DGS News - Saturday 30th June 2013

Winds 10 knots NW, high pressure, lots of cloud cover and a poor soaring forecast all pointed towards a training day.

Visitor Rob Larter ready for his air experience flight 
The assembled members split into 2 groups. The fliers and the fixers. The fliers, with instructors Don and Steve took K13 G-DDMX to the launch point and filled the day with a mix of training, Air Experience and club flying. There was a little thermal activity but only enough to sustain 800 feet or so. More like “falling with style” than proper soaring really. The afternoon finished a little earlier than expected when the cloudbase lowered quickly to 800 feet.

Visitor Simon Greenaway ( 2nd from the right) pictured here with family and friends enjoyed  a short soaring flight as his introduction to gliding
Meanwhile in the hangar it was all go, with much work going on to get the “new to us” K7M GDDAK ready to join the fleet and to finish off the Pirat. The plan is now to C of A the Pirat on Wednesday with the K7 following shortly afterwards. Great news.


Interclub League Day 2 – Trevor Taylor

Sunday 2nd June 2013

Washed glider,changed batteries,  daily inspection.  Had breakfast (bacon butty again) and lots of coffee. Briefing at 10.00. Oh did I forget to mention that the wind has dropped to 5 knots and that the sun has got his hat on hip hip horary! Its going to be a GOOD DAY!!!  Cloudbase up to 5,000 feet.

At briefing Director congratulated everyone on a safe days flying yesterday. Only one land out, amazing  considering the strong wind. He's not setting a 300km. because of long journey home (a few groans of disappointment). Task for pundits polygon KEE-CHV-BUC-WAN-TRO-KEE  245.8km. In longhand Keevil to Chieveley 58km.to Buckingham 65km. to Wantage 56km. to Trowbridge 61km. to Keevil 7km. Ok, launch when you like.

Day 2 245.8 km task
 Found someone to configure GPS to NMEA output (did it in 5 seconds. It’s great when you know what your doing)  .Feed turn points into LX4000. Magic, it works. The chap who sorted my Glider Guider entered today's task for me (still in See You so lots of page changing again) .

Lots of enthusiastic Air Scouts available to ground handle gliders THANK YOU. Have a quick chat with launch marshal that I would like 60 knots. on the launch as opposed to the 55 knots that I got yesterday.  Guess what?  A  perfect 60 knots all the way to 1,500 feet at 1.00 pm. These guys are really switched on.

Waiting in the grid
Sky looks good but struggle to contact lift, broken 1-2 knots. slowly drifting South towards Salisbury danger zone, lift just improving to 2 knots. steady when Glider Guider beeps airspace close , page changes as I’m trying to get page back BEEP BEEP Airspace infringement, page comes back, too late airspace has changed from blue to RED I'm in it. ****.

Thought for a minute. I know I'll go back land have a relight (start again). Come tearing back full airbrake, land, run up to Steve (task setter) tell him I've blipped airspace Can I have a relight? Yes get on. Off we go again .

Another perfect launch to 1,500 feet. 2.00 pm. Still a little difficult to get started . I’m keeping well away from Danger Zone. Eventually get to cloud base 3,300 feet. Heading for CHV approx.070, see one of many white horses carved in limestone, conditions not as good as it looks. There's some heavy sink around, making progress, get to CHV, Glider Guider beeps (in zone good this time) turn to 010 for BUC 65km. away.

Conditions improving.  cloud base going up. Approaching Didcot famous for its cooling towers (saved many a glider pilot). Most of them now demolished. Fly over Benson MATZ speeding up past Oxford on my left, becoming a bit hazy, some areas going blue but still working, passing Weston on green, Bicester old home of RAFGSA, did my instructors course there way back in 1968 makes me feel old.

Lots of gliders around (must be a good day) press on round BUC turn point there goes that beep again good.

