Tuesday, July 8, 2014

N162HG 1.2 Bob

Closed pattern work at KPAO again. A couple of full stops, one practice go-around called by Bob at the last minute. Some observations:

I need to work on filtering out random distractions in the pattern, and concentrate on leveling out correctly. I think that, again, Bob is getting back into saying more, and I'm getting back into being worried that he's going to say or gesture something (like "turn base now") and letting that distract me.

I need to reduce power more while descending. I came in ridiculously steep after ridiculously high approaches almost every time. On one approach, Bob was not sure we'd even make it in, so I slipped aggressively and brought it down ... but before I congratulate myself, let me note that my speed dropped to 51 or 52 kias when I slipped, because I still don't anticipate how much I need to be stuffing the nose down when I slip.

I need to learn to apply rudder pressure and not kick. Bob noted that, on takeoffs, sometimes I'll see the plane is veering one direction, so I kick rudder and it stops veering, so then I let go of the rudder. It's not a car, notes Bob. If you want it to keep stopping veering, you need to maintain the pressure!

Surprisingly, Bob is more concerned about my random yawing during takeoffs than during landings. I'm really surprised, since I imagine my yaw on landing is horrible, but he says it's actually not that bad, I won't peel off a tire or ground loop and dig in a wing, don't worry. That's actually a big deal. A huge part of my landing anxiety has to do with worrying about the state of where the nose is pointed.

Bob noted that I seemed stressed. It's true -- I'm under a lot of stress at work right now. In fact, my wife and son are in Hawai'i but I was not able to go because of work. I hoped to console myself with more flying, but then I was so stressed on Sunday night that I didn't get much sleep and had to scrub my planned Monday afternoon lesson. I guess that was as much "flight training" as anything -- I imagine part of learning to fly is learning to decide when not to fly.

I was particularly diligent in checking under my wing to the final approach for traffic even when cleared to the active by Tower, after having heard about the recent runway incursion near-miss at Barcelona. Aviation usually requires two simultaneous screw-ups for a real disaster to happen. May all our screw-ups be singletons.

In other news, I got myself a Drift HD camera (it's in the mail...) and would like to mount it in the cockpit to take training videos. (One of the nice things about Drift is their cameras have a standard 1/4-20 tripod mount built right in). I wondered where to mount it, thinking I might want to bungee down a tripod behind and between the pilots, but it turns out "the" standard way is on the skylight behind and above the pilots; in fact, there's a little circle there on the window where other people have suctioned on their cameras. I got a suction cup mount for it from REI, but it was too heavy and had too many parts made of metal; I feared it could scratch or damage the window. I now have a RAM mount ordered, which I think is lightweight and made of plastic. Stay tuned for video footage of my horrible landings?

No comments:

Post a Comment