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AUSTRALIAN June - July 2017 Vol 70 No 3 Price $7.75 incl GST


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Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia MISSION STATEMENT AOPA stands for its members’ right to fly without unnecessary restrictions and costs. PRESIDENT Marc De Stoop IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT Phillip Reiss 0418 255 099 VICE PRESIDENT & SECRETARY Spencer Ferrier 0437 747 747 VICE PRESIDENT & TREASURER Dr Tony Van Der Spek DIRECTORS Catherine Fitzsimmons John Glynn Aminta Hennessy Dominic James Ben Morgan Neill Rear Mike Smith Phillip Yates

AOPA Youth Ambassador Michelle O’Hare MAGAZINE EDITOR Mark Smith ART DIRECTOR Melinda Vassallo 0413 833 161 Advertising 02 9791 9099 AOPA OFFICE Phone: +61 (0) 2 9791 9099 Fax: +61 (0) 2 9791 9355 Email: Executive Director Ben Morgan 0415 577 724 Membership 02 9791 9099 Accounts 02 9791 9099 Address Hangar 600 Prentice Street Bankstown Airport NSW 2200 All mail: PO Box 26 Georges Hall NSW 2198 ©AOPA Australia 2017. This work is copyright. Apart from any use permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced by any process without permission from AOPA. Printed by Graphic Impressions. AOPA by resolution of the Board has adopted database management practice that will allow selected and qualified aviation commercial interests access to the membership database for aviation promotional use that the Board deems acceptable as being informative to its members. The Privacy Act requires that members have the right to opt out of this marketing. Please advise the AOPA office if this is your desire.

Reporting Point This morning, just after the sun rose, I got out of bed. I have polished timber floors so there is always a slight risk I’ll slip and fall through the large bedroom window that’s about a metre from the bed. But it was a nice morning so I considered the risk of being cut to pieces by plate glass worthwhile since I was hungry and I’d given the butler the day off! After breakfast I had to drive into town. I live near a piece of major highway that carries a lot of large trucks and so I had B doubles passing my driver’s window at 100kmh. But I decided the risk was justified because I needed some aerospace supplies from Bunnings and you can’t land your helicopter in their car park, especially when you don’t have one. (The butler was using it!) Later in the day I went to fly my Corby Starlet. It’s a home-built, not by me, and uses a converted VW engine. It’s maintained by a LAME even though it’s in RAA, and while I’m sure the engine is reliable I won’t fly over any tiger country anytime soon. Again, there’s a risk, but I’m a big boy and I can make the decision to accept that risk and decide how to mitigate it. What am I on about? Society, and in our case CASA Avmed’s drive to completely rid the world of any risk someone can evaluate what they perceive is dangerous and are prepared to accept responsibility for their actions. It’s interesting that CASA had a brief foray into letting people decide if something was risky or not when they claimed Jabiru engines were in danger of failing at any second. After the furore that followed, they allowed people to continue to operate them provided they accepted there was a (supposedly greater) risk and put a few operational limitations on the aircraft. It’s the same with medicals. In New Zealand a pilot on an RPL with a drivers licence medical is required to tell his passenger that his certification isn’t up to the same standard as a regular PPL. The pax can make up their own mind if they are happy with the risk. It’s the same involving adventure flights with Australian Warbirds. The passengers are warned the aeroplane doesn’t meet CASA certification standards. The fact hundreds of these flights happen every week without incident shows the risk is pretty low, but CASA is happy to relax their vice-like grip and allow a slightly lower standard of certification providing the passenger and pilot accept there is possibly a slight increase in risk over what a passenger on an airline expects. CASA are examining the results of the discussion paper process regarding medical certification. Since I’ve edited Australian Pilot I’ve seen Avmed run a policy that tries to completely eliminate risk from the process of deciding if a pilot is fit to fly by ignoring what they fly and how often. That has to change. If the risk of a person being incapacitated while driving their private car on an Australian road is low enough that they are allowed to drive, they should be allowed to fly a simple, single engine aeroplane, regardless of weight, over open ground. If they are allowed to accept a permitted risk to fly a Jabiru or ride in an ex-military jet, they should be allowed to take the risk to fly solo over open ground. I have nothing against Jabiru engines and I’ve written about my thoughts on the CASA action in previous editorials. It’s the fact that one part of CASA allows people to decide risk for themselves, and another fiercely protects its turf and seems to be on a crusade to save people from themselves. Interestingly the most dangerous form of transport people use is motorcycles. Much like pilots, people who ride have a passion for their machines they have a hard time explaining. Imagine for a second if the government tried to impose risk mitigation policies that eroded a motorcyclist’s freedom to ride, like we are limited by regulation in our freedom to fly. It’d get very interesting, though there are lots and lots of bike riders, some with colourful arms and names like Slasher and One Hit Harry. They alone would make an interesting lobby group! It’s time to release the shackles that bind private pilots and let us decide whether we are fit to fly on the day. It’s time to let DAMEs make decisions about Class 2s and it’s time to introduce an RPL that CASA Avmed has no say in. Are Canada, New Zealand, the US or even the UK wrong in having a graduated medical system? This shouldn’t be so hard, and it shouldn’t take so long. Let’s get this medical farce fixed, otherwise we’ll keep losing pilots to other pastimes like motorcycles or sailing. I wonder if my wife would let me have a tattoo? Clear Prop. Mark Smith, Editor I AUSTRALIAN PILOT


Contents » AOPA At Work


Aircraft Review

President’s Report.........................................6

Safety - Emergency Manoeuver Training.......24

Aeropro EuroFOX....................................... 36

Badgery’s Creek latest...............................10

Ron Dickinson – Age is no Barrier..........27

Aviat Husky................................................... 48

What is General Aviation?......................... 12

Aero 17........................................................ 28

Welcome Members..................................... 16

Propellers - More Than Just a Fan

Piper M600................................................... 58

out Front.....................................................32

Calendar of Events

Woman Of Aviation Soars Again......... 40


Bobby and the Jets................................. 54 Flying the Sonex...................................... 56

Columns Are You Safe? – Mike Dalton.................... 19

Cover Feature

Two PPLs and aYear with No Flying..... 20

AOPA Aero Team..................................... 42


Travel Feature

Letters to the Editor................................... 22

Flinders Island, SA....................................52


Aviat Husky


AOPA Aero Team 4


AUSTRALIAN June - July 2017 Vol 70 No 3 Price $7.75 incl GST


Cover: Nigel Arnot in the SU 26. Photo: Mark Smith


! ar WinIN a ye ays

W nw n Oz Rucriptio subs

Piper M600: Turbine Luxury The Aviat Husky: Bush Flying Fun


The S.E.5a – WWI’s Spitfire..................... 63 Inside Doug’s Big Shed............................. 68

AOPA – Meet Our New Directors...........72

Membership Marketplace Classifieds......................................................77

AOPA Membership Form Join AOPA for Great Benefits.................. 81

Short Final A Very Memorable Ferry Flight.............. 82


Flying the Sonex


The S.E.5a – WWI’s Spitfire I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



President’s Report

After the AGM, Its Back to Business Our AGM was held on May 28th at the Sydney Flying Club at Bankstown Airport. A very big thanks to the club’s general manager, Joseph Pilo, and all at SFC for allowing AOPA free access to their facilities. Holding the AGM at an airfield was a good move as it was more convenient for members to fly in. Those who attended the AGM witnessed, in my opinion, a very professionally run event. It was very well-attended compared to previous year and a marked improvement from previous AGMs. We can thank the AOPA team lead by executive director Ben Morgan and very ably assisted by Kristina Brown and Virginia Thornburg for the successful event. I’m pleased to report for the first time since I’ve been associated with AOPA there were more nominations for board positions than seats available. To avoid a formal ballot three of our standing directors retired to make way for new members. I really appreciate their selfless assistance in avoiding a ballot. The new members bring gender and demographic diversity, as well as youth to the board; three important things that have been my priority since taking on the presidency. The retiring directors were Mark Smith, Dr Robert Liddell and Allan Bligh.

