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AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content -- Vol. 8, Issue 4AOPA Online Members Only -- AOPA ePilot Custom Content -- Vol. 8, Issue 4

The following stories from the January 27, 2006, edition of AOPA ePilot were provided to AOPA members who expressed an interest in the particular subject areas. Any AOPA member can receive information tailored to their areas of interest by updating their preferences online.

My ePilot - Own/May Own Interest
Having trouble seeing out of your aircraft's windows? Proper care can go a long way toward improving the longevity of your windows. Keeping your aircraft in a hangar, using a cleaner approved for acrylic windows, and wiping with a soft, cotton cloth can help, writes Marc E. Cook in "Per-plex'd" in the May 1999 issue of AOPA Pilot. If one of your windows has a scratch that needs to be fixed, check out some helpful tips in "Putting on the Fix," a companion article available on the same Web page.

My ePilot - Light Sport Aircraft Interest
Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association (LAMA) founder Larry Burke announced this week that with the support of the LAMA Board of Directors, he has appointed Dan Johnson as chairman of the LAMA Board and Tom Gunnarson as LAMA president. Johnson, who operates the LAMA affiliate Light-Sport Aircraft Marketing Group, will provide guidance to the association's efforts. Gunnarson, who assists companies importing light sport aircraft into the United States, will handle LAMA's everyday activities. Gunnarson also chaired the FAA Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee that reviewed ultralight and light aircraft regulations.

My ePilot - Experimental Interest
Cozy Mark IV and Long EZ metal parts are still available to aircraft builders. That's because Aircraft Spruce has purchased parts, tooling, and drawings from the Ken Brock Manufacturing Company, which previously had supplied the parts but ceased production December 31. Builders can visit the Aircraft Spruce Web site to find parts that are in stock and ready to ship. The company is working on producing the parts, and those that are not in stock should be available in March.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Tips
You soloed-congratulations! The happy day arrived with the right combination of your sharp flying, favorable weather, and traffic conditions at the airport. After more solo sessions supervised by your instructor, it may be possible for you to head to the airport and take out the trainer on your own. To make that a safe and satisfying experience, your instructor should define in your logbook the conditions under which your approval to fly solo is in force. Doing so is in keeping with the solo requirements for student pilot provisions of the Federal Aviation Regulations. One of the limitations in the regulation prohibits solo flight "in a manner contrary to any limitations placed in the pilot's logbook by an authorized instructor."

Weather conditions-wind, ceilings, and visibility-are common limitations. But there could be others. Your instructor might require you to activate a VFR flight plan on every solo, or that you solo in a particular trainer in your school's fleet. You could be limited to paved runways if your airport has paved and sod or grass runways. Crosswind conditions may create a situation where the total wind is within your limits but the crosswind component isn't: A 10-knot breeze down the runway is far less of a concern than a 10-kt crosswind. On that subject, there's no such thing as too much crosswind practice, either before you solo or at any time during your flying career. Review techniques, and follow a link to a calculator for determining the crosswind component on your runway, in the March 7, 2003, Training Tips.

Remember that in a strong wind, taxiing with the correct control deflections will keep you upright; ignoring proper technique causes trouble. "Aircraft are most vulnerable when taxiing downwind, but no matter which direction the aircraft is taxiing with respect to the wind, flight controls must be positioned to reduce the wind effects," AOPA Air Safety Foundation Executive Director Bruce Landsberg wrote in his July 1999 AOPA Flight Training column "Learn Your Limitations."

Solo flying is a joy and a milestone, and it is a serious responsibility. Be sure to adhere to any solo limitations scrupulously.

My ePilot - Student Interest, Training Products
Do you have the time? Sporty's Deluxe Flight Timer offers a range of features designed for use by VFR and instrument-rated pilots alike. These include an easy-to-read screen with large numbers, wide buttons that are easy to press, and a backlit function for night flying. Two independent timers count up or down, and each has an alarm with flashing red light-emitting diodes to announce the timer's expiration so that you don't have to rely on a sound alarm in a noisy cockpit. The timer includes a holder with a swivel clip for attaching it to a kneeboard. It runs on two AAA batteries, which are not included, and sells for $24.95. Order online or call 800/SPORTYS.

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: On an aeronautical chart, what does the numerical designation of a military training route (MTR) represent?

Answer: FAA Order 7610.4K on special military operations details how the numerical designation of an MTR is created. The MTR will have a prefix of "IR" or "VR." Operations on an "IR" route will be IFR, while operations on a "VR" route will be completed VFR, though visibility must be at least 5 miles and the ceiling must be at least 3,000 feet for the flight. The route number that follows the prefix corresponds with the region in which the route's entry point is located. There is a chart you can use to identify the region. There will be three numbers if at least one segment of the route is above 1,500 feet agl and four numbers if all segments on the route are below 1,500 feet agl. A letter suffix may follow the numbers if alternate route segments have been established. For additional information on MTRs you can read Chapter 3 of the Aeronautical Information Manual and AOPA Online.

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