Pages Menu
TwitterRss
Categories Menu

Posted by on Jan 30, 2013

AC1 V3.5 Upgrade

AC1 V3.5 Upgrade

Rain, rain, nothing but… Yes, there is only one thing to be done when it’s raining lots – to the test bench for some tweakings and upgrades ! Tweak 1 – Re-route ESC Power This is being done in order to try and fix the recent ‘throttle-jump’ problems I’ve been having since back at this post… it hasn’t affected my flyings too badly, but it was there often enough to ruin my cinematic moves with sudden unwanted ascents, and to make landing a tedious drawn-out process of ‘catch the bouncing hex’. Having scoured the internets for solutions and people having similar problems I found largely nothing, except one thread by a guy who had identical symptoms, and swapped out every single component and wire in an effort to solve it. After trying everything, he finally thought to re-route ESC power away from the lower circuit boards internal tracks and direct from battery pack to the ESCs via a 6-way power distribution harness, and it cured the problem for him....

Read More

Posted by on Jan 27, 2013

Winter Sun Sky Surfing

Winter Sun Sky Surfing

Ruined off. Like rained off, except involving ancient battlements. Today’s video efforts are something of a backup plan, or rather what happens if you do an elaborate plan to go fly a site, and then get there to find that Google street view has let you down and access is absolutely impossible. Doesn’t happen often, but did today. So was the case with Bishop’s Waltham Palace. So myself, Special M and first-time flyer / improvisational cameraman Paul left, slightly disappointed we couldn’t do our original plan. Fortunately Hampshire is full of top countryside, and some of that isn’t locked, so we went looking for a bit of that instead. Drive-by Flyings… Leaving Bishop’s Waltham we climbed back on the A272 towards home, and did some drive-by flyings when we randomly found a very attractive golf course, later discovered to be Corhampton / Droxford Down, at the top of a very high hill, topped off by an atmospheric spot of Winter sun, and the flyings commenced. Temperatures were reasonable, a nice...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 26, 2013

Last Snow

Last Snow

The big melt. I knew before I left that the wind was going to be high today, but it was also going to be dry, and the snow was looking like it was on the way out , so I felt I should at least try and go and get something… I was half way down to the coast when I saw some trees almost bent double in the wind, and reasoning that wind is always worse on the coast, abandoned that plan. I was close to Butser, so had a quick drive up to the top to see what it was like there. Ridiculous is what it was. I considered doing the mother of all GPS position lock tests, but in the end the lack of visibility, low cloud and the whole area being fenced off convinced me that here wasn’t going to work either. Stopped to check my ‘Lower South face of Butser’ fly-site, and wind that much lower was slightly better; flyable at least,  but I...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 24, 2013

Ruins In The Mist

Ruins In The Mist

Drive-by Flyings. Today was very cold and misty, and I was resolved to go and get some footage of a large foresty spruce / fir tree canopy that I’d seen on Google maps just a bit further along the A272 from where I usually turn off for Elsted Common. The best laid plans… As it turned out, there was nowhere to park, and no easy access to my chosen tree bank that didn’t involve being some sort of gymnast, so I abandoned that plan, and drove along the road with some opportunistic drive-by flyings in mind. Rounding a corner, I saw what looked like a little roundhouse or fort in the middle of a field from the road, and then chanced upon the entrance to Cowdray Park, a venue I recognized, having played several peoples weddings there. But I had forgotten it was anywhere near me, or that I had resolved to go flying here, so what a chance find as I’m randomly driving about… Inspection, check 1. Cowdray...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 22, 2013

The Winter Freeze – Ascents at Sunset

The Winter Freeze – Ascents at Sunset

Rewarding flights. Yep, it’s my ground zero practise field again, but I’d been diligently doing tedious tax stuff all day, and I finished just as the sun was going down, so I felt I deserved a quick flight or 4  in an effort to regain the will to live. The melt begins… This time we’ve got most of the snow, it’s nicely (and in the video more brightly than you’d think) illuminated by a setting sun, and in places I’m going up very high to look at it doing so. This proves a better idea than last time, as today there isn’t a layer of solid grey cloud 200 ft above the ground. So this video, whilst it has got some low stuff at the start is mainly about the high pans and smooth motion on a pretty much windless day. I say windless, there is no such thing when you are at that sort of altitude, but on the ground at least, it’s only 2 mph. So even...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 21, 2013