Dr Rob Liddell, as a DAME, has brought considerable medical expertise to our board. As a previous principal medical officer at CASA he was without doubt the best head that organisation has had, and was the pioneering doctor who worked through the protocols that now allow many pilots to fly with medical conditions the would have once led them to being grounded permanently. Rob was instrumental in issuing Bob Hoover an Australian Pilots Licence Medical after two FAA officers grounded him on spurious grounds. The FAA’s actions were later overturned in a court case. Bob, regarded as the greatest “stick and rudder man of all time” went on for several more years flying his iconic airshow routine safely and with great precision.

I have asked director, current secretary and past president Phillip Reiss, who has a lot more history on the AOPA Board than I, to formally thank the retiring directors for their service. Thanks Phillip.

Rob has had valuable input into our medical advocacy and the medical policy that we have now put to CASA. He has an extremely busy medical practice in Perth, and at Jandakot Airport, as well as being a very experienced pilot who flies Lear jets and Citations on medical evacuations.

Long serving board members Allan Bligh, Rob Liddell and Mark Smith are standing down at this AGM. Serving on the AOPA Board is a big commitment in time and energy and they have gone above and beyond in their efforts making significant contributions to AOPA during their tenure, and they will be missed.

Finding it increasingly difficult to devote the time necessary to AOPA board duties, he has decided to stand down at this AGM. Rob has served on AOPA board for five years and we have been very fortunate to have has his expertise on tap. His contribution to AOPA has been invaluable and thankfully he will continue to give advice to the association and its members.

Allan stepped into the role of temporary general manager when previous CEO Tim Blatch resigned due to health issues. Allan served in that GM role for six months until a new CEO could be recruited and then joined the board in 2010.

Mark Smith, as editor of our magazine Australian Pilot, has made a good magazine into a great magazine. Arguably the best general aviation magazine on the newsstands and that includes international publications, Mark manages single-handedly to put together an eclectic mix of articles that cover every aspect of GA from certified and sophisticated aircraft to warbirds, antique and light sport plus articles covering advocacy and flying activities.

Coming on board at a difficult time, Allan did a great job assisting us to restructure the office with his background, knowledge and experience of the industry honed by many years in aircraft sales. Allan’s long aviation career heading up the Piper dealership in Australia, and more recently as president of Schofields Aero Club (now Sydney Flying Club) and vice president of The Royal Federation of Aero Clubs (RFAC) in GA, was recognised by his OAM award for services to general aviation. He has been on the AOPA Board for seven years and served as secretary with great humour, which is very necessary at times.


We have been fortunate to have Allan represent AOPA on a number of government committees and he has been instrumental in raising our profile with all levels of government. Allan’s RFAC commitments and board position with the Sydney Flying Club, the largest flight training school in NSW, is a busy one with increasing responsibilities and we are grateful for the time he has given us and his assurance he will continue to support AOPA.


The added workload of AOPA board activities has increasingly meant that Mark has had to give up weekends and time with his family. He has also has had to divide his time between board and magazine duties. After serving on the AOPA board for two years he has decided to stand down to make way for directors who can devote more time to purely board activities, so he can apply his full concentration to the magazine where he feels best placed to continue his advocacy role on behalf of AOPA.


Marc De Stoop AOPA President

Mark is a dedicated advocate for GA in all its forms whether flying his Beech Musketeer with his wife or in his RA-Aus aircraft. He is a keen member of the Antique Aeroplane Association of Australia, RAA and Australian Warbirds. He will continue to attend airshows and club events all over Australia finding stories for our magazine, so his contribution to AOPA will continue. These brief summations of our retiring board don’t do full justice to the efforts that they have made on behalf of AOPA and GA, however they have been and will continue to be part of the AOPA family of aviators who give up their time in a voluntary capacity for the benefit of not just AOPA members, but the whole of GA. We thank them for their service to AOPA and GA. Thank you Phillip for the informative tribute to Allan, Rob and Mark. Going forward I warmly welcome to the board our new directors Aminta Hennessy, Catherine Fitzsimmons, John Glynn, Mike Smith, Dominic James and Phillip Yates. I look forward to working with all new and past directors, for the good of the membership and the revitalisation of general aviation in Australia. The CVs of the new directors are in this edition of AP I have called the new board together in June for a two day conference to develop an AOPA business plan covering the next two years of operations. . The aim is to give the executive a clear set of policy deliverables with guidelines and expectations. The board, along with its traditional governance and fiduciary duties, will monitor the effectiveness of the AOPA Executive delivering outcomes in accordance with the business plan. My plan is not to have the board micromanage the executive. The board must set the agenda and monitor the effectiveness of the executive on delivering that agenda. In previous years our finances were so strained that we could not afford any full-time employees. Thankfully that has now changed with increasing revenues and membership. Don’t get me wrong, we are not flush with funds as yet. We continue to need prudent control of expenditure. We are not out of the financial woods as yet, but we are making a comeback. We have a much improved financial position now than when I started and that is helping us make AOPA a more effective advocacy body. The big issue for me remains regulatory reform. I pulled together our policy agenda in Project Eureka before the last election. Despite a lot of nice Canberra rhetoric we, along with the TAAAF have failed so far in convincing the Coalition to adopt any suitable policy reform. All Minister Chester has done is called

for bureaucratic studies to see if there is a decline in GA activity in Australia. I am however pleased to report that Ben Morgan has managed over the past two months to meet Bill Shorten, Anthony Albanese, One Nation, Team Xenophon, The Greens and also a senior Minister in the Liberal party ( who wishes to remain anonymous given that the Nationals hold the portfolio) . The only political party that refuses to meet Ben are the Nationals. All people or parties Ben has met are considering taking up varying amounts of the Eureka policy framework. Some are cherry picking and some are looking at it in its entirety. But it’s a slow frustrating process where the feeling at times is that you are just getting lip service. It’s basically typical Canberra, filled with red tape, with no sense of urgency whatsoever about the huge problems we face. What is a very common theme from the meetings we’ve had is that AOPA’s high profile media campaign has the potential to deliver votes to each of the parties. Cynical but true. These are their words not mine. It would appear it’s the only way we can get attention and we’ll do whatever it takes to get the decisionmakers to realise these are problems that need addressing now, not in 12 months after three more studies and white papers. One of the most important tasks I want to hand on to new board member Mike Smith is to review and improve Eureka before re-energising our regulatory reform efforts in Canberra. Mike, unfortunately, was recently culled from the CASA DAS/ CEO position. He has an outstanding pedigree of regulatory reform (see his CV). I’m really surprised the CASA Board, who keep saying they’re looking for a reformist DAS, could cut him out so early in the selection process. Even though this is a sad outcome it’s good in one way. It has allowed Mike to sit on our side of the table in Canberra. It will be an interesting time ahead. In closing, I wanted to share an article I read in the American Business Aviation Insider Magazine how the FAA has reformed its culture and dealings with industry. It’s a couple of pages but I urge you all to read it. I hope the DAS interview/selection panel, as well as the CASA Board, read it and I hope one day we have a CASA culture that harmonises us with the FAA.

Marc De Stoop President I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



President’s Report John Duncan, head of the FAA’s Flight Standards service, explains the FAA’s new compliance philosophy Q: As the FAA’s new compliance philosophy works its way into the field, how is the transition going and what challenges do you see? A: We started the transition in October 2015, so we’ve been in the process for over a year. It’s important to say first that compliance philosophy is a significant change from how we’ve done business in the past. We’re moving from an enforcement-centric environment to one in which we can fix safety and compliance issues with training, education or changed procedures for those who are willing to cooperate in designing a corrective action. Those are called compliance actions. Compliance actions are not enforcement. The goal is to fix problems. For those who are not willing or able to comply, or simply do not want to co-operate, enforcement is still appropriate and necessary. One of the significant issues about the new philosophy is the recognition that enforcement is intended to rehabilitate operators or airmen who are unwilling or unable to comply, or to remove them from the National Airspace System (NAS). Operators or airmen who are unwilling or unable to comply represent the highest risk to safety. It’s not an operational issue; it’s an attitude issue. That’s an important concept. Q: Is the compliance philosophy universally applied, and not just to airmen? A: Yes, it’s universally applied. In Flight Standards, that means airmen, air operators and air agencies. It’s universally applied across the FAA, but the cultures in different parts of the agency are different, and other organisations may take a different approach than Flight Standards. As part of our culture change, we are improving the way we deal with stakeholders. For example, no is not an appropriate answer from an inspector. Q:  Do you think this new compliance philosophy will help improve consistency in the inspector workforce? A: Compliance philosophy, in general, has been practiced by some Flight Standards inspectors for years. Some inspectors thought this was the right way to approach issues and did so on their own initiative. Some inspectors knew it was the right thing to do, but did not implement it because they thought our guidance said they couldn’t. We also had those who just had an enforcement mentality. We’ve freed the first two groups to do the right thing for safety. Now we just have to deal with the last group. We are making that change and



becoming more consistent. But the question of consistency is a lot broader than that. As part of our culture change, we are improving the way we deal with stake­ holders. For example, “no” is not an appropriate answer from an inspector. “No, our policy doesn’t allow that” also is not appropriate. The answer will not always be “yes,” but “no, because here are the standards you’re not meeting” is an appropriate answer.  We expect inspectors to look at the circumstances and decide whether they believe the activity proposed meets regulatory standards. If the policy doesn’t accommodate that proposed activity we expect them to talk to their colleagues who wrote the policy. We own the policy. If appropriate, we can deviate from it in a structured way. Or we can rewrite it. This is a structured process that allows us to get to the right answer.  Our organisational structure does not support interdependence, so we are in the process of restructuring Flight Standards. The first element of the restructuring, with a target date of July 2017, will change the Flight Standards structure from eight regions into four functional suborganizations. The regional structure will go away and four functional organizations will take its place - an air carrier organisation, a GA organisation, a standards organisation and a foundational business organisation. Q: In some cases, safety management system (SMS) processes indicate that the hazards identified can only be corrected by regulatory change. Is the FAA willing to consider regulatory changes if SMS output suggests changes are necessary? A: Yes. Generally, what we’ve said is if the outcome of a safety risk analysis (SRA) points to a solution that’s within the regulatory boundaries, then do that. We are aware of some SRA outcomes that exceed regulatory limits. The mechanism for dealing with those issues is by exemption. The exemption process has existed for a long time and is risk-based. The challenge is that both the operator and the FAA must be satisfied that the risk analysis supports an exemption or, if appropriate, a rule change.

First published American Business Aviation Insider Magazine.


Events 2017 NEW SOUTH WALES Sunday





Kyneton Fly-in

Wagga Wagga Wagga Wagga Aero Club monthly BBQ lunch. Starts 12.00pm with a short flying event following. Details:

Watts Bridge Sunday


From 0800 till 1000. Fly or drive in for an airfield breakfast. Bacon, sausages, eggs, mushrooms, beans and bottomless tea and coffee. No landing fee and AVGAS available. Details:

Lismore Saturday

The Lismore Aviation Expo includes aircraft and aerobatic displays, classic car and motorcycles, drone racing, trade stands, joy flights, market stalls, children’s entertainment and food stalls. We would like to extend an invitation to you to join in the fun and be part of this fast growing, regionally significant community event. Should you have a light aircraft, vintage automobile or wish to join in the action in the sky, we would love to hear from you. Details:


The Kyneton Aero Club "Hot Dog" Saturday fly in is held on the first Saturday each month. Between 12 - 1 pm the members of the club will be selling "Gourmet Dog's" and drinks for those that wish to drop in. Everyone is invited to come along for a "Hot Dog" at the Kyneton Aero Club. So make a day of it and come along and meet fellow aviators, enthusiasts or catch up with friends. All profits raised from this event will be going into supporting the Neuroscience Foundation. Details:



Echuca Sunday

18th JUNE


Cessnock CASA AvSafety Seminar will be held at the HRFC Clubhouse in Grady Rd Pokolbin (Western Side of Cessnock Airport) on Tuesday 27th June commencing at 6pm and running to 8pm. A light meal will be served following the seminar. There is no charge and all Members and visitors are welcome. Those intending to attend, should preregister on the CASA AvSafety website if possible, otherwise registrations will be accepted on the night. Details:



10th JUNE

6th MAY

Find us on Facebook AOPAaustralia

Roast Lunch and flying competitions. The third Sunday of the month is Echuca Aero Clubs Roast Lunch Day. Beautiful two meat roast and vegetables with all the trimmings and homemade desserts. Fly In or drive, $20 a head, kids eat free. Details:

Angelfield Breakfast Fly-in Fly-in breakfast held every two months on the second Saturday. A hearty breakfast is served from 7.30am to 9.30am. $15 a head includes bottomless freshly brewed coffee. Details:

Stradbroke Island Saturday



Straddie Fly-in Breakfasts are held on the 3rd Saturday of every month from 8.30 a.m. to 10.00 a.m. Breakfast includes: Fruit Platters, Bacon & Eggs, Sausages & Eggs, Mushrooms, Baked Beans, Creamed Corn, Tea, Coffee & Fruit Juice. Details:

