Home > Lessons > Back in the Cockpit Again!

Back in the Cockpit Again!

Well it’s been a bit over 2 weeks since I’ve flown…man I missed it!

Big event, I have a new instructor, my old one moved away (I don’t believe I was the cause 😉

Anyway my new instructor is great! I had some trepidation about breaking in and getting used to a new instructor but all was alleviated after today’s lesson. This guy actually communicates MUCH better  and tells me stuff like “great” and “good landing” and just all around let’s me know much better what I’m doing right or wrong. I will miss the Yiddish kibbutzing I did with my old instructor but so it goes.

Anyway we took off from KGAI and headed to KFDK to do a couple of patterns. He checked me out doing slow flight on the way, which I did just fine. KFDK was not busy at all and I haven’t been there much which is a bit unusual for most of the students as it’s the closest airport to KGAI so that was nice also. KFDK’s larger runway is 5/23 and due to wind direction we were all set for runway 23. As we approach we hear, and see a jet calling for his own departure on runway 5. So we just join the pattern on the base for runway 5, but we were fairly close in for a very short final. The jet is gone and we come in for 5 then my instructor says “do a go around” since we would have burned up a lot of the runway and more importantly as he explained, the jet didn’t really care about that wind direction he just wanted to be pointed in the right direction, how nice for him. I suspect my instructor also wanted to see how I handle a go around. We do a go around and then as we turn to the downwind pull a 180 in order to get to the downwind for runway 23 our original destination. We come in fine and I do a good landing.

We do a touch n go and do another pattern, on the downwind we do a simulated engine out this time and I pull up the nose to hit 65 knots and I misunderstand about the flaps ( thinking that I shouldn’t use the flaps as part of the emergency exercise ) and come in too fast to the runway. Instructor says I should have used flaps and I say I thought I wasn’t supposed to, no big deal we do another go around and do the engine out simulation again and I hit it just dandy. He is pleased as am I.

In addition he teaches me more about the trim of the plane. I’ve almost never used the trim except when flying straight and level to trim the plane. Well, as I now know, you can use the trim anytime when climbing, on approach to land, anytime, to ease the force you need to apply to the yoke. Was fun fiddling with it and that was new. On the way back I also explain how for my cross country trips I always used the GPS and just followed the magenta line. At which point he switches the GPS so that I couldn’t see the magenta line 😉 More interestingly he shows me how to “chase the line” with the VOR instrument, which I’ve done before, but I never knew that you could chase the line via GPS. So the line is oriented to the waypoint of the GPS not a real VOR on the ground…it was cool!

We head back to KGAI, land and that’s that…a very successful trip. I greased one of the landings and all the landings were pretty good, even the one in KFDK which had a significant cross wind. Anyway…got a other lesson tomorrow…onward!

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