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Phoenix 2000 thermaling

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Tony Kenny30/10/2017 09:41:07
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282 forum posts
62 photos

HI All,

My trusty Phoenix 2000 has to be my most robust and most flown model. Partly because she's such a forgiving bird and partly because I get such long flights from her in so many different kinds of weather and location.

But, I want more!.... poor girl!

Whilst my slope landings are improving, I've tried my hand at thermals and can't quite seem to catch them. I can often tell when the model lifts a wing, or rises up, and then turn downwind in the direction of the tipped wing, or, if I get lift, then downwind to try and keep in the thermal, maybe I'm turning too early in that case.

Sometime I seem to catch and keep level, but fail to rise.

Whilst I'm sure that most of the problem is my technique, I have a couple of question about my model and setup.

1. The wings have undergone numerous repairs with UHU Por and carbon rods. Not sure how much weight in total, but I suspect it's not an insignificant amount compared to the weight of the wings. I've also added vinyl, which is probably heavier than the repairs. Could I benefit from replacing the wings new?

2. I've been considering chopping the servo cables (and extension cables) to shorten about 10cm of each, so that's 40cm total cable and maybe 2 extension lugs/sockets. Would it make much difference.

3. Here's the one I really think might help, but only in the "theory" as I know it so far. As I enter a thermal, could I benefit from a tiny bit of down flap and aileron both side to slightly increase the lift of the airfoil? I've seen this on FliteTest with a DLG and wondered if this might apply to my heavier bird?

Thank in advance! Willing to try things out and report back!

Tony

Frank Skilbeck30/10/2017 14:55:59
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4448 forum posts
101 photos

1. Probably

2. I don't think this will save much weight

3. Yes, I do this on my Multiplex Heron, just a couple of mm (settings as per MPX manual)

The other thing you could do is to use the rudder to turn in the thermal keeping the wings more level.

I must admit I do cheat a bit as I have a vario onboard, but we have caught some great thermal from a bungee launch on our rudder-elevator Bird of Time glider (no vario), but that has a very low wing loading. Also thermal'd my scale gliders at aerotows, but being larger I'm often starting to thermal at 800ft where the thermals are usually much more developed.

Geoff Sleath30/10/2017 16:44:03
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3356 forum posts
272 photos
Posted by Frank Skilbeck on 30/10/2017 14:55:59:Also thermal'd my scale gliders at aerotows, but being larger I'm often starting to thermal at 800ft where the thermals are usually much more developed.

I have a vario on my Phoenix 2K and usually aim for 200 metres (650'?) altitude because I think that's the height specified in electric thermal soaring competitions. In fact I only do that when the visibility is really good because I simply can't see the model clearly enough when it's that high, even though I've painted the wing tips red . The thought of looking for even more lift from 800 feet horrifies me. I guess you must have Superman's telescopic vision I hit some thermal lift the last time I flew the P2K and when it got to 230 metres and still climbing I chickened out and speeded up to get into more vertically stable air.

I don't fly it all that often and after 20 minutes or so I get bored and lose height by doing a few inefficient aerobatic and land. I've never got anywhere near exhausting a 2200 mAh 3S battery.

Geoff

Frank Skilbeck30/10/2017 17:02:42
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4448 forum posts
101 photos
Posted by Geoff Sleath on 30/10/2017 16:44:03:
Posted by Frank Skilbeck on 30/10/2017 14:55:59:Also thermal'd my scale gliders at aerotows, but being larger I'm often starting to thermal at 800ft where the thermals are usually much more developed.

. The thought of looking for even more lift from 800 feet horrifies me. I guess you must have Superman's telescopic vision

No just 4m span vintage gliders wink, I have hit 500m in a thermal and at that point decided it was best to come down. With my Heron I have a motor cut off that kicks in at 140m.

john stones 130/10/2017 17:18:55
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10586 forum posts
1480 photos

A fair amount of knowledge and ability required to be good at thermalling, Buzzards etc and some pilots make it look easy, it isn't. I've found the occasional ones, but I get over excited n mess it up. face 1

Tony Kenny31/10/2017 09:55:22
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282 forum posts
62 photos

Thank you all for the advice.

I'll probably replace the wings and will certainly experiment with different flap set ups to see what works. Also, I'm I'm intending to thermal, maybe I'll fly on a 1300 instead of a 2200mAh, I'll get less time on throttle of course, but will benefit from lower weight.

Re the cables, I'll probably do that anyway, but more for convenience when connecting the wings rather than anything else.

Bruce Austin15/11/2018 17:42:33
242 forum posts
1 photos

Hi Tony, I realise this response is for last years query, but maybe you are still monitoring???

I fly the P2000 first version as well as the V2. My experience is that by moving the CoG rearwards, you might well have more chance of getting the lift.

I fly off a slope mainly, but there are some days with just a whisper of a breeze, and then the thermals are more stable. I can ease the CoG rearwards and the Phoenix can thermal reasonably well, during the summer.

Go with the Flow

Bruce

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