Saturday, June 16, 2012

No-Go Markings

KFAM 161155Z AUTO 17004KT 10SM CLR 22/18

KFAM 161635Z AUTO 23012G17KT 10SM CLR 32/18 A3012

After reading On a Wing and a Whim's post about hangar rash, I thought it a good idea to paint guide lines and warning lines on the asphalt just outside my hangar.

I went flying this morning. When I finished and I was pulling the airplane back into the hangar, I stopped as the wingtips were even with the vertical I-beams that support the roof. I used a piece of rope to measure the distance from the I-beams to the wingtips, then took off about four inches for a buffer zone. I scratched a mark on the asphalt with a rock.

Then it was off to the hardware store for red paint, white paint and masking tape. I measured to the center and outlined a guide stripe for the tailwheel, then I measured for guide stripes for the mains. I measured the scratched-in markings for the wingtip warning stripes, they were pretty damn close to where the arithmetic said they should be. I laid out the stripes with masking tape and painted them.

As you can see, I was slightly off-center when I pulled the airplane in after my flight. As long as I keep the mains inside the red warning stripes, I'm not going to smack an I-beam with a wingtip.

Flying around here is a morning affair. It gets hot by mid-day. Even at 0700 local, it was 72 degrees this morning, it's now 90. It gets uncomfortable flying when it is that hot, at least down around a few thousand feet above ground. Better to be done flying by mid-morning. Fortunately, I have a four-legged furry alarm clock that'll get me up for a "dawn patrol" flight.

There has to be a decent restaurant at KDXE, which is about 72 miles south-southeast of here. I heard a number of airplanes calling in position reports on Unicom for that field. One morning I'll have to get up a little earlier and go check it out.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Saturday Morning

KFAM 021255Z AUTO 16003KT 10SM BKN100 10/08 A2998

There were a couple of decent fly-ins this weekend that I didn't make. The airplane had a bad tailwheel shimmy on the trip out. The mechanic here (MacAir) took a look at it-- his opinion was that some of the nuts on the tailwheel clamps were tired and needed to be replaced, which he did. I shot four landings this morning, including 3-point landings, and nary a shimmy.

It is a joy to once again live near the airport. And that shade-hangar is nice. A rain shower passed overhead as I was doing my pre-flight, which drove home that point.

Gas here is self-service, $5.24/gallon for 100 LL. The city also has a fuel truck for Jet A, for those who don't want to pump their own. I think that the truck is available during normal business hours during the work week, but since I don't burn Jet A, I haven't paid much attention to it. (Jet A is $4.80/gal.)

There is also at least one courtesy car, maybe two. If you fly in for lunch, I recommend the Factory Diner (7am to 2pm) in the Factory, Casa Sol (also in the Factory) or Bauhaus Kaffe, which is on the north side of the courthouse square.

My only gripe about the town is that I haven't found a good bookstore. But thanks, in part, to Amazon, I don't expect to find them.