- Aug 8, 2009
Just for the record, ground launch towing, auto or winch, does not need to be altitude limited.towing by car has been used for non-engined gyro gliders to give tuition to gyro builders but that has died out because there are so many two seat gyros for training now. Winch launches for gliders is still used, but it is altitude limited; ie, the glider gets towed to about circuit height and has a very limited flight time, typically 20 minutes at best on the best kind of day. Winch launches are useful for ab-initio gliders like the original Grasshopper types so perhaps this could be considered for a Youth launch programme.
A year or two ago paraglider pilots set a record by towing to 10,000 feet MSL in the Phoenix area via auto launch with payout winch. Paraglider maneuvers clinics frequently tow to 3,000 feet ALL (Above Lake Level) with boat tow and payout winch.
Circle or step tows are also common. Dan Bucanan does aerobatic hang glider airshows by towing back and forth (auto circle tows) off 4,500 foot paved runways.
From VB's post # 3 "They probably had some sort of clip, or attach point on the rope every 100 or 200 feet so that the gliders could easily clip in to whatever was the next upcoming attach point when it came by."
Mt climbers have hardware the will grab the rope at any point so the rope does not need a specific attach point. They are called an ascender.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ascender_(climbing) "An ascender is a device (usually mechanical) used for directly ascending a rope, or for facilitating protection with a fixed rope when climbing on very steep mountain terrain. "