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Showing content with the highest reputation since 01/07/2011 in all areas

  1. 19 points
    I'm posting this as it may help someone else. On Saturday I didn't plan to go flying because I have had a crook back and am not getting much sleep. I have been taking two paracetamol every 4 hours for a few days. I went to the aero club in the morning for a social catch up. It was a lovely day and I hadn't been flying for two weeks. I felt quite OK and I know that paracetamol is not supposed to affect attention etc. So I decided to go for a short local flight. About ten minutes into the flight I wondered why the plane was sluggish, then realised the flaps were still in takeoff position. The flight went OK but the landing was bad, I felt a bit zoned out. I put the plane in the hangar and went home. Today I couldn't find the aircraft keys. Went to the hangar and found them in the plane, mags still switched on. Mixture pulled, thats how I shut down. Master switch was off. I have never done that before in 46 years of flying. Dont think I am getting dementia yet. So it must be lack of sleep, discomfort from the sore back and maybe some effect of the drugs. It was a bad idea to go flying, but I felt quite OK before and after the flight. I will be a bit more cautious about my general alertness in future.
  2. 15 points
    In Michael Monck’s article in the Sport Pilot magazine, he appears to be advocating a culture change in the organization of RA Aus, to something which looks to me like Managerialism. He states that as a consultant, he thinks that “People hate consultants.” And that “People think that I’m going to steal their watch and charge them to tell them the time.” He argues that “It does demonstrate that people are resistant to change.” The defense that “people are resistant to change” is often used to fend off dissent. The dissenters may disagree with the changes being proposed, but to characterize them as being resistant to change is wrong. He then goes on to propose “But pilots aren’t what RA Aus needs at the moment.” I agree that the organization needs improvement, but being run solely by professional “managers” will see the philosophy of the organization morph from a focus on aviation, to a focus on administration. I’ve seen it happen. I worked for TAFE in Qld and saw a managerialism culture take root there. When I started, TAFE was run by educators. There were two people between me (a beginning instructor) and the college director, and our section had 24 teachers/instructors, teaching an intake of around 120 students per semester plus ongoing students. When I left TAFE was run by “professional managers” and there were no less than six levels of bureaucracy between me and the college director. Our section had been reduced to seven teachers/instructors teaching an intake of around 32 students per semester. This was for the computing and electronics sections, but other sections suffered the same fate. Every time there was a budget cut, the numbers of administration staff grew and the numbers of teachers shrank… Every time! Michael then goes on to assert “We’ve had a bunch of aviators looking after what is essentially a large business…” When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. When your primary focus is “business” then everything looks like a “business”. In fact, RA Aus does resemble a business in some ways, but it is most definitely NOT a business. It must be able to pay its way and conduct operations, but it is NOT a for-profit enterprise (the common concept of a “business”), and I would argue that it should not be. In business, policy is developed from the top down with little or no input from employees or customers. Again, customers and employees, have no say whatever in who runs the business. And there are other aspects of “business” that are (or should be) a very poor fit for our organization. Another quote from the article “Aviators are mostly good at aviation. They’re not always so good at management. And that’s what RA Aus does it manages.” But that’s not ALL that RA Aus does. But again, when all you’ve got is a hammer … I agree that the management of RA Aus has been due for criticism in some areas, but that is not a reason to shun pilots from the management roles or to turn our aviation organization into a “business” staffed by “professional managers” focused primarily on administration. Think about your vote. Read the proposals of the candidates carefully and think about what RA Aus should be focused on going forward. Should it be primarily focused on flying, or business? I believe that what RA Aus needs is people who are pilots first and managers second, not the other way around. Otherwise it may end up a CASA clone, or go the way of TAFE.
  3. 15 points
    Man. Cant win hey. Some people say there isnt enough communication from the board. Some people say that maj should check everything he says with the board. It doesnt say "RAA board member" in his handle. This is not the official RAA website. He has been posting as Maj for years before he was on the board. He qualifies his statements as not being the views of the board (unless he is actually expressing board views). Whats the problem here people? Cant you see the resource for what it is. You have the ear of a board member here. He is willing to take comment and give some. I sence the axes are being grinned in the background here and its got little to do with Ross expressing his "qualified" opinion on jabiru engines. lets not forget, this dude has been fixing (and operating) aeroplane engines professionally since long before jabiru were around:)
  4. 14 points
    if you heard about every road fatality when they happen, you wouldnt get in a a car either.. funny thing life, no one gets out of it alive. enjoy it while you can. even it it means enjoying things others think dangerous, or are dangerous, i still ride motorbikes, and on long interstate rides as well. i know the risks, i accept them, and take every precaution to lower them, but i know, i can be killed. and if i am, i will die knowing i have lived more than a lot of others. another strange thing, about training, we all know flying can be dangerous, yet we all want to get the cheapest training available... think about it. i have had aerobatic training with military instructors, sure, wasnt cheap. but i know where my limits are, and test them using schools aircraft, with a qualified instructor beside me, so i dont have to when im flying my Savannah by myself. If your worried about flying after seeing or hearing of an accident, then think about getting more training, a refresher, or something you can do to lower your risks, or walk away and forever dream. Condolences to all involved.
