Showing posts from January, 2007

First IFR practice in many months

Today I asked 388 co-owner and newly-minted Private Pilot John to act as my safety pilot. This was my first under-the-hood work since about 9 months ago, and it really showed. My altitude holding was good, only a couple of excursions, but I couldn't keep a heading for the life of me. I would wonder 20 degrees, usually to the left, quite a bit. This made some of my VOR tracking fairly crummy. The gyro also likes to drift which doesn't help. I'm definitely not ready for slogging through the clouds in any airplane right now. I plan to shoot a few more practice approaches some time soon. Since my last approach back into JGG was the best of the 3 I did, I am hoping the trend continues during my next flight. We noticed some issues with the turn coordinator acting a bit sluggish. In one turn to the right it showed straight flight, even when banked over at 30-40 degrees with proper rudder. On the ground it was very slow to show straight travel when performing s-turn tests

Local flight

This morning I went out to the airport around 9AM to get in a quick flight to PHF and back. Performed a simple landing on 20 at PHF before taxiing back to depart again. Did well with the radio work and handling the bit of turbulence below 1000'. Had a decent crosswind at PHF as well. Both landings were firm but acceptable. Two things I screwed up today: Flew too close to the nearby nuke station - just forgot all about it until I was already too close. I turned away from it immediately. Left carb heat on when taxiing at PHF - not really good for the engine and highlighted the need to ALWAYS USE THE CHECKLIST. So I learned that for the 20th time. I'm getting very close to 300 hours of total time now - 2/3s of that is in 172s which is something I want to change. I need to branch out more. In other news, fellow 35388 co-owner John passed his private pilot check ride on Friday! Congrats to John! Hopefully he will safety pilot for me until K gets her ticket.

Airport pickup

This weekend my business partner Tyson came into town for our first face-to-face meeting. He flew into Norfolk so that gave me the perfect excuse to use the Cirrus. Rather than drive the 1 hour distance I flew it in 20 mins. It still took just as long door-to-door but was WAY more fun. It was pretty windy on Friday so I found the air a little bumpy below 3000 feet. On final into Norfolk I had a good 20 kt headwind which made me feel like I was crawling to the runway. A large Southwest jet was waiting on me so I tried to keep my speed up. I touched down nicely on the left wheel, then a moment later on the right, then another second or so later on the nose. Someone came over the radio and said "nice one!" I assumed it was the southwest jet referring to my landing, since I was the only one moving on the airport at the time. I just gave a double-click back over the radio and smiled. For all I know it was somebody in the tower talking about his cup of coffee. :) But I