Landings

A discussion restricted to the topic of hang gliding.
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Jim Rooney
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Post by Jim Rooney »

Can you do a Zen landing from the base bar because you don't flare?
You do flare with the Zen landing.... it's just a very progressive and smooth flare... there just isn't a "time" that you "start".

I would not advise attempting it from the basebar.
It is technically possible to land from the basebar with many/most techniques as it is the timing of the flare that matters most. The reach of the flare just changes how critical the timing is. From the basebar, you need to have your timing pretty perfect. I've seen it done but I won't attempt it.

Hands at ear height tends to work best for the flare.

Jim
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Paraglider Collapse
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Post by Paraglider Collapse »

Most consistent landing problems I see are:

1) waiting too long before flare

2) slowing the glider too much before flare (same thing really)

3) letting the glider get too far ahead before flare - no available arm extension left to flare (again, same thing)

4) outward flares (rather than upward) from too horizontal of a pilot position (because they did all the above)

5) dropping the flare, allowing the glider to speed up and out front in its effort to regain flying speed

I'm really tired of watching YouTube anemic-flare, run-in landings (death in western sagebrush country). Pilots are afraid to commit to a full, hard flare.
Flaring slowly allows the glider to climb up and out front of the pilot. "Crescendo" my ass...flare that bitch NOW! No glider in the universe will climb out with the nose pointed straight up vertically.

This from a pilot who hasn't changed a downtube since the mid 1980's, landing regularly in some of the most challenging rough, rocky, gusty, hilly, rotor-filled canyon desert thermal conditions.
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Steve Forslund
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Post by Steve Forslund »

Paraglider Collapse wrote:.

This from a pilot who hasn't changed a downtube since the mid 1980's, landing regularly in some of the most challenging rough, rocky, gusty, hilly, rotor-filled canyon desert thermal conditions.
Yeah that picture looks like an awful lz

Steve
Steve Forslund
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BilleFly
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Post by BilleFly »

Paraglider Collapse wrote: ...
..."Crescendo" my ass...flare that bitch NOW! No glider in the universe will climb out with the nose pointed straight up vertically.

This from a pilot who hasn't changed a downtube since the mid 1980's, landing regularly in some of the most challenging rough, rocky, gusty, hilly, rotor-filled canyon desert thermal conditions.
Do that on a Rigid ; your going for a ride !!

And second : it's Very difficult taking "Anything" seriously, from a guy
with a user-name like Paraglider Collapse ??



Bille
GOOD RUSH !!!
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Ksykes
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Post by Ksykes »

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Ascaro
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Post by Ascaro »

At 0:29 you can see the banner. With all that wind,everything is totally zen!! He touches the right wingtip,anyway.
...Ascaro!!!
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Jim Rooney
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Post by Jim Rooney »

Ok, I've finally found a good description of how to do the "Zen" landing...

As you would expect, it's subtle and deceptively simple. It also has a high penalty for error if you get it wrong... basically, you'll power-whack.
That said...

As with all good landings, it starts with a good approach.
Faster than trim all the way down into ground effect.
Wings level.
As you slow in ground effect, start a very subtle climb.
Here's the trick... keep the glider climbing.

That's it.
Just keep it climbing.
It doesn't matter how much it's climbing (although I recommend not getting higher than you want to fall)... just that it's climbing.

What will happen is that as you trade speed for lift to continue to climb, the tradeoff happens exponentially.
So at the beginning, you'll push out ever so slightly to climb but by the end, you'll be pushing out very rapidly to keep climbing even slightly.

It is a very similar technique to the creshendo flare or "two step" but with less abrupt changes.
There is no "flare" for example... the glider just flies up a hill till it gives up.

This is also why uphill landings are so easy... you're practically doing this technique without knowing it.

The danger here is that if you don't stall those tips... you're going for a very painful whack... you've climbed up and stalled the root but not the tips... the tips take over and point that nose at the earth from however high you've climbed.

