FAA Medical

Sep. 9th, 2010 03:36 pm
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
FAA Medical says it's in "final review" now.... Do I get worried now?


May. 17th, 2010 01:05 pm
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
Another step is taken.

Met the local 'good' AME in the area that likes to handle interesting cases. I passed everything for the class III with the exception of the right eye. He said all my paperwork and tests were in good order. I had just about every piece of paper the FAA will likely want to see. Now he submits it to OK City and we wait for the papermill to turn and spit out a temp medical and an introduction letter to the local FSDO for a medical flight test to prove I can land a plane with only one eye. This I already know I can do, Mischa and I have been flying in the cheetah and I've ironed out most of my problems there already.

So another step is taken and now I'm back to waiting. I've already waited 6 months since the initial event. I can wait a little while longer.
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
The packet from retina doc arrived in the mail. Scanned and sent to my senior ame friend to check it. He says, go get your medical and start the ball rolling with the FAA to get your medical back unrestricted after the monovision medical flight ride.
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
Today I rode with a friend on a round robin flight across some very pretty spring time countryside. The marked difference from near DFW to just an hours flight away was amazing. Even out in the country though you still saw them, gas wells, pump-jacks, oil storage tanks, big obnoxious houses on zero lot lines, pavement everywhere when you got closer to the towns..

I watched those green fields today slip under and behind our wings and I thought about the past..
about barnstomers, and biplanes..
about cubs with big fat low pressure tires..
I wondered what it must have been like to be able to hop the hedge and drop into a farmers pasture and not get shot at..
to have it all new, for aviation to be fresh to people...
to take people aloft in an age where being sued at the drop of a hat was unheard of...

I wondered what it was like to not have gaswells everywhere you look, those big obnoxious houses on zerio lot lines and pavement everywhere..

I'm sure a lot of my thoughts were influenced by some of the exhibits at Tyler Pounds. They had pictures of Love Field from the 1920's, when it was just a big grass field and nothing but biplanes on it. Golden age aviation at its finest. Over on the civil aviation portion of the museum there were big advertising posters for the cessna 140's. A wooden rib from a J3 cub, pictures and models of planes from other times. Flying in another world than the one we live in now...

But you know, on the way back home, flying over the spring time Texas pastures at 2000 feet, there were times when you could almost hear the sound of the wind in the wires. You could almost see the farms the way they must have seen them 60, 70, 80 years ago. If you squinted just right you could look past the pavement, the freeways.. If you looked sideways just right, you could glimpse a flight into the past.

Our route today.. http://tinyurl.com/ybhoonj
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
It's all over the aviation websites so I'm sure everyone knows. However you never know..

A heads up for anyone who doesn't know, the FAA is expiring the paper Airman Certificates as of March 31st.

If you've still got one, go here and fill out the form and request your new one. FAR 61.19(h) reads: “Except for a temporary certificate issued under §61.17 or a student pilot certificate issued under paragraph (b) of this section, the holder of a paper pilot certificate issued under this part may not exercise the privileges of that certificate after March 31, 2010.”

I'd sure hate to be holding an old paper one and get ramped somewhere. Note, if your certificate still has your social security number on it you can request a new plastic certificate and not have to pay the $2.00 charge for the replacement.
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
Texas had a long and varied history during WWII. On March 10th a very important group will finally get some recognition for their service during the war. The WASP will be presented the congressional gold medal at the US Capital.

Formed in late 1942 they originally trained out of what was then called Howard Hughes Field(since renamed Houston Hobby) in Houston. In early 1943 the operation was moved to Avenger Field in Sweetwater Texas. 18 classes trained more than 1100 women pilots. While they were trained to fly anything in the military fleet, they were employed under the Civil Service program, not the military. As such they paid their own way when they joined and eventually left Sweetwater when the program was disbanded in 1944. When one of their own died in a training or flight mishap, there were no military benefits. The lady pilots took up a collection among themselves to take care of their own. They weren't given military benefits until congress granted them in 1977.

After 65 years these women will get the recognition they deserve.

We should all take a moment on the 10th to remember their under-appreciated service to our country.

Avenger Field in Sweetwater Texas KSWW has what I hear is a really nice museum dedicated to the WASP. Their website is here.


Nov. 7th, 2009 08:39 pm
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Congrats to R today for the successful completion of her Private Pilot checkride! Way to go girl!

