The wide range of opinions in the aviation community is something I continuously marvel at. Take our continuing coverage on the update of the Pilot’s Bill of Rights 2 legislation. The comments vary widely, both in scope and tone. [Read more…]
Regardless of the endeavor, success comes as a result of focus, determination, and persistence. Admittedly, that’s not exactly a revolutionary idea.
The steps required to facilitate those points are somewhat more mysterious, however.
Many an entrepreneur has failed even though their idea, product, or the service they intended to deliver was well suited to the marketplace. More often than not, the difference between success and failure has to do with the clarity of the mission they’ve set themselves on.
Your local airport probably suffers from this exact problem. [Read more…]
“Light-Sport Aircraft are too expensive. I thought they were going to be affordable.”
Statements like these are too common, but not particularly accurate.
Some superbly appointed Light-Sport Aircraft (LSA) are rather expensive at $150,000 to $200,000. However, many carbon fiber LSA are half the price of a new Skyhawk 172, although they can fly faster using 50% less fuel while providing 10 inches more width inside. Does that make them pricey or simply more than some want to spend?
Fortunately, affordable choices are available. Let’s look at four relatively affordable alternatives. [Read more…]
“I’m OK! Are you OK?”
As I hung upside down, shoulder harnesses digging into my collarbones, I tried to make sense of the broken glass, bent metal and wet sand that surrounded me. Just 60 seconds prior, I had been rolling down a beautiful grass strip in the Cascades. I watched the airspeed build and felt the tail come up as I advanced the throttle and worked the rudders through the takeoff. Then came the sickening sound of the prop digging into the turf. [Read more…]
Even though little remains of the FAA’s Flight Service function, some of us still remember the old-fashioned ways.
Up front, I’ll admit I’m old school, but only to an extent. I prefer steam to glass, and a stick to an automatic transmission, for example, but I’d rather use metric than SAE. Go figure. [Read more…]
The year was 1606. King James of England (and Scotland) boldly authorized a group of entrepreneurial types to cross the Atlantic in a leaky wooden boat in search of gold, timber, and a route across the New World to the Pacific, by water.
The party consisted of 104 brave souls, all bent on bettering their positions in life. They came west to become wealthy, or wealthier, before returning home to England, civility, and the latest fashions.
For some, the experiment worked out. For many it did not.
Yet, whatever the outcome, the original British Invasion had begun and there was no stopping the trend. It’s still going on today. The New World is the place to be, baby. [Read more…]
Q: We have a 1981 Cessna 182 with the Lycoming O540 L3C5D engine, which has the Cessna-installed turbo system. Lately, we’ve been experiencing some pretty high oil consumption with quite a bit of oil on the belly.
A compression check shows high compressions with the exception of #6, which has gone from 75/80 to 60 in the last 16 months. It has gone from 64 to 60 in the last three months.
We’ve had the plane for around three years. It was using about a quart every 10 hours up until about the last six months. It is currently consuming around four quarts per hour. [Read more…]
Prior to 1927, many well-informed people — as well as the general public — continued to think of aviation as a stunt to be marveled at or an amusement, but not something of concrete accomplishment.
These attitudes changed during 1927 with many epic flights that proved the capability of modern aircraft and powerplants — flights that saw distance and duration records broken on a regular basis.
Charles Lindbergh’s solo flight across the Atlantic to Paris was the first epic flight to grip the attention of the public. [Read more…]
Something interesting is happening in General Aviation. It’s largely being driven at the grass root level, and frankly these developments fascinate and encourage me.
The industry has noted a loss of participation in past decades, with fewer active pilots taking to the skies. We’ve bemoaned this reality for years. While some point a finger at regulatory issues, others single out high cost as a detrimental factor, while a handful of us blame an aging fleet as the reason fewer of us are climbing into a cockpit, firing up the engine, and rotating skyward.
All these factors play a role, certainly. But none of them is truly insurmountable. None are so universally daunting they can’t be overcome. They are valid reasons for concern, but they are not even close to representing the end of GA as we know it.
There is a bright shining light on the horizon, with blue skies above. Truly there is. [Read more…]
In my last column, Tracking down answers at Oshkosh, I wrote about the disappearance of the diesel cycle engine in the Cessna 182. From that article, people might think that diesel cycle engines in general aviation aircraft are dead. Well, maybe not dead, just on life support.
The reason for the continued interest is more from third world countries than from the U.S., but there is still significant market pressure to continue work on new diesel models. [Read more…]