Exceeding Vne with the Lady

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After a beautiful day on Sunday at the park, I finally got some time to fly the Lady - just as a thunderstorm cell was moving in. The first battery (1500mAh) ran me 23+ minutes and was great. Flying over a field, the breeze was steady and gentle. With not enough gusto to go up around again I brought her in and swapped batteries. The second battery is a smaller 1300mAh. Smaller also means lighter. The result was faster climbing (although I also realize I would have reduced flying time). About 10 minutes in, I throttled up once again for another burst of altitude. At this point the wind started picking up and I noticed I was quickly gaining altitude. I cut the throttle and continued to climb! Now the wind was really picking up and the storm cell was moving in much quicker - not good! I was caught in a 'brick-lifter'. I put a lot of down elevator into the glider and worked hard on bringing it in as quickly as possible - turns out possibly too quickly.
The diving must have spun the prop really hard, as one of the blades (already broken) tore off and the subsequent vibration cracked my homemade engine mount.

Fortunately no further damage was caused - it could have been bad with the engine shaking like crazy. In fact, I didn't realize the prop was broken until I walked up to the landed plane. I had actually given a bit of throttle on the final approach to penetrate the turbulence close to the ground.


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