Today we’re talking weight and balance. Often something that us pilots of light aircraft forget to do before every flight but obviously a very important component of safe flight.
Cary Robins is the owner of American Aeronautics and his company markets weight and balance calculators. I wanted to find out why weight and balance is so important, about his company’s products and about his flying career too.
The aircraft that Andy and Sam will be flying to Australia
For today’s episode of Flying Podcast I’m speaking to Andy Hardy and Sam Kidd.
These two are planning a trip from the UK to Australia in Andy’s PA28 aircraft.
They have lots of flying experience and Andy has an IMC and a night rating but neither has been much further than central Europe.
The LAA Rally has come round again. Very often we’re scouting round looking for something really exciting to talk about on the UK airshow/rally scene. Luckily, this time the CAA has helped us out albeit at the very light end of the light aviation market. Over the coming weeks they’ll be consulting on a proposal to deregulate the single seat microlight market. So, if your new aircraft weighs in at less than 300kg (MAUW) and has only one seat, you’re away!
For today’s episode of Flying Podcast I went down to the Flying Show at Birmingham’s NEC. I had interviews lined up with Breezer UK, The Light Aircraft Company, Dave Sykes, GASCo and the Airspace & Safety Initiative. An interesting cross section of the people attending the show I think.
The show was pretty much as it had been in previous years, not overly busy but there were plenty of interesting folk to chat to. So all-in-all probably worth going down to if you’re into aviation. We arrived at 11.30 on the Sunday and the traffic into the NEC wasn’t too bad. The £10 parking fee is a bit steep but they have a bit of a monopoly going on there so we have to stump up the cash.
On today’s Flying Podcast we’ve got a pilot from ‘down under’. That’s Owen Zupp.
A couple of years ago, Owen flew a single engine light aircraft around Australia. I remember hearing about Owen’s exploits on the great Australian aviation podcast Plane Crazy Down Under so when Owen contacted me offering to come on to the podcast I jumped at the opportunity.
For his day job, Owen is a 737 pilot for a major Australian commercial airline company – no prizes for guessing who that might be – but in his spare time he puts his passion for aviation to good use. Not only has Owen written a book on a WWII RAF pilot but he’s also flown a Jabiru aeroplane around his homeland in order to raise money for an excellent cause; that being the Royal Flying Doctor Service. As these adventures spike my interest, it was primarily this project that I wanted to talk to Owen about.
In episode 51 of Flying Podcast I spoke to Andy Draper of the Light Aircraft Association about building your own aircraft. To get a broader appreciation of what the association does I was pointed in the direction of Brian Hope, editor of the LAA’s magazine ‘Light Aviation’.
First off I asked Brian to give me a potted history of the LAA. I knew that the group had previously been the PFA – Popular Flying Association – but I wasn’t aware that they’d had a previous incarnation.
For this episode of Flying Podcast I was off down to Turweston Aerodrome to meet Andy Draper of the Light Aircraft Association. Andy is the Design Engineer with the LAA and having joined from kitplane company, Europa, he now looks after the modification work for LAA aircraft but also oversees the ongoing airworthiness of all the approved types.
I was interested in finding out what the process was for building your own aircraft so who better to ask than Andy.
If you recognize Andy’s photo on the web site that’s because he was involved in the TV show `A Plane Is Born’ some years ago, helping Mark Evans build his Europa kit plane.
This podcast came about as a result of a conversation between myself and a fellow Barton aviator, Duncan Armstrong.
We were chatting about our flying experiences and I happened to mention that I’d kept a diary of how my flight training was progressing. As I’m a firm believer in learning from my mistakes I thought that a log of what happened and when, during my time in the left seat, would come in handy as my time as a pilot progressed.
I was contacted by some folks from Wakatipu Aero Club, down there in New Zealand, saying that they’d like to appear on the Podcast. One of their instructors is a chap called Alex Turnbull. He is originally from Morpeth in the North East of the UK and has travelled all the way to the other side of the world to pursue his dream of flying GA in a really interesting and challenging environment.
Quite by coincidence I recently put Google Analytics on to this web site and, after a month, it turns out that the Podcast has been listened to in 48 countries around the world. I couldn’t believe that people in China, or places like Indonesia and Russia actually download and listen to the Podcast but I guess that’s the power of podcasting and the internet and I shouldn’t be surprised to be contacted by aviators in New Zealand.
Nick Duriez and Mark Knowles, FISOs at Barton Airport
Today I’m visiting my old stomping ground of Barton Aerodrome to talk to one of the guys in the control tower. The chap that’s featuring on the podcast is Mark Knowles and if you’ve ever landed or taken off from Barton chances are you will have spoken to Mark at some point.
The first thing I asked Mark to do was to tell me about Barton, or City Airport, Manchester as it’s often called, and to tell me the type of air traffic control it has.
Mark started by describing the aerodrome. It’s a grass airfield near to Manchester with 8 runways and they operate a Flight Information Service under the title Barton Information.