Friday, August 29, 2014

August 28th

I sloped out of work a little early and met an FAA Flight Instructor Examiner at Lincoln, where we went through a list of exercises that the CAA want me to go through for a restricted 2nd class medical.  We then went over to the hangar, where he watched me preflight the plane, then we went out for about 45 minutes including 3 practice engine failures, and 3 complete landings.  It was a hot old day, and the density altitude was just crazy, meaning the plane struggled to climb with both of us in it, but we managed to get all of the exercises crossed off, and the forms filled in.  When I got home, I scanned and emailed them to the CAA, so I'm hoping for the medical to be sorted out before too long.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

August 27th

After work, I went over to the airfield to pick up some stuff I'd left there the last time I was flying, and while there I filled the plane with gas and <gasp> washed it.  Well, not spanky gleaming washed, just getting the worst of the dust it accumulates in the hangar washed.  As I was finishing up, Richard showed up in his RV-6A, just back from some formation flying, and after he'd put it away, we went and got a burger.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August 24th

I took Tilly, and went to see the Mustang kit that Vince is working on.  It's coming along nicely, and I wore Tilly out completely, after she stole a turkey baster from Vince's tool pile as a toy.

In the evening, Christine showed up on her way to Oregon.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

August 23rd

After wasting the morning playing Warcraft, I went over to the airfield and repitched the prop on the Flightstar.  I've never seen more than 6100rpm, and the 503 doesn't produce its maximum power until 6500rpm.  The Powerfin prop blades are measured using a 1/4" rod in a hole, then using a feeler gauge to check the pitch, rather than a pitch protractor (which I don't have).  I removed 1mm of pitch (it was basically as far forward as it should go.  When I went out for a test flight, it climbed at around 6300rpm, which I'm happy with.  The interesting thing is that now I cruise around at around 5000rpm, rather than 4800rpm, but that puts the engine a bit further into the power band, meaning it's a bit peppier.  I doubt it'll change the fuel consumption by much, as the Rotax manual claims the best economy is around 5200-5500rpm.  The main thing is that the CHTs are now down to ~400F on takeoff, and the EGTs are above 1000F (it's a bit of a balancing act).  I'm considering that pretty close to perfect, so it's done :o)

Friday, August 22, 2014

August 21st

The other day, Vic had said that the Jeep was hard to start, so I'd recharged the battery.  Well, today it didn't start at all, so I had to go and collect her.  When we went back to get the battery out of it, it started, so we drove to Sears and got a new battery fitted.  The old one is over 4 years old, so I'm not particularly upset.  The new battery comes with a 4 year warranty, so hopefully we won't have to think about this again for a while.

August 20th

I went to the airfield for the EAA meeting.  I was aiming to help with the barbecue, but Jack had gone to his sister's, so I ended up cooking.  The Airventure presentations went well, and nobody got sick, so yay!

August 19th

I went to the airfield hoping to fly, but the wind was picking up.  A lot.  Still, I did get to see Danny's new Eurofox.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

August 17th

I went to the airfield pretty early, and took the plane out for a few circuits (before it got too damned bumpy to be having any fun).  So, the new engine seems to run just fine, and I didn't see any CHTs above 375F, where the old engine was getting well above 400F on take-off.  Of course, it was cooler, so that'd make a difference :o)  I set the trigger for the warning light to 435F (Rotax say 480F is the absolute red line), and I'll keep an eye on it for a bit.

In the early evening, I went back to the airfield and did another 80 minutes of circuits in >90F, and the CHT never went above 425F.  I think we'll call that fixed :o)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

August 16th

Early in the morning, I played a little Warcraft and cut the video for Richard's EAA presentation.  When Vince called to say the Flightstar was all set up, I went over to the airfield to check stuff out, and drop off Richard's memory stick.  Jack and I went and picked up supplies for the EAA barbecue on Wednesday, then dropped that off at his hangar.  Everybody then decamped to Pizza Roundup for lunch, then we all went our separate ways.  It was still pretty damned hot, so I just screwed around on the computer for the evening.

August 15th

The new fan cooling stuff for the Rotax 503 arrived, and Vince called to say he was going to be free on Saturday, so we dropped that off at the airport, and picked up a memory stick from Richard with another video for his EAA presentation.

