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September 5, 2014, AOPA ePilot: Flight Training EditionSeptember 5, 2014, AOPA ePilot: Flight Training Edition

ePilot Flight Training Edition

September 5, 2014 - VOL 14, ISSUE 36

Training Tips

Deciding to land

Today you found out why your instructor is always saying that a go-around should be "instinctive" when something goes wrong during a landing.

A sudden wind gust raised your trainer's wing, disrupting your alignment with the runway just before touchdown. But you didn't hesitate. You came in strongly with power, holding forward pressure on the yoke to prevent the nose from pitching up. Then you rough-trimmed the aircraft to ease the yoke pressure, and climbed away, aggressively but smoothly working the rudder and ailerons to keep the aircraft climbing on the runway heading, clear of obstacles.

Nice job! Somewhere in the back of your consciousness you felt the airplane touch down briefly during the transition from glide to climb. But you also knew not to worry about it; if a go-around is called for close enough to the ground, the wheels may contact the runway before you can establish the climb. (Some student pilots worry that this represents an error; in this scenario it doesn't.)

So now what? With all the emphasis on flying the go-around properly, planning the next stage sometimes gets overlooked. Flight instructors, when teaching takeoffs and landings, are fond of saying that landing is only one option available to you. If you do exercise the other—the go-around—what are the options the next time around?

Perhaps there are other alternatives to consider. (Forcing the aircraft down is never one of them.) If the crosswind is getting stronger, it may be time to consider switching to a more suitable runway; don't surrender this option, if available, out of deference to other traffic or to the tower's game plan. Safety first! Just be sure to coordinate your intentions, or make the necessary request to ATC.

Also, no rule says that the more suitable runway must be at the same airport. Perhaps the satellite airfield where you practice on solo flights is a safer refuge—a good reason to carry maximum fuel.

If the go-around resulted from a lapse of technique, a distraction, or a now-resolved traffic conflict, remain in the pattern and refocus.

But if there is suddenly too much traffic, or a large wake-making aircraft is flying the pattern—its pilot needs practice too!—consider exiting the local area until things calm down. Then come back in for a relaxed, confident approach, remembering that now as before, landing remains an option.

Flight Training News


Flying Tigers rebirth

"I never went to an FBO I thought was fun," said Michael Thayer. Determined to change that, he opened Flying Tigers Aviation at Chino Airport in Chino, California, in June 2013. With Hollywood props and a faux guard tower, the FBO has a vintage appearance. Read more...  



Second chance for record setter

A double heart valve replacement kept Rachel Carter—who at 9 years old had set the unofficial record for youngest pilot of a transcontinental flight—from earning her pilot certificate after her medical certificate was denied. Many years later, she received her medical and is able to resume her quest for a private pilot certificate. Read more...  


Login required

Do you give and take pireps?

When you're on a cross-country flight, pilot reports (pireps) can be very helpful. Do you know how to interpret one and when to give them? Test yourself with this Air Safety Institute quiz. Take the quiz...


Apps of the week

Five apps aid pilots in the cockpit

Check out these five apps that help pilots handle everything from VOR tracking to checking weather. Read more...  


Embry-Riddle to offer aviation professional programs

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's Daytona Beach campus will begin offering a series of aviation-focused short courses and workshops. The courses target industry professionals involved in the operation, management, and supervision of aviation organizations.


Florida high school starts aerospace technology program

High school students in the school district of Hernando County, Florida, now have access to an aerospace technology program at Nature Coast Technical High School. The program is a partnership between the district and Corporate Jet Solutions. The first year of the program is limited to 25 current freshmen or sophomores who expressed an interest in participating and were selected through a lottery.


Flash-based, login required

Toddler overboard!

The pilot was startled by a noise he thought was caused by a window blowing out or a door being opened. What followed was an emergency not covered in the pilot's operating handbook that forced him to react swiftly. Watch this Real Pilot Story...



Flying, airport management, career scholarships offered

Aspiring and current pilots can apply for scholarships that offer funding for flight training, airport management education, and advanced certification. Read more...  

Training Resources

Navigating today's special-use airspace

Review the key points of navigating special-use airspace and learn how military lights-out training could affect you in this Air Safety Institute online course. Take the course...

Did you know that student pilots who join AOPA are three times more likely to complete their flight training? Membership includes unlimited access to aviation information by phone (800/USA-AOPA, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time) or from Flight Training Online or AOPA Online. If you're not already a member, join today and get the pilot's edge.


AOPA Live This Week

Aircraft from a bygone era, hangar full of goodies

Blakesburg, Iowa, becomes the center of the universe for people who love old airplanes. A co-author of the General Aviation Pilot Protection Act speaks about efforts to reform medical certification. And Planes of Fame Air Museum has a hangar full of goodies in Southern California. AOPA Live This Week®, Sept. 4...  

Career Pilot

Business aviation rebounds in Q2

Following a tepid performance in the first quarter of 2014, business aviation made a strong comeback in the second quarter, according to Jet Support Services Inc. The company, which provides maintenance support and financial services to business aviation, tracks the number of hours that business aircraft have flown by region, industry, and aircraft type. According to Jet Support Services Inc.'s Business Aviation Index, in the second quarter of 2014, global business aviation activity grew by 8 percent quarter over quarter, and by 3 percent year over year. "After a tough first quarter, economic activity in the United States has picked up considerably, translating into a corresponding uptick in business aviation," said Jet Support Services Inc. President and CEO Neil Book.


