December 2013

Experimenter is a magazine created by EAA for people who build airplanes. We will report on amateur-built aircraft as well as ultralights and other light aircraft.

Issue link: http://experimenter.epubxp.com/i/234576

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Page 37 of 40

L i g h t P l a n e Wor l d at Registry.FAA.gov/aircraftinquiry/. With the make and model search tool, look for "Quicksilver Sport" or "Challenger II" or any other favorite light plane type, and a list will be produced that is sorted by state. If there's an owner in your local area, contact your local EAA Chapter (you can locate one by visiting www.eaa.org/chapters) to see if someone can help you connect with that owner and verify the aircraft is airworthy and that the pilot is trained to offer a ride. Light Plane Rides at AirVenture It is possible to get a demo flight during AirVenture in the ultralight area. The commercial vendors give demo flights to potential customers and guests, but there is sometimes a long waiting list. Volunteers are occasionally rewarded with a flight when there is an open seat. Getting a demo flight at AirVenture is a fabulous experience that may require a bit of luck. Your scheduled flight can be aborted by high winds, delays caused by congestion on the runway, or a military aircraft flyby on the main runway that halts our flying. Hopefully, persistence will be rewarded (as it has for me) when an acquaintance taps you on the shoulder and says, "Let's go flying." If it's an open cockpit, the pilot will be concerned about any loose items in your pockets or a cell phone that might go through the prop. Cameras should be on a strap, not simply hand held. Be ready to leave any backpacks or other gear with a friend or flight line volunteer. Watch This "Watch this" are two words you never want to hear while flying as a passenger. They are usually followed by an abrupt or impulsive maneuver you might not have consented to had you been asked. Such behavior is bad form and a bad reflection on the professionalism of the pilot. It happened to me once quite unexpectedly and so quickly there was no time to speak. We didn't exceed the allowable flight envelope or shed any parts, and it was over in a few seconds; but I was not impressed. The pilot should always brief the passenger on what is going to happen and give him a choice. Make them feel like they have some control. Every airplane ride is a chance to educate. In good piloting we tell our passengers what we are going to do, and then we do it. Don't assume everyone willing to climb into your second seat wants to see how quickly it accelerates to VNE (velocity-neverexceed) or how well it recovers from stalls. Ask before doing. 38 Vol.2 N o.12 / December 2013 "Let's go fying" are three words that are music to the ears of anyone who loves aviation. What If You Get Sick? Every pilot alive will agree we want our passengers to speak up immediately if they start feeling motion sickness. Don't ignore it and hope it will go away. There is no shame in developing airsickness, as anyone can experience it under the right conditions. A new kind of plane, dehydration, indigestion, a bad piece of fish, or an all-night party can trigger motion sickness even in the most hardy among us. (It's not important how I know about each of those.) Simply ask the pilot to return to the airport immediately because you are not feeling well. Pilots, keep an eye on your passengers and watch for signs of overheating. If your aircraft has a tandemseat configuration, you have to keep talking and ask periodically how your passenger is feeling. For help with this problem, read the article "Lying Flat on the Grass" in the July 2013 Experimenter. Have Good Equipment If you are going to give free rides, or charge for time in an S-LSA, you naturally want to have good equipment that will enhance the experience for newcomers. Poor headsets with inadequate noise suppression or an uncomfortable helmet can spoil the flight for your passenger. A good working intercom and radio system that allows the passenger to talk with you and hear the radio calls adds to the fun. Any working instructor should have this equipment. In taking many rides over the years, I have experienced awful helmets with wind noise so extreme it was all I remember from the flight. I have also had someone behind me yelling in my ear while I tried to figure out how to fly the plane. If you want to give rides, get the good gear. Please send your comments and suggestions about this column to dgrunloh@illicom.net. Dan Grunloh, EAA 173888, is a retired scientist who began flying ultralights and light planes in 1982. He won the 2002 and 2004 U.S. National Microlight Championships in a trike and flew with the U.S. World Team in two FAI World Microlight Championships.

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