Sunday, August 15, 2010

Long Saturday!

For the third weekend in a row, I headed to Blum! Craig had invited Ralph to come out so a few of us could get our checkrides. I got there at 5:30 and by sunrise, we were ready to go. My PPC was still in the process of being fixed, so Craig had me fly another Pegasus. It was a nice machine and flew well.

I finally met Seth after knowing him through the forums for years now. I also met Bruce who is getting into PPCs, and Ryan, who is Andre's son. Bobby was there as well and took Paul for another ride in the orange Pegasus. I think they have a deal, if so Paul will flying soon!

I have a ton of photos, so I'll keep the story short. Seth got his BFR, Ryan and I got our PPC endorsements, I think Bruce got his endorsement the day before and they still had more to go the next day. Ralph was great to fly with, very calm and gave me a few tips as well. My PPC may be fixed... I had some issues when doing the break-in, but I'm not sure it's anything bad, maybe carb ice. I'll know soon.

Anyway, hope you enjoy the photos.

Craig watching another student while Seth gets ready.

Ryan flying with Ralph in the back.

I saw Stan flying, but never got to say hello. With my checkride and everything else going on, I didn't see him before he packed up.
Seth is ready to takeoff.
Bobby setting up with Paul.
Seth posing in front of the sun!
Bobby and Paul are almost ready.
Sometimes my camera amazes me. Notice the headphone cable hanging down!
Bobby wasn't happy with the first takeoff and wisely aborted. Craig was watching closely for the second attempt! It went well.

My favorite photo of the day. Thanks Seth!
Craig watches Seth.
Bruce and Ralph in Craig's Airwolf.
Stan doing a touch-n-go...
and a fly-by!
Now this was just funny!
I made this photo a little too bright, but I wanted to show the colors in Craig's parachute.
BTW guys, is that a whole tree stuck in the right side landing gear?
Bruce and Ralph again.
Still funny!
Seth flying overhead. He was very nervous about his impending engine-off landing.
Dear Jesus, please help me through this landing!
Gets quiet huh?
Look at that! Nice and soft. Everyone started cheering for such a nice engine-out landing.
I'm not sure why Craig was reaching for his gun... I thought Seth did everything Craig instructed him to do! This is Texas though, sometimes that's just how we say hello!
Okay, so he was reaching for his radio! My mistake.
Can't wait to fly again!


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Chris Flies The Champ

Phil mentioned that he'd found a Champ for rent for $80/hr and he was getting checked out in it. I knew Chris had a biennial coming up, so I recommended that he get his tailwheel endorsement.

He called the instructor, Les, and they decided to meet up last night and get started. I tagged along to get some photos. Les is a very nice guy and both Phil and Chris say he's a great instructor. You don't hear that every day!

Chris and Les taxiing over to the fuel pumps.

Chris adding some fuel.

Les hand-propping the plane - no starter!

Look at the serious look on Chris' face!

After many attempts, Les got the plane started and they were off.

Taking off.

Coming in for a landing.

Happy flying! Jack

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Travis Gets His BFR

Travis was heading to Blum to get his BFR with Craig McPherson, so I tagged along. Craig had offered to let me fly his Airwolf and I wasn’t going to pass that up! Not to mention my PPC was still in his shop and I wanted to see how bad it looked. Turns out it wasn’t too bad, in fact I couldn’t feel any rough spots inside the cylinder, but the piston had a black spot on it. Hopefully it will be in the air again soon.

We arrived Friday afternoon so we would have time to check Travis’ EGTs and possibly replace the probes. He and Craig got them fixed without replacing them.

Even though we were hearing thunder in the distance and seeing dark clouds, Craig assured us that the storms had been building up in the afternoons and then dying off and it wouldn't rain. So, when the storms hit… it was poured!! It trapped us in his shop for a long time, then we finally made a dash for Travis' car and we were soaked! We headed off to the hotel for a few hours of sleep before 5:30AM rolled around, hoping the field wouldn't be flooded in the morning.

In the morning, it was calm and even with all of the rain, the field only had a few puddles. We were good to go! A few of Craig’s friends showed up, including Bobby’s (Bobcat) Dad (Stan) to fly their new red Airwolf, Andre in his John Deere Airwolf, & Roger in his Red Pegasus. Another guy, Paul, would show up later for a ride in the Tiger Pegasus I sold Bobby awhile back as he’s thinking of buying it.

Craig was a busy instructor. He flew four different PPCs!!

I hope you enjoy the photos. It was hard to narrow down 364 photos! I got it down less than 40 something! Oh, and by the way, Travis passed his BFR.

Craig’s Airwolf

Stan setting up.

Andre's John Deere Airwolf.

Sadie, with Travis in the background!
Almost ready.
The sunrise was spectacular!

Stan flying low, lining up for a touch-n-go.
Roger heading out.
Roger down low.
Andre practicing his landings.
Hay, it's Texas!
Craig instructing Stan before his engine-off landing.
This is what Stan looks like making an interesting takeoff!
This is what Craig looks like when Stan makes an interesting takeoff!!
Such a nice plane.

More instruction.

And some more instruction! See a theme here?
Andre off again.
Roger off again.

Roger waving as he flies by.
Bobby's Mom getting a ride with Craig. It sure is quiet with the engine off!
I think that's a smile!! She said she needs one of her own now! That could turn out to be an expensive flight!
I was waiting for some good shots of this parachute all day.

Stan heading out again.

Bright colors.

This was my old PPC. I sure like that chute!

Look right... no, your other right!
I'll be out at Craig's again next week to finish off some training, so expect more soon.