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Mackay Ra-Aus Training


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Winsor, I've got 53hrs in 5229. It's a great little ship and runs really well. My avatar was taken with it on a nav at Caloundra.


Pete McNamara looks after it REALLY well. You will have a ball learning in it!


Have fun! :thumb_up:



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It certainly is a nice looking machine... The hanger also contains two Thrusters, a C140 and a C206. Lots of nice toys... And the chance to convert onto the Thruster down the track... Am very interested in trying one out as they fit the budget.



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"A bit underpowered but has a nice big wing and cruises along nicely" was the description I was given of the J170 today...


You know 500fpm climb was regarded as respectable once... And Super Cubs were high performance aeroplanes.



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  • 3 months later...

Update on my flying lessons..


Things have been a bit slow since Jabiru 5229 arrived in Mackay. The weather this year has been the wettest I have experienced here and we had a cyclone as well and with the CFI living in SE QLD with the school owner being under his tutelage it has meant a fair amount of time between lessons.


The last 2 days have been a blast. The weather came good after the rain of the previous couple of days (thanks to the guys on chat for recommending the Naked Rain Dance- It actually worked!) so I picked up my instructor of his Virgin Blue flight into Mackay at 1020am and we went straight to the field to get into it. As soon as we arrived Murray left me to do the preflight (under the watchful corner of his eye of course) and we were in the aircraft on our way to the training area in order for me to get comfortable after an absolutely awful takeoff... to be expected I guess after a break of almost 2 months between lessons.


Nerves settles it was back to the circuit at Palmyra for practicing (missed) approaches. After going around and around and around for what seemed like ages we climbed to 2000 feet and skirted controlled airspace at Mackay to head for the Northern Beaches and did a missed approach in to Ball Bay Airstrip... was great experience because the turbulence coming off the hills surrounding the Northern approach was lots of fun.


Then back to Palmyra for our final circuit and landing. Fortunately Murray did not choose this approach for my first landing because the old Jabiru throttle curse reared its ugly head and we were dead stick from about 20 feet. Murray is an ex GFA CFI so it was no big deal and all approaches are of the glide variety... no dragging the aircraft in under power at Palmyra. So a total of 2.2 hours for my first session of the day!


After we landed Matt (School owner) pulled out the BIG lunchbox and provided us all with chicken and salad sandwiches for lunch. What service!


After lunch I refueled the Jab and it was back in the air for another session of circuits with missed approaches... at the end of another 1.1 hrs on the last circuit I landed for the first time. It was all over before I had a chance to realize what was happening! Taxied back in and the end of a long day of flying 3.3 hrs all up.


The next day (today as I right this) I arrived a 2.00pm for my lesson... a Cessna 172 was taxiing for takeoff and an RV9 was already up and about from the same strip. I watched as the 172 took off as most of the larger machines at this strip tend to do- straight down the drag strip! I was thinking to my self that must be scary- the concrete barriers give you about a wingspan clearance on each side (if that) and there are light poles along the sides and advertising banners right about where you are aiming in your takeoff run. I hoped in the Jab after completing all preflight checks, we started up and I started taxiing for the end of the grass strip where I had taken off yesterday only to have my instructor telling me to go left, a little more, more, more.... and when I enquired if he wished me to taxi on to the drag strip he said "Yes... we will use the drag strip for this takeoff"... Holy guacamole!!! As it turned out taking off down this strip is nothing to worry about... According to Matt it is more the mental picture at your run up point that makes you sweat. Again after takeoff straight into circuits with missed approaches but this time with a touch and go during each one. All good for another 1.5 hrs.


After landing the next student turned up for his lesson and as I watched them prepare for their flight Matt said "Lets pull this one out" and indicates his beautiful 1947 Cessna140... Whoopee!


We spent about an hour local flying including a missed approach and nice slow low pass down the strip in this Classic machine... and I can tell you it is a lot nice AND easier to fly than the Jabiru.


So... two days of training and another 4.8 hours to add to the log book. Can't wait for the next session.













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Thanks for the co-ordinates Dunlop... This video is a bit off topic... involves a different sort of flying but gives you a view down the drag strip- Basically the view on takeoff. You can see the hangers on the right when he pulls up. Running next to the hangers is the return road and grass runways which are also available for takeoff but are half the length of the drag strip and its over run.




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