Thursday, April 10, 2014


Base to Final at N47
Harry's hangar door was open but I didn't drive over there immediately. I went to Sally's hangar to open up and pull her out into the sunlight. I took the top cowling off and carefully placed it out of the way, then walked down the concrete taxi way and down the hill to see Harry. He is busy working on an old Warrior trying to get it airworthy again. His C172 is still in pieces but "Close to getting finished". His J3 isn't even on the RADAR yet. As we talked another customer came down the hill to discuss the news of the day. Harry kept puttering with his work as we continued to distract him. After awhile I went back to get my preflight started.

The temperature must have risen by 10°F by the time I got back. I had noticed a shimmy after landing and it had become more pronounced recently. I pulled Sally forward until I could get to the nose tire stem and put in 18PSI. It was low. I put 29PSI in each of the mains, they were also under inflated. I wish I would have done this work BEFORE putting her pants back on. I left the oil cooler baffle in place although the forecast says we should have a warming trend later this week. I hope so.

As we crossed the turf I could see the wind sock flapping. Mostly right down the runway and the golf course flags confirmed it was breezy. My cell phone failed to make a connection but XM weather showed winds from the north at less than 10kts. (I'm still considering my options for ADSB.) The takeoff was normal but I tightened my shoulder straps departing the pattern. It was bumpy.

Mostly direct right to left crosswinds at Pottstown Municipal. Gusty, bumpy, windy, but nothing out of limits. A few Pipers were up today just to make the pattern interesting. As I was on short final for landing #2 (or #3) I noticed somebody taking pictures. After a (below average) landing I decided to stop and introduce him to Sally. Al and his wife are former Navy Pilots. He is concerned about his medical and decided to let it lapse and explore Light Sport flying. (If Congress decides to eliminate the 3rd class medical he will re-evaluate his situation, but right now he is grounded.) I gave him the .50¢ tour, probably spending a half hour extolling the virtues of LSA and debunking some myths along the way. He is considering a Bristell and has spoken to the folks in Lancaster. I gave him my contact information and encouraged him to call if he had any questions.

So I buttoned Sally up and prepared to depart for home. Gusty. ASOS reported peak gusts at 17kts, still in my safety envelope but my warning flag was up.  Sally gave me a bumpy ride in the pattern but acted like a lady in the flare. No shimmy either.

Video here: Bouncy

The end.
Video Notes:

I tried to upload the raw edited file from Sony Movie Maker. It was a large file and very difficult to view in Screencast. Just not enough bandwidth.  I rendered it in Camtasia and found that viewing was much better, smoother. I may have lost a little fidelity but the results are fine.

I also had a problem viewing files in Screencast using Firefox. I was advised to clear the cache which solved the problem.

Reference: Here :

  • "Crosswind landing skills erode faster than almost any others. If I don’t fly for a month, the first thing I notice is how bad my crosswind landings are. It’s 80% physical and 20% mental, which is the exact opposite of most flying skills. You simply have to practice it continuously if you want to be proficient. If you’ve been out of the cockpit for a while, be sure to go out and practice crosswind landings before taking that big trip."

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