Sunday, August 6, 2023

Lost Plane

Where Are We Today

“The Ridge”

Priceville, Ontario

Last Sunday, July 30th while flying at our club field, I lost my J3 Cub model airplane. I have had this plane for about 20 years, it has a 6ft. wing span and was powered by a Saito Golden Knight FA 82 four stroke engine.

Take off of the fatal flight

Not sure what or why, but lost control and it went straight down. My very first thought is that it was in the bean field across the road, but I was not 100 percent sure as I was quite away from our flying site. Others thought that it had gone down in the corn field on our side of the road.

Three of us set off down the road and entered the corn field where they thought approximately it should be. We also scanned across the top of the corn, hoping that it might be sticking up but no such luck. The corn currently is 8 ft. tall or higher, we decided to come back the next day with my drone and fly over the corn field in hopes of spotting it. We also had a quick look across the bean field, just in case.

Returning Monday, we had no luck with the drone, which meant it had gone down through the stocks. We also started walking the rows of corn in hopes of finding it that way. After a couple of hours, we had to stop and head back home as company was arriving.

On Friday, Ken and I headed back to the field with the drone to search in a different area, still no luck.

Search Area

On Saturday, August 6th.  I returned to the field and along with 4 other club members we started a search by walking, 5 rows part, down the rows of corn from the end closest to the flying field to where we thought the farthest it could be. Some discouraged and one with allergies after some time gave up and headed back to the field. I was determined to find it, if only for the fact that I didn’t want it going through a piece of farm machinery and causing damage.

Thought walking 5 rows apart was to much, so I went back to the start and every two rows from the north end of the field, south to where we thought it should be. After covering 20 rows, I had to leave, only to return Sunday August 6th  to continue the search.

Returning Sunday, I picked up where I left off, walking the rows. I missed my cut off point and ended up walking all the way to the south end of the field. I continued to do this until I was even with the flight line of the flying field, this was as far in that it could be. Just to be thorough, I went back to the first 20 rows that I did the day before and finished walking the rows all the way to the south end. Nothing!!

Cub crash site

I am really discouraged by now but thought I would walk across the road and walk the edge of the bean field just in case.  About half way back, there in the long grass between the ditch and the bean field was my plane. It had come straight down breaking apart with the motor half buried in the ground.

Had to pry motor out of the ground

I picked up the pieces and carried it back to the field, where I took all the servos, receiver, and battery out of it and disassembled the rest. Bringing it home where I will dispose of the wreckage, clean the motor and safe the useable parts for another plane.


Sad that it is beyond repair but very happy that it is found and will not go through any farm machinery.

Thanks for stopping by, comments are always welcome and read. Until the next time, take care.


Thursday, August 3, 2023

Secret Project Reveal

Where Are We Today

“The Ridge”

Priceville, Ontario

Pat has been mentioning, in her blog, a project that I have been working on. She did not want to write about it, as it is mine to explain.


Old/Original Gate. Notice the private property and The Ridge signs.

For about three or four years, I have wanted to replace the heavy iron gate at the entrance to “The Ridge” for something new and lighter in weight. Inspired from our southwest adventures, I came up with a design and plan of how to build and execute its installation.

This is late spring when Duncan cut the posts off at ground level.

First off was the removal of the old gate, which was not an easy task, as it is very heavy. With the help of our good friend Duncan, he and I managed to cut the gate from its hinges and lay it off to the side of the lane. Next, we tried to pull one of the posts out of the ground, by putting a chain around it and pulling with the truck, all it did was bend the post. I should mention that the posts are 4-inch diameter steel pipe with a ¼ inch wall. In the end, we took a grinder and cut the posts off just below the ground surface. Oh, by the way this all started on Mother’s Day weekend.

Duncan really wanted to help with this project, so he was hoping that I would wait and have everything ready to go when they returned for our campout week at the end of July.

So now it is up to me to get prepared for that to happen. First off, was to get rid of the sections of the gate and posts. I borrowed a big trailer into which Pat and I loaded the gate and posts along with a few other pieces of metal and took to the scrap yard where it was weighed. The 600 lb. load net us $60.00.