The Winter Freeze – Elsted Common

The Winter Freeze – Elsted Common

In the bleak mid-winter… It might be bleak, and very very cold – indeed I very much froze my proverbials to the core getting you this footage, so let’s enjoy a Wintery look round over some evergreen trees, my second favourite quarry, and marvel at the intricate network of paths and symbols on the frozen ground that make up one side of Elsted / Iping Common… Yep, it’s one of my favourite flying grounds, and being determined to capture it in all seasons, I am pleased to add Winter to the list. Only Spring to go, and I have a complete year. Cinematically speaking… There wasn’t that much wind today, and what there was didn’t really get above 12 mph, so whilst it’s certainly not the smoothest flight vid I’ve ever made, at last I can add a snow-flight to my collection that doesn’t also involve the ridiculous shaking of previous efforts. I was on my own, and didn’t meet a single soul today, so was able to focus...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 19, 2013

The Winter Freeze – PF Lake & White flights

The Winter Freeze – PF Lake & White flights

No Business like snow business. 2 vids in one this time, as one really isn’t very good, and yesterday’s flight is just me whazzing about in some real-time snow, so we’ll gloss over that (it’s at the bottom somewhere if you really want to watch it), and get on to today’s, which is much more interesting… Songs of Fire and Ice (no songs, or fire though) So, I woke up today to find it had stopped snowing, which meant I could venture further afield than the field by my back garden. To the lake then, which seems the obvious choice, given that Petersfield Town Council have just kindly extended my flying area until March so I can capture the wintery goodness. So here I am, doing that. What’s that, Mummy ? Loads of people, and their children / dogs about, so mostly flew over the lake where they weren’t, and my rigorous preflight checking paid off in that I didn’t fall into the lake at any point. So that’s...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 16, 2013

Southsea Sky Surfing

Southsea Sky Surfing

Over the sea, not in it, please. It’ s cold out, but I’ve got a hat, and thermal socks that go up to my knees. We’re on the South Coast, just down a bit from South Parade Pier… This was my plan… As you can see, the green ‘safe area’ is rather smaller than the red danger areas. The orange bits are where I definitely won’t be overflying. The yellow bit is where I’ll be mostly flying with caution, and the blue and white arrows are showing wind at different speeds and heights. Note the wind is unhelpful in almost every way. Today was full of adventures… a lot of wind, a lot of sea, one RTH, one home lock return, and lots of people watching – if you’re reading this now, hello ! :) I’m specifically here to do a little lens-to-lens spy action on Portsmouth-cam.co.uk, who have a camera mounted a short way down from South Parade Pier. This is me. I was conscious of the fact that...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 16, 2013

First Snow 2013

First Snow 2013

It’s all gone white. I woke up, saw the snow, hurried down a pint of warming tea, and got out in it straight away (bout 10.30 in the end) to bring you the sort of video that is largely unspectacular but never mind because it’s been snowing ! It had just stopped. So a very brief couple of flights around my ground zero training field, and quick pan round the town at the cloud line. Then my fingers froze, despite help from the HotRok that Special Observer M had got me for xmas. Without that, they would have frozen 10 minutes earlier. Keeping warm However, as soon the temp is below 0 degrees, the HotRok will be not be wasted on anything as unimportant as fingers; it’s going in the battery bag to keep my LiPo’s at room temp for as long as possible, hopefully without setting fire to them. This might help avoid the drastic reduction of flight time you get with very cold battery packs. Even as I type...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 16, 2013

Broom Channel 7’s

Broom Channel 7’s

What the hell is a Broom Channel ? You might well ask. Hey Kids… I’m back, and it was almost another castle before I decided that the wind was just too high for any sort of town center fortress flying. So this is the backup plan, and we’re on the South Coast (almost) just off the A27 to Southsea flying next to an inlet called.. you guessed it;  the Broom Channel.   There’s a sailing club, a quarry, a large field, and a lot of sea, sandbars and islands, not to mention a massive industrial estate over the other side of the road, and it’s all lit by some rather nice Winter sun on a Sunday afternoon… Having said that, it was so cold my nipples were talking to me, like Jean-Claude Van Damme’s in that advert. Lot of wind as well, gusty and around 30 mph in places. Home lock had to be employed once, and worked a treat. Because of the wind, I’ve had to get de-shake...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 12, 2013

