the cloud tramp home page
The 22nd Charles Hampson Grant Memorial International Mass Launch Of Cloud Tramps
GRANT MIMLOCT 2017
We are promoting this event to celebrate the contributions made by Charles Grant to the development of our hobby. We hope that as many people as possible will make a Cloud Tramp and join in the simultaneous launch on Saturday, August 5, 2017. The Launch Time will be 1700 hrs British Summer Time (GMT + 1 hour), so individual participants will have to calculate the appropriate local time at their venue [ New York, 1200 hrs; California, 0900 hrs; Sydney 0400 hrs, etc. ]
GRANT MIMLOCT 2017 is not a competition and there are no prizes. We hope participants will enjoy the fun of building and flying the Cloud Tramp, as well as taking part in this unique event, which attracted 141 participants from all over the World in 2016.
Please let us know if you take part in GM 2017 so that your name can be included in the official report.
make a cloud tramp
The Cloud Tramp was the last manifestation of Charlie Grant’s basic stick rubber model for beginners and appeared in Model Airplane News, August, 1954. These models were intended to illustrate scientific principles of design, trimming and stability. The Cloud Tramp can be built very quickly and flies well. A copy of the plan [ half-size, with some full size parts ] can be downloaded. Save it to hard disk and open it with a suitable application so that it can be printed at the correct A4 (11″ x 8.5″ USA) size. Size it so the wing chord is 3″. The text of the accompanying article can be read on Garry Hunter’s excellent website.
Two articles about Charles Grant and the Cloud Tramp have appeared in the magazine Free Flight Quarterly, Issue No. 2, January 2002, page 18 and Issue No. 3, April 2002, page 19. Back issues are available on CDs.
Lastly, why not decorate your CT with an authentic Charlie Grant autograph, or even better, this neat Graphic specially drawn by Iain Paterson. Just import it into a Microsoft Word document or equivalent, adjust to the size you want, then print onto tissue and dope/glue it in place.
cloud tramp kits
A Laser cut Cloud Tramp kit is available from George Bredehoft in the USA. He emailed to say:
I make them in small batches and can provide overseas. Of course, combined orders will save on shipping.
Orders should be placed on the website (regardless of apparent stock-on-hand).
I offer a balsa prop, cut to the specs in Charles Hampson Grant’s book – where he describes and defines the Cloud Tramp. On my site, I offer a “combo” pack of the kit plus the prop blank, giving the buyer a discount when they order the combo.
A&DB Models in Great Britain makes a kit, at one time available from Flitehook at email@example.com
modifications and suggestions
The prop shaft bearing can be modified to aid trimming – have a look at some ideas that Pete Money has collected, including a neat adjustable system developed by Bob Morris, and the alternative system that Bob Kopksi uses. Pete has also forwarded some suggestions for improving the wing construction and fixing. See also our suggestions on EndlessLift. (This construction was adopted by George Bredehoft for his Volare kits.) If your CT needs a D/T, Roland Frid has developed a neat system. If you fancy a change from rubber power, have a look at Tony Overton’s alternatives or even try an enlarged R/C version like Den Saxcoburg.
previous mimloct reports
Have a look at Colin Hutchinson’s photopage of the 2012 event. Look at the 2011 phtopage. There are several videos featuring Cloud Tramps on YouTube! Just type Cloud Tramp into the search box to find them.
Mike Parker compiled a report of GM 2015 from the various anecdotes submitted by participants. Please feel free to print copies for circulation to those folks who are not yet part of the www community.
If you want a full size CT plan specially drawn by Bob Jones, click HERE.
See the Epsom Downs Model Aircraft Club fly their Cloud Tramps here EDMAC.
NEW! A CLOUD TRAMP MUG is available on eBay, type Cloud Tramp Mug into the search box. Mike Parker has one of these and they are very nice quality.
2017 MIMLOCT Reports
Latest tally finds 131 participants.
Well, got our noon flight in, about 20 ft because of a 30 mph breeze. Had to sort out a med insurance problem, took $5 off my phone credit and took up to 11:55, so just time to get out to the yard, wind and “fly (?)”
So reporting, Carol and Neil Dennis, 12:00 Mimloc flight.
I made about a one minute flight when the camera said 9 AM. Got home and found the clock disagreed with the camera. I guess the camera doesn’t automatically correct for daylight savings time? I thought it did that. So I was early. Just as well, the wind was picking up and it had drifted all the way across the small field. Any higher or later and it would end in a tree. Two big dogs came out on the field and came over to investigate. Earlier a medium dog had chased it. Don’t want to take any chances with dogs.
Gary Hinze, San Jose, CA USA
I made flights earlier with nice conditions and will fly it again this afternoon. Took some pictures and a short video.
Took out two CT’s, one scratch built and a Volare model. Wind was strong.
