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Jimston2008
08-22-2009, 07:06 PM
I have just one thing i must give credit for, and that is that flying takes a tremendous amount of skill, concentration, and of course balls of steel.

I've been up in the air twice in my life, and both times left me awe stuck due to many reasons in particular.

The first aircraft is a small sport plane called a Piper Archer i believe. This craft has been flying since the 70's, while being maintained all this time, up until now.

It has a hole in the tail section which had been been chewed out by mice of some sort. The mechanics joked that every time a pilot had taken it up, they needed to shake it loose of birds and other small critters. They nick named it the animal kingdom, not to mention it was leaking water as well, from where, i don't know! They put some duct tape on the tail section hole after flushing the critters out, and that was it.

The cockpit reached 120 degrees F, due to a broken AC unit not working, which added to my air sickness ha ha. All in all, my first time up was a bad experience due to the circumstances.

Second Flight 2 months later...

This time it's a very small sports plane of new design. Doesn't weigh more then 1200 pounds, 120hp motor, and for a little plane, it rockets to take off speed in no time. What i wasn't expecting though, was for the low cross winds to blow the arse end of the aircraft so out of control that i was certain we would flip over and crash on take off.

The moment we lifted off, the tail of the aircraft slid 60 degrees at least, while it also banked about 30 degrees and was now drifting violently all over the place. My friend who is the pilot had really amazed me with his precise stick and Rudder action that kept the aircraft from falling out of the sky.

Anyways, we did 3 circuits which are take offs and landings, where you actually lift off again rather then stopping. Each time we touched down, the aircraft violently slammed it's landing gear aground with one wheel most of the time. I was certain the gear was gonna snap upon landing, and to be honest my back hurts just hours later.

Every time we landed, the aircraft would set down nearly sideways, with loud bangs and screeches from the gear that nearly made me shat my self. How the hell do these pilots do it?

According to him, these winds were nothing compared to previous winds he had faced in the past, but to me, this was hardcore.

So i put my trust in a pilot with 150 hours flight time, while having a storm moving in, and 1/2 mile of visibility. I made it home and am alive with a fresh pair of shorts.

The Skill and dedication of pilots is simply amazing. I can't possibly explain as to how impressed i am after today. You guys have really earned my respect.

But a word of advice http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif If you ever want us non pilots to take up flying some day, then try not to scare the poop out of us.

Thanks.

Jimston2008
08-22-2009, 07:06 PM
I have just one thing i must give credit for, and that is that flying takes a tremendous amount of skill, concentration, and of course balls of steel.

I've been up in the air twice in my life, and both times left me awe stuck due to many reasons in particular.

The first aircraft is a small sport plane called a Piper Archer i believe. This craft has been flying since the 70's, while being maintained all this time, up until now.

It has a hole in the tail section which had been been chewed out by mice of some sort. The mechanics joked that every time a pilot had taken it up, they needed to shake it loose of birds and other small critters. They nick named it the animal kingdom, not to mention it was leaking water as well, from where, i don't know! They put some duct tape on the tail section hole after flushing the critters out, and that was it.

The cockpit reached 120 degrees F, due to a broken AC unit not working, which added to my air sickness ha ha. All in all, my first time up was a bad experience due to the circumstances.

Second Flight 2 months later...

This time it's a very small sports plane of new design. Doesn't weigh more then 1200 pounds, 120hp motor, and for a little plane, it rockets to take off speed in no time. What i wasn't expecting though, was for the low cross winds to blow the arse end of the aircraft so out of control that i was certain we would flip over and crash on take off.

The moment we lifted off, the tail of the aircraft slid 60 degrees at least, while it also banked about 30 degrees and was now drifting violently all over the place. My friend who is the pilot had really amazed me with his precise stick and Rudder action that kept the aircraft from falling out of the sky.

Anyways, we did 3 circuits which are take offs and landings, where you actually lift off again rather then stopping. Each time we touched down, the aircraft violently slammed it's landing gear aground with one wheel most of the time. I was certain the gear was gonna snap upon landing, and to be honest my back hurts just hours later.

