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Cold Weather Flying?

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Old 12-21-2012, 08:24 PM
  #1
Mr-Punk
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Default Cold Weather Flying?

How do you guys fly in the cold weather? I've flown with gloves on but I didn't fly as smooth. I can make my engines run ok but how ya fly when it's below 40 deg F?

Peace,
J
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Old 12-22-2012, 04:22 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?


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ORIGINAL: Mr-Punk

How do you guys fly in the cold weather? I've flown with gloves on but I didn't fly as smooth. I can make my engines run ok but how ya fly when it's below 40 deg F?

Peace,
J
A lot of guys wrap up in layers and also use the radio covers that cover your hands and the radio while you are flying. These devices have zippers, or velcro strips that close them and they have a hole cut in them for connected your radio strap.

I don't fly much when it gets cold as I just don't enjoy it flying in the cold that much anymor. I have the fingers cut out of my gloves and that helps me with my radio. Usually I am good down to around 50-60 and then I do fly New Years Day no matter the temp, but then not for long. Some folks fly with skis in very cold temps when there is snow. They have sheilds around their glow engines and use lighter fluid to start them.

I am sure more guys will chime in and let you know how they fly.
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:31 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Besides dressing for the weather,I use a radio glove with a chemical hand warmer inside when it's windy, other times just fingerless gloves or no gloves. We have a propane tank-top heater down at the flight line and that helps to warm up the hands while flying. Also having a JonE Warmer in your pocket helps too ! When flying electrics it's best to keep the charged lipos in your pockets to keep them warm. Nitro engines are sometimes hard to start when cold and you can warm them up using the heat from your vehicles exhaust or put a few drops of lighter fluid into the carb to get it fired-up. On somewhat calm sunny days we have been out when the temps were in the teens-twenties and it was comfortable. More so than when it's damp , cloudy and in the 30's. In severe weather or if we are going to be there all day we will set-up a small tent and put the heater inside !
I find a plane with floats works best in any snow conditions. Heavier planes with skis only work well on packed snow or around 2" of new snow. Lighter weight, somewhat over powered planes can use skis on almost any snow conditions.
Keep a close check on nicd/nimh flight packs when flying as the cold temps affects them too.
Oh, and don't hit your fingers with the spinning prop when it's cold out !

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Old 12-22-2012, 06:56 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

With a simulator on the computer, and my limit is 50. Gutless you could say I am a woose.
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Old 12-22-2012, 08:37 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

I try to keep it simple... I have a GP Escapade with electric motor. The plane is assembled at home and the batteries charged. I toss them in the back of the truck, go to the Field, and fly. The gloves stay on until I grab the transmitter. I can make a couple of short flights on a single LiPo pack. Then, I toss things back into the truck and head home.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:18 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Go to that online place that rhymes with feepay and type in transmitter glove.

Happy flyin', Oscar
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:02 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

I used to use plastic gloves and a plastic grocery bag over the transmitter but it's kindof hard now with the LCD readout on the box.
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:02 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Was at the field today. Sunny, about 34 degrees but breezy. Most of the snow had blew off the runway so it was a wheels on day. Flew with no gloves but could only do it for 8 minutes or so. Had 6 flights gasser and electric  DF and called it a day at  4pm. If it wasn't as breezy it would have been very comfortable out today.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:42 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Sorry guys, here the temp never drop from 40. So not too much of a change
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Old 01-01-2013, 04:05 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

You're saying that just to irritate us "Nawthun" guys, right???
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Old 01-02-2013, 01:50 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Hey folks. I went out to our flying field, as moral support for about a dozen of our members that were brave enough to go flying. It was about -25C, wind was blowing a bit, so I'm guessing the windchill was close to -35C. One of the members had a Hobbyking muff, http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...uff_Black.html and the tire warmers inside http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...er_System.html

Said his hands were toasty. That would have been the only part. I was frozen. So much for moral support.
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Old 01-02-2013, 02:16 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

We fly every New Year's Day in what we call the Frozen Needle Valve. At 7:30 am yesterday, it was a balmy 13*F. Balmy, because that's about 10 degrees warmer than last year.

