Wright Stuff C

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by CrayolaCrayon » February 26th, 2020, 10:12 am

lechassin wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 9:25 am
CrayolaCrayon wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 6:03 am
No plane is the same... ever. Two planes built the exact same can perform very differently, from what I've experienced. You have to test what works for you. It's a different path for everyone.
That's been our experience also. Even though we built our planes with machine blocks, and we built the props on a jig, slight variations means each plane trimmed differently. We also have a favorite, whose [small] advantage we don't understand. For sure the biplane is a more complicated build/trim process so that's an obstacle.
The more variables you introduce, the harder it becomes to keep everything the same.
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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by Cornstalk » February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am

I think that the knowledgeable members on here provide an invaluable amount of help and advice, and I would like to thank everyone who does this. I know that without these forums, a lot of students would be lost and not know how to improve their planes. For the next thing I say, I mean it with great respect and no ill-intentions towards anybody. But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? It is my observation that the majority of top tier planes are ones that are assisted by adults/coaches. I don't say this to poop on anybody's parade. But is it really fair to all of those who have to do this on their own? I'm not on this event, but I've seen teammates put countless amount of hours into this event for years but to no avail. Personally, I just don't think its fair for some people to receive the extreme amount of help that that have. I think its totally acceptable for competitors or students to come to experts for advice, but I think that there has to be a line drawn at some point. I know this will probably get a lot of backlash, but it had to be said at some point.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by calgoddard » February 26th, 2020, 11:43 am

NorCalplaya - Increasing the spacing between the wings of a biplane would decrease the aerodynamic interference between the wings and increase the combined lift of the two wings. This may be why the spacing between the wings of the J & H Aerospace WS 2020 biplane is relatively large for a biplane.

lechassin - you asked about the center of gravity (CG) location and the ability of a WS 2020 airplane to recover after a collision (e.g. with a beam or a light fixture). As is typical, the optimum location of the CG on a WS airplane involves a trade off.

A rubber powered free flight model airplane needs pitch stability so that it will automatically correct itself if the nose is too high (stall) or too low (dive). Pitch stability is achieved by locating the CG of the model (with the rubber motor installed) so that it is ahead of the neutral point (NP). How far the CG is ahead of the NP determines the so-called “static margin of stability" of a model airplane. Static margin calculators are available on the Internet. The NP and the corresponding static margin of stability are generally based on: 1) the area of the wing; 2) the area of the stab; and 3) the distance between the wing and stab. The static margin of stability is usually expressed as a percentage of the mean aerodynamic chord (MAC). The further the CG is ahead of the NP the higher the static margin will be and the more stable the flight will be, but at a cost. The difference in the angle of attack between the wing and the stab (decalage) will have to be increased as the CG is moved forward and this makes the flight less efficient. If the CG is too far forward an excessive amount of decalage will be required. However, if the CG is too far rearward, the model will become difficult to trim and may not recover from stalls and dives.

Let me summarize the dilemma in deciding where to locate the CG of a WS airplane as follows. Locating the CG relatively far forward will yield a quick recovery, but require a higher decalage, which results in higher drag, and a shorter cruise and descent. Locating the CG relatively far rearward will yield a poor recovery, but require a lower decalage, which results in lower drag, and a longer cruise and descent. Locating the CG between the forward and rearward extremes will result in a compromise, i.e. a reasonable recovery and intermediate length of cruise and descent.

Prior to the WS 2020 season, your official WS score was always the higher flight time of two official flights, plus any bonus. For many years I coached my students to put in one conservative “no-touch” flight as their first official flight to get a good score in the books. Then, for their second official flight, they were supposed to increase the launch torque to get as close to the lowest obstruction as possible, without touching. Sometimes the airplane would hit, and sometimes it would not hit, on the second flight. If the airplane collided with a beam on the second official fight, it would typically drop five or six feet before recovering. Due to minimal climb thereafter the second official flight involving a collision would be top ten out of sixty teams, but generally not good enough for first place. However, I recall that one of the last teams that I coached in WS won first place out of 60 WS teams with their conservative first official flight.

My students generally got their longest fight times in WS competitions by having a far rearward CG and by climbing to 80-90% of the available “ceiling height”, i.e. the height to the first obstruction (beam, light fixture, curtain wall, etc.). Hitting overhead obstructions is always a gamble. The airplane may head off toward a wall or a basketball backboard. So, I always coached my WS teams to try for the highest no-touch flights both in practicing and in competition.

In prior WS seasons the stab size was not as severely limited as it is under the WS 2020 rules and therefore it was easier to maintain a reasonable level of static margin of stability. Often overlooked by students and coaches is the fact that the WS rules have never had an overall length limit for the model, at least as far as I can recall. In the past, my students took advantage of this loophole to increase the static margin of stability by having an extremely long tail boom. I can recall that some of their very successful WS airplanes were well over 31 inches long when the maximum rubber motor size was limited to 1.5 grams.

