Learning to Fly

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mattmoxon
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Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Thu May 28, 2015 11:43 am

No I am not talking about doing magic mushrooms and jumping off a tower block flapping my arms, but doing my private pilot’s licence (PPL). I am currently eight hours into the skills training and have spent countless hours on the theory side (there is a lot to learn).

The aircraft I am training on is a Cessna 150H (Reims built registered in 1969), a small two seat aircraft with a 100hp four cylinder engine.

It has been great fun and really interesting so far and I am keeping a blog on PistonHeads but now the new MFUK site is up and running I am happy to post a sister blog on here if people are interested :)

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby waylander » Thu May 28, 2015 12:50 pm


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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby cati » Thu May 28, 2015 4:07 pm

Matt

I would be - very cool thing to do and you are learning in a classic.

I started a PPL many years ago and flew the 150 and 172 depending on what was available.

Stopped mine when the money ran out and regretted it ever since

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby bigkeeko » Thu May 28, 2015 5:20 pm

That is a cool thing to do.

I`ve oftern thought about flying lessons myself. I`m 40 miles from a school.

No sure how much ££ would be involved start to finish (although it`s not too important).

Good luck. :cow

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby badhand » Fri May 29, 2015 9:07 am

Go for it Moxy!

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sat May 30, 2015 10:07 pm

Yeah she is a classic and a lovely aircraft to fly, though you do get bounced around quite a bit in turbulence.

Start to finish cost varies from person to person, the more hours you need over the minimum (45) the more it will cost obviously.

I will start adding blog posts to this thread shortly (in line with the PH posts) and my farcebook witterings.

A quick search on the internet reviels this photo taken of the 150 I am learning in:
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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby waylander » Sat May 30, 2015 10:59 pm

the Ford Cortina of the skies... I bought the ex a flying lesson many years ago and truth be told it was an interesting experience (I was a passenger in the back)

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:26 pm

A bit about me
I am an early 30’s (31 at the time this post was written) software engineer in the defence industry (aviation) and since as long as I can remember I have been fascinated by flight. Why has it taken so long to get around to doing my PPL you may be wondering? It has always been one of those things that I wanted to do but never quite got to. Then Further and Higher education (I did my degree in my late 20’s as a part time course whilst working full time) got in the way. I discovered drag racing in my mid 20's as a spectator. Then a couple of years later as a racer; its hopelessly addictive and fantastic fun especially when you have a great bunch of friends around you and flying once again slipped onto the back burner.

In mid 2004 a taster evening at Pocklington Glider Club organised by a colleague re-ignited that low burning pilot flame (no pun intended – honest) and after flirting with applying for the BA Future Pilot Program I gave in to that need to fly and went for a trial lesson at the Humber Flying Club, it took me back to my late teens when I flew for the first time (I’d not even flown in an airliner at that point in my life) in an RAF Scottish Aviation Bulldog T.1.

Of all the flying clubs in the area I chose this one because I decided learning at an airport with a proper control tower would be better for my radio skills from day one and Humber Flying club use the Cessna 150 which reduces the hourly rates by £15 (adds up over a full PPL course).

Initially I planned to do this late this year early next year but I decided to just go for it, I can fit it in around my racing quite nicely so it’s not going to be an issue.

There won't be many photos on this thread as I am learning to fly not sightseeing (there will be plenty of time for that when I actually have my PPL).

Flight One, the trial flight 17th of February 2015
The trial flight was probably fairly standard amongst most flying clubs; a pre-flight brief where the primary effects of the flight controls are discussed and having a known pattern to fly around the local area. I was sat in the Captains (left) seat and my instructor Captain John Greenfield in the right hand seat of G-AWPJ the clubs Cessna 150 aircraft which is used for training. The C150 is somewhat cramped when you have a couple of fully grown adults that are both around 6ft tall but it’s not uncomfortable. A short wait after the engine run up checks for an AS365 Dauphin to depart (they taxi to the runway and then take off) we were given clearance to take off on runway 20 (two-zero).

We climbed to 2000ft whilst turning northbound and once at altitude I performed a few exercises on the controls (basic effects of ailerons, elevators and rudder) and from that point (just south of the Humber) I had control of the aircraft (John maintained control of the trim and throttle but the rest was me). We headed north towards Beverly; I was using the RAF Leconfield as my horizon point as the sun was reflecting off one of the hangars making it an easy thing to pick out. I used Beverly Minster as a waypoint and turned the aircraft in a north easterly direction and we flew out towards Hornsea.

