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About mparis

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    Will fly for food
  • Birthday 12/31/1912

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  1. Post your Favorite Pic

    The first one was taken with a Nikon D7000 and a Nikkor 10mm fisheye. The next two were taken with a D70 and I think a 28mm Nikkor lens. I think the last one was with the D70, but I don't remember. It's the Yellowtail dam in Wyoming.
  2. Post your Favorite Pic

    Here's a few of mine.
  3. iPad Aviation Apps

    I use Foreflight and I don't really have anything recent to compare it to, but I'm constantly amazed at all the new features they keep adding. In the Jet-A burning world there's a few other products that are more specialized and give you things products like Foreflight don't such as providing performance numbers, but Foreflight is starting to add more and more. Those other products cost several times more than Foreflight and are something you'd typically have if you flew professionally for a flight department that has a lot of pilots. If anyone is curious about the Performance Plus option in Foreflight, I have that along with the Jepp plates add on. I'm not sure anyone who doesn't fly professionally would want those extra features. The fuel planning options are quite nice though, and I they even have a profile set up for my 182. Basically the way it works is you select the profile for your plane depending on how fast you want to go and it then uses that profile to tell you which routes and altitudes work the best. The only thing I don't like about it is you just have a slider to adjust for more or less fuel burned, so you can't go in there and tweak the profiles.
  4. Many people use fltplan.com. In addition to ATC assigned routes you also get RAIM prediction which is nice if you plan on using GNSS. If you opt for the Peformance Plus plan in Foreflight you get both of those things.
  5. how best to brief the approach...

    The hard part about flying single pilot IFR is you have to do these things yourself while flying the airplane. It's much easier when there's a two crewmember flight, but often you don't have that luxury. Most of the time, but not always, you aren't rushed when briefing an approach. If you aren't rushed, it's a good idea to study all the information on it because it's jam packed with things you should know, particularly if it's an approach you aren't familiar with. With experience you learn which parts of the plate are more important than others, so the way most pilots are going to do it is to start at the top, work to the right, and then repeat as you work your way down. On a long cross country I like to start reviewing the most likely approach I'll be using as soon as I'm established in the cruise and no longer task saturated. Since I have two comm and two nav radios, I like to dedicate these to the ILS or VOR for the approach and set the ATIS/ASOS/AWOS and the tower frequency. I like to look at where my obstacles are and if they are going to be an issue for the approach and missed paths. I wanna know how I'm going to identify my missed approach point and start chair flying the missed approach procedure. As time allows I might do this several times until I'm confident I have it memorized. Often overlooked is the MSA altitude. Pick the highest one and memorize it. If you lose all situational awareness that's the altitude you're going to want to go to. The bottom line is you should never accept any approach until you are confident you can execute it safely however long it takes you to review the procedure. If ATC assigns you a different approach than the one you're prepared to fly, request the one you are prepared for. If you don't get it, ask for a hold or vectors until you can review the procedure. If you aren't confident with an approach, the chances of mistakes go up exponentially and if you really need to execute an approach in the soup, you don't want to be figuring things out on the fly. The thing that gets left out is almost always the missed procedure, which is a big reason why people get killed trying to execute a missed.
  6. Is anyone still using this board?

    I just started ground school this week for the CL-600 type certificate (Bombardier Challenger 600/601) for PIC. I should get my ticket punched on or about Feb 9th.
  7. approach practice

    The altitude alert algorithm is pretty simple. The entire airspace is divided into small blocks and each block has a minimum altitude. If you are a tracked target (not squawking 1200), and you fly into a block at an altitude that's lower than the specified altitude for that block, it generates an altitude alert. So it has nothing to do with how fast you are descending. Personally I like to fly that approach at no more than 80kts, especially if you have a tailwind and ceilings close to minimums. At 100kts with a 20kt tailwind you're going to need to descend at around 1000' per minute to get to the MDA before CUXPI.
  8. MDA vs DA

    I'm not an instructor, so teaching people IFR is a different ballgame. But here's some food for thought. Is the method of going missed the same with a precision vs non-precision approach? Generally speaking, no it is not. With a precision approach you go directly from the decent phase to the climb phase with no leveling off in between. With a non-precision approach you may and quite often will level off at some point prior to going missed. So let's say as a personal minimum you always add 50' to a DA to insure you don't descend below the DA. You are still descending when you make your decision. As a personal minimum if you add 50' to the MDA to make sure you don't go below it, you are just changing the point at which you level off, which may or may not be the same point where you make your decision to go missed.
  9. MDA vs DA

