Cup of fresh coffee in hand I sat down to look at the weather on the computer. Local airports were reporting 5000' overcast, winds easterly at 10 knots, temperatures around freezing. It was worth going out to the airport to take a look.
I parked near the door of my hangar because the ice on the shady side of the barn looked treacherous. Another sip of hot coffee before I got out to walk the taxi way. The concrete was clear except for some small stones and gravel. The sod was firm, frozen actually. I kicked a few protruding worrisome pieces out of the way as I walked to the approach end of the runway. Doable.
I walked back to the hangar and opened the doors. "Lets go flying Sally."
This would be Virb Flight #2. My objectives were to calibrate the camera to the airplane systems to see how far off the camera might be. The real purpose of the flight was to knock some rust off of the pilot and exercise the airplane. When I climbed in I had the strange feeling again, I had been grounded too long to feel comfortable. I turned the key. It took more than 3 props to get started but once she did I felt at ease. I remembered how much I like this.
The flight into Pottstown Municipal went well, but I was behind the airplane and my landings were sh...lousy. The high work went well. Sally's systems are as they should be. Everything seems to be working after the long hibernation. The entry and landings at Butter Valley went well, but I was behind the airplane and my landings were cra...lousy.
I think I was smiling the whole time.
- I had a lot of problems with the Virb Edit software for Windows 7. It wasn't until I down loaded the latest version (2.4.0) that everything started to work as advertised.
- I think the video and audio are great. I'm disappointed that I can't boost the brightness of the Dynon displays to have them captured. This is not a unique problem of the Virb and I'll continue to try and improve my technique to make this better.
- I have permanently fixed the Virb cradle to the headset rack in the middle of the canopy rail. So far this seems to work well.
- I experimented with a number of different "overlays", Garmin's term for displaying the GPS data. I haven't decided on any favorites yet.
- I experimented with two different zoom settings and will stick with the default "Ultra Zoom".
- I need a haircut.
I was at first disappointed. The Altitude, Heading, and Airspeed were not consistent with what I was seeing on my instruments. Dummy. The camera is just another GPS unit. Altitude is really referenced to a mathematical geoid, based on a standard day. That won't be close. The Heading is what the airplane is flying, I should be comparing with the track from my 696. Similarly I should be looking at groundspeed, not airspeed, to make my comparisons.
All Virb Videos can be viewed here.