Now heading just South of S W approx.210 towards WAN 56km.away. Make good progress, some gaps, high, no problems fly over Oxford quite pretty from air over 4,000ft.now. Dolphing along for quite a while now (speeding up in sink 70kts. -1flap slowing down in lift 40kts.+2flaps NOT turning) trying to keep on track only minor heading changes.Bing goes WAN

TRO next 61km. 240degrees. Maintaining height reasonably easily, only stop and turn if below 3,000ft. and lift above 6 knots. When LX tells me I'm 2,000ft. above glide slope for TRO (500ft safety ht.built in) I should arrive 2,500ft. above TRO more than enough to do the last 7km. to KEE.

So, no stop, no turn, say no more, really was easy peasy . Slow start ,rest ok, could have gone faster, need practice, 245.8km. 2.00pm start 3 hours.23 minutes. Average Speed 72.6 km per hour.

Task complete - great
Take both the SD card and the micro-recorder to Steve (task setter). Lucky me SD card is OK .He says I did quite well 72.6 km, all turn points ok,but he'll have to give me a 500 point penalty for entering danger zone!!!(in actual fact you are allowed to enter the zone when not active. Like ours, it wasn't active but Bannerdown make it a local rule do NOT go in). I would have come 3rd without the penalty. I thought the relight would have cancelled out the airspace infringement. I’m glad I didn't know about penalty until after flight otherwise I wouldn't have enjoyed the flight so much.

Overall a really great weekend. Thank you Bannerdown.

Trevor Taylor

Interclub League Round 2 Bannerdown Day 1 –Trevor Taylor

Hi this is Trevor who flies a Jantar 1 G-DDFL from Brentor home of Dartmoor Gliding Society (posh name,we’re not posh). With a little perssure (you know who you are) I entered the Inter Club League Pundit class at Bannerdown  Keevil airfield ex-RAF.

Left Brentor 3.30 pm 31May arrived Keevil 7.20pm after an uneventful trip. For those who don’t know the trailer and car are 50 ft. long (towed like a dream)

Made very welcome after a few beers (cider actually) and lots of glider talk kipped down in dining room on blow up mattress  (better than the car as originally planned).

DAY 1 Woke up to what appeared to be a howling gale from the North, as the man said, (Steve Tape task setter) its a 25 Knot wind sock and its horizontal !!!*****. Breakfast of bacon butties ( to honour our CFI of course).
Jantar1 G-DDFL on the way to to launch point.
Briefing 9.30. Postponed to 10.00.  CFI gave us airfield brief, Com director gave us a chat .The main runway is 6,000 feet long WOW. Tasks set Pundit KEE-AVE-WDC-WES-KEE 220.2km In longhand Keevil to Avebury to Worcester Racecourse to Westbury to Keevil.

The task - day 1
Re convene 11.00. Meet at bus at 12.00. The task is ON. (must be mad). Start when you like. Winch launch (Skylaunch) only. Wind still blowing 20 knots.from the north. General feeling amongst pilots "We will be lucky to get to 1st turn point".

Task setter and Director later told us after we all stayed aloft bar 1 that if we don’t set a task the sky will be BOOMING at 3.00 pm, the pilots can only land out.

Problem with Glider Guider only got it last week never used it. LX4000 not working no gps signal.  Found someone to set task in glider guider,only it was on “See You”, because I hadn't subscribed it kept asking me to do so every 90 seconds, it took up to 30 seconds, to change page. Must have cancelled page 150 times during the 4 hour flight.

Winch launches were the order of the day
Launched at approx. 13.00 . 1300 feet launch a little slow just used +1flap. Climbed to cloud base at 3300 feet. Set off for AVE across wind. Lots of white horses carved in limestone. Made it to AVE only 20 km. What a struggle.

Next leg WDC racecourse. Only 90 km.directly into 20 knot. headwind I'll be lucky!!! Head off upwind. It is streeting a bit but they appear to be misaligned with track. There are a few gaps which seem to be reasonably easy to cross. Spoke too soon. Near Wooton Bassett have to back track towards Lyneham.

Struggled to get away now inside Lyneham ATZ (its inactive this weekend) lots of tarmac here. Last time I was here was 40 years ago flying out to Canada in a VC10.

