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  1. #1
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    Skydemon as a possible life saver.

    Thanks Vince for posting your honest account of your near death experience and looking at The Google Earth images really bring it home – frightening, and a warning to all of us.
    I hope the following may be of interest to Skydemon and similar GPS users who fly flexwing’s.
    I recently acquired an Ipad and installed Skydemon. After a few flights of getting used to it and amazed at the info it showed I thought I would try an experiment.
    Late one evening (with a passenger as a lookout) I was just a few miles from my airfield and at 2500ft I imagined I flew into cloud but knew the airfield was clear at 1500ft. By just looking at the Ipad (but obviously still giving a good look out every few seconds) I used Skydemon to fly by.
    By watching the track, altimeter and speed on the Skydemon screen I found that by little adjustments of throttle and small bar inputs I could descend gradually and stay on track to the desired 1500ft.
    Following this success we did a second test but this time flying away from the airfield but then having to turn back away from the ‘imagined’ cloud. We did the same as the previous night and found I was able to turn and return to the airfield as before.
    I know I had spatial awareness because of my frequent lookouts and I was never in cloud, I also had a passenger as an extra lookout so I was never frightened etc., etc. but I believe that because a flexwing will naturally want to fly level the above experiment could help as a last resort to possibly save someone’s life.


  2. #2
    Founding Member - See my blog entries for help using the forums VinceG's Avatar
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    Oh nameless one

    I had skydemon on my knee the whole way through the episode. Everything happens so fast when you are in cloud you've no idea.

    Try it in cloud next time. I guarantee you'll kill yourself!
    Happy Safe Flying
    May your Landings = Your Take Offs
    Vince Gledhill
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  3. #3
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    Darwin Award for the OP of this thread.

    I am quite enjoying reading all the different dialogues about Vince's flight into cloud.

    I am of the opinion that other than Vince himself & flyingboy ( and maybe a few others ) the rest of you are just opining on what you think will happen !

    The Original poster of this thread is really naive if he/she believes that Skydemon is going to save your life in a ' White Out ' or ' Black Out ' situation whilst flying a Flexwing.

    As Vince says... He has Skydemon himself and without knowing your actual flying background I doubt you would survive too many of your Skydemon derived approach procedures in IMC CONDITIONS.

    Firstly you need to understand that Skydemon is not failsafe and has still got a long way to go before being anywhere near perfect.
    The procedure you describe has been around since GPS became popular and any GPS with VNAV functionality & mapping does the job better.

    The fact that you can achieve results in your pseudo IMC environment is not the same as achieving the same result when you are seriously under pressure, I am quite happy to walk on a Tightrope at 10ft above the ground but raise that tightrope to 50ft above the ground and I'm seriously under pressure.
    The same can be said about doing a mock bad weather procedure and then doing it for real.

    I wouldn't rely too much on Skydemon over & above it being a supplement to your flightplanning, it certainly isn't reliable enough to shoot an 'unofficial ' approach or descent with.


  4. #4
    Founding Member - See my blog entries for help using the forums VinceG's Avatar
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    Please "guest posters" at least give us some indication of "who you are"

    Sorry, I'll re-phrase that. Please give us some indication of your qualifications to justify your comments.

    For example, Flexwing pilot, 20 years experience, caught out myself on 2 occasions, and lived to tell the tale
    .... Flexwing pilot, just qualified
    .... new to flying trikes...

    Whatever! Otherwise, it could simply be anyone, about anything, and there's no point, nobody will take any notice.
    Happy Safe Flying
    May your Landings = Your Take Offs
    Vince Gledhill
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  5. #5
    Captain Frank Thorne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VinceG View Post
    Oh nameless one

    I had skydemon on my knee the whole way through the episode. Everything happens so fast when you are in cloud you've no idea.

    Try it in cloud next time. I guarantee you'll kill yourself!

    I think you missed the point there Vince.. If you spiral down into cloud it doesnt matter what instruments you have they are not going to help you as your no longer in a controlled descent. A spiral dive requires visual references to complete not instruments.

    Quote "The Original poster of this thread is really naive if he/she believes that Skydemon is going to save your life in a ' White Out ' or ' Black Out ' situation whilst flying a Flexwing."

    Again I think you are missing the point... Descent through cloud IS THE LAST RESORT. If you get to that point then you use everything available to you to make a controlled descent. If you have a better idea please share it.
    Last edited by Frank Thorne; 25-02-15 at 08:40 AM.


  6. #6
    Founding Member - See my blog entries for help using the forums VinceG's Avatar
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    I never mentioned spiralling down. Re-read the thread.
    Happy Safe Flying
    May your Landings = Your Take Offs
    Vince Gledhill
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    http://www.greeneru.co.uk to save the planet by changing to LED lights.

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  7. #7
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    Skydemon is not flawless.

    In my previous post I said "Firstly you need to understand that Skydemon is not failsafe and has still got a long way to go before being anywhere near perfect "

    The misconceptions of Skydemon could quite easily kill you. Here is a scenario for anyone interested to ponder.

    Plan a trip between LGRP to LGKJ ( OK I know we are mainly UK pilots but some of the Adventurous ones amongst us venture far from home )

    Plan it on your PC and look what is to the North of LGKJ ?
    Now plan it on whatever gizmo you use whilst flying...... what is to the North of LGKJ ?

    The scenario is : You have got into cloud and you are now 20nm North of LGKJ so you decide to descend to get below cloud, on what you see on your screen you may just descend lower than is safe.


    Qualified Pilot with lots of hours who has had more than his fair share of frights, the above is one such example.


  8. #8
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    Vince just a quick question, if you had a ballistic chute would you have deployed it in that situation?
    Flexwing Pilot
    Mainair Blade 462
    G-MZAG


  9. #9
    Founding Member - See my blog entries for help using the forums VinceG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick_Sanderson View Post
    Vince just a quick question, if you had a ballistic chute would you have deployed it in that situation?
    No. Although it was scary, and we were going pretty quick, at no time did I experience negative G.
    Happy Safe Flying
    May your Landings = Your Take Offs
    Vince Gledhill
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    http://www.greeneru.co.uk to save the planet by changing to LED lights.

    Find help here with various aspects of using the forum in my blog


  10. #10
    Captain woodysr2's Avatar
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    Why would you descend 20 nm north of the airfield you intend to land at when you could fly to said airport(possibly with clear air) and descend out over the water with no obstruction to worry about also no one as far as I have seen has said that it could or should be used to fly a course in anything other than vfr conditions.
    It is merely a tool that should the proverbial hit the big spinney thing that you can get to somewhere above the cloud knowing the base and terrain below at least have a chance of making it through the cloud layer into clear air before meeting terra firma
    fly high fly safe and may you always have the wind at your back
    (except when taking off or landing according to Phil )


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