Once we were north east of Hornsea Mere I turned the aircraft into a south easterly direction and tracked the coast down towards Spurn Point (it’s amazing how much it actually curves inwards across the mouth of the Humber). Keeping Grimsby on the port (left) side of the aircraft, the wind had shifted direction so rather than enter the pattern and fly a circuit to land on runway 20, we flew a straight in approach to runway 26 (two-six). At around 600ft John took control of the aircraft and made a nice smooth landing.

Image
Image

In-between flights

After a bit of thought and deliberation since the first flight I have decided that getting my PPL is what I want to do. So the first port of call was to get my medical sorted (no point putting in work and effort if I find I am medically unfit for some reason. So I booked in at the Sutton Manor Surgery and got the necessary paperwork. After an in depth eye exam at my Opticians (Bush in Hessle), I went to the surgery and got my medical sorted. This means that I have a clean bill of health as far as the CAA is concerned as I have my Class 2 Medical :)

Since then I have taken out a subscription to Flyer Magazine (which handily came with the 2015-2016 edition of Learn to Fly magazine) as well, though I’ll probably be pushed to find time to read it with all the books I will have to read.

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:33 pm

Flight Two, the first step to my PPL 17th of April 2015
I arrived at the flying club for my lesson at 10AM, I’d already phoned to make sure the weather was good before I set off (they advise you to do that anyway) so I knew I’d be getting airborne. Following a pre-flight briefing on what today’s lesson would entail John booked out with ATC and we headed out onto the airfield. The weather was 2500ft scattered cloud, light north easterly wind, lovely, if a little chilly. It was the first flight of the day for Cessna G-AWPJ which resulted in needing to complete a full walk around check. John performed this explaining the steps with me watching, because this of is something I will be doing by myself in the not too distant future. With the walk-around checks done the internal checks were next, there isn’t a lot to a 150 so they don’t take long.

I got to do the engine start which is fairly simple, a couple of primer shots were needed (note to self – use your palm to push the primer in as it requires a bit more force than my thumb would like) as it was a cold start. Key in the slot (yes just like a car the 150 has a key), twist all the way around she fired up on the button and settled into a nice fast idle. Once warmed up I rested my hands and feet on the controls so I could follow what John was doing as we taxied down the grass taxiway (hopefully they’ll give the grass a trim at some point) to holding point uniform (U) on runway 02 (Zero-Two). Run up and mag checks complete it was time to request clearance to take off; again I was following John through on the controls as we took off and up to 2000ft.

Today’s lesson would be building on the simple exercises that we did on my trial flight; the secondary effects of flight controls. First on the agenda was aileron and rudder induced spiral dives and how to recover from them. Also the effects of changing the trim (it’s quite sensitive on the 150 as the trim tab is the full width of the starboard elevator), throttle and flaps on the aircraft and 30 degree banked turns (I’d only done 15 degree turns on my trial lesson). One thing taught during turns as the aircraft is a high wing aircraft you bank slightly the opposite way to the turn to clear the view of the horizon to check for traffic.

With the exercises done we mooched around for a bit around practicing co-ordinated turns. The hour had passed far too quickly and we were heading back in to Humberside, a shift in the wind direction meant yet again there was no pattern and it was a straight in approach on runway 08 (zero-eight). I maintained control of the control yoke and rudder pedals whilst John adjusted the trim, throttle and flaps, at 300ft MSL (around 200ft AGL) John took over and landed the aircraft.

I got to do some taxi practice as we came in and parked up for fuel, though that will be covered in more detail on a later lesson.

Back in the flying clubs porta-cabin we debriefed and filled in my new logbook with the first couple of flights. I also purchased a copy of the aircraft checklists and APM (Air Pilots Manual) 1: Flying training. I’ll pick up a copy of APM 2: Air law as soon as they have one in stock as it’s an exam I’ll have to pass before first solo and essentially being the highway code of the sky its rather important.

The school operates Monday evening ground school classes so I’ll be going to those as well, all being well (weather) I have another flight on Friday morning before I go to Santa Pod for round two of Sportsman ET and another on the following Monday Afternoon (the benefits of a long weekend).

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:45 pm

Flight Three: 24th of April 2015
My third lesson, we were going to be operating with a limited horizon as it was it was very hazy (the days METAR put the visibility at 7000m at Humberside) but it was worse in some patches and better in others in the western training area which is situated between Humberside and Scunthorpe and North of Brigg (skydiving activities preclude going South when there are jumpers in the air). The pre-flight briefing contained three things, how to take off, climbs and descents (throttle and trim) and more information on turns.

