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How windy is too windy?

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Old 02-14-2007, 10:16 AM
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foosball_movie
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Default How windy is too windy?

Hello.

I may take a day off of work this Friday to enjoy some flying (North Texas), but the forcast calls for 12-13 mph winds. I've usually flown only in calm weather. Are 10-15 mph winds excessive? What can I expect?

Thanks.
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:23 AM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?


ORIGINAL: foosball_movie

Hello.

I may take a day off of work this Friday to enjoy some flying (North Texas), but the forcast calls for 12-13 mph winds. I've usually flown only in calm weather. Are 10-15 mph winds excessive? What can I expect?

Thanks.
Fooseball,
Where exactly are you located? (just curious). As you can see I live in Southwest Oklahoma, so what weather you have is the same that we have here too. To be totally honest with you, winds 10-15 mph are a normal flying day around here. If you don't learn to fly in the wind around you there are a ton of days that you'll be grounded. But no, winds 10-15 aren't excessive.

Ken
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:33 AM
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checkmate91
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Some guys who have posted replies to similar questions have stated up to 30mph! But I presume that's large fields in vast open speces. At my club in Essex UK, we don't fly above 15mph or so as the turbulence off the nearby trees is a bit too much to handle. It's good fun handling the plane in the breeze though...
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:41 AM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Fooseball-
Generally the wind is nothing to be worried about until it is strong enough to flip your plan on the ground, (or it is particularly gusty, )which may not be that much wind if you are flying a high wing trainer or plane with lots of dihedral.

There are full-scale techniques (slips and cross-controls, etc) you can use when landing to stay parallel to the runway, but with most trainer and sport planes you can do it the lazy man's way, just let the plane crab into the wind on final, using normal control inputs to keep it mostly parallel to the runway, and when it touches down straighten it out.

Keep your takeoffs and final approaches pointed into the wind as much as possible, even if you have to be a bit "cross runway" to make that happen.

Flying in the wind is great practice and IMHO a lot of fun once you get used to it. However, local conditions and obstacles will dictate what is safe for you and your plane, so if you are unsure, error on the side of caution.

Regards
Bob
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Old 02-14-2007, 10:47 AM
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foosball_movie
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

I'm flying in Denton, Texas. My plane is a Hobbico Hobbistar 60 Trainer. It has a 71 inch wingspan. It isn't the most stable of planes on the ground when there is no wind.
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Old 02-14-2007, 03:04 PM
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Skyhigh Bev
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

[color=#FF0099]foosball,
Here at our field, anything between 5 and 20 is a normal day. We get lots of days in the winter in excess of 20-25. My favorite is any strong wind coming straight down the runway left pattern..."harrier landings" I love doing them on touch n go's!!! Yes, once you get used to flying in the wind, you may have most of the field to yourself...(another plus)
Bev
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Old 02-14-2007, 03:13 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

ORIGINAL: foosball_movie

I'm flying in Denton, Texas.
Hey, I moved from Denton just 3 years ago. Its a nice field... My most vivid memory of that field was when a guy crashed his plane in the pond at the end of the runway... It was late fall and was really cold, but he swam out to get his plane anyway
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Old 02-14-2007, 03:29 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Yes, that pond is a little nerve-wrecking, especially since I'm just starting. I have to fly over the pond on my approach, but I panic a little and over shoot the runway and end up in the bushes at the other end. Not much room for error if a plane tries to land short.
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:06 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

usually for me the wind isnt a problem but when my plane starts flying backwards..........well thats a problem!!......
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:40 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

If you are concerned about flying in the wind just shorten your flight time by a couple minutes and allow yourself plenty of time to land. If you're uncomfortable on final just throttle up and go around. If you have enough fuel for several attempts you will be fine just don't force a landing.

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Old 02-14-2007, 04:52 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

When is too windy? When I set my plane down to fuel it and it takes off by itself!! I think that a lot depends on the plane and your experience level. On really windy days I love to fly my Twist or -Can-Do. I love to go backwards down the length of the runway or just hold a hover for as long as I can. Nothing like a "zero roll landing." The higher the winds, the better. Other planes like my Zero, I like to have a little lighter wind. I don't recommend a lot of trainers on extremely windy days, especially if it's a cross wind. If the wind is too high, I won't do much instruction - it's more of a fight with the plane and does not make flying fun for the student. My more experienced students (post solo), I will take them up and show them how to handle the wind, most often when I teach them how to do cross wind landings.
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Old 02-14-2007, 05:31 PM
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Skyhigh Bev
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

[color=#FF0099]bassfisher,
I see that you like to fly a Twist in the wind. 40 size? I'm just starting to fly mine....only a few flights so far...we've dialed out as much as we can in the plane for me so I can get used to it. I currently fly a World Model's SkyRaider Mach I....love it! Can you give me any insight as to what you like about using the Twist on windy days?
Bev
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Old 02-14-2007, 06:08 PM
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bassfisher
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Hi Bev- I love the Twist on windy days - it is one of those great planes that love to fly in any type of conditiond - windy to nothing. I've already worn one out - almost literally twisted the tail off in flight. I have flaps dailed into the radio, so it only increases the flight envelop. Currently I have a Saito .65 4-stroke on the front end of the current one. Both of my Twists have the CG set back a little so that I'm just on the border of being able to do flat spins, both inverted and upright. One of these days I'll move the CG back just a little more, depends how the next couple of months go until the real flying season starts up. Right now I love the cold air, makes the engines run better and the planes fly better. Adding the flaperons allows me to ususally have a rolling stop on landings to about three feet on a calm day. High rates are blistering in rolls, but the low rates are not set up for beginners either. It's a great fun-fly plane, but not in pattern events - that's what my U-Can-Do 40 is meant for.
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Old 02-14-2007, 06:41 PM
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Skyhigh Bev
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

