Who can join?
Everyone is welcome - All it takes is general good health (glasses are ok) and access to a danish bank account (which is needed in order to become a regular member).
Despite the fact that the club has its roots in DTU, we also have many members who are not or have not been DTU students. So if you think PFG is something for you, then you are more than welcome.
What shall I remember on the day of flying?
On the day of flying, briefing is at 9:30 (please be there on time) You shall expect to reserve the entire day.
You should be prepared to be outside all day, so it will be wise to bring:
-Suitable clothing to be outside for several hours (It can be windy at the airfield and the grass can be quite wet if it has been raining the day before)
-Lunch (and breakfast) and something to drink (we make dinner together Saturdays and share the expenses)
-Sunprotection (sunglasses, sunscreen and a hat, that does not block your view - Bucket hats are popular)
-Phone with mobilepay or cash (trial membership is 499 dkk)
-A sleeping bag and toiletries if you want to stay between saturday and sunday - we can provide a bed on our dormitory (free of charge)
How long does a flight last?
We fly in aircraft without an engine, which means that we are very dependent on upward air currents (thermals) to keep the aircraft flying for longer periods. These are created in certain weather conditions, which are not always present.
Gliding is therefore a very weather-dependent sport and two flying days can be very different.
The most commonly used starting method in our club is by winch launch. Here we are pulled up between 300m and 500m height. Since the aircraft drops approx. 0.75m/s it gives a flight time of between 4 and 7 minutes if there are no thermals. If the weather is only for shorter training trips, we can typically reach 3-5 trips per person per day and a trial membership can therefore in some cases be flown in one day. If there are thermals, there is typically a maximum of one hour flight time per student. With five students you will thus get a long + maybe one or two shorter trips in a day. So you should expect to reserve the whole day (and evening) when signing up if you don't want to risk running into problems.
When are we home?
Briefing is at 9:30 and usually we fly until 18:00 - maybe even longer if weather permits and there is commitment to do this. It is often closely correlated with the weather. For example, if it starts to rain we can close down in the middle of the day. If the weather is great, we can fly until sunset. Hereafter we have to pack the hangar, fill out papers, etc., which typically takes about an hour. We fly from Kalundborg, which is just over 1 hour by car from Copenhagen. Thus it is not uncommon to arrive home late. On Saturdays many also choose to eat dinner together after a long day of flying.
How is the education?
The lessons required to acquire the certificate consist of a practical and a theoretical part. Most people choose to start with the practical part, as it is easier to understand and remember the theory when you have some experience to draw on. The theory is taught two evenings a week in late winter/early spring.
Since flying gliders is a leisure activity, it means that you fly on the days you like. The pace at which you get through the training will therefore be highly person-dependent. It is therefore difficult to put an exact time on how long the “education” lasts. It also depends on whether the weather allows for the lessons in question, as well as how many people you will be sharing a school plane/instructor with.
The fastest ones can do the practical training in a season (requires you to fly almost every weekend), most people spend two seasons to get the certificate.
What does it cost?
When the five test flights are completed, you can sign up for a regular membership and pay a monthly membership fee (DKK 169/MRD. for students), starting fee (DKK 36/Start) and hourly rate (DKK 132/hour) (prices can be found here: http://pfg.dk/hvad-koster-det). Most people use 75-120 starts before going solo, and about 50-75 starts as a single-seater student before they can go to the exam. The price of the certificate thus depends on how quickly you can get through schooling and how often you go to the airfield (if you only show up rarely, the membership fee will be a large part of the expense). In addition, there are expenses for exams, as well as an approval of the medical condition by an aviation doctor. A conservative estimate is that it can be done for approx. DKK 15-20,000.
In order to get the certificate and be allowed to fly away from the airfield in a single seater plane, you will have to pass the theory exam after having followed the theory course which unfortunately is only taught in Danish (so far). But despair not, you will be allowed to do quite alot without it. The practical part of the schooling and the theory necessary for safely flying around the airfield is taught at the airfield, and since most of our instructors have a quite decent level of English skills, doing that part of the teaching in English is normally not problematic.