    In a continuing effort to add a bit of meat back into this site I'm going to continue with another IFR subject which was a bit of a mystery to me when I got my IFR rating. I'll also throw in some real world application of what it's like to fly an approach down to minimums, which is almost certainly quite different than anything you experienced in training. On a typical precision approach chart you'll typically have MDA, DA, and DH depicted and sometimes multiple values for some of these things. Decision Height (DH) is for aircraft equipped with a Radar AlTimeter, so if you don't have a RAT, don't worry about it. MDAs are for non-precision approaches and DAs are for precision approaches. That part is simple enough, but the application of those two things is quite different. To give a little different answer than the textbook one, assuming you wind up going missed a DA is something you can descend below while a MDA you cannot. The MDA is pretty simple. You level off at the MDA and you don't go below it until you are in a position to land. This is true whether it's a straight in, sidestep, or circling approach. The DA is a bit more complicated. At the DA you must make a decision to land or go around. So it's a pretty safe bet that if you don't make a decision until the DA, you're going to descend below it before you start to climb because you're in a descent when you make the decision. This does not mean you can change your mind and land after DA. Descending below the DA to "take a peek" has turned perfectly good pilots into a smoking craters. Make a decision at or above DA and execute that decision, period. When you are in training, you will fly many approaches down to "minimums', where the instructor tells you to flip up or pull off the hood and voila! The runway appears in HD clarity in perfect CAVU conditions. Flying an approach to real IMC minimums can be quite different. Let's assume a typical ILS approach with 200' ceiling, 1800' visibility minimums with a full set of approach lights. An approach to minimums could mean you have a well defined stratus layer that ends at 200' and good visibility below, or it could be the ceiling is higher, but visibility is reduced to RVR1800 below, or you could have a ragged ceiling where visibility has significant variances at various points along the approach, or any combination of all of these things. Professional pilots who routinely fly approaches down to minimums kinda like to know what to expect, and will often fly into big airports with lots of tools that help them in both their per-approach planning and the application. So it's worth familiarizing yourself with what those various tools are like different types of approach lighting systems, RVR vs ASOS/AWOS, and so forth, but I'm not going to get into that more than just touching on the subject. Suffice it to say, gather as much information about the conditions as you can and form an idea of what that's going to look like before you have to make a decision on whether to land or not. For precision approaches that do have an approach lighting system, the most common type is the MALSR, which features strobe lights farthest out for alignment and various perpendicular bars of lights of varying colors and lengths. The idea is that at 1800' of visibility, you're going to see those lights well before you see the runway, and they will provide you with a reference for centerline alignment and distance to the threshold. The critical phase of the approach is the point at which you must transition from instruments to visual. Without going into the human factors and aeromedical realities, it's worth stating there's some significant challenges you'll face that you didn't have to deal with on those training approaches. At 2400' from the threshold is where the flashing lights are. Unless you have a great autopilot or you're just really good or really lucky, you aren't going to be lined up on the centerline. Use those flashing lights to line up and do so immediately. By the time you get even with them, you should have the threshold lights in sight. By the time you are even with the last flasher, you are 1400' from the runway threshold and below both vertical and horizontal minimums. In your training, you had a full runway to line up on. In reality you may not, and you may not even have a nice pretty set of lights to line up on either as not all approaches have them, particularly those handy LPV approaches that go down to some pretty low minimums. Jets and other larger planes typically have two pilots and a lot of that reason has to do with flying approaches down to minimums. One pilot is outside while the other is inside and they have a defined strategy on how to transition from one to the other. This is a luxury you don't have flying single pilot IFR, so it's worth careful consideration of whether or not you want to even attempt flying at or near minimums. Part 91 you can even attempt an approach that is below reported minimum conditions. It's another one of those things which might be legal, but ain't all that smart. Single pilot IFR it's worth developing a personal minimum strategy of what approaches you'll even attempt under a given set of conditions. It's also worth knowing the difference between the MDA and DA, so when you develop those personal minimums you can apply them in the same way you would with published minimums.
  10. approach practice

    Generally speaking the towers are very receptive of practice approaches, so you can always talk to them and find out how to do it. You can even ask to visit the tower and speak to them in person about it. I have little doubt GPM tower has a method worked out for doing it and since they now have a radar display, it makes it easier for them to accommodate. Personally I just don't like flying practice approaches in busy areas and there's just so many other better places to go that aren't that busy. Going against the flow of traffic makes things even more difficult and it just increases the chances you're going to have to break out prematurely. The frustrating part is you spend time setting yourself up for the approach only to have to break it off because of traffic. Not my idea of fun. As far as keeping the needles centered goes, my advice is to learn to use the rudder to keep yourself on the LOC and the throttle to keep yourself on the GS. When you can master flying an approach without using the yoke, you'll be able to fly an ILS approach to within one dot.
  11. approach practice

    My answer is don't do practice approaches at GPM, at least repetitive ones where you plan on going missed. There's nothing challenging about either of the non-precision approaches to GPM. Both feature no turns between the IAF and FAF, and less than 1,000' to descend to the MDA. The area over Joe Pool Lake is very busy with aircraft transitioning in all directions. There's obstructions, an adjacent class D, the cedar hill towers, and class B you have to deal with, along with a lot of helicopter traffic that doesn't always mix well with fixed wing. So in essence a lot of additional risk with very little benefit. If you want to do practice approaches into GPM because it's your home airport, make it the last one of the day where you plan on a full stop landing. My favorite place to practice approaches is Mesquite. It's not far from GPM and there's usually not much traffic even though there's a control tower which gives you another set of eyes. I fly the ILS 18, go missed, and then fly the back course to 36, go missed and then do the whole thing over again. Throw in a hold or two at PQF and I can get my six month IFR currency done inside of 30 minutes.
  12. Sport Pilot training in DFW?