Posts lined up in what would be their upright position so I could drill the holes thru in a straight line to accept the threaded rod and pipe.

Next, the purchase of the posts and the framing material for the gate. The post design has always stayed the same, but the gate design has changed a couple of times since we first started the project. Initial purchase consisted of

4 – 6x6x8 ft.   2 – 6x6x16 ft. 4 – 4x6x16 ft. 4 – 2x6x8 ft. 2 – 2x4x8 ft. and 1 – 4x4x8 ft. pressure treated lumber.

Step one was to set up two 6 x 6’s, one on top of the other, then put in two 6 x 6 spacers. One at the very bottom and one four feet up, then 3/8 holes were drilled through and threaded rod put in to hold the spacers in place and tight together. This was repeated with a second pair.

Next a 16 ft. 6 x 6 was placed in between each of the above, with the end of the 16 ft 6 x 6 resting on the top end of the highest spacer. Ratchet straps were then wrapped around all 3 - 6 x 6’s and tightened to hold in place. I then drilled two 1-3/8 hole through all three.

The three holes dug, with the 45 gallon barrows filled with cement that held the old posts pulled out
At this time, I needed to get the holes dug for the posts. I had a local gravel pit owner come with his backhoe to dig the new post holes. We discovered why we could not pull the old posts out; they were cemented in 45-gallon drums. The backhoe was able to pull them out of the ground and finished digging my new post holes. Pat and I then put two half drums in the bottom of two holes, slip the new posts down into them and then proceeded to mix and pour cement into them. After the cement set, we proceeded to fill the holes. There is a third hole that was getting a smaller post, it was set next.

Posts in the ground, lined up and mixing the cement to pour into the holes.

You will notice that we rolled the barrel back into the hole to fill it back up.

We waited for our friends Duncan and Patty to return for the campout week at the end of July, he was wanting to help me complete this project. They arrived a few days early, so he and I set to work. First the two sixteen ft. 6 x 6’s posts were taken and the bottom end placed in between each of the posts now in the ground. An 18 inch long x 1 inch diameter pipe nipple was put through the bottom hole of each post and pipe caps threaded on to hold in place. We then attached what would be the top to the other end of these two posts.

Top left pic is the top that goes across from one post to the other. Middle top, ropes attached to the top of each post ready for the pull. Top right is the truck starting to pull the posts up after Duncan and I lifted them so far. Bottom left and right posts are up and secured. Bottom Middle no explanation needed.

From the top of each post, a 50 ft. length of a 1- inch diameter rope was attached and laid up the lane way, tied together at the other end. My 20 ft. towing strap was hooked to the rope and the other end of the strap was hooked to the 5th wheel hitch in the back of the truck.

With the help of our wives, my Pat driving the truck and Duncan’s wife Patty putting in braces where we indicated, Duncan and I started to lift the posts. When we got to the point of not being able to lift any higher, I had attached an 8ft. 2 x 4 to each post, which allowed us to lift higher. At this time, I motioned Pat to slowly drive the truck forward raising the posts to an upright position, as they slipped between the 6 x 6 posts, Pat stopped pulling and the second 18-inch pipe was put in the top hole with the pipe caps put on and tightened.

Duncan and I went and got fence boards for the next phase of the project. First, we made the frame of a two-piece gate and installed them on the posts. Next, we attached the fence boards in the pattern that we wanted. After that the fence portion on each side of the gate was built.

Building the gate frame, Patty  posing, taking the ropes down, Duncan leveling the dirt over the holes and the finished gate.

I am very happy with the outcome of this project and so is Pat. Also, very grateful, of the help from Duncan and Patty, I could not have done without their help.

The old sign posts pulled out will be replaced with new signs on the gate. Duncan and Patty were the first to leave under our new gate.

Ken and Kim were the first to arrive under the new gate.

That’s a wrap for this post, hope it as been worth the wait and I haven’t bored you with a lot of details. Thanks for stopping by, until the next time, take care.


Good night from "The Ridge"