https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/182-climbing.jpg 868 1414 David Hughes /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg David Hughes2021-03-18 08:57:132021-03-09 17:40:20Bam!
I performed a pre-flight on our Cessna 182 and all was well. Linda arrived, we loaded the groceries into the back seat and launched on an IFR plan to Page. We left Chino, California, at about 2 pm. Just as we pulled out of the LA Basin and leveled off at 10,000 feet, configured the mixture and prop and set the autopilot, BAM! I lost a cylinder.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Restored-Aeronca.jpg 1140 1750 Dan Long /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Dan Long2021-03-17 09:11:172021-04-13 11:20:26Civilian Pilot Training in a pre-war Aeronca Chief
Initially, I was uncertain about acquiring another airplane. I had owned a Cessna 172 until financial circumstances forced me to give it up. But my spouse stated that I “needed a project” to get my mind off the challenges at work. So, in fall 2009, I committed without realizing how much time and effort would be required to restore an old Aeronca.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/image-asset.jpeg 675 900 Gino Federici /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Gino Federici2021-03-16 09:05:572021-03-09 17:22:08An Alaska Highway flight gone wrong
George was one of my most ardent fans. A pilot, we’d often rent planes and fly formation around Southern Alaska. We would take friends along and have some glorious times together. Over the months we dreamed of one day being able to fly the Alaska Highway. What an adventure that would be.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Beech-Sport.jpg 894 1200 Skip Curtis /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Skip Curtis2021-03-10 08:44:352021-03-02 17:18:39Engine hiccups: third time is the charm?
After eating and preflighting, we departed runway 34. At about 500 feet the engine did a quick hiccup. We both looked at each other and I said, "let's stay in the pattern for a few minutes and see if the incident happens again."
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/PW1830onDak.jpg 801 1200 Steve Jordan /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Steve Jordan2021-03-04 09:22:342021-03-04 12:08:29“We was on fire; I could see the flames!”
A DC-3 is never quiet, but for late night departures, we sometimes would reduce the power a little earlier for noise abatement. Just as I trimmed the RPMs to 2300, the right engine cut loose with a cacophony of explosions that resembled a 10-gauge shotgun being fired right next to my ear. The engine was backfiring. Badly.
/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg 0 0 Al Chaulk /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Al Chaulk2021-03-02 08:45:442021-03-02 09:24:58A day in the life of a fledgling instructor
It was an anxious moment. With palms sweating and sweat rings around my armpits I was hoping that my first student was truly ready to slip the surly bonds of earth. Hopefully I didn’t forget to instill any critical kernels of knowledge. Mark was probably thinking along the same lines and was sweating every bit as badly as I was.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Cub-on-grass-at-Sportys.jpg 640 960 Tom Matowitz /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Tom Matowitz2021-03-01 09:05:472021-03-01 10:45:09Almost a ground loop
I started with the stick well back. The engine was producing full power. I pushed the stick forward. Right at the point of lift off there was an abrupt swerve to the right. I closed the throttle and held the stick firmly back, planted in my ribs.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/ZUG-on-ramp-NZ.jpg 975 1300 Gary Schank /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Gary Schank2021-02-24 08:55:072021-02-24 09:16:10A flying gig in New Zealand
After flying for a major airline more than 28 years, I reached the mandatory retirement age. I loved every minute of it, and I had no desire to retire. So, I began to research options so that I could continue commercial flying. As I scanned the internet, I came across a flying opportunity in New Zealand. A small airline was looking for a chief pilot.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Bill-Sabo-DC-3-Spooky-Gunship.jpg 565 800 William Sabo /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg William Sabo2021-02-23 08:47:492021-02-18 14:31:50The day I really graduated to airline pilot
Many senior pilots at Eastern regarded new hires as a "kid who didn't have enough common sense to come in out of the rain." This condescending attitude was particularly true of some of the older WWII captains flying the DC-8 at the time. Their view of your engineer status and job was simply, "get the fuel on board, sit down, shut up, and keep your feet off the seat."
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/img133.jpg 600 591 Ed McDonald /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Ed McDonald2021-02-18 09:20:372021-02-11 18:23:09Thirty years of floatplane flying in Canada
In the spring of 1970 my friend Bob purchased a 1953 Cessna 180 on floats. It also had skis for winter. He and his friend had been moose hunting in Canada by living out of a lean-to basic tent. They wanted to build a moose hunting and fishing shack on a remote lake up there. I knew how to build so he included me in the adventure. I jumped at the chance.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Queen-Air-in-flight.jpg 532 1060 Steve Dalton /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Steve Dalton2021-02-17 09:01:102021-02-11 17:51:47A Queen Air sheds a propeller
On the evening of November 8, 1968, a Pilgrim Airlines twin-engine Beechcraft took off from Bradley International Airport with only a pilot and co-pilot aboard. Shortly after take off, when the flight was about five miles southeast of the airport, the aircraft suddenly lost a three-blade propeller from one of the engines and was forced to return to the airport and make an emergency landing.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Cessna-with-trucks.jpg 1125 1500 Frank Ladonne /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Frank Ladonne2021-02-16 09:24:082021-02-11 17:23:56If it can fail, it will (and anything can fail)
About midway through the clouds, my JPI engine monitor began alerting us to a rapidly dropping bus voltage. Shortly after, we watched our GTN 650 GPS turn into a screen of flashes and hieroglyphics. I immediately leveled the wings, stopped my climb and leveled off (Rule 1 – Fly the plane!).
