The 2010 Competition Season has Started

This past Thursday, 5/13/2010 we arrived at Greenwood Lake airport for the first annual Jersey Skylands Aerobatic Contest. The flight over was uneventful and beautiful. A CAVU day for sure. It was great to see everyone after the winter break and we were all excited to kick the season off in the North East. Pictures from the contest…

I was able to get in two practice sessions Thursday. I had practiced the known a few times a couple weeks prior and the flights seemed to go well and I had another practice scheduled for Friday before the contest started so I decided to work my Free sequence. The two runs Thursday went pretty well. There were definite things I needed to work on. The main thing was to relax in the box.

It sounds simple, but it is not something that is readily on your mind, especially when you are at 3500 feet in the air, pushing over to a 45 degree line, now rocketing toward the ground at 210 MPH, adrenalin pumps at max capacity, and heart racing. The excitement level is truly off the charts in a great way. One of the biggest aspects of this sport is the mental side. It is one thing to; put aside all the obvious thoughts of peril and lost friends throughout the years, to amass a skill set where you are capable of flying competitively, learn and train to control your aircraft at the razors edge etc. But it is a completely different discipline to control your body and mind, physiologically, under competition circumstances, especially diving into the box in front of the judges line. So by the end of Thursday I was reminded to take deep breaths diving into the box, between figures and to take my time so the sequence presents nicely and not rushed.

Thursday night started after a great day of flying and kibitzing. The weather Friday morning was sure to be rainy and un-flyable till at least noontime, so we all planned on a late morning start which meant a late night! Sleeping off a well earned hang over Friday morning we headed out to the airport around noon under clearing skies, planning on a 1:00 briefing. Unfortunately this meant no practice and flying the “Known” cold…

When we arrived at the airport, the scene was that of a busy ant hill. Everyone was scurrying around getting ready to kick off the contest. Organizers feverishly finishing the last details, competitors getting themselves and their mounts readied. Some were even getting in a practice flight. So I cornered the starter, the guy responsible for getting people off the ground and into the box in a safe and orderly manner, and asked if there was any time left for me to take a 10 min slot. Unfortunately there were 5 guys ahead of me and the pilot brief was planned to start in 30 mins… To make long story short, for various reasons they pushed the brief off about 45 mins which allowed me to get a practice in. Perfect, just what I needed… Or was it… to be con’t…


4 Responses to “The 2010 Competition Season has Started”

  1. HELLO!! I am looking to commence my own S1-11b build withing the next two years as my funds would allow (graduating college=no cash!) My head is absolutely spinning trying to figure out where to begin…imagine how it would spin after I’ve built the thing!! I would very much appreciate a response with some information as to where I should begin (fuselage? wings? empanage?…) and any resources that would be helpful such as reputable parts suppliers, knowledgeable persons etc…please please throw me a rope here! and thanks a million!

    • Hello Reuben,

      It is a great undertaking and a lot of fun. Make sure you have the right tools and people you will need. If I have learned one thing it is the right tool for the job is essential. For the wood working you need a good table saw, router and band saw. A good sharp plane to shape the spars, an nice set of sharp drill bits, etc.

      I would start with what your better at, if it is wood, start with the wings. If it is metal start with the fuselage. If you have the budget I would definitely recommend the Cartesian Tube kit. It is worth the time and money. Not to mention the quality of fit and welds. If you are going to pay someone to weld it, then definitely get the tube kit.

      Start by going over the plans, over and over. Check the callouts and make parts list etc. If you have anyone that has built one of these before any tube and fabric plane, try to get them involved.

      Good luck and if you questions don’t be afraid to ask. And join the Biplane Forum. See my links. A great resource for help and to get answers to questions.

      • Thank you for getting back to me…you are the first to display such courtesy! I am curious as to how complete the Aviat plans are. I am quite comfortable with the design and concept of building this aircraft but I often find myself wondering how I would begin to go about actually building it. For example, I plan to start with the wings because I have more experience with wood than steel. Having never built an airplane before I am concerned that I lack the necessary knowledge to apply SAFE methods of production of parts. Is there a resource that you have found to be helpful with this aspect of my situation? I do have a friend at a local airport that owns a maintenance facility and there is a local EAA chapter, but they are most experienced in aluminum construction. Again, I am sorry to bombard you with questions but I figure it’s best to ask when in doubt.

  2. Aviat plans are great, very complete, very well done. If you stick to them you will have no problem building a safe airplane. Other than that, know your materials and ask questions.

    If you have not already, hit the Biplane Forum – The ultimate source for builder questions.

    Order your plans, much of your getting started questions will be answered and you’ll have a whole bunch of new ones. 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: