View Full Version : My first 2-Place Solo!
07-13-2004, 08:28 AM
Finally, I have soloed my 2-place!
It has taken a long time to get to this point and I don't know what I would have done without the great testing environment at 4I7 and Chapter 34.
I only get to go to 4I7 on average one day every 2-3 weeks so things progress slowly.
My instructor Gary has up to now been with me for my initial test flights and helped me correct trim and balance problems. Then I had an ignition coil go bad on me (boy am I am glad he was with me when that went out!) which kept the engine from running properly over 3500RPM.
This weekend I replaced the coil with a 3-rd party 'performance' coil and she flew great!
Gary flew the runway with me for about ten runs down the runway. Then he had me take her up to altitude and made me do engine-out exercises. I guess he thought I made survivable landings because after we taxied back to the hanger he signed me off to solo the two place!
I have to tell you flying this 2-place is a humbling experience. My single place though once a handful to fly is now like an extension of my body. I can engine-idle land it on the numbers in a crosswind without a second thought using almost no brain cells above the spinal cord. Landing the two-place although not a white-knuckled experience, is quite ungraceful and 'putting where I want it' amounts to about 100 feet of where I want it!
The body gets grabbed by the wind. The CLT config and the body make it more difficult to judge flair distance and at 700lbs she wants to drop out at a much higher airspeed.
I feel like a nuebee again...
Well enough whining... On with the pictures!
Even though I am an agnostic it seems the higher powers wanted to give me a sign of their approval. After I soloed, a rain shower passed by then check this out. A full end-to-end DOUBLE rainbow and just as I went to take a picture of my gyro under the rainbows a PAIR of composite fixed-wings flew by in close formation!
07-13-2004, 08:40 AM
Congratulations, Tim, and what a beautiful and fitting picture.
07-13-2004, 09:21 AM
Great Going Tim!!! I wanna ride!
hey tim' con-grats and great picture
07-13-2004, 09:29 AM
The side by side handles very strange with a single occupant. So to keep it more like it will be when I carry a passenger and more like how it has been while testing with my instructor...
I enlisted the help of my new friend..
General P. Sand!
Though the title General is prominent on his uniform he must have been a little scared to come to the airport as he soiled my car on the way :eek: So I wrapped him up in garbage bags.
07-13-2004, 09:31 AM
Here is a close up of my co-pilot for the next 40 or so hours!
07-13-2004, 09:32 AM
Here he is flying us over the PRA hangar.. :D
07-13-2004, 09:40 AM
I can't wait until I can share my gyro experience with all of my friends ( well though friends brave enough ;) )
I was hoping to have enough hours in to take my check ride at Mentone but alas it is not to be. I am still short a x-country trip solo and duel and take-offs and landings at a towered airport.
I'll give you a ride as soon as I get my ticket and have at least 120 hours flying time under my belt. I figgure my 80 hours single place plus about 40 hours additional in the two place should have me ready.
I guess I will start inviteing pilot friends first then work my way to non-pilots.
Check out this RAF that showed up at the hangar this weekend. Painted as a STAR TREK ship! The pilot as a bizzillion fixed wing hours and came up for gyro training and solo.
07-13-2004, 09:42 AM
Front View of the Star Trek RAF.
07-13-2004, 09:49 AM
Side view of flying the 2-place over Indiana.
( Chapter 34 members, if Gary asks my co-pilot General P. Sand took these pictures as I certanly don't have enough hours in the 2 place to be taking pictures... ;) )
07-13-2004, 09:58 AM
If you are browsing this thread, here is a partial answer to the question you posed in the other thread.
You asked how she climbs.
I am starting to get used to trying various RPM settings and attitudes as I take off. My best sustained climb from takeoff is this one:
Rate of climb 500-600 feet per min.
Outside temp 86 deg F
Dew Point 70 deg F
Crosswind 10 mph (gusting to 15)
Starting Altitude 850ft MSL
Density Alt 3075 feet.
I don't know if this is good or not.