Back up to cloud base, making my way upwind slowly having to cross streets ,wind seems to have more West in it. Pass Kemble lots of airliners parked all around perimeter HS146's I think,with an unmoving Virgin airlines 747 smack bang in the middle of the intersection bad parking or what?

Back to reality, Glider Guider goes ping airspace infringement!!  it informs me I’m 364ft above airspace. Pass Aston Down see Nympsfield off to my left (Hello Dave). Keep at it. Pass Gloucester. :Looking a bit grim ahead Divert left where it looks better. Keep going left towards Great Malvern, see sharp edged ridge not quite into wind. Glider Guider wind direction shows wind change hardly any wind on ridge cloud cover now 8/8 , 900ft above ridge,pick field downwind of ridge. What’s this? 1 knot up (rats its very broken) keep at it gradually climbing (oh for the LX. It shows continual increases or decreases in ht. in ft. i.e +6ft or even less), field still in range, now 2 knots.broken gradually changing to steady. Hooray. It eventually went to 6 knots. Back at cloud base. Racecourse in sight, Round turn point.

DOWNWIND at last.Its taken 3hrs of hard slog. Only 110 km. to go but its 4 pm and 8/8 cloud cover!!! Will I make it? It looks a bit iffy. Set off 102.8 km to WES. clouds still working must keep high.Storming downwind not too bad starting to brighten up ahead. Crossing streets. Wind got a bit of west in it have to keep crossing streets.

Conditions starting to die hit a few bits of heavy sink ,will I make KEE never mind WES??? To be honest I didn’t think would get this far. Getting low. Lyneham again, pick up a 1 knot thermal just south of Lyneham,  keep at it (at least I’m being blown in the right direction), gradually works to 2 knots. taking forever to get to cloud base.

In range of WES and KEE I don't believe it (where have I heard that before) I’m going to make it. Charge off at 70 knots round WES increase speed to 80 knots. cross finish line at 100 knots 600 feet.pull up circuit and land. Easy peasy.

The return trip only took 50 minutes. say no more.

The Jantar on final approach
Gave SD card to Steve to download and guess what? It is BLANK all that for nothing!!! Really cheesed off.

The other pilots told other pilots pointed me in the direction of a computer whizz kid who looked about 10 who recovered the trace in a couple of minutes. No barograph heights.  According to the trace I did the whole flight at 195 feet. and my glide angle was 1/10000

The trace  was accepted. Result.

Trevor Taylor

DGS News Wednesday 26th June 2013

The weather forecast gave a weak front passing through the area with a ridge of high pressure filling in behind. The soaring forecast was not looking too promising but with an initially blue sky and warm sunshine plenty of private gliders were rigged “just in case”.

The fleet waiting " just in case"
We welcome Adrian Pike who returned after his Air Experience flight last week to begin his flying training. Also joining us today was George Hardy who had a couple of Air Experience flights.

Air Experience visitor George Hardy
Throughout the day everybody tried to work the conditions but it never got going and the best flight was only an extended circuit. Still the private owners got practice at rigging and de-rigging their machines and a physical workout that would cost many £’s at the local gym.

In the hangar it was all go, the new K7M was washed and given a thorough inspection prior to it’s C of A and ARC renewal. There is a list of jobs to do but several of these have already been finished. It is planned that these jobs are to be completed soon. Many thanks John for all your hard work.

Also busy today was Dave Bourchier who spent the day working on one of our generators which needs TLC. He has arranged spare parts and hopes to complete this work soon. Meanwhile we will continue to use the 2nd machine


DGS News–Sunday 23rd June 2013

Arriving at the club a little after 9:15 it was clear from the faces around the table that a great deal of effort had gone into – breakfast!  And a great deal of satisfaction derived!  Thus, as the (empty) pans hit the sink (the watery kind), it was impossible to discover whether today’s ‘no-fly’ decision was the outcome of an over breakfast discussion between ‘valour’ and ‘discretion’, following yesterday’s land out, or simply the result of looking at the F214 on which winds of 35 and 40 knots were predicted for 1 and 2 thousand feet amsl. 

