Instructor Blog 1 – Dual Nav Ex

February 28th, 2007

I was called up by the local flight school with a request to assist with a PPL cross-country navigation flight. This didn’t happen often, I mean they called me often, but normally it was for advanced training or for flight tests. Ab-initio is great fun and I jumped at the chance, especially for a navigation exercise. I find next to pre-solo circuit training it is the biggest learning curve and the most rewarding part of a private pilot’s license. Additionally it is very structured and objective in assessment – I mean you either get to the destination or you don’t, and all of the en route tasks are of great importance to the mission. A private pilot student normally completes four navigation flights, two dual flights with and instructor and two solo flights, flown alternately, although each is basically a test for the next phase as if the pilot does not successfully complete a dual exercise another dual exercise is completed prior to being allowed to fly solo. If a pilot messes up on a solo ex, well if he/she still gets back safely, a thorogh debrief is completed and one extra- if not more- dual session is scheduled.

This particular flight was the student’s second dual navigation exercise. This to me was even more fun, as all the teaching is completed on the first flight and the second flight mostly consists of sitting back and letting the student make mistakes.

Cessna Training Manuals

Dont press the big red button

February 24th, 2007

You might have seen The Farside joke about the pilots and the big red button, it goes something like this:
“Help, theres a big red button flashing on the dash, we’re gonna die!!!”
“Oh-No its OK its just the intercom.”

Just a bit of mortal embarrassment, if it would be that easy…

While flying a B737 into Capetown one fine late disturbed evening, the crew, after an uneventful day were preparing for an approach. A weather report recieved indicated CAVOK (Clear and Visual OK, or in other words mighty fine). Enhanced by the late evening weariness on the third sector or a 12 hour duty period, and the positive weather report a full IFR briefing and panel setup was omitted.

Winter Tyres and Other Concerns

February 24th, 2007

Do you know how it is when you get to work and everyone is complaining about some company issue. Things are always too much or too little, and often they are personal irritations rather than safety issues. My friend had a good answer when asked what concerned him the most he replied “At the moment I am concerned about my winter tyres. When I have winter tyres on my car I can only drive a maximum speed of 210kph on the Autobahn. We come to work, we fly well maintained aircraft, we have good taining, OK shifts, and we get paid OK, so right now my biggest concern is my winter tyres”. Next time I hear someone complaining about something trivial or always wanting something better than what they have, I think of the winter tyres, it puts things in perspective most of the time. Fight when there is a reason to fight, provide constructive input when you can, and the rest of the time enjoy it.

Locked Doors

February 6th, 2007

Behind closed doors

Locked cockpits were supposed to make aircraft more secure. But as Andrew Weir and David Leigh discovered, there is growing evidence that this practice actually puts lives at risk

Tuesday December 19, 2006
The Guardian

Seat Jumping

February 6th, 2007

What is it with some of our aviation wannabe’s? Can any of you deal with the attitude, well I have my comm/tower/whatever exactly six months now, and I just must get an approach rating/multi rating/turbine rating etc. And more importantly is it safe?

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