Monday, June 29, 2015

Rusty Pilot

Yea! I finally got back in the air today!  The wx looked great and there were NO contractors working in or outside of our house.
 I updated my data card for the 530W and off I went to Ocean City Airport.  I took my time and really went over the plane during my pre-flight, we haven't flown since May 30th.  Everything looked great, I had 27 gallons of fuel on board for the flight and iPad and data had a fresh update.
I climbed out of OC and headed up the coast. The pictures were ok, but I didn't really care since I was viewing it first hand.  The beach was getting crowded with umbrellas and I kept my head on a swivel for banner tows.  I cruised along at 2700' listening to music, OC's CTAF and Dover Approach.
I decided to take on some fuel at Sussex County, KGED so I turned west just north of the Indian River inlet bridge.  I switched over to GED's CTAF and monitored traffic.  There were two flights of RV's departing and one remaining in the area to play airshow team.  Smoke on...smoke off...good gravy, we're trying to make pattern calls here.

I made a nice landing in the crosswind and taxied in to take on fuel. Service was quick and my turn around just as fast.  I was back in the air heading home to OXB.  I did work on slow flight and a steep turn or two, then pointed back to the coast and the Indian river inlet bridge for a fly by heading south.
A fun hour or so in the air and a beautiful view.  I hope to get back in the air this week for a trip over to Millville to catch up with a few friends.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Planned Flights

Its a gorgeous day and I am sitting here typing while waiting for the stone mason to show up. I should be at the airport pulling 08Romeo out of hibernation and getting some air time or at the very least sitting on the beach working on my tan.

While I sit here and wait I decided to post some info on our planned flights for the end of summer and fall season. So far we are locked into reservations for our late summer trip to Jekyll Island.
We went back and forth on a hotel and while the Westin on Jekyll would be fantastic, it was decided that we should save some money and book at the Hampton Inn.  With a huge fall trip scheduled we wanted to watch the flying budget dollars and the Hampton has always provided a clean room and great service on prior trips.
For our fall trip we decided on attending the Beech Aero Clubs BACFest.  This year the gathering of mice will be in Dubuque, Iowa.  It will be a busy few days with a Fly-out with lunch to Abel Island, mouse maintenance clinics, a Mississippi River cruise with dinner,a shopping trip for the significant others with lunch, member meeting with lunch, and a Banquet in the River View Room located at our hotel, The Grand Harbor Resort and River Convention Center.
On departure day, Sunday, Mary and I decided to make the flight out to Rapid City, KRAP.  It's five hours flight time and it will cross off one of my bucket list items, viewing the Mount Rushmore National Memorial. I would also like to see the Devils Tower and visit the Badlands National Park. Maybe the last two by air, TBD.
It will be a busy flying two weeks but I am really excited.  It will be a fun trip for Mary and I and I'm sure one to add to our 'most' memorable flights.
We are also working on a trip out to Dayton Ohio and a trip to Boston to visit family. Maybe we can wrap an overnight or two in Dayton before BACFest, that would make for shorter legs on the overall trip and give us some time to see our friends.  Mary and I have also talked about getting back to Maine, maybe a four day get-away to Bar Harbor.  So much to see and do.
Next up my flight physical scheduled for July27th and getting my updated aircraft registration in that expires July 31st.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

N/A Updates

June has been a busy month, unfortunately not for my flying.  Mary and I decided to update our home with a total repaint, new crown molding, ceiling fans and light fixtures.  It kind of sounds like our push to sell the old home but we plan on staying here.

The indoor project is finishing up and the last few items are outdoor related.  We decided to add a stone wall around our plantings and I have a company coming out to power wash the place. I think that should do it for a while but there are two bathrooms we could update.

I'm looking forward to getting back in the air. We have scheduled a few trips and locked in some reservations so I will have some flying posts to add soon.

Fly safe!

Thursday, June 11, 2015


It's going to be a great line up for the Ocean City Air Show!

6/13 Saturday Sequence of Flight

The OC Air Show flight performances will begin at 12:00 noon on Saturday centered at 16th street on the Boardwalk. The sequence of performers is as follows:

6/14 Sunday Sequence of Flight

The OC Air Show flight  performances will begin at 12:00 noon on Sunday centered at 16th street on the Boardwalk. The sequence of performers is as follows:

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Comment Spam

From Wikipedia:

Spam in blogs (also called simply blog spam, comment spam, or social spam) is a form of spamdexing. (Note that blogspam also has another meaning, namely the post of a blogger who creates posts that have no added value to them in order to submit them to other sites.) It is done by posting (usually automatically) random comments, copying material from elsewhere that is not original, or promoting commercial services to blogs, wikis, guestbooks or other publicly accessible online discussion boards. Any web application that accepts and displays hyperlinks submitted by visitors may be a target.