Another pilot gets their wings today, the first one I've been officially instrumental in seeing to completion.

This is an awesome feeling!
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
sitting here...
chilling out for a few...
it's been a quick and intense 4 to 5 weeks...
and one more groundschool class to go to wrap up and give them their certs...

but man..
it is SO FREAKING COOL to watch nearly all of them succeed on the practice exam..
and the one that didn't, I know what he did, and I know how to fix it for him...

it's like it's what I was made to do...
this feels freaking fantastic!

it almost makes up for the h*ll work is putting me through...

slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
Up reasonably early for a saturday, but it's to the airport, so who cares!

While I hadn't planned on flying the club 172, it seemed that fate had determined that if we were to fly, that's the plane to do it in today.

Now it's been so long since I've been to Lancaster that they've forgotten my standard breakfast order, I'm gonna have to fix that. They were busy this morning, not EVERYONE was going to the airshow it seems. The little military jet they keep out there took off while we were eating and came back for a low pass on the runway, that thing just looks like a whole lot of fun.

Heading back to the plane Kathy and I decide to head up the east side of the metroplex. I've never landed at 1F7 Airpark East so it was on the checklist. Other than not seeing it until nearly too late it was a fun little field to shoot. The runway there is in really nice shape. The taxiways are a little rough, but all in all it's a nice little field. I like! We hop back up in the air to take a look at Rives. The AFD warns that the runway is overgrown with 2-3 foot weeds and grass and that the surface is asphalt in poor condition. I hadn't decided yet if I wanted to commit the 172 to the little airport or not until I turned into their downwind pattern. Looking over the field from pattern altitude there was nothing down there that looked appealing. In fact, if I had an engine out I think I'd take the field beside the strip before I risked the pavement. The entire northern end of the runway is completed overgrown, there are big clumps down the rest of the runway. I decided to take a pass on logging that one in the logbook this morning.

So then where to go next, where to go next.

Well, if I'd just been looking at an overgrown runway, I figured it was time to show Kathy a real NICE grass runway, T48. Jim's field is certainly on the short list of places to visit so we head over there. Overflying the field I noticed that they've put down some runway edge markers with white painted tires. Nice. The field looks good, a bit damp off the north end, not bad, and we won't touch down there in the turnaround anyway, the rest of it looks just fine. Once I got into the left pattern for 13 I called my position and intentions on UNICOM. A voice from the ground comes up on the radio, "You shooting touch and go or coming to visit?" I laugh in the cockpit, that's a first for me, "How about a visit for a while!" I say and work the pattern. Over the trees, full flaps and a decent soft field landing is turned in. I turn around and taxi up to the hanger and shut down as two trucks pull up. Michael Jaffe steps out of his truck to introduce himself just as Sue Phillips is doing the same. We pull up some chairs around the little patio table and spend what has to be the most enjoyable hour or so I've done in a long time talking. Enjoying the sunshine, talking airplanes, watching the deer in the fields walking through with the horses. After a bit a 150 joins the pattern, and Michael tells us it's Darrel, he keeps his plane there in the hanger, so another is added to the party. You couldn't meet a nicer group of folks if you tried.

It just doesn't get any better than this folks.

Sue and Michael both said, several times, to spread the word, T48 is open and more than happy to have folks come do touch and go's, land, visit, what not. Just come out and fly! The picnic tables will be coming back before too long Michael said. They are committed to continuing to make the airport a better place for us to fly into. We definitely need to plan a DFWPilots.com flyin picnic out there in the spring. You can't ask for a better location and field.

Be warned though, when you announce yourself in the pattern, don't be surprised if someone asks if you are coming to visit, and if you've got the time, then sit a spell. It'll sure cure a lot of what ails you.

We got aboard the 172 and I did my first soft field takeoff in a lot longer than I care to admit and we were up and out of the field with nary a problem. It wasn't long before we were crossing Mesquite, then talking with Executive before spooling into the pattern at GPM. I like the field I fly out of a lot, but T48, is like stepping back to a simpler, more honest time. Put it on your list of places to fly to, at 3344 feet and nice grass, anyone can land there. You'll be glad you did.
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
I was out at Arlington this morning around 11 or so. I was killing time until a test at 1 at UTA.

