Tuesday, February 03, 1998

The Separated Man Also Rises (Lesson #4)

The separated man also rises! This was my first lesson since the whole separation (and soon divorce) mess started in fall 1997, just after I got back from Germany. Quite an interruption there (of a lot of things!). A few little changes at Hopedale too – Jason and Joe both gone south, and Jeff has a new CFI, Bjorn, a very young Swedish guy who is really nice and has excellent English. I preflight checked the C172 (the C150 is gone too – bummer), and also did all the taxiing, the takeoff, and climbout (let it get a bit nose high/slow on the climbout). It felt OK. Scenery was different with snow and no leaves – a lot easier to spot the airport!

I did OK on straight and level, climbs, turns, etc. except for a tendency to drift right (too much rudder and/or not adding left aileron to compensate for the right rudder held against full-power engine torque). I also looked at the instruments too much and trimmed too early. Bjorn had me do some slow flight, which was pretty good once I got the power and trim set right. I asked for stalls and he let me do power and power off stalls. I let the nose come up too high after one and got a secondary stall (actually was close and Bjorn pulled it back the rest of the way to show me – the left wing dropped a lot, but we recovered fast before any spin possibility – I also allowed the nose to drift high after recovery other times, and was off on timing the raising of flaps. NEED TO GET A POSITIVE RATE OF CLIMB BEFORE CUTTING POWER OR RAISING THE NOSE TOO HIGH.

I was able to spot the airport better with water tower landmark and black strip vs. white field. He talked me through the turns as we glided down to pattern altitude (1300 feet). He let me do the final approach, but I turned from base to final WAY too late (I thought he would take it at that point). Had to make S-turns and come in rather steep and fast – Bjorn took the plane and saved the landing, but touchdown was beyond mid-field (still plenty of room to stop, but not exactly slick).

I’m thinking I’ll try to do maybe a lesson a month – slow progress at that rate, but better than zero, and all I can likely afford (if that!). I like Bjorn – hope he sticks around a while. I should start my ground school study again, but I’m too busy looking on the Web for prospective dates! I’m finding women who sing, but so far none with an airplane! Maybe I should join a pilot’s club of some sort?!?!

Time: 0.9 hrs dual TT 6.0 hrs (C172 at 1B6)

No comments: