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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby Frank Colver » Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:05 am

Yes, check the videos of some of my landings at Dockweiler Beach, using "monster" sand wheels.

All but one of the hang gliders I've flown since 1971 have had wheels, mainly as a safety device. I usually landed on my feet but there were times that the wheels were used very effectively.

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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby Rick Masters » Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:49 am

I believe that different people have the right to prefer different techniques depending on what they think is safest for them

Wheels add a bit of safety under certain circumstances, particularly following pilot error.
But you don't see them used much by advanced pilots in competition or XC attempts because they add drag.
Even if someone invented "dragless wheels," I'd doubt I would have used them.
Looking back on my worst out-landings, the only one where wheels would have helped was whan I landed hard on an asphalt road during my intermediate phase.
Then it came to me, "Dirt is softer!"     :lol:     
I never landed on asphalt again.

However, Jim, one thing I never did was fly fast low to the ground. That is asking for trouble.
If you think a paragliding harness is offering you significant protection at speeds above 15 mph, think again

I actually had a major manufacture see my videos and email me personally telling me that "roll in landings" are dangerous


Flaring at running speed or less is the only acceptable speed to land. This is my opinion.
Flaring at running speed or less reduces your kinetic energy, and therefore your risk, as much as possible. This is not a matter of opinion.
And putting the base of your spine a few inches from the ground at speed is asking for double trouble.
This is not a matter of opinion. It has been proven thousands of times by HG and ultralight pilots and soaring parachutists in hard, sit-down landings.

                Image

For instance, if the weight of you and your glider is 240 pounds and you flare and drop perfectly without forward momentum, your kinetic energy is zero.
If you land and run at 12 mph as you flare, your kinetic energy is 17,280.
But if you land hot on wheels at 30 mph, your kinetic energy is 108,000.
That is carrying over six times as much force at touchdown as the 12 mph landing.
Notice that the increase in energy is not linear.
It is not 2 and a half times more energy.
It is enough to kill you.
Roll-in landings are dangerous.
That is what your hang gliding manufacturing friend was trying to tell you.
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A lot of foolish people think they're hang gliding with parachutes - but nobody ever thinks they're parachuting with hang gliders.
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby Rick Masters » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:29 am

Is 34 mph fast to a motorcyclist? Hardly.
How about for a guy on a skateboard? Yeah. He is hauling a**.
Then, how fast is 34 mph to a hang glider pilot?
This is the indicated airspeed Jim had when he touched down on the grassy field.
The true ground speed, of course, would be 34 mph minus the headwind on the field, but for the purpose of the example I am using zero headwind.
I came across an accident report from 1978 about a young British pilot, John Randall, 19, who launched his Chargus Midas Super E off a hill in Wales in turbulent conditions.
Witnesses saw the inexperienced pilot fall prey to Pilot Induced Oscillation (PIO) and execute a series of whipstalls of increasing severity until the glider entered a tailslide, then tucked at 60 meters, snapping both leading edges.
Randall hit the ground at an estimated 50 feet per second.
He died of his injuries before he reached the hospital.

50 fps is exactly 34 mph.
Using the mass of the previous example, the kinetic energy at impact was 138,720.
This is exactly 8 times the kinetic energy of a 12 mph landing.
It is really disturbing to realize that the small increase of only 4 mph added twice the kinetic energy of a 12 mph landing to the already fearsome 30 mph kinetic energy total.
This is why we land hang gliders as slowly as possible.
A slow speed whack or ground loop resulting in little (bent downtube) or no damage is really no big deal compared to a high speed landing accident.
In a high speed landing accident, where the glider is turned off course by a gust or thermal popping off and strikes a bush, rock or other unyielding object with the base tube, the nose rotates down and digs into the ground, the pilot flies forward into the keel and the entire aircraft balls up with a tremendous noise.
Sometimes the energy absorbed by the failing airframe saps away enough kinetic energy to allow the pilot to survive.
Other times, not.

This brings me to the rather murky area in aviation of good ideas vs. seemingly good ideas that don't really pan out.
There may not be any appropriately direct comparisons but the sad story of my friend John Hudson comes to mind.
John was a driving force behind bringing the British team to the Owens Valley Competitions in the early years of cross country.
Later on, he left hang gliding to build ultralights and founded Mainair Sports.
He built the highest quality aircraft he could conceive of and his models became very popular.
Then his customers started getting killed on them.
Then his friend and main test pilot died on one.
Then John was killed on a prototype, all within a year, I think.
Somewhere in that, a good idea turned bad.
You can't always recognize the cause but the funerals kinda spoil everything.
Me, I like simple hang gliders.
Light hang gliders.
I don't like hanging stuff on them.
I want them to fly fast in the air and I want them to slow down, way down, when I land.
I want to step onto the ground like getting off a bus.

