Sunday, June 30, 2019

June 30th

I didn't sleep well as there were fireworks being let off last night, getting Tilly all upset.  I pretty much dragged through the day, then we went over to the airport.  It had been our intention to fly for a little while, then take Chris to dinner, but he got out of his ground school class early, so we skipped the flying and just went to dinner.

June 29th

I got up early and flew the gyro to Auburn to meet our friends from Columbia airport for breakfast.  Chris was doing his ground school, and Randy was in San Diego, so I flew back and did a little maintenance - I'm at 975 hours now, with the rotor bearing inspection coming up.

In the evening, we watched "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald".

Saturday, June 29, 2019

June 28th

Today was the last day of the Kids' Camp, so we took them all flying.  I flew 3 in the gyro, and the rest flew with Bruce (Cardinal)  and Dan (RV-10).  Richard with the Starduster was out, so we were expecting to have to keep an eye out for him, but he ground looped it (we think) on one landing.  Luckily it was off the side of the runway, so it didn't close the airport.

June 27th

I went to the airport for Kids' Camp, where we talked about lighter than air aircraft, then had them trying to get the weighting just right on helium balloons.

June 26th

I went over to the airport, dragged the Piper Aztec out of the EAA hangar, and taxied the gyro round and put it in the hangar for the Kids' Camp talk.  It seemed to go OK, and then Dan had them flying drones - I took the gyro out of the hangar for that.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

June 25th

I started the day fixing the broken sprinkler, then went to the airport to help with the Kids' Camp.  Kids are a lot of work, aren't they?

After that, I took the gyro out for a few circuits, then went home.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

June 24th

I went over to the airport and set up for the Kids' Camp, then joined everybody else in corralling the 7 kids (7-12) as we took them on a tour of the airport.  It was interesting to see some people actually working, and Byron (bless him) suggested I start teaching for Skyways.  I'm not a CFI :o)

When I got home, I took the guts out of a new sprinkler valve and put it in the old sprinkler valve, so I didn't have to cut it off the pipes.  While it's fixed that leak, it looks like I still have to dig up one of the sprinklers and fix its leak.

In the evening, we watched "Captain Marvel".

June 23rd

I was pretty tired after a long day in the sun yesterday, so I decided against flying.  I looked at a problem with the sprinklers in the garden, and found that one of the valves was leaking, and worked on a presentation for the Aviation Kids' Camp next week at the airport.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

June 22nd

It's the AOPA Fly-in at Livermore, but that's a) insanely busy and b) controlled airspace.  Chris had flown down to meet up with some gyroplane guys on Thursday, but neither Randy nor I have a controlled airspace endorsement (yet), so we'd been talking about driving down.  The thing is, it's at last 2 hours each way in the car, so we'd pretty much decided not to go. 

Randy came up with a great idea - we'd fly to Byron, Paul would pick us up there and drive us to Livermore.  I got to the airport early so I could clean my air filter (it was out of oil, so it was due), got the plane out and was all ready to go when Randy arrived.  We were going to have a decent tail wind all the way down, and I took off first - I was at about 750' by half way down the runway, so I did an early crosswind and headed South.  I called McLellan to let them know I was passing to the East at about 2,000', then carefully threaded my way between Sacramento Executive and Mather's class D airspace, then pointed straight at Byron and started listening for Randy.  I was constantly telling him where I was, but he never really told me how far behind he was.  When I passed the 2,000' towers, I slowed down to ~65mph (airspeed) and told him not to run in to me.  As I was approaching Byron, he said he was 21 miles from Byron - I was about 10 miles from Byron at that point.  Oh well, at least he got to practice navigating by himself rather than just following me :o)  I was looking on the map, and at the hills in front of me, and thinking Byron must be on the other side - the tallest peak nearby was listed at 2,200, and I wanted to be comfortably over that because of the wind, so I was climbing towards 4,000' when I saw Byron.  This side of the hills.  Doy.  I descended (a lot), joined the pattern and landed.  I was getting off at the first taxiway and there was a glider towing up - I stopped to allow them past, but they wanted to get on the runway on the taxiway I was on, so I ended up taxying around a bit to get to the parking area.  I parked, then waved Randy in to park next to me (2 gyros takes up way less space than 1 fixed wing).  The Patriots jet display team are based at Byron (I didn't know this), and 2 of the jets were going out - I went out and waved at them, and they popped smoke back at me :o)  Paul showed up while I was chatting to a fire marshall, we loaded everything up and headed to the show.  The show was interesting - we watched the STOL demonstration (the highlight being Draco and Yee-Haw) and met up with a bunch of gyro guys who were in town for the show.  I got to sit in Peter's bright yellow AR-1 that he'd flown up from Los Angeles.

As everything started to shut down, Paul drove us back to Byron, and Chris flew from Livermore and met us, before heading out.  We headed towards Cameron Park, and once we'd got almost past Mather, Chris headed home, and Randy and I headed towards Lincoln.  After a while, I noticed Randy was drifting off to the West, so I followed him - he thought he was heading back towards Lincoln, but after we'd landed, we figured that he'd told his GPS to go to Lincoln, but we'd carried on to avoid Mather's airspace, and he was then headed back to get on that original track rather than using the heading bug at the top of his screen :o)

Saturday, June 22, 2019

June 21st

We watched "Skyscraper".  Despite some good scenes, I'd say it was meh.

Friday, June 21, 2019

June 19th

After work, I rode the DRZ over to the airport and cooked for the EAA meeting.  It made it all the way there and back without a problem, which is nice.