If you are not confident in your ability to consistently and reliably pull off a high climbing “no-touch” flight it would be prudent not to have a relatively rearward CG. Consistently putting in high no-touch flights requires a great deal of experience and can only be accomplished with a reasonable degree of certainty by winding with a torque meter and referencing detailed flight logs. If you expect to encounter turbulence from an HVAC system, you are better off locating the CG relatively far forward.

Well, thanks for reading these explanations. I hope you find them to be helpful.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by jander14indoor » February 26th, 2020, 2:30 pm

Cornstalk wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am
<SNIP> But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? <SNIP>
In my opinion (please note that word!) no. It is inherent in ANY competition that some teams have advantages over other teams in terms of some resource that cannot be equalized. Be it money, expertise, whatever. And there are NO rules that can be written to eliminate this.

Think of it this way, is it against the spirit of the rules that some teams come from wealthy school districts and have more money for coaches, transportation, materials than others? Add to that a school that makes SO a priority for whatever reason?
How is a team from a disadvantaged school (for any of a myriad reasons, size, tax revenue, lack of faculty support, whatever) to compete one on one with such a school?
Is this perhaps the reason you tend to see a repetition of some of the same teams from year to year at nationals, I suspect so.

If you do feel that it is against the spirit, what kind of rule would you write to control it? How would you enforce it? I think any efforts along that line would just shut down forums like this, hurting everyone.

Now, does that invalidate SO and its purpose somehow? Personally I think not. The purpose is to increase STEM education. Even in the disadvantaged schools from a competitive standpoint, I think having SO in the schools is a strong positive. It provides motivation & opportunity for experiences around STEM that students might not otherwise have.

And as you already noted, this forum shows that the advantaged teams at least try to share that with everyone so ALL have the opportunity to improve. I think this is a higher level of what I understand to be a well established effect, increasing parents participation in school activities improves the outcome for ALL students.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by bjt4888 » February 26th, 2020, 2:57 pm

Cornstalk wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am
I think that the knowledgeable members on here provide an invaluable amount of help and advice, and I would like to thank everyone who does this. I know that without these forums, a lot of students would be lost and not know how to improve their planes. For the next thing I say, I mean it with great respect and no ill-intentions towards anybody. But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? It is my observation that the majority of top tier planes are ones that are assisted by adults/coaches. I don't say this to poop on anybody's parade. But is it really fair to all of those who have to do this on their own? I'm not on this event, but I've seen teammates put countless amount of hours into this event for years but to no avail. Personally, I just don't think its fair for some people to receive the extreme amount of help that that have. I think its totally acceptable for competitors or students to come to experts for advice, but I think that there has to be a line drawn at some point. I know this will probably get a lot of backlash, but it had to be said at some point.
Encouraging, and hopefully inspiring young people to achieve excellence is always a good thing.

Read the rules carefully. Coaching is not contrary to the spirit of SO.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by bjt4888 » February 26th, 2020, 3:01 pm

jander14indoor wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 2:30 pm
Cornstalk wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am
<SNIP> But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? <SNIP>
In my opinion (please note that word!) no. It is inherent in ANY competition that some teams have advantages over other teams in terms of some resource that cannot be equalized. Be it money, expertise, whatever. And there are NO rules that can be written to eliminate this.

Think of it this way, is it against the spirit of the rules that some teams come from wealthy school districts and have more money for coaches, transportation, materials than others? Add to that a school that makes SO a priority for whatever reason?
How is a team from a disadvantaged school (for any of a myriad reasons, size, tax revenue, lack of faculty support, whatever) to compete one on one with such a school?
Is this perhaps the reason you tend to see a repetition of some of the same teams from year to year at nationals, I suspect so.

If you do feel that it is against the spirit, what kind of rule would you write to control it? How would you enforce it? I think any efforts along that line would just shut down forums like this, hurting everyone.

Now, does that invalidate SO and its purpose somehow? Personally I think not. The purpose is to increase STEM education. Even in the disadvantaged schools from a competitive standpoint, I think having SO in the schools is a strong positive. It provides motivation & opportunity for experiences around STEM that students might not otherwise have.

And as you already noted, this forum shows that the advantaged teams at least try to share that with everyone so ALL have the opportunity to improve. I think this is a higher level of what I understand to be a well established effect, increasing parents participation in school activities improves the outcome for ALL students.

Jeff Anderson
Livonia, MI
Jeff,

Well stated.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by jinhusong » February 26th, 2020, 4:48 pm

I normally like to help other teams for flying in invitations. You can tell they do not have an expert on that.

BTW, our school will have a building-event only small invitation to help teams in neighbor region.

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by coachchuckaahs » February 26th, 2020, 5:45 pm

Cornstalk wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am
I think that the knowledgeable members on here provide an invaluable amount of help and advice, and I would like to thank everyone who does this. I know that without these forums, a lot of students would be lost and not know how to improve their planes. For the next thing I say, I mean it with great respect and no ill-intentions towards anybody. But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? It is my observation that the majority of top tier planes are ones that are assisted by adults/coaches. I don't say this to poop on anybody's parade. But is it really fair to all of those who have to do this on their own? I'm not on this event, but I've seen teammates put countless amount of hours into this event for years but to no avail. Personally, I just don't think its fair for some people to receive the extreme amount of help that that have. I think its totally acceptable for competitors or students to come to experts for advice, but I think that there has to be a line drawn at some point. I know this will probably get a lot of backlash, but it had to be said at some point.
All science is built upon prior work, either by the team performing the science, or through literature by others. SO competition are no different. If you have continuity of coaches and/or students, that certainly is a lot to build upon. So, if coaches with prior experience are against the spirit of competition, are also students that return for another go at WS? I coach a Home School team with both mid and high school. So some of my Wright Stuff kids have been doing it as long as I have (4 years).

