Hangar Flying

Discussion in 'Fred's Barcalounge' started by Synchro, Feb 3, 2019.

  1. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    The Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, Big Bopper thread (http://www.gretsch-talk.com/threads/r-i-p-buddy-holly-richie-valenz-and-big-bopper.188006/) has diverged a bit into airplane talk, so I thought it might be a good idea to dedicate a thread to hangar flying.
     
  2. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Age:
    69
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    I didn't realize hangars were aerodynamic.

    Put a big enough engine on a brick and it'd fly, too.
     
    ruger9, pmac11 and Jockabilly like this.
  3. thunder58

    thunder58 I Bleed Orange

    Age:
    60
    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Hanger flying ?? ...... Is that were a guy jumps off a cliff while strapped into a big kite ??.. have a good time ... I'll wait right here
     
  4. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Age:
    69
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Synchro, is hangar flying similar to beer30/beer call at the OClub? Pilot shop talk?
     
  5. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    I only flew, as an active pilot, for a relatively short time, but I miss it greatly.

    Like every pilot, I had some interesting experiences. I detailed my one brush with low ceilings in the Buddy Holly thread, but that was not my hairiest experience. At the outset, let me state that I was in my 20s, when I flew, and many of the decisions I made back then would not be made the same way these days. I used to think nothing of flying a single engine airplane at night. Night flight is very enjoyable, the air tends to be calm and it’s beautiful beyond words, but with only one engine, an engine failure means the distinct possibility of a nighttime, off-field landing, which is not assured to be survivable.

    So here’s the story. In 1979, the Beech Fly-In was held at Colorado Springs Municipal, which is a joint-use airfield which also serves Peterson AFB. The flight school where I got my license had just signed a leaseback for a Beech Sierra 200, a retractable single with a constant speed prop. I had planned to zip out to COS, attend the fly-in, visit my sister (who lived there at the time) and fly back to Minneapolis a day or two later, but we were socked in. You could see clear skies to the west of town, but it was solid IFR in town and I was ground-bound. That strange weather persisted for about a week and I missed the fly-in, but still wanted to take a long cross-country and visit my sister.

    With solid IFR, my instructor, who had guided me through my Private and had more recently been putting me through the paces of my Commercial maneuvers, had been unable to teach any students. I decided to cut a deal; I’d pay him dual rates for the IFR portion of the flight and for the VFR portion he’d be a passenger. He’d get a few hours pay out of the deal and he had nothing else going on anyhow, so it was a good compromise. We got to the “The Springs” late in the afternoon and I offered to take my sister and her family up for a hop. It was still light when we went up, and we circumnavigated the metro area, watching as the lights came on and the sun went down.

    When there was nothing left to see, I called the tower and was vectored south of town for a straight-in to 35L. It was a cinch approach, calm air, good visibility and good approach lighting. Nothing left to do but pull back the power and drop the gear. That’s when things got interesting.

    When I did my first power reduction, the prop governor control snapped to full decrease and the engine immediately began losing RPMs. I firewalled everything with the heel of my palm and kept the fires lit, but I still had to find the ground, hopefully on favorable terms. By brother-in-law was in the right seat, so I deputized him to hold the governor in full increase, while I operated the throttle. We landed without incident, and taxied back the the tie down. The next morning, I mentioned it to Ken, my instructor, and he seemed unconcerned. He suggested that we take extra pains during run-up, so we obtained clearance to taxi to the runup area for 17R. Several planes came in behind us as we taxied north and when we reached the runup area there were about three planes behind us.

    When we ran up, the mags checked fine, but when I pulled the prop governor back it slammed to full decrease with a vengeance and the engine died. That plane wasn’t going anywhere without attention, and that was before I got my A&P, so we taxied to the Beech dealer, which included at least three engine stalls as the governor did its trick. We probably tied up the runway for nearly 10 minutes and heard some unsympathetic comments coming over the the tower frequency. The dealer found a loose clamp on the prop governor control cable and it was corrected in a matter of minutes.

    We flew back to North Platte NE without incident but after I landed I had to taxi back up the runway to the FBO, because there were no taxiways. I announced my intentions on the Unicom frequency, pirouetted the Beech and got a very good view of the undercarriage of a Skyhawk. As it turns out, he had lost his radios and didn’t know I was there, nor had he heard my radio call. To his credit, he managed to avoid and accident and apologized after he had completed his landing and pulled in to refuel.

    We finished up with an IFR flight across Nebraska and cancelled IFR somewhere west of Minneapolis. After landing, I told the A&P at the flight school about then prop governor control problem and it turns out he knew all about it, but allowed the plane to go out anyhow. I didn’t say a word, but I was disgusted, to say the least. It was a 10 minute fix, at the most, but had the engine died on final to COS my parents could have lost both their children, a grandchild and their son-in-law.

    Decades of life experience and maturation later, I would never have made a night flight in a single, especially in a heavily populated are and certainly not with an entire generation of the family on board. The hubris of youth has long since left and I’m much more inclined to accept that engine failures can happen at any time and a pilot should plan accordingly. No more single engine night ops for me.
     
  6. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    Pretty much.
     