Monday, June 17, 2019

June 16th

I started my day around 01:00, getting called out for work.  It was a French customer, who'd left a callback number that went to a message in French.  I had no idea what that said, so I mailed a bunch of people there and pointed out that we needed a direct number.  An hour later, I gave up and went back to bed.  He replied with the same phone number around 06:30, so I got up and reiterated my need for a direct number, which I finally got, only to see that it was a problem with them not managing their servers, and not something that we should be doing for them.  Triffic.  I'd given him my direct number, so I hung around the house expecting the promised call back.  They didn't call back.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

June 15th

I was on call, so I got up and cleared out the overnight stuff, then headed to the airport to cook breakfast for the LRAA display day.  When everything was put away, I went over to the hangar and got the plane out, then flew down to Columbia to meet Chris and Steve (passenger) for lunch - there was a fly-in there that we'd been invited to by Kim and Victoria, a couple we met up at Auburn a few months ago.  They had a temporary tower there (interestingly there was no NOTAM that I could find), and they told me to call overhead at 2000'.  The runway's at 2100', so I assumed they meant 4100', so called that when I was above.  The controller told me to fly North and to expect a right downwind join for 17.  When I was about 2.5 miles North, he said I could head for downwind, but that seemed odd as I was upwind of the airport, so I suggested I just do a straight in approach, rather than tie up the runway for that long (they'd been racing cars up and down the runway when I flew overhead).  I got him to agree, so I just turned in and flew to the threshold - he wanted me to take the first turn off to the right, on the grass, and I could see that a fair way down the runway, so I flew low until near the turn off, with the controller getting more upset that I hadn't landed - I landed and stopped right by the turn off, then followed the marshall to park just 2 spots up from Chris.  I got out and sorted everything out, and Chris and Steve arrived having watched me land.  We wandered about a bit looking at the stalls, then ordered a pizza and went to see Kim and Victoria at their hangar while we ate.  Chris had to get home for his wife's birthday, so we headed out just after 14:00.  We had to wait for the car races to finish, then crossed the runway to the taxiway, then had to wait for the car races again before we took off, pretty close together.  The controller asked us to do a low pass, so we came back around and did that before heading North West towards home - they dropped off towards Cameron Park, and I headed back to Lincoln - it seemed to have been a long day, but it was less than 3 hours flying.

June 14th

Having worked Sunday, I had today off.  Obviously I had a conference call first thing, as I found out too late to cancel it, but after that I pottered around the house doing things and stuff, then headed to the airport to take the plane out for a while.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

June 11th

Vic drove the van to work, and I got the windows tinted in the Bolt.  Oooh... first mod :o)

Monday, June 10, 2019

June 9th

I was working covering Australia in the afternoon, so by the time I'd got myself all sorted out, it was too late to go and fly.  Oh well.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

June 8th

I pottered over to the airport to cook lunch before Dan's ADS-B presentation, then talked about GPS displays with people and "helped" Tim and Darren with their throttle cable replacement.  Chris had been talking about flying up to Redding, about 100 miles away, to look at a plane, but there was a 25-35mph headwind, so I figured we wouldn't go because of that - it didn't occur to me that it was because the guy couldn't fly in that much wind :o)

We ended up meeting at Auburn for their "Soaring Saturday" thing, and as the only people to fly in, we ended up in the display with the old biplanes and Jim's Quickie Q200.  The wind wasn't an issue taking the gyroplane out, but it was a pain taxying crosswind with it trying to blow the rotor over - this was with the rotor stopped.  I crabbed the whole damn way to Auburn, where the wind was a lot lower.  Coming home, I was crabbed the whole damn way back to Lincoln, and when I turned downwind I saw my ground speed as 108mph, where my airspeed was 70mph.  After landing, I sat on the edge of the runway and let the rotor spin down before taxying crosswind - it's not like there was anybody about that I was getting in the way for.

Friday, June 7, 2019

June 6th

I took the car in to get the dashboard worked on.  I'd arranged to have a loaner car so I could get home and do some work, and they gave me a (white) 2018 Volt.  It's not as nice to drive as the Bolt, as it seems a lot more claustrophobic, and the regenerative braking... doesn't, really.  It's also worrying to see it say "38 miles range" when you get into it.  I got it home, put it on charge, then took it back at the end of the day without using any gas :o)  It was nice bringing the Bolt home again, but I'm not convinced that the problem's fixed, but whatever, it's over.

June 5th

After work, I went out to the airport and took the gyro out for a couple of circuits, then just went and pottered around for a bit.

Monday, June 3, 2019

June 2nd

We headed out to the airport, met Randy and flew up to Auburn to meet Chris for brunch.  He strapped my camera to the side of his gyro with one of his GoPro mounts on the way home, and we'll see how that worked out compared to my mast mount.

In the evening, I was bothered that the air conditioning wasn't cooling anything.  I took a look outside and the fan in the cooling tower wasn't turning.  At first I thought it could be the starting capacitor (again), but it was actually that the breaker panel was labelled incorrectly, so when I'd turned off the "Dryer" to see how many wires there were going in (3, so no easy 250v car charger upgrade for me), I'd actually turned off the AC.  I didn't bother turning it back on again, as we don't have a 250v dryer.

Just as well we didn't have a 4 wire connection there that I'd then have tried upgrading to a NEMA 14-30 socket, eh?

June 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:
Power billed

Power generated

I started the day at the EAA hangar doing some wiring for the ceiling fans.  I wasn't about to get up on one of the scaffolds to work on the roof, so I ran out of stuff to do around the time that Randy showed up, so we got the planes out and waited for Chris to arrive.  We'd been talking about going to Sutter for their display day, but figured it was probably too late, so we ended up flying up to Auburn for lunch.  We flew back down the canyon, then tinkered around at Lincoln for a bit before all heading out.