Warwick Sunday

23rd JUNE

Jumpers & Jazz Brekky Fly-in is to be held at Massie Aerodrome near Warwick (YWCK) on 23 July, starting at 8am. Following breakfast transport will be arranged for those wishing to go in to Warwick to enjoy some time checking out Warwick’s quirky Jumpers & Jazz festival. Details: I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Airservices Responds to AOPA Concerns About Sydney Airspace AOPA board comment This response relates to a letter sent to Airservices Australia that was also published in Australian Pilot in April May 2017 on page 20. The full article has been published on our website, www. aopa. We applaud Airservices CEO Jason Harfield for his detailed response. AOPA continues to question the need to build Badgery’s Creek when there is an existing transport category facility at Richmond that would require far less investment to provide the same result for the travelling public. We will also be extensively lobbying government to ensure AOPA is a part of any committee providing advice on airspace design if and when Badgery’s Creek moves into the final design stages. Bankstown Airport is far too important to general aviation in the Sydney basin for its important airspace to be sacrificed on the altar of misguided political mismanagement. Every pilot knows once any part of aviation infrastructure is lost, and that includes airspace, it is never given back. n





What is General Aviation? Virginia Kruse asks a question with no easy answer. They are the seventh and first letters of the alphabet which carry with them a much weightier meaning: they stand for general aviation, which means more than just aeroplanes. It is a large industry which continues to be misunderstood even after all the years of aviation organisations lobbying various governments and their agencies. The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics defines GA as covering all Australian registered aircraft used in the general aviation and regional airline sectors of the Australian aviation industry. But again it is much more than this. “The more common definition includes activities such as provision of spare parts, supplies and services in support of general aviation operations, as well as covering the actual operation of aircraft,” wrote the authors of a report from the Bureau of Transport Economics in 1980. These broader activities were not included within the scope of the study conducted by the BTE. Firstly, let us look at the words. General, well this could relate to anything. It is a nebulous word yet it has become synonymous with aviation because of the breadth in its meaning. If we take the word aviation we get some idea as to what we’re really talking about; namely aeroplanes or man-made objects that take to the sky and fly with a person on board to direct their operation. Yet again it still doesn’t fully explain GA. It misses the most vital point: that of the human activity that surrounds aircraft. It is this activity that gives us the true meaning of aviation. It’s the human element that is missed each and every time governments and their respective departments communicate with the industry. It is the bureaucrats, who are charged with the responsibility to regulate the industry through the rules and regulations that they write, who do not understand the industry. So who makes up the human element of general aviation? They are the mums and dads prepared to take the risk to establish a business to do something they love, working with aeroplanes. It might be that they operate a flying school or charter operation or have a maintenance organisation, or they might be an avionics specialist. Perhaps they are designing and manufacturing an aircraft, one of a rare breed today in Australia. The aircraft can be anything from fixed wing to rotary blades, from metal to fabric, from one seat to several seats, from training to sports, but they have



one thing in common - they are what makes aviation tick. Many people take for granted that an airline is the quickest way to get from point A to point B. What they don’t think about is that even these had their genesis in the little end of aviation. Remember the Wright brothers? Or Australian aviation pioneers Lawrence Hargrave, and Qantas founders Sir Hudson Fysh, Sir Fergus McMaster, Paul McGinness and Arthur Baird? Those working in the big end of aviation, the pilots, engineers, maintenance crews and the like, are often trained in GA. They didn’t just wake up one morning and strap into the pilot seat of a Boeing or Airbus and take off, except in their dreams. The aviation entrepreneurs in GA have made a considerable contribution to this country through their commitment to the industry that we are members of. Their investment has meant committing the roof over the head and even the shirt off their back, to build a business serving the industry and wider public. It is these business people, together with pilots, who are forever weighed down by the rules and regulations written by people who, I believe, don’t fully understand aviation. Why don’t they understand? Because they have not made the same financial commitment to the aviation industry that those in it have. Our politicians and bureaucrats go to work and get paid even when they are sick. They are also provided with a superannuation fund and, depending on their position, even a travel allowance or departmental car and that’s the extent of their commitment to aviation. It is their job! The aviation businesses not only have to find the money to pay for the roof over their head but also the rent to pay the airfield operator for the land the business sits on. This used to be the Federal Airports Corporation’s responsibility until the government sold airfields to private enterprise who seek a higher rate of return on their investment than the 17.9% the FAC received. Or, in the case of the regional airfields that were given to the local councils to operate, many used the money for other projects then came with hands outstretched seeking finance for the upkeep of their airfield. At the time the government did not want to know what the industry was saying and that their actions would have a negative impact on the safety and future viability of the industry. These entrepreneurs then build or buy the infrastructure


they need. So every day they open the doors and work. No matter how many staff they employ they have to find the money at the end of the week to pay them, their superannuation and the tax man and the rent for their facility that they paid for. If there is anything left over they pay themselves. Then there are all the other businesses who depend on them for the service they provide. Spare parts, refuelling, the courier company who delivers parts for maintenance - they all matter. Some might say that thousands of others in business have the same outlays. They do, but unlike aviation businesses they can relocate if they don’t like their landlord, or if they don’t like the people next door or can’t afford another rent increase. Aviation is unique because it is location specific. Most of it is totally dependent on an airfield to operate from, and the government knows this. The wealth of the industry lies in this collective of small business owners and operators at city, regional and remote airfields across the country. While the government panders to the airlines, they continue to divest the other end of the industry with impunity. The government recognises the wealth of the industry and views it as a cash cow. For some time it has been seen as an annoying group of business who they wish would just go away. At the AOPA forum at the recent Avalon Air Show, I was shocked and saddened to hear comments from CASA acting director of air safety Shane Carmody that he is not a pilot and he knows nothing about aviation. He is employed by the government to do a job, to make sure that the rules

and regulations are adhered to - in other words he is the policeman of the industry. This is the man who is telling us what to do, how we are to do it and heaven help us if we dare to question his authority. I have had dealings with others who have sat in his chair and all have been gentlemen to the core. They at least spoke to and treated the people in the industry with respect. I have dealt with others in his position who seemed more engaged with the industry they administer. They at least had the courtesy to come to the coal face and personally find out what makes the industry tick. After one DAS accepted an invitation to visit the grass roots of the industry at Bankstown Airport, he commented to me: “I really didn’t understand what you were saying and you are right, the industry is something quite unique and the people are truly dedicated even in the face of adversity. I can see we have to change our thinking and our ways to work with you, starting right now.” This current draconian attitude has been going on for far too long, not just a few years but at least two decades and we sit by watching our industry slowly disappear at the hands of those who do not understand it and who don’t want to understand it, who consider us a piranha on their precious time. They pit the bureaucrats of one state against those in another state. They pit business against business and they take whatever they can from the lone pilot. The bureaucrats do as the government tells them to do yet none of them have made any financial commitment to the industry or its future survival and that’s the bottom line of this whole argument. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



What is General Aviation?

