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About 80% of general aviation aircraft fly using Lycoming engines. Clearing the trees at the end of the runway. Leaving 4500ft for 6500ft. Maintaining airflow and generating lift across the wings. All are impossible without a reliable engine. Lycoming powers my training aircraft and so fuels my quest for a private pilot certificate. This blog is a record of my thoughts and experiences on life, flight, and learning.

25 August 2005


I flew this morning around 7:15AM, a much better way to start the day than the "Process Change du Jour" meeting. I think that someday I shall move to Montana, wake up to a large american breakfast, and fly my aircraft from state to state. Do they let you do that? Yeah, maybe if the security of our homeland doesn't depend upon it.

But, I digress....

5 landings this morning, and a go around in 0.9 hours of flight. It was fantastic weather, very smooth air. I loved it - normally my flying has consisted of late afternoon thermals & thunderstorm dodging. I was able to set up a couple of very nice landings, speaking my intentions to the barren Coshocton UNICOM wasteland. Sometimes I wish for some cool traffic - like a jet or a couple of experiementals with similar N-numbers to break up the monotony of announcing my flying intentions to the empty air. C'mon, people....fly some more!

I found myself rather high (800ft AGL) on the final leg of my 2nd landing, which I probably would've tried to put down mid-way down the runway if I hadn't read the most recent AOPA Flight Training article which recommended to make a go around if the approach wasn't just right. So, I rode the approach down to about 100ft AGL, slowly applied power, gradually raised the flaps and made a go-around. The next landing, I concentrated harder and greased it.


22 August 2005

Our Town

From the air, with the right light, Coshocton doesn't look half bad:).

Solo Flight

Yeah, I know that it's not breaking news for some, but I think that the best way to start my blog would be to recount my solo flight experience. It took place in a 1969 Cessna 172 Skyhawk (Kilo model), which I will call 6-Golf on this blog. I landed three times, conditions were hot and hazy (Altimeter 30.14, Density altitude 2500ft, winds calm, 28°C). I didn't get the ceremonial "shirt-tail cut-off", but it still was a momentous occasion in my life. My instructor exited the aircraft and I flew the pattern, suddenly hearing every creak, engine vibration, and feeling every nosewheel shimmy with acute sensitivity. I'd only had 8.4hrs of dual instruction this year so it was a pretty quick solo.

Now, not to mislead anyone on what it might take to solo, I have been thinking about this moment on and off for the last 20 years and I've probably had about 30 hours of 2nd seat time in the last year.

As a little boy, I used to sit across the street from Don Scott Airport (OSU) and watch student pilots perform touch and gos in C152s for hours, hoping to get a glimpse of a corporate jet, like a Citation III or maybe a Dassault Falcon. I still have a few small stacks of photos that show a barren field with a speck somewhere in the frame barely resembling an aircraft. I paid for my own film development as a kid, so it must've been a significant aircraft for me to capture it on film. I recall poring over a dog-eared copy of "A Field Guide to Airplanes of North America" for endless hours, drawing aircraft to sharpen my recognition skills, identifying everything that flew overhead. I loved planes and read everything I could get my hands on that gave information about aviation. I knew that someday, somehow, I wanted to be a pilot. I'm just thankful that I have this opportunity to join that small group of old men that sit around the FBO and watch planes all day. I can't wait:).