Sep 25th

BAR-ROOM!

By monty stone

i wasn't sure whether to blog this or not, but apart from me  showing my pathetic ignorance about such things (as well as many others!) here goes. hoping that others out there in 'flex-wing flying-thingy' land might learn from any advice from the 'dear abby' of trikers, you know who i mean!  i recently bought a 2002 aircreation fun 14 / 447 trike. after i cleaned the seagull crap off it i flew it.     it,( or i do) has a bar position problem, at trim , hands off level altitude the bar is WAY forward, so far in fact my arms are locked, making turns 'difficult'.  the  'suggestion bar' is only six inches from the 'down-thingamy ' tube. i've looked at videos on line with pilots flying identical trikes, relaxed, arms bent, smoking cigars, or eating peanut butter sammiches, with the bar halfway in the available space. i've stuffed a big cushion behind me which helps a bit, but i don't know of any trike that comes with a big cushion, so that ain't the answer! it had a ' probably water-logged- brs' mounted behind the mast, under the engine which i took off, i weighed the front wheel weight on ground, with and without chute, me not in it and the needle barely moved, and some of those intrepid pilots i viewed had chutes, some didn't, so i don't believe thats the answer. the wing is mounted as far back as it can go, (fast position?), i tried it in the middle of the three holes, if any thing a bit worse! everything seems to be assembled correctly. no parts left over!  unless i have the wing on backwards! (how do you do a weight and balance on a trike?) none of the trikes i've flown have trimmed so far forward , so i've never had to fight this problem before. i did notice that the control bar is'nt 90deg from center line, it's a few degrees twisted to the right, but it flys straight, no signs of damage. it has 83hrs on it . i ain't no ' test-pilut', so i don't really know what to try next! hugs n farts, ............freazier nutszoff                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ps, don't anyone out there call me 'tyrannosaurus arms' my buds here in 'rain country' are already using that one!

Sep 12th

Active Hang Block

By Rizwan Bukhari

Hi all,

 

I have a question. On the Northwing website, they sell active Hang Blocks (pictured below). I don't know anything about them, other than that the A frame attaches directly to the Hang Block.

 

According to Northwing,

"The new Active Hang Block provides even more positive stability in rough air, requiring less control-input from the pilot, and also gives lighter handling pressures while initiating turns".

Does it really make a lot of difference. If anyone is using them then I would like to hear your comments and views about it.

 

Regards,

 

Rizzy

 

North Wing - Active Hang Block improves handling even more!

Sep 12th

Your favorite Compass?

By roger larson

Looking for thoughts on compasses used on trikes.  Seems like i have seen a lot of marine type compasses used?

So what is your favorite type of compass?  

Your favorite Brand?  Model?  Where do i get it.

How do you attach it?

 

Thanks  in advance for anyone that will give me input. 

 

 

Sep 5th

I am Yuri

By Bryan Tuffnell

I’d tried this game before, sneaking out while most people were snoozing to try a flight above cloud in the blackness of a moonless, mostly overcast night. I’d rolled onto Rangiora’s 25 near midnight, and sat there for a number of minutes before bottling out. Too much unknown, too many risks I couldn’t quantify.

The idea wouldn’t go away, and whenever I got the chance on land, I’d get above cloud on a pitch-black night to check how identifiable the horizon was. Eventually it seemed doable, but it was nearly a full year later before the combination of nearly complete low overcast and no moon presented itself.

Take Two. We rolled well after the witching hour, but with a decent bite of the night to savour before dawn. A few specks of starlight fell through an inky overcast - not much, but just enough to give us a horizon and something to aim for - so we bored up through a tiny break in the murk and broke into outer space above. Nothing below, just blackness. Only stars above. And it was wild.