They will take every last drop from us but they will not give back. They will not take the time, effort or the energy to understand those people who make up the industry and it’s not just Mr Carmody with this attitude - it seeps through from the government all the way down to the bottom of the bureaucratic ladder. We must remember that the position is only the instrument of the minister of the day. The industry has been brow-beaten long enough by the powers that be. It has nearly been costed out of existence, regulated beyond rationality with the words fairness and sensibility having been removed from its language. The industry has received the negative brunt of every government over the past 25 years and the fact that it is still here is testimony to the character of the people and their determination to continue what was started nearly 114 years ago. It is an indication of their courage and fortitude to keep the industry going and growing no matter who is in government or what bureaucrats of the day wield the power. It is they who have the qualities that make this industry a great one and one I have been proud to have



been a member of. There is one person who has voiced the anger and frustration of the industry, a like-minded person who does not hold back and says what needs to be said. What you see is what you get and what I see is the passion he has for AOPA but more pointedly, the passion he has for the industry. Yet in speaking the truth the government minister, the management and others in the departmental empires do not like what they hear. This bright, energetic and enthusiastic young leader is the new vanguard of the industry and those who make the rules and regs need listen to him and listen very carefully, because he is saying what more and more of us think, feel and believe - that the government and CASA don’t give a damn! The industry needs to get behind him. Thank you Ben Morgan. Virginia Kruse. Past president, Bankstown Airport Chamber of Commerce, and co-owner of Sydney Aerobatic School and the Red Baron. n











2 Apr

Flight One

Archerfield Airport



22 Apr

Sigma Aerospace

Tamworth Airport



23 Apr

Armidale Aero Club

Armidale Airport



30 Apr

Cirrus Perth

Busselton Aero Club



7 May

Cirrus Perth




13 May

Hastings River Aero Club

Port Macquarie Airport



14 May

Coffs Harbour Aero Club

Coffs Harbour Airport



19 May

Aero Services




20 May

Pt Lincoln Aero Club

Port Lincoln



21 May

Aldinga Aero Club




21 May

Cirrus Sunshine Coast

Caloundra Airport



21 May

Cirrus Perth

Bunbury Aero Club



3 Jun

Naracoorte Aero Club




3 Jun

Mt Gambier Aero Club

Mt Gambier



4 Jun

Warrnambool Airport




4 Jun

Southport Flying Club (8am to 11am)




4 Jun

Air Gold Coast (1pm to 4pm)

Gold Coast Airport



10 Jun

Shepparton Aero Club




17 Jun

Latrobe Valley Aero Club

Latrobe Valley



17 Jun

Royal Newcastle Aero Club

Maitland Airport



18 Jun

Central Coast Aero Club

Warnervale Airport



24 Jun

Bankstown Flying School

Bankstown Airport



25 Jun

Darling Downs Aero Club

Toowoomba Airport



1 Jul

Bathurst Aero Club

Bathurst Airport



2 Jul

Orange Aero Club

Orange Airport



8 Jul

Ballina Aero Club

Ballina Airport



9 Jul

Dubbo Aero Club

Dubbo Airport



15 Jul

Cirrus Melbourne / Avia Aviation




5 Aug

Smart Air




12 Aug

Lillydale Flying School




12 Aug

Rockhampton Aero Club

Rockhampton Airport



14 Aug

Horizon Airways

Mackay Airport



20 Aug

Merimbula Airport (Morning)




20 Aug

Frogs Hollow Fliers (Lunch)

Frogs Hollow - Bega



26 Aug

Bluewater Aviation

Townsville Airport



2 Aug

Bundaberg Aircraft Services and Maintenance

Bundaberg Airport



23 Sep

Wagga City Aero Club

Wagga Wagga



7 Oct

Aero Club of Southern Tasmania




8 Oct

Tasmanian Aero Club




21 Oct

Canberra Aero Club


Contact Regional Director, Graham Horne, for more info. 0408 983 315






Bill Cummins – Private Pilot, Proud AOPA Member Bill Cummins is on the other side of 70 and learned to fly on Victa Airtourers in 1964. “It was a great Aussie design,” he says. “The aircraft I did my first solo in is still flying today.” Bill joined AOPA in the early 1970s, seeing its role as an important one in standing up for pilots. “I joined AOPA because I felt it was a link with aviation that gave us a voice with the then Department of Civil Aviation. It was also a great way to keep up to date with what was going on in the industry via the magazine.” He’s still a member all these years later, seeing the association’s current focus just as vital today as it was 40 years ago. “Today they are working on issues, like trying to get rid of the ASIC card, and decent medical reform. Those are important things to many pilots. Plus the magazine is still great.” Be like Bill and the thousands of aviation enthusiasts just like him. Join AOPA, and help us fight for a fair go for GA. n

Welcome New Members Name


Mark Crouch

New Zealand

Nicholas Mason

Ivan Krippner

New Zealand

Fraser Watt

Brendan Burns



Glenn Bridgland


Martin Daniell



George Griffiths


Keith Luckhurst


Judy Hodge


Michael Mcintosh


Owen Horton


Jonathan Kelly



Kevin McCabe



David Treacey


Barry W. Gartshore


Michael Donald

Nicholas Politis Clark Rees



Adam Blennerhassett


Bryan Hayley


Jeremy Browne


Andrea Nowitz


Brian Hamilton


Sharon Sebastian


Michael Jones


Doug J. Stott




New version packed with new features

Stay OnTrack with CASA’s newly updated VFR pre-flight planning tool for fixed- and rotary-wing pilots Now accessible on mobile devices



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Aviation rules have changed New licensing rules started on 1 September and apply to all pilots and flying training organisations. The rules have also changed for anyone who taxis aeroplanes or uses aeronautical radio. While there are transition periods in place, it’s important that everyone who is affected by the rules knows about the changes. To find out more visit the Licensing Regulations section on the CASA website at


Ph: (national) 1300 30 8700 Ph: (local) 03 9816 3264 Fax: (03) 9816 3270. A.H: 03 9857-5963, 0433 278700 Website: Email:





Are You Safe? Mike Dalton

Mike Dalton reminds us to look closely at ourselves before we fly. I was attending a flight school recently for a theory course to upgrade my flying

Fatigue poses a significant risk to aviation safety. Commercial operations

qualifications and during a break found this great check list on the notice board:

have certain controls aimed at alleviating the risk but for private operations the onus

Flight fitness The IMSAFE Check List: I


Do I have an illness or any symptoms of an illness?



Have I been taking prescription or over-the-counter medication?



is on the individual. There is nothing that prevents the private pilot from working a long shift at work, then climbing in the plane and heading off on a trip. The checklist says Energy for E and

Am I under psychological pressure from the job, worried about financial matters, health problems or family discord?