It was lightly misting, then it changed to a light rain, drumming quietly on the roof of the car. I watched a few planes come and go. The field was VFR for a while. A few biz jets arrived and were parked. After a bit a pilot walked out to his bizjet and popped open the door to start setting things up for a departure. The clouds, were indistinct, you couldn't see anything up that wasn't white. Featureless. I'd not have been able to tell you what the ceiling was. Looking off in the distance you could see a few striations in the cloud layers, but I'd be willing to bet that if you'd been up, it'd have been a VERY indistinct horizon. After a bit the rain picked up some, still, the ceiling was indistinct. I thought about the few times I've flown in the rain, wondering how the paint on 508 ever stayed on the plane. What it was like to grease on a landing on a wet runway, it's the weirdest feeling I've ever had on a landing. A flash caught my eye, the beacon on top of the tower had started winking at me, green, white, green, white. That indistinct ceiling must have dropped in the rain, a nudge of the METAR widget on the iPhone confirmed it, it was now down to 800. Still couldn't see the cloud base, it was smooth and featureless...

Made me think more about the IFR, about the pilots who can fly in that great featureless white...

It was a peaceful hour I spent watching the weather until I left for my test. Everyone should take five (or more!) sometimes and just hang out at the fence and watch the world pass every once in a while. It's pretty good therapy.
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
If you ever want to really get this stuff... teach it...

My class went well today.
I might just get the hang of teaching this stuff ;)

For the first time I think I successfully explained weight and balance to people the first time through.
The photocopied handout from the 152 PIM I made for them was very useful and we worked some problems..

Then I taught them how to use the paper e6b flight computer...
Nobody had ever used a circular slide rule (and it'd been a while for me) but they were all amazed at how easy it was to really use..
I walked them through several problems. Then pointed out how there was a built in cheat sheet on the front of the e6b.
All good stuff.. They can use some more practice with it (as can I ) but are doing well.

Then we delved into pilotage and dead reckoning. So I taught them the basics on figuring a course on a chart..
I had them snap a line, pick out a checkpoint.
Then how to figure their course with their plotter, that was fun, but they got it in the end.
Then how to adjust it based on isogonic lines to get their magnetic heading when they flew on a calm wind day. (wind triangles are for another day!!!)

THEN I blew their mind.
I asked them.. how far was it between the two points...
Pointed at the scale on their plotter, they got the idea, measured it with the scale and they wrote it down..
I then asked them.. you are flying at 100 knots, how long will it take you to get from this airport to that one (on their line)
They blinked owlishly at me....
I smiled, said... look at the front of your e6b, the answer is there...
Then they realized they had two of the three pieces needed for the time/distance problem, turned the dials and lined things up and read out the answer...
I swear, the room got brighter, I saw 3 light bulbs light up in the room over their heads....

that is the best thing to see/feel :)

we ended on that note.
Next up is VORs, that'll be a fun one for them (chuckle)

They said that of all the things that frightened them about the course the paper e6b was the biggest fear for them.
That'd I'd tamed the tiger for them today, they couldn't hardly believe it worked.
I told them that nearly everybody hates the e6b when first exposed to it
But with a bit of practice, it comes together

a good day
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
Starting the 19th I start teaching another private pilot groundschool.
15 class sessions over a span of 7 weeks.

Someday I'm going to get over the nerves I always have leading up to it...
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
Monday morning was a holiday at work, a friend called and said let's go flying!

Now how am I to turn that down. We went down to KAQO, LLano Texas and tried Cooper BBQ. I know battles are waged over this, but I still think Hard 8 out of KSEP has better bbq than Cooper. It was still a fun flight in the 172. Heath flew the leg down, I flew home. The video is his takeoff at Grand Prairie and landing at LLano.

Lots of fun!

slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
The part 61 rewrite! We've been waiting ages!! YEARS for it!!!

I just found it on the faa site tonight!

so looking on page 42533 of the notes on the document on the FAA site.. they say..

"Therefore, this final rule provides for commercial pilot certification for single engine airplane, helicopter, gyroplane, powered-lift, and airship ratings to be performed either solo or while performing the duties of PIC with an authorized instructor aboard."

Now, based on an original reading of the ME Comm reading before with a couple of CFI's, even though my class III medical restricts me from flying at night due to my color vision problem, this would allow me to act perform duties of PIC with my instructor on board and be able to fulfill the requirements to sit for the test.

