Tuesday, January 26, 2016

10 hour oil change

So we hit another major milestone today, we finally reached 10 hours of flight time.  This meant that we could do the first oil change to check the filter for any signs of metal.  A critical point in time as it would give us our first glimpse inside of the engine after the return to flight.

I am beyond thrilled to report that not only was there no metal issues found but we also showed no signs of excess blow-through or carbon buildups.

If the weather holds this weekend we have been cleared to take her on a small trip to the next airport over. (KAFP)

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Quick Flight Today

Today's flight was pretty routine, getting more hours in outside the pattern.  Today we climbed up to 3500 feet to the base of the clouds and out to the practice area.  It was a little too bumpy to work on manuevers but still a nice little flight.

It was also the first flight with the wheel pants, new tires and new beacon.

Any time spent in the air is good time.

Friday, January 15, 2016

This little light of mine....

Well I'm sad to report that the Grimes Rotating Beacon, high atop the tail, that has watched over the little Cherokee's flights since 1972 has finally passed on to the great beyond.

We have repaired and cleaned the old beacon several times but finally it reached a point where it was no longer repairable.  Time for an upgrade!

We have replaced the old mechanical beacon with a new self contained halogen light.  This new unit (with adapter plate) mounted directly into the spot of the old beacon and required no re-wire or changing out of the electronics.

Also, being that we no longer have to drive a mechanical motor AND a lamp the power draw on the battery is now less, which is always a bonus.

They do make more energy efficient strobe or LED systems that I could have installed but (for now) they were cost prohibitive, so I opted to go for the basic halogen lamp system. 

Still an upgrade over the original system.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

New Tires and Pants On

With Tinker Belle supervising the work, the little Cherokee got her a set of 3 brand new 600-6 GoodYear Tires.  We were waiting on new tires before we put the wheel pants back on, this should add about 100 knots to the cruise speed :)

It does feel good to finally get to see the plane "whole" again.

Unfortunately, we were unable to take her on a flight due to very gusty winds and low ceilings.  But hopefully soon we will get to take her for another spin.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Another milestone...

The First Wing View from the Cherokee
This weekend saw two major milestones for the little Cherokee.  First was a flight lasting 1.2 hrs which is to date the longest single flight of the Cherokee, second and most excitedly today we were able to leave the pattern for the first time.

The Cherokee was able to perform all of the 'standard' manuevers for the first time.  Slow flight, stalls, and steep turns.

Next up will be a short XC to a nearby airport!

Also, and most importantly I was able to use the plane to achieve one of the goals I had set which was to share the joy of aviation by giving someone their very first airplane ride.  Being able to share the joy and fun of general aviation with others has always been one of my goals.  

Late evening over the practice area