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Copyright © 2004 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
| WINDY-DAY ROTATIONS |
Any pilot should revisit basic concepts periodically. As the March 7, 2003, newsletter recommended, crosswind operations make an excellent subject to review on a continuing basis. An important but often overlooked element of a safe crosswind takeoff is a correct rotation. The technique calls for rotating the nose to the takeoff attitude at a slightly higher airspeed than on a normal takeoff. This delayed-rotation method is also employed during takeoffs in gusty winds whether or not a crosswind exists. Why? "During takeoffs in gusty conditions, expect the airplane to lift off earlier in the takeoff roll because of a s udden increase in the headwind component. In a tricycle-gear airplane, you can offset this somewhat with forward pressure on the yoke, holding the airplane on the ground until a faster-than-normal rotation speed is attained. With a faster airspeed, your margin above stall speed is greater, and the settling effects of the headwind shearing to a crosswind or tailwind are diminished," explains Julie K. Boatman in the June 2001 AOPA Pilot column "Ounce of Prevention." Some aircraft pilot's operating handbooks (POH) also call for a more aggressive rotation than usual. Check your POH for specifics.
A related tip: On any takeoff, don't confuse the moment of rotation with the moment of liftoff. Under normal circumstances the airplane will continue accelerating on the ground before the increased angle of attack created by rotation enables flight. Don't rush the process or overrotate-doing so may negate the benefit of the technique. Timing is key. "Rotate too early and drag increases, increasing the takeoff distance. Rotate too late and the airplane could skitter down the runway with the nosewheel on terra firma and the main gear in the air, in a condition commonly called wheelbarrowing," explains Christopher Parker in "Instructor Report" in the April 2003 AOPA Flight Training.
When practicing crosswind operations, be mindful of the crosswind component (read the February 27, 2004, Training Tips) and the demonstrated crosswind velocity of your aircraft, explained by AOPA Air Safety Foundation Executive Director Bruce Landsberg in "Charting the Wind," July 2000 AOPA Flight Training. It is not a limiting value. However, he notes that many instructors consider it an informal limit for safety reasons.
Perfect your rotation technique and see how this simple refinement makes your windy-day takeoffs smoother and easier.
| Your Partner in Training |
|Bird migratory season is now at its peak, which means the possibility of a bird strike is a very real threat to pilots. A two-pound bird can shatter an airplane's windshield or cause structural damage to its wings or empennage. Read AOPA's Aviation Subject Report on Bird/Wildlife Strikes for tips on how to reduce your chances of encountering birds in flight, and what to do if a bird strike is unavoidable. |
Do you have a question? Call our experienced pilots-available weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Eastern toll-free at 800/872-2672. As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online and AOPA Flight Training Online. Login information is available online.
| Flight Training News |
| FORT PIERCE HIT HARD BY HURRICANE FRANCES |
St. Lucie County International Airport at Fort Pierce, Florida, isn't so international-at least temporarily. The U.S. Customs building was put out of operation by Hurricane Frances, along with a maintenance hangar used by Pan Am International Flight Academy. A large hangar used by Mirabella Aviation "imploded," in the words of Airport Operations Manager Barbara Churchill, damaging 19-passenger Albatross amphibian aircraft and several smaller Grumman antique amphibian aircraft undergoing restoration. LanShe Aerospace, a factory closed in recent months by legal battles, suffered damage. It is believed that most of the damage came from tornados. A Florida Department of Transportation official said St. Lucie suffered the worst damage he had seen during a tour of Stuart, Fort Pierce, and Vero Beach, Florida. The New Piper Aircraft had several buildings damaged, and the company is expected to be closed for a week while the National Guard uses the Piper ramp for emergency operations. At Palm Beach International several hangars were damaged. At North Palm Beach County General Aviation airport in West Palm Beach, two large hangars were damaged. In one, a large door blew in allowing aircraft to be blown against the back wall, and the roof blew off, landing on cars in a parking lot. For more see AOPA Online.
WAI ANNOUNCES 2005 SCHOLARSHIPS
Women in Aviation International (WAI) has posted a glittering array of scholarship opportunities for 2005, including funds for flight training, aviation education, type ratings, tailwheel training, and much more. AOPA Flight Training magazine is among the sponsors, offering a scholarship for two students to attend the sixteenth annual International Women in Aviation Conference, March 10 through 12, 2005, in Houston, Texas. You must be a member of WAI to apply, and many of the scholarships have specific requirements in addition to WAI's guidelines. Applications are due December 3. Complete descriptions of the scholarships and an application can be found at WAI's Web site. To request an application, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
RUNWAY JUDGMENT TRAINING ADDED TO FLIGHTSAFETY PROGRAM
FlightSafety International has added a new simulator training component aimed at teaching flight crews how to prevent runway excursions, or situations in which a landing or departing aircraft unintentionally rolls off the runway. So-called excursions can result in a rough ride on an unprepared surface or cause landing gear to collapse. The program enables a simulator instructor to create marginal operating conditions by controlling runway length, width, and weather at a specific airport or an "Anytown" facility. The flight crew must decide if proposed takeoff or landing operations are safe, and they'll experience "realistic into-the-cockpit feedback" should a runway excursion occur.
| Inside AOPA |
| AOPA ASKS FAA TO RE-EVALUATE PROPOSED DOME |
AOPA has petitioned the FAA to reconsider its "no hazard" determination for a plan to erect a 70-foot translucent dome over a soccer field near Sikorsky Memorial Airport, in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The dome would be located 380 feet from the threshold of Runway 11, and AOPA contends that it could pose a hazard to pilots circling to land in instrument conditions or could generate strong turbulence or wind shear on the approach to the runway. The FAA has agreed to review the petition. If the decision is reversed, the action will likely stop construction of the building. See the complete story on AOPA Online.