The CD player has stopped working in the van, so I swapped that for the spare one I have from the Subaru (which never made it into the Jeep).  I'll have to take the damn thing apart to my CDs back :o(

Thursday, August 14, 2014

August 13th

We went and met Richard for dinner, as he was on his way back from Marysville.  I gave him his memory stick with his Powerpoint presentation on it.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

August 12th

Today was Tilly's 7th birthday, so in dog years she's now older than I am.  In the morning, I gave her a new rope toy that she promptly destroyed and she got whipped cream on her breakfast.  When Vic got home, we gave her a large beach ball, which lasted almost _6_  minutes, then walked her down to Starbucks so she could have some whipped cream there.  All in all, a good day for the doggie.

August 11th

We watched the new "Robocop".  Eh, it wasn't as good as the original, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 10th

I went over to the airfield early in the day, so I could catch everybody there.  Danny arrived, and I paid him for the engine, and we dragged it over to my side of the hangar.  Then Richard got back from a formation flight, and gave me the videos I needed for his EAA presentation.  He suggested an early lunch, and we were half way there when a friend of his arrived at the airport, and we all went back.  We ended up all going for lunch at the nearest Subway, then I went along in Richard's RV-6A for some more formation work.  After that, he needed to run Lance's Mooney up to ~6500' to check so maintenance work that they recently had done.  I got to fly it a little, though there wasn't much to do.  We then went up in the RV-6A again, and I flew it over to Folsom Lake, where we did a bit of maneuvering before I flew it back to Lincoln.  Richard took over for the landing :o)

When I got home, we watched the excellent MotoGP race from Indianapolis.

In the evening, I pulled the punctured tube from my mountain bike, and found that the hole I've patched twice was leaking again.  So I threw the tube in the bin and put a new one in.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

August 9th

I spent part of the day haggling around with Jack and Danny, and ended up buying a low hours Rotax 503 fan cooled engine that's missing some of the cooling parts.  Now I just need to find those, and I'll be rocking a new engine on the plane, with the current one as a spare.  I'm hoping to find the missing parts quickly, otherwise I'll get Vince to fix the current engine, and fly on that for the moment.

I spent some time playing with video files to create a Powerpoint presentation for Richard to give at the next EAA member's meeting.

About a quarter of the stuff I put on Ebay sold, so I spent a bit of time boxing that stuff up and getting the things I've been paid for shipped out.  Yay.

August 8th

I had another (my third) puncture on my bicycle ride.  Time to put a new tube in the rear tyre, while I see what's going on.  I have a feeling that the patch I put on the second hole in the first "push the bloody thing home" incident has started to leak, like the first patch did in the second "I'll still have to walk home even if I set fire to the thing right here" incident.  Got all that?  Those "peel and stick" patches aren't as good as the old glue ons, methinks.

In the evening, we watched "Divergent".  Needs more space battles.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

August 5th

We met Jen for dinner, then went to see "Guardians of the Galaxy".  It was a good flick, especially as I don't have much idea who the characters were :o)  I am, however, horrified at the possibility of a "Howard the Duck" remake.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August 4th

We watched "The Wolf of Wall Street", which was entertaining and depressing (because it's pretty much true) at the same time.

August 3rd

I spent the day tinkering around the house.  I even got the grass cut.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

August 2nd

It's weird, not planning for going flying in the evening... it's like I don't know what to do with myself.  So, today I tore apart an old laptop that's broken, and put the few "useful" parts on Ebay, then I went through a box of YSR parts and put most of them on Ebay too (I hit the limit of free listings, so I stopped there).  The main thing with the YSR parts is that it's an old, old bike, so I don't want to remove these bits for the world by dropping them into a landfill if somebody can use them.  Once these things are gone, they're gone.
Hopefully I can get some of this junk out of here, and I can make a few shekels to spend on other junk to replace it.  It takes ages to list a bunch of stuff, which is why I've been putting this off for so long :o)  I also tossed out a bunch of stuff I have no use for, that I don't think anybody else will either.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

August 1st

A new month, so here's the solar stats...

Power paid for

Power generated