And so the opportunity was taken for Dave Parker to retake his Bronze C exam (in which he achieved a ‘competition’ finish), Heather Horsewill and Colin Boyd to power wash anything that didn’t move, and Roger Applebloke and Henry Flower to incinerate anything that did – well almost. 

Having safely passed the rubicon of the ante-meridian, it was deemed time to sample the victoria sponge and scones baked by Dave Parker in preparation for today’s trial lesson honeymoon celebration (sadly cancelled) – if only the bride knew what she was missing! 

And he got a knighthood for it?’  Roger is unimpressed by the Dyson’s ability to suck the remains of Neath from the bottom of the K-8’s fuselage, whilst Martin attempts to assist by ‘powerlifting’ the Dyson to a new elevation (not flight level).
The afternoon was almost more exciting, as we decided to open the treasure chest that was Colin Boyd’s trailer containing the K-8 from Neath.  Therein was found two very tidy looking wings and a very racily liveried fuselage, together with a placard so full of anomalies that the whole issue just screamed ‘weigh me’! 
So it would appear that, with its compatriot K-7M, G-DDAK, last week’s caravanserai to Neath has netted us two gliders of quite positive potential. 

As a final lecture from Don about chocolate being very tasty (he does tend to state the obvious...) reminded some that solids of cocoa are occasionally a useful passport on completion of the return leg, it was time to depart before the shops closed, and to register our new acquisitions with the CAA

Martin Cropper

DGS News - Saturday 23rd June 2013

Forecast for strong gusty winds, low cloud and rain. Sounds like a summer day then.

The early drizzle and low cloud kept the gliders in the hanger and the assembled members busied themselves with the myriad of tasks in and around the site. A hardy group fitted a new set of cables to the ML winch. The last set had definitely lasted well thanks to the care taken by tow out drivers and winch drivers alike.

In the club house, Don was supervising the training efforts with various briefings and use of the simulator.

In the hangar, apart from looking at the “new” K7m , the work on the Pirat continues. All tasks are now complete with the exception of some minor plumbing work for the instruments. So it should be ready for test flying soon prior to re-joining the club fleet.
Picking up the old cables ( in the rain? )
 After lunch the cloud had lifted a little, so K13 out and off to the launch point. Today BI instructor Sean Parramore did some site appreciation flights so that he can help out on the instructor rota. Junior Peter Clifford and trainee pilot Jerry Wellington both took some flights with Don.

Is the winch too powerful? No,  just another field landing
With the wind 240 at 30 knots at flying heights another flight in the “Dartmoor Ridges” project seemed to be in order. Cox Tor was working well but the return trip was always going to be the main event. The plan was to push back to the airfield and, if they fell below the glideslope, just to drop back to Cox Tor to soar up and try again. Good plan except that a line of heavy rain was approaching rapidly and would have enveloped them if they had turned back to Cox Tor, leaving the only option a field landing in the large field on the south side of the airfield. More derigging and rigging practice then.

Collection the K13 from it's field

We got the very best out of the day.


DGS News–Wednesday 19th June 2013

Today provided a welcome break in the weather, with sunshine, thermals, shorts, sandals and the inevitable crosswind challenging the skills of winch drivers and pilots alike; many of the latter taking the opportunity to use the stub runway.

We are once again grateful to the early birds who responded to yesterday's rallying call via the Members' Forum yesterday urging everyone to get the kit and field ready early. This set us on the road to achieving 35 launches - which could have been more had there not been a few minor operational glitches. However, with Steve Lewis and Colin Boyd in particular taking time out between flights to focus on launch point efficiency, not too much time was lost and the day proceeded safely and enjoyably. A happy event which occurred mid-morning was the arrival of a delivery of a stock of new winch cable, which - provided we treat it carefully - should help to reduce cable breaks and improve our launch rate.

