February 1, 2008
In this issue: Dowling College appoints new dean of aviation CFI advice as close as your computer AOPA's Get Your Glass gets new paint scheme
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FLAPS: WHEN AND WHY Most student pilots train in aircraft equipped with flaps. In the traffic pattern, the flaps are typically deployed gradually, starting abeam the runway numbers and ending with full deployment on final approach. Many students ask: Why not deploy the flaps all at once?
"Large flap deflections at one single point in the landing pattern produce large lift changes that require significant pitch and power changes in order to maintain airspeed and descent angle. Consequently, the deflection of flaps at certain points in the landing pattern has definite advantages. Incremental deflection of flaps on downwind, base leg, and final approach allow smaller adjustment of pitch and power compared to extension of full flaps all at one time," explains Chapter 8 of the Airplane Flying Handbook.
Here is how a flight instructor described the method in a "Flight Forum" letter in the December 2005 issue of AOPA Flight Training: "When teaching landings in a Cessna or Piper training aircraft, I have the student use one notch of flaps and trim when abeam the numbers. From here, the remaining flaps are used to adjust the aircraft's descent to the touchdown point. If the pattern is a normal-sized pattern (the turn from base to final will be slightly more than a quarter-mile from the runway), and the headwinds on final are light, the second notch of flaps will be applied when they are needed to keep from landing long. This typically occurs just before turning from base to final. The third and last notch of flaps is applied when the landing is assured."
But don't let that comfortable routine make you complacent. Unusual winds, extending your downwind leg for spacing, or getting instructions from the tower to "make short approach" [described in the May 26, 2006, Training Tip ] may call for other techniques (and don't forget to perform some no-flap landings).
During dual sessions of airwork, it will help if you spend some time practicing holding heading and altitude at approach airspeeds while changing flap configurations—full flaps, no flaps, and everything in between—to learn the aircraft's responses and the power-pitch inputs required. With some practice, you'll be ready for whatever kind of landing is called for next!
The checklist is one of the least expensive yet most effective safety devices available in the cockpit. Not following a checklist could have dire consequences. Check out this informative and perhaps life-saving article from the March 2000 issue of AOPA Flight Training and continue to search the magazine's archives for a wealth of information to help you achieve your goal of obtaining your pilot certificate.
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DOWLING COLLEGE APPOINTS NEW DEAN OF AVIATION Dowling College in Oakdale, N.Y., has named John Wensveen the new dean of aviation. Wensveen was most recently president of Washington, D.C.-based Airline Visions, and he is considered one of the aviation industry's leading experts on low-fare high-value airline operations, the college said. He was vice president of international development for MAXjet Airways and was also professor of airline management and operations at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He is the author of Air Transportation: A Management Perspective, and Wheels Up: Airline Business Plan Development. For more information on Dowling College, see the Web site.
CAREERS IN AVIATION NAMES YOUNG PILOT AS CHAIRMAN Jamail Larkins, who in 2004 barnstormed 20 cities in a Cirrus SR20 to promote aviation careers, has a new title to add to his résumé: He has been named chairman of the board of Careers in Aviation, a nonprofit organization that promotes aerospace education and employment. Larkins became the organization's national spokesman in 2002. A 2006 graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Larkins will serve a three-year term on the board.
CFI ADVICE AS CLOSE AS YOUR COMPUTER You've got a burning question about crosswind landings, but you can't get in touch with your flight instructor. Or maybe you're wondering if your training is progressing as it should. The advice of flight instructors and fellow students is as close as your computer with AOPA Online's "Left Seat/Right Seat" Forum. You'll find valuable insights into the toughest training challenges, like the student who asked for help with landing in gusty winds and received a collection of tips and tricks from his peers and more experienced pilots. Ask your questions, read about the challenges other students are facing, or explore any of a dozen forums on AOPA Online.
AOPA'S GET YOUR GLASS AIRPLANE GETS NEW PAINT SCHEME Paint scheme voting for AOPA's 2008 Get Your Glass Sweepstakes Piper Archer is over, and a winner has been chosen. View the winning choice on AOPA Online. Also this week, learn what it takes to get an airplane ready to be painted. You might be surprised to learn that it takes more time to prepare an airplane to be painted than to actually apply the coats.
