Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Missouri Hawks Hang Gliding Club

Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby wes » Wed Jun 05, 2019 12:55 pm

Bob,

Thanks so much for the introduction! I've been meaning to post here, but I couldn't find the right spot. I didn't realize there was an entire section for us St. Louis folk!

A little about me: I live on the IL side of St. Louis. I have an H2 from Lookout Mountain, and I fly there occasionally. I've been fascinated by HGs since I was a kid, and finally have found the time and money to get into it.

Yes, I'd love to kick something into gear. I'd especially like to get some momentum on surface towing. We have all this flat land, straight roads, and friendly air strips, so let's use it! I am very good at getting the right resources and people together to create solutions to difficult problems. I've been doing that professionally for over 20 years. I think getting gliders in the air near St. Louis is doable, and I'd love to help build something great. Trouble is, I have very little experience with Hang Gliding, and will likely kill myself iterating on solutions without some guidance, help, and enthusiasm.

Who's in!?
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby SamKellner » Wed Jun 05, 2019 4:05 pm

Welcome Wes !

I am very good at getting the right resources and people together to create solutions to difficult problems. I've been doing that professionally for over 20 years.


That right there is worth a Lot. Me? I'm about as good as a rock at organizational skills.

If you need scooter tow Basic Instruction, I can do that.

Again Welcome to US Hawks

:wave:
Southwest Texas Hang Gliders
US Hawks Hang Gliding Assn.
Chapter #4
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:58 pm

Hi Wes,

First off, don't believe Sam when he says he's "about as good as a rock at organizational skills". Sam has been running the SW Texas Hang Gliders club for almost a decade now. Here's one of Sam's first posts:

On Sep 26, 2010, Sam wrote:
Fellow Hawks,

Thank You for accepting SW Texas Hang Gliders into the US Hawks Assn.

    Our goals: 
              Promote hang gliding and SW Tx. as a world class soaring local. 
              Provide year round flying.

    Previous accomplishments:
              1. Organizing "Texas Open" fly-in, '02-'09.
              2. Assisting in U.S. footlaunch record, DavidPrentice- 162mi.-PG

A big THANK YOU to the Hawks leadership, not only for this forum, but for having insight into what should be done that will further our sports growth.

Please feel free to contribute to discussions here.

Best Regards,
Sam Kellner, Pres.
SW Texas Hang Gliders
Torrey pilot '77-'85


In my opinion Sam's been doing a great job, and I'm proud to be a member of his club. Thanks Sam!!    :salute:

Sam has also been on the U.S. Hawks Board of Directors since it started in January of 2015. Sam's advice has always been calm and steady ... just like Sam himself. We are very lucky to have him on our Board.   :clap:

Now on to you, Wes. :)     The sport of hang gliding has been in a slump for a number of years now. We need people with enthusiasm to step up and be the leaders of a rebirth in their local areas. That's why we encourage new clubs like Sam's SW Texas Hang Gliders, and Scott's South Central New York hang gliding club, and Joe's (or Franks?) Friends of Dockweiler club, and our own Torrey Hawks club. Clubs give you an identity and an umbrella to rally under.

The Mo Hawks club is waiting for someone to step up and bring it to life. Warren did a great job of getting it started, but it needs a spark to step it up to the next level. Be that spark Wes!!

If you're not sure what to do, please send me a PM and we can discuss ideas. Where there's a will ... there's a way!!!
Join a National Hang Gliding Organization: US Hawks at ushawks.org
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"History is never recorded by truth never told." - Warren ("Free")
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sun Jun 09, 2019 9:14 pm

I just wanted to note that Wes and I had a great conversation this evening. He is very enthusiastic about hang gliding and we should each do our best to help him grow a community of pilots in St. Louis.

Thanks Wes. Call me any time!! :salute:

P.S. I just sent an email message to Jeff1979:

Hi Jeff,

This is Bob Kuczewski from the U.S. Hawks.

I'm writing to let you know that there's another young fellow from your area who just joined, and he's very enthusiastic about getting something going in the sport of hang gliding. He's been to Lookout Mountain Georgia and has his H2 rating.

If you haven't given up on hang gliding, I'd like to put you in touch. Maybe the two of you can thaw Warren (Free) out of hibernation and start flying again.

Please write back, or better yet, post to the Mo Hawks forum if you have any interest. Thanks.

Sincerely,
Bob Kuczewski


I don't think Jeff has posted in years, so I hope an email message might reach him.
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby Bill Cummings » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:55 am

Wes,
I’ll post later today with ideas to get you more
airtime.
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby Bill Cummings » Mon Jun 10, 2019 11:46 am

Hello Wes,
I started out towing January 1978 My USHGA/USHPA pilot number was 30448 but I let my membership run out as a protest in 2016.
With over 4,000 flights most of which are tow flights I moved from the flat lands of Minnesota to New Mexico in 1997. Now I mostly foot launch.
Of all the tow methods I much prefer platform towing (PL). The reason is it uses the simplest tow bridal system and has the least risk of bridle causing problems than any other method of towing.
But a PL winch/reel can be expensive.
About the cheapest and simplest method of towing is static towing (ST) with a car or truck.
Of all the tow bridles for ST I prefer the Skyting bridle to all others. The reason is that all the other bridles have a allowed problems that had been solved with the Skyting bridle to reappear with the "New and improved," bridles. Problems like the towline wrapping and capturing on parts of the glider upon release or even wrapping and capturing on the bridle itself. The secondary problem with most of the new and improved tow bridles would be that they allow the nose of the glider to get too high if the tow tension gets too high for whatever reason beyond which the pilot can control with weight shift. (Wind gradient, clueless driver, thermal gust.)
Of course the Skyting bridle doesn't look as pretty and presents an unnoticeable increase of parasitic drag.
If you look at our, "US Hawks Training Manual Project," I get into all this a little deeper.
http://ushawks.org/forum/viewforum.php?f=25
Also check out some static tows that I have on YouTube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6IFmX3t2vg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmsiOr5vOrs
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby wes » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:13 pm

Thanks Bill! I actually had run into those videos before when I was researching static tows. It's pretty cool that you made them. Now I just have to learn to do this myself, and to find others willing to do it too!
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby wes » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:15 pm

SamKellner wrote:Welcome Wes !

I am very good at getting the right resources and people together to create solutions to difficult problems. I've been doing that professionally for over 20 years.


That right there is worth a Lot. Me? I'm about as good as a rock at organizational skills.

If you need scooter tow Basic Instruction, I can do that.

Again Welcome to US Hawks

:wave:


Hi Sam! I'm not sure how I missed your message before, I must have scrolled right past it. Anyway, I'd love to learn how to scooter tow, but I think you might be a little too far away from me. :(

Thanks very much for your offer, and I'd love to take you up on it if we ever meet up!
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Re: Hello from St. Louis, Missouri

Postby SamKellner » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:43 pm

:thumbup:
Southwest Texas Hang Gliders
US Hawks Hang Gliding Assn.
Chapter #4
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