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.
| Training Products |
| PILOT USA HEADSETS FEATURE CELL PHONE INTERFACE |
As cell phone use in the cockpit becomes more common, it's no surprise that avionics manufacturers are hurrying to keep up with the trend. Pilot USA adds two moderately priced headset options to the mix with the 11-81T and 21-70T. Both provide passive noise reduction and come with cell phone/satellite phone interface and an auxiliary interface for listening to an audible checklist or music. The 11-81T features a push-to-talk button on the ear cup, weighs 13.4 ounces, and includes a fleece head pad and gel ear seals. The 21-70T weighs 10.9 ounces and comes with a foam head pad and foam ear seals. PilotMall.com sells the 11-81T for $169.99 and the 21-70T for $139.99. Visit the Web site for more information or to order.
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.
| Final Exam |
| Question: With regard to maintenance records, what is time in service and how is it tracked? |
Answer: Time in service, with respect to maintenance time records, means the time from the moment an aircraft leaves the ground until it touches down at the next point of landing or, to put it more simply, the time the aircraft is airborne. Tracking this airborne time with complete accuracy is virtually impossible, because there is no instrument generic to all airplanes that tracks only airborne time (although some aircraft have instruments that come close to doing this). Hobbs meters and tachometers track time from engine start to shutdown, and of course, a fraction of that time is ground time. However, for consistency across the board (and for lack of a better way to do it) time in service is, in fact, tracked with either a Hobbs meter or a tachometer. The result is that each 100 hours of Hobbs or tach time actually may be only 90 hours of airborne time and 10 hours of ground time. Nevertheless, the Hobbs' or tachometer's 100-hour cycle is what is used to determine 100 hours of time in service. For more information on maintenance inspections, visit AOPA Online.
Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to email@example.com 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.
| 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 |
|Pilots who use AOPA's Airport eDirectory for personal computer or personal digital assistant can download updated files from AOPA Online. You may download the entire 5.1-MB database or individual states. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| FLYING DESTINATIONS THIS WEEKEND: |
Akron, Colorado. The National Radial Engine Exhibition takes place September 11 at Colorado Plains Regional (AKO). Static exhibition of radial engine powered aircraft from the 1920s through 1950s. All sizes of military and civil aviation represented. Fly-in visitors encouraged. Contact Randy Hayes, 970/345-2397.
El Monte, California. A Wings/FAA Seminar/Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) Weekend takes place September 11 at Fast Aviation, El Monte (EMT) from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Topics: high altitude sign-off, basic survival for GA pilots with Edwards AFB "Desert Survival," spatial disorientation simulator, and anti-terrorist training for GA. Free to attend. Contact Mark Galloway, 310/215-2150, or visit the Web site.
Petersburg, Virginia. The Eighth Annual Virginia State EAA Fly-in takes place September 18 and 19 at Dinwiddie County (PTB). Includes: forums, workshops, vendors, kids tent, and afternoon airshow. Pancake breakfast each day, aircraft judging, and camping. Contact DeWitt Whittington, 804/358-4333, or visit the Web site.
Jeffersonville, Indiana. Kentucky Wings Weekend takes place September 17 through 19 at Clark County (JVY). Just across the river from Louisville, Kentucky, Clark County is the site of the annual Kentucky Wings Weekend. More than two dozen safety seminars on a variety of subjects will be presented during the three-day event. Contact Bruce Edsten, 502/753-4246 or 502/753-4200.
Kansas City, Missouri. The International Comanche Society Convention takes place September 14 through 19 at Charles B. Wheeler Downtown (MKC). See the AOPA Win-A-Twin 1965 Piper Twin Comanche, attend Comanche maintenance seminars, listen to guest speaker AOPA President Phil Boyer, and visit with Comanche parts vendors. Contact Darryll Norris, convention chairman, 785/594-2394, or visit the Web site.
Bartlesville, Oklahoma. The Tulsa Regional Fly-in takes place September 17 and 18 at Bartlesville Municipal (BVO). Experience the excitement of colorful sport aviation airplanes at one of the 10 largest sport aviation fly-ins in the United States. The fly-in normally attracts approximately 500 aircraft for the two-day event. Public admission: donation. Contact Charles W. Harris, 918/622-8400, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online .
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER COURSES
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Courses are scheduled in Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Richmond, Virginia, September 18 and 19. Courses are also scheduled in San Jose, California, and Indianapolis, October 2 and 3. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Renewal Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in East Windsor, Connecticut, Atlanta, and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, September 13; Worcester, Massachusetts, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and Maryville, Tennessee, September 14; Billerica, Massachusetts, New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, and Murphreesboro, Tennessee, September 15; and Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Cheswick, Pennsylvania, and Memphis, Tennessee, September 16. The seminar is GPS: Beyond Direct-To. For complete details on topics and schedules, see AOPA Online.