Weather: reeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaal coooooolish, breeeeeezy
Pilots: Al Bleyenberg, Al Roberts, Jim Bates, Lonnie Hagadorn, Randall Hendrix
AND! an extremely(not fashionably) late Billy West
On the weirdo meter scale, today was a definite 8.5.
I got there around 9, just because. Spent some time doing yard work.
Around 10, still no one, so I decided to head home, too cool, too windy. Just before getting
into the car, Al Roberts shows up and starts to impart his “wisdom” about “stuff”, always
Jim Bates pulls in and starts to unload his SUV. Jim has brought his propane heater.
One thing led to another and we started “jury rigging” a tarp on the right side of the hangar.
Amazing was cutting off the wind and a little heat will do to keep the “ole bones” warm.
The only thing we didn’t have was cheese and crackers and peanuts in the shell.
Jim starts out with his 3D Wargo. He’s done some “tweaking” and flies it like a champ.
Lonnie is next to grace us with his presence. His first choice is a PRISTINE, NEW, BRAND
NEW LEATHER SMELLING INTERIOR, Parkzone T-28. You could eat off this thing. Even the lime
green markings on the underside of the wings, looks tasty. With up and down, more than
the “advertised” 6mph winds, Lonnie puts on a great show.
As usual, I have a “fixer upper” Eflite Pawnee with me. Jim graciously agrees to re-maiden
it for me. The next 20 minutes weren’t pretty. Jim had to wrestle this thing back to the
ground after it got airborne. Four plane tweaks later, it flies relatively “normal”. Time to
retire that for the day. Jim was breathing easier too.
It’s 11 ish and I’m ready to head to the house. Get a text message from Billy, he’s on
his way. Oh, be still my beating heart!!! Just to keep him from “crying”, I hang around. Don’t
read anything “weird” into that.
Lonnie’s video speaks volumes about what Billy started with. A Cessna 182. HO HUM
BUT!, he’s installed a 3” speaker in the underside of the fuselage, and obviously a sound
system on the inside. This thing sounds like the real thing. Looking at the video, you can’t tell
NEXT up is his Japanese version of the German WW2 Komet. It’s the one he crashed a few
weeks back when no one was there to witness. The only reason he put it back together is that
I had found the lost “drop off” landing gear.
Five feet of runway takeoff and it’s airborne. Keep your eyes on the “bouncing ball”. This
is one SPEEDY little sucker. It’s so fast (how fast is it) that Lonnie can’t keep track of it
videoing. Billy slows it down for a low speed pass for Lonnie to video. Low speed pass
is a medium speed pass for the rest of us. Otherwise, it would be road kill.
Many verticle climbs, rolls, loops later, comes in for a belly landing. He’s happy, we’re
NEXT!. a 15” wingspan Osprey. Looks funny on the ground, looks funnier flying. Takes off
vertical and a flick of the switch, the motors go horizontal and it’s a normal plane.
NEXT! Collecting dust in his hangar is a Tri-copter. Same as a quad, but obviously minus one
motor. He tells us he had it flying in his back yard last night. So today is just a
show and tell. Put it on the runway, spool it up, it tilts to the left, one prop hits the runway
and it a Bi copter. The servo gears on the “turner thing” are stripped. BUMMER!
Never fear, Billy has more.
From the million mile and hour Komet, and his Flite test Canard, he brings out a
LAZY BEE. Not judging Billie’s personality, but, it’s pink and light blue. Hmmmmm.
Any one who has seen a Bee in action knows the rest. It flits, it flies, it goes up, does
verticals, loops, everything but a roll. But, who cares, they are still fun to see fly.
The One o’clock bell strikes and Lonnie and Jim exit. I started to follow, but decided
to I-phone the Cessna for myself.
On the first flight, a bit of a hard landing, had “hurt” the nose gear. Billy shrugged
his shoulders, took off anyway. EXEPT! The nose gear didn’t co-operate. Flight
scrubbed. My turn to go home. Left Billy , ALL ALONE, BY HIM SELF, OUT IN A LONELY