Early morning at DGS. Driving the sheep into the top field
Weather-wise, after a grey start with low cloud, the sun appeared and some healthy cumulus clouds started to develop, enabling Ged get to the first trial lesson underway and me to help members at the top of the training list to select, sometimes lose, and then regain and use, embryonic thermals. Mike Gadd set off early in the Open Cirrus with South Molton in his sights, but then a wedge of sea air carved its way south from Bideford Bay, leaving cumulus both to the east and west of us, but clear and 'dying' air over the field. Mike scampered back to base, while the rest of us lamented what looked like becoming an early end to our soaring ambitions.

While Ged and Steve Lewis took over the back seat of the K13 (not together of course!), as an act of faith, I ventured into the blue in the Zugvogel, only to discovered that soaring conditions were recycling, eventually resulting in several of us having decent local soaring flights in what became strong and turbulent thermals.

John Bolt.  80 years young and a re-solo.
Today we celebrated a number of 'firsts', including John Bolt's return to solo flight (in the Zug) after a long layoff and his 80th birthday last week; our resident TV personality Jeff Craggs' return to the air after his exploration of the countryside in the Bocian a couple of weeks ago, and Scratch Hitchen's maiden opportunity to exercise his 'family and friends' privileges from the back seat of the K13.

Then, as usual, several newcomers to our sport experienced their first glider flights by taking trial lessons. Today's 'VIP visitors' were Simon Lindfiled, Adrian Pike and  David Fillbrook.

Simon Lindfield
Adrian Fox
David Fillbrook
As the day drew to the close, there was an underlying 'buzz' concerning tomorrow's marathon road trip to Neath, in Wales, by a small team of our more dedicated members to collect the latest additions to our fleet, a K7M and a K8. It's going to be a long journey - and a long day. We wish everyone involved a safe journey - and thank them for their efforts on behalf of their fellow members.

Bob Pirie

DGS News–Sunday 13th June 2013 Cows and Cream Cakes

Grey and gloomy over the A30 turned to grey and drizzle over the A386 after Sourton, so it was no surprise to see Brentor Church shrouded in misty rain; not a gliding day for the faint hearted, or as it turned out, a gliding day at all.

But it is for this weather that the DGS Sunday Sizzler was created; this week, Lincolnshire sausages with black pudding, bacon, beans, freshly laid duck eggs, and home-baked chilli bread fried in goose fat, washed down with mugs of hot tea. A convivial and leisurely feast, which gave CFI Puttock plenty of time to reflect on todays chores and briefings.

First up, Dave Parker and the Bronze exam, always best sprung on an unsuspecting someone after a hearty meal, so with dishes washed and stowed, Dave was sat with Sunday Papers he hadn't been expecting.
Which left Don free to deliver an impromptu briefing on meteorology using his newly acquired PPL biased CD-Roms; computer based pilot training which is interactive, informative and fun. This flowed seamlessly into briefing number 2; an in depth analysis of one of Don's flights yesterday to Cox's Tor, examining the likely air flows and thermal activity along the Eastern edge of Dartmoor in a moderately strong Westerly; all part of the 'opening up' of the Dartmoor ridge for soaring; Brentor to Cox's Tor, along the ridge to Sourton, back to Brentor, with 'get out of jail' fields plotted along the way; an exciting and tantalising prospect.

With Don's enthusiasm, determination, and current meticulous planning, this could be likely as a training cross country route in the near future.

One of our Caledonian neighbours
The clubhouse activity was obviously much too intriguing for one of our neighbours who was seen sauntering through the trailer park towards the hut; Hamish the wandering Highland heifer looked to be joining us for lunch, but was headed off, and lunch was postponed for an hour or two while he was returned to his bovine mates, and the perimeter fencing inspected, and strengthened courtesy of Colin Boyd.

And that left just enough time to run through Dave's completed Bronze Exam - narrowly  failed just one section - and have a final Puttock briefing on 'speed to fly' and gliding an energy line, over home made Victoria Sponge and home made scones laden with clotted cream and strawberry jam. Looking at photograph of the cream tea in progress, the geezer in the red jumper seems very 'hands on'........wonder who that could be?

