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kenish
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Fuel Systems
kenish   7/22/2013 7:00:11 PM
NO RATINGS
The throttle control on most single engine piston planes is a polished shaft with a knob on the end.  It goes through a panel fitting with an adjustable friction lock.  The "working end" is connected to the carb linkage via a cable inside a sheath.

At the local airport, a flight instructor pulled the power to idle on climb-out to check the student's reaction.   The cable broke and the knob, shaft, and part of the cable pulled out of the instrument panel.   The carb linkage is spring-loaded to go full-throttle if the cable breaks....but in this case the end of the cable snagged the sheath and held the throttle closed.   Fortunately they were able to land on a golf course past the end of the runway.  The only damage was furrows in a few hundred feet of turf.

I heard that was the last time the instructor simulated an engine failure at low altitude.

NWPilot
User Rank
Iron
Re: Fuel Systems
NWPilot   7/22/2013 11:18:56 AM
NO RATINGS
Your examiner was half right.  A plugged pitot tube will mess with your ASI, but it will have no impact on the altimeter.  That runs off your static vent.  Oh, and the planes I fly have an alternate static source, so even having that plugged would be no big deal.

 

And I agree about the pre-flight.  A pain, takes a few minutes, but can save you from further pain later in the day.  I've grounded planes more tha once because they failed something during pre-flight.

 

John E
User Rank
Silver
Re: Close attention pays off
John E   7/22/2013 10:23:40 AM
NO RATINGS
A few pilot friends of mine have a very simple rule for the checkout flight after a any maintenance; the mechanic comes with them.  THis gives the mechanic a little extra incentive to to get it right, as well as the oportunity to verify a few things he might not otherwise be able to check.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Close attention pays off
Elizabeth M   7/22/2013 8:55:01 AM
NO RATINGS
Indeed, RICKZ28, we should carefully inspect any vehicle we own as much as possible, even if it's not the type, like a plane or a motorcycle, where the slightest malfunction can cause deaths. I think we take our automobiles for granted sometimes because generally they are safe enough that small malfunctions aren't the difference between life and death. But sometimes even in cars, they are, so we should all be more careful, even amid our busy lives.

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Hibernation
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   7/21/2013 11:29:57 PM
NO RATINGS
Is that the same Cessna as in your profile picture-? ,,,,I cannot imagine the trauma you may have suffered had those bees and wasps gotten stirred-up and vented into the cabin.  You could've been killed; stung to death before losing control and crashing.  And I thought birds were hazardous to jet intakes!  This is a brand-new threat to me, seeing how many moderators have direct experience with hornets!  

bobjengr
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Fuel Systems
bobjengr   7/19/2013 4:42:31 PM
NO RATINGS
My instructor had a long flying career with the only accident; stepping on empty oil can, falling and breaking a leg.   He had several expressions that were real keepers:

·         You always want to be down here wishing you were up there and never up there wishing you were down here.  This was in reference to weather conditions.

·         There are old pilots and bold pilots but not too many old bold pilots.

·         My favorite--If blood's brown--- I'm dying.   (This was in reference to a cabin fire on a cross-country flight.) He obviously survived but indicated that even during his Navy career, this was the most harrowing event.   

Like most of your instructors, he was a solid proponent of adequate pre-flight procedures.  We even developed our own checklist   --completely over and above Piper recommendations.  These were based upon his experiences and those safety "rules" he wanted to impart to rookies like me.  I certainly agree a "pre-flight" is absolutely necessary when taking trip in our automobiles.  I have a mechanic I go to every 3,000 miles. Oil change, lube up the rotating joings, air cleaner, etc etc.  An ounce of prevention truly is worth a pound of cure.

jpratch
User Rank
Gold
Re: Fuel Systems
jpratch   7/19/2013 4:01:01 PM
NO RATINGS
I, too had a thorough instructor who took me up on days when it was marginal VFR, gusty cross winds and just lousy flying weather in Maryland. He would say "you won't solo today, but you will become a better pilot, I'd rather you see this stuff first time with me in the right seat". He regularly put me "under the hood" and gave me "unusual attitudes" to recover from. On my long cross country flight, as I was completing the flight, I was caught in an unforecast snow storm as I flew the end of the trip over Annapolis to Fort Meade. visibility fell from seven miles to four miles within minutes and then just minutes from landing, it became to true IFR. At 1100 feet, I could see the ground about well enough to navigate "in the present" not the future. But Bob had put me through enough lousy weather that I could fly the plane on the gauges AND still talk to Tipton Tower at the same time. With a little help from Baltimore approach, I spotted TAF and landed without incident. When I called my instructor and told him about it, he said "good experience" and "you were prepared". And for only 28 hours total time, I was and did not become a statistic.