I totally agree we all need adequate



Have I been drinking within eight hours? Within 24 hours?

nourishment, energy and rest but more



Am I tired and not adequately rested?

often these days I think we need to



Am I adequately nourished?

consider emotion. Our mental health seems to be challenged more and more these days and we really must consider

I imagine many readers will be aware of

as pain relievers, sedatives and cough

this and I’m sure you will agree that it’s

suppressants may affect judgment and

a fairly simple and worthwhile check list

coordination as can antihistamines, blood

or depressed?

to follow. Let’s face it, as pilots we know

pressure tablets and, importantly

lie under the surface and not be obvious

checklists and have one for just about

some pilots … motion sickness relievers.


if there is anything bothering us before we fly. Am I feeling angry, sad, impatient Negative emotions can

to others but can reveal themselves

every action we perform in and around

Flying itself can be stressful enough

at the worst time and lead to tragic

the cockpit, but how many of us actually

with weather challenges, serviceability

consequences. It’s difficult for us to take

use one (like this) before we leave home?

issues and the like. But stresses associated

an honest emotional stock-take, but is it

An illness as simple as a head cold can

with everyday life and business can create

worth the risk to not do so?

seriously degrade our performance in the

distractions that occupy our thought

So who is this checklist for? Clearly

cockpit, let alone make us feel absolutely

processes. Distractions interfere with

it’s designed for each of us to apply to

miserable, and can produce symptoms

judgment and performance and can lead

ourselves, honestly, every time we intend

that impair our judgment, alertness and

to taking unwarranted risks and, when,

to fly. But I also think the onus is on each

ability to make decisions. More complex

combined with fatigue can lead to tragic

and every one of us to keep an eye out

illnesses that affect our mental health can


for our fellow aviators and be prepared

pose a serious risk to our performance

Alcohol can have disastrous effects on

and should be treated by a medical

our ability in the cockpit. Look no further


than how it affects us when we get behind

It’s not an easy thing to say to a mate

to challenge them if we think they’re not passing muster.

Medications can seriously degrade

the wheel of the car to envisage the

“sorry but I don’t think you should be

our performance in the cockpit. Both

results on the air. But the risk from alcohol

flying” especially knowing how addicted



is much more subtle than flying drunk.

some people are to flying, but I imagine

medicines can have as negative an impact

It possesses similar risks to medications

it’s better than sitting back saying nothing

on our performance as the illness they

and fatigue even when consumed in small

and then thinking after an accident … “if

seek to redress. Common medicines such


only I had said something”. n




Two PPLs and a Year With No Flying Fraser Watt details more CASA lunacy that keeps pilots on the ground I love to fly. Not to get anywhere, just for the joy of being up there. I am a fair-weather pilot. I never really wanted an instrument rating. I fly for fun. I log less than 40 hours a year. I prefer laminar air. You can’t see much on days of eight oktas anyway. I learned to fly with the Royal Victorian Aero Club at Point Cook in Victoria. Mark Smith, the editor of this magazine and an AOPA board member, introduced me to flying … long before he was either of these two things. Mark owned a Cessna 150. He kept it at Point Cook. Mark’s kids and my kids went to the same school and that’s how we met. He seemed to be a nice guy, a press photographer…. with an aeroplane. One day in 1999, Mark invited me to fly with him. Mark is not a small guy and neither am I, but we squeezed into the C150 and taxied to Runway 17. A short take-off run saw us airborne and overhead Point Cook. We banked left and headed for the Melbourne CBD. I was fascinated with the view of the ground from 1500ft as we tracked the coast heading toward Westgate Bridge. All too soon we were back at Point Cook. Mark had joined the circuit and I had joined that group of people who just need to be in the air. A TIF with RVAC followed then a medical and a student pilot’s licence, and over the next few months came a steady path of study and experience in a Piper Warrior. For many people their first solo that is the standout in their flying career, for me it was first area solo; getting away from the circuit, south to the Bellarine Peninsula training area, trimmed and level at 3500ft with nothing else to do but keep one eye on the instruments and the other out for other traffic. I eventually convinced an examiner that I was fit to hold a licence. There was immense joy in taking my kids flying; doing a circuit over our house and waving down at mum, or taking friends and family up to do a bit of faux ‘whale watching’. Who cared whether there were whales or not? It was all about being up there. Then I got caught up on the corporate ladder. My company moved me to another office, and then to Asia and then North Queensland. I let flying slip. 2013 found me working in Christchurch, New Zealand, helping with the post-earthquake rebuild. I passed a large sign: Canterbury Aero Club, Why not learn to Fly”. That same weekend I dropped in to the club for a chat. Unlike Point Cook, which was an MBZ, Canterbury Aero Club is based at Christchurch International Airport, in Class C Controlled Airspace.



A short chat with reception had me signed up for a few refresher lessons. The club has an extensive and varied fleet but I requested a Warrior, an aircraft I was confident I would be able to handle. I was wrong! This was a Piper Warrior III complete with glass cockpit and digital comms. Where were my beloved dials? My simple radio? Back on the ground I spoke with the instructor and CFI and worked out a plan to get me to an NZ PPL. It seemed simple enough. Re-do two exams (NZ aviation law and meteorology), do some local flying training (things like mountain flying that in NZ you do lots of) and then a BFR. As we progressed it became obvious that the NZCAA regulatory framework could be an issue. Australia and NZ are not wholly aligned on PPLs and a PPL, unlike a commercial licence, is not transferable between jurisdictions. The easiest path to a NZ PPL was simply to do the whole thing again: all of the exams, all of the flight tests, and of course, a Class II (Class B) Medical which incidentally was issued by a NZ DAME who is also on the CASA list. I did this, and in December 2013 I became the proud holder of a NZ PPL (which is how I wound up with two PPLs) and eventually also a 1/3 owner of Echo India Papa, a Piper Archer II that I had great fun with, flying between Christchurch International, Rangiora and West Melton - the three airfields at which CAC has a presence. I happily conversed with ATC and shared my sky with Emirates and Singapore 777s as well as Air NZ 737s and ATRs. In mid 2014 I scheduled a holiday back to Australia. My youngest daughter was at university in Sydney and the prospect of flying in Australia was very appealing. I read up on the applicability of my situation. After all I now held both an Australian and NZ PPL, had a current NZ Class B (Class II) medical that had been issued by a CASA -listed DAME, and was current on a Piper PA-28 in NZ but not Australia. Confused, I contacted CASA. CASA explained my Australian PPL does not expire, but to exercise the privileges of a private pilot I needed to have a current medical certificate and have logged three take-offs and landings in the previous 90 days. I advised that I was living in NZ, had a current NZ medical issued by a CASA-registered DAME and was flight-current in New Zealand. This was not sufficient. Even though my NZ DAME was also a CASA DAME, my DAME had apparently examined me as a New Zealand PPL holder and not an Australian PPL holder. When he examined me he had relied


