There are two approaches to winning the Flugtag competition. Fancy Aerodynamic Design, or Base Comedy.
If you are going for the first you need to spend a bit of cash on exotic, light-but-strong materials and get the skinniest, weediest pilot you can find. Then find four big, strong, and fast crew to provide the muscle power. The launch method is also crucially important. Past furthest flying designs, while nominally "human power only" usually have some sort of energy storage/multiplication contraption as part of the launch, in my biased opinion, bordering on cheating. I've seen weight-drops (which were legal if the weights are just crew bodies) as catapults. I've seen topple-towers (the extra height helps) that come to a sudden stop at the end of a tether and "throw" the vehicle forward. You need to get the speed up as far as you can somehow (ideally, well above what a running human can achieve) to get the longest glide. It looks like they have tightened up the rules for this year.
3.4 All flying machines must comply with the following specifications and also pass the Promoter’s safety inspection: (a) All flying machines must be human powered. No auxiliary lifting devices, power sources, or stored energy (e.g. elastic, batteries, clockwork springs, catapults, rocket fuel etc.) can be used. (b) Modified aircraft (e.g. paragliders, hang-gliders, jet-fighter planes, helicopters, light aircraft,commercial jets etc.) are not permitted. (c) The build rules are as follows: i. All crafts must be built by the Team with no input from anyone outside of the Team. ii. The length from nose to tail of all flying machines must be less than 6m. iii. The wingspan of all flying machines must be less than 5m. iv. The height must be less than 2.5m. v. The wheelbase of all flying machines can be no more than 3m wide. vi. The maximum craft weight is 180kg including the pilot. vii. No pre-fabricated 2-part gliders (any handmade gliders must be piloted by hang bar or swing seat – cannot be strapped in or onto craft). viii. For 2 part crafts (base and craft), the base cannot exceed 1.5m width and 3m length. ix. All crafts must be pushed from rear by the team, no catapulting. x. Use of materials that float is highly recommended (i.e. foam, wood, etc.). xi. All flying machines must have some kind of buoyancy device on all major parts of the craft to avoid them submerging and sinking on landing. xii. The aircrafts may only be built from environmentally friendly, safe materials. xiii. If teams are sponsored, the sponsor’s logos must be restricted to one square on each side of the flying machine, no larger than 40cm x 40cm. xiv. The use of supporting metal parts is not permitted. xv. Items that are not permitted on the craft and during the skit are: chicken wire or similar wires, seat belts, pyrotechnics, smoke, air horns over 200 psi, heat producing elements,flares, firecrackers, high-pressure cylinders, chemicals, caster wheels (shopping cart type wheels), ropes of any type, liquids, projecting items into crowd (via device, or throwing), fire, dry ice, batteries, parachutes, full face head gear/helmet or mascot headwear, grocery carts as “crafts”.
Otherwise just go for comedy. Crazy costumes, bizarre antics, and a heroic failure on launch goes a long way with the judges.
The last one I went to in Auckland, the wind came up and spoiled a lot of team's efforts. Unfortunately the launch platform was fixed-direction and so all the later teams had to launch with a stiff tail-wind. One team had a beautiful, high-tech glider-like machine that I thought looked like a potential winner, but a strong gust came up while they were bringing it to the launch platform and blew it into the safety railings, breaking the wings in half. The poor team. All that awesome work and all they could do was just throw the wreckage off the platform and jump after it.
Last Edit: Jul 8, 2021 17:45:56 GMT 12 by hardyakka: formatting