This type of spam originally appeared in Internet guestbooks, where spammers repeatedly filled a guestbook with links to their own site and with no relevant comment, to increase search engine rankings. If an actual comment is given it is often just "cool page", "nice website", or keywords of the spammed link.

I have been getting spam comments from Prime Industries, Inc., to the point I decided I needed to call them out. I thought it best to start small and make a phone call. Everyone I talked to was very nice, they asked for my name and number so they could call to confirm the issue was resolved.  Honestly I thought, ok, I'll play along and we'll see where this goes.

I got a call back in less than ten minutes with a person apologizing for leaving the comments on my blog. She had mentioned that she saw my blog listed on Blog Rank and I was listed in the top 25 for Aviation Blogs: The ultimate rank. I thanked the person who called and let them know I appreciated the quick and classy response.

So just to show there are no hard feelings and that I appreciate a company that 'takes care of its business' I am posting a one time link on this post.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Fun Flights and Current, Still

08Romeo, ready to fly
I was running out of time for instrument currency and I needed an approach to keep me legal flying in the system. I really need to take advantage of the wx days we get here in Ocean City and make the hop between GED and OXB to just knock out an approach when I can.
I posted on Facebook looking for a Safety Pilot.  Mike B is out of town and I do miss his torture in the air, not to mention just hanging out with a good friend for the day.  So since I posted I had hoped to hook up with someone I had flown with previously.  For the non-flyers reading this a safety pilot keeps eyes outside watching for traffic and the pilots overall conformance to the approach in other words don't screw up knocking the rust off.  Honestly I wasn't very rusty, shooting approaches is comfortable and flow pretty smooth.
flying south running the gauntlet
Once I posted on Facebook Jeff F from the Richmond area said he was free.  Excellent!!  I haven't flown with Jeff in ages.  Jeff was once hangared at 33N and we did get to fly a good bit together.  I helped Jeff get his  second plane, an Archer (93Zulu), home from Texas after his purchase.  We had some laughs over that flight today during lunch.  We both learned so much about cross country flying and how bad we both really needed to get the instrument rating.  I also flew in Jeff's first plane, a Cherokee (26Juliet) on my first trip to the aviation mecca, First Flight in Kill Devil Hills North Carolina.
crossing the Chesapeake bay, looking over my shoulder at the cloud build ups over the peninsula.
I guess what I'm getting at is a pilot only trusts certain people to be their safety pilot, well, at least I do. I would let my Bride fly with Jeff anytime, so trust is important.
I traded a text message or two and advised engine start and wheels up shortly.  I had filed a flight plan and pretty much got as filed with only a heading on departure that I would need to follow until picked up on radar. Easy peasy, I'm off to enjoy the gorgeous day.
Richmond, VA
I flew south along the Delmarva peninsula trying to avoid the build ups that were guarding the coast. I managed to deviate, as approved, then return to my initial course direct Cape Charles. Once clear of the Patuxent restricted space I was turned south west direct Richmond, thanks approach for the short cut!
On the ramp at KFCI