Castles by the Sea

Castles by the Sea

Porchester Castle, Hampshire. I seem to be on a bit of a castles mission at the moment, or at least the ones relatively close to me. Today was another windless wonder (that’s 2 in a row – almost unheard of!) so this time I was up and on it and down the coast  by 1.30, when the sun was already quite low in the sky, and was doing good shadows everywhere. It’s the first time we’ve seen the sun for ages, so I was damn well going to be out in it, doing stuff. I was expecting to have some ‘access problems’ or ‘staff problems’ here, but neither transpired, there were no gates, or signs to say I couldn’t enter the public walkway outside the castle, and I was unchallenged for the entire time I was there. I couldn’t find any staff to ask for permission.  A  fair few local residents came along and were very interested and encouraging, and even helped me take some video at one point....

Read More

Posted by on Jan 12, 2013

Drive-by Flyings 9 – Petersfield Heath

Drive-by Flyings 9 – Petersfield Heath

Circles in the mist. Well, it’s one of those rare virtually windless days, so it is my duty to be in the air doing something with it. I’d got up late, even by musician standards, and didn’t manage to get out the door until the light was failing, so decided to head to my favourite training ground, Petersfield Cricket Club Field. Seen it all before ? I fly here so often that not much I film here makes it into videos, as I don’t want to keep showing you stuff you’ve seen loads before, but it’s a been a while, and I don’t think I’ve made a video all about here for quite some time. Anyway, I was struck by the beautiful Winter colours – all that amazing russet brown and purple, and I love the crazy textures on the ground over the heath as old paths and new carve their ancient way across the heathland… Sailing the tree line Video quality is a bit suspect, mainly down to...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 7, 2013

Guildford Castle

Guildford Castle

To the battlements! Today was a rare day, here in the UK, in that there wasn’t much wind and it wasn’t raining. This doesn’t happen very often, so I was duty bound to venture forth and take advantage of excellent flying conditions. Actually it wasn’t that ideal because of all the fog, which ruled out anything really high, but fortunately the things I was trying to film were mainly underneath it. I’ve been getting a bit over-saturated with fields, trees, moors and commons recently, so I thought I’d go and fly round something a bit more interesting, and so I took expert spotter M with me, who was there to double check my flying and explain to the people what was going on / keep them safe etc, and headed to Guildford Castle, a building which has been on my list of photo-targets ever since I started flying. I suspect this is because it is a castle, vaguely near me. As castles go… It’s not the best castle in...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 5, 2013

South Downs Heights

South Downs Heights

Cloud-bashing for beginners. There have been a lot of flights since Christmas, but not many have made it into videos so far in 2013, either because I’ve been using old flight grounds that you’ve all seen many times before in my vids, or because of our old friend the wind, and its comprehensive video-ruining properties. So this is another one that ends up more about the flight than the video footage… It’s Queen Elizabeth Country Park… Today, more specifically, I was meant to be heading down to the D-Day museum in Southsea, to do the seafront there, but aborted that plan because of distance and the likelihood of rain, so stopped half way at Queen Elizabeth Country Park, and drove all the way to the top car park to see what the view was like from the hill the other side of Butser. Normally, given the blanket tree cover, I don’t fly from here very much because the clear spaces in the trees aren’t huge, which makes eyes-on contact...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 2, 2013

Festive Flyings – Godalming

Festive Flyings – Godalming

Flying in a Windy Wonderland. Well it’s been a while since an update from me, but that’s because there’s been Christmas… Seasonal flying has been a bit sporadic and opportunist, as I’ve been very busy with Xmas gigs, web work and the weather has been most dreadful, with some really howling winds kicking in as Winter takes hold. Nothing as nice as snow has arrived, but the wind and rain and fog are certainly doing their best to fill the wintery gap its absence leaves. Somewhere (almost) new Was staying with my parents over in Godalming for festivities, so shot out on Xmas day for a quick 3 or 4 flights round the local field, taking in the new forest and spiritual retreat that lies normally hidden from view behind majestic banks of trees. No video for that one, as the 30 mph gusting wind made my footage mostly horrible… as we can see, even stills are not great in the focus department…   The next day was a...

Read More