Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Almost there...

So my internet has been down for a few days and I felt so helpless because nowadays it's so vital in most of the things we do. But now I have it back and all is well again.

Today was my second last lesson that I have to do before going for my first solo (which is the lesson before the solo and then the instructor steps out and all of that). The other is the emergency procedures lesson in the simulator. That shouldn't be a problem because I've got most of the main emergencies down.

The only thing holding me off, are the hold offs (round outs) and flares... mostly the stronger crosswind types.

My approach is getting better: crabbing to eliminate drift and getting set up early (just the minor adjustments there) and then sideslipping when short final.

Sideslip is when rudder is used to align the nose to flight path which should be the centreline for landings and ailerons into the wind to eliminate the drift. All of these are pretty straight forward and again just minor adjustments and improvements needed for those.

As soon as I start to level out for the round out - looking for the cruise attitude and at the end of the runway - my nose starts to go all over the place, mostly go left when I had left rudder input in the sideslip. So then I guess I'd have to put in more right rudder. I don't know why I didn't think of this before but I guess it's because I've slowed down and I'd have to put less rudder input?

Anyways, the other thing is I would either flare too early/too high or too late/too low. So then I would sometimes balloon (so i add a bit of power) but still land hard, or I land flat.

These things I need to work on a little bit more and I'm not pressured by other people solo-ing before me because I'd rather feel comfortable to do these things all by myself before solo-ing than just getting it over with.

In other news, about 7 people from my class have already gotten their PPL, and 6+ more are waiting to get flight tested. Contrast this to a few people who are still in the simulator phase of the training. That seems like a big spread but it's actually better than some years in the past.

My friend was showing me his logbook and I saw that his first two flights were almost back to back and all of the sudden, his third flight was 3 months later. That's pretty long for in between flights. The reason was they grouped his class into 2 groups and they wanted everyone from the first group to solo first before they started the second group, which is pretty weird but I guess now they've improved it quite a bit.

Also, the first airplane (and the 2nd and 3rd) C-GSEQ just finished getting it's new engine. Now I'm not sure why they had to put a new engine on the airplane but I shall find out soon. It took them about three weeks and today it had its first run-up. So that's pretty exciting.

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