Wednesday 31st March 2010

A sodden airfield, and a biting wind with horizontal sleet against a backdrop of a snow-covered moor, failed to deter a jolly group of Wednesday regulars from turning out and continuing to spruce up the place in readiness for the Open Day.

Encouraged by the tremendous inroads made by members last weekend, and guided by Don's hit-list of tasks, the team was ruthless in its disposal of junk and in trying to ensure that visitors receive a good impression right from the moment when they drive through the gate.

Ged in the digger and a trio of shovellers made a major dent in the pile of road planings - and at the same time reduced the number of 'dents' in the main track down the centre of the airfield (although the improvements were difficult to see because of the amount of water).

Finally, a big 'thank you' to Heather for her dedication and hard work both today and on previous occasions, which has transformed the appearance, cleanliness and comfort of the clubhouse.

Disappointing to have yet another unflyable Wednesday, but it was all good fun.

Thanks to everyone who took part.

Bob Pirie

Sunday 28th March 2010

A quiet day and a grim weather forecast.

Thanks very much to the small gang who emptied the old furniture from the generator building, and disposed of the rubbish, and then proceeded to usefully use the space to store groundwork tools, oil and
other stuff that is best out of the hangar.

A little more bronze C stuff completed by Alan Ballard, who celebrated by giving into his pyromaniac tendencies and had a bonfire. The place definitely looks smarter now.


Saturday 27th March 2010

The forecast was for a fine (ish) day. So the thick fog at the airfield was a bit of a surprise.

There were lots of members present who quickly formed themselves into groups to get some work done.

One group, lead by CFI Don, tidied up the hangar in preparation for next weeks open day. Another group were in the clubhouse working on the website project, it looked more like a computer class in there.

Martin, as resouceful as ever, decided that in light of the recent burning of the local gorse he would search  for lost launch strops and promply found several saving the club a considerable sum of money.

Flying commenced mid afternoon as conditions dramically improved. Best flight of the day was by Mathew , one of our junior pilots who managed to follow a cloud street whist practicing flying the K13 from the back seat. I think he is determined to be CFI  before he reaches the ripe old age of 21.

Steve Lewis

Wednesday 25th March 2010

Rain and low cloud  su unfortunately no flying today.

The DGS AGM was held in the clubhouse at 6.30pm. The well attended meeting heard reports from the chairman, secretary, treasurer, safety officer and CFI which outlined the performance of the club during the past 12 months and presented the challenges and opportunities in our very exciting future.

Steve Lewis

Sunday 21st March 2010

Warm and sunny to start with 240/15 winds. Thermals started popping off by 9.30, as the day progressed the winds backed more southerly and strenghtened. Around 4pm cloudbase reduced to 600ft as the frontal systems approached.

A busy day on the field, with several trial lessons and pupils.

Unfortunately for Trevor he couldnt launch the Jantar (technical problem) when he needed to and the conditions deteoriated before he could get on his task.

Sandra flew the K6 for the first time, well done. The day was finished off with a field landing briefing.

Great to see people now bringing in the weather and NOTAM information. keep it up, practice makes perfect.

We now have a computer in the clubroom, the old charts donated are being handed out to trainees, the bronze syllabus is on the computer, we have a whiteboard for the launch vehicle and most importantly we have a coffee machine.

Thanks everyone for making that all happen.


Award for Roger Matthews

At the awards ceremony at the end of the British Giding Associations Annual General Meeting yesterday, it was announced that ex CFI Roger Matthews has been awarded the BGA Diploma for Services to Gliding

Roger had been the Chief Flying Instructor of the Dartmoor Gliding Society for 15 years until his retirement from the post at the end of last year.

Roger continues to serve DGS a Director

Congratulations Roger and many thanks from all at DGS

Saturday 20th March 2010

Strong winds, low cloud and rain made this a non flying day.

There were plenty of members at the club to take advantage of the lectures given by Don on getting and interpreting the Met data. This was followed by a discussion on altimetry.

Whilst these lectures were aimed at the pre bronze pilots, even the more senior pilots were quiet as they also learned a thing or two.

The pre solo pilots were given an appreciation of the Training Data from the club website - a resource they will use a lot in the coming weeks.

Steve Lewis

Martin Cropper on his travels

Club member Martin Cropper has been busy. He recently re-validated his instructor rating - Very well done Martin

Not wanting to rest on his laurels he followed this with a week with the Black Mountains Gliding Club at Talgarth in Wales, organised by Seahawk GC at Culdrose.

In three and a half days flying, (Thursday was unflyable due to wind strength and direction) Martin managed over 15 hours aloft: 6 hours dual and 9+ hours solo,

Not all went to plan as the picture shows when, after a mere 11kms cross country on the southern ridge, he was forced to make a field landing near Treteower whilst flying the Talgarth Pirat.

Steve Lewis

Wednesday 17th March 2010

The airfield was shrouded in thick mist. With visibility less than 500 metres and no sign of a break any time soon, today's flying programme was reluctantly cancelled.

Was this a wasted day?

The day started with a group effort to sort out the hangar and create some additional space.

Robin Wilson, who has just returned from his winter sun hideaway, began his training with Field Treasurer David Rippon so that they can share this job in future.

Ged Neviski and Tony Thorne replaced a broken CV joint on the grey Discovery.