  7. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    C’mon, don’t be a chicken. :)
     
  8. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Age:
    69
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    It's not the fall that gets ya….
     
    desertfox4 and thunder58 like this.
  9. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    To paraphrase Douglas Adams, flying is the skill, or more correctly the knack, of throwing yourself at the ground and missing. :)
     
    ruger9, wabash slim and desertfox4 like this.
  10. GVDobler

    GVDobler Synchromatic

    677
    May 15, 2011
    Las Vegas
    Synchro
    I did similar and by the time I actually went for an instrument rating I had more "in cloud" time logged than the instructor that took me through to my rating. I gathered about 2500 hours, an ATP and double I before selling my last plane and kinda giving it up. Lots of great flying over the years.
     
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  11. desertfox4

    desertfox4 Synchromatic

    534
    Aug 19, 2010
    Cottonwood, AZ.
    BE5CC223-A089-4874-ACFC-4E551C363EDF.jpeg C374459F-E759-4454-87AD-14185D6B3A4A.jpeg 4365EEC0-7263-4658-8313-A49B08E6B954.jpeg 99905703-6F06-4513-92A4-974822A48917.jpeg Some photos of last Friday morning’s sunrise breakfast out in the desert of S.W. Arizona.
    I should have packed my Martin acoustic or my Gretsch Jim Dandy. Sat around and swapped aviation stories
    with a great bunch of aviators. Some in those chairs have tens of thousands of flight hours in everything from crop dusters to military jets and airliners. Great stories.
     
    ruger9 likes this.
  12. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    I never finished my Commercial. In the economic slowdown of 1979-1980, I lost momentum and never regained it. It’s been a long time, but I’ve always felt that I would only fly again if I could readily afford to fly enough to remain highly proficient. I sure miss it, however.
    I figured you’d be joining in. If you ever have a gathering in these parts, please let me know. I’d love to drop by.
     
    desertfox4 likes this.
  13. BrianW

    BrianW Synchromatic

    636
    Oct 21, 2014
    Vancouver Island
    Oh my, how could I not have seen this thread til now? I will spare y'all stories from my youth.. don't really need to reiterate how stupid I was :rolleyes:

    Maybe the times I got intercepted by Migs while in a KingAir someday, lol
     
    desertfox4 likes this.
  14. new6659

    new6659 Gretschie

    271
    Dec 10, 2018
    Southwestern Ontario
    You guys are making me a bit afraid of flying!
     
  15. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Age:
    69
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Wrong place at the wrong time?
     
  16. BrianW

    BrianW Synchromatic

    636
    Oct 21, 2014
    Vancouver Island
    Well, there I was - one churning, one burning, upside down with nothing on the clock but the makers name - and still climbing!
    (Traditional beginning to a "line shoot" lol)

    Seriously, at the time I was crossing the cease fire line between Pakistan and N India about 3 times a week. One of the intercept occurances happened when we lost communication with the Indian Air Force tower controller after making initial contact prior to the "line" (it was their radio in the tower that quit) So, as we crossed we were considered a threat by the radar controllers at another facility. The forward fighter base is only 39 nautical miles from the line so they don't take chances when there is a transgression - hence the intercept. I was kind of surprised a Mig 21 could actually fly as slow as us.... but one dropped in front of us by about 100 yards, and another was the same behind. They escorted us to the airport. Side note: we couldn't turn around at the line or Pakistan would have considered us a "threat". Anything within about a 10 mile band straddling the line doing something unexpected was considered a possible hostile.

    Right place, right time. Just a communication failure.
     
  17. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Age:
    69
    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    That had to induce maximum pucker.
     
  18. BrianW

    BrianW Synchromatic

    636
    Oct 21, 2014
    Vancouver Island
    Pucker factor about 9.9...

    Surprisingly, my FO (copilot) started to laugh and asked "what are they doing?" While hopefully avoiding any political involvement, I have to add that this was an area/time that had an average body count of somewhere in the neighbourhood of 2,000 per annum, "Civilian" and military casualties. I asked my FO if he thought those long skinny things with fins hanging under the wings were fuel tanks. "Nope, they look like missiles". I guess he just didn't get it.
    That little episode cost me all the black label induced goodwill I had built....
     
    desertfox4 likes this.
  19. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Sorry Vista
    Admin Post
    That’s enough to degrade the quality of anyone’s day. :)

    C’mon, Desert Fox, we need some good flyin’ stories.
     
    desertfox4 likes this.
  20. BrianW

    BrianW Synchromatic

    636
    Oct 21, 2014
    Vancouver Island
    I ain't no Desert Fox, but I did manage to fly from Pakistan via Iran and the rest of the Middle East to Cairo with no clearances for overflight or tech stops. I was given fax'd copies of clearances, but they neglected to tell me they had all expired a week before the flight. You can bet that cost a few brand new $100 bills!
    Ironically the biggest problem was through Italy enroute to Scotland.

    From Scotland to Rekyavik was not bad , except we lost the gps for the first hour out and the weather in Iqaluit (Frobisher) was minimums in a snowstorm. I had given myself an hour to get gps or return to Rek - the North Atlantic in December was not where I wanted to be using just a compass!
     
    desertfox4 likes this.
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