Sunday, October 10, 2021

A quick flight with some new gear

I had a quick flight around Wellington today, mainly to test out my upgraded iPad Mini 6, which arrived in the last week. The software is Avplan-efb, with all the official maps and AIP documents installed.

While I didn't expect any issues, I figured it was a smart idea to test it while I am in familiar airspace and with some backup maps (both the printed variety and Avplan installed on my phone).

No problems of course and it was a nice day for a flight. Out via the Owhiro Sector and in via the Ward Sector and a couple of touch and goes to finish off the flight. Today's flight was in the Cessna 172N, ZK-EKE. Hopefully next weekend I'll have another flight in the Nanchang.

Thursday, September 30, 2021

San Antionio Sewer Pipe parked up at Wellington

Last weekend, this Air Chathams-operated Fairchild SA227-AC Metroliner, ZK-CID, was parked up at the aero club.

It has been many years since I last flew on one of these - it was in the days of Origin Pacific from memory, although I also flew on them when operated by the now shut down Eagle Airways.

Fairchild SA227-AC Metroliner, ZK-CID, operated by Air Chathams

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

A new arrival

Here is a new arrival for Wellington Aero Club - it's another PA38-112, ZK-JHF. This aircraft is owned by WASSI, but will be used by Wellington Aero Club when not required for the Walsh Memorial Scout Flying School.

Piper PA38-112, ZK-JHF, operated by Wellington Aero Club

Thursday, September 23, 2021

The Desert Road Corridor and on to Taupo

I have only been up the Desert Road corridor once before, so it was good to see it again. Last time was clear skies. This time we flew up and back down with a bit more cloud and a bit of rain, although neither of them affected the flights.

It's a magic flight along this corridor, squashed between pieces on military airspace over the Waiouru training area, although I wouldn't want to be here in low cloud or poor visibility! In these first two photos, it's only the tops of the mountains that are obscured. The corridor itself was quite ok.

Mount Ruapehu

Mount Ngauruhoe and Mount Tongariro

A few nautical miles north of the Desert Road corridor is the town of Turangi. There is a small grass airfield [ICAO designator is NZTN] just out of town, as shown in the following photo. I haven't been in there yet - maybe another day.

NZTN - Turangi airfield

The ultimate destination for this flight [prior to returning to Wellington] was Taupo airport. The pilot who flew up and another passenger picked up a Piper PA38-112 for the return trip and I got to fly the Cessna 172N, ZK-EKE home.

NZAP - Taupo airport

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Departing Wellington, flying overhead Paraparaumu

You may have seen my last post about going for a fly last Saturday. In case nobody has guessed the location of the mystery aerodrome, I won't mention the flight's destination, but here are some more photos from the flight.

I was a passenger on the outbound flight and this gave me plenty of time to take a few photos. First up are of the main terminal and apron at Wellington, a couple of photos from the Hutt Valley, followed by a less usual angle on Paraparaumu - this was taken as we prepared to go controlled VFR [visual flight rules in controlled airspace] to to Palmerston North and beyond.

Anyway, I hope you like the photos.

Main apron at NZWN - Wellington International

View from the Hutt Valley looking south

View from the Hutt Valley looking north

I particularly like this view of Paraparaumu. It not only shows the layout of the aerodrome, but also shows the remnants of the old style "A" layout of the past, along with the encroachment of the township. From memory, when I first flew into NZPP, there were two sealed runways available - the current one plus the old vectors on the right hand side of the picture.

NZPP - Paraparaumu aerodrome


Sunday, September 19, 2021

Take a guess. Where is this?

Last Saturday I got to go flying. Firstly as a passenger to another aerodrome, followed by me flying the aircraft home. We came across this strip of seal somewhere. No, we did not land there.

So, time for a quick competition.

  • Where is this runway is located?
  • Extra points if you know what its ICAO designator is/was
  • Extra extra points if you know who the operator is/was

One point for each correct answer for a total of three points on offer. No prize, except the respect and admiration of your fellow pilots!

No clues! 😁

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Lockdowns and no flying until recently

Things have been slow on the posting front recently. Until recently, all of the New Zealand was subject to a Covid19 lockdown [Auckland continues to be locked down as of writing this], so it was only last weekend that I was able to go out and have a flight.

The past couple of days I was able to get out for a trip up to Whanganui, and while there, I popped into the Wanganui Aero Club [Hi Jonathan!] for a quick look and a chat and got these photos.

The first is a Wanganui Aero Club operated Cessna 150H, ZK-CTF, with the student about to head off for some solo circuits.

Cessna 150H, ZK-CTF, operated by Wanganui Aero Club

This second photo is perhaps a little rarer - Air Chathams had a Saab-Scania SF340, ZK-KRA, off on a trip to Auckland. Rarer with Auckland still in lockdown, though once that lifts, domestic flying will get back to what has become the new normal fairly quickly.

Saab-Scania SF340, ZK-KRA, operated by Air Chathams

Sunday, August 15, 2021

Wet and windy Wellington

Here is a brief video from Wellington airport after the wind turned to the south and increased in strength and the rain set in.


#CantBeatWellingtonOnANiceDay 😂

Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Currency and ballast

On Saturday. I realised yesterday that I had not flown for about a month. Furthermore I wasn't current on the C172. So, rather than a couple of circuits, I went for a dual ride to do some turns, stalls, a FLWOP, low flying and a rejoin. Fun times and I feel rather more current now.

Following this I got to be ballast on a type rating flight, as part of a MAUW [Maximum All Up Weight] check. Again, fun times, and it's always good to sit in the back as someone else is flying the plane! The aircraft was Wellington Aero Club's Piper PA28-161, ZK-KAT.

Here are a few pictures on my ballast ride.





Next weekend should be interesting also, as I'm going to fly a Piper PA38-112. Fun times indeed!

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

More Nanchang flying

Last Saturday afternoon I had the opportunity to go flying in the Nanchang CJ6A, ZK-MAO. The weather was nice enough, but a bit lumpy in the Southern Wairarapa with mild and fairly consistent turbulence from Turakirae up to Lake Onoke.

Still, it was a fun flight of just over 30 minutes. We're still running the engine a little harder as part of the run-in, so I was cruising at 270-280 km/hr [around 145-150 knots]. Still, fuel consumption was about normal for a slightly lower power setting [mind you, I did lean the mixture], so I can't wait to see what it settles at when we are back to normal power settings in a few hours.

Anyway, a couple of photos. The first is looking north over Lake Wairarapa. The second is looking to the east. Both of these photos were taken at around 1,100' AMSL. The photo was taken on my phone, hence the artefact from the prop interacting with the camera sensor...



Sunday, July 11, 2021

Cessna 182 at Wellington

Today's photo is of a Cessna 182T, ZK-JLR, which is operated by Ragged Point Ltd of a Nelson address. This was seen at Wellington on Saturday afternoon.

I think a Cessna 182 would be a really nice aircraft to learn to fly... maybe one day!

Cessna 182T, ZK-JLR, operated by Ragged Point Ltd

Tuesday, July 06, 2021

A couple of rides on Sunday afternoon

Last Sunday afternoon I was able to go on a couple of quick flights, both times as a passenger. The first was a ride up to Paraparaumu with Vincent flying the Cessna 172N ZK-EKE.  The ride home was in a Piper PA28-161, ZK-KAT, courtesy of Pete.

Both of these were fun and as always, it's great to be able to sit back and relax while someone else does the flying 😁

I've got just a couple of photos of the flight back to Wellington as we raced the daylight to get home about 15 minutes before ECT [evening civil twilight... or night time].


Sunday, July 04, 2021

PA28 at Wellington

Today's visitor was this nice Piper PA28-151, ZK-DBW. This aircraft is registered to the Canterbury Warrior Syndicate, and has been upgraded to a 180hp engine. Good to see you this afternoon Andreas! 😀

Piper PA28-151, ZK-DBW, operated by Canterbury Warrior Syndicate

Thursday, July 01, 2021

The carburettor!

It's been a few weeks since I posted - mainly weather and general busyness, but I hope to fix that in a couple of days.

Meanwhile, here's a very very interesting video on the fascinating subject of carburettors! Most of the aircraft I fly have a carburettor, and while the basic concepts always made sense, this video from Smarter Every Day takes it to a new level.

The explanations are interesting enough, but the use of high-speed footage just blows my mind as it shows fuel and air being mixed and sucked along toward an engine. The video is almost 25 minutes, but if you have even a passing interest in aircraft engines with carburettors, or small engines in lawn mowers etc for that matter, this is a compelling and very interesting video!

Enjoy the video!

BTW - while not covered in the video, it's easy to visualise how carb icing occurs and why it's important to be on top of it.

Thursday, June 03, 2021

Another Nanchang flight today :-)

It has been a fantastic day in Wellington today... the start of winter has come with light winds and blue skies... combine that with a week off work and it's a great day for a flight.

I took the Nanchang CJ6A for a flight around the southern Wairarapa area - around one hour to see most of the sights... nice.

The engine is still being run in, so I was operating it at slightly higher power settings which increases fuel consumption and a little extra speed - can't wait until we can get it back to normal power settings to operate it most efficiently.

Anyway, a couple of photos - the instrument panel then me squinting into the sun 😃

Nanchang CJ6A, ZK-MAO, operated by Wellington Aero Club

Squinting into the bright winter sun