I was handed the keys to the aircraft as we approached as I was going to be doing all of the A checks (it was the first flight of the day for Papa-Juliet) the tech logs had been reviewed in the club porta-cabin John keeps on top of the fuel so we knew there was more than sufficient in the tanks. I performed the A-checks under the watchful eye of John who would correct me/provide any advice required.

The internal checks were much the same and soon we were taxiing away from the GA parking on the grass and onto the main taxi way where John passed control of the aircraft back to me and I taxied to holding point Bravo on runway two-zero. With the run-up checks complete I taxied out to the runway and completed the final checks before taking off. It was quite a feeling to perform that manoeuvre myself, I did get a bit of weather cocking early on but we were soon airborne and climbing, and as instructed by ATC made a right turn at 500ft MSL.

On the way to the training area we covered having a slight weave left and right every 500ft to make sure there is nothing under the nose that would be obscured by the engine cowl. John then took control of the aircraft with me following through on the controls to demonstrate what we had talked about in the classroom before the flight.

The basics of descending, carb-heat to hot, reduce the power and let the nose start to come down, then trim out to maintain the cruise speed at the reduced power level, the result a nice 500 feet per minute (fpm) descent, at 100ft to the target altitude (in this case 1500ft) the carb heat goes back to cold and at 50ft to go the power comes back up to cruise speed, forward pressure on the yoke to keep the nose at the right attitude then trim until that pressure is no-longer required. Temporarily removing ones hands from the yoke should yield no climbing or descending (other than that normally associated with wind and air currents). Climbing is almost but not quite the reverse, apply full power and let the aircrafts nose start to come up, hold at the desired attitude and trim for a 500fpm ascent, every 500ft a left-right weave to make sure nobody else is under the nose. At 50ft to the target altitude (2,500ft in this case) apply forward pressure to put the nose at the attitude you want and then reduce power to cruising rpm, trim until no pressure is required.

After a few of those and 180 and 360 degree turns using the East Drain (a man made canal) as a track due to the limited horizon we used the ADF to take us back to the airport where I flew the approach down to 200ft and John took over and landed with me following through on the controls. It felt great to be more in control of the aircraft too :) More books were in stock so I now have APM 2: Air Law and Meteorology to read. Just the air law parts for now though.

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:49 pm

Flight Four: 27th of April 2015
Not long since the last lesson, as I had a long weekend booked so naturally I was going to be taking advantage of it (weather permitting next weekend will be the same). On this week’s agenda; more on climbing but with an added twist, mixing them with turns. It was time to bring in climbing turns, more information on control co-ordination as well. So we headed out to the aircraft, which as it had just come back from a lesson and had the same crew (John) it only required a transit check (no evident damage, or leaks, full and correct movement of surfaces, tyres and U/C in good condition and nothing blocked).

I started up and completed the pre-taxi checks and once clearance was acquired I taxied the aircraft from the grass parking area to the holding area for the run-up checks. With the run up checks completed (aircraft pointing into wind) it the aircraft is turned 270 degrees from the holding point as it provides a complete view of the pattern as you turn, essential in a high wing aircraft as the wings block a significant portion of the visibility of traffic that is higher than you are.

With take-off clearance acquired I smoothly opened the throttle and we began rolling, a little less weather cocking than before and with a slight back pressure the nose lifted and we were away, at 500ft we turned towards the western training area and were passed over to the local controller that provided us with a basic service. Unlike the previous lesson it was gin clear which meant navigating to and from objects on the horizon was easy enough. John demonstrated climbing and descending turns then it was my turn I got the hang of it after a few tries though the thermal activity in the area was considerable and some of the 500fpm descents ended up being level flight for a few moments whilst we passed through it. We ended up using Brough and South Ferriby as turning points as it seemed to minimise the amount of interference from thermals and downdraughts. The last part of the lesson was rudder and aileron control co-ordination (I do keep getting crossed controls, using rudder to maintain a heading and then opposite aileron to counteract any disturbances due to air currents). The previous lessons points were re-enforced, e.g. using carb heat on descents and weaving every 500ft when climbing to check for anything that might be hidden under the nose.

I flew the aircraft back to Humberside after the exercise and just like before I took it down to around 200ft MSL and then John took over and landed, with me following him through on the controls.