I wonder which CFI this is?

All in all, and on more than one level, a mouth watering day.

Roger Applebloom

DGS News–Saturday 15th June 2013

Low cloud, mist, drizzle and increasingly strong winds seemed to suggest a no flying day, but this was to change.

Danger - Men at Work
 A willing group continued the work on the Pirat and by the end of the day the aircraft was nearly finished. It had been assembled ready for measuring the control deflections, fitting the canopy, instrument panel and paint the newly fitted rudder. One more good day may well see it finished.

By midday the conditions looked at bit more like it.
By midday, the weather had improved to the point that those pilots that wanted to could at least get a flight in the K13 with Don, too windy for solo machines really.

Along Cox Tor
Soaring the bowl at Standon Hill
 After playing in the locally buoyant conditions, the decision was made to continue the “Dartmoor Ridges” project. Dene Hitchen and David Parker both flew with Don crossing the valley 3 miles down wind to soar Cox Tor, jump across the gap to soar the bowl at Standon Hill where lift was an astonishing 8 knots, and to soar back to the airfield. At flying heights the WSW wind was gusting over 30 knots.

Soaring Cox Tor
 Climbing at 600 feet per minute at 1600 feet QFE ( 2400 feet Above sea level )
This is an important step in the project. The link from Cox Tor to Standon Hill will unlock the the rest of the ridges to allow flights north to Meldon Reservoir via Brat Tor, Great Links Tor and Corn Ridge.

Don's "concentration face" would scare young children 
A lot achieved on the most unlikely day.


DGS News – Wednesday 12th June 2013

Today's weather arrived exactly as forecast, with low cloud and increasingly heavy rain, so our first call was to the club's trial lesson administrator, Mike Keller, so that he could phone his customers and deter them from making a wasted journey and, of course, get them booked in for another day. .

After all the recent good weather and flying activity, the decision to scrub today's flying programme was made with great regret. However, with 10  members present, here was a great opportunity invest some time in carrying out maintenance of the airfield, the gliders and the ground equipment ready for the coming weekend.

How many glider pilots does it take to DI a Dyson?
Under the watchful eye of  'Supervisory Gopher' John Bolt (his words, not mine!), Steve Lewis and Colin Boyd made great inroads with some of the tasks that have been delaying the maiden flight of the 'revived' Pirat single-seater. While Alan Holland and Dave Bourchier set about re-furbishing the K-13's main wheel, I carried out routine cleaning and maintenance of both that glider and its sister ship, the Zugvogel, after which the three of us succeeded in getting the wheel and wheel brake installed and working.

Meanwhile Roger White continued to work on our quad bikes, then ended the day tackling some welding on the cable retrieve trailer.

Most of us in the hangar were able to avoid the worst of the weather, but Robin Wilson, Scratch Hitchen and David Rippon spent a good part of the day getting soaked, yet still managed to keep a smile on their faces. First of all, having checked the forecast wind direction for this coming weekend, David and Robin changed ends with the winch and launch control caravan, in order to facilitate an early start on Saturday morning. Then Scratch and Robin got stuck in to earth moving, and with pickaxe, shovel and small trailer, managed to transfer the heap of road planings from beside the clubhouse to some potentially glider- and vehicle-damaging holes on the north side of the airfield centre track.

In response to a signal from our Ground Manager, Phil the Farmer, that the airfield needed cutting, David Rippon discovered that the main drive belt on the big agricultural mower was broken, so he and John Bolt embarked on a shopping expedition to an agricultural engineering company in Launceston.

The result of spending the day in the slightly "damp" tractor seat
It's a shame no one got to fly - especially our trial lesson and one day course visitors - but at least the kit and the airfield are in good shape for when the weather does improve; hopefully this weekend.

Bob Pirie

DGS News - Sunday 9th June 2013

The day dawned bright and the yesterday's wind had abated. Good job too with 5 Trial Lessons booked in plus a growing number of keen trainees on the Flying List.  And with only one two seater available the pressure was on - to get the Sunday Soarers' hearty breakfast tucked away - and K-13 DMX up to the launch point asap. 

