Lesson 54 - Thursday September 16th
Solo Pattern Work
I'd had a lesson booked for today, but Craig had to cancel, since it was a Jewish Holiday, which I never realized was something he observed.
So, at his suggestion, I just took the lesson solo, and did six Takeoffs and Landings. I tried to practice soft field takeoff technique, but again had problems keeping the plane in ground effect. I suppose if the plane takes off, then it's all good. But I really should be getting the plane into the air quicker, and being more aware the the speed at which I rotate out of ground effect. The takeoffs were all pretty smooth though.
Landings were a varied bunch. There was a 10 knot headwind, which is fine, since there's no crosswind to blow me off track. It just makes the glide slope at a certain power setting and airspeed be a bit shallower relative tot he ground (since I have 10 knots less groundspeed than normal).
This caused me to come in high a lot of the landings, and I seemed to have a hard time getting it down on the ground. All the landings worked out pretty good though, nothing at all to complain about once I actually made contact.
On my last landings, the wind had picked up another couple of knots, and I did an excellent landing, with the plane coming to a stop in what seemed like 300 feet! I'm feeling pretty confident about my landings now.
I've 8.8 hours of solo now, surprisingly little since I've done my long cross country already. My total hours are now 61.5, I suspect I'll get my PPL somewhere in 70-80 range, not too bad (assuming I pass).
(c) 2004 Mick West