PILOTS FIND ONLINE COURSES ARE THE PERFECT LUNCH DATE Trying to find some extra time in the day to increase your aviation knowledge? Try your lunch break. Dave Clark of Bartow, Fla., completes the AOPA Air Safety Foundation's online courses during his lunch hour. "Working many hours and trying to keep up with what's new at the end of a busy day is difficult," Clark wrote in a recent note to the foundation. "The length of the courses is great for lunch time." Clark said that he flies 50 to 60 hours each year, so the foundation's courses provide him with credible information to keep his aviation knowledge fresh. Try a course during your lunch hour. If you get interrupted, your progress is automatically saved. Some courses qualify for the AOPA Insurance Agency's Accident Forgiveness program and FAA Wings credit.
HAVE YOU UPDATED YOUR AOPA MEMBER PROFILE? To make the most of your membership and allow us to serve you better, please visit AOPA Online and update your personal member profile.
SPORTY'S INTRODUCES NONPILOT'S GUIDE TO FLYING DVD You're close to taking your checkride, and you can't wait for the day when at long last you can take your significant other for a ride and a $100 hamburger. But that person isn't a pilot, and he or she just isn't sure about the whole idea of going flying with you. Here's an opportunity to introduce your future flying companion to the joys of flight with a DVD designed specifically for nonpilots. Introduction to Flying: A Non-Pilot's Guide from Sporty's explains everything in layman's terms, not pilot jargon, with the intention of "taking the mystery" out of what you do and why you do it. The 56-minute program is available on DVD or for direct download for $29.95, and it can be ordered online or by calling 800/SPORTYS.
Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.
Question: I occasionally become confused about how to anticipate and enter the proper traffic pattern when flying into an unfamiliar airport. Do you have any suggestions to help me out before my next cross-country flight?
Answer: During your preflight planning, consider drawing out the layout of the runway(s) on your navigation log and labeling each end appropriately. Next, based upon your direction of flight to the airport, place an "x and arrow" to represent your aircraft's inbound flight path toward the airport. This will allow you to visualize how to enter and/or modify your flight path into the proper traffic pattern once you determine what runway is in use at a nontowered airport or obtain clearance instructions from air traffic control at a towered airport. For more information on use of runways, see Chapter 4, Section 3, "Airport Operations," of the Aeronautical Information Manual.
Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Pilot Information Center, 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
One of the most rewarding experiences in aviation is using your piloting skills to take you and your family or friends on a scenic adventure. Read about Fred Simpson's special trip with his wife, Janice, in "Around Georgian Bay", the latest installment in the "Joy of Flight" series.
UPCOMING FLYING DESTINATIONS: Casa Grande, Ariz. The Fifth Annual Arizona Flying Circus takes place Feb. 8 through 10 at the Francisco Grande Resort. For more information, visit the Web site.
River Ranch, Fla. Lakeathon 2008 takes place Feb. 10 through 14 at River Ranch Resort (2RR). Contact Marc Rodstein, 561/483-6566, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.
FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Melbourne, Fla., Louisville, Ky., Las Vegas, Oklahoma City, and Reston, Va., Feb. 9 and 10. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.
AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION SAFETY SEMINARS AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Little Rock, Ark., and Ocala, Fla., Feb. 4; Fayetteville, Ark., Tampa, Fla., and Nashville, Tenn., Feb. 5; Melbourne, Fla., and Oklahoma City, Feb. 6; and Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Wichita, Kan., and Germantown, Tenn., Feb. 7. The topic is "Top 5 Mistakes Pilots Make." For details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.
Pilot Training and Certification,
Safety and Education,
The FAA encourages pilots to do a number of things in order to increase safety, but does not require them. Check out these three actions that are recommended.
Among the very first lessons a pilot learns is that a control yoke is not a steering wheel. Research underway in Europe could change that.
Your CFII usually follows up route-planning drilling with a review of appropriate regulations, and today’s selection is 14 CFR 91.185, "IFR Operations: Two-way radio communications failure."
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