Stalls: Mind over Matter

I headed out to Brantford airport (CYFD) yesterday to get some more practice with upper air work. I hadn’t flown since September so I was a bit rusty and definitely not ready to do the flight test. This flight was supposed to have taken place on Monday but as I was walking C-GINS around, mother nature decided it was time for flurries.

Picture of the ramp in flurries

Luckily this wasn’t the case yesterday and Ashley and I were able to get up there and get some work done. We took off runway 05, made a right turn to south and climbed to 3500’. Once we were between Oakland and Waterford I did a couple of steep turns, practiced some slow flight manoeuvres, power off / on and turning stalls then headed back to the field.

The steep turns went alright, although I still have problems figuring out the correct power setting to maintain altitude. I either give it too much, and start climbing or too little and descend. I stayed within tolerances though so that was alright. Slow flight went well, although I wasn’t sure if I was hearing the stall horn or not. Either way I hit 45kts and kept it there, did a 15° bank turn to North and recovered.

I have never been a fan of stalls. Something about falling out of the sky that just doesn’t feel right to me. Nevertheless they are part of the training and an item on the flight test. I find my body slowing down when recovering from a stall. Yesterday I forced myself not to think about the fact that the airplane is stalled but just focus on what needed to be done: nose slightly down to break the stall, wings level, power on, carb heat in flaps up. It worked fairly well and I was able to recover much faster from the stalls. I did end up causing a secondary stall when recovering from the power on stall but I think it was because I was so excited I had gone through the recovery procedure without slowing down.

All in all it was a good flight and I’m looking forward to a few more practice flights before attempting the practice flight test. Here’s a map overlay of the path we flew. It was recorded with the Lite version of MotionX GPS for the iPhone.

flight_april192011

P.S. The Brantford Flying Club has a new website which looks really great and is also on Twitter @BrantfordFC