    If you can get a 3rd class medical, then I think your best bet is to get the PPL. The hours you save in training aren't going to be worth it over the long term, and the additional hours spent training has value even if you don't plan on using the additional privileges. This is now especially true since the rules on the 3rd class medical have loosened.
  13. Another cool ForeFlight trick

    Yes. I like to put it on the far right and put descent rate next to it. That way when I'm ready to descend I match up the two numbers.
  14. I know some of you are working on getting IFR rated, and inevitably once you get rated and start flying IFR one of the things you are most likely to fumble with is copying the IFR clearance. Even experienced IFR pilots seem to have trouble with it. Personally I almost always go IFR when I am on a cross country trip even in good weather because it gives me practice working the system. Flying skills are perishable and particularly IFR, so with a bit of knowledge and practice, simple things like copying clearances get just that much easier. When I first started I followed all the advice you get from the experts on the subject, diligently following the C-R-A-F-T method and found it just didn't work for me. That's not to say it's bad advice, just that it required me to think faster than my slow brain works. So maybe that method works for some, but I'm just not that smart. That's not to say C-R-A-F-T is useless, because you will always get your clearance in that order unless the controller is doing something wrong. I just copy the whole thing down consecutively and don't worry about categorizing all the fields while I'm copying. More on this later. The first thing that's worth mentioning is how you file your flight plan. You can file your flight plan with nothing more than the origin and destination. Once filed, the computer will spit out your actual flight plan based on any required routings. The advantage to this is you won't get any arrival or departure procedures if they aren't required. The disadvantage to this is you might not get the transition you might prefer, or you might get a routing that you don't want. For instance, when flying from KNEW back to KGPM, I don't want to get routed over the lake, so I file via RQR VOR which is to the west. More on this later, but speaking of this I'll use this flight which I made on Monday as an example, which was KNEW RQR CQY DODJE5 KGPM. The next step which I think is important is knowing what the computer spit out. Foreflight has some great features which will actually send you a message when your route is accepted and will automatically load it into your active flight plan. You can also go to FlightAware.com and search on your tail number. Provided there's been enough time for it to process, you can find your flight plan there. Have your accepted flight plan up on your iPad or on the same piece of paper you're going to copy your clearance. C More often than not, your clearance is simply going to be something like "cleared to GPM as filed". The C part is actually just GPM. This is your clearance limit. While it is possible your clearance limit would not be your destination, this has never happened to me. R The R part is just "as filed" which means the route which you hopefully already have handy has been accepted. If what you filed and what the computer spit out aren't the same, then you're going to have some work to do writing down the route. This is where your homework will pay off. If you already have this information, then it's probably going to be the same. It is possible that from the time the computer originally spit out your route and now your route changed, so be ready if it's different. This is where shorthand is a must. For arrival and departure procedures, I always write down the first letter of the procedure and the number. So Hubbard Nine becomes H9. Kingdom Four becomes K4. You get the idea. There's all sorts of other shorthand methods and I'm not going to cover them all, but the point is develop something that works for you. In this case my route is something like "Reserve VOR, Dodge Five Arrival with Cedar Creek transition", but that's exactly what I filed, so all I get from Clearance Delivery is "as filed". A The shorthand for altitude is pretty simple. They will almost always assign an intermediate altitude followed by the altitude listed in your accepted flight plan. So "climb and maintain four thousand, expect eight thousand ten minutes after departure" becomes CM40 X80 10. F Departure frequency is pretty simple, but I simplify it even more by only copying the two numbers before and after the decimal point. For instance, 135.975 becomes 35.97. Unless you fly military aircraft, the first number will always be a 1 and the last number doesn't matter because you can't change it in your radio anyway. If you read back 35.97 instead of 135.975, ATC probably isn't going to call you on it. For the record, I never read back more than 4 digits even during routine frequency changes. Unnecessary communications is like nails on a chalkboard to ATC and they generally appreciate any effort to shorten transmissions. T Transponder code is self-evident. I usually write down S1234 just to remind me to read back "Squawk". Even though I've broken all these things out, I just copy them all onto one or two lines. With practice you should be able to read these things back exactly as they were given even when the controller talks like an auctioneer. This isn't going to happen the first few times out, so when you first call them up say "Speak Slowly". Immediately after getting your clearance, put as much of it as you can into your GPS, Radio, and Transponder. Don't wait until after you start taxiing as inevitably you'll forget something. Taking off with the wrong squawk code, coming up on the wrong departure frequency, and flying the wrong route on departure are all grounds for a deviation. You don't want to be fumbling around with those things after you take off. Inevitably this happens and you learn why it's a great idea not to let it happen. Another fun topic is a new clearance once airborne. This once happened to me no less than 4 times enroute. This is really where it pays to be skilled in copying down clearances, because if you think it's hard on the ground, wait until you're trying to copy down a clearance single pilot in the soup with no autopilot.
  15. I stopped in there a few days ago to pick up a passenger. I didn't eat, but noticed the restaurant is still active. I think it used to be the Blue Pig, but now it's some other BBQ joint.