Plum Island Jet Rally

Weather was looking rather dull early in the week, but improved as the event drew near. I was still carrying waste in the tanks from the Nova Scotia trip, so I decided to arrive early and stay at a nearby campground. This allowed me to dump the tanks in the morning, starting the event with a ‘clean slate’ so to speak. Being the sole person at the campfire that evening was nice as it allowed me to reflect on the last few months. But it was also way too quiet. I do like my quiet time, but I am a social person and missed the interaction. But that would be corrected over the next 4 days.

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Plum Island had various signs and plaques in the spectator areas so the public could understand what the event was all about. The airport is right on a main road, and the event so prominent to traffic that we had a steady stream of spectators all day.

After dumping the tanks in the morning, I stopped at McDonalds for a breakfast sandwich and coffee. McDonalds coffee never fails to disappoint. They are consistent, I’ll give them that. I arrived at the event about 20 minutes later, where I immediately started a pot of coffee on arrival.

The nights were cool, and days comfortable. Lots of non-stop action with jets constantly in the air. While it was a small event compared to many, the number of flights each day remained high. Something the spectators appeared to appreciate.

The Roadtrek is still delivering great service with only routine maintenance. Very cozy micro studio apartment on the road for events like these. But I was without propane due to a need to replace one of the LP hoses for a suspected leak. So I emptied the LP tank and shut off the propane. I used my trusty Honda EU2000i generator which ran no-stop for 4 days to run the refrigerator. I can’t say enough good things about the Honda EU series of generators. Never a hiccup, they just run, and run, and run, all while only sipping gas.

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While the L-39 didn’t fly, it didn’t sit idle. It performed some maintenance, updates, and spent time tracking a pneumatic leak on the retracts.

Unfortunately, the L-39 didn’t make it in the air due to a number of reasons. But RC pilots  are a close knit community of people that share the same passion, and I was offered the use of others airplanes so that I could still fly. It’s this kind of spirit that makes this a great hobby. I met new people, made new friends, still got in some stick time, and overall had a great time.

A few people from my local club came to check out the event on Saturday. My daughter also came to visit and Friday and Saturday, as did a close friend. I had to keep getting more and more guest passes that they were all kiddingly known as ‘Steves entourage’. Not a way to keep a low profile 🙂  It was beautiful weather for the event, and they got to see a number of jets flying all day long.

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Assembling an aircraft for flight. Generally the wings are removable to allow for transportation, and sometimes the stabilizers and rudders are also removable.

Evenings were spent similar to other events, around a campfire, talking airplanes, telling jokes, and making connections. The event ended with a Saturday night pot luck dinner, with about 25-30 people staying for the campfire.

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Mario spent some time around the campfire with us. I think he was brought by Larry Roper.

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Grants ‘hotel’ for the night. Other then the coyote story he has to tell, it was a pleasant night for tenting. Cool nights and gorgeous sunrises.

Winter is approaching, my flying season is nearing its end, and already I can’t stop thinking about next season. It’s going to be a long winter. Only a few more events this year and the season winds down. So I’ll just have to build a new airplane to keep me busy and involved int the hobby.

Here are some other images from the event;

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I believe this is a BVM Bandit, although not positive. It flew very well.

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This is Jeff Lynds gorgeous ‎CT-114 Tutor in the Canadian Snow Birds colors. It flew beautifully and very scale.

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The nose hatch opened to expose the various operating systems. Fill connectors for fuel, smoke, and air fill valves for the pneumatic gear and brakes, electronic connectors and switches for the turbine EDT, batteries, receivers, and data access.

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Glen fired up his turbine one night just to see the flames. You don’t see the flame during the day, but very obvious at night. Note the red hot color of the stainless steel nozzle.

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Airplanes are tucked away at night in a locked full scale hangar. Always nice to see all the RC airplanes in one place, as well as the full scale airplanes we share space with.

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I didn’t miss an opportunity to take a few interesting shots of my own airplane. I just love the lines on the L-39.

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Morning sunrise, coffee, then off to the hanger to retrieve the airplane.

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We were greeted with great sunrises and sunsets most days. Weather turned out great for the entire event.

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Aircraft lined up for a impromptu photo shoot arranged by the Darin. The L-39 is my favorite full scale airplane, so of course I took the photo from this end of the line 🙂

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Another awesome morning sunrise. This was the morning after the coyote incident 🙂

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Larry Roper giving a RC Turbine Jet 101 class to some of the spectators. This happens to be some of the ‘entourage’, a friend and pilot from my local club along with his family.

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Larry Roper from Boomerang Jets answering some questions for the spectators.

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Jeff Lynds spending time with some spectators and guests explaining the aircraft operations.

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Spectator viewing area. Most events have the spectator area well back from the flight light. Due to the layout of Plum Island airport, the spectator area is right on the flight line and just off the road. This gives the spectators a perfect view of the flight line and operations. basically the same view the pilots get from their own canopies and pit area.

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View of the flight line just in front of the spectator area.

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Mario must have had too much to drink, and spent the night by the fire. Although, he doesn’t look too hung over in this image taken first thing the next morning 🙂

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This is what I like about waking up at first light. This was taken from the chair in my pit area while having coffee and watching the sun rise. I could have slept in another hour, but I would have missed many scenes like this.

 

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