Mike McKay's blog
On 26 Sept 2011 at 19:30, Sennheiser will be sponsoring a free presentation at the Canadian Aviation Museum entitled “Rejuvenating Aviation from the Ground Up”. This engaging informational session, given by Ravi “The Raviator”, has been presented at Embry-Riddle University, the University of North Dakota, the University of Western Ontario, several EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) chapters and many other locations. As a sport pilot and professional musician, Ravi encourages students to not only become involved with commercial aviation, but also to help improve its overall image. During the sessions, Ravi encourages Certified Flight Instructors (CFIs) to become more inspired teachers by reconnecting to their own training days. Ravi also shares grassroots marketing concepts to school owners and operators that they can apply within their own educational institutions. Ravi is a pilot and motivational speaker who is bringing renewed passion to the aviation industry. Concerned that the perception of aviation is in decline, he inspires pilots and aviation professionals to re-connect with their dream through educational and motivational events.
For more about Ravi, see http://www.theRaviator.com.
On Wednesday, September 7th, 2011, Marcel Seguin celebrated 65 years as an OFC Club Member. He started joined the club in 1946 and completed his commercial license with OFC. He remembers those yearly years fondly and recalls the excitement and joy of just being around the planes. There were a wide variety of aircraft available - J3s, Tiger Moths, Fleet Canucks and others. With him were some fantastic people that went on to careers in aviation. Marcel was headed in that direction but started working with the early version of Transport Canada and ended up working on the Canada Air Pilot and enroute charts.
Marcel recently passed his aviation medical and may be the oldest licensed pilot in Canada.
Peter Goodman, an Algonquin College student in the September class flew solo today for the first time. While the September class just started today, Peter has been flying since early August and managed to solo with 17.3 hours of dual flight training.
With the runway under construction, Peter's solo flight took place at the Carp airport. With his instructor, Morgan Ross, Peter flew to Carp and then left Morgan on the ground while he made his first circuit.
On his return, we took a few photos of the event.
The Ottawa Flying Club welcomed the new intake of students from the Algonquin Aviation Management Program today. Approximately 50 students are enrolled in the program which prepares the students for a career as a professional pilot.
Today was the first day of the 16 month program, with briefings in the morning and classes starting in the evening. Although a few students have been flying with OFC for a while, the majority will start flight training on the 4th of September.
In the program, the students will achieve their commercial pilots license with additional ratings for instrument flight rules and multi-engine aircraft operation or flight instruction. On graduation, the students will be able to seek employment in the aviation industry with a goal of becoming an airline pilot.
The first milestone in the training is being able to fly solo, which most of the class should manage by the end of October.
The students in this class come from all across Canada. There are also a few international students as well. Please welcome them to OFC and encourage these new pilots in their training.
A recent story in the Ottawa Citizen caught my eye as it described the short career of a past OFC member. Tomas Bates was a musician and Club member in the late 1930s, having moved to Ottawa from Guelph Ontario. Shortly after the war broke out, he was recruited by the Air Force and started training at Camp Borden. After several months in training, he received his wings on 12 December 1940. He died the next day in a collision during a search and rescue operation.
Despite the fact that witnesses saw the collision, no one actually saw the planes crash in Lake Muskoka. Only one plane was recovered at the time. Tom's aircraft, a Northrup A-17 Nomad was recently found through the diligent efforts of the Lost Airmen in Muskoka Project (LAMP).
Also of interest is the second pilot in Tom's aircraft, a 24 year old Lieutenant named Peter Campbell.
Here is another story about why we tie things down.
On 18 July, the National Capital region experienced some severe hurricane force winds due to a strong storm front which swept through the area. We were ready for the storm which had many of the aircraft bouncing on their tie-downs.
Mark O'Connor's 182 was one of them. In a tail-dragger configuration, Mark's plane was tied down and chocked in place. After the storm, he found the plane had skipped its chocks and the carabiners on the tie downs had bent into hooks. A See the picture below.
A plane, such as the 182, will lift off the ground with full useful load of 1,140 lbs at around 91 km/h or 41 knots. With the aircraft empty, that entire force is applied to the tie down ropes. Its no surprise then that the simple carabiner nearly failed.
Carabiners are popular tie-down tools. They are quick and convenient method of attaching the ropes to the tie-down points. However, they have their limits in strength. A carabiner is designed to lock closed and, in the locked position, it will absorb the force of a fall which can be many times the actual body weight of the climber. The strength ratings of good mountain equipment is around 25kN (equivalent to the weight of 2,500Kg) when closed. However, when open, the device is only a quarter as strong - about 7kN or 700Kg. A cheap carabiner that doesn't lock closed may only support a few hundred pounds.
Lesson learned, ensure your tie-downs are up to the task. They should be able to withstand at least double the useful load of the aircraft. With lift increasing as the square of the speed, a wind speed of 57.4 knots (1.4 times the stall) will generate twice the lift force. A locking carabiner would be well worth the few extra seconds it takes to secure it.
If the wind is too strong, tie-downs will not protect the plane. When a tornado struck Rockcliffe two years ago, several planes remained held in place by good tie downs but had their wings bent because the wind was so strong. Still, prudent planning and precautions will help protect your aircraft in most wind conditions.
Meghan Hawkins soloed on Thursday Afternoon. It was a gorgeous and warm day for the first flight. Meghan is a student in the Private Pilot Program working towards her Private Pilot License. Congratulations to Meghan and her instructor Simon Auger.
Born in Arvida, Québec, October 3, 1930. Fredrick Landry spent the first 18 years of his youth in the Lac St. Jean district of Québec. At age 3, he first encountered the beauty of flight when he saw his first airplane land at the local golf course in Arvida, This airplane may well have been piloted by the legendary Roméo Vachon.
