The Pilotcast

Hangar flying with Pilot Dan, Pilot Mike, and Pilot Kent, along with a special report from the Westfield International Airshow

Pilot Kent is calling in from Ritzville, Washington.

Feedback and Followups:

We start off this week with Pilot Kent telling the harrowing story of his recent truck accident. Luckily, the only fatalities were the truck and his PowerBook. He's already replaced the PowerBook with a new MacBook Pro, with the help of Pilot Bill of the Apple Air Force. Apple couldn't help with the truck, though.

Pilot Dan and Pilot Mike mention an NPR story about a 1956, in-air collision of two passenger planes, over the Grand Canyon, that was the impetus for todays nationwide ATC coverage. And lastly in this section, we give many thanks to Rinker Buck for allowing us to record and publish his reading from his book, "Flight of Passage", to the Oxford Flying Club.

News and Interviews:

Dan and his brother with the Blue AngelsPilot Dan attended the Westfield International Airshow at Barnes Air National Guard Base, in Massachusetts, where the Blue Angels were performing. He explains a bit about how the Blue Angels Team is configured and how they coordinate maneuvers during the show. We also hear about a conversation he overheard about why the full Blue Angels team almost didn't make it to the show. From there, we move on to some interviews he was able to get with performing pilots.

  • Stearman cockpitBill HorriganBill Horrigan, Stearman pilot: Bill is a former airline pilot who now occasionally flies a Stearman at airshows. He gives us a bit of the history of his plane along with some of it's flying characteristics. Bill talks about how tough the Stearman is and some of the maintenance issues. We hear about what instrumentation is installed, it's range, and how to hold a chart in an open cockpit aircraft. Bill finishes up with a discussion of takeoff and landing distances and how some of it's characteristics could be modified.

  • Jim Vocell, Chief Pilot for the American Airpower Museum, Farmingdale, NY: Jim was displaying a 1944 C-47, a derivative of the DC-3, the first really reliable transport plane, for both passengers and cargo. He gives us a history of this particular plane, and how the American Airpower Museum came to own it. We get a comprehensive overview of the flight characteristics, including takeoff and landing distances, useful load, engines and props, range, and fuel usage. Jim gives some tips to pilots who may want to fly into Republic Field, where the museum is located.

  • Billy SegallaBilly Segalla, pilot with the Iron Eagles Acrobatic Team: Billy starts off with a little info on the two Christen Eagle aircraft flown by the team and a bit about their overall show schedule. The Eagle aircraft have an amazing power to weight ratio, allowing extremely tight turns. He talks about the differences between Eagles and Pitts as well as the custom modifications they've made. The aircraft are flown from show to show, including 3 1/2 hour over-water flights from Florida to Guatemala and El Salvador. Billy finishes with the upcoming schedule for the Iron Eagles.

  • Captain Emily NaylorCapt. Emily Naylor, C-5 pilot for the Air National Guard: Pilot Dan started off on the wrong foot by asking Capt. Naylor, "Are there any pilots around?" After a vain attempt at an apology, he went on with the interview. She starts off with how long she's been flying the C-5 and informs us the C-5 is the largest aircraft in the U.S. military. Capt. Naylor says it actually a very easy plane to fly, it just reacts a little slower to control inputs. She describes a typical long flight. She then talks about how she got her ratings and how it felt to go from piloting a small plane to the C-5 and finishes with why she thinks there are so few women in aviation and how to encourage them to get involved.

Hangar Flying:

First off, Pilot Kent did some flying to get some aerial photos of his accident site so it could be included with his accident report. Pilot Dan talks about the really terrible weather they've been getting on the East Coast, forcing quite a few flight cancellations. Pilot Mike describes his flight back from the 2006 Gaston's Fly In, and how he almost busted the St. Louis Class Bravo airspace because of an out of date marking on sectional chart. Chart updates can be found in your local AFD's. For you non-pilots who are listening, the crew give some explanation of the "pilot-eese" they were using to describe the different altitudes, airspace, charts, and AFD's. You can self report any infraction, and Pilot Mike tells you how and why you would want do that.

