Huh, where do I start? After nearly years of designing, building, fabricating, and perspiration, Oblio finally hit the water! No, I don't mean that literally, except for some testing :-) Saturday, Oct. 18th, I woke up pretty early and started on some mods to the trailer, and reworked the thrust throttle. After the throttle was hooked back up, I started the Geo and hovered around a bit. "Hmm, what's going on." I thought. The very first time I started the geo, it ran great. Great throttle response and smooth throughout the whole throw. Now, above half throttle, it's bogging down. I decided to go ahead with the first flight anyway. After all, there aren't many situations when full throttle is needed. I wanted to see how this hover performed on the water. At around 2:30, Dennis Alm (Weber), Dave Schneider, Terry Tousignant (UH-18SP) and I arrived at the North lake boat landing in Hastings. We unloaded Oblio, creating quite the dust cloud, and I hit the water for a short test run. Oblio really picks up and goes, even with only half throttle! It has good rudder authority, and is VERY stable. I dropped the lift a few times at speed to see how the plow characteristics are and was pleasantly surprised. That plow plane is something else! The craft dropped to the water and planned just like a boat. No sudden jolt, just a steady predictable speed decrease. Terry said that the water curled up under the nose and looked much like a boat. After playing around, I decided to make a short run to see how it handled at speed. Again, it's very stable, and at around 38 (per Dennis's GPS) mph, still felt good. Without anymore throttle, that was the top speed.....for now. After turning around, the engine started to fade. I lost more and more throttle and speed, eventually dropping down to around 10 mph or so before making it back to the landing. Hey, I made it back! LOL To make a long story short, I'm having carb issues which will be addressed shortly. Until then, I'm pretty satisfied with Oblio's handling performance. It did pretty much everything I designed it to do which is always a plus. I think this will make a great cruising, utility, and all around fun craft once the carb is sorted out!
Below are a few pics, but no action shots. I didn't expect my first and only flight to last 10 minutes.