Sunday, March 05, 2017

Flying Lesson #106 - A Pattern Is Emerging

Today the winds again wanted to come out and play - 15 knots at 120 degrees, so we got to use the 9 side of the runways.

I did the preflight, startup etc and my flows were much smoother - it helped that I had studied and worked on memorizing them for the past couple days.

Then I did the long taxi down to Runway 9L. Lots of planes coming in and out today and the tower was busy. First I was told to hold on 9L then they immediately had me expedite a crossing to 9R and takeoff but fly a left pattern to enter 9L's crosswind and then setup to land on 9L. Not a problem. I put in the crosswind correction and headed off 9R.

The first pattern the winds were a bit gusty. I had full instrument panel and Ray said he wasn't going to do or say anything unless I overlooked something or scared him. so with that understood I began the pattern.

Overall not bad, my flow and procedures were good, I came in on final and had a bad bit of wind hit so I did a go-round instead of trying to salvage the landing. Ray said that was smart aeronautical decision making on my part and i did the go-round perfectly. Now to land the plane. I did the next pattern and came down in an ok landing as I had too much crosswind correction in. The next one was again not great as I came in with too much power and floated for a good long time. Ray stated I was used to flying a 172 and I was doing exactly the right things for a 172 including a some power on a gusty crosswind but he said it was too much for an Archer and I needed to get the power out earlier and use less cross wind correction.

I then tried that and the next landing was perfect - a touchdown with the stall horn on, first with the wheel that was into the wind, then the other main and finally the nose wheel. Ray said it was a great landing in conditions beyond starter students.

With that happy thought in mind I went and did a few more landings, all of them decent if a couple a little flat but he said I was getting the hang of things and had done them all by myself. This was happy-making. Hopefully this will stick and I can start moving along and get signed off soon to solo an Archer. Apparently I need to be stage-checked first which may happen soon.

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