Day 4 - Road Trip to Poland

We started the day by returning to the workshop at Zar Airfield to handover the K21 and related paperwork and then we were shown around all the various departments of the workshop - at every turn and corner more and more gliders were being worked on in various stages of refurbishing and in some cases major repairs. And that did not include our visit to other buildings down the road where even more gliders were in storage, either awaiting collection or to be used for spares!

Having checked over the London Gliding Club trailer, into which was already loaded a shiny refurbished K21 ready for rerun to the UK, and ahead of us towing it back from Wednesday onwards we then considered our plan for the day. We had established that as with most gliding clubs we should have been at Zar Airfield on a previous day (Saturday) when there had been wave flights to several thousand metres, but with no wave on the forecast there was unlikely to be any gliding today.

So, with google maps out we found that the SZD factory, where the DSGC Perkoz is being built, is located around 25 miles to the North of where we are - therefore an easy decision to try and find that factory and to see how the new Club glider is getting along.
Momento from the visit? (Mike Sloggett)
Bearing in mind our unannounced and unplanned visit it was much appreciated that we were warmly welcomed by Andrzej the joint designer of the Perkoz, and General Manager - who then kindly gave us over an hour of his time, taking us to the main factory location a few kilometres down the road and showing us the process of building a glider from start to finish. 
Checking up on the build of our Perkoz (Mike Sloggett)
 And then we saw the DSGC glider which has had the main components built and is now awaiting the cockpit to be fitted out, after which the glider will be painted, test flown and then returned to the factory for final painting and finishing touches to be completed.
Ready for cockpit to be fitted out (Mike Sloggett)
As with the workshop at Zar Airfield the factory had numerous gliders either being built, being refurbished or being repaired - one having been sent across to Poland from the US!

We then visited Bielsko-Biała Aeroklub and found the gliding club there. We said “Hallo” (one of the easier Polish words to learn) to a local glider pilot and under a bright sunny sky, with evident wave clouds not that far from the airfield and with a good weather forecast for tomorrow, we asked whether there might be any gliding available. The local glider pilot said ‘No chance, we had such a good weekend......I was only on aerotow for a few minutes before I found the wave right above the airfield, and climbed to 6000 metres......”

Clearly John and I should have been there yesterday! - Mike Sloggett