This weekend was the weekend! Jay waited until this weekend so that I could be there for the maiden flight. We were both a bit nervous about sending this beautiful, lovingly built jet up into the air. We tested the wing strength the night before, as best we could, and went over the check lists to make sure that everything was ready to go.
It takes up almost the entire back of the car, and that’s with the wings and tail off. Saturday morning was overcast and gloomy looking, so Jay was hoping that there wouldn’t be many people at the field. Just in case. There were a couple of guys there, but we hauled it out of the car, assembled it, and started the batteries to charging. Jay flew one of his other planes and we both tried to act like we weren’t nervous about the upcoming flight.
Actually, Jay didn’t think that he was going to try flying the A-10. It would be the first time that the fans were run up outside, so he was just going to taxi around to see how they handled and how the landing gear traveled on the grass. Until we got to this point here in the picture. That’s when Jay thought, “It’s got to go up sometime,” and he mashed his thumb down on the throttle. It picked up speed… quickly eating up the runway…
And then it was in the air!!! I nervously held my breath for the first few seconds, making sure that it was going to stay up in the air. When I started breathing again I wanted to jump up and down, cheering. There was still a lot of flight time, though, so instead I continued to keep my fingers crossed and take pictures.
It really flew beautifully! It had plenty of power and really looked great in the sky. I honestly don’t know what else to say about it because I wasn’t the one flying, but I sure was enjoying the sight of it in the sky.
It’s hard to believe that this is what it looked like back in October. It was just styrofoam. It hadn’t been covered or assembled or anything. In fact, at this point of seeing it I couldn’t even imagine that it would eventually be in the air.
And yet it was. For five minutes. Then it was time to bring it down to see how the batteries handled the first flight. They were new batteries and had only been flown a couple of times. The next step of the process, though, is landing and we were a bit nervous about how that was going to go.
It was a gorgeous landing! Jay really showed off his skill and greased it in. It was almost as if Jay had landed it a million times before. The landing gear (that Jay custom built) held up beautifully. We were all smiles and everybody who was there to watch the first flight applauded. Now that the first flight is over Jay can get down to business fine-tuning things and finishing the detail work on it.
One of the other guys and I decided that at the club’s air show we need to mock up a tank with some charges set behind that can be set off as Jay flies in, looking like the Hog is strafing the tank and then as Jay pulls up and out of the run the tank can blow up. Wouldn’t that be great??!
We saw Cliff, the club president, on Sunday at the pylon races. There was a small group of us gathered around, just chatting about things. Jay mentioned that if he had thought about it he would have brought up the money to pay my membership dues into the club since I’ve gotten my AMA membership. Cliff said, “Since I’m the club president I can give her a complimentary membership to the club since she’s the first female member.” Jay piped up and said that sounded like a motion, so he was seconding it then asked who else was in favor. The rest of the guys in the group said, “Aye!” all at the same time. Cliff felt that he should open it up to the rest of the club so he yells out to the other guys (who had no clue what he was talking about), “All those in favor?” and wouldn’t you know that most of the other guys just yelled, “Aye!” without knowing what they were approving. lol. So, thanks to the very nice guys in the club, I received a free membership to the club. I guess that means I have to start attending meetings. That’s okay. Maybe I can dazzle the older guys with my smile and while they are entranced I can get some fun things passed during the meetings. 🙂