Every time we landed, the aircraft would set down nearly sideways, with loud bangs and screeches from the gear that nearly made me shat my self. How the hell do these pilots do it?

According to him, these winds were nothing compared to previous winds he had faced in the past, but to me, this was hardcore.

So i put my trust in a pilot with 150 hours flight time, while having a storm moving in, and 1/2 mile of visibility. I made it home and am alive with a fresh pair of shorts.

The Skill and dedication of pilots is simply amazing. I can't possibly explain as to how impressed i am after today. You guys have really earned my respect.

But a word of advice http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif If you ever want us non pilots to take up flying some day, then try not to scare the poop out of us.

Thanks.

GH_Klingstroem
08-22-2009, 07:55 PM
First of all im really glad you enjoyed your flying experience, at least the second one http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

However, i really doubt that the Piper archer you flew was too hot due too a failing AC unit since as far as I know an AC unit was never installed in Piper archer, at least not unless the owner specifically requested it which i highly doubt would be the case with such an aircraft.

Seconf of all, tell you friend to kick the rudder just before touch down to straighten the aircraft for landing. Basically, the first wheel to touch the ground should be the wheel in the direction the wind comes from. IE wind from the left, left wheel touches the ground first. This will make the landings alot more comfortable and will make the airframe last longer!
Im sure ur friend knows this however...

Take it from a guy with a few thousand hours... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Waldo.Pepper
08-22-2009, 08:12 PM
When I went for a glider flight some years ago the tow plane was an ancient Piper of some sort. The tow plane was leaking fuel! Amazingly enough looks just like in Il-2 when you puncture a tank.

The_Stealth_Owl
08-22-2009, 08:16 PM
Mmmmm, The P-47 would be a good tow plane becuase it has some power. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/winky.gif


Next summer I might get to ride in a stunt plane! http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Choctaw111
08-22-2009, 09:30 PM
My first time flying was when I was three years old. My father, a licensed pilot, took me up, just he and I.
I still remember telling him to "stop doing those circles". http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
I am amazed that I can remember something that far back, but it had such an impact on me that I would never forget it.
Throughout the years we would go up often and there is nothing like getting up there and feeling more free and alive than anything that can be done on the ground.

Lemky
08-22-2009, 10:44 PM
Yup http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

Maj.Kaos
08-24-2009, 10:20 AM
I was a young, amateur bush pilot in Idaho and Washington back in the days, and been accustomed to drama, i.e. scary airstrips, poor weather, in-flight failures over remote, rugged terrain, near collisions in air and ground, getting lost and disoriented, crappy aircraft, etc. One day I was invited for a joy ride in an old, modified Piper Cub flown by an 85 year old neighbor who was an army flight instructor during WW2, and a crop duster pilot before and after that interruption. I was not intimidated by the cataracts in his eyes, and I knew he didn't have a medical certificate, but I had seen him flying about before and knew he was still capable. Besides, it is a dual control aircraft.

Weather was windy with strong gusts, but visibility good. The over-bored engine pulled us off the ground in seconds and we headed off over eastern Washington flat lands, noting the crops harvested, the rivers dropping to their autumn levels, etc. Presently he turned toward a butte and told me he wanted to land for a pee break, remarking that he had a strip there that he hadn't been to in a while. As we approached, I saw what he called a 'strip'... not much more than a lenght of ground less rough than that near it. It was also on the side of the butte, at about a 30 degree angle. We would land uphill, of course. The Cub clawed its way into the wind, the crab angle increasing the nearer we got to the ground, until we were swinging between 35 to 45 degree angle to path of flight during the gusts. I wondered if he was seriously going to try to land it, 30 some degrees up and 40 some degrees off path. My mind quickly composed a newspaper headline "Fool critically hurt while flying with blind man." and just before the wheels (balloon tires) were about to touch the dirt, he eased back on the stick and turned to smile at me. "You weren't scared?" he asked me. "I was too astounded to be scared.", I grinned in return.