upon his NZCAA certification as an aviation medical examiner and not his CASA certification as an aviation medical examiner, hence my NZ medical examination was not recognised in Australia by CASA Avmed. Therefore I was out-of-medical and could not fly in Australia on my Australian licence. There was, however, an option. An arrangement exists between Australia and New Zealand to allow NZ PPL holders to fly in Australia for up to three months if an application is made to CASA sufficiently in advance of the visit. When I asked how much notice I needed to give, I was advised it was around 12 weeks. I only had three weeks before my trip. I tried an alternate tack. As an Australian PPL holder who is current (through flying in NZ) and who holds a current NZ medical issued by a CASA DAME that would be recognised in Australia for three months, I asked if CASA could fast-track my application, since I seem to have all of the factors that would be accepted by CASA for a non-Australian PPL holder, plus I held a valid Australian PPL. “No!” And besides CASA had no record of me holding an ASIC card. This had me confused. What was an ASIC card? (I had been out of Australia for nearly 10 years). It was explained that this card was needed for airside security and I would need to apply for one if I wished to use my Australian PPL at any airfield that handled commercial traffic. So I asked: “If I come back on holiday next time I need to give CASA 12 weeks notice and apply for an ASIC card?”. “No sir,” came the reply. “That only applies if you are relying on your Australian PPL. If you apply under your NZ PPL you don’t need an ASIC card.” Then I confirmed that if I ever moved back to Australia and gave CASA 12 weeks notice I could fly in Australia for 12 weeks on my NZ PPL until I got my Australian medical. “Yes,” was the reply. Just to get everything straight, I clarified the conversation: “As an Australian citizen I have an Australian PPL and a NZ PPL and a PPL medical issued by a CASA-listed DAME in NZ and am flight-current. If I wish to fly in Australia on my Australian PPL I cannot because I have no current aviation medical recognised by CASA Avmed and no ASIC card. If,

however, I apply 12 weeks in advance I can come over and fly on my NZ PPL on my NZ medical and with no ASIC card?” The answer from CASA: “Yes. It all depends upon which aviation document you intend to rely.” I came home on holiday and enjoyed a nice flight from Bankstown, up and over the northern beaches, with an instructor at my side and my daughter in the back. In January 2016 I returned to Melbourne to live, which meant selling my share in the Archer and farewelling NZ skies. I forgot to advise CASA I was coming, so no flying on the NZ PPL. Immediately after the move I was busy finding a house and making it a home, establishing myself in my new job, and all of the other things that consume your free time. I eventually found a few hours to renew my aviation medical. I wanted to get my Australian Class II medical while I was still current from NZ. I wasn’t worried about it. I still had my current NZ medical, with more than 12 months to run, issued by a CASAapproved DAME. I found that a doctor I used to see when I previously lived in Melbourne was on the CASA list and made an appointment. I passed! I now had two CASA-approved medical examiners who had, independently of each other, signed off on my fitness to fly. Then CASA Avmed stepped in. I weigh around 117kg right now and have done for many years. My blood pressure is fine, I am not diabetic, and I passed an electrocardiogram for the NZ medical. I had passed two separate assessments by two CASA DAMEs in two different countries within 12 months. CASA Avmed were not satisfied. I received a request to undertake additional testing for glucose tolerance and sleep apnoea. So why does CASA have no faith in its DAMEs? Getting a new home and new career into order means little time for anything else. Two more days off work for supplementary medical testing to enable me to fly 40 hours a year was not going to happen. Hence zero flying hours logged in 2016. Things are easing up a little now. The new job has settled down, the new house is decorated, the garden is looking good and the wife is looking more relaxed, so my plan for 2017 is to go back to the DAME, do the Class II medical yet again and wait to see what CASA Avmed has to say this time! n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Letters Letters We value your opinions about everything to do with aviation and so we are happy to announce a one year subscription to Oz Runways for the author of the best letter we receive for publication. It can be about how AOPA is doing, something that happened when you’ve been out flying, or a concern you think we should look at. It’s your chance to set the agenda. The address is, or PO Box 26 Georges Hall, NSW 2198.


WINNER! Michael Solomon has a familiar tale about Avmed. I have written to AOPA before on the matter of Avmed’s outrageous requirements imposed on me to keep flying. I have just completed yet another round of tests prior to seeing my DAME and the cost incurred by me to satisfy Avmed’s audit requirements have cost $832. My cardiologist was again surprised that I was being required to go through this annual routine which he considered excessive given my general health. It would be understandable if I had had a significant event to warrant these requirements demanded by Avmed, but I haven’t. I’m happy to share the cardiologist’s report with you if you need a second opinion. My stress test resulted in me achieving 127% of maximal predicted heart rate.

As my cardiologist remarked “it’s like being in the army, the orders may not make any sense but we still have to carry them out”. My DAME said he was writing to Avmed recommending my next medical renewal be in two years instead of the 12 monthly they impose on me currently. Today, I received my Aviation Medical Certificate for 12 months. I am now seriously considering that after this year and 52 years of flying that I will not renew my licence when it expires in March next year because of the impost of meeting Avmed’s requirements and the cost and associated inconvenience.

Pete Spence has an opinion about medical reform. I keep reading about attempts to so called ‘reform’ the medical system for pilots. I’ve held a private licence for 16 years, maintain a good standard of health, and think the system is fine. To be referring to the standard for a driver’s licence for flying is disingenuous because they are two completely different activities, though I feel driver’s medical standards should be increased more in line with pilot’s medicals than the other way around. This would also go some ways to making RAA much safer.



Ed: I don’t normally respond to letters but with this I’ll make an exception, as I’m sure will others. Our campaign to reform medical certification standards is backed by a lot of DAMEs who see their professional expertise constantly undermined by CASA Avmed. It is also based on incapacitation statistics gained from years of RAA operations that have shown pilots operating under their medical standard aren’t falling out of the sky due to medical issues.






Win Oz R a years subs unways cript ion

Member Peter Damian is concerned about language skills at some training airfields. I fly from an airfield in Victoria where there is a lot of

I have a friend who was born overseas, in an English

training involving airline cadets from overseas. At times

speaking country, who had to submit to an English

it is almost impossible to understand their radio calls,

competency test as a part of getting her licence. If that’s

making a busy circuit even more dangerous. I have counted

the case, how do these students get certified as being

seven aeroplanes in the circuit at the one time, with other

competent in the English language to fly here? Many seem

students joining after navigation exercises and area solos.

to display a complete lack of genuine comprehension of

When I hear a call I don’t understand I query the pilot,

what’s being said to them, and what the appropriate reply

though unless they have an English proficient instructor on

is. For the record I am a retired English teacher.

board I am always left with silence. It’s obvious they don’t

Put simply this is an accident waiting to happen.

understand my call since it’s not on their script.

Veteran pilot Ron Dickinson sent a touching response to being presented with a lifetime achievement award by AOPA executive director Ben Morgan. l would like to thank you in writing for the great honour you

PPL and our two daughters who went solo at Lilydale Flying

bestowed on me in presenting me with the AOPA Achievement

School. We have great pride in our grandson William who we

Award, at the Bonanza Pilots Proficiency Program weekend at

were pleased to introduce to flying at a very early age and,

Narromine. It was a great and unexpected surprise to be given

will give us joy to attend his graduation parade at the Pearce,

such acknowledgement. I feel very humble at the receipt of

WA, defence base in September where he will be presented

this plaque which takes pride of place on our dining room

with his wings as a Navy pilot.

sideboard, and which I view in wonderment every day.

