Monday, December 1, 2008

Instrument Training - Pt.1

September 13th, 2008

I started my instrument training a week ago. I now have 5 hours logged.

Since I am in sunny California and there is no weather to speak of to fly in, I get to wear these glasses looking things (called foogles) with a flip down visor so I can only see the instruments without any outside visual references.

The first couple of hours we went thru basic maneuvers including climbs, descents, turns, and airspeed changes.

In hours 3 and 4 we built on that and went thru constant airspeed climbs and descents, as well as constant rate climbs and descents.

Today we worked on timed turns to compass headings with my instructor playing Air Traffic Controller (ATC), so as an example, he would say "Cessna N11900 fly heading 270 degrees for 45 seconds, climb and maintain 5,500 ft. @ 90 kts, then after 45 seconds turn right heading 090, decent to 3,500 ft. with a 500 feet per min rate of decent and expect further instructions"

Tomorrow we will be practicing stalls and unusual attitudes "under the hood" ie foogles.

Well I am tired and I need to get some sleep for tomorrow's flight, so have a good night , I will be back in a couple of weeks for another update.

Flight 2 - I AM CURRENT!!!

June 15th, 2008

Woke up bright and early this morning, and met my instructor at the airport at 8AM. We did our pre-flight and taxied out to the runway, all the while my instructor was quizzing me on required equipment and emergency procedures.

We took off, got out of the pattern, and climbed up to 5,000FT. Once in the practice area, my instructor said, "Ok we have an engine fire, what do you do?" I ran thru the procedures and the check-lists and once we were at 3,000FT (one of the procedures for an engine fire is throttle to idle and dive to about 120 knots to try to extinguish the flames) once at 3,000FT, my instructor said, "Ok the fire is out, now your engine is dead, what do you do now?" So we went thru all the procedures and check-lists for that (and this time I remembered to Squawk 7700 and to tune to 121.5 and declare an emergency) and then we glided to about 1,000FT and once my instructor saw that I would make the field I had picked out to make my emergency landing, we climbed back up to altitude and headed back home.

Once back at at our home field and on short final, my instructor said, "Ok, there is a plane on the runway, what do you do?" So right away, we did the go-around procedure... full power, 10 degrees flaps up, positive rate climb, another 10 degrees of flaps up, verify positive rate of climb, and then the final 10 degree of flaps up and maintain runway heading until we turn crosswind. We came back around and landed, taxied back to parking, and shutdown.

Once we were back inside, he signed my logbook, and there you go. I AM CURRENT!!!!

Now I will go out and practice by myself for a while until I can fly the airplane like it is second nature, then I will start my instrument training. There is so much to learn and do with the instrument training that flying the airplane really needs to be second nature.

I can't describe how good flying makes me feel, it is so much fun. For me it really is an emotional high.

Happy landings


First Flight - Day 1 of getting current

June 14th, 2008

Well after what seems forever, I finally got back into the cockpit today.

The day started off with 2 hours of ground covering such things as... required documents, airspace, FAR regulations, weight & balance calculations, V speeds, emergency procedures, and a few others I can't recall at the moment.

After the ground work was done, it was off to the airplane. Preflight went well and once in the plane, I felt right at home almost immediately.

We went thru engine start, taxi, run-up, and finally, 1 for takeoff on 31R

Once in the air and out of the traffic pattern, we moved onto slow flight and stalls which went very well. In fact I even stayed right on my altitude during the slow down to slow flight speed.

Next came a simulated engine out emergency. While I got the basics down like pitching for best airspeed for best glide & locating a potential landing site, I did forget a few important items, like oh uh turning to the emergency frequency and declaring an emergency and setting the transponder to 7700 (code for an emergency).

We happen to be near a soft sod field called Frasier Lake while performing a simulated engine out, so we decided to land there and practice soft field landings and take-offs. That also went very well and my landings were quite good.

Next came some radio work at an uncontrolled airfield without a control tower. You have to make your own position calls at an uncontrolled field, since you do not have a control tower doing it for you. This was done at South County Airport in Morgan Hill, and was my best landing of the day.

With that behind us my instructor was satisfied with my landings and overall performance, so it was back to Reid-Hill View airport. We got cleared for a straight in approach for 31L and landed. Taxied back to parking and shut down.

My instructor said I did a very good job and was impressed with my overall handling of the aircraft considering I have not touched the controls of an airplane in 2.5 years.

I did not get my sign-off today though to fly solo again. He wants me to work on emergency procedures again tomorrow. He said to study the procedures and we will go fly them again tomorrow. Once that is done he said my basic air-work and aircraft handling is good and I will get my sign-off to fly solo again.

Once I get that, that is what I will do, go out and continue to practice by myself for about a mth, a couple of times a week and then I will start my instrument training to get my instrument rating.

That is it for now, I will report tomorrow after my follow-up flight hopefully with my sign-off in my log book.

Happy landings,