If you haven't mastered the two step, I would not recommend attempting the Zen as you can severely damage yourself.
Jim
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Flying machine
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Post by Flying machine »

Jim Rooney wrote:Ok, I've finally found a good description of how to do the "Zen" landing...

As you would expect, it's subtle and deceptively simple. It also has a high penalty for error if you get it wrong... basically, you'll power-whack.
That said...

As with all good landings, it starts with a good approach.
Faster than trim all the way down into ground effect.
Wings level.
As you slow in ground effect, start a very subtle climb.
Here's the trick... keep the glider climbing.

That's it.
Just keep it climbing.
It doesn't matter how much it's climbing (although I recommend not getting higher than you want to fall)... just that it's climbing.

What will happen is that as you trade speed for lift to continue to climb, the tradeoff happens exponentially.
So at the beginning, you'll push out ever so slightly to climb but by the end, you'll be pushing out very rapidly to keep climbing even slightly.

It is a very similar technique to the creshendo flare or "two step" but with less abrupt changes.
There is no "flare" for example... the glider just flies up a hill till it gives up.

This is also why uphill landings are so easy... you're practically doing this technique without knowing it.

The danger here is that if you don't stall those tips... you're going for a very painful whack... you've climbed up and stalled the root but not the tips... the tips take over and point that nose at the earth from however high you've climbed.

If you haven't mastered the two step, I would not recommend attempting the Zen as you can severely damage yourself.
Jim
Let it keep climbing...

http://youtu.be/vPkphpUvD1w
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NMERider
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Post by NMERider »

Golly, it's been a Tad over 11 months since the last post in the greatest thread in the history of hang glider online forums and what better time than now to add simple cheat to the mix.
By 'cheat' I am referring to the use of anatomical curb feelers as an aid to monitoring near-ground proximity and as an adjunct to performing a more effective ground skim.
To that end I went for a couple of flights two days ago with the expressed intention of landing with long-ish skims and the tips of the toes of my Merrell trail running shoes caressing the turf along the way.
I even enjoyed the added bonus of unusual airflow during each landing setup which necessitated doing unorthodox approaches unless I wanted to include downwind skills along with altitude sensing tactile radar.
After I posted the video at 3AM that night I was surprised at the number of hits it received. It even garnered one dislike vote from some hater, troll or twat.

So why would anyone even want to perform a long, low skim with his or her toes touching the surface anyway? For me the reasons are pretty straightforward:

In my case I suffer from poor spacial orientation and 3D perception. In other words I barely know where the ground is in proximity to me and too often blow landings by getting into a mush while too high.
If I skim with my toes then my feet are far enough under me and knees bent so if the wind suddenly dies, switches or reverses I can promptly start taking running steps if and as needed to keep lateral control and prevent a whack or ground loop in the process.
It's a lot easier for me to do a good flare and hold it all the way until the stinger and/or my feet touch down. I don't get that sick feeling that I've just jumped off of a picnic bench backwards then take back the flare.
I can better focus on feeling the back-pressure build up as the airflow begins to to separate from the upper surface and the glider goes into mush and starts to settle.

Anyhow, I envy those pilots who execute umpteen flawless landings time and again. In my case I need to cheat and so over the course of seven years of bad and good landings the one trick that has given me more good landings in conditions good and bad and during periods of physical and mental fatigue has been having the tips of my toes brush the surface during my skim. BTW - I don't do Cirque du Soliel show landings. Not interested.

Caveat: Obviously I don't want my toe striking a rock at 35mph so there are limits to its application. I figure that the more I use it the more I'll do a good low skim in general, with or without the curb feeler hack.

Anyhow, here's the result: https://youtu.be/x_YLJzdE43I Hopefully, one or two other similarly problematic pilots such as myself out there may benefit from it.
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JohnFritsche
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Post by JohnFritsche »

Very nice landings. The only problem I have with that ground-skimming low enough to drag my toes is that all of me is closer to the ground, and I imagine there's a higher possibility of smashing my face into the ground if something were to go wrong.
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