Monday, December 31, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #8

Good lesson today. I felt much more relaxed....I hope I can maintain it for the remaining of my training. We introduced more emergencies - electrical and engine fires. We worked more on in flight engine outs and those went better for me this time around. Casey pulled the power on a downwind approach to rwy 14 so I had to turn an early base and final and forward slip to the landing since I had too much altitude. I really enjoyed the slips today. We had a nice 11/16 gust knot wind from 220° which made for descent sideslip practice for crosswind landings. Overall, landings were better although I still need to let the nosewheel come down slower in landing to trim off airspeed after touchdown and to lighten the force of the nosewheel falling. I also was able to do my first no flap landing and it was at that time that Casey decided to introduce passenger distractions. Check out the video for details. :-)

-Greg

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Friday, December 28, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #7

Emergency practice day and towered airport operations.

Today was the introduction to dealing with emergency situations due to engine failure on takeoff, cruise, and landing. Casey pulled the power back to simulate a failure. It always amazes me how you can have a cool head on the ground and think that you will have no problem picking a field, only to freeze at 1800 feet like a deer in the headlights. Practice makes perfect is what I tell myself. I will say that when the lesson was over I was more relaxed than I have ever been...which makes me feel like I am making progress. A good motivator for me is looking forward to the day when things become more second nature.

We flew over to Melbourne International (KMLB) and practiced some landings and I was able to get some experience with ATC. Things got fairly hectic...very fast. Upon approach I was getting ready to announce my position and intent when a foreign helicopter student pilot chimed in and announced his position and intent for touch and go's. Apparently ATC believed him to be on the wrong frequency and instructed him to changed over to Space Coast tower in Titusville. He came back that he was indeed wanting to land at Melbourne, but there was a bit of hesitation in getting his request across and the language barrier did not help matters. When you watch the video you will understand when I say he did not make any new friends with ATC that day. You will hear a second pilot of similar country origin who it seems that they mistake for the first person, and he is promptly given the same treatment. It is extremely busy for ATC and I definitely can understand the importance of pilots being accurate and to the point....for safety purposes. A good lesson learned today.

-Greg

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #6

For this lesson we worked on more landings and I was introduced to ground reference maneuvers, in particular, the rectangular course and s-turns. Once again, I was getting lost from above and had trouble identifying the rectangular course that Casey was pointing out, which made things difficult. S-Turns went well, though. On left downwind to runway 14 from the practice area, I made an early turn to base for some unknown reason which put me about 300 feet higher on base than I should have been and very close to final, so when I made my turn to final I was still high so Casey had me do a forward slip, which proved to be rather horrible..... Needless to say I had to abort that landing and do a go around. On the landing that followed I hit pretty hard and the camera move down toward the baggage area so that ruined the rest of the video. Things happen that way sometimes.

-Greg

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Saturday, December 22, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #5

Happy Holidays! We worked some more with the power off stalls and also introduced steep turns, forward slips, and side slips. The slips were challenging for me...to say the least. Thanks again for Casey's patience. I am extremely fortunate to have picked a good instructor the first time. I can only wish the same experience for all of you.

-Greg

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Slow Downloads

It seems that some of us are experiencing slow downloads on the podcasts. I believe I have isolated the problem to my ISP at home (Bright House). Unfortunately, my tiny podcast is nothing to them understandably and they see so issues...naturally. I am able to download my podcasts faster on my laptop cellular broadband card than I can through Bright House and other family members throughout the state of Florida download it at 400 to 500 KB/s. I do apologize for this and I hope that they can resolve the issue they think they do not have....soon. :-)

-Greg

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #4

Ok...this one was interesting. We worked on arrival and departure stalls as well as touch and goes. The weather was perfect which helped out with the landings. Those were by far my favorite. Stalls...not so much, but with a little practice they will get better. I left out the improved stall recovery video, but I did get better as we kept doing them. Flying in the evening was great. We got to witness a nice sunset, so that added some fun to the flight.

-Greg

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #3

I was able to get some video today. I forgot the wide angle lens so things are cramped and a lot of the video was dark so I had to do the best I could during post to brighten things up which in turn caused some overexposure. We are still experimenting here. I am trying to focus on absorbing as much as I can and at the same time document the experience, so you can appreciate the challenges that I face trying to capture the moment. I am having so much fun flying. There really are no words to describe it. It is great to break up the routine and I have been very routine for a long time. Don't get me wrong; I love my wife and son with everything that I have, so I cannot include them when I say "routine". A 3 year old is hardly "routine". This feeds a different part of me. Everyone needs an outlet and I highly suggest flying. :-)

-Greg

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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Student Pilot Journal Podcast #2

First Flying Lesson!


No video yet, but I was able to record some audio from the flight. I had to edit a lot of it and some of the audio may sound rushed. I cut out the dead space where we did not talk so I could provide a decent sample with minimal dead air. Here is a brief summary of what we covered:

  1. Pre-flight
  2. Checklists
  3. Traffic Pattern Operations
  4. Radio Communications
  5. Takeoff and Climb procedures
  6. Straight and level flight
  7. Shallow turns
  8. Climbs and descents
  9. Flight at varying airspeeds
  10. Normal approach and landing

Recording the audio is a huge help. I have been listening to it all day and making notes when I hear something that I need to remember or work on. My next lesson is this Saturday and I will be getting some video this time with my new Sticky Pod Dash. Yippee!

-Greg

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