Showing posts from September, 2006

Airplane updates

Well, yesterday our local mechanic, Kevin, improved the primer in the airplane (by making it easier to use - it was sticking badly before) and he may have also reduced the amount of water getting into the right fuel tank (by sealing some screws). Also, the wife started flight lessons this morning ! A momentous day! She can now preflight for me! Woo Hoo!

Aero Ace - part 2

Today I went back to target to get the higher performance aero-ace. This one looks like a jet fighter. It flies a good bit faster than the bi-plane version and glides much better. It needs more room to fly in though - the back yard was too small. So what does that mean? Well, we started using it in the front yard and over the street. Krista crashed it in the road and messed up the nose a little. Didn't seem to affect its flight characteristics though. We've tried not to annoy too many passersby with it. :) This is next on the list, for indoor fun at the office: Picco-X

First weekend trip

This weekend I took my first overnight flight trip. I flew down to KUZA to visit with the parents and sister. The flight there and back worked out nicely. I went VFR both ways - 6500' to KUZA and 7500' back to KJGG [Google Earth GPS track] . I think that was the highest I have ever piloted an airplane. During both trips I was just above the cloud tops (broken layers) and above the haze and rough air. Since I didn't have an autopilot I made the best of the situation - I made dodging cloud tops a little game. I would pick a valley in the clouds to fly to in order to maintain my heading and dodge any updrafts that were trying to raise a cloud in my way. This gave my flight path a few wiggles now and then (as did the heavy wing when I was operating from a single fuel tank above 5000’). I was impressed by the fact that 7500' really does look pretty high when you look down at the cars and buildings. They are really, really tiny from that height. There were a few n

Aero Ace = Funtimes!

Yesterday I read a post at Digg about a small, cheapo RC airplane that's a lot of fun . So at lunch I went to the local Target and picked one up - all $30 of it. I just got to play with it today at lunch and it WAS a lot of fun. I started out trying it in the two-car garage but wasn't really making it work. So I headed out into the backyard where there is a little more room. I had it flying fairly well in just a few attempts. The little plane is structurally strong! As long as you crash nose-first (as most crashes are) it holds up to the punishment well. I have been careful not to mess up the tail, as it looks pretty weak. The controls are really simple - one up/down stick for throttle/pitch and one right/left stick for differential engine power (it's a twin engine!). Within just a few flights I could toss it (that's how it takes-off), fly it in a few circles, and then catch it. My wife was flying it well just as quickly as me. The wife said I had a goofy smile