DGS from the SW
Fortunately, Robin Wilson had made a special effort to arrive early to kick things off and Heather and Barry Green then arrived to make a winch/retrieve crew: by 0930 we were away with Dave Parker and Don making the first flight.  A little under 9 hours later DMX came to rest having made no less than 22 flights, all but one with Don in the back seat, for a total of 3 hours 40 minutes flying time.

We welcomed Peter Clifford who, booked in for a One Day Course, thankfully agreed to convert it into 3 months membership, which made room for the other Trial Lessons - plus those who turned up on spec.  In all we flew 8 Trial Lessons, (with some students receiving more than one flight), plus 4 club trainees, including new junior member Matthew May, who made the group up to four of those who will be looking for solo on their 15th birthdays. 

Air Ex candidate Dawn Cook
Andrew Millington
David Applin
In the sky the conditions were weak/strong depending on your time of launch/where you went: Phil Hardwick took the concrete swan to cloudbase at 3,500ft for 2 hours plus, whilst Allan Holland managed almost 90 minutes in the Zugvogel. 

Convergence as the sea air passed through at around 3.30pm
Roger Appleboom, Darren Wills and new owner Dave Parker made up the K-6 club, Don managing to find time between punters to take the finely fettled FTB, David's new K6, into the sky for an 11 minute frolic (test flight)  involving stalls, spins and a loop. 

Among the trial lesson students of Dawn Cook, Sarah Stevens, Fed Williams, David Applin and Andrew Millington was one Maurice Smith, who declared with delight that gliding was "Cheaper than 18 holes at Hurdwick Golf Club!" Yes, Maurice, and hopefully our photo shows you why it is much, much, more enjoyable...

One of today's Trial
Lesson Students, Maurice Smith was heard to say: '£6.50 a launch? That's
cheaper that 18 holes at Hurdwick Gold Course!'  And this is why it's more

Martin Cropper

DGS News - Saturday 8th June 2013

Blue sky, warm, strong NE wind, high pressure possible limited local soaring.

Pitch inspection by CFI Don
 Today was designated as an Instructor Training day, so ab-initio flying was limited today.The instructors  spent the morning in a huddle discussing the future changes in ratings etc. and muttering phrases that seemed to contain the word “bloggs” very frequently.After a very nice lunch provided by club Secretary Sandra, the instructors  spent most of the afternoon flying with each other in seemingly endless practice flights.

Steve & Martin in deep conversation
David Jesty and Ged Nevisky
Meanwhile, Bob Pirie was getting some flying in his ASW20, in fact he had the longest flight of the day at 55 minutes. Mike Jardine made an appearance in his Astir to keep Bob honest.

New member Tony Dean in conversation with Don
We welcomed a new club member Tony Dean, an ex ATC cat 3 instructor who began his conversion to sport gliding with CFI Don Puttock. Also visiting today was Air Experience candidate Andrew Trevarton who was spoiled for choice of instructors to fly with.

Visitor Andrew Trevarton enjoyed a 20 minute soaring flight with David
While all the flying fun was taking place the committee held 2 separate meetings, one in the morning a one later in the evening. Now that’s dedication.


DGS News – Wednesday 5th June 2013

First of all, a big thank you to everyone who responded to the call via the Forum and turned up earlier than usual today intent on having fun while at the same time supporting the club; especially those real early birds who got the kit out. Undeterred by temporarily limited glider availability - and a hiccup getting the tractor started - you 'made it happen' not only for yourselves, but for our trial lesson and one-day course candidates, and for several 'family and friends' visitors as well.

It was hard work for everyone, but well worth it. I believe all those who wanted to fly actually flew, enjoying a full day of sunshine, soaring and big smiles. (All that was missing was the sangria!).

Nick Borst-Smith enjoyed some soaring in today's rough thermals.
 With the wind from the east, there were strong (but quite rough) thermals for most of the day, as well as hints of wave contributing to the roughness. Later on, as the thermals receded, more reliable low level wave kicked in.

