Friday, August 31, 2007

Part Aeroplane, Part Banana

Here's a picture of a Partenavia P68 [not sure if it's a B or C model] that was parked at Wellington outside the Aero Club recently. This particular aircraft [I missed the rego] is operated by Air New Plymouth.

The Partenavia is also affectionately [???] known as the Part Banana. I believe this is in reference to the shape of the lower fuselage, which, if you are somewhat inebriated, may appear slightly banana shaped.

The Partenavia has a reputation as a fairly easy to fly twin, and is therefore popular as an initial twin trainer. Obviously, like any twin [or any aircraft for that matter] the P68 can and will "bite" if abused.

Partenavia P68

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Wellington Scenic

I had the pleasure of accompanying a pilot today as a safety pilot [CAR Part 91.125] while the PIC [Pilot in Command] was practising his instrument flying [simulated of course!]. In order to keep things safe we flew to somewhere that was open and unobstructed [over the water to the north west of Wellington] and the PIC practised some turns [DI and compass], climbs and descents before heading back.

In between spending a lot of time with my eyes outside and providing some headings for the pilot to fly, I managed to get some reasonable photos of the places we flew.

Top to bottom are:
Mana Island from the north
Mana Island from the west, looking towards Paremata
Petone/Lower Hutt looking towards Wellington City [center, background]
Moa Point rocks [right base for runway 34]
Moa Point looking toward runway 34

Mana IslandMana Island towards ParemataPetone towards Wellington CityMoa PointMoa Point and runway 34

Westpac Rescue Helicopter

This is a picture of the Wellington based Westpac Rescue Helicopter spooling up for departure. The picture is a little faded as it was shot through the old perspex of a Piper Tomahawk as we taxied past [I was a pax on this flight].

This chopper is a Kawasaki BK117 B-2, and is equiped specifically for rescue/medivac operations.

Kawasaki BK117 B-2

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Convair 580 at Wellington

The Convair 580 is an awesome looking beast. Everything about it looks large. It sits well off the ground, seems to have long wings, it has two big turboprop engines, and what can I say about those props??!!! I'm not sure that they would be that efficient, but they are large! There's not much ground clearance on the props, so this would have to be a beast for fairly smooth runways and taxiways only. Convairs are also noisy and smokey [nice!] - just a shame it was not starting up while I was there!

This particular example is still doing ATO's [Air Transport Operations] around New Zealand and is operated by Pionair Adventures Ltd.

The first picture shows off the wingspan of this magnificent aircraft. The second is a front-quarter view and the third is a closeup of the nose and those huge paddles [note the prop ground clearance]!

Pionair Convair 580Pionair Convair 580Pionair Convair 580

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Immaculate PA-18 Super Cub

I went out to the Aero Club this afternoon, not expecting to be flying [The C172 was away with other Club aircraft in Hokitika], but also not expecting to see this: An immaculate Piper PA-18 Super Cub which had stopped off for a short time on it's way from Omaka to Masterton.

I briefly spoke with the owner, who says that this example has about 12 hours on the clock since a complete refurbish. The aircraft was immaculate inside and out, down to the smallest details. Even the instrumentation was all new so obviously no expense spared! Fantastic!

PA-18 Super CubPA-18 Super CubPA-18 Super CubPA-18 Super Cub

Sunday, August 05, 2007

All done

I completed the paperwork today for my BFR, so that's been signed off for another 2 years.

Yippee :-)

Saturday, August 04, 2007

RNZAF Boeing 757 at Wellington

This is a quick video of an RNZAF [Royal New Zealand Air Force] Boeing 757 landing at Wellington. The B757 is a largest type to regularly operate into Wellington.

BFR almost done and an Aerospatiale AS 355 F1

I went up for the flying component of the BFR [Biennial Flight Review] today, and it all went well enough.

Actually, it's probably one of the very best FLWOP [Forced Landing With Out Power] exercises I've ever managed! The EFATO [Engine Failure After Takeoff] exercise that followed worked out well also. Perhaps I did not need to be quite so nervous about this flight? In addition to all this, we did a max performance takeoff, some turns, stalls, low flying, precautionary landing, followed by rejoining the Wellington circuit, some circuit work [including flapless landing and precision approach and landing] as well as some other bits and pieces.

Now just the paperwork to finish off tomorrow...

Anyway, before the BFR I got a snap of this Aerospatiale AS 355 F1 departing Wellington.

Aerospatiale AS 355 F1

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

An online game

Click the link for an online copter game. Rules are simple - left-click for up, release for down. Don't hit anything!

Very addictive!