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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition -- Vol. 5, Issue 40AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Flight Training Edition -- Vol. 5, Issue 40

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Volume 5, Issue 40 • October 7, 2005
In this issue:
Western Michigan University chooses Cirrus aircraft
Regional airline recruits FlightSafety grads
ADIZ alert: AOPA calls on members for action


MBNA Credit Card Program


Sporty's Pilot Shop

DTC Duat

Minnesota Life Insurance

Comm1 Radio Simulator

Scheyden Eyewear

King Schools

Garmin International

Pilot Insurance Center

Do not reply to this e-mail. Got news? Contact ePilot. Having difficulty using this service? Visit the ePilot Frequently Asked Questions now at AOPA Online or write to [email protected].

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Copyright © 2005 AOPA.

National Pilot Alert
Take action now! It only takes 15 minutes to help protect your freedom to fly. Tell the FAA not to make the ADIZ permanent. See details below.

Training Tips
What kind of engine oil does your aircraft use? How is that engine cooled in flight? Is the aircraft's battery installed under the cowling or somewhere back in the tail cone? Speaking of the electrical system, must you turn on every piece of electrical equipment separately, or is there an avionics master switch installed to simplify the process? These are some of the questions a pilot can answer with confidence after studying the texts referenced for Task G: Operation of Systems in the Area of Operations covering preflight preparation in the Practical Test Standards for the private pilot flight test. See the PTS task for the aircraft systems that pilots must be able to explain.

"You cannot command what you don't understand. An acceptable level of understanding demands questions, curiosity, and probing on your part," counsels Dave Wilkerson, writing from a designated examiner's point of view in "Checkride: Tests Are About Systems" in the November 2002 AOPA Flight Training. Source material is easy to find. The texts cited at the top of the PTS task describe general design principles. Next, move on to your pilot's operating handbook, which gives specifics for your trainer. To confirm that you really understand system design and function, draw a simple schematic or diagram. Want to make your examiner smile with admiration? Go the extra mile and talk to a mechanic or an avionics technician about the systems' strengths and weaknesses. Note what this skilled professional's experience teaches about the systems you use in the air.

What if you go out to fly and discover that something isn't working? It's not uncommon. Can you still fly? Should you still fly? A "yes" answer to the first question is not always an affirmative response to the second. Light training aircraft are not subject to the minimum equipment list (MEL) regulations covering airliners and advanced aircraft, but read Chip Wright's March 2005 AOPA Pilot article "A Personal MEL: A list for effectively using your airplane while maximizing safety" for insights into how pilots flying aircraft with many systems strike the right balance. Then explain to your examiner how the systems knowledge that you have already acquired, combined with the experience you gain, will always lead you to make the right call about your flying.

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 fun while challenging you to learn. Begin your research with a Flight Training magazine article on finding the right instructor. To find an instructor in your area, visit our searchable database of flight instructors.

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
Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo is replacing its existing single-engine fleet with Cirrus SR20 and SR22 aircraft. The university has signed a 10-year lease agreement with Cirrus Design by which the aircraft will be replaced every two years. WMU is set to take delivery of the first aircraft in October, with the transition to be completed by summer 2006. Cirrus says the 10-year agreement will eventually provide WMU with at least 130 aircraft. "With these aircraft, we'll meet or exceed the training standards of the commercial airline industry, and we'll be able to provide the best possible learning outcomes for our students," said Rick Maloney, dean of WMU's College of Aviation. Cirrus predicts the switch will provide a reduction in the university's aircraft maintenance costs by as much as 60 percent. For more information on WMU, see the Web site.

Trans States Airlines has joined the list of carriers that have recruited FlightSafety Academy graduates for first officer positions, FlightSafety announced. Trans States is a regional feeder airline for American, United Airlines, and US Airways. It flies to 70 cities in 29 states with two hubs of operation. Headquartered in St. Louis, Trans States operates a fleet of 71 Embraer RJ145 regional jets. For more information about FlightSafety International, or Trans States Airlines, see their Web sites.

The Civil Aviation Flying University of China has agreed to purchase three Ascent Cessna 172 Skyhawk flight training devices (FTDs) from Mechtronix Systems Inc. of Montreal. The FTDs will be used for primary training at the university's simulation training center in the People's Republic of China. Mechtronix's announcement comes about six weeks after Cessna Aircraft announced that it received an order for 42 Skyhawks, including 20 to be equipped with Garmin G1000 glass cockpit panels and avionics, from China. For more information about Mechtronix FTDs, see the Web site.

