Coming Back

I really appreciated LeRoy Cook’s article on returning to the cockpit after a long break [“Coming Back,” January 2018]. A few years ago I came back after seven years of not flying for various reasons. After about three hours in a 172, I evidently scared the instructor bad enough to clear me. Not long after that, I purchased a very nice Tri-Pacer. A friend went with me to pick it up (only about an hour-and- a-half flight home from Detroit). He flew most of the way while I just got used to being up again. I took it in for the landing at Y70 (Ionia County, Michigan) and really did it right. It took a good 30 hours for me to feel back at home in the air, even with several hundred hours and many types of birds in my log—instrument rated and all. I now own a Cygnet SF2A and only have 15 hours or so in it. Almost feels like starting again, but it is a gentle thing, and we are getting to know each other…carefully.

—Doran Jaffas

Picky, Picky, Picky!

I realize this is very picky but I guess it is a pet peeve of mine. In Dave Prizio’s excellent article [“Getting Your Plane Ready for the DAR,” October 2017], he mentions that “a pitot/static certification is not required unless you plan to fly IFR.” I find no mention of a pitot check in Part 91 of the FARs. The required certification for IFR in 91.411 is for the static system and has nothing to do with the pitot system. I think many pilots believe that when they get 91.411 certification, the airspeed (pitot system) is also checked. Of course, this is not the case. During the test, the pitot is connected to the test equipment so the airspeed indicator is not damaged, but it is not checked or required to be checked. OK, you can hit the “delete” button now. Thanks for listening.

—Jim Averett

Yeah Jim, it’s picky. Correct, but picky. However, sometimes I get in the mood to be picky, too. For example, it’s a condition inspection, not a conditional inspection. There’s nothing conditional about it. Then I get a beer and relax on the porch!—Ed.

Lithium Batteries

Many thanks to Jared Yates for writing a clear and concise article on the EarthX batteries. [“Understanding Lithium Batteries,” December 2017] Great job!

—Ken Ryan

Lithium batteries are a source of emotional angst for many. We thought that clearing the air by focusing on the pros and cons of LiFePO4 batteries would bring some real data to the discussion. We’re glad that you found it useful.—Ed.

More From Dave Anders

Just ran across a spreadsheet I did years ago that covers changes in performance for my RV-4 from 1993 to 2000. All data is from races, primarily the Sun 100 Air Race. I don’t know if this would be of interest to your readers, but feel free to share it.

—Dave Anders

Thanks, Dave! We posted the spreadsheet at www.kitplanes.com/anders-RV4.

For more about reducing drag and going faster, see Dave’s articles in the March, September, and October 2017 issues of KITPLANES. Also see Nigel Speedy’s story on page 22 in this issue.—Ed.

Write to [email protected].


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