The grass at the field was blowing flat, should have gone home but hey’ we’re now.
Takes two hands to hold the model, the wind wants to fold the wings.
It’s 11:46am, tried the scratch built model and the wing mount broke landing in 12″ high grass.
Took the other out of the van and same thing. It’s now 11:56am and I’m out of models to fly. 😫
Best I could do with either was a few seconds and a large figure 9.
I tried, Gary.
The 2017 Cloud Tramp Mass Launch Report
The 2017 Cloud Tramp Mass Launch had 15 people today at the Yorktown land field.
We arrived at the Yorktown land field today and started trimming out our Cloud Tramps for the mass launch at 12 noon.
Here is the group of flyers lined up ready to fly.
From left to right: Dave Kershner, Dianne Tate, Jim Kelly, Charlotte Kelly, Michael Ose, Winnie Bennett, Bob Bennett, Abram Van Dover, Dave Shuster, Jerry Plassman, Bill Sequira, Richard Davison, Artie Jessup, Joni Sequira & John Tate.
It was a little windy today but we all got in our flights there at same time. After the launch all we all went to Joe & Mimma’s for lunch.
Here is a shot of the group getting their Cloud Tramps ready for flight:
Winding up the motors getting ready to launch:
Here is a blurred shot during the launch:
Another Cloud Tramp Mass launch is in the books.
The McCook Field Sqn of the Flying Aces Club in the Dayton, Ohio area flew our Cloud Tramps today. We flew at Jackass Flats Field. Flyers were left to right: Frank Scott, Val Dahlem, Mary Scott, Jo Campbell, and Stu Cummins.
Thank you for taking this over and thanks to Pete and Mike for the many years they sponsored it. Please use my attached photo and this information as you see fit.
Many Thanks and Best Regards,
Stu Cummins, McCook Secretary.
What was the Hi time of the day? – Free Flight Hank in Omaha
It is not a contest. Although everybody tends to treat it as such. No times. – Bob Bennett
I think there was a specific time everyone was supposed to launch. – Bill Kuhl
Theoretically it is simultaneous worldwide. Every time zone launches at a different local time. But politicians have screwed up our clocks, so some will not be simultaneous. In my case, the only timepiece I had was my camera, and later I found it was not on local daylight saving time, although the setting said it was. So I was an hour off. I expect it was on time with somewhere and there may have been a few others launching simultaneously on their local time. No one will be disqualified from having fun flying their Cloud Tramp or sharing their experience because of time. The CD will call it an “attempt”. – Gary Hinze
First time this club has taken part, and four members turned up at the Gotham site – myself, Richard Granger, Howard Smith and Andrew Hewitt (sign-in sheet is attached). Despite the very inconsistent and unfavourable weather forecasts we have had lately conditions were quite good – light westerly wind and some sunshine. All the models were on their first time out. Mine and Richard’s flew straight off the board, but Howard’s needed some desperate last-minute trimming. He had only just finished the model and drove to Gotham with his car heater on to make sure the glue was dry. The actual mass launch went off perfectly.
Everyone enjoyed the event and hopefully the turnout will be better next year.
As soon as I get a moment to upload them I’ll send you a few pictures.
The winter flu hit some of us this time and we were down to 3 hardy souls. Paul Evans, Don Spray and Ricky Bould made it to the forecourt of the Auckland War Memorial Museum for the 0400 launch. The temperature was a mild 10 deg C but there was an edge on the fresh easterly wind. We had a quick flight, and as a result of a lull at launch my model vanished over the brow of the bank fortunately in a straight line so retrieval was not difficult. We depower our CT with only 4 X 1/8 motors and they still perform well enough. A quick photo this time with the self timer working is attached . Just to add spice to the proceedings I managed to leave my Iphone behind after using it to angle the camera. So there was a quick trip back to site to retrieve it. I was still in bed for a lie in by 0445. Again a feeling of satisfaction that we were able to attend.
I took a short video of one of my flights on Saturday: https://youtu.be/89gnwL6qx7c
Not a good launch while holding the camera but it recovered.
I tried flying again in the afternoon but a gust of wind broke the wing.
I just pulled the plane out for the first time this year and flew it Saturday. Last year it snapped the fuselage on the first flight so this year wanted to get pictures and video before breaking it. A gust of wind snapped a wing off on the first flight in the afternoon.
I have received several MIMLOCT reports and will be posting them to EndlessLift as time permits.
I made a couple videos and wasn’t going to post them because they weren’t especially impressive, but thinking about it now, they, or one of them, may have some instructional value regarding flying in small places. Fortunately there was only a slight wind drift where I was flying.
I had the same experience you had with the camera and the launch. I had a stall and a recovery that hit the ground.
