Any sailplane pilots here

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by GotGlock1917, Jul 20, 2005.

  1. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

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    Just curious.

    I got my private back in the 70's and flew for a few years.
    I had to quit for financial reasons. It is a long story involving a wrecked sailplane and bad insurance.

    After a 30 year hiatus, I'm looking to buy a new sailplane and start again. I'm stoked. Even better, my wife is stoked as well.

    I don't have any good photos of my old Blanik L13 but this is a Googled pic for representative purposes. I'm looking for another Blanik. Wish us luck in our search.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    John
     
  2. Timotheous46

    Timotheous46

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    John,

    I’m not a sailplane pilot, yet. I am very interested in the possibility though.

    I’ve flown many fixed wing planes and have owned a Piper tri-pacer, a Cessna 172 and currently we own a C-182.

    Is the learning curve from engine power to gravity power very challenging? In my area there is no probability of tows or winch launches so I would need a self launching sailplane. I would appreciate any replies from anyone.

    I hope you can get back into the air soon. It’s probably the greatest legal rush you can get.

    Tim
     

  3. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

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    Tim,

    I started with soaring first because I was too young for a power student license. From what I've seen, transitioning from power to glider is easy. There are several places in Michigan to soar if you want to check them out.
    Use this link at the Soaring Society of America to look at the interactive map. There might be one close to you.
    Where to fly

    There are numerous self launching gliders around but they seem kind of pricey to me.

    Have fun,
    John
     
  4. Timotheous46

    Timotheous46

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    John

    Thanks for the information.

    There is flight instruction about 2 hours from here and I intend to contact them.

    Tim
     
  5. TenMillimeter

    TenMillimeter

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    I used to be, back in the 80's. Soloed at 14. On my 16th b'day, I got my drivers and motorcycle licenses on Friday, then the next day drove up to TN and took my Private Pilot Sailplane checkride, after previously passing my written test. What a weekend!

    I learned in a Schweizer 2-33, then went on to fly 1-26's, and a Schleiker Ka-8. Shhhh....Don't tell anyone, but I looped and did a tailslide in that wood/fabric 60's vintage Ka-8. My dad bought a Concept 70, which I put a lot of cross-country time in. I got my SSA Gold Altitude badge at 19 above Mt. Mitchell, NC, at 19,000 feet, and my Gold Distance badge flying 232 miles from GA, into AL and back. I had 114 logged hours when I got out of the sport when I married at 21. I've been up a few times since, with my dad, and he let me do the whole flight - aerotow to landing. It was just like riding a bike. He currently owns an ASW-20.

    Sometimes I think about getting back in the sport, but it's become very expensive and I have too many other hobbies.
     
  6. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

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    Tim,

    Glad to hear it. As I said, it is an easy transition from power to sailplane. And, it will make you a better, smoother pilot. You'll have a blast.


    JohnG27,

    Congrats on all that. That is a lot of accomplishment. I only flew from age 13 going on 14 to age 16. My best altitude gain is 7500 feet and longest time is 4 1/2 hours. Nothing to brag about.

    I was just getting started good when a newly licensed pilot crashed my Blanik in an off-field landing. The insurance didn't cover it. After the repairs, the FAA wouldn't approve a wing repair and it had to be done again. I was trading glider time for power instruction. With plane payments, insurance payments, hangar rent, two big repair bills to pay, annual inspection due and in debt to my power instructor, I was screwed. I had to sell my Blanik to pay off my debts.

    Shortly after that I graduated high school and joined the Navy and put my flying days behind me. 6 years later there was no place around me to fly a sailplane. 30 years goes by in a hurry but now there are two places I can get a tow and I'm looking forward to starting again.

    Shopping is tough. There are a lot of good 1 seat planes out there that are affordable. Finding a good two seater with good performance is not as easy. My wife is also interested in taking instruction and I enjoy giving rides. A Grob Twin Astir or ASK-21 would be nice, but expensive. Oh well, we'll see what happens.

    Again, congrats on you accomplishments. You need to get back into it.

    John
     
  7. glockatlanta

    glockatlanta

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    It's good to hear you're getting back into soaring.
    I was forced to sell my Libelle a couple of years ago and am still having withdrawl pains. :(

    Enjoy yourself and fly safely!

    Mike
     
  8. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

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    Oddly enough, I've decided against a 2 seater and the H201 Libelle in on my short list. It'll be nice if I can work all this out. I just wish I didn't have to drive 2+ hours to the gliderport.

    John
     
  9. glockatlanta

    glockatlanta

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    Yeah, but as you drive to the glider port you can take comfort in the fact that your Libelle goes together very easily and in no time flat!. Also, the 2 hour drive back will be like nothing as you think back on how you were able to stay up all afternoon in your Libelle on the lightest of thermals while everyone else was falling out of the sky! :)
     
  10. GotGlock1917

    GotGlock1917 Lifetime Member

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    Thanks. My reasoning as well.:) ;a
     
  11. TenMillimeter

    TenMillimeter

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    That's what I loved about flying our club's KA-8. There were many days I could stay up with just a hint of lift, when all the hot 'glass ships were back on the ground. I made several "saves" from well under 500 feet, when I found just 50 ft/min of lift. A fellow club member had a Libelle, and he could just about do the same.