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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content --Vol. 6, Issue 38AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content --Vol. 6, Issue 38

The following stories from the September 17, 2004, edition of AOPA ePilot were provided to AOPA members who expressed an interest in the particular subject areas. Any AOPA member can receive information customized to their areas of interest by updating their member record file online.

My ePilot - Jet Interest
Blended winglets, which are common on commercial jets, are now FAA certified for the Raytheon Hawker 800 series of jets. Aviation Partners Inc., the company that developed Advanced Technology Blended Winglet Systems, claims that the winglets allow the Hawker to fly 30 minutes longer, 180 nautical miles farther, 18 knots faster, and toachieve a 2,000-foot higher initial cruise altitude. More than 70 percent of the Gulfstream II line is equipped with the technology. For more information, see the Web site.

My ePilot - Own/May Own Interest
The Eagle Protection Aircraft Owner's Policy (underwritten by First American Transportation Title Insurance Company and provided by AOPA Service Corp.) now offers even greater protection for aircraft purchasers. In addition to offering protection against ownership disputes, forgery of documents, and fraud, the policy now provides coverage of up to $25,000 for state tax liens and $250,000 for federal tax liens not appearing in FAA records.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Tips
The September 10, 2004, "Training Tips" discussed how to manage the effects of crosswinds or gusts on takeoff by delaying rotation until a higher-than-usual speed is reached. But what should you do when facing a takeoff or other flight situation that seems to demand using two conflicting techniques?

An example is taking off from a soft field in gusty conditions. A soft-field takeoff is performed employing an early rotation; a gusty-wind takeoff calls for delaying rotation until airspeed will guarantee positive control after liftoff in unsteady winds. Can you do both? How should you respond if a designated pilot examiner asks this question during a checkride? Here is a guideline: "In your answers, remember that controllability is the overriding concern," counsels Dave Wilkerson, who discusses numerous matters of technique in "Training Topics" in the May 2001 AOPA Flight Training.

Compromise is what's needed. You must lift the nosewheel out of soft turf to reduce drag and accelerate. But the need still exists to delay liftoff until airspeed assures controllability, making the method a hybrid. Build safety into your plan by identifying the point at which you will abort the takeoff if not satisfied with your training aircraft's performance. Remember field length. "If it's a soft, short field and you realize on takeoff that you aren't going to make it, you have to abort much earlier because the braking won't be there to stop you," reminds Budd Davisson in the October 2002 AOPA Flight Training feature "Field Work." Read his discussion of the objectives of short- and soft-field operations.

Your first visit to that soft runway on the windy side of town doesn't have to be the first time you use techniques needed there. Rehearse the methods at your home airport. In the June 2001 AOPA Flight Training column "Continuing Ed," Mark Twombly shows how and notes that many opportunities exist "to elevate normal flights into practice and training flights." Some of his examples: "Establish an imaginary displaced threshold that you must land beyond. Declare your flaps inoperative and make a no-flaps landing. Purposely make a high approach so you'll have to cross-control and slip down to the proper glidepath."

As a student you learn the individual piloting techniques one at a time. Applying them in combination is how you'll graduate from learning concepts to making them work in real flight situations.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Products
The makers of WingX Pocket PC software have attempted to cram as many useful functions into one program as can be imagined. For starters, there are standard E6-B functions, a Federal Aviation Regulations database, a route-planning function, and a database of more than 20,000 airports. You can sort aircraft makes and models that you fly into columns that you configure-for example, you can view them by aircraft year or useful load. Graphic weight and balance information can be displayed, and there's a function that records and tracks expiration dates for medicals, recurrent training, flight reviews, and so on. The software runs on Pocket PC OS 2002 or newer or Mobile 2003 or newer and must be installed via a personal computer. It sells for $79 and may be ordered online from King Schools.

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.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Final Exam
Question: I was once told that when I land on a runway that has centerline lights, they are located on the north side of the painted centerline. Is that true?

Answer: No. Advisory Circular 150-5340-4C states that the lights are located along the runway centerline at 50-foot intervals and offset a maximum of 2 feet to either the left or the right side of the runway marking. The lights should be to the opposite side of the centerline marking from the major taxiway turnoffs. Thus the side on which the lights are located has nothing to do with a cardinal direction but is determined in relation to the major taxiway turnoffs. Download the advisory circular from AOPA Online.

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