Saturday, June 5, 2010

Good to fly again!

Finally I had a scheduled flight and the weather allowed me to fly it.

After a period with lack of flights, last Thursday I went to the sky again! For this flight the mission was the final adaptation to advanced single engine aircraft. And the aircraft was... the Mooney M20J! After a long 15 minutes period waiting on the apron for a free slot, we finally started up the engine, first thing that marks the difference between the Mooney and other aircraft that I've already flew is the sound, feels powerful. Normal ground procedures and taxi to the holding of runway 35 at Cascais Aerodrome , LPCS. During ground maneuver and take off the controls seem to be heavy and the rotate seem to be slow, but in the sky... boy! What amazing aircraft.

Climb performance is amazing, but when we leveled at 3000 feet the airspeed indicator started to show a fast increasing of speed, remembering me that this was no longer a slow Cessna or Socata Tampico. Later I've found out this issue of higher speeds can bring to normal instrument procedures operations. At the beginning the flight instructor briefed me about differences of this aircraft in flight and showed me some reactions of the plane, after this I practiced some emergencies and normal procedures, such as, normal landing configuration, gear up fail, gliding and engine restart procedures, among others. Later on we continued with instrument procedures training as holdings and DME arcs, last ones much harder to maintain with this increase of speed with a distance of 8 nautical miles from the station.

In the air the aircraft seemed to be very smooth and precise in the controls, those don't require much deflection to take effect, with the increase of power the propeller effects are now more visible and during climb forces you to counter balance with the right foot much more.

In my opinion I've enjoyed very much of the aircraft but I'm sure that it's a more difficult aircraft that requires more of me to fly it. Can't barely wait for the next one!

from: Luis Gonçalves - APEA -

Matt Hall touches the water during qualifying @ Windsor

The Australian Red Bull Air Race pilot Matt Hall, had a scary qualifying day as during his flight, his plane touched the water of the Detroit River.

Images here. Official Red Bull Air Race internet website.

Windsor Red Bull Air Race Live! - Pete McLeod

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