Chinese aviation company plans major fleet expansion

Beidahuang General Aviation Co., which offers forestry and agriculture services, has announced that it will purchase more than 40 airplanes and helicopters by 2020, reports Reuters. The company runs a flight school and recently signed a deal to offer its services to Tsinghua University.

For more aviation career news, see the Flight Training website.

Plane Spotter

Doubled-down design

There's just something about a Piper PA-30 that draws the eye, even on a ramp crowded with newer, faster, and more modern aircraft. Having spied a Twin Comanche, a plane spotter studies the two-engined development of Piper's PA-24 Comanche single to discover whether it is an early four-seater, or a six-place B or C model, confirmed by an extra side window. It's frequently noted that 160-horsepower Lycoming powerplants—"Skyhawk engines," if you will—were standard. Optional wingtip fuel tanks added range (and plane-spotting variety) to this 1960s-era general aviation classic.

Training Products

E-book on buying an airplane released

The fourth edition of Buying and Owning Your Own Airplane has been released as an e-book. This comprehensive guide covers all the information and special considerations for buying your own airplane, including selecting partners and home fields, negotiating sales contracts, and maintaining and upgrading your treasured bird. The cost is $14.95.


Gleim offers book on aviation weather

Gleim's Aviation Weather and Weather Services book provides an up-to-date compilation of the FAA's weather publications in one easy-to-understand reference. The book explains the FAA's Aviation Weather (Advisory Circular 00-6A) and Aviation Weather Services (AC 00-45G), along with other advisory circulars. The cost is $24.55.

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.

Member Benefits

Members only

Conquer your smoking addiction

Dr. Jonathan Sackier recently received a plea from a pilot: "Jonathan, can you please help me? I have been smoking for years and know I need to stop but cannot. I am 61, have some problems with my blood pressure and have had blocked coronary arteries that needed stents. What can I do?" Check out Sackier's advice...  


Member benefits

Make your home disaster proof

The next time you remodel or retrofit your home, look for ways to build in storm precautions. Read more...  


Surprises all around

Jean Moule gets a chance to go on a floatplane flight in Alaska and is overwhelmed by the natural beauty she sees from the air. Read more...  


Flying clubs: A low-cost way to 'own' an airplane, and much more

AOPA Alaska Regional Manager Tom George blogs about how flying clubs allowed him to use his newly minted private pilot certificate year round early in his flying career. Read more...  

Instrument Tip


Missing for real

Spatial disorientation? Isn't that only a hazard for VFR pilots? Read more...  

Final Exam


Why do student pilots practice ground reference maneuvers?


Ground reference maneuvers are practiced because they simulate what a pilot will experience when entering the traffic pattern at an airport. The maneuvers also help pilots improve their fundamental flying skills. You can read more about the individual maneuvers, as well as the effects of wind on a flight path, in the Airplane Flying Handbook, Chapter 6.

Got a question for our technical services staff? Contact AOPA.

Career Opportunities

Aviation job board

Job of the week: Major accounts manager, aviation, at Bose

If you are an experienced aviation sales or marketing professional, Bose is looking for you! The aviation headset manufacturer is seeking candidates for major accounts manager, aviation in the Framingham, Massachusetts, office. The successful candidate will work with existing and prospective OEM clients to maintain and build relationships that expand the Bose market. View the full job description.


AOPA career opportunities

Join the AOPA team

Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? We're looking for an executive assistant for accounting/finance and legal, legal services plan program manager, financial analyst, major gift officer, AOPA Live producer/videographer I, and account manager II. To learn more about other AOPA career opportunities, visit AOPA Online.

Education and Seminars

Flight Instructor Refresher Courses

Sept 13-14 - Sacramento, California; and Tempe, Arizona

Sept 20-21 - Colorado Springs, Colorado; Baltimore, Maryland; and Bellevue, Washington

Sept 27-28 - Richmond, Virginia

Oct 11-12 - Santa Clara, California; Corpus Christi, Texas; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Nashville, Tennessee

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the Air Safety Institute's new Online eFIRC.

Air Safety Institute Safety Seminars

Sept 8 - Wichita, Kansas; Florham Park, New Jersey; and Detroit, Michigan

Sept 9 - Independence, Ohio; Hartford, Connecticut; and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Sept 10 - Columbus, Ohio; Fayetteville, Arkansas; and Waltham, Massachusetts

Sept 11 - Indianapolis, Indiana; and Manchester, New Hampshire

Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Rusty Pilot Seminars

Sept 6 - Fredericksburg, Virginia; and Santa Fe, New Mexico

Sept 9 - Knightdale, North Carolina

Sept 13 - Palo Alto, California; and Omaha, Nebraska

Sept 19 - Chino, California

For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.

Aviation Calendar

Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See AOPA's enhanced calendar of events. Now you can filter events by date range, airport ID, state, or region. Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.

To include an event or to search all events in the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA Airports.

AOPA Featured Events

Sep 20 — Chino, California. Chino Airport (KCNO). AOPA Fly-In.


Oct 4 — Frederick, Maryland. Frederick Municipal Airport (KFDK). AOPA Homecoming.


Nov 8 — Brunswick, Georgia. Malcom McKinnon Airport (KSSI). AOPA Fly-In.

Picture Perfect

AOPA's online photo gallery allows you to upload your own aviation photography as well as view, rate, and comment on others' photos. Take a look, and submit your own photos!

AOPA ePilot

ePilot Flight Training Editor:

Benét Wilson

Production Assistant:

Melissa Whitehouse


Sarah Deener
Alyssa Miller
Jim Moore
Jill W. Tallman
Warren Morningstar
Alton K. Marsh
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Ian J. Twombly
Dan Namowitz

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