Back to the home airfield (another dirt strip tucked away in a small field) ahead of a fast moving cold front, the same gusts were tossing us around on approach. Drama was high again as instead of angles to figure out, it was power lines at the end of the strip. Go over?, go under?, go through?, the Cub seemed indecisive as the wind blew us about. The cataracts made the last minute adjustment, pushing the stick down (was that me, or was it the pilot?). I watched the power lines cross from our 10 o'clock not-so-high to our 4 o'clock a-little-bit-higher. I realized the old guy had less to fear of death than I did, thus the bravado, or was it non-chalant? I chose the latter. "I've crashed a few." he said, "Doesn't hurt as much as you would think, except in your wallet." I thanked him profusely for the ride, he offered a repeat anytime, but we never went up together again, but not for lack of enthusiasm. Just didn't happen.

Some weeks later, his son, a crop duster pilot, nearly turned me into confetti when I came to a full stop landing on another strip while practicing, well, short field landings. No traffic calls were made, so I spun around on the strip to run up to the end to start a short field take-off. I noticed the tanker truck sitting on the edge of the field, but hadn't figured on the Grumman AgCat barreling in over the hill at dirt clod level and in a hurry to re-load. As I spun around I came face to propellor with the AgCat. My survival instincts kicked in...I froze. If the prey doesn't move, the carnivore won't attack kind of thinking, I guess. What could I do? Despite his landing flare, the pilot noticed I was lolly gagging on the field, and instinct persuaded him to pull up. The passage from certain death to an increased life span was very loud as the AgCat passed just feet overhead. The pilot was not happy on the radio (he finally decided to use it now rather than on approach), but cooled off when he realized his error.

Boosher
08-24-2009, 03:24 PM
Cool story. Most Pipers, as far as I'm aware, have intake vents to cool the cockpit or heat it when necessary. I remember when I took up the Piper Cherokee 140 for flights and it was unbearably hot on the ground, but once I got it up to speed even at ground level it cooled off dramatically because of the air blowing in.

Jimston2008
08-24-2009, 08:02 PM
The first may not have been an Archer, but it was a Piper of some sort from the 70's. The water i had later found out was rain that leaked through a door seal the following day.

It is the second flight that amazed me though, as the skill needed to land a small light aircraft in what seemed like insanely strong winds was amazing.

ElAurens
08-24-2009, 08:58 PM
Statistically, pilots of light civilian aircraft are as likely to be killed while flying as motorcyclists are riding.

A sad and little known fact. Especially as I am a rider, and obviously like aircraft.

Only commercial jet airliners have safety stats that are better than ground transport.

Just the way it is.

Maj.Kaos
08-25-2009, 03:52 AM
Jimston had a taste of it. Flying is dangerous, considering General Aviation (light planes, non-commercial, non-military) versus road accidents (includes any fatalities by car, whether victims are inside or outside of the car, ie, bicycles, peds, motorbikes).

From a report here http://www.crashstuff.com/driv...accident-statistics/ (http://www.crashstuff.com/driving-or-flying-plane-vs-car-accident-statistics/)

"Choosing “mile to mile” as the more appropriate comparison for differing modes of transportation (and overlooking that small planes often takeoff and land at the same airport, without ever really “going anywhere”), let’s review the fatality rates:

driving: 1.32 fatal accidents and 1.47 fatalities per 100 million miles

airlines: .05 fatal accidents and 1.57 fatalities per 100 million miles

GA: 7.46 fatal accidents and 13.1 fatalities per 100 million miles

So mile per mile, GA flying has about 5 times as many fatal accidents, and 9 times as many fatalities, as compared to travel by motor vehicle. The airlines have about the same fatality rate as driving, but a much lower fatal accident rate (by virtue of a large number of fatalities per accident)."

Statistically, traffic deaths are around the 10th leading cause of death, behind cancer, diabeties, living in Somalia, etc. About half of the 1.2 million traffic deaths around the world each year are peds or bikes.

For me, general aviation is more relaxing than driving with the maniacs on the road, and being the victim of somebody else's incompetence, impatience, or stupidity. With small planes, it's usually the pilots fault for the accident, and rarely ever is some other aircraft involved. World-renowned pilot Steve Fosset's death is attributed to "The pilot’s inadvertent encounter with downdrafts that exceeded the climb capability of the airplane. Contributing to the accident were the downdrafts, high density altitude, and mountainous terrain."