Starlight spanned the night between the horizons, and any trace of the planet beneath was obliterated by the cloud beneath. We went inland, climbed up and up until I got the jitters, three miles into the night sky, feeling like the only living thing in the universe. It was a night from a Kubrick movie, a scene in a diminished key, a bizarre inversion of normality, somber, wonderful, a little spooky, surreal. This wasn’t flying a trike, it was riding a spaceship in orbit; the absence of stars providing the only refence for the horizon. For an hour I was Yuri Gagarin, alone in space, and I loved it, but oh the stress, the concentration…

The first blush of morning took away that uncomfortable and somewhat nerve-wracking edge and provided its own otherworldliness by illuminating the cloud from underneath but leaving me and Penrod in a battleship grey world. We found another hole in the Stygian gloom and descended through vaporous severed goats' heads and damp Mount Rushmores and into brightness and warmth. The low angle of the sunlight caught strange fibrous filaments and delicate cobwebs falling from the base of the clouds and lit them with oranges and reds. We did a little aerial boogey between them, I dragged my fingers through them. A few Zen cartwheels later we set down on my favourite beach. A siren song of surf was playing. I looked at Penrod's empty back seat which just looked wrong somehow - something was missing, so I put my clothes there and went for a bitterly cold swim. Home at 0900.

 

Not a recommended way of flying a trike, a bit of a stretch of safety… but sometimes you’ve just got to dance.

Aug 30th

New Aeros Dealership located in Idaho

By Rizwan Bukhari

 

Hi all,

 

I want to let all of you know that we just recently got the dealership for Aeros Trikes and Wings. We are located in Boise, Idaho and operate out of Caldwell, ID airport.

Aeros makes some of the best trikes and wings. They manufacture Profi TL wing and Ant trike.

 

Please check our website

www.trikeflyer.com

 

Feel free to browse the website, your helpful suggestions and comments are always welcome.

 

We are really excited about this opportunity. And would love to get you your next Aeros Trike or Wing. We will be getting our first Profi TL wing pictured below and we are very excited about it.

 

We will also help you in learning how to fly trikes by either assisting you getting qualified CFIs near you or here in Idaho.

 

You can email us at info@trikeflyer.com

or call us at 208-985-9895 for any questions or a quote.

 

Regards,

 

Trikeflyer.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aug 24th

Sport Pilot Checkride and Flight Review book updated to V4

By Paul Hamilton

 

http://www.trikepilot.com/members/profile/273/pictures/25864/2

I just updated my Checkride book and items 1, 2, and 3 might be of interest to trike pilots

The following items was updated from version 3:

 

1. For a Flight Review, a Proficiency Check now counts as a flight review per 61.56(d). Example: Private pilot airplane adds a WSC trike endorsement per 61.325 with a proficiency check. This now counts as a flight review.

 

2. WSC trike spiral recovery added to Emergency Procedures.

 

3. Flight Following communications examples now added to Airport Operations Radio Communications.

 

4. Updates of what to study and what not to study to for the Airplane Flying Handbook new version 8083-3B and Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge new version 8083-25B    

 

Aug 23rd

Lazy Eight maneuver

By Doug Boyle

The Manufacturer's limitations on pitch and bank are +/- 30 degrees and +/- 60 degrees, respectively.  The FAR's also state that a parachute while be donned when exceeding the same limits.  Thus, this discussion will not delve into aerobatic flight which is prohibited by the manufactures of Trikes and further restrained through the FAR's.

With that being said, I'd like to entertain the notion of using the Lazy Eight maneuver in Advanced Trike training.  As a Commercial Pilot program training exercise used in General Aviation, this maneuver can aid the Master Trike pilot in "becoming one" with his/her aircraft.  Furthermore, it can encompass the "new" training requirement of Spiral Dive Recovery in the discussion of avoidance, entry, and exit.  Unusual Attitudes will glove into the discussion and demonstration, as well.

Lazy Eight maneuvers involve maximum pitch and bank attitudes, in intervals, as a 180 degree turn is completed in both directions.  When done correctly they provide the feeling of "dancing with the wind".  From level flight the turn is begun with a progressive bank that maximizes at the 90 degree point and minimizes at the 180 degree point.  Pitch is progressive,as well, and maximizes at the 45 degree point and becomes neutral at the 90 degree point.  At the 135 degeee point the pitch is at its lowest as you're reducing your bank.  At the 180 degree point all is back to normal and we roll and pitch into the opposite direction. 

