Saturday 29th May 2010

First an update from Wednesday. Bob’s winch training resulted in Barry Green being signed off as a winch driver  Well done both of you.

Low cloud and showers every few minutes did not bode well for flying today.

It was nice to see members taking advantage of the non flying conditions to push ahead with their projects. Martin Smith, Rick and Mathew Wiles were in a huddle around various computer parts most of the morning working on the Glider Simulator project. This is really making progress and the new 42” screen looks really good.

Ged was swotting up for his instructor course which is due to start next Saturday.

The forecast for the rest of the weekend looks better.


Wednesday 26th May 2010

The weather today was uninspiring with 8/8 cloud and a gentle easterly breeze.

A good training day with Don conducting the flying training at the west end and Bob conducting winch training at the other.

As the airfield was fairly quiet, Ged took advantage to fly some last minute exercises with Don before his instructor course on the 5th June.


Sunday 23rd May 2010

Easterly wind with a strong inversion at about 1500ft QFE. Despite this Trevor showed us it was still soarable---if you were determined and patient.

Martin Cropper spent most of the day entertaining trial lessons and Alan Ballard patiently managed the winch all day.

Several people converted onto the K6, Guy Massey, Jeff Cragg, Robin Wilson, and Colin Boyd. It was good to see yet another old member Frank Hopkins pop in and check us out, hopefully we will see more of him in the future.

Thanks everyone for making the day possible.


Saturday 22nd May 2010

A beautiful warm summer day with temperatures in mid 20’s, blue sky and a warm breeze from the east. Definitely a shorts and tee shirt day.

There was lots of early activity, with club gliders and the airfield being made ready. There was also furious rigging activity amongst the private gliders with the Jantar 1, Open Cirrus, ASW20, 2*Astirs, and an SF27  all out and ready.

This activity was augmented by forecasts from Trevor on the club forum over the last few days that this was going to be the “day of days”, 500km flights, 5 hour flights, height claims etc..

How could he have been so wrong? The air was very stable with little or no soaring for most of the day. So, Trevor has earned himself a copy of the “Ladybird Book of Weather Forecasting” and a place on the Wooden Spoon Trophy list for this year ( a trophy he has already won several times ).

The day was not wasted though. Flying training continued apace. Winch driver training was on the go all day with Roger and Martin being signed off as winch drivers and Sean promoted to the lofty heights of Winch Instructor.
We welcomed back Bob Pirie, our Wednesday instructor, who has been on holiday in Portugal for a few weeks, with comments about the weather having been as nice as this all the time he has been away. I don’t think he believed us .


Wednesday 19th May 2010

With the fog on the airfield all day there was no flying.

The club was bustling with members keen to catch up with some of the maintenance tasks.

The club's new load cell was commisioned and put to good use weighing both of the club's K13s. As this task required both gliders to be derigged to weigh the wings seperately, and then reassembled ready for Saturday, this was not a 5 minute job.

By now the members were into their stride taking gliders apart so the K8 was derigged and installed onto the newly refurbished K8 open trailer. The purpose of this test was to ensure that the trailer and equipment is ready for use to retrieve the K8 / K6 gliders from distant fields when our new crop of cross country pilots venture away from the airfield

To make the test as realistic as possible, 3 of our physically smaller members were volunteered ( press ganged? ) to load the trailer while the rest of the members offered helpful comments ( otherwise known as rude comments and barracking ). The test was successful and the glider was reassembled ready for Saturday.


Sunday 16th May 2010

Today was a washout.

After some classroom teaching, general banter and the compulsory tea / coffee consumption, the airfield was abandoned in favour of a visit to a local Antiques Fair.


Saturday 15th May 2010

Blue sky, north westerly breeze,  rapidly forming cu, should be a good day.

No. The good looking cloud was not supported by any usable thermals. However, this made the conditions good for lots of training and this continued at a good pace throughout the day.

The private gliders ( ASW20, Open Cirrus and Jantar1 ) almost looked forlorn lined up at the launch point waiting for the conditions to chamge.

And at 3pm change it did. The amount of cloud reduced, the breeze swung arount to the west as a new airmass arrived. Game on. Suddenly gliders were soaring. The private gliders launched. Additional gliders were hastily collected from the hangar to join the fun.

