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John Wighton

Alpina

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John Wighton

Due to the interest in the Alpina Magic which was recently on the forum For Sale pages l thought l'd start a discussion by showing my last one (see pic).

I got the original one in the late 80's, it was 4m and flew at around 13-14 oz/sqft loading.  I optimistically fitted it with a RS hook and tried to bungee it. That was not too successful unless it was pretty windy.  Hand towing needed a fit and fast person, we never thought of dual towing in those days.

It came into it's own on the slope.  The picture is of (a younger) me in July 1992 in Verbier.  The day before was 20 degC sunny and lovely, overnight it snowed (such is the fickle alpine weather) and we had some snow.  The wind was apparently good for the southern bowl but 5 secs after chucking it off l realised there was a huge curle-over.  Today l guess people DS in these conditions - l made a slopeside landing and had a 40 min retrieve (no damage).

The main problem with the Alpina was getting it down (when the wind is blowing up the slope).  Without servos in the wings you had to rely on the spoilers. Nowadays most of them are fitted with wing servos for reflex aileron which helps dump the lift.

I sold off my original and immediately regretted it, seeing one come up in the For Sale site was good news.

I intend to FPV (and possibly electrify) my new one (collecting it tomorrow from Jerry).

The mag l am holding is Silent Flight - they used to invite people to send in pictures with a copy of their mag.

JW

CCI12022017_0002.jpg

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Phil.Taylor

Good luck with the new Alpina

I had fun a couple of years ago with a battered old Alpina & a DG500 fuselage which shared the same wings. Unfortunately destroyed due to radio failure. Links to forum pages below:

Phil.

 

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Gary B

Good stuff John.

I think the ASW 22 uses the same wings, mine flies very solidly at 18.5 oz/sq ft.

 Cheers

    Gary

Picture 024.jpg

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wookman

Back in the early eighties as a poor apprentice I dreamed of owning an Alpina. The chance eventually came a couple of years ago through an add on BMFA. That one is still on the bench undergoing a radio update. Orange Multiplex servos with plastic gears might have been ok in 79 but.....

Alpinas are like buses, none for ages then two come along. A clubmate decided to get rid  of his. I got first refusal at a price that just couldn't say no. Thanks Joe.

Here she is doing her thing on the Menez Hom in Brittany at last years Rencontre de Grand Planuers.

Merci Damien pour les photos.

Alpina2.thumb.jpg.76876c772f5e693e10b667366f235f78.jpgAlpina.thumb.jpg.348b6aa206a7a2eea88c6d87f7d1fda8.jpgAlpina3.thumb.jpg.1ba4333a931f976a43c7048792f62030.jpg

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Darren_O
On 2/12/2017 at 17:33, John Wighton said:

Due to the interest in the Alpina Magic which was recently on the forum For Sale pages l thought l'd start a discussion by showing my last one (see pic).

I got the original one in the late 80's, it was 4m and flew at around 13-14 oz/sqft loading.  I optimistically fitted it with a RS hook and tried to bungee it. That was not too successful unless it was pretty windy.  Hand towing needed a fit and fast person, we never thought of dual towing in those days.

It came into it's own on the slope.  The picture is of (a younger) me in July 1992 in Verbier.  The day before was 20 degC sunny and lovely, overnight it snowed (such is the fickle alpine weather) and we had some snow.  The wind was apparently good for the southern bowl but 5 secs after chucking it off l realised there was a huge curle-over.  Today l guess people DS in these conditions - l made a slopeside landing and had a 40 min retrieve (no damage).

The main problem with the Alpina was getting it down (when the wind is blowing up the slope).  Without servos in the wings you had to rely on the spoilers. Nowadays most of them are fitted with wing servos for reflex aileron which helps dump the lift.

I sold off my original and immediately regretted it, seeing one come up in the For Sale site was good news.

I intend to FPV (and possibly electrify) my new one (collecting it tomorrow from Jerry).

The mag l am holding is Silent Flight - they used to invite people to send in pictures with a copy of their mag.

JW

CCI12022017_0002.jpg

Now that looks a nice slope! I enjoy watching the youtube vids of big slopers on big slopes. The sight of large gliders soaring the Alps is something special.

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pete beadle

Hi Darren

I don't know how to turn this into a link but, if you type this title into YouTube you'll be in for a treat!

"Flying into the wild (Emparis) with an Alpina 4001 Pro Tangent - RC electric glider".........don't worry about having to type the whole title, YouTube's predictive text will take over pretty sharpish.......enjoy!

