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Ross Statham

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Everything posted by Ross Statham

  1. NHey gang, thought I'd let you all know what I ultimately did on my "hanger" towbar. All materials supplied by Lowe's, and EASILY made myself. I ended up using 1/2 inch iron piping for the t-handles, a long 48” 1/2 inch pipe for the length. But at the bottom, I used a "transition" elbow-- 1/2" on one side of the elbow, and 3/4" on the other side of the elbow. Into that side I screwed a 8 inch long section of 3/4" pipe, which is what I now insert into the tow socket of the plane. (Hope all of this is making sense.) I used some leftover red paint and painted everything but the 3/4" pipe re
  2. Many years ago I had sold my 20-F and bought a 1954 Bonanza V-tail with an old style electric variable pitch prop. My wife and I had it all tested, fueled, loaded up and ready to fly from central Florida to Vermont. I had filed a flight plan for a 3.5 hour leg, opened my flight plan, taxied to the the of the runway, and did my final run up before calling the tower. Uh oh. The pitch on the prop was badly out of adjustment, for some strange reason, and we had to call the flight off. Would not build RPM. We had already taken the time off at work and had paid for a cabin in Vermont, so w
  3. Actually this is an area of personal expertise, so it’s nice that I can actually chime in. I spent two months researching and evaluating cameras, gear and procedures and have photographed natural disasters for FEMA and GEMA (including a massive F5 tornado track aftermath). I understand most of the ins and outs of this. I’ve shot thousands of frames. The good news is that your smart phone includes geotagging every time you snap a photo. The bad news is that even the very best smartphones still only have a chintzy little lens, and while your megapixel count is high, the optics aren’t m
  4. I try to use different instructors during my flight reviews. We have at least three CFIs based on our small field, and I’ve found it helpful to fly with different ones as well as use others at fields close by. Each has a slightly different approach and teaching style. I like to fly for an hour with one of these guys every 12 months or so, then ideally sit down for another hour over a cup of bad airport coffee and listen to their thoughts and observations as to what I did, and didn’t do, as well as general observations. It’s made me a better and safer pilot. When I was a member o
  5. I’m impressed with her resume and accomplishments. Instead of yet another career bureaucrat appointment, the aviation community instead gets a pilot and aircraft owner who is also a retired USAF colonel who was involved with overseas assignments in combat zones? What was the FAA thinking? https://nbaa.org/press-releases/nbaa-welcomes-dr-susan-northrup-as-new-faa-federal-air-surgeon/ Most promising.
  6. I live in the western panhandle now, but used to be based in Brooksville, then Zephyrhills for a short while. One of my favorite destinations then and now is also shared by many- Williston, (X60), close to Ocala. Easy in and out, great little restaurant on the field owned by a nice couple, and superb gas prices, too. Makes for a nice refuel or food stop if you’re headed to or from Cedar Key or points north or west, or just hungry. (Once flew there in a jump seat on a Challenger just so we could fill up the jet and get a great hamburger. But that’s another story....) Another popul
  7. I started this thread four weeks ago with a posting about my first vaccination. Here’s a report on our second. My wife and I had our second Moderna shot 30 hours ago. It’s now the evening of the day after. The only symptom I exhibited was a sore arm this morning. I felt perfectly fine all day, and even managed to get in a 15 mile bike ride after work. My wife had a sore arm, body aches and a fever that started this morning and broke about 12 hours later. The bodyaches seem to be fading and she is feeling better. As others have noted, stronger reactions but short term.
  8. 6I used to fly my first Mooney, an M20F, just about anywhere, including a great trip to the UP several years ago, flying in and out of Marquette. The flight up was solid IMC across Wisconsin coming up from north Georgia, but even with that it was much simpler and easier than flying commercial. Lots of airports up there to choose from, too. Years later and today I fly a J model and live in Florida. I have a trip to Washington state planned for this summer in my J. Mooneys are truly traveling machines. I gotta agree with everyone else on this- get a Mooney and get your instrument t