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/bramptonairport.jpg 714 1000 Gus Piliotis /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Gus Piliotis2021-02-10 08:53:442021-02-10 12:18:44Two exciting landings in 21 years of flying
Everything was going perfectly until I turned base leg and heard my very first mayday call. It was a pilot of a Cessna 172, who had just taken off on runway 33. He was experiencing power loss, and called out that he didn't think he could fly the circuit because he had three passengers on board, so he was attempting to make a turn around and land on runway 15.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/maxresdefault-4.jpg 720 1280 Pavol Varga /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Pavol Varga2021-02-09 09:22:292021-02-02 17:26:15Read the NOTAM—my conflict with Air Force One
I tied down the plane and went up to the office to pay the fee. On departure (remember, the beer!), the friendly gentleman mentioned—just by the way—that the airspace over Warsaw was about to be closed from 10pm that day (Friday) until 10pm the following Monday. The reason? The US President was about to fly in to commemorate the outbreak of WWII.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Swift-in-hangar.jpg 900 1200 Douglas Evans /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Douglas Evans2021-02-08 10:01:102021-02-08 10:03:51I could never be so lucky again
Zach put his iPhone flashlight to use in the only shadow to be found in the brilliant blue aloft. “Dad! Oil is pooling at my feet.” Instinctively I began a 180-degree turn to the last airport we flew over—a life boat in the distance known as Silver Wings Airpark (TS36). I traded airspeed for altitude and resisted the urge to command more from my faithful Continental by pushing up the power, knowing now the race against time had begun.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/BeaufortTwinOtter.jpg 896 1200 David Dickins /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg David Dickins2021-02-02 09:06:142021-02-02 10:29:39Runways optional: Twin Otter tales from the Arctic
In the 1970s and early 90s, I was fortunate to fly with many different Twin Otters and operators on combinations of straight skis, wheel skis, mixed nose ski and wheels, high flotation tires, and floats. Using these aircraft to support our research took me all over the vast landscape of the Canadian Arctic, ranging from Tuktoyaktuk in the Beaufort Sea to the High Arctic Islands and east to the Canada/Greenland border in Baffin Bay.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/AA-1B-on-ramp.jpg 710 1200 Steven Phraner /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Steven Phraner2021-01-28 09:22:322021-01-28 10:18:33One in a million solo
It all began at the Hawaii Country of the Air, based at Honolulu International Airport. I was scraping oxidation off airplane wings to help pay for lessons. One fine weather day, having acquired 10 hours of dual instruction, my instructor decided I would fly to Ford Island in Pearl Harbor for touch and gos.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/DC-3-on-ramp.jpg 766 1300 Steve Jordan /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Steve Jordan2021-01-20 10:03:212021-01-12 17:54:08If something goes wrong, undo what you last did
“We probably ought to get some fuel out of the back, don’t you think?” I asked. A man of very few words, Doug said, “yep.” Doug reached up, and I watched him rotate the fuel selector to the right rear position. I reached up about two seconds later and switched my fuel selector to the left rear tank position. After another two seconds, it got quiet. Real quiet. As in no engine noise at all.
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Crew-car.jpg 572 802 Scott Humphries /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Scott Humphries2021-01-14 09:15:512021-01-11 15:19:48How I almost got shot over a courtesy car
I moved the picnic table out of the way, got in the SUV, fired up the reluctant engine and turned on the lights to make my way the 125 feet or so from the hangar to the plane to unpack my bike and other gear. Then… "GET OUT OF THE CAR! GET THE HELL OUT OF THE CAR!"
https://airfactsjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Standing-by-airplane-70s.jpg 795 1200 Dave Powers /wp-content/uploads/2021/03/logo2.jpg Dave Powers2021-01-11 09:47:202021-01-08 18:20:22Finally… back in the left seat again
There are rusty pilots and then there are RUSTY pilots. I was a RUSTY pilot, having not been PIC in the left seat of an airplane in 40.7 years. Half of a lifetime! As many of you, there existed a love for airplanes since childhood. Growing up, Sky King reruns started the dream and gave me an appetite to experience flight.
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