All entries for November 2004

November 26, 2004

Review of Cessna 152 A Pilots guide

4 out of 5 stars

I am very impressed with this book – extremely comprehensive with very clear explanations. Lots of diagrams and charts to break up the text.I am not particulary mechanically minded so especially appreciate the clear and simple description of the aircraft systems.

Note that I got the book for next to nothing on Ebay – always worth a look

Missed Lesson – Favourite Flying Quotes

Unfortunately due to low cloud 900ft and altitude for flying circuits at 1000ft, it wasn't possible to do my circuit training today. Although it would have been interesting! Thought I should do something to do with flying so have compiled a list of my favourite flying quotes …

Flying is the best possible thing for women.
Baroness Raymonde de Laroche of France, first licensed woman pilot, receiving her license, 8 March 1910

The worst day of flying still beats the best day of real work.
so very true

When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.
Leonardo da Vinci

Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that?
Captain Picard, from 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' episode 'Booby Trap

November 15, 2004

Lesson 8 more circuits and some heavy bumps

Really this lesson was much of the same. Circuit training at Coventry.

Started off really well – now feel a lot more confident doing the checks and think my taxying was pretty damm good. No more shopping trolley experiences for me. (Although I must check that I wasn’t taxying against the brakes – a really big no no)

However this time I got to talk to ATC (Air traffic control) to request take off, tell them we were ready for take off. inform them that were on downwind leg and that we were going to do a touch n go This was really stressful- why I’m not sure. Mark had clearly written or told me exactly what I had to say but still it felt nerve wracking. Its probably something to do with not wanting to make myself look a complete prat on air.

Unfortunately the headset wasn’t working properly I could hear the babble coming from atc okay but my instructor was quite faint – this added to the complexity of the task.

During each circuit I had a problem lining up for the final approach I was too far over to the left (although I felt at the time I was reasonably lined up) – what I wasn’t doing was making any allowance for wind direction. I think there was a strong crosswind coming from the right side of the runway therefore we needed to counteract this by having the nose of the plane pointing to the right. I think this was a crabbed crosswind landing.

Another problem that came to light was that I have been thinking that the rpm for normal straight and level flight is 2200 rpm but its actually 2300rpm so this explains why I was flying to slowly round the circuit (85kts instead of 90-100kts). Also for some unknown reason (perhaps over- confidence?) my climbing turn were becoming too steep – these are supposed to be gentle 15 deg turn but I think mine were starting too approach 30 deg.

However despite all the problems I did do some good landings so all was not lost. However again I thought this was more luck than good judgement. I also thought that some of my landing were a little on the heavy side but at least they were main wheels not nose wheel down first.

things to do

  • look and do a follow up blog of atc procedures – what do I need to say and when
  • revisit the idea of flare- possibly need to follow up with Mark exactly what I should be seeing when landing again – how high to pull up the nose etc

P.s note for steve r on making the final turn height was 600 ft speed 70kts and distance from runway best guestimate approx twice length of runway

November 10, 2004

More about crosswind takeoffs

Follow-up to Wellesbourne Airport from Christine's Flying blog

all I did was steer into the wind

if you have a significant crosswind (greater than 10 kts) cutting accross the runway I’m not sure how to steer into the wind enough to offset its effect

As you point out I think you need to compensate with the ailerons for the effect of lift – I will ask more questions at the next lesson – thanks for this prompt

Also have you tried landing with crosswind – apparently this is a bit more complicated as there more than one method
  1. the crabbed approach
  2. wing-down approach
  3. combination of above 2

Wellesbourne Airport

Follow-up to Lesson 7 Landing Approaches from Christine's Flying blog

Circuit Diagram for Wellesbourne

I forgot to add in my original posting that when taking off from Coventry there was a strong crosswind. The crosswind takeoff means that the ailerons are ‘moved into the wind’ i.e cross wind from the right move control column to the right. As speed increase during take-off run the central column is slowly centralised so that at the actual point of take off wings are level

November 09, 2004

landing hints 2

Follow-up to Lesson 7 Landing Approaches from Christine's Flying blog

Another helpful hint on landing approach is that the runway should be in a fixed position in the viewscreen (should just get larger) obvious I know when you think about it

BTW I’ve had a go at trying to land with a flight sim and its very very difficult – for me more difficult than the real thing

Lesson 7 Landing Approaches

For some unknown reason we couldn’t do circuits at Coventry airport. Air Traffic Control said it was due to traffic (didn’t seem much going on to me though ) so we were diverted to Wellesborne near Warwick. This is a a much more difficult circuit to fly as you have to make a sharp right hand turn just after take off to avoid flying over a village. And also the runway is shorter – much shorter

However I did five landings of which I thought only 2 were okay (Mark instructor said 4 were okay). Half way through the circuit exercise we were joined by another two circuit flyers. Luckily I wasn’t fazed by this but Mark said they were getting a little too close to us so we did wider circuits just to be on the safe side

No really learning points.. seems that I will be doing a lot of flying in squares for the next month or two

Re landing approaches (mainly for Steve R) here is the right angle for landing

November 01, 2004

Being a bat (PPL lesson 5 and a bit)

Just had my last evening lesson of the season. In the plane at 16:30 but were held by Air Traffic Control for nearly 2O mins while a Thompson 737 messed about. The sun set at 16.37 today so at 16:50 it was getting dark v quick. Unfortunately there was also a thick haze a so horizon wasn’t visible. Result was one very unsure student pilot. After one circuit we abandoned lesson although it was a good learning experience cos it shows how flying in low visibility is very disorientating and possible dangerous (imagine flying into low thick cloud with no insturment training)

To recreate conditions in a flight sim – set twilight conditions with haze and then turn down the brightness of the instrument panel (if you can do this) so that its barely visible and there you have it. Now try and land

November 2004

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Most recent comments

  • Good blog! Glad you got back in the air again. I am also doing circuits at the moment (at Southend) … by Dave on this entry
  • I think I left a comment back when you were still flying in 2004; glad to see you back in the air! by Fred Woodbridge on this entry
  • Good luck with the lessons. Ciruits will soon become a matter of habit and will give you a chance to… by Tony Harrison-Smith on this entry
  • too scary for me :–) by Christine Smith on this entry
  • Hello. Go for the wingsuit – … by Paul on this entry

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