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Copyright © 2003 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
| MAGNETIC PERSONALITY |
Visualize the near-perfect navigational instrument: It has no switches, but there is never a risk of it being in the wrong mode when you need it. It does not depend on satellites or line-of-sight ground transmitters for its signal reception. It runs independently of the aircraft electrical and vacuum system, so the chance of failure caused by dead batteries or malfunctioning air pumps is nil. Every aircraft should have such an excellent instrument-and virtually every aircraft does. It is the "magnetic compass," and it may have been one of the only things that you recognized the first time you sat in the pilot's seat.
If he could have only one instrument on his panel, it would be the compass, writes Ralph L. Butcher in his "Insights" column in the January 2002 AOPA Flight Training. But when you began flight training, you quickly learned that even such an apparently simple, passive gauge requires a sophisticated level of understanding to be used correctly: Its indications must be interpreted after allowing for such possible errors as deviation, caused by local magnetic fields within the aircraft, as well as acceleration or turning errors. Other direction-indicating instruments such as the vacuum-driven heading indicator are accurate only after being set by the compass and periodically cross-checked against it, to prevent error caused by gyroscopic precession. See the excellent discussion about using the magnetic compass in Chapter 6 of the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge ( click here to download).
Practicing compass-only turns or timed turns, which are explained in the September 1997 Flight Training feature "Which Way is West?" by Robert N. Rossier, during training will help you to better cope with a heading-indicator failure on a cross-country. Practicing those techniques, especially when combined with your skill at emergency flight by reference to instruments as described in the February 8, 2002, "Training Tips", might well prove key to dealing with an emergency such as inadvertent flight into instrument meteorological conditions.
See how the skilled pilot uses the magnetic compass in David Montoya's February 2002 AOPA Flight Training feature "Mastering the Flight Instruments". Then add your new understanding of this simple instrument as a cockpit resource to your own set of piloting skills!
| Your Partner in Training |
|No person will be more influential in nurturing your desire to fly than your first flight instructor. A good flight instructor will make the flight training process enjoyable while teaching you the intricacies of flight at a pace that is suitable to your schedule and level of learning. Begin your research by reviewing the AOPA Flight Training magazine archives for helpful articles on selecting an instructor. To find an instructor in your area, go to our searchable database of flight instructors. |
As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online. For login information click here.
| Flight Training News |
| THREAT LEVEL GOES UP, NO AIRSPACE CHANGES FOR MOST PILOTS |
Although the terrorist threat level was raised from yellow to orange Tuesday, there were no new immediate airspace restrictions with the exception of the Washington, D.C., area. The FAA issued notams reestablishing Tipton Airport as the "gateway airport" for aircraft flying to the "DC-3" airports in Maryland (College Park, Washington Executive/Hyde Field, and Potomac Airfield) and suspended waivers for flight in the 15-mile "no-fly" area around Washington. In addition, waivers to the sporting event notam were suspended. "AOPA has worked hard over the preceding weeks to make sure that general aviation is well understood by the decision-makers," said Andy Cebula, an AOPA senior vice president. Pilots are again urged to be vigilant and report any suspicious activities at their airports to Airport Watch by calling 866/GA-SECURE. For more, see AOPA Online.
MARYLAND LEGISLATORS QUESTION PRESIDENTIAL TFRs
Four members of Maryland's congressional delegation have written letters to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge questioning the need for expanded airspace restrictions that exclude virtually all general aviation traffic when the president is on the move. Currently, when President Bush is at Camp David, Maryland, Prohibited Area 40 (P-40) expands to a 10-nm radius. Security officials have proposed making it 30 nm. "At no time in its 61-year history has Camp David been subject to an airspace restriction of this magnitude," according to a letter from representatives Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.) and Ben Cardin (D-Md.). Democratic senators Paul Sarbanes and Barbara Mikulski said in a letter that Maryland airports are already at a disadvantage under the current restrictions. For more, see the news story at AOPA Online.
MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE BUYS 20 TRAINERS
A fleet of 20 Diamond aircraft, including nine two-place DA20-C1 trainers and 11 four-place DA40 Diamond Stars, has been purchased by Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU). There are currently 638 students majoring in aerospace at MTSU, which offers concentrations in administration, maintenance management, professional pilot, technology, and flight dispatch scheduling. "It's been years to get to this point," said Paul Craig, chairman of aerospace. "The planes we have been using these many years don't represent today's technology." For more information on the aviation program at MTSU visit the Web site.
SPORTY'S AWARDS AVIATION EXPLORING SCHOLARSHIPS
Two high school students are to receive $1,000 each from the 2003 Sporty's Pilot Shop Aviation Exploring Scholarship. Aviation Exploring is a youth development program open to young people between the ages of 14 and 20. Fuchsia Davis, 17, of Philadelphia, is a private pilot with more than 250 flight hours who is working on her instrument rating. William J. Simmons, 18, of San Antonio, is a multiengine-rated pilot who has more than 125 hours. Davis and Simmons both aspire to become airline pilots. For more information about the Aviation Exploring program, see the Web site.
