Well - in AND out of cloud really...............but more IN!
May was about to end, and like many of us, I had not been airborne...................I know..........it's horrible isn't it?!
I was having withdrawal symptoms, so off I went on a bad day, thick grey stuff over Llanddarog - but determined to get stuck in to some of it..............all good for experience and all that!
I flew in the Cessna 150 for an hour and a half - all sweaty palms stuff with reliance on instruments  - to log some IMC ( = Instrument Meteorological Conditions) hours.  Yes - little light sircraft get cloud suck too!!  You're trying your best to fly straight and level within cloud and zero visibility - not easy with all that cloud turbulence.................when all at once, your VSI (Vertical speed indicator) tells you you're going UP at 1000 feet per minute!  Anyway - I thoroughly enjoyed it!  Aren't GPSs just amazing - when a little arrow shows you the way back to the airfield, and when it eventually flips through 180 degrees, you know you are right over the main runway - (if you're not - you're stuffed!)
Was going to try an evening paraglide down at Ferryside this evening (Wednesday 1st June) - but fortunately, Stu Kelly phoned me to say there was an RAF helicopter buzzing the area - so it was all off!

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2011, 08:48:19 AM »
Good Friday 22nd April 2011 - BRYNCAWS.
Nice to out on the hill again, unfolding my nice neat paraglider after its service at Aerofix last October! Shame to ruffle it up really, ...............and later adding insult to injury by getting sheep poo stains on it!  Had a long chat with the farmer, John Stephens,  on the way up - very friendly and approachable, and quite keen on the flying - even said he'd be happy for me to take off from one of his fields with the paramotor  ::)   ;) .   There's going to be drilling for gas on his land soon!  Sound like he made alot of money from the gas pipeline from Milford Haven last year, and now stands to make even more money from wind turbines.  Just ONE of those things brings in 10K in annual rent, PLUS a share of the electricity it produces!
Great to have a yarn with those already up on the hill - Viv, Gerry, Nick, Paul H, Barry, Stu, Wattsy, Gareth P and Jon M.  Thhe conditions were not classic, a bit strong and gnarly, and a bit too southerly.  Had a bit of a boat around  - but at one stage got a bit pinned after going too far left to the far edge of the forrest.  Paul's video nicely demonstrates the difference in ground speed between the tack off to the left, and then the return to the right.  Gonna try some more tail dragging at H'west tomorrow -  :-[ .

Offline Stu Kelly

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2011, 23:42:53 PM »
Well done Gron!!
Good luck with the conversion. Sounds Scary >:D  Can't wait to have a fly with you sometime!! Will bring my harness & Reserve with me ;)
 
Stu!!
"If you were born without wings,do nothing to prevent them from growing;)"

Offline Gron Jones

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2011, 23:29:43 PM »
Thanks for the comments lads.
I'm now in the terrifying process of doing a tail wheel conversion.  Please believe me - this definitely ain't fun - not at this stage anyway!  (and I speak as one who has taken off on the wooden hang glider take off ramp overlooking the Annecy valley - pretty scary and demanding of a committed run down the gang plank to nowhere - to get air speed!)
The little tiny plane I've a bought a share in is an Escapade - a bit retro looking, rather like a Piper Cub.  I flew it with an instructor last Sunday - and it is a major handful at transition speed, i.e. getting up to take off speed, or decelerating from landing speed.  It just will not go straight, and you get the feeling you're going to crash!  A nice stable Cessna it most certainly is not!

Offline Nick Roberts

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Re: Gron commits aviation 2011.
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2011, 12:08:57 PM »
Congratulations Gron
 
 You are now "The Flying Doctor"   :)