Breitling contest winner earns his pilot’s license

Swiss watch manufacturer Breitling is congratulating Facebook photo contest winner Jeremy P. Hampton from Overland Park, Kansas, on completing his 11-month training program necessary to officially receive his pilot’s license, the grand prize for the contest the company sponsored just over one year ago.

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Political convention TFRs demand serious study

The FAA has issued first notices of flight restrictions for the two political conventions and flights to, from or through the areas — Tampa, Florida, and Charlotte, N.C. — will be affected, with pilots needing to be alert not only for the announced early Temporary Flight Restrictions, but also for any last-minute changes or additions that may come about.

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In the old days, the word “Contact!” was central to the process of getting things going. The pilot yelled  “Contact!” The mechanic then responded in kind while laying hands on the prop. Seconds later, after a grunt, a flip of the prop, and a puff of smoke, an airplane would leap to life.

Technology has changed that process a bit. But the need to make contact is as important as ever, in whatever form it takes.

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SC Breakfast Club to visit RUQ

On Sunday, Aug. 5, the world’s oldest continually active flying club will make its only annual trip out of South Carolina to the Rowan County Airport (RUQ) in Salisbury, NC.

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Lightning Man

My Old Man met Johnny Smith during an act of of immeasurable kindness. We were finally able to relocate back to Henry’s hometown of Canton, Georgia, in the early 1980s. With our few worldly possessions moved, it was time to fly the Luscombe 8A to her new home.

I drove Henry to the grass field a couple of hours west of our new home where she was based, saw him off and started the drive back to 47A, Cherokee County Airport, now CNI. About an hour into the drive, I was hoping he and Lucy were safely on the ground. Rain was pouring, lightning was cracking and thunder was booming. It was so bad I finally pulled off the road to wait for the storm to pass.

At Cherokee, Johnny had come by to make sure his Champ was properly secured against the impending storm when he saw the little Luscombe land just ahead of the deluge. He rushed to help the pilot tie her down, and when he grabbed the wing strut, lightning popped and he was knocked to the ground. The Old Man was jolted as well.

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Sennheiser debuts passive headset

OSHKOSH — On opening day of AirVenture in Oshkosh, Sennheiser introduced the S1 Passive headset for general aviation pilots.

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Ferry intriguing


During the last four years I have ferried 35 planes from various places in the United States just to Brazil alone. Most of the planes were Cessna 210s, 206s, Caravans, and Barons, but number 35, my most recent, turned out to be not only the exception, but also quite an adventure. Number 35 was a 1980 C152 and the smallest and slowest plane I have ever ferried on such a long route. It will be used by the new owner to teach his young son to fly. The C152 is the best little trainer every built, in my opinion. [Read more...]

Oshkosh: Go or no go?

Air Facts blogger John Zimmerman says all pilots can be divided into two groups: Those for whom the thought of flying into Wittman Regional Airport during AirVenture excites and challenges them and those who think you’re nuts to be in the air within 50 nm of Oshkosh that week. Which are you?

House to vote on Pilots Bill of Rights

The Pilots Bill of Rights, introduced by Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.) and recently passed in the Senate, is scheduled for a vote in the House of Representatives July 23. The bill is expected to pass, according to Washington insiders.






How to fill a hangar

How can your airport fill up its empty hangars? Perhaps the most effective method would be to send a pilot or two into the local middle schools and high schools to tell a few stories, pop a slideshow up on the smartboard, and invite a whole bunch of the kids out to the airport. Let me provide a little context for that idea. It’s valid, believe me. But as fixes go, this isn’t a quick one — nor should it be.

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