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Schlagwort: Cessna150

North German Plain

North German Plain

Visibility: more than 10 kilometers
ceiling: more than 2.000 feet
GAFOR: “O” open skies
Temperature: 21°C
Wind: 260, 10 knots
QNH: 1024hPa
Location: EDOP (Parchim)
Equipment: D-EARE (Cessna 150)

My flying friend Bernd has a work assignment. He needs to take areal pictures of a pipeline. A co-pilot, who can fly while he takes the pictures, would make the job much easier for him. So he asks me and I – of course – am game!

We meet in Parchim (EDOP). The airport is large but not busy. Our plan was to fly in a Cessna 172. But unfortunately it had technical problems and we have to use a much smaller Cessna 150 as back-up. D-EARE (“Romeo Echo”) is old and very basic. She does not even have a VOR on board. But she flies, I am certified to fly her and am familiar with the type, and I get to fly for free. So I will not complain!

After checking out the aircraft, we go over the route for today. Bernd has several way points that he has marked on the map. One of them is north of the rest, noticeably off the route. He smiles and says something about a private detour but does not tell me more.

Bernd wants to do take-offs and landings to practice. The rest of the flying is basically for me. He will navigate and take pictures. This is much better than I had anticipated!

“The impact is still visible”

“Romeo Echo” handles well, just like “Lima X-Ray“. We stay low between the picture sites. Eventually, Bernd guides me toward the single site that is apart from the others. It is a farm close to a small town, right by a lake. It looks very scenic. In the wheat field closest to the farm house, there is a track visible. “This is were I made an emergency landing.” Bernd says.

So this is the “private business” he did not want to go into details about before we left. Now he tells me the whole story. He owns a motorized hang glider. Two weeks ago, he had engine problems and had to land on this very field. When his engine quit, he looked for a possible landing site and carried out a decent touch-down. Just as he was trained to do. The damage was minimal and no one got hurt. I am impressed.

The farmer family helped him and was very friendly. That is why he decided to take pictures of the farm as a present to them.

Fish for lunch

The trip takes us well over three hours. We fly past the city of Hamburg and cross the mighty Elbe river. Close to the coast, the area gets less interesting from above. The north German plains are just that, plain.

The last site on Bernd’s list is close to the city of Leer. After we have taken all the pictures, we land there for fuel for both, aircraft and crew. The airport in Leer has a nice restaurant with a terrace looking onto the runway. We have fish for lunch and two colleagues from the local construction office join us.

The way back is very easy. We take the scenic route along the coast, cross Jade Bight and come even closer to Hamburg before we turn south.

We arrive back in Parchim with well over six flight hours under our belts. This is a lot of flying in one day for a low time pilot and I am beat. What a day!

To be continued…


(originally posted on August 12, 2012 by tilbo at aloft.blog.com/north-german-plain/)

Instrument flying

Instrument flying

Visibility: right around 1.5 kilometers
Temperature: 11°C
QNH: 1014hPa
Location: EDAY
Equipment: Cessna 150 (D-EALX)

It is a miserable day with visibilities so close to the VFR minimums, that only the fact that it is Saturday is getting aircraft in the air. I arrive at the flight school and we start our morning with an extended theory lesson.

Around mid morning we go out to fly a few patterns to see if the visibility has improved. It has not. In the down wind leg we are just about able to see the runway.

Back in the briefing room, we continue theory of radio navigation. Today I am introduced to the concept of the VOR (VHF Omnidirectional Radio). This is a network of ground based radio stations. Their signal can be picked up by the VOR receiver in the aircraft which displays the relative position of the aircraft to the station.

We go through the theory. Then we simulate a trip on the computer. After that the flight instructor looks out of the window. The fog has not lifted. “Today would be a great day to get some real life experience” he says refering to the poor visibility. I’m game.

Our half hour trip will be a triangle to the south. My job will be to follow VOR and compass and to fly the aircraft without looking out of the window (there is not much to see out there anyway). The job of the flight instructor is to tell me the new headings at the way points.

We are departing to the south, following the VOR receiver in the cockpit to a close by VOR station. I hold the course and maintain the correct altitude. Maintaining the correct attitude with the artificial horizon is something new to me. It requires a lot of my concentration.

We use the VOR station as our first turning point and change the course to the north east. Again we follow its signal, this time to guide us away from the sender.

The next turning point, which will bring us on a western course back to the airport, is more complicated to find. We calculated the time after which we should get there and we know the heading for the last leg of the trip back home. As we are getting closer to the turning point, we start calling in to the airport to get our bearing.

At about 30 degrees south of the final bearing, I begin a left bank onto the new course. I peek out of the side window. Beneath the clouds and the fog I see something dark which may or may not be the lake that markes our way point.

We keep confirming the heading to the airport and before long, we see our home field through the mist. This was great training. I’m sure I will be tired tonight!

To be continued…


(originally posted on November 10, 2011 by tilbo at aloft.blog.com/instrument-flying/)



Visibility: less than 5 kilometers
Temperature: 10°C
QNH: 1014hPa
Location: EDAY
Equipment: Cessna 150 (D-EALX)

I have an appointment at a different flight school in EDAY today to sign up for the PPL, the Private Pilots License. It is the next step from my Sports Pilots License.

The new flight school is in the tower building. A friendly office manager welcomes me to a tidy room with large windows. We go through the details and start the paper work.

Next door, a flight instructor is preparing a check ride with another student. It is a rainy day with a low cloud ceiling. The weather is around minimums and they are debating weather or not to cancel the check ride.

New part of the airport
I have been flying in EDAY for a little over a year but I had not been to the round hangar at the far end of the airport. This is where the Cessnas of the new flight school are living.

D-EALX, Cessna 150

Meet Lima X-Ray
My new ship is going to be Lima X-Ray, a Cessna 150 that is older than me. She has the look and feel of an old-timer but I know that her logs are up to date and that she is absolutely airworthy. The aircraft is larger and heavier that the light sports aircraft I had been flying so far, but the cabin is surprisingly narrow. We pre-flight the aircraft and I get my first hands-on experience with a certified aircraft. I read the flight manual of the C150 last week. That helps me now.

We taxi to the runway. The fight instructor operates the radio and I concentrate on steering. On the runway I slowly push the throttle forward. The Rolls Royce engine has a reassuringly deep vibrato. At 60 mph I start taking weight of the front wheel. At 80 mph I carefully lift Lima X-Ray off the runway, ease back on the joke to let her pick up speed close to the ground before I pull her up gently at 90 mph. So far so good.

We climb out of the pattern and break through a layer of scattered clouds at about twelve hundred feet. I know the area but I quickly loose my orientation with the poor visibility and my concentration on the new aircraft. The instructor keeps track of were we are while I do full circles to get a feeling for the handling of the aircraft.

Back in the pattern we do an approach. I am in charge of steering and holding the correct speed. The instructor takes care of the power settings and the flaps. I am pleasantly surprised how stable the glide path is and how easily Lima X-Ray comes down onto the runway. It is a calm day, that certainly helps. On the next round the instructor adds the flaps to my responsibilities and from the third touch-and-go on, I also set the power. I’m officially flying the little Cessna now.

The fifth landing is our last one for the day and we taxi back to the hangar. I’m enthusiastic. Not surprising, I guess…

To be continued…


(originally posted on October 27, 2011 by tilbo at aloft.blog.com/d-ealx/)