When the call came last winter if I wanted to take part in buying a Ka-2 I didn't have to think long, neither did the other partners! I knew the man who restored it, and that made the choice even more easy. This man realy knows his trade! Now this beautifully restored vintage glider is ours. We plan to fly it a lot, local and cross-country. And we'll also take part in the Rallys the VHZ ( Vintage sailplane asosciation Holland ) organises yearly. This year it will be at Venlo, 1 through the 4th of june.
|The first flights have been made last month. I would like to have done it sooner, but the weather and the condition of the airfield didn't allowed it. But flying it for the first time made me forget all the waiting. The handling turned out to be surprisingly light and gentle. With a stall speed of less than 60 kph and a wingspan of 15.0 meters, you can turn it on a dime. A very usefull caracteristic when thermalling those weak thermals that make up the bulk of the flying season. And being so light it will climb like a homesick angel. Ofcourse this all won't change the fact that when gliding to the next thermal it will sink like a brick. But still, cross-country flying is possible with the Ka-2. Not bad for a plane that is more than twice my age!||
The PH-1002 on the day of her first flight in her new colours and registration. A lot of 0painstaking work by a dedicated man. But it's a beautiful sight for sure!
00A Ka-2 in the early days at the Schleicher factory for flight 00testing.
|The PH-1002 was built in 1955 for the Belgian Aircadets, it was registrated then as OO-ZQC. It was built by Alexander Schleicher flugzeugbau for the "wiedergutmachung" after the second world war. This company is still producing top of the line sailplanes like the ASW-28 and the ASH-25 just to name a few. She was designed by the same designer responsible for the famous Ka-8, and the much praised Ka-6, being Rudolf Kaiser. In those days the Ka-2, and the even better Ka-2b where real performers compared to others ships flying around. Ofcourse, with the entry of glassfibres, these wood and linnen planes soon became obsolete. But in the hands of enthousiasts, many of these classics still fly today in great shape! She was succeeded by the Ka-7, then the ASK-13, and with the entry of the ASK-21 the line is complete uptill now.|
The PH-1002, fully restored to pristine condition, still waiting for the big day... (note the blue interior. Even the safetybelts and buckles are blue!)--------------------------------------------------------------->>
The Ka-2 is ready for take-off for the first time in years!
Soon I learned, together with the others, that it was better to set her down with the airbrakes only half opened. (Author at work here!)
Cross County Reports
The first cross-country flights are history! The first time we made an effort to fly from Teuge to Malden and back, this was an assignment for the friendly club competition we have every year. The conditions were blue, but weather reports talked about strong thermals in the afternoon. The start wasn't promising, having released the towcable at 500 meters, we had one very weak thermal, and trying to find a better one we descended to 200 meters, so we had to land and try again later. But the clock struck three, and if we wanted to accomplish any thing we had to go now. So again we went up, and slowly were able to gain some altitude, above Apeldoorn we were at an altitude of 1200 meters, so we decided to go for it and we made our way to the Veluwe. Swinging from thermal to thermal like a monkey in the trees we made our way, and in no time we passed the glider strips of Terlet and moved on to Arnhem. Here the problems began. We crossed the river Rhine at 900 meters, we had to find some more lift, but our efforts were in vain. At 600 meters we finaly found some upward currents, we managed to pass over Elst, and with a lot of fighting over a small industrial area we climbed to a 1000 meters. This gave us some hope of at least landing at Malden. But we couldn't climb any higher, and we had to fly in to the wind. We never found anymore lift and we had to set her down. ( pictures will follow )Only our flight ended only a few kilometers away from Malden in a grass field between Elst and Bemmel. This did yielded the first place in the competion because everyone else returned to the airfield without making it to their turning point.
We took off early in the afternoon, for a return flight to Hoogeveen. The distance is about 120 km. The tow took us to 500 metres and then the fun could begin! It all started great, we climbed to 800 metres quickly but then the thermal threw us out and it was gone, only very low at 300 metres did we find a weak thermal that caried us to 1500 metres growing stronger as we went higher. At that moment we decided to head off to Hoogeveen. The club's LS-3 had the same plan and she passed us quickly. 20 kilometres along the route we had to cross a string of altocumulus clouds, they blocked the sun and no thermals were there to help us. We steered towards some dry dusty farmland, usualy it produces some lift, but not today. The lower we came the more nervous we became. At an altitude of 400 metres we found a little bit lift near our planned landing field. The wind however was blowing us away, and we didn't gain any altitude. We had to set her down in a field of freshly cut grass. The farmers' dog greeted friendly as we opened the canopy. The result was a bit disapointing, but still we had a lot of fun and I learned a lot.
|The conditions weren't promising so the asignment consisted of a triangle of 80 km for the clubclass. The thermals began around 2 o'clock in the afternoon, exactly the time we started. Gradualy we gained altitude over the field of Einhoven. And made our way to the first turningpoint about 30 kilometres away. We made good progress and in no-time we had made it to the second leg. This was more difficult but still we managed to make it having found the only good thermal in the vicinity. The last leg proved to be to long. We didn't find any lift of importance and gradualy we lost our altitude till we had to set her down in the grass of a friendly farmer near Maarheeze.||
Outlanding near Maarheeze.
[ Soaring at Teuge | Home | Cross Country Corner ]