One of today's visitors was Thomas Andrews - a fireman from Melbourne
Plenty of respectable local soaring flights were achieved by both club and privately-owned gliders - as well as some  less successful attempts. Early on the turning point 'Chicklade' was mentioned - but  this was soon eclipsed by more modest horizons. Frankly, I was too busy to note all the names and flight times of the soarers, as well as all those who helped to run the operation 'above and beyond the call'.  But you know who you are, and I congratulate and thank you for delivering a safe and enjoyable day's gliding. Training highlights included Martin Broadway and David Rippon checked out and back on the Zugvogel after absences from the club, and John Bolt cleared for re-solo whenever the mood takes him.

Stephenie Jouin is Andrew Beaumont's daughter in law to be.
As ever, there have to be one or two 'special mentions'. First of all, thanks to Ged Nevisky, for entertaining several 'family and friends' visitors in the comfort of his syndicate's Twin Astir (which freed up the K13 for a very full days of training;. and secondly Roy Young. Roy appeared a week ago clutching a trial lesson voucher. He upgraded his voucher to a one day course, which he had hoped to undertake today, but in view of the limited two-seater availability, he took just one flight before stepping aside to letter others fly. See you
next week, Roy.

Bob Pirie

DGS News – Sunday 2nd June 2013

After yesterday's wind it was a relief to discover on arrival at the airfield that the wind had moderated. Still almost 90 degrees across the runway but that reductions in strength and few degrees further west at least allowed us to operate.  

Which was just as well as with an on-line calendar chock full of trial lesson bookings and the solo membership behaving like sharks with blood in the water there was a lot to do.  With David Jesty taking charge of club trainees Jerry Wellington and Jeff Cragg, and two K-6s looking to make the most of the expected thermals, it fell to me to fly with an extremely varied flock of trial students.
Tony Dean & Martin Cropper in the Bocian with Thomas Dean standing by
 For instance number 1 was Tony Dean, with in excess of 1,000 launches courtesy of the Air Cadets, seeking to transfer and accredit his experience into BGA recognisable terms, but who hadn't flown since 2005. Tony was accompanied by son Thomas, who looks likely to go the powered route at Bodmin (he's a city investor so days spent at Brentor don't quite fit into his busy agenda).

Colin Boyd briefing Junior member Andrew Swann on cable attachment.
Number 2 trial lesson was Richard Bennett, a joiner from Plymouth who I managed to soar with to 1200ft whilst Number 3 was twelve year old Andrew Swann who already has 3 flights with us and who I managed to get to cloudbase and spend 25 minutes taking him through primary and secondary effects of the controls.  Andrew was closely followed by James McInnes-Slece, also 12 and who has the benefit of flying in his Dad's Rallye.  Both Andrew and James will be occasional visitors with us until they can properly start down the road to solo at 15 and on to licence.

Club Secretary Sandra Buttery had a one hour very useful instructional soaring flight with David Jesty, reaching a height of 3,200 ft  and a few stalls and spins thrown in for good measure she took over the winch driving from Nigel Williamson for the afternoon into the evening.

Meanwhile, as clouds formed, over developed and recycled, returning glider pilot Roger Appleboom was doing his level best to rustle up some lift, which, upon arrival of returning cricket spectator Robin Wilson made use of to take K-6 FUB to 3,600ft in over half an hour, and the pass the what little was left to Colin Boyd, who was only able to manage the odd couple of 10 minute flights.  

Sam Tallwin
Marie Crosby
As the afternoon progressed I flew with Sam Tallwin, for whom gliding made a fitting big tick on his 'bucket list' of life, whilst David flew with Marie Crosby.  Later still Dawn Philpott and her friend Rebecca from the Control Room at Crownhill Police Station were able to fly for 20 and 21 minutes respectively in the two-seaters.  With final flights for Jerry Wellington in the K-13 and Tony Dean and Jeff Cragg in the Bocian, it was a busy and demanding day

Dawn Philpott

Martin Cropper