Monday, August 31, 2020

An ORCa at Wellington

A regular visitor nowadays is Air Kaikoura Aero Club, who operate a couple of Gippsland GA8, including this one, ZK-ORC.

 Air Kaikoura have operated a VFR air transport operation between Kaikoura and Wellington for the past few months, in addition to their whale spotting operation.

Gippsland GA8, ZK-ORC, operated by Air Kaikoura

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Cobwebs... gone

Last weekend I had a quick trip to Masterton in Nanchang CJ6A, ZK-MAO. The weather was fantastic and the flying smooth.

One of the things I like about how we operate the Nanchang is that we have an Airswitch, instead of the typical Hobbs.

In most light aircraft, the Hobbs meter automatically starts ticking over soon after the engine starts. This is fine, and it allows for aircraft hire rates to appear lower, but it can cause some people [idiots all of them...] to rush the pre-takeoff procedures as they are paying the entire time the engine is running.

With an Airswitch, the timer only starts when your airspeed increases [typically on the takeoff roll] and finishes as you slow down after landing. The benefit of this is that pilots have no need to rush their start up, taxi, runup and shutdown procedures. This is particularly important in an aircraft with a larger engine, like the Nanchang with a 9 cylinder radial engine that needs time to warm up and cool down.

Anyway, the Airswitch time was only 0.6 hours (36 minutes) each way. On the trip to Masterton, this include an overhead rejoin, a touch and go and a second circuit before landing. On the way home, this included a look at the Orongorongo valley then back around to look at Mount Matthews.

 At owners rates, this is a fairly cheap day out 😀

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

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Kapiti Airport at risk of closure!

Kapiti Airport is at risk of closing. This would be a travesty for the local community, the local aero club, aircraft owners, maintenance providers, and airline operators!

The loss of Kapiti Airport may reduce safety as it is usually the best-placed airport before or after heading across Cook Strait. Closing the airport puts locals out of work and irreparably impacts Kapiti Districts Aero Club!

Let's stop this by supporting the retention of the airport, saving local jobs and employers!

Unfortunately I can't embed the video, but here's a link to watch the recent news article.