First, dress for the weather. Most of our club members appear in insulated coveralls over layers, insulated pac boots, and stocking caps or bomber hats. Sunglasses are a must - especially if there is snow on the ground. Gloves vary. Some of us have learned to fly wearing thin gloves, the rest of us haven't. Some use transmitter gloves that enclose the transmitter and the hands. Cold fingers are the limit to most flying in these temps. Last year, at 3 degrees and a 10 mph wind from the north, most of our flights were around 5 minutes before tingling fingers forced landings. Difficult to fly if you can't feel the sticks . . .

Probably the greatest difference in cold weather flying is that glow engines don't start well in those temperatures. Open the needle valve a few clicks, choke the stew out of the engine, and open the throttle a bit more than usual. Prepare for a bit more time on the electric starter than in normal weather. Be gentle with the throttle once it fires up, and leave the glow ingitor on until things warm up. Many of us taxi out with the glow ingitor attached, and remove it just before we taxi onto the runway for take-off. Bump up the idle trim a bit once airborne. A touch-and-go or low and slow pass can become a landing due to flame-out when you advance the throttle in a hurry.

Flight isn't much different. Do be prepared for some trim adjustments, particularly on rudder and elevator if using nylon pushrods because of thermal contraction. Cold air is more dense, and therefore, will produce a bit more power.

Gas engines need a bit longer warm-up, but start much more easily than glow engines. Electric flyers are landing while we glow flyers are still cranking.

Batteries of all types suffer in cold weather. Electric flyers notice shorter flight times. Be sure to charge fully (starter battery, glow ignitor, airborne pack, and transmitter) before heading out, and watch your transmitter indicator. When that shows you are getting low, your airborne pack is probably getting low as well.
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Old 01-02-2013, 04:32 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

I've seen photos of guys who place their engine under the running exhaust of their car just to warm it up.

I haven't done that but I have used a few drops of lighter fluid down the intake to give it that little bit extra for starting. It seems to help,

Just my $.02

Bob
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Old 01-18-2013, 09:12 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Doog-meister

(snip)
Probably the greatest difference in cold weather flying is that glow engines don't start well in those temperatures. Open the needle valve a few clicks, choke the stew out of the engine, and open the throttle a bit more than usual. Prepare for a bit more time on the electric starter than in normal weather. Be gentle with the throttle once it fires up, and leave the glow ingitor on until things warm up. Many of us taxi out with the glow ingitor attached, and remove it just before we taxi onto the runway for take-off. Bump up the idle trim a bit once airborne. A touch-and-go or low and slow pass can become a landing due to flame-out when you advance the throttle in a hurry.
(snip)
Back in the 70's-80's when I lived in the Chicago land area, I flew quite a bit in the winter. Ski flying was good fun. Now here is an easy way to prime and get it running quickly. I used a battery with a Power Panel (Still Do). More heat for starts.
The big thing was to have a prime bottle. Use about 2/3 / 3/4 glow fuel with 1/3 to 1/4 gasoline. It makes all the differenc in the world. First I used propeleyne (sp?) oxide as a primer. However prop. is very touchy. Easy to flood. Once some guys put me on to gasoline, everything got easy.
Choke a bit to get fuel up. Prime with a good wet prime of the fuel and gas mixture. Holding the prop securely turn it over a couple times and feel the BUMP. Then flip or use a starter as you wish. Always worked well.

P.S. I think a lot of newbies to model engines are afraid to clean the back edge of props. As a competitive CL Stunt flier starting in the late '40s to mid 70s when we had one minute to signal a start, start, go to center of circle and start Take-Off, and starters were not allowed, having a sharp TE on the prop was not very smart. I find it the same this day and age. For certain in cold wx.
Good Luck out there!
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Old 02-01-2013, 11:34 AM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Most who've posted have covered it. I use a transmitter cover to keep the hands warm. I usually fly one of my electric models. If I fly a glow model, I give a squirt of lighter fluid (the kind used in Zippo lighters) down the carb to help it fire up.
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Old 02-01-2013, 12:32 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Can't believe nobody else cheats like I do. I have been know to put the tx antenna out the window of my nice warm truck. Of course, when it's cold enough to need to do that, I'm usually the only one there!
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Old 02-05-2013, 06:53 PM
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Default RE: Cold Weather Flying?

Get a shovel, clear off a runway. Go flying. Nothing to it.
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