VFR into IFR kills two

The private pilot had logged 175.7 hours, including18.1 hours in the Cessna 182 prior to the crash. He obtained an abbreviated weather briefing, filed an IFR flight plan and took off on a cross-country flight to Fredericksburg, Texas.

The pilot was accompanied by his wife. The purpose of the flight was to celebrate their wedding anniversary. While en route, an air traffic controller queried the pilot if he had the current weather information for his destination airport. [Read more…]

Why worry about knock in an aircraft engine?

My last several columns have been on the relationship between knock and unleaded fuels in aircraft engines. I have received several questions from people who have experienced knock in their car engines, especially in the 1970s and 1980s. They note that knock didn’t harm their auto engines, so why am I worried about a little knock in an aircraft engine?

There are a number of significant differences between auto and aircraft engines. The biggest is liquid vs. air cooling. [Read more…]