Sunday, July 29, 2007

A neat Wellington aviation site

I was out at the aero club this afternoon, sitting around doing very little [mainly cruising YouTube for aeroplane videos...] when one of the members pointed out a site he runs:

I checked it out and this site includes streaming video of Wellington International Airport, and a live Tower frequency feed. Awesome! You may require a couple of plugins to be installed, but this should not be too big a hassle. Check it out.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

World's smallest twin engined aircraft?

Well, with a human pilot, almost certainly yes!

Here is a video from YouTube of the Cri Cri, a small twin engined, human piloted, aircraft, built and flown by an Air New Zealand B747 pilot. This video was taken at an airshow in New Zealand, and contains some interesting stats about the aircraft and it's performance. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Cessna 421C Golden Eagle

This picture is of a Cessna 421C Golden Eagle that was parked outside of Wellington Aero Club earlier today for refueling and a quick break for the pilot. It is operated by Air Manawatu as an air ambulance. I've never been inside a 421 before, but the pilot showed us in and pointed out some of the neat stuff in the cockpit.

The GPS unit [an Apollo MX20] was particularly interesting, with a very clear display, map overlays, terrain warning etc. The back of the airplane is equiped for a single patient and seating for medical staff.

Cessna 421C Golden Eagle


Surface wind 25 gusting 40 knots kinda explains it all...

Saturday, July 21, 2007

More practice

Went up this morning and the weather was fantastic. A slight breeze [5-6 knots], and smooth flying conditions. There was a lot of low cloud around the southern Wairarapa area, but the holes were vastly more than what I needed to do some practice. Another aircraft that was operating 3-4 miles east of me later reported seeing whales in Palliser Bay.

I managed 3 FLWOP exercises, a basic and an advanced stall, many turns [rate 1 through to steep/45 degrees AoB] before heading back to Wellington for a few circuits.

All in all, a fun day in the sky. I'll have to work hard at those turns [steep turns are a bit rusty], but my FLWOP and stalls seem to be OK. Circuits are OK also.

My BFR is scheduled for tomorrow [Sunday] afternoon, but it looks as though the weather is getting worse, so maybe it will have to be in a week or two instead.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

BFR time

I'm almost due for my BFR [Biennial Flight Review], so instead of a normal scenic I went up and did some practice. With a fight of just under an hour I managed two simulated FLWOP [Forced Landings With Out Power], a few turns and a couple of circuits.

Next Saturday I've got another flight. Hopefully I'll have time get all that in plus steep turns and some stalls. After that I should be ready for the BFR flight. Well see!

Anyway, here's a picture of an Ardmore Flying School C172R visiting Wellington Aero Club on its way to Christchurch. The C172R has a 160hp fuel injected engine and like all later model C172's flap is limited to 30 degress max. Vfe (10 degrees) is 110 knots with the remainder limited to 85 knots. I guess I kinda like the 'R' model as I did my C172 rating on this model a few years ago.


Thursday, July 12, 2007

Just found these

I just found these two pictures from my last flight [as a passenger]. The first is left base for runway 16. The second photo is just after takeoff. It's an old [World War One era] emplacement on the hills around Strathmore on the south westerm corner of the Miramar Peninsula. It's quite accessible from the ground and in fact, I've taken some really nice pictures of heavy metal on approach and departure from there in the past.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Video of a landing at Wellington

Here's a video of a landing at Wellington International. This was taken during a session of dual circuits. The landing looks a bit rougher than it was as I was holding the camera up at an awkward angle... such is life!

Pictures from around the circuit

Here are some more pictures from my flight in the back of the C172. This time I have some pictures from around the circuit. The first one is on final approach.

After the 3rd landing we had to stop, vacate left and taxi back to holding point 1 due the combination of wake separation from the previously departed aircraft and the need for other aircraft to land [hence we could not hold on the runway]. An Air New Zealand B737 came down the taxi way after us as we were waiting.

The next shot shows us mid left hand downwind. For those of you at other aerodromes, this might look a bit high and a bit far away from the runway. At Wellington our circuit is a little further away from the runway, and up to 1500' [instead of the normal 1000' AGL].

The last two pictures are a shot of Wellington Prison [north end of the Miramar Peninsular], and [I could not resist it], a shot of a motionless windsock at Wellington... some would say this is almost unheard of!

Final approachB737 on the taxiwayWe got to go before the B737Mid downwindWellington PrisonWindsock standing still!

Now I'm the SLF

I had a booking for a flight yesterday, but the weather was probably going to make me look like an amateur. Today's weather was fantastic [as you'll see], but alas, no booking. I have had the privillage of sitting in the back of the Club's C172 with a student undergoing dual circuit training. Awesome!

What follows are a few of the photos I took. These consist of the two pilots, lining up on Wellington's runway 16 then a couple of shots of the Eastern [main commercial] Apron.

Two pilotsLining up Wellington runway 16Eastern ApronEastern Apron

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Suspicious package at Tauranga Airport

A suspicious package closed Tauranga Airport for a few hours today. Once the experts were bought in, the package was nothing to worry about. Details are on the Stuff website, as follows:

Tauranga is one of the busiest airports in the country. Traffic mainly consists of light GA aircraft [much of it VFR and IFR training aircraft], but also includes a small number of scheduled IFR Air Transport flights [you'll notice that the Stuff article only mentions about 10 scheduled flights]

There have got to be quite a number of extremely hacked off [but relieved] people out there...

Air2There is here

Air2There had their Piper PA-31-350 parked up at Wellington today. This particular aircraft has a long history in New Zealand, having been registered to Mount Cook Airline in June 1982. There have been a succession of owners since then until Air2There acquired the aircraft in 2004.

Air2There is based at Paraparaumu Airport, and has regular flights to/between Paraparaumu, Wellington, Blenheim and Nelson.

Air2There Piper PA-31-350Air2There Piper PA-31-350Air2There Piper PA-31-350

Hello Nico

I was out at the Club today... nothing much happening, except low cloud, rain, more rain, and even more rain. Nico asked when I was going to put a picture of him on this site...! This is the best one I could get of him :-) That's his favourite sun umbrella [a bit optimistic I think]. Beautiful.