June 2010, Hot Rod Power Tour, Bowling Green, KY
April 24 2001, I had the opportunity to fly AOPA Air Safety Foundations Archer (N1821K). It's a nice airplane. Kathleen is doing a safety study and there will be an article in AOPA "Pilot" magazine in a couple of months. The folks in Frederick MD were super nice to me.. I had a great time and would help them again in a femtosecond. They even bought me lunch!! ;-)You can read the report...
January 28, 2002 -- Now I can tell you what they (the AOPA folks) did to me while I was there. They had me fly under the hood and when I wasn't looking they killed the vacuum pump. They had it running using an electric motor.
I first flew one ILS-23 into KFDK for practice. I was then to turn right and fly over to KHGR (about 24 miles away) for a GPS approach. During the climb to altitude they shut the vacuum pump off. I didn't notice it until I lowered the nose to level. The attitude indicator didn't respond. I checked the vacuum gauge and it was at zero. Up to that point I didn't know what they were 'studying'. They then wanted to know what I was going to do. The safety pilot was playing ATC so I told him I was declaring an emergency and wanted no gyro victors back to KFDK ILS-23. He did that and I flew the approach to a full stop.
The fellow flying as safety pilot commented after we were on the ground that I was pilot number 10 to be studied and up to that point no one had had any problems getting the airplane on the ground. My arm pits were wet when I taxied in but it was fun. I had worked hard to do it right.
I found that I can reconize a vacuum failure and handle it. The weather was CAVU so if I screwed up it would have been easy to recover. They commented that they had done the same study on a sim and found that about 30% had crashed. I understand they changed to a Bonanza and did have some problems..
The bottom line is if you have a vacuum pump failure while IMC, declare an emergency!! And give ATC all the work you can.. You have a job and it's a hard one!! When you get on the ground you can then buy that controller a case of beer!!
The first of August 2003 I flew N40725, an R-22B, to Jonesboro Arkansas and
spent about 3 week flying 'low over the rice' helping the rice pollinate. The downwash
of the helo would blow the pollen around. The weather was hot for this Minnesota
boy but I worked with a fun crew..
Here are the guys at our lunch break refueling the helos. We would land about noon, refuel and have a quick snack. Then it was back into the fields by 12:30.
Here is a pix of 4 of the guys flying to work.. There were 6 of us heading out that day. I was taking the pix and the other helo was headed in a different direction.
We flew about 5 hours each day.
This is Bryant flying a Schweizer 300C. He is demonstrating how low we fly. Since Bryant was flying the only Schweizer we were always giving him a hard time.
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