I have flown a number of 2-places but I never tried to maximize climb in any of them except my Instructors TwinStarr. The twin star can climb at 70+ mph and not even break a sweat. That 160hp lycoming just chews up the air!
My single place with the massive 38hp powerplant.. I am just glad that it DOES climb!
07-13-2004, 10:01 AM
This is from Monday. I was so glad to be finally flying it I took Monday off work and drove the 6 hours round trip to fly even though the forcast was 'iffy'.
The sky was nice to me again. Although there was a strong crosswind and strong winds aloft it stayed dry.
Some dark clouds came through though! :eek:
07-13-2004, 10:04 AM
Here is a farm house near the airport. I did not stray from within sight of the runway incase of problems.
07-13-2004, 10:06 AM
Here I am turning back around after a downwind turn and going back to the airport.
I am still playing with the settings but she seems to like to cruse between 4000 and 4500 RPM from 50mph to 60mph.
07-13-2004, 10:26 AM
Oh, On the performance notes I forgot to add that I had a 140 lb 'passinger' in the form of 2 bags of General Purpose Sand and about 7 gallons of fuel.
The bottom of my instrument pod and body pod are open so I don't know if my static air is giving the VSI good feedback.
It feels like I am climbing quite fast.
07-13-2004, 04:24 PM
Who owns that Star Trek gyro? I've seen that ship before. It used to be owned, (and may still be), by a Dentist in Colville, WA. I saw it in Helena, MT 6 years ago when he had taken it to Dan Brimhall for instruction. I guess they were having a hell of a time with interference with the radio and engine. Every time they keyed the mike the engine would either quit or go to idle, (can't remember for sure which it was). Anyway, I thought that the paint job was pretty interesting but could do without the shag carpeting.
07-13-2004, 04:56 PM
The name escapes me ( I am very bad with names ) Bud Abbot?, I think, but he is a pilot from Michigan. He bought it recently in parts and then had it re-assembled. He is the guy in the pictures with the machine.
That is quite a radio problem! I have heard of engines knocking out radios but never the other way around! I don't recall them having any problems with it this weekend.
Bud was his first name I am pretty sure.
(dito on the shag)
07-13-2004, 05:05 PM
Great Pics and story Tim,
Ahhhh such timing, how could you not believe the boys "upstairs" were not giving you a wink and a nod for your accomplishment. ?
What coil failed ?
Would not happen to be an accell yellow super coil. ?
07-13-2004, 06:25 PM
I was never able to get a positive ID on the coil that failed.
Pictures are in this thread: http://www.rotaryforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1547
Some soob forum folks think it was a Ford coil but not the Escort coil.
Here is a photo of the new coil.
It is an accel super coil but I don't think it is the yellow coil you are referring to. If I am correct isn't the 'yellow coil' a canister style coil?
07-14-2004, 05:49 AM
We just read this thread. We are eating our hearts out! You sure are having your trials and tribulations (education) with this machine. We wish you the best of luck and safety to you and your fabulous AC SxS. Keep up the good work and we will see you at Mentone.
07-14-2004, 06:10 PM
That RAF is a super looking aircraft. So is yours. I haven't been following this thread. What kind of engine, please?
07-14-2004, 06:44 PM
Perhaps you have plans for paint down the road, but man...that thing looks terrific in pure white!
07-14-2004, 08:50 PM
Thank you very much. Yes it has been a long journey. If I can get my truck in shape to haul my trailer I will bring it to Mentone. :D
There is still much to do. I am kinda embarrassed to bring it as it still has so many rough edges :o . I have utilized allot of used parts and many things have yet to get touched up and painted. :( I still have many wires that need to be secured from rubbing and vibration. The GPS is still to be installed and I have not made mounting hardware for the wheel pants. I also want to upgrade the ignition as outlined by Jonathan in the Engines Thread.
She has a 2-per-rev shake :confused: but I did a cheap job of slinging the blades. If a better sling job does not help I guess I will just live with it, as I don't have a tall rotorhead to adjust the dragonwings up and down.
I am sure I am forgetting a few more things and I have some aesthetic mods I might make as well.