There is an awful lot to think about up there but it is slowly clicking into place I have noticed that during general flying (to and from the training area) he is relaxing his following through on the controls more, only really doing it during the exercises now which is nice to notice.

The Evenings ground school covered technical based items on engines and their workings, vacuum systems, static and pitot pressure systems, gyros and the flight instruments that use them. Again some things I am already familiar with and some things that were new or refreshed. There is lots to take in and learn but I think my engineering background and generally good mechanical knowledge give me an advantage.

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:54 pm

Flight Five: 1st of May 2015
This flight was the first of my slow flight training sessions, slow flight with the aircraft in a clean (flaps up) configuration. Slow flight is essentially maintaining flight on the back side of the drag curve, so the drill is: carb heat to hot, and pull the throttle back to 1500 rpm, and raise the nose to ensure that the speed bleeds off and altitude is maintained. At 50kts indicated airspeed the power is brought back up to 1900rpm (the bottom end of the normal operating range for the Cessna 150) and the carb heat returned to cold. Back pressure is used to maintain the nose up attitude as the purpose of the exercise is to feel what the aircraft is like at low speed rather than fly it at that speed because it’s about training me for landing the aircraft.

After a less than stellar attempt at taxiing to runway 08, the taxiway for that runway is grass for light aircraft (up to 2,500kg) and the differences in power required to maintain taxi speed is quite marked. The run up and pre-takeoff checks complete I took off and we were away, and after 500ft were in a climbing turn to head to the western training area. John demonstrated the slow flight manoeuvres once we were at 2000ft, then it was my turn after a couple of attempts I got it and the little 150 was flying as slow as t was comfortable, the stall warner had a go a couple of times but other than that and the rather mushy aileron response it was uneventful. I was having a tough time getting it trimmed for straight and level for some reason (I hope I don’t have ‘off days’) but we seem to be getting that ironed out. One thing that is evident (and I blame driving American cars for this) is fists of ham and feet of lead, the Mustang responds best to being taken by the scruff and man handled rather than finessed, I am sure this will come with time.

On the way back to the airport John informed me that I would be performing the landing. The initial decent into Humberside was simply put the carb air to hot (I’d had to do that a couple of times in the flight due to icing) and re-trim, this put us in a nice steady decent as we headed back to Humberside, makes sense as you’d have the carb air hot anyway. Our approach path set us up on left base on runway 08, tracking towards Elsham (it’s amazing how much of RAF Elsham Wold is still there, though it’s mostly a business park now and the runways are somewhat blocked and the north-south runway is the A-15 dual carriage way from the Humber Bridge.

I turned the aircraft (now slowed down a bit) to the right onto left base in the direction of Barnetby le Wold which sits under the approach path to runway 08, a left turn aligned us with Runway 08. I lowered the flaps to 20 degrees with corresponding power reductions and reduced the speed to around 70kts, the idea being to fly the aircraft onto the runway. With landing clearance obtained I guided the C150 down the approach path; oddly I wasn’t nervous, but I guess I knew John had my back – after all he doesn’t want a trainee pilot bending his C150 ;)

Keeping the numbers at the right position (around 1/3 of the way up the windscreen) was fairly easy with the right trim and throttle settings, once across the fence the power is chopped to idle and the aircraft settled into the landing attitude, and dropped neatly onto the runway. Well almost, the landing assisted by John was smooth and uneventful – thankfully.

I imagine within the next few hours training I’ll be doing most things from start-up to shutdown but I guess that’s the point :)

My next lesson should be Tuesday afternoon (weather permitting), though with 22mph winds (according to the met office) and 40mph gusts along with rain, it’s not looking hopeful, still I have an air-law book to read...

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:56 pm

Flight six: 10th of May 2015
The second of the slow flight training sessions today, but using the flaps rather than just flying the aircraft in the clean configuration as slow as it will go. After the briefing we headed out to the aircraft. As we were walking across to the where the C150 is parked Lakes Mk18 Spitfire was in the process of landing, it’s a Griffon engined Spit and it sounds rather nice.

It was the first flight of the day so Jon let me get on with the A checks, he checked the oil and the fuel on the engine fuel drain whilst he was stood there, though I did everything else. Once the engine was warmed up I taxied the aircraft to the holding point for the run up checks. A POM group PA-28 departed before us and then we had a short hold for another doing a touch and go and then for the Coast Guards brute of a Sikorsky SAR helicopter. With permission to take off granted and the Directional Gyro aligned I opened the throttle and we were off, rotate at 55knots the nose comes up and trim for a 65 knot 500 feet per minute climb to 2,500ft where the air was a bit smoother. A left right weave every 500ft (top and bottom of the altimeter) just to check under the nose for any traffic that might be near us (the Advisory service would tell us if there was anything but its good practice to do this).