During the war years ( 2nd world war), he was fixated by the hurricanes, Spitfires, Harvards, & Lysanders which flew overhead en route from the airbase at Bagotville to gunnery target areas over Lac St. Jean.
After two years of education at St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, he joined the Canadian Armed Forces, (Royal Canadian Engineers) and three years later, he hit civvy street as a Survey Technologist in Topographical Surveying.
He then joined the firm of Canadian Aero Service and one of his first assignments was the mapping of East/West railway across town, soon to become the “Queensway or highway 417”. Over the years, he also worked with other survey companies which all amalgamated to become in turn, Spartan Air Services, Spartan-Aero, and eventually Kenting Earth Sciences.
Still in the topographical field during those years, he worked in every province in Canada including the Northwest Territories, the U.S.A., and mapping of the Mekong River in Laos and Thailand. Following that, he worked during 4½ years on various government aide projects in Nigeria, West Africa,
During his survey years, many hours were spent being transported by bush planes such as the Norseman, Beavers, Otters, Cansos and Cessna 185s as well as hundreds of hours in the earlier Bells and Alouette 2 helicopters.
In the later years, he decided to curtail travelling and accepted a position at Algonquin College in the French Programme of the Survey Technician and Technology course where he taught for eight years.
During that time, he was in one place long enough so he decided to pursue his life long ambition to fly. In 1975, Algonquin was offering its first aviation ground school so he signed up for that and started to take his flying training at the Ottawa Flying Club.. Shortly after obtaining his private pilot licence, he purchased his very own aircraft, an older Cessna 172 registration C-GNXC. Upon completion of his commercial pilot licence, he decided to upgrade his training so he bought a Cessna 172 floatplane registration C-GUJR which he owned in partnership for twenty years.
He served for two years on the Board of Directors of the Ottawa Flying Club and was a contributor to the Wing Tips, the official club newsletter.
His next dream was to fly bushplanes. During the late 1980’s, he accumulated many hours by training aspiring floatplane pilots and flying skydivers in a Cessna 182 out of the Winchester Air Park. He then went on to obtaining a multi-engine rating on the Ottawa Flying Club’s Beechcraft Duchess.
His dream was almost complete, he had accumulated enough hours to apply for a bush flying operation. He sent out résumés and was hired by Nakina outpost Camps in Nakina, Ontario flying a Cessna 185 transporting hunters and fishermen to remote fishing and hunting camps North from Nakina. In the two summers at Nakina, he flew over 500 hours in the Cessna 185 and also had the opportunity to fly the De Havilland Beaver on a couple of occasions.
To fill out the winters, he was employed by the City of Ottawa as equipment operator on snow removal, work that he found satisfying to fill those long winter nights. It took him back to his childhood by again playing in the snow and operating heavy machinery as he did in his earlier years playing in sand boxes.
The yearning for flying advancement was still there so he went on to obtain his multi-engine instrument rating and eventually at age 61, the ultimate dream, obtaining the Airline Transport Licence, the highest obtainable licence , probably the oldest person in the club to accomplish this feat.
The next three summers were spent in Elliot Lake, Ontario, checking out floatplane pilots for Mount Lake Air Services, accompanying them until they had accumulated enough hours for insurance requirements for carrying passengers.
In the summer of 2001, the Ottawa Flying Club decided to offer floatplane training on a leased Cessna Hawk XP and John Porter and Fred were assigned to do the training. His first graduate and the Club’s first float rated pilot was Dave Kerr on September 30, 2001.
During the summer of 2001 and 2002, they graduated over 22 pilots per season and he amassed over 132 hours of teaching.
As of this writing, he has accumulated over 3228 hours of flying in 24 different types of airplanes, split evenly among float planes and land planes.
One last boyhood dream, is to fly the old Lysander (Tin Lizzie) which he still fondly remembers as a young lad gazing into the skies.
Following an close-call yesterday, the following procedure has been added to our SOPs. See http://www.ofc.ca/wiki/index.php?title=Operational_Control#Security_.26_...
OFC will adhere to all security policies of the Ottawa International Airport regarding access to the airport secure area.
Only holders of a RAIC Card (Red Pass), an approved yellow visitor card (Yellow Pass), a valid pilot license/student pilot permit or students who are under direct supervision of an instructor will be allowed on the ramp.
Pilots without a Red Pass are only allowed in the secure area to move to and from their aircraft.
Visitors must be escorted by the holder of a RAIC card (red pass). Pilots who do not have a RAIC card are only permitted to escort passengers to and from their aircraft.
Non-pilot visitors shall be briefed on ramp safety before being escorted into the secure area. The safety briefing shall cover the following points:
- Be aware of moving aircraft and spinning propellers.
- Give moving aircraft the right of way.
- Only approach aircraft when told to do so by the escort.
- Avoid touching the aircraft unless told to do so by the escort. The aircraft are fragile if not handled correctly.
- Watch where you are going and be aware of trailing edges and propeller tips when moving around aircraft.
- NEVER approach an aircraft while the engine is running.
Under no circumstances are non-pilot visitors to be allowed to approach aircraft whose engines are running.
Dispatch shall "buzz" people through the secure door only after verifying that the person has appropriate clearance. Dispatch will also verify if escorted visitors have received a safety briefing.
Lets be safe out there!
Congratulations to Joshua Shea and his Instructor Chris Busch!
Joshua is one of nine finalists selected from across Canada who will compete for the Webster Trophy in St Frederic, Que. in August.