The pod is taking some getting used to. The windshield bends down to my nose when I start to get to about 80 mph :eek: . I miss the openness of my 'flying lawnchair'.
When I look at your pictures I am quite envious of the new parts, detail, painting and finish you are putting into yours. Half of my brain wants to ride in it to see what it is like without the pod, the other half of brain does not as I am worried I might like the open cockpit too much and then go and rip mine off. :eek:
Thanks! both the RAF and my machine have EJ-22's carbed. I have a planetary redrive and the RAF has a RAF belt redrive.
Thanks! I plan to keep it white and black. My girlfriend and I played around with Photoshop making mockup tiger shark style designs but the all white still looks best to me. I also thought of putting a large griffin on the tall tail but I never found a design I liked. The N-number and EXPERIMENTAL decals are cheap and one even started to yellow! I will replace these with better and perhaps move the EXPERIMENTAL to a new location and replace it with Air Command. After I get my private ticket I will also install some lights which I guess will be the only color on it other then some engine wires.
07-14-2004, 09:50 PM
With all of Gary's test flying, your soloing and P sand flying the machine you must be close to the magic 40 hours.
Congratulations on the machine, may you have many years of safe flying fun together.
One important thing ! Make very, very certain that the ballast cannot, in any way, shift forward.
My dear departed friend taught his son to fly a SBS Air Command and on the teenagers first solo, when he tried to flare to land, the stick was jammed. He survived a nosewheel first landing only to find his ballast weight had shifted forward and limited his aft stick travel.
This easily could have been a fatal first solo.
07-17-2004, 03:49 AM
Tim , I thought you kept it at Mentone or is that Greencastle?
Didn't anyone let you try DW's on your 447 yet?
What do you think of the 5' Skywheel Hub thing?
Are your Mc's factory yellow?
Are you camping or hoteling at Mentone? See ya there & don't let your sandbags shift!
Ps Funny thing is I think about adding an enclosure like you have. Don't be envious cause I got with everything at least $23,000 into it. 15 of that is still on a credit card( at 0% though). I don't regret it & don't even think about the money but for that I could be in a converted RAF or a Sparrowhawk almost. Then I could fly in the winter like you!
07-19-2004, 05:51 AM
We had to make so many tweeks adjustments, spring changes, cooling messing and what have you I was wondering if I would have 40 hours on it before I even got to fly it by myself!
Thanks! I hope it works well for a very long time!
Wow, thanks for the warning on the ballast! I found the seat belt harneses were not holding Mr. Sand in place very well so I added a tie-down strap to keep the bags together. After reading your post I think I might add another strap for the rest of my flying.
I have her hangared at Greencastle. Greencastle is a 6 hour round trip drive for me but worth every second thanks to the help I have gotten from Gary and the Chapter 34 crew :D . Cheap hangar rent $25/month and Chapter tools help out but the assistance and advice from other chapter members has made all the difference. I feel very sorry for anyone who has to go it alone or has an inactive chapter. :(
No DW on the 447. My 447 is at I69 here in Cincinnati and I am the only gyro here. Right now I need to get my brake problem resolved before I fly the single place any more. I can always brake with the rotor or Fred Flintstone-sytle but since there are alot of people and traffic at my airport I decieded to wait until I have my brakes fixed/replaced before I do any more flying with it.
What 5' skywheel hub thing? :confused: I have been at Mid-Ohio Vintage Motorcycle Days for the past week and I am out of touch...
MC's are red. Though my gyro is yellow and black.
I am hoteling at Mentone.
Maybe we should work out a way to make the enclosure removeable :D ? Some one here posted that they have a single place that can do this. After 30min of messing you can add or remove the pod. Then we can trade the pod back and forth as we keep seeing the grass greener on the other side! ;)
I have about 13K of my 2 place on loan too, about 6% I think... :eek:
07-19-2004, 05:56 AM
Thank Goodness for the almighty Credit card!!! And even more thanks to the great little balance transfer checks they send out all the time. Works like cash and usually has a good rate too!
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