Showing posts from April, 2006

IFR current for another 6 months

Today Tom and I hopped into his airplane to make the short hop over to PHF from JGG. The plan was to grab 99A out at PHF so that I could fly some approaches it in. Flying over in Tom's plane let us avoid rush hour on the interstate and let Tom get some approaches in while I watched out for traffic going into Camp Perry and West Point and other various and sundry runway destinations. We managed to pick yet another severe clear day for the flights though had to deal with the wrath of unstable air giving us the occasional jolt of turbulence. Tom did the ILS 25 approach into PHF and made it a full stop landing. While he was tying the airplane down I ran into Mercury Aviation to get the logbook and keys to 99A. Tom joined me at 99A mid-preflight as I was discovering that the left flap was a little sticky. It seemed to deploy fully but was unhappy about it. I decided I’d just fly without the use of flaps today – not a big deal since the gusty winds would keep me from using more t

An especially fun and productive flight

Today the sun was shining, the wind was light, and the temperature mild - the PHF airport was calling me. Luckily I had my old steed, 5199A, scheduled for 1PM. I asked my wife to tag along as I had a special job for her on this flight. We took off from work at noon and headed to the Newport News Schlotsky's for some sandwiches. I felt a little rushed during lunch since I knew we had a date with the airplane coming up. Over the meal we chatted a little bit about my game plan. Today I wanted to take some aerial photos of different areas in Williamsburg with the camera pointing straight down. The goal was to create overlay images that I could place in Google Earth. Since most of Williamsburg is low-resolution in Google Earth our photos would add a nice amount of detail to the application – at least for the limited area that we would photograph. Shooting overlay images requires a special technique. Ours was this: Use a high-wing airplane – a requirement to look straight down Op

Satefy pilot, then under the hood again

Today Tom and I took his C-172 up for some practice instrument approaches. I was safety pilot for the first half of the trip. Tom shot a couple of VOR-based approaches at Franklin, KFKN, and then the NDB approach into Wakefield. During this time I was busy looking for traffic and admiring the severe clear air. We had thunderstorms that morning, but they were out of the way for out 10:15 AM lift off time. I expected them to leave behind some choppiness in the air - instead they just took the haze away. There was some haze to be found though, well, really it was smog I guess. Franklin has some sort of processing plant just east of the airport. It was churning a nice cloud of white up into the westerly wind. From there the smog was drifting across the 9/27 runway. It didn't affect visibility too badly but the smell was quite noticeable each time we made a low pass of the field. After Tom landed us at Wakefield we switched drivers and it was my chance to get some time in u

A new ride for the president and a "new" rental for me

The president looks to be getting a new chopper before too long, says a Popular Science article . Only $110,000,000 a piece! On the other end of the aviation spectrum I have plans to start flying 99A again. The solo-pilot insurance has been worked out so I will get to hop into the same bird I did my instrument training in. Still flying out of PHF, but that's fine with me if maintenance issues don't mess up as many of my flights as it has recently at Rick Aviation.