  5. 13 points
  6. 13 points
    I just wanted to register my wholehearted agreement with the above, and add a few comments which may be helpful to others undertaking aerial photography operations. During my flying career filming and photography was my absolute favourite kind of work but the commercial training course provided little or nothing to prepare us for it. It wasn't until I'd had a couple of very hairy moments that I sought the guidance of my former CFI and his prompt reaction was to advise to always keep in mind that unless you're filming air-to-air it's always a ground-related flying operation, usually low-level, and it's impossible to rehearse all the likely requirements for 'getting the shot' - all of which make it an extremely hazardous activity. In the simplest terms he said that seemingly the sole purpose of a cameraman was to kill the pilot ... and from then on I always reminded myself of that before and during every photo flight. More specifically, the cameraman has only one objective, getting the perfect shot. To do that the aircraft must be positioned according to the lighting and that's probably not what or where the pilot might have expected, so the pilot is usually 'told' to "get me over there" - "and quick because the costs are running up", "the sun's setting" and all that. Also - even if the cameraman happened to understand the technicalities of keeping the plane or helicopter flying, he/she is isolated from the realities because they're spending most of the time looking through the viewfinder. And - in my experience cameramen are completely fearless. Many a time I've had to stop them removing seat-belts to go and stand unrestrained on the skids, to the extent where I eventually bought the appropriate harnesses and equipment restraints, and had the ops manual section approved, to allow them to hang out the side or ride the skids if that's what they wanted. It certainly made my job easier because from there they had a wider field of view and so it reduced the amount of manoeuvring required. The big one though, as others posted above, is that the pilot must understand who is in charge of the flight and, whilst making every effort to conduct the photographic operation efficiency and effectively, be completely comfortable with refusing or delaying any 'request' as necessary to keep the plane flying. Avoiding distraction and object fixation can be very difficult too, my alarm bells ring anytime I hear someone say "I just want to go up and get a few 'quick' shots of my house, and give the wife a wave". That can be a good example of how things get out of hand really quickly. I've twice been a pax on a flight doing just that on the way home after a weekend away. Each time the pilot has ended up doing increasingly tighter turns over the house with the camera-wielder straining with their head twisted back over their shoulder encouraging the pilot to 'not that way, point it that way'. It's a hopeless situation, if you're turning over the top of the target the plane can never be brought to point where the cameraman wants it to be. Given the lack of prior planning, and the pilot's desire to please, a disaster is just seconds away. The correct way to get those 'my house' shots is to fly a grid to the side of the property making a turn/course change of no more than 90 degrees on each pass, then flying away some distance, turning around, re-positioning and making another pass. The cameraman will accuse you of wasting his time/dollars in the air but in fact the operation will be completed quicker and the photographic results will be far better. RIP for the two in Tassie, as Tomo said, "what a sad way to finish a year".
  7. 13 points
    Did anyone catch the 60 minutes ep last night re the malaysian airliner? I must say, 60 minutes years ago used to be one of the more, umm, trustworthy current affairs shows. But last night I was horrified as I watched them milk the current Drama for every drop of beat up, forced emotion from those poor people. It was shocking to see the poor widow going through her torment, on the show with an apparently 'caring' reporter there to comfort her in her grief, as long as the cameras kept rolling. Further, they interview an 'aviation expert' who makes the claim: " There is no evidence of any fire, system failure or anything else. There is however evidence that it was a deliberate act!!!... Seriously?? WTF!!Does this expert have acces to info that the rest of the world havnt seen? What a complete beat up. It was like reading a forum thread where everyone had an opinion. And then, to top it off, they chuck the reporter in the simulator and recreate the last seconds of the flight, as the jet stalls and plumets to the water. What, in the world, was this meant to prove? Why, would anybody think that should be included in any serious report on the accident. The My god 60 minutes.. You have taken the cake for oversensationalising, cheap, inaccurate and irresponsible reporting.. Disgusted!!!!! Rant over
  8. 13 points
    First of all, you do not have to be involved with SAAA in any way to build and register a home built aircraft, secondly the reason we have the home built fraternity is so that people can have the joy ( frustration) of building and flying something they have created, and thirdly ,nearly everyone I've talked to laments the fact that we are completely over governed in this country, when I started on the RV6 I rang CASA to be sure that I could actually build my own aeroplane , guess what he said YES, how friggin awesome, I can do this at home ,build it, test fly it, and if it kills me then so be it , but I have been given the right to do something and take total responsibility for the out come . It seems to me that this is almost the last place I can think of where the guvmint will let you risk your own life and leave you alone to do ( perhaps yachting inter country) so please there is a lot of stuff wrong but please don't start to complain about a bit of freedom we still have
  9. 12 points
    Thanks everyone for your concern :) Firstly I'm fine ! I'm saddling up for a Fly this morning... For those interested in the human element : Dwayne suffered some very horrific and shocking facial injuries and his lower body was crushed. He was listed as stable put in a coma and underwent the first of many surgeries ( plastic surgery).. During theaccedent he stayed conscious and phoned for help. He also left a detailed note to his wife outlining his track to my house and then the rest of our days flying. His wife was able to find him and call for help. I arrived on scene within 15 mins as Dwayne lives close by..... For those interested in the crash. Shortly after take off at around 700 ft HIS BELOVED tiger moth had a total engine failure He attempted to put her down in the first paddock directly ahead but the paddock was freshly worked with lime rock scattering throughout. The plane wheels sank in the loose top soil on impact and struck rocks and the tiger nosed over instantly tearing it apart. . I have to wait for DwAyne to recover before I can inspect the engine ( yes I'm a qualified automotive engineer) incase it turns bad as they may need to look at the plane again. We have the plane at home... Dwayne has vowed to fly again believe it or not :). Stay safe every one. And PLEASE practice your emergency proceeders often :).
  10. 12 points
    Just been to the cinema to watch 12 years a slave. . . .. . .I was totally shocked at the horror, cruelty & pure exploitation that man can inflict upon his fellow man. . . .I mean, . .$19 ?. . . for popcorn and Coke ! ! >
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