[color=#FF0099]bassfisher,
Love what you can do with that Twist...When I grow up, can I be you?
Bev
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Old 02-14-2007, 07:00 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

I'm not sure if you want to go there!! Did a search of your profile - your field looks like a great place to fly. Hopefully the weather is better there than here. I'm just waiting for Saturday to get some more airtime! At least the cold weather lets me fly as much as I want (it's a good thing - hardly anyone else is out at the field! SAFETY FIRST[X(][X(]! I guess the best thing about this hobby is that you can never stop learning. Maybe one of these days I'll learn how to fly these beasts!! I think that I want grow up to be you!
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Old 02-14-2007, 07:12 PM
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bassfisher
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Oh - Happy Birthday
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Old 02-14-2007, 07:39 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

10-15 mph should present no problems. 25 mph and up gets a little tense, but I have flown in 35 mph wind with higher gusts, this made me nervous, especially since I was flying a Sig LT-40 trainer. Helicopter style landings and hovering are fun, and also impress on-lookers.

Bhady
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Old 02-14-2007, 08:43 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

I used to be afraid to fly in the wind until I started flying a plane that didnt mean that much to me. After my stinger 60 had been crashed and repaired several times, I could fly it without worrying about what happened to it. Buy yourself a used old cheap semi-sporty plane and go have fun in the wind!! Try doing stuff you cant do on a calm day.
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Old 02-14-2007, 09:00 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?


ORIGINAL: foosball_movie

Hello.

I may take a day off of work this Friday to enjoy some flying (North Texas), but the forcast calls for 12-13 mph winds. I've usually flown only in calm weather. Are 10-15 mph winds excessive? What can I expect?

Thanks.
Flying in winds all depends on a few things. What type of plane it is and also your skill level.

What you can expect is the plane when going into the wind will slow down so more power is needed, wind flying downwind (with the wind) the plane will pick up speed but be careful when making a turn from going downwind to crosswind because the wing loses lots of speed quickly and it starts to go crosswing plus now you have a wing low, coming around into the wind and the wind is going to want to continue to push that wing down so you may even find that you will need some opposite control to keep the turn going. As was already mentioned, keep the flight short to give you extra time for landing. Also make sure you takeoff into the wind and land into the wind. For landing you will most likely be keeping some power in to get it back to the runway and down

Just take it easy and if you do not feel confortable and have not taken off yet, the do not risk it
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Old 02-15-2007, 04:01 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Out here if you don't fly in the wind---you don't fly. Solution is get a bigger more powerful plane.


Rich

------------------------------

Wyoming Wind Festival Jan 1 to Dec 31
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Old 02-15-2007, 07:14 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

You may have gathered that there is no really good answer to your question. The more comfortable you become with wind, the more wind you can handle.

Flying in a laminar wind straight dow the runway is just plain fun. Flying in gusty, unpredictable crosswinds is, for me, too much of a risk for my expensive planes.

I have flown in STUPID windy conditions and found that it was not as much fun as I had hoped. Today, I flew in a very steady, light wind, straight down the runway and had a blast!

Landing your plane with zero ground-speed is just hilarious. Flying in wind will help you master rudder and throttle, do it.
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Old 02-15-2007, 11:12 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Well, I once flew my Diamond Dust in winds gusting to 45. What a ride. Of course, it hand launches and accelerates vertically, as well as it has the ability to land fairly fast and without landing gear. Down wind passes were phenominal.
But I've been flying models since 1994 and full scale since 2001, and I have the reactions of a 22 year old (i guess because I am one) When I first started flying I wouldn't fly in more than 15 MPH wind, and I wouldn't recomend flying a trainer in much more than that until you are well versed on the sticks.
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Old 02-16-2007, 11:34 AM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

I've flown a small electric airplane (35" ) in winds up to 50mph.. as long as it's a steady wind, no problem.. it's fun. Get your plane to actually fly backwards :P
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Old 02-16-2007, 12:03 PM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

like mentioned several times above, the wind isn't so much a problem if it is steady and coming from a good direction (parallel or close to parallel to the runway) but if it is gusty and unpredictable or crosswind or even both it gets a bit more challenging. a high wing trainer is tough to taxi in gusty crosswinds though. it will want to tip over on you if you get a good gust under one of the wings. on the worst of the days i have flown my trainer and was unable to taxi out to the runway, i would just walk it out there and point it into the wind as much as possible and didn't do too badly that way.
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Old 02-19-2007, 11:25 AM
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Default RE: How windy is too windy?

Well, I survived. Winds 16-18 mph SSE which created a bit of a crosswind on the landings, but it slowed down the plane very nicely on final approach. That first right turn after takeoff was a little dicey.
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