Joan gives a description of the equipment she used to learn to fly.
An electronic communication device is fitted to the glider. The student pilot receives text instructions from the instructor.
The equipment consists of 2 boxes one for the student with a text message display and one for the instructor with 16 commands to choose from. The boxes are connected by a cable.
The instructor selects the command by pressing a button. A change in the display message is indicated to the student by a vibrating alarm. The 16 instructions can be reprogrammed to suit the student’s progress. The instruction “I have control” has a red button so that the instructor can quickly take over if necessary.
I used the equipment in K7 and Puchacz gliders. In the late 1990s I demonstrated it in Lille France at a Deaf pilots rally. We used it at a Deaf pilots day at Hus Bos.
The equipment survived spin exercises in a Puchacz. I only ever had one problem in a K7 in the early days. The instructor forgot about the red button. He pressed “open airbrake” command by mistake and we wrestled with the airbrake until he remembered the red button “I have control”. I laugh about it now.
Joan fly’s at The Gliding Centre at Husbands Bosworth Airfield.