Circuits Anyone?

Today was the day to take the plane to Nanaimo and work on my landings.

I hadn’t gotten the Contour camera mounted on the plane yet, but one of my students from Action Ultralights loaned me his GoPro camera, so I got it stuck on the forward fuselage before firing up.

On the first takeoff (leaving duncan), I wanted to try a tail low (but not quite 3 point) attitude instead of my normal (raise the tail fully) routine.  This is giving me more comfortable control of the plane, learning how to have it do what I want it to do instead of just plodding along.  It was nice just enjoying a bit of a cross country and getting to know the plane more.  The first thing I noticed is that the aileron trim tabs need a little tweaking, as I’m holding a little left rudder all the time…

For my first landing in Nanaimo, I tried my first wheel landing in the plane, and it went great!  Of course, the next two were miserable failures, porpoising down the runway, but at least I knew what was happening and how to recover…  The last three circuits got progressively better as I spent the time getting the final approach down in my head and the feel for the plane really started coming to me.

I taxied in and shut down to stretch my legs a bit before heading back.

I was feeling pretty good after my circuits in Nanaimo, so when I fired back up, the plan was to just come straight back to Duncan.  The FSS guy was great, it seems like he likes the Spacewalker II, and mentioned that he’d come by the Duncan airport some time.  Offering him a ride anytime, I firewalled the throttle and lept into the air 🙂

A quick trip back home (indicating 90kts at 2350RPM), and the normal Duncan arrival, brought me on final right where I wanted to be 🙂  With those landings in Nanaimo behind me, I was actually able to properly execute a wheel landing in Duncan!

For those of you who haven’t had the joy of flying into and out of the Duncan strip, it’s hard to explain how much of a chore doing the wheel landing is, but suffice to say I’m feeling particularly proud of myself 😉

Sadly, nobody was around the airport to congratulate me, but I’ve always got the video with the nice little chirp-chirp of the mains…

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