Prior to volunteering to help out, I knew nothing. That first year the kids built 12 or 13 planes, because we were learning the hard way. With a lot of help online, as well as careful logs, we were successful and placed 8th at Nationals. Now my kids have built, competed, and hold records in SO flying events, Limited Penny Plane, and F1D. As I type, they are downstairs building props for F1D. They each have far more flying experience than I do, and they make their own adjustments and decisions. If I see something I make a suggestion, but they select their own rubber (based on data), make adjustments, etc. In WS practice this year, we have two tables set up, one for each plane, and the kids are always trying to out-do each other. I simply orchestrate.

After that trying first year, we settled in on the construction layout of Bill Gowen's Carbon Penny. That is a stout, lightweight platform, easily adopted to WS parameters. After we started using it, Dave got a good close look and his kits have followed suit (carbon LE/TE), and continue to be a highly competitive kit. We generally don;t build kits because our Regionals and State are too early (we are already done with State). However, we are down to building only 2 planes for the year, because the basic platform is robust.

I, and several others, try to share our general guidance. I don;t generally share intimate details that were attained through hard work, but the guidance that led to these solutions is readily shared. Other coaches do similar. Other highly successful schools and coaches are never heard from, which is fine. I gained a lot through interactions and am trying to give back.

Yes, having a coach with a couple of years experience is an advantage, as a starting point. It allows my kids to hit the ground running. But they are successful because they put in A LOT of hours in the gym, logging flights, and perfecting the match of the airplane, rubber, and prop. We used prop AA (27th in sequence) at State last week. We will probably have another few dozen before Nationals. It is work. We expect to log at least 400 flights each year, mostly in rented gymnasiums. But these kids love it, and the hardest thing to do is to get them to quit flying or building when our time is up.

Yup. You hit a nerve.

Proud of my kids, and what THEY accomplish through THEIR hard work. Happy to share my time and tools with them.

Coach Chuck
Coach, Albuquerque Area Home Schoolers Flying Events
Nationals Results:
2016 C WS 8th place
2018 B WS 2nd place
2018 C Heli Champion
2019 B ELG 3rd place
2019 C WS Champion
AMA Results: 3 AAHS members qualify for US Jr Team in F1D, 4 new youth senior records

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by Lorant » February 26th, 2020, 6:42 pm

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Re: Wright Stuff C

Post by pepperonipi » February 26th, 2020, 7:11 pm

Cornstalk wrote:
February 26th, 2020, 11:29 am
I think that the knowledgeable members on here provide an invaluable amount of help and advice, and I would like to thank everyone who does this. I know that without these forums, a lot of students would be lost and not know how to improve their planes. For the next thing I say, I mean it with great respect and no ill-intentions towards anybody. But is it not against the spirit of the rules to have so much help from adults? It is my observation that the majority of top tier planes are ones that are assisted by adults/coaches. I don't say this to poop on anybody's parade. But is it really fair to all of those who have to do this on their own? I'm not on this event, but I've seen teammates put countless amount of hours into this event for years but to no avail. Personally, I just don't think its fair for some people to receive the extreme amount of help that that have. I think its totally acceptable for competitors or students to come to experts for advice, but I think that there has to be a line drawn at some point. I know this will probably get a lot of backlash, but it had to be said at some point.
Ok, first, who has to do this all on their own? There's already 75 pages of discussion about this specific Science Olympiad event for this specific year on this one website. And there's an entire list of sites besides this one. Considering most people have the internet, most people already have access to a good amount of resources. Not to mention, a lot of people are willing to help competitors in need. That's what these forums are for, and some professors/websites will leave contact info for a reason.

Sure, does having a brilliant coach help? Yeah. But do you need one of those? No. (Not trying to sound pessimistic in what I'm about to say.) Unfortunately, life isn't fair. It just isn't. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Sometimes it makes no sense why you win and others lose. However, there's no point on dwelling on this for too long. I think your post brought up a very insightful topic that can be discussed on here, but please don't let that stop you from trying your hardest in this event. Instead of spending time looking at the challenges you might face while others do not, spend that time actually trying to overcome the challenges themselves.

And I get it to some extent, you don't want a competitor's parents/coach to build their plane. I get it. That's obviously ridiculous. But I don't think that is what is being discussed in Cornstalk's post, right?

P.S. I'm no builder. I don't really check this thread much, except occasionally for times like this. I'm not trying to sound pessimistic in my post, and I'm totally open to hearing other thoughts on this. The forums were meant for discussing ideas anyways.
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