A niche of a niche

Dave Hensch taking off from a dolly.

Do you hold an Israeli pilot certificate? If so, are you looking to add a seaplane rating? Well, I’ve found the guy. Probably, the only guy – in the world – who can help you. How’s that for a niche market? [Read more…]

Sensing good things on the horizon

Sense and Avoid top view. Artwork from Boldmethod.

While flying, have you ever looked down to tune a radio? Check an engine or fuel gauge? Referenced your navigation chart? Chat with your passenger? Focus on something on the ground?

Well, then you aren’t seeing and avoiding to the best of your ability. Wouldn’t it be nice to have some help? Something that doesn’t cost what TCAS (traffic collision avoidance system) costs. [Read more…]

Stories from the logbook

The evidence we're all connected is in the page of my logbook.

We’re all connected…somehow. A July 1987 entry in my logbook proves it.

I was barely 17 years old and had flown our 1946 J-3 Cub on July 17 from our airpark home – Shady Acres – to the annual Arlington Fly-In. My logbook notes, “massive headwinds, heavy x-wind when landing.” At this point, I was still a student pilot, and was signed off for the 70-mile cross country flight two days before. [Read more…]

1,000 pilots x $20 = 3 new pilots

RobbinsSibs

We don’t need to attract every kid, just the next kid… or three.

Seventeen-year-old Ella, 16-year-old Jonathan and 15-year-old Benjamin Robbins are passionate about aviation. The homeschooled trio from Ferndale, Wash., have been designing and building their own radio-controlled aircraft for several years. [Read more…]

If these bomber jackets could talk…

WWII flight jacket of Mr. A.B. Clement.  He was a B-24 top gunner, and flew 50 missions.

Cdr. Leroy Robinson, a World War II naval aviator, flew in the Pacific Theatre and is a confirmed “Ace.” He also flew in the Korean Conflict and had a 32-year career at Delta Air Lines. In failing health now, most of his time is spent in his Civil War-era Tignall, Georgia, farmhouse.

Stories like this, and more, are what photographer John Slemp (owner of Aerographs) seeks to collect using his camera to document both bomber jackets and the brave men who wore them. [Read more…]

FAA finds research partner, seeks perps

The FAA is behind the power curve – big time – when it comes to the nascent (and rapidly growing) remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) industry.

On Jan. 12 CNN announced a research agreement with the FAA to “to advance efforts to integrate Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) into newsgathering and reporting.”

As a distant cousin to mainstream media, I can imagine great uses for RPA in media. But media isn’t the only segment of society anxious to launch skyward.

[Read more…]

Care to comment?

For those who love commenting on this website’s content, we have switched the comment section to the Facebook platform. The section will work the same, but now you’ll need a Facebook account to comment.

Why make this change? Since early 2009, nearly 18,000 comments have been approved to appear on this website. Many thousands more have been submitted but not approved for a variety of reasons. Until now comments have been moderated by Janice Wood or myself. That takes a great deal of time and energy. From what I’ve observed, the overall tone on websites using Facebook comments tends to remain more civil and on topic. And that is what this should be about… respectful discussion.

What time it isn’t

In 1998 Charles Spence – our beloved Capital Comments columnist – was awarded Lifetime Achievement Awards from both the National Business Aviation Association and the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

We played a part in making sure Charlie (as we call him) and his lovely wife Majel could be on hand to accept the awards by assigning Charlie the task of helping us cover the back-to-back conventions in Las Vegas and Palm Springs. After all, it was to be a surprise. [Read more…]

Reduce, reuse, recycle… hangars in this case

The great state of California reduced the number of general aviation airports in 2014 by at least one. Specifically, Rialto Municipal (L67) was shut down on Sept. 18 to make way for a 1,439-acre residential and business center. (I know, but don’t get me started…)

From the ashes of L67, nearby Flabob Airport (RIR) will reuse Rialto’s hangars. Flabob is just 8 nm on a heading of 169° from L67… as the homebuilt flies.

[Read more…]