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Old 01-12-2011, 09:05 AM   #1
I am: Boolean21
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Have you ever?

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I know (been told) that RC Airplanes are attracted to trees. Who has got one stuck in a tree (or any other location at height) where you've had to retrieve 'em?

How did you gain access, and were you able to accomplish the job safely (I know "safety" is a relative term). I have observed that a lot of people in this hobby are either real young (meaning they have no fear and their "invincability" gland is stuck in overdrive) or are gettin' a tad long in the tooth. I am sneakin' up on the second group, but am lucky enough to have the training and equipment to work at height.

I know a lot of ariel specialists that could be hired at a nominal fee to rescue stuck planes! Maybe I should set up a web site to hook up victims with a recue tech! Wadaya think?
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:08 AM   #2
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Re: Have you ever?

A chain saw works for me, quick and easy.......plus free wood

''engine hoarder''
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:16 AM   #3
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Re: Have you ever?

Yup, that works, UNTIL you land the tree on you OR maybe your CAR!

I doubt there would be much left of any plane after the tree hits the ground! I bought the first one of these in Canada:http://www.ropetekwraptor.com/ for those places where I can't get my Bucket truck into. Yeah, I could go "old school" and hump it up the tree, but thats a lot like work!:

PS: I am NOT trying to make this a business, so I hope the mods don't freak out about this thread! If so feel free to remove it.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:21 AM   #4
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Re: Have you ever?

Didn't think there were any trees in Sask. The humour aside depending on how big the tree is I have used a pole pruner with an extending pole on it. go to about 30 feet. can put a loop on the end and hook around the tail and gently pull the plane out depending on the size. great for smaller electric ones.
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:39 AM   #5
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Re: Have you ever?

I don't imagine that it happens too often, I just shudder to think that someone would risk their life trying to retrieve a plane!

Although IF you showed up back at home without a $500 plane the spouse might take your life anyway!
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:40 AM   #6
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Re: Have you ever?

Didn't think there were any trees in Sask
it only takes one. No matter how unlikely, that plane will find it eventually
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Old 01-12-2011, 09:43 AM   #7
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Re: Have you ever?

I have been stuck up a few trees around our flying field half a dozen times. Not being a climber, we use the long pole method to knock the plane down. Usually, it falls gradually to lower branches & then drops vertically the last 10/15 feet from the lowest branches. Damage depends on whether you can catch it! Have managed to get a plane back from 55 feet using 3 x 8' two by fours & two 15' aluminum swimming pool poles standing on a step ladder! Picture shows one such mission.

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Old 01-12-2011, 10:17 AM   #8
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Re: Have you ever?

Actually, I have had it happen several times, and if you are careful, you can often get the tree too drop not to hard and the plane is ok. Once in retrieving my son's plane, we dropped the tree it was in across a thicket of Hawthorns (not a great idea!) and had then cut each hawthorn out from under the first tree, and pull them clear, one by one with a long rope. Then we went about cutting off the branches on the underside of the first tree until the plane was lowered to where we could reach it. Fortunately the offending tree was an elm that had been dead about 30 years.

A pruning saw on a pole has been useful from time to time as has a 24" bow saw. Chain saws are a tad noisy, and that can be detrimental in certain situations. I also have a hundred feet of braided 1/2" rope that has seen uses in this area from time to time, particularly when it is necessary to get up to height so a branch can be "pruned" to aid in recovery.
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Old 01-12-2011, 12:57 PM   #9
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Re: Have you ever?

My son landed in a tree a few years ago...climbed his way up and brought it down safely. I think the plane was up about 10'. 12 year olds have no fear so it was no biggie. He does have a bit more respect for the shelterbelt now.
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Old 01-12-2011, 01:23 PM   #10
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Re: Have you ever?

A fellow at our club got his plane solidly planted about 60 feet up a tree. It was too dangerous for anyone to climb and too high to reach with thrown objects or poles. I used a compound bow with a string attached to the arrow and put it above and across the plane. It come down easily once I got the arrow in the right place.

Light string that has a very thin profile is needed as it's surprising how much it slows the arrow in flight and reduces range. Personally I'm more the firearms type and think a couple rounds of birdshot would have done just as well but, I doubt the plane owner would have been as thankful.
Hespeler Model Aviators

This is my helicopter. There are many like it but, this one is mine.
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