During my FAA check ride, as we returned to Freeway Airpark, the examiner tore a flight plan into two circles which he placed over air speed and altimeter gauges. He said you'll get this from a plugged pitot tube ten times before you'll have an engine quit. Now go land. I landed the plane; it was not the prettiest or the smoothest but he said "you pass".

There is an old saying that "If you eat a toad first thing in the morning, it will be the worst thing to happen to you all day long". With flying, the preparation, the checking and inspecting before flight is often a pain, but it should be the worst thing to happen to you until long after you land.

tekochip
User Rank
Platinum
Hibernation
tekochip   7/19/2013 2:52:34 PM
NO RATINGS
OK, I have an aircraft story too.
 
I bought a 172M from upstate Ney York.  The poor hangar queen had been sitting outside for decades and hadn't seen much air time.  I gave the old girl a thorough preflight before taking her home to my unheated hangar and then a few days later I flew her to be painted.  It was January and darn cold as I flew the hour and a half from Chicago to the Wisconsin Dells, but the plane was, and is, a dream to fly.
 
A couple months later I picked the plane up from the paint shop, and upon entering the hangar I saw the hangar floor covered with bees and hornets.  As the plane was pulled into the hangar and warmed up for painting hundreds of bees and hornets woke up from their Winter resting homes and started buzzing around the hangar.  The greatest number of nests were inside the air vents.  Of course it had been too cold for me to open the vents during my two Winter flights, and also far too cold for the critters to wake up and explore.  I paid a lot for that paint job, but it was worth every nickel to have the painter be my exterminator.  Had they woken up in flight I might have had a little trouble navigating.


KGround
User Rank
Iron
Re: Close attention pays off
KGround   7/19/2013 2:32:09 PM
NO RATINGS
In my experience if you are hiring a mechanic to diagnose a problem and are not certain of the cause it is much better to avoid saying something like "it sounds like the xyz is loose".  Much better to just describe the symptoms as you perceive them. Making a stamement like the former will prejudice the troubleshooting process of even the best mechanic toward xyz being the fault. 

There has been some discussion here about driver competence and who should an shouldn't have licenses to drive.  Soon we won't have to worry about that becasue we will have cars that drive themselves. 

(And back in the 1960s the science magazines were all saying that by now we would all have flying cars.)

Personally I can't wait to see the fun when hackers get at those self driving cars and when the initial software bugs are exposed the hard way...    

KGround
User Rank
Iron
Re: Close attention pays off
KGround   7/19/2013 2:23:19 PM
NO RATINGS
Since we are telling flying stories here I have two more examples of when a perfectly functional airplane can become dangerous.

The first time I flew a plane with multiple fuel tanks I had of course studied the flight manual in detail.  Things like not selecting auxiliary tanks before running an hour of fuel out of the mains (because excess fuel returns to the main tank regardless of the source and will just be blown overboard if there isn't room for it), not attempting to land or take off on the aux tanks (because there is no backup electric fuel pump on those tanks and because the fuel inlet may not be submerged at all flight attitudes). So off I go, fly an hour into my cross country trip, flip both fuel selectors over to 'Aux' and fly along for another two hours until an engine begins to falter. No problem, just switch back to themain tank and tickle the electric boost pump a little and all will be well. As I reached up to switch tanks the second engine quit too.  Since I had put both engines to Aux at the same time they both ran out at the same time.  Exciting for a few moments, but since this happened at cruising altitude not a big deal. You can believe that I won't do that again.

I had brought that plane back from the dead - when /I got it it had been sitting more or less abandoned for several years. So before the first flight it had a very thorough going over both by myself and by a very good  mechanic authorized by the FAA to perform annual inspections.  We checked everything we could think of and ran the airplane up and down the runway almost up to takeoff speed several times. On the first actual flight just about the time the wheels broke ground and the speed was picking up a bit to around 120 or so a fist sized live wasp nest, wasps included, blew out of one of the air vents and landed in my lap. fortunately it was pretty cold that day and the wasps were both slow and just as confused and disoriented as I was by all this, so I missed getting stung. 

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