Sunday, 22 April 2012

Lesson 44: Finishing off Instrument Training (EX19)

When my QXC was cancelled this Tuesday I booked a lesson to finish off my hours instrument training. This was today and so this morning I headed up to the airport to do this. Since quite recently easy jet have launched a significant service from Southend. The arrival and departure path is close to the normal training area for the flying school so it will be interesting to see how this pans out (conflict wise). During my lesson I had the "foggles" on to restrict my vision to just the cockpit, but my instructor paused the lesson and told me to look ahead without them. Sure enough, just over a 1000 feet above us was an easy jet airliner leaving for somewhere in Europe. He said "you dont want to be getting in the way of these boys".

The lesson went ok, apparently the ppl test includes a test for doing a 180 turn once or twice with the foggles on. Obviously it's about keeping altitude maintained. My instructor mentioned that previously the ppl required 4 hours of instrument training. I think that would have been quite good.

Anyway, the lesson went well and we headed back. I wasn't too happy with how I got myself setup on base and the approach could have been better. That said the landing was ok, my instructor said it was good. I would say it more salvaged a sloppy approach. So that was that. 5o minute dual with 40 minutes covering Ex19 instrument flying.

I do have another QXC booked for Tuesday so we shall wait and see. It will be the third one, so maybe third time lucky we shall see.

44. 24/04/12 C152 G-BNKV EGTO EGTO 11:35 12:25 0:50 EX19 (40 minutes)
HOURS = 38:05 DUAL + 09:10 SOLO

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Weather: Cancelled Practice and Cancelled QXC

Weather - weather - weather... I was ment to go flying on Sunday with my friend with the part share in a Robin but unfortunately the weather was not kind to us and we had to cancel. The problem was the wind which was perpendicular to the main runway at Headcorn!

Today I was also meant to fly my QXC but the weather is even worse and so I have booked for another weeks time. I was reading the other night some people wait 8 weeks for this opportunity!

I have booked a lesson for Friday to complete the IFR stuff that got cut short a couple of weeks ago [when the vacuum pump failed] so at least I will have the joy (of course weather permitting) of flying an aeroplane some time soon!

Oh well...

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Rochester Accident Involving G-BNIV & Air Accident Database

Below - This is an interesting website. It appears to chronicle accidents across the world. The link below is for the UK.

Credit: Jim Haskel
I only found it because I was looking for a photo that showed what happened to one of our home training aircraft - G-BNIV. It appeared that on landing there was an issue and the aircraft cartwheeled (flipped over and ended up on its roof). Thankfully the student pilot was ok. This happened on March 19.

This has meant the school only has two Cessna 152s now which is a bit of a problem, but hey ho.

Credit: Peter Kray 
The link to the Kent on-line article can be found here

Lesson 43: Cancelled QXC and an Aborted Instrument Flying Lesson

Yesterday (Tuesday 3rd of April) I was meant to do my QXC but like so many before me, come the big day, the weather was borderline and ultimately,'twas not to be. My instructor was great and explained the area of high ground which was the concern. As it transpired he must have had a 6th sense anyway as more drama would have unfolded for sure had I progressed with the flight itself.

I had arranged beforehand though that in the event this would happen I would do a lesson around the Instrument Flying exercise. This is the 1 hour component of the ppl course which covers flying the airplane wearing "foggles" which prevent you seeing anything but the instrument panel. Of course, this is an alien feeling but a really enjoyable and challenging one.

Anyway, let me rewind a second and say that it's good I didn't do my QXC because the airplane my school gave me had a faulty transponder. The display was showing wrong digits for what you typed! Now how was that going to work when being given a squawk code from Farnborough Radar? It wouldn't have. This was a bit disappointing to say the least as it was not in the tech log for the airplane.

So, about the instrument lesson. I was really getting into it when the next problem came along! The vacuum pump failed, suction went dead and I lost the heading indicator and the attitude indicator (artificial horizon)! So , instrument lesson aborted I agreed to do some stalling and recoveries and then head back! The lesson was finished with a Practice Forced Landing (PFL).

The aerodrome was very quiet being a Tuesday. I have rescheduled my QXC for a couple of weeks time.


43. 03/04/12 C152 G-BNKV EGTO EGTO 09:55 10:55 1:00 EX19 (25 minutes), EX10B
HOURS = 37:15 DUAL + 09:10 SOLO

Lesson 42: Preparing For My QXC - A Couple of Circuits

Thursday 29 March, 2012

In preparation for my forthcoming Qualifying Cross Country (QXC) I booked in for a little refresher session. It was to be just a few circuits. We didn't have much time so I just did a couple of circuits with my instructor and then a couple solo. All passed off ok. I guess the main point was really to gain some confidence as I've not the opportunity to fly much lately. For this reason the lesson served me well. It was good to be in an airplane again!

Oh.. and it was a beautiful evening!! 


42. 29/03/12 C152 G-CEPX EGTO EGTO 16:45 17:05 0:20 2-2 EX12/13
42. 29/03/12 C152 G-CEPX EGTO EGTO 17:05 17:25 0:20 2-2 EX12/13
HOURS = 36:15 DUAL + 09:10 SOLO