Begun at cruising rpm and level flight the goal is to return to the original speed and altitude without varying your power.  You learn to trade your airspeed in pitch control while simultaneously banking/unbanking your wing.  During the training the pilot will be exposed to "unusual attitudes" and "uncoordinated flight", until the practice concludes with the knowledge and skillful application of "aviation artistry".

To keep the pilot from getting anxious, begin with normal pitch and banks in the execution/demonstration.  Work up to the limits based upon your student's reaction. If you choose to delve deeper into this precision flight regime, try it with power off (idle) and compare the altitude loss with the completion of each maneuver.  Have fun but ALWAYS afford yourself the proper airspace and altitude to stay safe.  Clearing turns are a MUST!  Let's go fly...."slipping the surly bonds of Earth".

Doug Boyle

Aug 17th

Paraglider dashboard, must have FREE Android cell phone app

By jeff trike

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.eb.ohrh.parawind.free&hl=en

I downloaded this app and took it out for a test flight this morning.  It is fantastic.  It was developed by a paraglider pilot, but works great on my trike.  It has all the usual features, like altitude, ground speed, moving map display.  I already had this capability, but the paraglider dashboard does something I have not found in any other apps.  It estimates the wind vector in real time while you are flying from the gps groundspeed measurements alone.

Years ago I had done something simliar for a work application, so I have a guess at how it works.   When you fly in circle with you drift downwind. And if you plot your velocity east, vs velocity north, you get a circle with the radius of the circle equal to your airspeed, and the center of the circle offset from zero  by the east and north component of the wind.  You don't need a full circle, a 90 degree arc has enough data to estimate the wind. And paraglider dashboard does this continually, plotting your recent east and north components in one of its displays. When a decent arc or circle is displayed, you get good wind estimates. New data is plotted with big dots, old data with smaller dots.  If you fly straight for a long time, the estimates degrade, but as long as you have a decent arc or circle in the display, you get a good wind estimate.

It displays the data in metric or english units.   It has a nice variometer display.  It logs your tracks and has a good moving map display.  You could use this as your primary gps navigation device.  It is really well done. 

The unique feature is the wind estimator.  

And the app is FREE with no advertisments.

Jeff

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aug 12th

Defensive Flying

By jeff trike

We have all heard of defensive driving, do small things all the time to reduce risk while driving.   This is a stream of conciousness blog of defensive flying techniques I do to minimize risk while flying my trike.   Please add to the list, 

