Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Heat is Off

KFAM 151415Z AUTO 12006KT 10SM CLR M04/M07 A3038

I've been trying to fly at least once a week and shoot a few landings in the process. But not so much, now. When it gets cold, preheating is necessary. Standing a safety watch while the preheater runs isn't my idea of fun anymore, especially on days when it takes 45 minutes of heat to warm up the engine enough. I'm getting too old for that shit.

But on cold days, it has to be done. If it's been below freezing for any length of time, I preheat it. Not preheating an engine when it's cold is a sure way to speed up the need for an overhaul.

The airport manager mowed out a grass strip almost the full length of the paved runway.

Grass runways are terrific, if they're reasonably smooth. Lots less wear and tear on the tires and the tailwheel tends to have a little more braking effect.

Anyway, a few months ago, I took a friend to breakfast at KDXE's Skyways Cafe. I had coffee last week with his father and stepmother; they were in the coffee shop when I went in for some joe after an early morning hearing. The dad said that his son had way too much fun on that flight for it to be legal and he thanked me for taking him up.

I've owed 33C for almost a quarter of a century, now. Sometimes I forget how special and how much of an adventure it must seem to climb into a small airplane and fly wherever you feel like going.

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