Saturday, June 26, 2010

First Annual No-Cancer-Having Fly-In!

It was an interesting weekend… I needed to celebrate being two years cancer free and where better to celebrate than in the air? Sometimes I need a reminder that I survived and life is good.

I arrived at Bill’s early on Friday so I could install my newly repaired radiator and my landing lights. I haven’t flown since installing new fuel lines. Last time I tried is when my radiator broke. It seemed that the winds weren’t going to die down and we would probably end up just flying Saturday.

Travis showed up, then Scott, Chris and Chip arrived. Bill wouldn’t make it until that night. As it got later, the winds let up a little and there were no gusts, so we decided to head out.

When I was warming up, I noticed I had to keep adding primer to keep the engine running. Once I finally got it running it was fine though.

Chris took off and I was next. I got about 50 feet off of the ground when my RPMs started dropping. I had plenty of room to land ahead of me, but before I made the decision, my engine made it for me… it sure got quiet. I went down and flared a little early, but didn’t bounce in too hard. Now I’ve had an engine-out in an ultralight, a Cessna, and a powered parachute…

I taxied back to the other end of the field and started checking everything. The only real change I’d made were the fuel lines and they all looked good. After checking almost everything, I checked the new fuel vent line I had installed. When zip tying it, it seems I put one on a little too tight. It was closed over halfway. I cut it loose, and ran up the engine again and it was perfect.

I was running out of daylight, but decided to make my test flight staying over the field. It was very scary, but all went well and I would have no more trouble through the weekend.

The next morning I awoke to Chris yelling, “Wake up little girls, I’m ready to fly!” It was around 5:30 and he was right, daylight was burning.

Again, Chris was first into the air and I was right behind him. It sure is nice when your engine doesn’t quit! We decided to head South since the wind was predicted to be out of that direction as it picked up throughout the day. We had checked the weather and the clouds were at 1700’ so we decided to go above them. Turns out the tops were around 5,000’ but we made it. It was beautiful and calming up there. We flew South and West, so naturally we thought we were Southwest of Bill’s place, but when we came down Chris pointed out we were actually straight East of it!!! The clouds moving underneath us made us feel like we were moving along.

Anyway, it was a great weekend with good food and even better friends. I can’t wait to do it again.

See you next time!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Father's Day Project / Adventure

I had an interesting Father’s Day Weekend. Travis came over to my house on Saturday with his PPC. We both needed to do some maintenance, including a full tune-up, and I wanted to add some new LEDs I had just ordered from Bear. It took us most of the day, but all went well and after checking the weather we decided to meet Sunday morning for a flight.

I arrived at the field first (as usual!) and got my plane out of my trailer. It took me awhile to get it started with the new fuel lines, but it ran well. The day before I had pointed out to Travis that I had a crack in one of my radiator mounting tabs. Phil had warned me to keep an eye on them since this was an issue on older Powrachutes. After my warmup, I noticed both tabs on top of the PPC were now broken and my radiator was leaning backward… no flying for me. I will head to the local welding shop to see what they can do this week, but I expect eventually I will have to replace it.

Anyway, after putting my PPC back in the trailer, Travis offered to let me fly with him. Soon we were in the air for a much needed flight. It was a little bumpy, but at least we got into the air!

Now I just have to get my radiator fixed before next weekend. I’m celebrating being two years cancer-free with my local PPC flying buddies and I don’t want to miss that!

My new landing lights… not wired yet.

Here’s the back of my mirror that some of you wanted to see. You can see the two mounting tabs on the top don’t line up with the two on the bottom. This allowed me to use four zipties.

The crack…

I put the zipties on it to keep it from damaging the bottom tabs on the ride home.

My new LEDs. You can see the green one reflecting on the prop ring.

Another shot that shows the LEDs.

Pretty new fuel lines!

Back into the trailer, ready to go home.

We’re off, departing runway 17 at Taylor Municipal, T74

Nice fishing spot.

Power lines!!!

Nice big corn field.

Pretty little church and graveyard.

The clouds were causing some strange greens.

Round bales.

This little creek wandered through the farmland.
A lonely tractor.

Sometimes I get it right. This was my favorite photo of the day.

A closer shot.

Back at the airport. This field is just on the other side of our runway.

Here’s another view of the same field.

This Cessna was departing shortly after we landed.

See you next week!