Once at altitude and trimmed out at 83 knots, John demonstrated the manoeuvre then it was my turn, we waited a couple of minutes at cruise speed to let the engine cool (45 knots at full power isn’t good for keeping the engine cool). Firstly you have to slow the aircraft down to its slow flying speed that I did on the last lesson, so carb air to hot, power to 1,500 rpm and hold the nose up. At 60knots the carb air goes to hot and the power gets brought up to 1900 rpm. The next step is to lower the flaps, 10 degrees and 100rpm more, let it settle, 20 degrees another 100rpm, 30 degrees another 100rpm and finally 40 degrees and full power, depending on minor changes in nose up attitude the aircraft is now flying at 45-50 knots. As last week the ailerons feel wooley but elevator and rudder authority remains good as they are in the prop wash. I can now see why the Tomahawk got the name Traumahawk that T-tail can’t be good for slow flight as its mostly out of the prop wash.

The power is left at 100% and the flaps brought up 10 degrees at a time, the little 150 literally feels like its jumping forward as the drag from the flaps is removed, the forward pressure on the controls translating to back pressure until the aircraft is at cruise speed and power is reduced to 2350rpm (looks like 2400rpm from the pilots seat). A few more of those then sadly the lesson was drawing to a close, time to head back (the old saying of time flies when you are enjoying yourself rings true).

We established a steady descent down to 1000ft (AGL, based on the QFE for the airport) making sure that the tower that sits on Elsham Wold is visible (it was to the right, which is good) - wouldn't want to hit that, for a right base landing at Humberside. Once stablished the carb air is hot, power reduced and flaps to 10 degrees, with the checks completed and landing clearance given I turned the aircraft onto final and lowered the flaps to 20 degrees. Flying the aircraft all the way down over the threshold then chop the power to idle and let the aircraft settle. Hold backpressure at around 1ft above the runway and the aircraft drops neatly onto the main wheels. I maintain back pressure to keep the nose up (reduces stress on the nose wheel and is also good practice for grass strip and short field landings) and taxi off to park on the grass.

The landing had minimal assistance from John so I am nearly there, he says its going well so I guess it is :)

The ground school is moving on to navigation basics now so that will be something new for me, I also picked up the Human Factors APM and the Operational Principles supplement (which after a quick flip through looks like a couple of the Air Law chapters just padded out a bit), I also picked up the Air Law, Human Factors and Operational Principles practice exam papers. These are the exams I want to get done first (there are six sittings over 18 months) and as the Air Law and Operational Principles are intertwined it makes sense to do them first, and there are some Human Factors bits in air law too so they can be (hopefully) dispatched in the first sitting, leaving me five sittings to do the seven remaining exams, I’ll probably do aircraft technical and principles of flight in the second sitting, leaving me four sittings for the four remaining exams and a re-sit should I need it (hopefully not).

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 7:56 pm

Flight seven: 15th of May 2015
Flight number seven was introducing the stall and how to deal with it when/if it should happen. It was the first flight of the day for Papa-Juliet a full check was in order to make sure that the aircraft was fit for flight – she was so that was all good. Normal start up routine, though no need for the use of the primer, just a couple of pumps on the throttle, turn the key and the 100hp engine was idling away nicely. The usual bits and bobs done, clearance obtained and we were on our way to the runway. Taxying the aircraft is at the moment the only thing that perturbs me. Keeping it straight on the yellow line and turning it (feels so damn wooley) it’s to be frank, unsettling. I’d be happy driving my car at over 100mph on these taxyways yet around walking pace in a little Cessna *shiver*I am sure confidence with that will come in time.

We had to hold for wake turbulence for a departing helicopter before I took off and headed for 2,500ft and the northwest training area. The stall is one of those things that you should never find yourself doing in the normal course of flight but need to be trained for because it could kill you, most will know that a stall occurs when the angle of attack of the wing is greater than the maximum (could happen in a turn) and the boundary layer of air breaks away and the aircraft ceases flying. Inducing one is fairly simple, the first part of the exercise was dealing with onset recovery (not actually completely stalling but getting towards it).