Still enough turns, with another 100 hand wound, that I got off a good flight.
I am using a Cannon PowerShot A1200 which has little buttons that react to the slightest touch. It must be handled very carefully to avoid changing the settings. It has to be ready to go before the launch. I set it up and push the shutter button. Hold the plane in launch attitude with the camera hand blocking the prop, camera running. Move the camera hand aside, step forward, light push to get the plane up to speed, then the struggle to find the viewfinder and get the plane in view. Left eye points the camera, right eye follows the plane. When the views coincide, little plane overlaps big plane, I know I have the plane in the viewfinder. I let it run a couple seconds after I see the tail pop up on landing. I can’t operate the stopwatch at the same time, so I time the flight later on viewing the video.
I made another flight to get it a bit higher, but not too high, because the wind was picking up. It got up high enough to make a good overfly, so this is worth publishing. In this case, the camera batteries died during the flight. It made another 3/4 lap.
I have my plane trimmed for slowest descent and about a 100′ right circle. Prop shaft has no down or side thrust. Rudder attached with 3 pieces of thin iron wire like you get from vegetable ties, set for right turn. The rudder is 2″ tall and 1/2″ wide at root, which is 1/4″ above stick. Wire ties on right side. Trailing edge at root is set 1/16″ to right and fixed with a drop of glue once desired setting is found.
I notice your plane makes a pretty tight circle. Problem with that is it must fly with a pretty steep bank. A steep bank produces a sideslip which is a downward motion. It means the plane is flying fast and falling fast, both of which use up turns and energy more rapidly than desired. Trimming for a larger circle means wings more level, slower speed. This will keep your plane in the air for a longer flight.
Flight duration is controlled by two primary factors: available energy and rate at which energy is used. Duration is available energy divided by rate of use. Available energy is what is recoverable from the motor and passes through the propeller. Specific energy, weight of motor and turns, together with propeller efficiency are the factors to consider on this part of the equation. Sizing the motor, length and cross section, influences how much of the available energy gets used; too thick a motor wastes energy in a steep, inefficient climb, followed by a rapid descent, too thin a motor will have turns left on landing. Rate of use of energy is sinking speed times weight. Sinking speed is controlled by the design and trim of the aircraft. Once the plane is built and trimmed, those factors are pretty much given, unless you change motor weight or the plane picks up water from a damp lawn. You have some control over trim, and therefore sink speed, with wing placement relative to CG, turn radius and angle of bank.
Launching with a slight right bank will reduce the tendency to stall. The pullup will be to the side, in the direction you want to go, the recovery is a rollout to level flight rather than a full stop and tailslide or a fall. Forward motion is preserved with only a tiny loss of energy. With the correct right bank angle, this will produce a nice climbing turn and a high rollout.
I have been obsessively pursuing Brownian motion videos with my new microscope. After about two dozen tries, I have a pretty good video of watercolor paint pigments doing the random dance. I intend this for a post on EndlessLift on the elements of fluid mechanics for flight.
It was a touch windy on the North Norfolk Coast in the UK, but bang on the dot of 5 PM BST on Saturday we launched our Cloud Tramps.
And to prove it, here are the pics!!
Ray and Wendy Millard
What is that in the grass to the left?
Looks like a great place to fly!
Attached is a photo of the KEYSTONE RADIO CONTROL Club, Franconia, PA 2nd Annual Cloud Tramp Mass Launch on Sunday at noon. Yes, winds were 15mph and Denny who launched way out in the soybean field won the last down title.
Douglas Babb, flying Mike Cross’s CT
Bruce Fenstermacher with Ginger
950 W. Valley Forge Road
King of Prussia, PA 19406
Here enclosed please find all the photos, including individual ones, from Gruppo Falchi, Bergamo, Italy, to accompany comments below.
There are 9 in the group photo plus 1 Beppe Moschini who launched his CT from a place near his residence at the seaside .
Best regards, Paolo Rossi
Wasn’t sure if you had received my two e-mails as being a new venue this year. I launched one Cloud Tramp which turned out to be a ten second flight. Mother nature decided to let a real down poor of rain let go at launch which with gravity brought everything back to terra firma quite quickly. Thanks Mike Parker.
Steve Robbins and Dick Roddy flew Cloud Tramps at 11 AM on Saturday, August 5, 2017 in Houston, Texas
I’m chiming in a bit late, but I participated as well. I only managed a poor flight of around 3 seconds. Breezy conditions frustrated my earlier trimming attempts and the memorial time flight.
Bargle AKA Butch Brookshier
29 September, 2017
This was just called to my attention because of the story on the Epsom Downs Model Aircraft Club Cloud Tramp story on pages 20-21. Click on the October New Clarion icon in the left column and click on the October 2017 link on the page that opens. There is much else of value in this publication.