If so, then there is nothing holding me back from the CFI!!

I've got a couple of close cfi friends/rule mongers right now reading it over to see if it's true.

I know I must sound overly excited by this, but if it's true, it opens the commercial and CFI to me!!!
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
even if only for a few sparse minutes...

My original plans, A and then B both fell through for this morning, and then it got hot.

Late this afternoon though my thoughts were pulled back to the sky...
It's the Fourth of July.. A time of celebration...
the rest )
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
it's been hot around here lately....
what's the best thing to do when it's hot outside?

You go to the beach!
Kathy and I had been kicking the idea around again this summer and decided to finally just do it!

Up early Saturday morning, I watched a watercolor dawn as I started to get the plane ready to fly. We were off the ground by 7 am and winging our way down to IWS so that I could drop off a machine with a friend. En route Kathy and the plane flew great. A hand-full of clouds as we got close to Houston we had to go under. At 1.9 hours we touched the ground at IWS in the Traveler. I met my friend who'd NEVER been to a general aviation airport before, she'd been having fun that morning watching the planes come and go and was surprised at how friendly folks were there. I don't know if I will ever get her up in light plane, but she seems to look more favorably on them today. The crew at IWS knows what customer service is all about. They parked us and by the time we had the canopy open they were asking if we needed any fuel, a car, or anything else. I've never seen a refuel happen so fast. Extremely professional and courteous to us little piston guys. I give them a big hand!
and the rest of the day! )
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
About freaking time! This just in via email from AOPA...

The inspector general of the Homeland Security Department issued a finding on Wednesday that the terrorism threat posed by general aviation is "limited and mostly hypothetical." In response to a Houston TV news report, Richard Skinner said TSA guidelines, "coupled with voluntary measures taken by owners and operators of aircraft and facilities, provide baseline security for aircraft based at general aviation sites." In preparing the report, Skinner's staff visited a mix of large and small GA airports across the country. "The current status of [general aviation] operations does not present a serious homeland security vulnerability requiring TSA to increase regulatory oversight of the industry," Skinner's report concluded.

Maybe this means no more new and obnoxious regulations to come our way for a change..

I know, I know...

But at least they are now on record of saying the threat is "limited and mostly hypothetical"
slipstreamsurfr: (Default)
I got to do something this morning that I've always wanted to be able to say I did.

I took a flight before I had to be at work at the office this morning.
(I know, you all hate me so now!)
The entire patrol with pictures! )
Life doesn't get much better folks.
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
Seen the new AOPA save GA program with Harrison Ford?


I've seen the ad on the website. Nicely done. Pulls some of right strings for folks.

Sometimes I think we need an I'm GA ad program, sort of like Microsoft's I'm a PC program. Showing everyday pilots. Everyone from the teens/college students, to the middle age pilot who would rather fly a plane than keep a boat. Folks who work a 9 to 5, or service industry, job who takes a plane out on the weekend. Students, learning to fly.

Show the crop dusters after a days spraying, show the Lifestar helicopter pilots, show the CFIs and their students, show your air patrol police. Leave out the fat cats for a change. The problem with picking people with recognizable names is that they are perceived wealthy.

It's a perception problem. The general public has a hard time believing that anyone can really afford/learn, to fly a light plane. I hear it all the time at the office, "How can you afford it? Isn't it REALLY expensive?"

Until we can find a way to combat that problem, we will always be marginalized by the public as rich fat cats who SHOULD be taxed.

That's my thoughts on it...
What do you guys think?
slipstreamsurfr: (4gr)
After more than a month there is some possible movement on fixing the low rpm issue on the club 172. The owner finally agreed to take it back to the old a&p who used to do all of our maintenance and he thinks he knows what the problem is. That's a lot better than the 'new' guy has done.

Would be nice to have a high wing option to fly again soon. As much as I like flying Kat's low wing Grumman Traveler the Skyhawk is just roomier inside for my tall frame.

There's not been a lot of flying the last couple of months. The weather has been too bad most weekends for me to fly, or I've not had a plane available. I did get a chance to fly Craig's little Piper Colt a couple weeks ago. It's a neat, funky, little plane. Much roomier inside than I'd thought.

Most likely another washout of a weekend for flying for me. 4gr is still down, and I am pretty sure that Kat has taken the Grumman to Houston to visit her dad this weekend.

Maybe NEXT weekend!


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