Firstly the HASELL checks (similar to what you do before aerobatics):
Height - is it sufficient for recovery if it goes tits up
Airframe - doors secure, flaps up
Security - lose items stowed, harnesses tight
Engine - everything in the green
Location - not above built up areas, clear of active airfields and airspace
Lookout - (perform a 180 or two 90 degree turns) nothing underneath you.
For subsequent manoeuvres you just do HELL as the Airframe and Security are already established.

So onset of the stall then, carb air goes to hot, and power goes to idle, one hand on the yoke to gradually apply more back pressure and the other ready on the throttle, at 60kts the carb air goes to cold and you wait for the stall warner to go off. As soon as the stall warner goes off the throttle goes to full, the nose is lowered slightly and you climb out of the stall fairly simple and it didn’t pose me any problems.

For the full stall you have to sit through the stall warner keeping the back pressure on until the nose drops, the stall warner goes off for a good 7-8 seconds with the nose getting higher and higher before the 150 noses over, as soon as it does – elevator neutral and apply full power, after a few attempts I managed to recover the aircraft within 150ft.

We returned to Humberside and another assisted landing (getting there), I have a couple more lessons before we start circuit work, next time it is stalling with flaps and the lesson after that will be dealing with the onset of spins (the 150 is not rated for spins so we can’t do the full spin) then it’s on to circuits, I have just over a week to my next lesson as I am away at Santa Pod for the FIA Main Event on bank holiday weekend.

The ground school is progressing well so far, next week sees the end of the principles of flight and aircraft technical ground school and then we move on to navigation.

I may see about leaving the exams for a bit as there is apparently chatter about the nine exams becoming six, though I have an internal air law exam to pass before John will let me go solo – even if my flying were up to it.

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Re: Learning to Fly

Postby mattmoxon » Sun May 31, 2015 8:00 pm

Flight eight: 26th of May 2015
A bit of a break from the last flight as I was away at Santa Pod for the FIA Main Event crewing for NG Motorsports on Chris Parkers Super Pro dragster.

On the agenda for today’s lesson: stalling with flaps deployed. After a quick check over Papa-Juliet (her call-sign is G-AWPJ) was ready for flight. I am getting quicker with the check-lists now (without rushing of course), with the engine started we taxied to holding point Delta whilst a Robinson R44 hover taxied (or “pissed about” as my instructor put it) from the runway to where it was to park. With taxi clearance to the runway holding point granted I taxied the aircraft to holding point Bravo and commenced the pre-take off run up checks. Once complete and permission to depart was given we were away, the wind not knowing what it was doing; the ATIS (Automatic Terminal Information Service) described it as 5 knots variable which made the take off interesting but once I'd taken off, I trimmed the aircraft to climb at 500ft per minute.

Once at cruising height I trimmed her off and settled her into an 82 knot (or there abouts as the wind was having a laugh today) cruise. With the HASELL checks completed John took control momentarily to demonstrate the manoeuvre, then it was my turn. So, HELL checks then; carb air to hot, throttle to 1900 RPM, flaps down to 20 degrees and then throttle all the way to idle, at 60 knots the carb air goes back to cold and back pressure is maintained on the yoke, one hand on the yoke, the other on the throttle. The nose pitches up, and up a bit more (the speed bleeds off much quicker with the flaps causing drag) then beeeeeeeeeeeeep as the stall warner goes off (around 40 knots) the throttle is smoothly opened to full and the aircraft recovered into a climb, once the airspeed stabilises the flaps are brought up 10 degrees at a time. No or very little altitude lost and you are away.

Next was allow it to stall, the back pressure is held on until the aircraft cannot fly anymore and the nose drops sharply, the throttle is opened quickly and smoothly and the aircraft recovered into a climb as before a few practice goes at that and it was time to try a bit of recovery from the onset of spins.

This was probably as violent a manoeuvre as the little Cessna 150 was ever going to give, being a trainer and not an aerobat she's quite docile. Same as the full stall except keeping some power on (1700 RPM) this time the engine torque causes a rapid wing drop leading to the onset of a spin, neutral aileron (they very little effect at low speeds 'mushy' is the best way to describe their response) and elevators and bags of opposite rudder combined with power, then elevator to pull it out of the rather unpleasant attitude it has entered.

With the lessons objectives complete I flew the aircraft back towards Humberside to enter left base on Runway two-zero for what was my first unassisted landing it went rather well :)

After landing I taxied the aircraft back down the runway and parked next to a rather smart German registered Beechcraft 35 to await re-fuelling.

Next time: a bit more on spin recovery and an introduction to the circuit.


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