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Copyright © 2004 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
| ENGINE TLC |
Aircraft engines are sensitive creatures. The engines in most general aviation training aircraft are air cooled-a design that works well during normal cruise flight but requires careful pilot oversight at other times. Download Chapter 5 of the Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge for a discussion of engines and their cooling systems.
Be wary of overheating during extensive ground holding or taxiing, or during maximum-performance climbs, when the combination of high power and relatively low airspeed reduces air flow over the cylinders. In a long descent, or during traffic-pattern work in cold weather, reduce power gradually to avoid shock cooling the engine. "Shock or sudden cooling can lead to expensive problems," writes Mark Twombly in the "Continuing Ed" column from the January 2000 AOPA Flight Training.
In cruise flight, improper engine management or an emerging engine problem may reveal itself as abnormal engine temperature. But how is the pilot to know? In many airplanes, the only clue you may see on the instrument panel is a high oil-temperature reading. This is an indirect and "delayed" indication; learn more in the August 2002 AOPA Flight Training feature, "Red, Green or In Between." Other aircraft may have more sophisticated engine-temperature monitoring capabilities. One system employs a gauge linked to a cylinder-head temperature probe. Twombly explains that system in "What It Looks Like" in the March 2003 AOPA Flight Training.
There are also systems available that help pilots to deal with the effects of temperature extremes. Cowl flaps allow pilots to adjust air flow through the engine compartment to raise or lower engine temperature. They are described in "What It Looks Like" in the April 2001 AOPA Flight Training. In cold climates winterization devices are often installed on aircraft. "Winterization kits, also called 'winter fronts,' are installed to maintain cylinder head temperatures and oil temperatures. On some airplanes these kits also add a restrictor plate to the carburetor air intake to compensate for the dense, cold winter air," explains Steven W. Ells in the December 2000 AOPA Pilot. Does your airplane have any of these features?
It isn't necessary for every pilot to be an aircraft mechanic. But every bit of knowledge you gain about what makes your aircraft tick will help you fly more efficiently and more safely.
| Your Partner in Training |
|Whether you're a VFR pilot, a student taking instrument training, or just need help preparing for that next instrument proficiency check, the 1998 "Instrument Insights" series in AOPA Pilot will provide valuable tips and a great way to review basic instrument technique. |
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 |
| MILITARY PROPOSAL WOULD PUT GA PILOTS IN DANGER, AOPA SAYS |
The Marine Corps has filed paperwork for two proposed military operations areas (MOAs) that, if established, would compress general aviation pilots flying near North Carolina's Outer Banks into an area that the military considers unsafe for its own pilots. The military seeks to create the Core and Mattamuskeet MOAs that would extend from 3,000 feet to 17,999 feet msl. The airspace below 3,000 feet is a known bird strike area. In addition, the proposed Core MOA, which overlies much of the Cape Lookout National Seashore, either forces GA aircraft into Class A airspace or compresses both northeast- and southwest-bound traffic into a 1,000-foot-high corridor below the MOA floor. The Marine Corps has yet to submit its formal request to establish the MOAs. Once it does, the FAA will have the final authority after reviewing public comment. See AOPA Online.
| Inside AOPA |
| SAVE $4 ON YOUR AOPA MEMBERSHIP DUES TODAY |
Did you know that you can save $4 off your membership dues this year if you enroll in AOPA's Automatic Annual Renewal Program? It's easy, and it helps to put more AOPA funds to work for you and general aviation by eliminating the expense of sending membership renewal notices. And if you use an AOPA MasterCard or Visa to enroll, AOPA will continue to discount your membership $2 each year that you automatically renew. It's the best way to ensure continuous AOPA membership for as long as you like. Sign up today or call 800/USA-AOPA.
Changing your mailing or e-mail addresses? Click here to update.
| Training Products |
| STUDY FOR KNOWLEDGE TESTS WITH 'GROUNDSCHOOL' SOFTWARE |
Dauntless Software has released version 5 of its GroundSchool FAA Knowledge (Written) Test Prep software. The CD includes most FAA knowledge tests, including private, commercial, and airline transport pilot, instrument, instrument instructor, flight instructor, and ground instructor exams. A separate code, purchased online, allows you to unlock each exam as you need it, and an automatic online updating system ensures that you get the most recent questions, Dauntless says. The software can also be bundled so that you can purchase several tests at once for a discount. The program requires Windows 95 or better, a Pentium-class CPU, a minimum 128 MB of RAM and a minimum 800 by 600 display and CD-ROM drive. The price is $29.99 for the initial download; $24.99 or less for subsequent downloads. For more information, see the Web site.
| Final Exam |
| Question: What is the distance to the horizon that I can see at sea level? When I am flying, I assume I can see a farther distance since I'm at a higher altitude. How far is that? |
Answer: On a clear day, when standing at sea level, you can see approximately three miles before the Earth's horizon curves away. On that same clear day, you can see about 98 miles from an elevation of one mile. Check out a NASA Web site for the formula.
Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? E-mail to [email protected] or call 800/872-2672. Don't forget the online archive of "Final Exam" questions and answers, searchable by keyword or topic.
| Picture Perfect |
|The AOPA Online Gallery allows you to download your favorite images to use for wallpaper, send a personalized e-card, and order high-quality prints to be shipped directly to your doorstep. Search the hundreds of fabulous images in our archives and select your favorites today! For more details, see AOPA Online. |
| What's New At AOPA Online |
|Airport taxi diagrams are a helpful tool for every pilot's flight bag. If you train at a towered airport, a copy of the airport layout clipped to your kneeboard helps you to remember where you can and cannot go. Students who are planning a cross-country to a strange airport can study the diagram before the flight, and carry it along to use as a reference. Find updated taxi diagrams for more than 475 of the nation's busiest towered airports on AOPA Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS |
Middle River, Maryland. The Glenn L. Martin Maryland Aviation Museum Speaker Series takes place January 5 in the Lockheed Martin Auditorium. Featured speaker is Roy Taylor, a television pilot/reporter for WBAL, on local electronic newsgathering by helicopter. For more information, contact 410/682-6122, or visit the Web site.
Houston, Texas. The Grand Opening of the North Wing of the 1940 Air Terminal Museum takes place January 9 at William P. Hobby Airport (HOU). The celebration will feature vintage aircraft and dignitaries. For more information, visit the Web site.
Upland, California. The Pomona Valley Air Fair takes place January 10 and 11 at Cable Airport (CCB). Sponsored by EAA Chapter 448 and the Pomona Valley Pilots Association. Contact Gary Hart, 909/238-4508, 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 .
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Detroit; Knoxville, Tennessee; and Seattle; January 10 and 11. Clinics are also scheduled in Jackson, Mississippi; Rochester, New York; and San Antonio, Texas; January 17 and 18. 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
The next Pinch-Hitter® Ground School take place in Charlotte, North Carolina, January 25. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Reno, Nevada, January 5; Sacramento, California, January 6; Santa Rose, California, January 7; Oakland, California, January 8; and San Jose, California, January 9. The topic is Maneuvering Flight-Hazardous to Your Health? For complete details, see AOPA Online.