Inside AOPA

AOPA members, watch your mail. In the next few days, you'll be receiving an AOPA National Pilot Alert asking you to take action to prevent a future air defense identification zone (ADIZ) from restricting your freedom to fly in your area. "The threat is very real," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "If the FAA makes the Washington, D.C., ADIZ permanent, it will set a dangerous precedent, creating the possibility of IFR-like flight restrictions within the footprint of every Class B airspace." AOPA believes the threat is so serious that it has issued only its third national pilot alert in more than a decade. The association is asking every one of its more than 406,000 members to lodge a protest with the FAA and send a copy to Congress. The "temporary" ADIZ has been a permanent fixture of the Washington-Baltimore Class B airspace since it was hastily imposed over a weekend during the run-up to war in Iraq more than two years ago. A similar ADIZ has been imposed several times around New York City, but it has lasted only a short time in each case. And some security officials have indicated they'd like to see ADIZ restrictions around other major cities. The AOPA National Pilot Alert asks members to file comments opposing the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would make the ADIZ permanent. For assistance with filing your comments, see "What to say about the ADIZ" and AOPA's Member Action Center: Operation ADIZ.

The descent and landing phases of every flight are particularly important, so the AOPA Air Safety Foundation created the Last Five Miles Safety Seminar to provide pilots with techniques to make that final stretch safe and enjoyable. Information and a video clip from that live seminar are posted in the "Now Featuring" section of the AOPA Online Safety Center. Nearly 6,000 attendees have learned three reasons why pilots should descend early (and one instance in which that would be a mistake), when a straight-in approach can be safe and legal, and how to safely handle traffic pattern conflicts. The free seminar is open to all pilots and runs through November. Visit the AOPA Online Safety Center for a complete schedule.

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
Lots of pilots are tongued-tied when it comes to talking on the radio and with good reason. It's important to communicate properly so as not to tie up the airwaves and aggravate air traffic control. A new book from Aviation Supplies and Academics Inc. offers help. Aviation Radio Communications Made Easy: VFR Edition by Hugh C. Ward Jr., utilizes templates that function as a script for VFR flights. (An IFR edition is also available.) The idea is to take these templates with you in the cockpit and use them as memory aids, training tools, and confidence builders during your flight. You fill out most of the blanks in the template during preflight, tear them out of the spiral-bound book, and fix them to a kneeboard; multiple copies of each template are included. The 280-page soft-cover book sells for $19.95 and may be ordered online or by calling 800/426-8338.

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: Once I complete my private pilot training in a single-engine land airplane, can I fly any single-engine land airplane as the pilot in command?

Answer: Yes, provided you also have any required endorsements. For example, tailwheel, complex, and high-performance airplanes and aircraft capable of operating at high altitudes will require further training for you to act as pilot in command (PIC) if your initial flight training did not include it. A complex airplane is one with retractable landing gear, flaps, and a controllable-pitch propeller. A high-performance airplane has an engine with more than 200 horsepower. A high-altitude aircraft is pressurized and has a service ceiling or maximum operating altitude of, whichever is lower, above 25,000 feet mean sea level. To show that you have received the appropriate training in a tailwheel, complex, or high-performance airplane or high-altitude aircraft, you need to receive and log ground and flight training and get a logbook endorsement from an authorized instructor. For further information on these and other endorsements and their requirements, you can view FAR 61.31. Also review AOPA's aviation subject report on ratings and endorsements as well as one on transitioning to high-performance aircraft.

Got a question for our technical services staff? E-mail to [email protected] 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 images in our archives and select your favorites today! For more details, see AOPA Online.

What's New At AOPA Online
What's involved in getting a tailwheel endorsement? What are the cross-country requirements for the instrument rating? Where do you find a flight school that offers seaplane instruction? What is the difference between a rating and an endorsement? AOPA lays it all out for you in the aviation subject report, Ratings and Endorsements .

Weekend Weather
See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix.

ePilot Calendar
Casa Grande, Arizona. The Copperstate EAA Regional Fly-in takes place October 6 through 9 at Casa Grande Municipal (CGZ). Don't miss this popular event, featuring daily airshows, forums, exhibitors, and more. For more information, see the Web site.

Sedona, Arizona. The Commander Owners Group Fly-in takes place October 7 through 9 at Sedona (SEZ). Fly your Commander in and meet AOPA President Phil Boyer, plus get up close to the refurbished AOPA Countdown Commander Sweepstakes 112A. For more information, see the Web site.

Atlanta, Georgia. The Great Georgia Airshow takes place October 8 and 9 at Peachtree City-Falcon Field (FFC). Featuring Gene Soucy, Flying Farmer, Paul Stender Jet Truck, B-17, A-10 demo, P-51, SBD-5, F-86, Red Eagle Team, F-16, and others. Contact Jerry Cobb, 678/478-4630, or visit the Web site.

San Angelo, Texas. The Rio Concho Airshow takes place October 8 and 9 at San Angelo Regional/Mathis Field (SJT). Featuring the Lima Lima Flight Team, West Coast demonstration F-15 team, F-86 Heritage, Bob Carlton's Silent Wings, and many more attractions! Contact Amber Simmons, 325/659-6409 ext. 4, 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.

The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic is scheduled in Wichita, Kansas, October 15 and 16. Courses are also scheduled in Windsor, Connecticut, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, October 22 and 23. 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 are scheduled in Lake Worth, Florida, and Greenville, South Carolina, October 10; Tampa, Florida, and Atlanta, October 11; Birmingham, Alabama, and Jacksonville, Florida, October 12; and Huntsville, Alabama, and Orlando, Florida, October 13. For topic information and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

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