451st Update

Had a great interview on Paramotor Nation on YouTube with Gorilla, Dave and Dave. Thanks guys for the opportunity to get all that info out there. The video below is a link to it. Subscribe to Paramotor Nation and make comments after you watch it. I will be answering questions in the comments section too.

Hello fellow ASAR enthusiasts! This is the first in a series of newsletters dedicated to keeping you informed on the progress that I am making with my team. I will try to post one of these articles about the 451st every week or so. I will go over my team members, my paramotor, and progress on fitting out the team's auxiliary equipment.

The Team - Currently my team is made up of myself, my ground support guy Don and my medic/pilot rescue specialist Terry. I am currently looking to fill the operations specialist slot. I will be approaching the firefighters at the department I used to work for using flyers and by handing out business cards that I had made. I will also be doing some static displays at fire houses that show an interest and request more information. I have also contacted a local HAM radio club to see if someone there may be interested.

My Paramotor - I use a Fresh Breeze fly pod with a Monster motor. I have attached flotation to my trike and mounted a seat belt knife to the body of the trike, as well as a remote push-to-talk button on my left hand side. I hold it in my left hand and my throttle in my right hand. I have a large convex mirror mounted on my nose wheel and a plastic phone holder to hold my phone when I am using the avionics. I have purchased a battery charger that will also be mounted near the phone. I am running lines up from the forward part of the trike frame that can be attached to the brake toggles so that I don't have to fasten them to the magnets. I can simply slide my hands up the line to the toggles. They will be attached after takeoff and removed prior to landing. They do not interfere with my full range of motion nor are they long enough to reach the prop if they should come loose on one end. I added a tachometer to make determining at what throttle point my altitude has stabilized.

The Trailer - I have a 6' x 12' enclosed trailer. I will be doing a video soon on how the interior is laid out, but let me note that it contains a toilet, tools, flight clothing, a spare tire, a trailer tow, fuel, a kayak, a lot of rope and high angle rescue gear and other stuff. Video coming soon.

The Command Center is a Winnebago Minnie Winnie. Still working on getting it outfitted for command center use.

The PRB (pilot rescue boat or paramotor retrieval boat) is my 16' pontoon boat (about to have a really cool makeover.) Stay tuned. Same for my 12 ft kayak.

My Personal Training - I am working with and will be attending a tree climbers rescue class that is given by Tree Climbers International in Atlanta, Georgia in the near future as well as getting my HAM radio license online. I hope to take two of my team members with me to Georgia since the class is for 3 people.

My Uniform - I wear a fire retardant red jump suit with pockets and reflective tape. I wear lightweight, offshore fishing boots and a rescue type life jacket. I have two helmets but they are not compatible with my David Clark headset so I haven't decided on a helmet yet. I will definitely be wearing one by the time I start low level flying. I don't wear polarized sunglasses because they interfere with being able to see my avionics on my phone. I wear transition, progressive glasses.

My Communication Equipment - I use Yaesu 445 and 455 air-band radios for myself and operations, and two walkie-talkie radios for ground control. Currently my ground control is working as operations so we communicate using the air-band radios.

The Airfield - I use Pierson Municipal Airport as my primary training center. It is a grass strip used by many of the surrounding airport flight schools as practice for landings, touch and goes and approaches. The traffic is moderately heavy so radio communication is required. I am negotiating with the town counsel to put a clubhouse on the airport property and start a training facility for the Squadron.

Future newsletters will expand on the progression of all these areas and I will be making accompanying videos. Please stay tuned.

Sandy Graves

Red Angel One

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