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FastEddieB

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About FastEddieB

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    Master Star Fighter

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  • Location
    Mineral Bluff, GA/Lenoir City, TN
  • Interests
    LSA's, Motorcycles, Bicycling, Macs& iDevices & Chess. Active CFI.
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    Male

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  1. Back in 2012 I started a thread about planning a trip to Page, which then morphed into a trip report: We had planned 3 days flying from N GA, but left a cushion. Good thing we did, as we ended up grounded in Amarillo, TX due to very large headwinds at altitude. Anyway, our route and adventures are chronicled in the thread.
  2. Like I said, a sore point with me. First, planes are built with a safety margin built in. It allows for slight miscalculations, aging of the airframe and components, that sort of thing. But every pound above max gross nibbles into that margin. Do you feel lucky? Also, an overweight condition can just be one link in an accident chain. I know I've mentioned this before, but I'm sure there are new members here who might not be aware. I owned beautiful 1966 Citabria with a partner: We used it for tailwheel and basic aerobatic instruction and rental. It was destroyed and two people were killed in a tragic, but foreseeable accident. Accident basics here (I can't find the more extensive NTSB report right now): https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/41309 NTSB report can be found searching the N# here: http://www.aviationdb.com/Aviation/AccidentQuery.shtm Links in the chain: Overweight aircraft. Low altitude aerobatics*. No parachutes carried. Hardware issue that I remain highly suspicious of.** Perhaps no single factor listed above by itself would have cause the fatal accident. Added together the outcome was probably unavoidable. Sad. *The renter pilot was not checked out for aerobatics. Parachutes were available, but this was not to be an aerobatic flight. **The apparently missing wing attach hardware seemed highly suspicious. We were just out of an annual, with wing root fairings removed and wing attachment hardware checked. There was reason to remove it. The case was referred to the Broward County Homicide Division, but the case was never solved. I had flown the airplane once since the annual. I was in the gym business, which in that era had very shady elements - see the movie "Pain and Gain" for some idea. To this day I suspect I may have been the target of someone and the plane had been tampered with. But I'll never know.
  3. I like your thought experiment that followed. There’s also a “hard limit” where your license becomes at risk should a mishap occur. Right at 1,320 lbs. And what that DPE mentioned above said to an impressionable applicant is almost criminal. It sends the message that Limitations are optional and only be adhered to at the discretion of the pilot. I don’t know if any pilots actually died as a result of his attitude, but I wouldn’t be surprised. And, yes, this is a sore point with me.
  4. Maybe, but your license might care if something went wrong and you were over 1,320 lbs. Even if that “something” had zero to do with your over gross condition. If you value your license, don’t intentionally violate your plane’s Operating Limitations.
  5. Yep! Anywhere. § 91.119 Minimum safe altitudes: General. Except when necessary for takeoff or landing, no person may operate an aircraft below the following altitudes: (a) Anywhere. An altitude allowing, if a power unit fails, an emergency landing without undue hazard to persons or property on the surface.
  6. Please do go on... What might these restrictions be? I don’t think I’ve ever encountered any.
  7. Here’s one of mine - complete with deer - that shows how little float I manage. As an aside, I have to make do with 5” mains and a wheelbarrow tire on the front.
  8. I like this illustration from Kershner: The upper is how I think most land, where there’s a lot of float since most of the speed is being bled off in the flare, with ground effect reducing the drag that slows you down. The lower I call the “stall down” method, and results in little if any float, since most of the speed is bled off out of ground effect. Downside is that if the timing is too far off, a pilot can stall while the plane is still too high. I think my technique is somewhere between the two.
  9. “Experimental Sky Arrow 467SA...” on the first call.
  10. Certainly a stable approach at the right airspeed is important. For the right speed, 1.3 Vso usually works well, reserving 1.2 Vso for “short fields”. For the latter, with a 40 kt stall speed, 48 kts is about right, still giving a 20% margin over the stall. That said, the recommended speeds in the POH should take precedent if different, and don’t forget to add 1/2 of the gust speed if gusty. That said, the key to not floating is not so much how fast you are on final, but how fast you are when you enter ground effect. “Swooping” into ground effect, even at 1.3 or 1.2 Vso will cause a lot of float, especially in a low wing. Getting slower is the purpose of the roundout, which should begin about one wingspan above the ground - roughly 50’ in most of our little planes. If timed right, bleeding off airspeed in the roundout will put you in ground effect barely above stall speed, and result in very little float. In my plane, full flap stall is about 40kts. But instead of short-fielding at the computed 48 kts, I usually settle in at roughly 55 kts on final, and use the roundout to slow down appropriately and get very little float. Works for me!
  11. And I thought I was being nerdy!
  12. Yes, you too can be John Belushi in 1941!!!
  13. Interesting question. I’ve never felt the need for one, but there’s no doubt it could help in a crash. If one didn’t mind a “Dork Factor” of 11, it seems like a bicycle helmet* would be close to ideal, with light weight and good ventilation and visibility. Would not work with a headset, so you’d need to find an alternative in-ear solution. Just a thought. *Karen calls me her “Special Ed”, and sometimes opines I should wear one all the time!
  14. I agree with Warmi 100%. I think it’s when a pilot is taught “No more that x degrees in the pattern” that danger lies. It then can become instinctive to avoid more bank, even when necessary. That can result in skidded turns, where the real danger lies. I have no problem with 45° of bank in the pattern on occasion if the wings are unloaded and the ball is in the center. That said, with proper planning excessive bank shouldn’t be needed, and I’m not advocating “horsing” the plane roughly around the pattern. A couple of years back there was much discussion about rounded patterns. I tried a couple, but didn’t care for them. I like well-defined crosswind and base legs in wings-level flight, even if they only last 5 or 10 seconds in my preferred tight patterns. Two main advantages in my book: 1) Depending on the plane, in a continuous bank the view of traffic on final can be blocked for an extended time. Mostly a problem in low wings, but even in a high wing I don’t care for having my view blocked in any direction in the pattern for any extended duration. 2) Having the wings level on base provides the opportunity for the pilot to take a breath, check final, add flaps if desired* and judge whether his or her height is correct. If too low, an early turn towards the runway may be justified. If too high, a small s-turn to final or more flaps may be appropriate. But if rounded patterns work for you and don’t seem to have these obvious drawbacks, go for it! *I was taught to avoid deploying flaps while turning as a general practice. The thought is if the admittedly rare case of “split flaps” occurs while already banked, the resulting difference in lift of the two wings might be harder to deal with. Almost vanishingly unlikely to happen to any given pilot over his or her career, but since it’s so easy to avoid with proper planning, why not?
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