PENNSYLVANIA STUDENT WINS GAMA 'AVIATION EXCELLENCE' AWARD
The General Aviation Manufacturers Association has awarded its 2003 Edward W. Stimpson "Aviation Excellence" Award to Jeremy Mumford, a senior at Maplewood High School in Meadville, Pennsylvania. He receives $500, a GAMA spokeswoman said. Mumford plans to attend Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in the fall and aspires to become a U.S. Air Force test pilot. In announcing his award, GAMA cited Mumford's efforts at maintaining a solid scholastic record while being involved in an array of extracurricular activities, including time spent with the Maple Cave Flying Club and a longtime interest in model aeronautics.
| Inside AOPA |
| SWEEPSTAKES WACO WILL BE AT AOPA FLY-IN |
Weather won't keep the AOPA Centennial of Flight Sweepstakes aircraft from appearing at the thirteenth annual AOPA Fly-In and Open House June 7. It can't-because the 1940 Waco UPF-7 biplane is already at AOPA headquarters. Heavy weather kept the Waco from attending the grand opening of the AOPA Pilot Facility at First Flight Airport in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, on May 10, so this will be its first appearance in the Mid-Atlantic region. For information on arrival procedures and driving directions to the Fly-In, see AOPA Online.
AOPA CHIDES MINNESOTA GOVERNOR FOR NUKE PLANT TFR REQUEST
There is absolutely no reason for the FAA or the Transportation Security Administration to issue flight restrictions over Minnesota's nuclear power plants, AOPA President Phil Boyer told Gov. Tim Pawlenty last week. In a letter responding to the governor's calls for temporary flight restrictions (TFRs), Boyer said, "General aviation aircraft do not pose a threat to nuclear power plant safety and...it is inappropriate for the federal government to institute airspace restrictions or allow the closing of vital general aviation airspace or airports in proximity to them."
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| Training Products |
| KNEEBOARD ORGANIZER FROM ZULUWORKS |
It can be as simple as a clipboard balanced on the lap or a fancier rig that straps to the thigh, but few pilots venture aloft without a kneeboard of some kind. The Zuluboard from Zuluworks offers an exterior pocket, interior vertical side pen pockets that can fit a standard mini flashlight for night flight, and another zippered mesh inside pocket for pens, flashlights, or batteries. The board comes with a Zulupad (dual-sided note pads) and six Zulucards (color-coded memory cards for such things as weather minimums and systems management). The Zuluboard sells for $39.95 in ballistic nylon or $44.95 for waxed canvas. For more information or to order, see the Web site.
| Final Exam |
| Question: I'm a student pilot and most of my training has been in a Cessna 152. My instructor has endorsed my logbook for solo flight and I have flown solo a couple of times in the 152. Now I have a chance to do some training in a Cessna 172. Can I fly solo in the airplane after I've become familiar with it? |
Answer: You will need another endorsement in your logbook to fly solo in the Cessna 172. According to 14 CFR 61.87 (l)(2), a student pilot cannot operate an aircraft in solo flight unless that student has received "an endorsement in the student's logbook for the specific make and model aircraft to be flown by an authorized instructor, who gave the training within the 90 days preceding the date of the flight." Since the endorsement you currently have in your logbook is for the 152, an instructor will need to provide another solo endorsement in your logbook for the 172. For more information on solo flight, see "What Dreams are Made Of" and "Congratulations, You've Soloed; Now What?" from AOPA Flight Training magazine.
Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? E-mail to [email protected] or call 800/872-2672. Don't forget the archive of questions and answers from AOPA's ePilot and ePilot Flight Training. FAQs are searchable by keyword or topic.
| Picture Perfect |
Father's Day will be here soon. Order high-quality prints for that special pilot or aviation enthusiast from the AOPA Online Gallery. Search the hundreds of images, select your favorite, and with just a few keystrokes, a print will be shipped directly to your doorstep. Orders must be placed by May 30 for guaranteed delivery. Of course, you can still download your favorite images to use for wallpaper or send a personalized e-card. For more details, see AOPA Online.
| What's New At AOPA Online |
|Thousands of pilots will flock to Philadelphia this October to attend AOPA Expo 2003. You'll find the latest in general aviation information, new gear, and airspace briefings in one convenient location. Not to mention a static display of more than 60 aircraft! For more information or to register, see the Expo page at AOPA Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS |
Millington, Tennessee. The MidSouth Charity Airshow takes place May 31 and June 1 at Millington Municipal Airport (NQA). This world-class event benefits children's charities and features the Navy Blue Angels, Sean Tucker, Jimmy Franklin, Dan McClung, Mary Dilda, Dan Buchanan, Bigfoot, Jim LeRoy, Jan Collmer, Frank Ryder, Kirby Chambliss, Shockwave, and Lee Lauderbac. Contact Dan Ventre, 901/753-1653, or visit the Web site.
Marfa, Texas. The Texas Glider Rally takes place June 1 through July 20 at Marfa Municipal Airport (MRF). Sailplane pilots from around the country gather in West Texas to earn FAI badges and set soaring records. Glider instruction available. Contact Burt Compton, 800/667-9464, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar, or search all events, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For comments on calendar items, contact [email protected].
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Phoenix, Minneapolis, and Austin, Texas, June 7 and 8. Clinics are also scheduled in San Jose, California, and Columbus, Ohio, June 14 and 15. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Renewal Online.
ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitter® Ground School will take place in Columbus, Ohio, June 15. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Frederick, Maryland, June 7. Topics vary; for complete details, see AOPA Online.