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This post is a follow on to Cessna 172- The Landing Pattern That Will Lead to a Good Touchdown
You’ve flown a good pattern with your Cessna 172, putting you ½ mile from the end of the runway at 400 feet above the ground. Your power is set for a 400 fpm rate of descent. In one minute you’ll be touching down. Now what?
Sunday tested my flying endurance.
I got a call Saturday night from CAP saying that an aircraft was missing in western Virginia and they needed crews to help search.
I launched around 10 from Richmond for what is usually about a two hour flight to Wise, VA. Headwinds turned it in to a 2.6. After after a quick lunch we took off to relieve another plane and ended up spending another 2.6 in the air, mostly circling.
Then there was the 2 hours on the way home for a total of 7.2.
Like it or not, pilots get judged on landings more than any other aspect of flight. You can spend two hours 100 feet off altitude, another hour not quite sure where you are, but if you bring it in with a squeaker, you’ll be congratulated. There’s a certain about of justice in that, landings are the phase of flight requiring the most skill and best reactions. On the other hand, no one rolls it on every time. That last minute gust or misjudged 12 inches can easily make a great landing good or a good one slightly embarrassing.
One of the really big problems with using GA for transportation is being able to get around once you get there. Perhaps someday something such as this will provide an answer:
The Commemorative Air Force (CAF) has lost it's court case to retain possession of a F-82 that it has owned since 1968. For reasons unclear a general at the U.S. Air Force Museum decided he wanted the plane back. This is despite the Air Force having donated the plane to the CAF over 30 years ago. When I was a kid, we called such transactions Indian giving, but I imagine that's not an appropriate thing to say anymore.
Three and a half years ago I went through a course and a couple of flights to transition to a Cessna 182 G1000. I remember studying all of the menus and which way to turn this or that knob to get the thing to do what you wanted it to. The most difficult part was the autopilot, which was before the current Garmin integrated one. It was an obvious flaw in the system and, while I'm glad it has been corrected, it's a shame how many almost new planes are flying around out there with something so much less than it could be.
Air Charter Executives Face Criminal Charges In 2005 Crash - Six executives who ran Platinum Jet Management, based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., are facing federal criminal charges in connection with the crash of a Bombardier Challenger CL-600 . .
Now, as at this time every year, I'm waiting for my wife to come up with some concocted story about me needing to go to the airport to help with something or another about AOPA. They think it would be a surprise, but I would know, that I was on the way to pick up the airplane I had just won.
This year it's going to be an Archer, newly fitted with glass, and I think it would suit me just fine.
Northrop Grumman Sued Over Mallard Crash - It's not often that a manufacturer is sued for allegedly defective products it hasn't built in almost 60 years but that's where Northrop Grumman finds itself. Chalk's Ocean Airways and its insurer AIG is suing the company over the crash of one of Chalk's Grumman Mallards in December of 2005, claiming the 58-year-old aircraft wasn't properly made.
My commenting on it won't add to the significance of the accomplishment or the accolades already given, but I think the fact the pilot was used to flying without engines is an important point.
I wish I had more experience in gliders, but my little bit of quiet flying did teach me a lot. One is the simple realization that a plane will continue to fly with the engine off. Along with that realization probably comes a reduction in the fear factor should the engine stop, hopefully keeping the mind calm enough to evaluate and react to the situation.