Annemasse

A quick trip to Annemasse (LFLI) in the A36. More photos at GZLOJ.net

Parked at Annemasse

Parked at Annemasse

Gîte

To France with some friends for the 2014 Le Mans Classic weekend. I filmed our Gîte with the Phantom.

Sailing with the Phantom

Preparing for the Round The Island Race 2014:

Sports Weekend

Our bonkers friends in Devon, Simon and Mandy, kindly organise a Sports Weekend every year. This time I filmed it with the Phantom 2 Vision+.

And it’s still dry!

A36 to Mali Losinj

For our first big trip in the A36 we flew from Denham (EGLD) near London, to Mali Losinj (LDLO) Croatia, for the EuroGA.org fly-in.

While there I took the chance to fly the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ quadcopter – some footage is included here.

A36 to Croatia

The Bonanza is finally airworthy! The engine has been zero-timed and we’ve replaced the Garmin GNS530 with a Garmin GTN750. Also added are an ADL120 datalink weather box and a PMA8000BT Bluetooth Audio panel.

For our first major trip we joined the EuroGA.org fly-in to Mali Losinj in Croatia. Strong headwinds gave us a 6 hr 5 minute flight outbound, but with tip tanks installed we landed with 37 US gallons of fuel, over three hours reserve. After a day and a half socialising and flying the Phantom 2 Vision+ (video to follow), we returned to the UK in glorious weather.

Phantom in the Rain

A short flight over Marlow in the rain.

DJI Phantom 2 Vision+

New toy: DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ with gyro-stabilised camera. Confused? Let go of the controls and it comes to a GPS hover. WiFi signal lost? (800m). It flies back to the start point and lands. Wonderful fun. Each battery lasts about 25 minutes (get three!).

First flight last night ably assisted by expert RC fliers Andy and Tony.

A330-300: My 85th Type

Just completed my checkout on the A330-300. It’s lighter on the controls than the A340, particularly the A340-600. The rate of climb is impressive after take-off, not so impressive at top-of-climb.

Now I have to fly it exclusively for 50 hours – after that I’ll be flying the A330 and A340 as the roster requires.

Rules to Fly By

These do the rounds on the internet from time to time.

  • Pilots are people who fly aircraft for other people who can’t fly. Passengers are people who say they fly, but really just ride
  • Fighter Pilots are steely-eyed, weapons systems managers who kill bad people and break things. However, they can also be very charming and personable
  • The average fighter pilot, despite sometimes having a swaggering exterior, is very much capable of such feelings as love, affection, intimacy and caring. (However, these feelings don’t involve anyone else.)
  • Flying is a hard way to earn an easy living
  • Both optimists and pessimists contribute to society. The optimist invents the aeroplane; the pessimist, the parachute
  • Death is just nature’s way of telling you to watch your airspeed
  • As a pilot only two bad things can happen to you (and one of them will):
    • One day you will walk out to the aircraft, knowing it is your last flight
    • One day you will walk out to the aircraft, not knowing it is your last flight
  • There are rules and there are laws:
    • The rules are made by men who think that they know how to fly your aircraft better than you
    • The laws (of physics) were ordained by God
    • You can and sometimes should suspend the rules, but you can never suspend the laws
  • About Rules:
    • The rules are a good place to hide if you don’t have a better idea and the talent to execute it
    • If you deviate from a rule, it must be a flawless performance (e.g., if you fly under a bridge, don’t hit the bridge.)
  • Before each flight, make sure that your bladder is empty and your fuel tanks are full
  • He who demands everything that his aircraft can give him is a pilot; he who demands one iota more is a fool
  • There are certain aircraft sounds that can only be heard at night and over the ocean. Most of them are scary
  • The aircraft limits are only there in case there is another flight by that particular aircraft. If subsequent flights do not appear likely, there are no limits
  • “If the Wright brothers were alive today, Wilbur would have to fire Orville to reduce costs.” (President, DELTA Airlines.)
  • In the Alaskan bush, I’d rather have a two-hour bladder and three hours of gas than vice versa
  • An old pilot is one who can remember when flying was dangerous and sex was safe
  • You have to make up your mind about growing up and becoming a pilot. You can’t do both