Show Links:
Direct download: Pilotcast_038_2006.06.29.mp3
Category:audio -- posted at: 10:19pm EST

A hangar flying session with pilot, author, and journalist Rinker Buck, reading from his book, "Flight of Passage".

Caution: Mildly explicit language.

Hangar Flying:

In this special feature of Pilotcast #37, we have a recording of author, journalist, and pilot Rinker Buck, presenting a reading from his book, "Flight of Passage" to the Oxford Flying Club at an FAA safety seminar on June 30, 2006. "Flight of Passage" is Rinker's recollection of the saga of his trip as a teenager with his brother Kernigan flying a Piper J3A Cub across the country to California. Keep listening for the great Q&A session at the end. Among other topics Rinker discusses his extensive research into the JFK, Jr. accident. Rinker likes to use "colorful" language at these readings so be aware that it should carry a PG rating.

Show Links:

Direct download: Pilotcast_037A_2006.06.20_R.BUCK.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:43pm EST

Hangar flying with Pilot Dan and Pilot Mike.

Pilot Kent is on the road is unable to join us. He had been involved in a serious truck accident, and is doing fine. As a matter of rehab, he went flying the very next day. His Macintosh PowerBook was destroyed, though, but has since been replaced by a brand new MacBook Pro.

Hangar Flying:
Piper the German Shepard Dog puppy

To start things off, Pilot Mike follows up on some of the goings on from last episodes, 2006 Annual Gaston's Fly In show.

Coming up on Pilotcast #37A, author and journalist Rinker Buck reads from his book, "Flight of Passage" about his cross country flight with his teenage brother across the U.S to California in a Piper J3A Cub in the 1960s. Caution: The next show file has mature language.

Looking ahead, Pilot Dan talks about some of the plans the crew have for the upcoming EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2006. We're planning on doing a roundtable Pilotcast from the show and are looking for a vendor area to record from. Next, as part of our Oshkosh 2006 preview, we play a segment from CFI, aviation author, and humorist, Rod Machado's talk from the 2005 Oshkosh.

On the next Pilotcast Dan will be reporting from the Westfield International Airshow where he will meeting with the Blue Angels and CMDR. Steven "Boss" Foley.

Show Links:
Rod Machado

Song: "Betty" by The Lascivious Biddies
Music on the Pilotcast is from the Podshow Podsafe Music Network. Check it out at

Direct download: Pilotcast_037_2006.06.22.mp3
Category:audio -- posted at: 10:03pm EST

Hangar flying with Pilot Kent and Pilot Mike from the 2006 Annual Gaston's Fly In.

Pilot Dan is unable to join us.

Hangar Flying:

We've got a little different show for you, this week. The crew is doing their very first "live" Pilotcast from the Gaston's White River Resort, in Lakeview, Arkansas. They start out with a little bit of history about the resort and the fly in, including who started the event when it first occurred. Pilot Kent tells us why he was so determined to be at Gaston's on Saturday morning, and how flew in and landed at 11:30 Friday night. He also describes his aerobatic flight in an Extra 300, with CFI Chip Gibbons.

Next we listen to a pilot roundtable, that includes Pilot Mike, Pilot Kent, CFI Dr. Bruce Chien, Pilot Lance Flynn, CFI Chip Gibbons, Pilot Steve See, Pilot Grant, Pilot Leslie, Pilot Spike Cutler, Pilot Kathryn, and Pilot Nick. To start things off, Pilot Lance retells the harrowing story of an engine failure while flying his Mooney from Atlanta, Georgia to Teterborough, New Jersey. Then there's a short discussion on some of the difficulties you can expect when landing on Gaston's 3200' grass runway. CFI Chip talks about how he got into aerobatic flying and how he got over the nausea he had when he first started. We hear a little about some of the different aircraft the flew in and CFI Chip give his reaction to learning that someone flew 20 hours cross-country in a Pitts. CFI Bruce describes the amazing mix of social activities that are going on, from a drive-in movie theater to an illicit card game. Pilot Steve, who acts as Gaston's unofficial air traffic controller, talks about his very unusual aircraft, an IAR-823. Everyone talks about why they keep coming back to the Gaston's Fly, and why the attendance grows every year. Pilot Grant and Pilot Leslie are husband and wife, and they tell about their experiences while training for their Private Pilots License at the same time. Pilot Spike has a little fun and show the "Gaston's International Airport Security" passes, he made. Pilot Katherine wins the award for the furthest distance traveled, coming from Anchorage, Alaska, to attend the fly in. The group talks about the wide variations in the condition of rental aircraft. Pilot Nick gives a quick description of bringing his new dog along from Albuquerque, New Mexico, and how you shouldn't make your cross country legs too long with a dog aboard. Lastly, Pilot Kent suggests that if you're not able to make it to Gaston's next year, put together a fly in of your own at a local airport.