Smooth flying despite the build ups. I made my way for KFCI via Richmond and couldn't pick up the weather (AWOS), it was mentioned in the NOTAMS as 'unavailable' until June 2nd.  Approach had no NOTAM with that info. Based on the Richmond ATIS info I selected runway three-three. As I got closer I did finally hear the weather at Chesterfield County and advised Approach I wanted to change my approach to the RNAV GPS 15.
I was directed to turn direct DOCEV and expect vectors to final. I agreed and advised whatever is easier for approach. As directed I was turned to final and once established on the approach with the field in view I cancelled IFR.
Jeff's Saratoga
I made a good landing and turned off at the first taxiway. Jeff was at the terminal and pointed me to parking. I took on 17 gallons of fuel, thanks for your discount Jeff! Once I sumped the fuel we climbed in and hatched our plan for a couple of approaches. I would fly to KPTB, Dinwiddie County Airport in Petersburg, Virginia.
First up was the RNAV GPS 23. We were headed direct ONIKE for the procedure turn/holding pattern and then inbound. I made a nice approach with one drop below the altitude of 2000. Jeff quickly pointed it out as I was making a correction. Everything else looked good and I kept the needles centered.  This was a low approach only and was followed with a climb out pointing us back to KFCI for the ILS RWY 33.
1RW Panel
Another nice approach with a decent landing. We taxied in and secured 08Romeo so we could get some flying time in Jeff's Saratoga. We passed on lunch, instead choosing to fly then eat when we get back. Jeff pre-flighted 1Romeo Whiskey and used his neat tug to pull the plane out. I could not imagine pulling this aircraft out with a full belly of fuel.
Richmond Tower
I had to do some weird aerobic move to get my self in but had plenty of room once belted in. Getting in from the right side is hard on my hip and knee. Jeff fired up 1RW and she really purrs. I was amazed how quiet she was with such a big power plant up front. Of course once the air conditioning was on I was hooked. We taxied out and departed runway one five as I watched the fuel flow 'gulp' increase. 1RW climbed out and just ate up the ground below, a sweet climbing machine and Jeff only works her at 60% power. I loved the glass panel, everything was neat and well organized and Jeff made it just flow.
....and Terminal
First for Jeff was the KOFP, Hanover County Municipal Airport  RNAV GPS RWY 16 approach. Jeff worked with Potomac Approach and lined up a second approach into Richmond, KRIC. Jeff made a nice approach with the autopilot and flew it by hand from the Final Approach Fix. Low approach followed by a climb out for Richmond. Approach took us out and around with vectors to bring us back for a nice intercept for the RNAV GPS Z RWY 16. The 'Z' approach is for the airport that has two RNAV approaches to the same runway.
crossing the bay, south east view towards Norfolk
north view looking at the cloud build ups I'll once again cross.
This would terminate in a low approach followed by going missed and returning to Chesterfield. The tower gave us a 190* turn on climb out and it passed us right over the parallel taxiway, it looked and felt like a fly by the tower. I had a good laugh, negative ghost rider, the pattern is full.

I'll take that tail wind!
I got some stick time as we headed back to FCI. The Saratoga handles very well, I could feel the difference from the Sundowner.  She was responsive, didn't require much trim and just flew really nice, I could see why Jeff made this selection. We entered the pattern and turned final a tad high but Jeff said she floats like a rock. He made it look easy and set 1RW on her mains followed by the nose gear. This is where I really felt the weight difference, this is a big plane. 
taxi for departure rwy 15
Jeff took me out to lunch at a pizza place not far from the airport, I can't remember the name. The food and service was very good and it seemed as soon as we sat down we were heading back. 
doing that pilot stuff
It was a fun day flying and I am looking forward to making the trip again very soon. I saddled up for home and filed for this leg too. KFCI HCM JAMIE KOXB.  I was cleared as filed and soon cut loose for 7000.  The altitude selection was good, climbed above the build ups and only surfing my way through a few between Richmond and the Harcom VOR. Approach was excellent, they always do a great job in this area. I went feet wet and crossed the Chesapeake Bay headed for the peninsula and pointed directly at KMFV, Accomack airport. I turned north at the JAMIE intersection and enjoyed the view and ride to Ocean City.
Traffic was light at KOXB, I heard the jump plane and one aircraft inbound from the north. We coordinated and everything went smooth as I was number two to land behind the south bound traffic. I slowed down as I turned final so the jump plane could depart and as he climbed out I made another nice landing. 

08Romeo, back home
Overall a great day flying and once again I beat the instrument fairy to the prize....I'm good until the end of September!!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

RWY 2/20, 14/32 CLSD

It's looking like a ground pounding type of day. No, not because of the wx forecast but instead both runways are closed at KOXB. :(
The thought process is to make a run to Helen's Sausage House for supplies, check out Summit Aviation at KEVY for fees and ground transportation and visit the Veterans Cemetery to visit Mary's parents.  We like to keep the plaque cleaned up and make sure Pop has a flag at all times.
It's 9am and we are heading out the door for today's adventure. I haven't made this run since the end of March, I don't miss it. We made good time with little traffic heading north bound. I made a stop at Helen's for a sandwich and we purchased 5 lbs of links for later use...yummy. Back on the road heading north north-east, I followed RT896 then RT71/301 to the Veterans Memorial. We made another quick stop for flowers and then made three right turns to the memorial.
The grounds are always immaculate, the ground crew does a fantastic job and I'm sure all the families appreciate the special care they provide. It gives me chills to see all the flags, so many men and women that have served our Country.
Our next stop was a six minute drive. We checked in at Summit Aviation, KEVY to inquire about a crew/courtesy car. They do have a car available, first come first serve. The remaining ride south was typical travel time, a bit more traffic than this morning but moving very well.
I'm looking forward to the next visit by plane, 40 minutes each way sure beats and hour and forty minutes of driving each way.