Wood Crafters
Dedicated to those that build and fly wood R/C Sailplanes

Wood Crafters Photo Album and Report

The 5th annual Wood Crafters event is in the books, the fun meter was pegged and I saw lots of smiley faces. This event offers something for everyone, but the best of it is the friendship and camaraderie we all share.

Thursday and Friday most folks flew the ladder and the longest flight task, others flew the Scale aerotow events and some flew just for fun. We use electric retrievers on our winches and they were kept humming from start to finish. Jack Smith and Rick Miller have operated the winches from the very fist WC and do a fantastic job. The Friday night dinner guest speaker was Ken Bates, his subject was "Converting Sailplanes to Electric Power". Ken supplied hand outs for future reference, he was highly informative and we all learned the golden rule for powering a sport sailplane. Thank you very much Ken. As a side note, Sky Bench will have Ken's Windlord design kit (flying wing with huge wing area) available and Ken is going to build his with electric power.

Winners of the Ladder Event
Ladder winners, L-R, First place: Joe Albridge, Second: Chris Jett, third: Greg Smith.

Winner of the Longest Flight Event
Longest Flight winner: Joe Albridge

Some may say, Wood Crafters is just a bunch of old guys with woody sailplanes, but if you look at the above pixs, it is obvious this isn't true. The fact is, all the people that help this old guy make this event happen are the oldie but goodie group and the flyers are on the relatively young side of the age scale.

Wood Crafters receives absolutely no press coverage from the Magazines, little support from clubs, even most of the participants don't mention it on the internet, but the people keep coming back year after year. There is a growing number of clubs sponsoring woody events and I hope this continues.

Saturday and Sunday is the Grand Championship contest and the end of four days of scale aero tow. Whereas it was on the windy side Thursday and Friday, Saturday and Sunday were beautiful with blue skies and easy flying conditions. We flew eight rounds of 8 minute duration with the usual 25 foot landing tapes and had four size classes. The total number of entrants in all four classes was 63.

Very early Thursday
Thursday morning, bright and early, eager faces waiting for Jack Smith to set up the winches and retrievers from my fun box van.

Two wings ready
Ken Bates is always first to be ready to fly.

Rich Gary's tow plane
Gary Bussell's tow plane.

Rich Ian's tow plane
Ian's tow plane.

Richard, Bill G Thursday
Bill Grenoble; what am I supposed to be doing ???

Very early Thursday
The very early birds arrive Thursday, watch Jack unload my fun box for awhile and then ask........where is the coffee?

Red Sagitta 900
Sanford Searl's Sagitta 900

Ray launching red Big Bird
Ray Working the Ladder event.

Pat helping Chris launch
The Jett family, L-R: Pat, Ed, and Chris.

Prepping for aerotow
L-R: Gary Bussell tow pilot, Ken Shaw, Gordon Pearson checking his Pionyr, Ian helping (he is a great) and Dave Shaw keeping it level.

Aerotow launch
Gary and Gordon doing their thing.

Joe lauching his B.O.T.
Joe Albridge launching his Bird of Time.

Reading lauching a Challenger
Greg Smith working the ladder event with his Challenger.

Ray and Bud
Ray congratulating Bud Green with his OLY ll for his choice of sailplane, actually, Bud has many woodys in his hanger.

This link will open Bob Kartman's photo web site. Plenty of pix, but with a little less quality than Bob's originals which will appear on this page soon. Use the "Watch DOT Photo Show" to create a slide show of Bob's pix. You can order prints of your favorite photos from Dot Photo that should match the quality of Bob's originals.


Thanks Bob
Ray Hayes
Home of Wood Crafters

Launch of a Grand Esprit
Scale planes
Bob Robertson launching his Grand Esprit. Wings level, perfect launch technique for a woody. Pix is one of many by Bob Kartman with his telephoto camera, the buildings in the background are a thousand feet away.

Crowd walking toward the winches
Looks like a gathering at the Pelican's Club in Port Richey, FL with all the tropical shirts plus Bruce Herider is wearing a Tangerine T'.

Most guys took there turn at the winches, at times, knowing the air was down, but what the heck, it is all about fun.

Ready to launch Starting launch The release
Proper Launch Technique
Tom Scully launching his Challenger. It has been a real pleasure watching Tom become a premier pilot starting from a Mid South contest back in the nineties. He is also and outstanding builder of woodys. Hats off to Tom.

Looking at the plane pits
Paul Weise checking the competition.

Ray holding his Challenger Challenger on the line
Liftoff Challenger on the top of the line
Ray and his Challenger, hook it up and launch. Some have asked what the number 29 on the side of the Challenger is about. I built this Challenger for the AMA Nostalgia contest before Wood Crafters was started and wanted to make it as NOS as possible, so it has a Kraft Radio sticker, an old NSS (National Soaring Society) decal, and my old 29 East Coast Soaring Society membership number dating back to the very early seventies.



Sky Bench Aerotech 

Ft. Wayne, Indiana 46804