The conditions were far from classic with very narrow thermals that were not very well organised. However, most pilots managed local soaring flights and all ended the day with big grins and a rosy glow.

After the toys were put away and most of the members had departed, the committee assembled in the clubhouse for a meeting which continued until well after dark.


Wednesday 12th May 2010

The day started with blue sky and a moderate breeze mostly from the north. The thermal activity started early and offered plenty of soaring. Pilots were reporting cloudbase at 4200 feet above the airfield.

Alan Ballard made good use of the conditions with a flight of just over 2 hours which will count towards his cross country endorsement. Andrew Beaumont added a flight of 40+ minutes to record his first bronge leg.

Phil Hardwick and Trevor Taylor made an cross country flight of 78 kms with an out and return flight to Eaglescott in the Twin Astir.

Barry Green made an "out and return" attempt to North Hill in his Astir CS. However, after getting to the Exe valley a sudden change in the conditions cut off the thermals and any possibilty of a return to Brentor. A field landing was inevitable. Barry made a good field selection, a good circuit and approach, and as for the landing, a slightly sheepish Barry said "if I had remembered to lower the undercarraige it would have been a cracker!". Even so, there was no damage and the retrieve crew had him back to the airfield by 6pm, just in time to head off to the pub.

Rain eventually stopped play.


Congratulations Martin Smith

Martin Smith has re-qualilfied as an Assistant Category Instructor after a successful test with the regional examiner.Well done Martin


Sunday 9th May 2010

Chilly day, with a northerly wind and a hopeful looking sky.

Unfortunately very little in the way of useable lift developed, Alan
Ballard showed us all up by soaring quite happily.

Well done Alan Carter, first flight in the K6.

Lots of instructor training today, briefly interrupted by a flying
visit from our DCFI in the Rotax Falke---gosh that thing is quiet.


Saturday 8th May 2010

Today started with very low cloud, occational drizzle and a strong wind from the NE.

The club was busy with members catching up with various projects. Bob,Ged and John were repairing the tracks. Don was in hangar tidying mode and Martin, with juniors Mathew and Simon, made a very good start on the simulator project by cutting the old FHU cockpit from the rest of the fuselage and preparing it for painting.

The cloud lifted a little after lunch and gave our trainee pilots and visiting instructor Tim a chance to tackle the cross wind conditions.


Junior Gliding

It is with great excitement, and not a little pride, that I received the news today that Dartmoor Gliding Society has been accredited as a Junior Gliding Centre by the British Gliding Association ( BGA ).

The aim of this project is to encourage more juniors into our sport. We will be publishing more details on the new "Junior Gliding" page on the club website in the near future.

Many thanks to Bob Jones, our Junior Gliding Coordinator, ( as well as Club Secretary ) for his work on achieving this accreditation.

Steve Lewis ( Chairman ) 

Wednesday 5th May 2010

A light northerly all day with broken thermals to 2600 QFE.

Farmer Phil, assisted taking the old trailer full of old scrap metal
to the dump first thing---over £100 for the old rubbish, we need to do
that again!

Winch training continued today with Bob patiently sitting
in and keeping our trainee drivers out of trouble. A steady training day today with the 2 seaters busy all day, lots of bronze C stuff completed.

A warm welcome to Colin Boyd who we all hope wil decide to rejoin us.


Monday 3rd May 2010

Guy massey showed us the way by opening the hangar doors before 8
am----almost caught me out.

An awkward cross wind all day, but strong thermals at times. One 2 seater was out of action with a minor defect, this made the remaining 2 seater busy. Some useful flying training,

Stuart celebrated going on the fixed price to solo scheme with athermal climb to almost 4000ft over the airfield---good fun.


Sunday 2nd May 2010

Weather grim, low cloud and drizzle in the morning.

A good day for a weather briefing and some more tidying up.

The weather brightened later, but too late to usefully use the window.


Saturday 1st May 2010

The forecast today looked promising. The early weather was not as the forecast had predicted with very low cloud and drizzle.

The faithful were rewarded with a break in the weather just after midday. Toys out of the hangar and soaring by 1:30pm.

Dave and Daryl, the two trainees on site took advantage of the situation to get in lots of training flights with CFI Don.

Also taking advantage were Ged and David who were using Don’s expertise for some Instructor Preparation flights.

Steve Lewis