written by Paul R. Jorgenson - Copyright 2001-2011

The BG 12/16 Sailplane - N7438 - More Flying

by Paul R. Jorgenson - KE7HR

The flying has continued to be fun with the old yellow sailplane, N7438. A few minor problems have been taken care of along the way and some changes that the builder would have made if he had flown the machine more.

The most obvious part changed was the flap detent quadrant. The builder had made it with 'shark teeth' that pointed aft. This made the flaps lock into the multiple detents but without the air load on the flaps (on the ground) the flaps always wanted to assume the full flaps position. I made a new quadrant with only three detents - one for flaps up, one for takeoff flaps, and one for full flaps. The control floats on the quadrant in all of the in between positions and works similar to a spoiler control that other sailplanes have.

The Phase 1 Experimental hours have now been flown. The glider demonstrates that it is controllable in all of its normal maneuvers and has no really bad habits. This now means that the glider can be flown anywhere in the USA and not just a 25 mile radius of the home gliderport.

I was able to take a few pictures with a digital camera (big deal back then...) on a recent flight.

The cockpit view. The instruments show me at 7000 feet MSL (5400 above ground), at 50 knots airspeed, climbing at 3 knots (about 300 feet per minute), and the yaw string is straight. Downtown Phoenix is way in the background, about 30 miles away.

This is the view out past the left wing, looking east. The Pleasant Valley airport is visible, home of Turf Soaring School and N7438.

This is a little better view of the gliderport, looking southwest. All four runways are visible. My glider parked over on the right side of the runways, near mid-field.

I have been using the GPS to track my flights. The track files from the GPS along with a computer program (FlexGPS) that allows scanned charts to be displayed with other data, allows me to be able analyze where I was. The tight squiggles show where I was turning and climbing in thermals. The large circles or arcs I drew on the map before scanning and are range marks from the various airports.

Below are two 2001 flights. The first was done on May 6, 2001 and was 1 hour 52 minutes.
The second was flown on May 10, 2001 and was 2 hours 43 minutes.

The old ship still draws a crowd when it comes out of the trailer. Since there are only five BG 12/16 sailplanes registered with the FAA, no one has seen one before. I spoke with another 12/16 builer/owner recently and he has not flown his yet. I thought MINE was the low time ship with 2:45 total time when I got it - his is yet to be christened. N7438 now has about 15 hours total time and is almost ready for some cross country flying.

Created 11 May 2001.
Updated 18 November 2011
Copyright 2001-2011 by Paul R. Jorgenson

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