Archive for April, 2005

We’re in Nashville

20 April 2005 at 10:39 pm
by Berck

We made it to Nashville safely, had a wonderful dinner, and now we’re going to bed. More tomorrow.


16 April 2005 at 4:58 am
by Jonah

I’ve now worked at Mardel’s warehouse for a year, so that means I get one week of vacation. Woohoo! We’re driving to Highlands, NC today and meeting up with Berck’s mom. Then we’ll drive to Nashville and visit his dad. Then we’ll drive to Knoxville and visit our friends Arnold and Mary Linda, where we’ll celebrate Passover. (Funny story about that…we had no idea the holiday was that weekend when we asked if we could visit.) We’ll be back in OK on the following Sunday night, and I’ll return to work on Monday.

Signed off for a Commercial Check Ride.

15 April 2005 at 9:08 am
by Berck

I flew 2.0 hours yesterday. It was actually smooth out, and I managed to perform all of my maneuvers within the Practical Test Standards without any problem. I had forgotten how much easier it is to fly when things are nice and smooth.

At one point, D. had me doing slow flight. He had me slow the plane down to 40 knots, the specified MCA (Minimum Controllable Airspeed) at full flaps. The plane will actually fly a bit slower that. “Slow down to 35 knots.” I did, flirting with a stall the whole time. With enough power and pitched up, the plane will bobble along just on the edge of a stall. 35 knots is the lowest indicated airspeed on the instrument. “Slow down to the ‘S’ in knots.” This, I was reasonably certain, would result in a stall. I slowly pulled a little power, fighting the stall, working the rudder pedals to keep us going straight. As I did this, D. asked, “What is the deffinition of Minimum Controllable Airspeed?”

“An air speed at which any increase in angle of attack or reduction of power will result in a–” EEEEEEEEEEENT “…stall,” I said as the noise dropped rather violently. I added full power, simultaneously noticing that I must have been flying seriously uncoordinated right at the stall, because I was left wing low, and the nose was starting to wrap around in an incipient spin. A little more than I’d bargained for. I almost wished we were a little higher because I’ve still never been in a spin, and I wanted to see what it was like. But 3,000 feet is not a good place to be playing with spins. I stood on the right rudder pedal. Reluctantly, the nose stopped it’s downward and leftward motion. As I started to build some airspeed, I pulled the flaps in to 10 degrees and slowly transitioned to a climb. After the flaps came “Nice recovery,” D. said without any trace of aprehension. He’s gotten quite a bit more relaxed than he was a year ago.

We spent the last hour working on my landings. For some strange reason, the wind was all but dead. Considering it was at 30 knots the last time I flew, I had a hard time adjusting. Not that my landings were bad, just that it’s really hard to judge power off accuracy landings with NO wind. Furthermore, short field landings are much more difficult without a decent wind to help me out. Even though the landings weren’t great, he signed me off anyway. He figures the skills are there, and I should be able to perform on a check ride. Especially since it’s unlikely the wind will be completely calm again until June, and I’m not going to fly if it’s ridiculously windy.

I’ve got a Stage Check then an actual Check Ride, so I have to do it TWICE. If I fail the stage check, it’s no big deal. If I fail the check ride, that’s not so good. I get a dreaded “pink slip” which stays with me, saying I once failed a check ride…

Now the plane IS broken.

13 April 2005 at 3:05 pm
by Berck

Well, when I showed up for some ground study since my plane had been taken, I noticed that the plane was in the hangar. Turns out the prop governor quit working the flight before.

D. said he’d try to complete everything in one flight tomorrow evening. Provided that the plane is back in service by then (it should be) and no one takes the plane (at 6pm, I might get away with it, but who knows).

Nope, not flying today.

13 April 2005 at 12:34 pm
by Berck

As I suspected, I’m not flying today. It seems they took the plane for someone’s check ride.

I’m going in to do some ground study instead.