Monday, December 10, 2007
New Toy -
One of our local instructors, Tom M. has taken delivery of a used winch. He has plans to install it in his ski boat so we can fly at Lake San Antonio. I love the idea (since I got a taste of some real acro at my SIV course in Oct.) I went to his house, last weekend, & helped him modify & weld the unit so that it would fit into the boat.
When finished with the mods, I mentioned that it might make sense to try the winch out in my truck to eliminate the natural "fiasco factor" that is added anytime you involve a boat in an endeavor. Tom responded enthusiastically, so we drilled holes in my Tundra & mounted the unit. I chopped the legs off a lawn chair to use as a control operator's station, which worked surprisingly well.
Sunday afternoon we scouted for the perfect site to test the rig. We didn't find that site, but settled for a dirt road out in East Nipomo. Tom laid out his wing & Peter drove while I manned a hydraulic valve that I was completely unfamiliar with.
We managed a safe launch & climb to around 150-200' before a splice in the used line let go. Tom made a safe landing with his share of the line. We proved the concept & are comfortable with the winch's design & function. The sun was setting so we packed up -
Now we need to get comfortable with its use & finish the installation in the boat. We also need to find excellent spots to tow on land.