  9. Perhaps try a can of “Betty White”. It seems to hold up well with age.
  10. I often read a poster’s profile, as well as reading their posts going back a bit. That gives me a sense about their listening skills, currency, and especially their analytical abilities. Do they simply react, or do they think before responding? Profiles can help give a few clues to their flight resume. Viewing their “states flown” also really helps understand experience. But as others have pointed out, you can always take advice or ignore it. When I served in the Army I came to understand that the ribbons and badges on another’s uniform were generally indicative of their experiences
  11. Great question about selling my F, and getting a J. Here goes. Several years ago I was living in Georgia and I sold my basically equipped F model and bought a Bonanza V-tail at a “great price.” Or so I thought. After I bought that Bo, I discovered there were a lot of things about that plane that were not what I wanted, including several maintenance issues and ownership costs. (I’ve discussed some of those in another post.) As much as I like several features of the Bonanza, I kept wondering why I had “upgraded.” A big maintenance issue reared it’s ugly head at annual, and it didn’t ta
  12. Ah. Thanks for the altitude tip. That’s why I reached out to you guys!
  13. There is very little advice I can add to the already excellent advice that has been given. One thing I think I would amplify is that when I’ve sold my planes in the past I have always ensured that I have detailed pictures and the logs, done my homework on price and told the story. In several cases I had people call me up after having gone through the posting description, the photos and the logs at length (for two or three days I learned later) to say something like, “your information was really complete, and I only have a few more questions before we talk about details about moving forwar
  14. It truly amazes me how the strangest maintenance items seem to pop up out of nowhere where aircraft ownership is concerned. I had a frustrating right wingtip strobe issue that only went away when I finally replaced both strobes with LEDs; we never could track that issue down. I’m not an A&P, so I usually end up scratching my head, calling smart guys like you and picking their brain, and digging around the web until one of us figures it out or the answer magically appears. Eventually. My wife and I own older (paid for) domestically made vehicles, and I own and maintain a 1978 Kubota
  15. Thanks! I’ll plan an early ride thru this area and VFR flight following. And thanks for the restaurant tips too!
  16. Last year I installed combination LED position and “strobe” (very bright white LEDs) in my J for a little under one standard aviation unit (a thousand bucks) and I LOVE them. One of my strobes had failed, it only made sense. My A&P and I took out the voltage converter for the strobes in each wing, wired the circuit to the lights, and haven’t had any issue with the dimming described above. 90 minute swap out. Here’s where it matters: The first evening that I went out north of the field to practice our NAV approaches with a safety pilot, I had two other pilots remark that they coul
  17. Boundaries like you have described on cross-countries are interesting and I don’t often understand them. Many times I’ve crossed clear air frontal boundaries or pressure gradients and watched the “over the ground” speed decrease or increase drastically- and/or observe the autopilot slowly dial in crab angles to compensate for wind direction changes, some rather drastic. Similar issue to yours, just not dangerous. It tells me that there are things going on I need to be aware of, and not to let my guard down. I’m glad you raised a question on this forum. It’ll remind me to more closely l
  18. Spot on. I deal with a lot of different types of insurance policies at work, including our aviation insurance over the years. One of the biggest lessons that I was taught several years ago by a friend (a lot smarter than me) was that I should speak to several different aviation insurance brokers, and get several quotes. There are a great number of people every year who are transitioning to complex and high-performance aircraft, and they’re dealing with the same problem. As noted above, insurers are in business to make money, and they don’t make money if they don’t sell policies. I have
  19. Wow. What a GREAT panel! Clean, well laid out, highly functional. Kudos and congrats!
  20. Funny! But I’m unqualified to answer that one. But it IS funny how they all have personalities and typically end up getting named.
  21. Appreciate your asking about comparing Mooneys and Bonanzas-- I've owned both an older Bonanza v-tail as well as two Mooneys. Bonanzas and Mooneys are both considered great aircraft-- here's been a few of my other observations to add to what's already been very well said: maintenance on my Bo' was more problematic, and expensive by far. Probably due to my owning an older model, but others have chimed in on that topic. On the other hand, the American Bonanza Society is superb, and can help its members to diagnose and resolve most things that arise due to their store of knowledge. Parts for
  22. I know this has been covered before, but I thought that this time of year might be a good time to re-visit "lessons learned" in owning and flying a Mooney. I first flew (and got my commercial training and check-out) on a "G" model many years ago; I have owned both an "F" model as well as a "J" (our current baby). I do love my "J", whom my wife dubbed "Plane Jane" (N6201Y). Here are a few lessons I learned both in owning them as well as flying them-- some the easy way, some the hard way: The importance and safety of using the checklist, flow and memory aids EVERY flight-- and in creati
  23. Rudy has rebuilt two or three on my instruments over the years. They were recommended 12 years ago by an A&P buddy, and I’ve had nothing but great experiences myself.
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