  1. Engine warm up.   It is good for the engine, and if your engine is having problems, them happen now, while you are on the ground instead of the air.  I do something that is frowned on by some, but I not without some thought.  Before flight, I push my trike to the edge of the ramp, where no casual observer should be able to get to the prop.  Turn on the strobes and start the engine sitting outside my trike.  Then I back away and let it run.  I have a clear view of the engine to check for any problems in the carbs, coolant leak, etc.  I in front of the nose on my trike and put on my flight suit so I can keep an eye on things.  Then I do one last check for any engine leaks.
  2. Run through a short checklist one last time before taxing out.  Visor down?  Helmet strap?  Seatbelt.  I still manage to somehow takeoff with my helmet strap or seatbelt unbuckkled about once a year.   Don't be in a rush.
  3. Always do a touch and go before leaving the pattern.  A large fraction of problems happen in the first 5 - 10 minutes.  If they are gonna happen, let them happen in the pattern.
  4. Slowly accelerate on takeoff.   Don't blast off.  If something is going to shake off, let it happen while your wheels are on the ground.
  5. If something is wrong, land and fix it.  Radio adjustments, camera batteries, etc, etc, etc.  Don't screw around with it while flying if landing is an easy option.
  6. Always do a radio check before takeoff.   Usually someone is in the pattern and will gladly oblige, and you give them a radio check too. 
  7. In nice conditions, all your landings should be power off.  The only time I use gas for a stabilized approach is if it is really gusty or cross wind and I want to be able to work the whole length of runway to land.
  8. Aim for the touchdown spot instead of the numbers.  That way you can land short and you'll realize it.   If you always go for the numbers, you will cheat and use gas to hit them, and you will never realize how bad you are as setting up your final glide.  
  9. Don't assume you have radio contact in the pattern.  Fly predictably in case your push-to-talk is broken, the radio 1/2 switch is set on the wrong radio, your antenna cable is loose or one of the dozen ways your radio will fail.  My radio has a red LED that comes on when it transmits.  Seeing that is a good sign.  If the other pilot in the pattern does not respond, chances are your radio is off, but it could be his too.  Fly predictably, always entered on the downwind leg, use the preferred runway if winds allow, no mid-field takeoffs, announce your position and altitude in the pattern.
  10. Flying low is fun and potentially.  If you are down to 100 ft or less, be wary of powerlines.  Almost all dirt or paved roads have powerlines along side them.  
  11. Always top off your gas tank before leaving the hangar.  It will save you time the next time you fly, and you will always have gas.
  12. Rig up a sight gauge for the gas tank on your trike.  You want to be able to trust it with your life.
  13. Have multiple ways to estimate remaining fuel.  I have four:  1) sight gauge, 2) fuel float sensor, 3) fuel flow accumulator, 4) my watch.  
  14. Fly with a friend.  If something goes wrong, he can call for help quickly and save your life.  Your survival odds just increased by a factor of 10000.
  15. Get a SPOT or Delorme Inreach or something like it.  Your family will be able to see if your spot is moving which means you haven't crashed.
  16. Do push your envelope.  Don't always fly in the first hour of daylight.  Someday you find yourself in less than ideal condtions and you want this to be a minor irritaion, not a life or death beyond you capabilities situation.
  17. Install carb heat on your engine.  I have always on carb heat that uses heater blocks after the venturi on the carburators.
  18. Get a radio that can scan, load up all the 122.xxx CTAF frequencies, and let it scan while you fly.   You will pick up other traffic and stay clear.
  19. Get a transponder.  The best safety equipment you can get for your trike.  I think far better than a BRS.  I had 3 sort of scary potential mid-airs at low altitude before I got a transpoder.  None since in the past 10 years.  

  That's all I have for now, Please add your defensive flying techniques to the list

 

 

 

Aug 10th

hirth versus rotax

By monty stone

queen victoria was 'gone' so it had to be in the present century i convinced my wife we HAD to go to sun n fun florida, no mean jaunt from seattle, like driving from scotland to bumfuk, egypt. on a powered parachute stand they had 65 hp hirths for $3000. fuel injection, electric start, pru 1 yr warranty and 1000 hr tbo! thus began several years of misery, and 3 emergency landings. i performed the run-in EXACTLY per the mfrs instructions . the first problem was early on, the engine wouldn't rev past 3500. it was only after me sucking and blowing in the vent line on the f.i. control unit the rpms shot up to7000! the unit was programmed too rich. the first engine out was at about 12 hrs, inc 10 hrs ground run, as per the hirth instr. i was able to land out on camano island wa and tlr it home. the mag side inner main brg had locked. up due to the ball cage having been spot welded together, instead of a delrin cage. hirth īrefused any warranty help, and i was busy grabbing all the used parts i could  find, i would be needing them! i did ship my crank to germany for possible warranty re-consideration, they 'lost' it. my next engine out with this unit  was around 200hrs when the fan belt shredded, the cyl hd temps skyrocketted and while descending a spark plug, with its lead flew past my head, taking the puny 10 mm thread with it., i had to set it down in snake infested scrub land in az, and stumble through half mile to a road. the next, and last engine out was again the mag side inner brg ball cage having broken up, locking the crank.(different crank and case!) i published tthis misshap on ttps. to sum up, the 1000hr tbo is nothing but a sales dept lie. the design flaws are many and even though 'on paper' it looks lovely, my experience is not a 'lovely' one. the us importer, mat, did everything he could to help, tthough not free! but corporate hirth sucks! i may have skipped over other 'problems with this engine, but unless you enjoy a challenget, 'relax with rotax'.                              freazier ballszoff                                                                                                                                                          ps, having read larrys comment i remember now the crankcase was cast styrofoam, my pru bolts all stripped out, totally unpleasant.pps, is anyone out there still flying with this engine? hello , hello.