2 students Kevin and Ryan. Just another typical first PPG course day. We have completed the ground school, student pilot permit was issued – we even had time to get the engines out, get them started and practice running under power. Even though it was super windy outside we also managed to learn how to untangle lines put the training harness on and hook up for forward and reverse inflation inside of my climbing gym. Good but very long day. Did not finish till 8 PM. Very tired.
This PPG course was supposed to start on Saturday May 14 but the forecast for both Saturday and Sunday called for very high winds with some possible rain too. The first day of the course is mostly indoor and we have other stuff to do if winds are too high for kiting so iyt does not matter what the weather is like first day. Since forecast for Sunday was bad too we decided to skip Saturday and start this course on Sunday. No reason to start Sat, do all the indoor stuff and then sit in hotel room all Sunday with nothing to do.
Off the runway 06 then fly over Niagara Falls then to Fort Erie, turn right go to Port Colborn then follow Welland canal back. Busy on the approach, wanted to join right base for 06 but was told by tower to turn left and join long final for 06 to give two other aircraft time to land. Did one touch and go then full stop. That flight had two smoothest landings ever. Its nice to hear those wheels squeak…
Govindan has managed his first solo and one more flight later. Great conditions, nice and calm with perfect light breeze not like when Jason and Kevin flew their first solos.
The take offs vere perfect. Landings not as good. First landing was a bit of a belly slide as Govindan did not manage to maintain into the wind direction and on the second he was too slow to turn back and he turtled. In either case no damage to gear which is good.
Congrats Govindan on your first ever solo flight!
Started at 3 pm with brush up on ground handling. By 4:30 it was flyable. Jason took off into nice air and had wonderful flight. next was Kevin who managed one of the craziest take off I have ever seen. It did work at the end. Bobby, who started in the fall, also did a nice flight.
Then it went down hill from there. Jason had small stuble but being big guy and the Miniplane being very light but as stron as RS Ultra frames cracked. We tried the other miniplane that was giving us hard time yesterday but it was still acting up. We then tried to make one functioning paramotor out of the two but did not have enough time to get it done. Bobby flew second flight but when he landed we have noticed that one of his A lines was broken. The paraglider was constantly moving in the air which make him nauseated and that was the end of his flying even though we have replaced the A line. Kevin did another flight – much better the last and then one more.
After short break he has tried again but this time his take off was very unstabilized and he tripped and chipped his prop. Bummer – it was nice day to fly.
Students were not ready to fly yet this morning so there was no reason to get up too early. We decided for 10 am start and worked on kiting. By 1 pm both Kevin and Jason were very proficient even with motors on their back. Govindan is participating on weekends only and will be back for more this Sat and Sun. Wind started to gust up so we took 2 hr lunch and talked pre solo prep. When we came back wind was still gusting so we waited and waited. At one point we used my very small training paragliders – fun to fine tune kiting with such agile and fast gliders.
Finally by 6:30 wind has decreased to an acceptable level. Jason took off first, but could not get into the seat. It is harder then in simulator so I see it often. He flew around a bit and then I sat him down for landing.
Kevin did his first solo as well. He did get seated, flew well and made great landing. Actually both had very controlled take offs and also landed on their feet which is unusual for first time landing. It was 2 short flight as wind was at 20 km/h which is our max. Then Jason was up to go again. Nice take off, got seated, trimmed the glider but by now was on very fast down wind and ended up about 1/2 mile from the field. He started to inch his way back but it was very slow go and eventually his engine started to lose power. He had no choice but to do forced landing in neighbouring field. No problem, we got him, just picked big mud puddle to land in in otherwise wide open field. Ha ha. I suspect that engine slowly overheated as we were using smaller then usual gliders because of the stronger wind. That was it, congrats on first solo pilots Jason and Kevin. And…well done Jason on successful management of forced unguided landing.
Absolutely stunning day at the field. We got summer and perfect wind. Started at 10 am with reverse handling and ground handled till 1 pm. Wind started to get too inconsistent so we too hour break for lunch. Then we went over the motors, helmets, radion comm and proper way to run with paramotor. Once this was done we continued with kiting. Jason and Kevin almost got it and are now kiting with motors on the back. Govindan is slightly slower but even he is getting it under great control. Great day.
I got Kevin, Govindan and Jason in this PPG course. Kevin asked not to be put on web so there will be no pics of him.
Ground school went very well, I had all the forms pre filled with student’s personal information so that saved us a lot of time. I also had all the simulators and motors fully assembled so we were able to manage everything in very good time.
Giving the beautiful conditions at the field with the right amount of wind it was good that ground school was finished by 230. That gave us solid five hours at the field. We started with usual. Learning about the wind. Learning about the field. Learning how to get glider out of the bag nd how to put on training harness on. Unpack paraglider and hook it up for reverse inflation.
Then it was ground handling four hours on. Everybody’s doing well but there is no champion yet. This is the most frustrating part but It’s also the hardest part. We finished at 8 PM. Very long day, that was 12 hours of work with the rest. I do earn my money. Feeling a little stiff going to bed.
We will resume today at 10 AM and plan to put full day of work in.