The technical team, in the guise of Dave Hooper, John Bolt and Colin Sanders, completed the glider weighing project.

Steve Lewis, Bob Jones and David Jesty scrapped an old glider trailer, which was well passed it's sell by date.

Phew !!

Steve  Lewis

Sunday 14th March 2010

Another sunny day. Winds NW 10 knots.

Well done Jeff Cragg, first solo in the K8.

Guy Massey came for a "soaring tuition flight", and refamiliarised himself with the art of soaring after a 10 year layoff.

Thermal conditions became reasonable around 2 pm with climbs of 6 knots to be had, a very pleasant day.

Thanks everyone for making it possible.

Don Puttock

Saturday 13th March 2010

Today's blue sky and light NW wind promised of some good thermal activity.

Alan and Sandra took advantage of the early conditions to get some soaring training from Don and both managed soaring flights in the K13.

The private gliders launched into what looked like an improving sky and and for a while enjoyed some bouyant conditions. The Nimbus 4 flown by ex CFI Roger made a brief appearence having flown down from it's home base at Dunkeswell.

A flat grey cloud sheet then covered the area and the winds strengthened from the west. This cut off the thermal activity quite quickly. All the gliders arrived back at the airfield more or less together so for a short time the runway was full of gliders.

Everyone had plenty of flying and the day ended with tea and buscuits in the clubhouse.

Steve Lewis 

Wednesday 11th March 2010

Potentially a frustrating day, with equipment which Bob J. had prudently rescued from the fire threat on Tuesday evening needing repositioning, DMX having to be rigged after Sunday's out-landing, both two seaters being taken offline for weighing, and single cable operation being necessary until the retrieve trailer had been repaired.
But on the plus-side, the sun shone all day, the airfield was in great shape and everyone got stuck in to sort out the aforementioned 'challenges' and get flying. Everyone who wanted to fly flew.
There was fun for all, with some wave plus strong thermals - but strong sink and a variable x-wind keeping everyone on their toes.
Special thanks to John Bolt, Dave Hooper and Colin Saunders for completing the weighing and to Dave for inspecting BVB's replaced instrument panel; to Gus for reparing the cable retrieve trailer and to Steve Clark for giving up a day's soaring from Dunkeswell and chipping in to help rig DMX.
Visitor-wise, trial lessons were provided for a corporate group of four from a company called Ice Games in St.Austell, whose boss decided to give them a treat. 
Also, it was good to meet a couple of 'returnees' from days gone by at Brentor, including Guy Massey who, after three flights, began to show symptoms of becoming re-addicted.
Bob Pirie

Sunday 7th March 2010

After several days of teasing, the wave set up today with a vengence.

The wind was strong from the east and the wave was accessible from a winch launch.

Did the DGS pilots make the most of it? I think so.

Roger Green flew his Astir to 11,300 ft above the airfield for his Gold height after an 800ft winch launch. His father Barry flew the same Astir to Silver height.

Roger Green's view over Plymouth and 
the Rame Peninsula from 11000 feet

Mike Jardine in the other Astir flew for 5 hours and claimed silver height and duration in the same flight. Well done Mike.

And the other pilots. David Jesty flew his LS8 well in excess of 15,000 ft followed by Trevor Taylor in the Jantar1 who used his initial 10,000 ft to fly 180km a "cats cradle" cross country flight. Trevor also reported his strongest ever climb with 14.8 knots showing on the averager. Thats a vertical speed of over 17 miles an hour

Today's wooden spoon probably belongs to our visiting instructor Steve Westlake who fllew with Steve Clarke, a very experienced pilot, in the K13 and managed to land out (safely) in a local field.

Steve Lewis

Saturday 6th March 2010

Today started with a sunny blue sky. Wind was 7 knots NNE.

There was lots of early activity as everyone was hoping for wave. In addition to the club gliders, three private gliders made an appearence. Did they know something we did not?

In the event there was some low level thermal activity but no real sign of the hoped for wave.

The wooden spoon must go to Andrew who needed to fly for 30 minutes as part of his Bronge "C" qualification and landed after 26 minutes. Better luck next time. 

Our thanks are owed to visiting instructors Steve Westlake and Stuart Proctor who supervised the flying and undertook a lot of training flights in the absence of our CFI who is busy getting a suntan on Tenerife.

Steve Lewis

Wednesday 3rd March 2010

With the wind strong and from the south east there was excitement and expectation around the site. Will the wave work today?

The wave was indeed working.

David Rippon worked with Don on his General Flight Test. He then flew on his own and put another bronze leg in his log book. 

Everyone managed soaring flights. Most flew for an hour or so, returning to the airfield for a warming cup of coffee before flying again.

And what about the site?

After several days of drying winds and some judicious rolling by club secretary Bob Jones, the runway stood up well to the day's  flying and is in good shape for next weekend. 

Steve Lewis

Sunday 28th February 2010

A very windy and cloudy start to the day.

The field was still far too wet to fly, but the wind is having a good drying effect.

A climb to the top of Brentor church was useful because the local fields can be viewed at your leisure----anyone prepping for the cross country endorsement would find this useful.

A happy hour was also spent examining the ridge running from the airfield to Meldon (and the fields). Lets get these trailers serviced, I can see an amazing amount of fun is to be had when the weather gets better.

Don Puttock