The Factorial of Risk
In addition to luck, and perhaps a great deal of it, I feel I owe my survival to a concept I've always called The Factorial of Risk.
Factorials work like this: 5!=5x4x3x2x1=120
Say you can identify a number of things that can go wrong in a flight.
For a hang glider, you take off. That's one thing that can go wrong.
You fly around. Hopefully, you don't fly into something. That would be another thing that can go wrong. That's two.
You land. There is something else that can go wrong. That's three.
The Factorial of Risk would be 3!=3x2x1=6

If you're dumb enough to fly a paraglider, the risk increases.
You take off. That's one. But as you prepare to take off, you're facing backwards and can't see what's going on behind you: the direction you are about to be going. There could be a dust devil or hang glider crossing your path, so that's two. And you don't have an airframe so your canopy can collapse in turbulence below minimum reserve deployment altitude as you gain height. That's three.
You fly around. That's four. But your airfoil has almost no kinetic energy or momentum so it can go bonkers in turbulence. That's five.
Now as you descend towards landing, you pass below minimum reserve deployment height again. That's six.
Then you land. That's seven. Your factorial of risk is 7!=7x6x5x4x3x1=5,040. That is a lot more than 6.     :shock:
No, it doesn't mean paragliders are 830 times more dangerous than hang gliders.
But it means something.

Now think about all the things that can go wrong with towing hang gliders. You get a Factorial of Risk right up there with paragliding.
Every time you add a critical part to your hang glider, that thing has the potential to fail or cause unexpected problems.
Remember what happened at Jean Lake. The tow line snagged on an exterior wheel and two people died.
Each wheel added risk and the failure occurred in the air where wheels are not even useful.
I'm not trying to make a particular point about wheels.
There is no question they make tandem flights safer.
I'm saying that anything you attach to your hang glider adds a level of risk.
For instance, I built a locking sail tensioning lever and mounted to to the right downtube of my Moyes Meteor.
I thought it was pretty trick. It worked great.
Until I was circling in a thermal next to a 3,000 foot cliff and my Sport Keller zipper cord caught in it.
It put me in a spiral dive with my weight forward. I almost hit the cliff!
That lever added to my Factorial of Risk.

Hang gliders are simple aircraft.
That's what makes them safe.
When you veer away from that, you head into dangerous waters.
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A lot of foolish people think they're hang gliding with parachutes - but nobody ever thinks they're parachuting with hang gliders.
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby JoeF » Sun Feb 25, 2018 10:27 pm

smorrismlbcoMARINABEACH.JPG
smorrismlbcoMARINABEACH.JPG (17.12 KiB) Viewed 2037 times


================================
tag: safesplat, safe splat, safe-splat
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby reluctantsparrow » Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:21 pm

Rick Masters wrote:.
Then his customers started getting killed on them.
Then his friend and main test pilot died on one.
Then John was killed on a prototype, all within a year, I think.
Somewhere in that, a good idea turned bad.


Point Taken Rick. And yes, as the inventor of a hopefully good idea I have no desire to repeat history.
I am doing a series of "videos" now to point out all the pitfalls I have encountered so far developing the FlyBar. All the potential safety hazards, most of which will disappear with a harness researched and designed specifically for the suprone position, so I opened up a "go fund me" to make that a reality (hopefully).
I have tried over a dozen PG style harnesses so far....none of them are adequate. And I have discovered potential safety hazards using a PG style harness on a hang glider in the suprone position.....such as the "reserve" under the seat. Not only does it rob me of potential roll authority the reserve mounted under the seat is also a potential safety hazard.
I have decided if there is not enough interest in suprone at this point to finance a harness made specifically for the suprone position I am going to stop moving forward with the flybar..(which works great, but needs a proper suprone harness to work with it).

...here is a link to the first "harness considerations video":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIa4Zft6pVg

I seem to have lost the link to the "go fund me"... great...
If there is not enough interest in suprone, after over one year of heavily promoting it, to finance a "suprone" harness for our sport there certainly is not enough interest for me to start building and selling flybars...
here, I found a link to the YouTube version....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGY_eHsFm94
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby JoeF » Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:05 pm

I, Grandpa Faust, put in a first amount for Jim's project. Thanks, Jim, for content and manner!
Joe Faust (aka Grandpa Faust)
Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 3.10.15 PM.png
Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 3.10.15 PM.png (46.31 KiB) Viewed 2003 times


Getting the flight started ... with room for more onboard :!:
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby JoeF » Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:05 pm

Join a National Hang Gliding Organization: US Hawks at ushawks.org

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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby ARP » Tue Mar 06, 2018 4:44 pm

Jim,

May be this guy would be interested in your fly-bar:- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQryVLEDflo
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby JoeF » Thu Mar 15, 2018 7:43 pm

Sunny posted a second video message and paragraph:
HERE

He thanks those who have donated so far.
There is still time. :!: :) :salute:
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Re: Safe-Splat

Postby Frank Colver » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:01 am

JIM, WHY DIDN'T YOU RESPOND TO THE PM I SENT YOU? :?: :?: :?:
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