Pete

BARCS1702

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John Wighton

Terrific video link and a nice site.  8/10 attempts of mine to fly high in the Alps results in being cloud bound.  Most of the flying occurs in the lower slopes, which is the main reason why the motor is needed.  I used to fly off a nice site near Stans, CH.  The owner was an ex-Pilatus Aircraft employee (turned farmer in retirement) - we used a 20m short bungee to get out into the lift.  Slopeside landings (or a walk to the bottom) were normal.  Having flown since aged 10 on UK 'conventional' slopes (i.e. when you stand at the top) l found this type of flying 'interesting'.

Looking now for some suggestions on a suitable power setup for the Alpina Magic.  Any ideas?

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pete beadle

Hi John

Personally I'd always loved the idea of operating a big scalie (or an Alpina) in Switzerland....the slopes/mountains seemed to be ideal....

Then a good mate of mine went to work in Switzerland and e-mailed me the conditions he'd had to fly......virtually no slope lift, hardly any thermal lift and afternoon after afternoon sitting in thick mist with hardly any wind to speak of getting cold, damp and bored! Happy he was not!

He subsequently told me that the best slope soaring flights he had were sloping off his hotel's veranda with an HLG......lovely view of the lake and six paces from the bar!

Another good friend of mine electrified his Alpina Magic, said it RUINED the flying qualities and so he took all the kit out and flew it as an Alpina, (without the tip extensions) for years.......purely as a personal view I think the Alpina Mk 1's handling qualities are superb and can't be improved.......but CAN be ruined by fitting a big motor and a big lipo......totally my view only though, I also know one chap who SWEARS by his electric conversion on his 4001....you pays yer money etc........

Regards

Pete

BARCS1702

  

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John Wighton

Exactly my experience Pete (flying in Switzerland).  My apartment faced west with a large area of flat ground (valley floor) out towards the Stanserhorn.  As l had the top floor with a 40m wide balcony l used to fly electric models off the roof.  Sometimes the  wind was good enough to slope a Zagi.  Landing on the open ground 3 storeys down was tricky without a shadow to follow.

Regarding electrifying the Alpina, l suspect that many people use huge batteries.

The video link sent makes a pretty compelling story for electrification, although my main use on a slope would be get-you-up and therafter as a get-you-home.

Do you still fly yours off the Suffolk cliffs?

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pete beadle

Hi John

I'm pretty sure Jean Mark Zuliani (the pilot of the 4001) was doing exactly what you were wanting with his electrification.......he was at the top of a mountain he would have no chance to "land out" on, without doing A LOT of damage to his 4001

No, the problem is that Multiplex don't build "light and flimsy".......I've never seen anyone flying an Alpina with ballast.......no it's that extra weight up front that makes all the difference IMHO.....flying with a small lipo just wouldn't give you enough "pound-shedding" capability

A case in point, I recently bought a "Kranich" from a chap who'd fitted it with a brushed motor, I stripped out the motor, ESC and lipo and tried to turn it back into a (lighter) glider. In order to get it to balance at the recommended CG position, I'm going to need 8.5 ounces of unproductive lead(!) Instead I'm going to replace the tailplane with a much lighter one and move the CG back aways to get the noseweight needed down to less than 4 ounces......

Suffolk Cliffs? Are you sure you've got the right Pete?

Regards

Pete

BARCS1702  

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Biggles

Guys,

I regularly fly my Alpina. It is an original with the servos in the fus. (On a little ply slide to aid rigging). I have added Multiplex wing fasteners to speed rigging doing away with the rubber bands, otherwise she is standard. I think the original looks so much better than the latest variant. Having aspired to one of these legendry beauties for some time I acquired mine almost un-flown a few years ago. Now, after lots of flights from the slope and from a powered tow I have the confidence to fly it anywhere in almost all conditions. In fact I would say it flies like a big trainer. It's my baby and is the glider in my avatar.

Happy Alpinering,

John - inventor of a new verb!

IMG_0756.JPG

IMG_0100.JPG

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Andy_B

Elastic bands ...?

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John Wighton

Alpine Magic, after spending 30 mins checking all is working and freeing up steel joiners with some wire wool (main joiner needed tweaking) she is looking good to go. The spoilers need a little tlc, the servos are installed at the root and operate the mechanical mech via longish wire rods. I will install some return springs. Next installment - flight test!!!

IMG_1090.JPG

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Darren_O

The colour scheme is familiar:) 

IMG_20170226_231557.jpg

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pete beadle

Hi Darren

Funny you should say that.......

I've always wondered if anyone had ever used the extended tips from an Alpina Magic to make the ultimate bitsa flying wing!

Regards

Pete

BARCS1702

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Andy_B

My Alpina   doing its thing in County Kerry   2010 

Chris_2010_day48.jpg

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