The views from this glider are breath taking, as Skarpheoinn Snorrason gracefully flies his powerless craft above Iceland. Soft, soulful music plays as the glider sails over earth, offering striking views from every angle. Clouds, farmlands, sunset. It is a sweet, quiet, engineless flight in a glider that looks like a seagull. Then the glider lands softly and gently near sundown on a flat, open field. This movie will put you at peace, and make you want to go fly a glider.
What’s so attractive about gliding?
Gliders are a unique way to fly. Without power, they require a tow plane or winch to launch. Once airborne, they only stay aloft as they convert potential energy to kinetic energy with two exceptions. One way is that gliders can ride convective lift (the heating of the ground causes air to rise in narrow columns) or via mountain wave (near mountains). Glider great for beginners. They are an excellent way to learn about the basics of flying. Even experienced pilots love gliding. For them, it’s the relaxing “Sunday Drive” version of being a pilot. Finally, gliding is affordable. A tow costs less than $50. If you plan your flights well and fly on a day with lift, you can fly for hours for less than an hour of flying in a Cessna.
About the glider in the video.
Designed by Rudolph Kaiser and manufactured by Alexander Schlechler, the ASK-21 is a two seater, mid wing glider aircraft made of glass reinforced plastic (GRP). The aircraft measures just over 27 feet in length, and has a wing span of 55 feet and 9 inches. The glider is only about five feet high, and weighs around 800 pounds when it is empty. Other features of this model include tandem seating, dual controls, and adjustable rubber pedals and seat backs. This type of aircraft must never exceed 174 miles per hour.
Also known as a club class sailplane, the ASK-21 is designed primarily for beginner instruction. However, it is also good to do cross country flying and aerobatics. The ASK-21 flew for the first time in 1979. Since then, more than 900 ASK-21 aircraft have been completed. One of them was acquired by the UK Ministry of Defense for use by Air Cadet organizations. The US Air Force Academy has also flown the ASK-21 glider. The ASK-21 glider is still in production today. A self launching version, called ASK-21 Mi, made its debut in 2004.