Slow Flight Practice

Today I worked on slow flight at 38 knots. Slower than last week when I was at 45-50 knots.

I kept over-compensating with ailerons so I kept turning – zigzagging all over the sky. Annoying, but toward the end of today’s hour, I think I’d gotten better at maintaining a heading. Small movements Christina! I can hold it level for just under 20 seconds now (before getting distracted). My airspeed is fine, I need a bit of finesse in holding the correct pitch, and I really need to work on holding altitude. (note to self: remember that in slow flight, altitude is maintained with throttle! not pitch.)

Things were made harder because I forgot to grab the pillow I normally sit on. ‘What horizon?’ Arrg, the joys of being short.

I finally figured out how much pressure to apply to the right rudder. It was amazing how quickly that stabilized the directional gyro. Great to feel that control. Apparently I have just been way off for the last 3 flight hours but CFI1 let me get away with it. CFI2 will not (I’m glad).

Was able to do all the radio work correctly without having to mentally rehearse everything before speaking. 😀

Also got to go up with the same student pilot as yesterday. He did three nice landings and then was allowed to solo! Congrats to him for doing it quickly in a Piper Arrow. Thanks to him, I feel like I can more accurately visualize the pattern. Good feelings all around.

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I like finding UAF from the air. The large white rooftop at the bottom is Fred Meyer. UAF is the first row of buildings below the mountains. See two white buildings with a gap in-between? The left building is the Museum of the North. Reichardt is the one on the right.

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Things to work on:

  • Taxiing: slow down more, stay on the line!
  • Slow flight: altitude is maintained with throttle! not pitch.
  • Stop forgetting the pillow – I like being able to see out the window.
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