February 15, 2014 Getting back in the air

My beautiful airplane is back online and ready to go. Shown here waiting in the south hangar.

Hangar Shot

I thought about bringing it back home this weekend, but my north hangar has support beams blocking my way. Those supports get put in whenever 3″ or more of snow are expected up north, to provide additional support for the snow load.  Never liked having the steel posts installed with my airplane still in the hangar, so when I get notified, I empty the hangar.  I couldn’t bear having one of the posts dropped on me. Until the posts are removed, the airplane is trapped inside or outside.  I’ll leave it in Georgetown for another week at this point.

The maintenance issue that cost me January was a crack in the left main gear strut. You see the web on the left of the strut, which is where a hairline crack allowed fluid to leak in a way that made it appear as if the seals were leaking. Rob and Steve at least figured that out down in Georgetown Aero.  Rob specifically was on the job – getting a replacement shipped out to Utah for overhaul.  Keeping the PA30 in the air is not cheap, but is worth the effort.  Couldn’t do it without skilled mechanics.IMG_1431

Looking at the current weather pattern you can see all the airmets that block my way. I am banking on the end of February taking this consistently frustrating weather with it, allowing me to fly myself out there and avoid the commercial travel stress. I’ll watch the pattern for another week, and make the call to fly commercial if need be.

Icing

Icing

My airplane is ready, and I will be ready. but maybe with a bit of rust.  Today it’s the boat show with my bride, tomorrow Mike is coming for a sim session at the house that I’m looking forward to, and Monday I hope to drive down and fly Delta Fox if the wx allows. The temperatures need to be warm enough to allow engine starting without pre-heat to make that happen.

For my sim session with Mike,  I am planning to do the approaches I’ll need out in Illinois for both the trip out and the training. I’ll also transition to their SOPs.

Mondays flight will be a significant post-maintenance flight that needs to be done in VFR and good weather.  The gear has been cycled on the ground, but the work done touched lots of systems.  I need to make sure it all gets tested before big travel.

Fly professionally. Stay clear of the ice.