Show Links:

Song: "Flying Away" by Empyrion from the State of Washington.
Song: "No More Summertime Blues" by Geoff Smith
Music on the Pilotcast is from the Podshow Podsafe Music Network. Check it out at

Direct download: Pilotcast_036_2006.06.10.mp3
Category:audio -- posted at: 10:09pm EST

Special guest "CFI Terry" Lankford, aviation author, weather expert and retired FAA flight service briefer, returns to join the Hangar Flying with Pilot Dan and Pilot Mike.

Pilot Kent is on the road and unable to join us.

Hangar Flying:

A while ago, we were contacted by Pilot Ron, who will be flying from California to Oshkosh, asking to get Terry back on the show to talk about long cross-country flights. Terry recently made a flight from California to Sun 'n Fun, in Florida, and details that trip for us. He starts out by telling us about the planning, including building in some "just in case" time, what charts and publications to carry, and what sorts of equipment you should have with you. We get tips on getting a long term weather outlook and using that forecast to plan your route and schedule. Then we hear about the actual trip, and some of the weather conditions he had to fight along the way. He also gives some tips on battling fatigue and choosing just what airports to land at. Terry gives some recommendations on what types of facilities you need to verify will be available at your destination. Pilot Mike gives an explanation of a "NOTAM Approach" that's typically used at larger fly-in events.

In the followup hangar flying, they talk about how the trip was done entirely without the aid of GPS, and Terry describes some of the avionics he used in the early '70s. He talks about the reduction in the Flight Service workforce and how to use some of the commercial services to compensate for possible delays. With his tongue stuck firmly in his cheek, Terry explains that, "Controllers are people, too." They all have a lengthy discussion on the procedures that are used when departing a large fly-in event at the same time as all of the other attendees. We then hear a description of his return flight, including an interesting approach pattern he was ask to fly at Wichita Falls Airport. He also talks about some of the best places to cross the Rockies and some of the flying techniques needed for high altitudes.

We finish up our hangar flying with a discussion on the risks of summer flying, with respect to weather. Terry gives some excellent tips on what to watch out for and ways to avoid getting into trouble. Thunderstorms, high density altitudes, and inversions/haze should all be carefully monitored. Pilot Mike also describes how some of the conditions that can cause a thunderstorm don't always show up on the weather monitors.

Show Links: View Terry's Route to Sun 'n Fun:
Terry's return route Terry's route

We're providing a couple of different ways to view the routes that Terry took to and from Sun 'n Fun. The first is to simply click on either of the thumbnail images to the right to load larger static depictions of the routes.

The alternate way to view the routes is with Google Earth. It's a free, downloadable application that allows you to view detailed satellite images of almost any point on the earth. If you don't already have a copy, you can get one here. Once you've got it installed, start it up and we'll set up a network link. To see the route Terry took to Florida, copy this entire address:

and go back to the application. Now, select "Network Link" from the "Add" menu. Type in "CFI Terry's Route" in the name section, paste the route address into the "Location" section, and hit return/enter. You should now have an overview map of the US showing all of the stop-over locations on Terry's trip. To view the return route, add another Network Link, but now use this address:

Song: "Texas Sky" by Val Davis  Music on the Pilotcast is from the Podshow Podsafe Music Network. Check it out at

Contact us at by email:   pilotcast (AT)
Direct download: Pilotcast_035_2006.06.01.mp3
Category:audio -- posted at: 1:56pm EST