Once again thank you for your friendship and courtesy to

I really feel that Aylsa deserves to share in this award as

us both. I originally joined AOPA at a very early time in its

she has flown most of my hours in the air alongside me in the

existence in the early 195Os. After we were married in 1951

co-pilot’s seat since 1949. She has given me encouragement,

we had very little money so flying went on hold for a time.

inspiration and enjoyment to share the many experiences

Then returning to the air I joined again once more. I am very

with. She has reminded me of cockpit checks as my safety officer and also been my navigator and companion. We have shared the joy of flying with our son who has his

grateful for all the good work that the organisation does on behalf of the flying community and I look forward to your continued success. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Emergency Manoeuver Why You Need to Do It!

AOPA’s Youth Ambassador Michelle O’Hare discovers unusual attitude recovery training is fun, and potentially lifesaving. Picture this. It’s a beautiful day for flying, with no wind and smooth air. You join the circuit behind a King Air and slow to around 80kts. Suddenly the world turns sideways as your stable aeroplane is thrown beyond the vertical by the wake turbulence generated from the aeroplane ahead and you are seeing the world as you never have before. Simple question. Would you be able to recover your aircraft if it was unexpectedly placed in such an unusual attitude? What Is EMT and why should I give it a go? During our initial flight training we are all taught how to recover from or prevent emergency situations. Yet loss of control remains the second highest primary cause of light aircraft accidents - the first being collision with terrain which is also likely to be as a result of loss of control. When I first met Peter Townsend, the instructor at the Australian Aerobatic Academy, he explained that ‘Emergency Manoeuvre Training (EMT) has been developed to increase flight safety by giving pilots a greater level of confidence and increased general aircraft handling skills. “This training focuses on accurate



and confident aircraft control, emergency recovery techniques and exposure to common emergency situations including stalls, spins and unusual attitudes,” he said. A pilot must always be ready to react as their aircraft could be sent into an usual attitude at any time. This was demonstrated recently when on 7 January 2017 a Challenger 604 passed underneath an A380 flying in the opposite direction while over the Arabian Sea . Even though 1,000ft separation was maintained, the Challenger experienced the effects of wake turbulence and was sent into an uncontrolled roll. Before the crew could recover, the Challenger had rolled at least three times, flamed out both engines and lost 10,000ft. While the aircraft was able to land safely it was damaged beyond repair. A difference of a few hundred feet during an aircraft emergency recovery could result in very different outcomes for most GA/RA-Aus pilots. So I decided to refine my skills with an EMT session. My expectations In the lead up to the flight I was feeling a combination of excitement and nervousness. Excited because the

thought of rolling upside-down in an aircraft seemed like one of the most thrilling things you could do. Yet at the same time I felt nervous given I was going to attempt this flight in an aircraft I had never flown before, the Robin 2160i. It was reassuring when Peter explained that being unfamiliar with the aircraft type for training was not going to be an issue. During the lesson the focus would be on learning techniques which would be transferrable to other aircraft types. Interestingly for those who are experimental aircraft owners, there is the option to complete the training in their own aircraft. It was also clearly evident that safety was going to be the top priority. My first two attempts to complete the EMT session were cancelled due to unfavourable weather. Finally the skies over Bankstown cleared for the flight. EMT Theory To make sure we made the most of the air time, the EMT session began on the ground. No specific preparation was required before the day and a handout was provided just in case you forgot something after all the loop-the-looping in the air. Pete explained new techniques to improve skills I had already learnt such as controlling the aircraft’s flight path and maintaining an effective scan. Then we

Emergency Manoeuver Training – Why you need to do it!

Training – Pics: How quickly a stall spin develops

discussed taking the aircraft to the edge of its performance capability by managing the power before moving into new skills that I had never attempted before, such as aileron rolls. Flight – Putting the theory into practice On our way to the aircraft Peter told me that at some point during the flight I would succumb to the errors of human reaction. It was no judgement of my pilot training, just a statement of fact that those who have never had the chance to implement the theory in flight will find it challenging not to do what comes naturally. As we took off on Runway 29 for the flight I was quietly confident that I knew what I was doing. I had understood the theory and was ready to recover from whatever unusual attitude was thrown my way. Yet during the lesson as Peter suddenly positioned the aircraft into a nose-low inverted attitude and as I recovered, I saw a smile come across his face that said ‘I told you so’. I had been able to recover the aircraft back to straight and level but in doing so had lost approximately 800ft by not levelling the wings first and instead trying to pull immediately out of the attitude. That moment was a real eye-opener and a key example on the importance of Emergency Manoeuver Training. While I was sure that I had understood the theory I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



it was surprising how quickly your senses could take over the situation, but in the wrong way. The positive approach that Peter took to the training was really helpful in enhancing the learning experience. Even though an ‘I told you so’ was definitely warranted instead he decided to go with a “lets have another go at that one” while talking through what improvements I could make to reduce the altitude loss. My second unusual attitude recovery was much better with a significantly reduced altitude loss. One of the tips that Peter explained to achieve a quick and accurate straight and level attitude was to mark a point on the windscreen where the horizon would provide this flightpath. During my flying I have had an understanding on approximately where on the windscreen the horizon should be for straight and level, but having a clear point really did make a difference for quick decision making when rolling over and noticing even slight deviations from the intended flightpath. During the rest of the lesson we explored



the edge of the aircraft’s performance limitations with powered descents and full aileron deflection. For each aspect of the flight Peter provided various tips and tricks for precise flight and rapid decision making. Overall my favourite part of the flight was definitely the aileron rolls! While I hope this never happens to me when I’m flying the Cessna it is definitely good fun in the Robin. Feelings after the flight. I was relieved that at no point during the flight I felt sick. I consider that this is related to the hands on approach of the lesson. During the whole flight I was either manoeuvring the controls myself or following through on the controls with the instructor. EMT Course People generally relate the number of hours a pilot has accumulated as a judgement of their skill. However, after completing only the first lesson of the EMT course I can honestly say that I learned more in a single hour of dual than I would have flying several hours solo.

The complete EMT course offered by the Australian Aerobatic Academy consists of five lessons. These lessons further stretch your skills and push you outside of your comfort zone in areas including advanced stalling, side slipping, engine failures and spinning. Conclusion I found that the opportunity to implement the EMT theory in a controlled flight environment was very valuable and I would recommend this training, or similar, to all pilots, particularly given that incident records clearly demonstrate that this area is one that should be targeted as an area for improvement. Don’t wait until an unexpected event occurs during a flight to discover that some additional training could make the difference between a safe outcome and a tragic one. Learning how to save a few extra feet recovering from an unforeseen attitude excursion may actually save your life one day. You never know, you may even enjoy it so much that you continue onto further training for an aerobatic endorsement. n


Ron Dickinson – Age is No Barrier Mark Smith meets a pilot still flying after learning in 1944. Ron Dickinson has had a ringside seat to the development of private flying for 73 years, and at 91 has no intention of relinquishing the left hand seat of his V-tail Bonanza. “It won’t be my idea to give up flying. Someone’s going to have to tell me,” he said with a cheeky smile. “I pass my medical so why would I give up?” For Ron’s longtime flying record he was presented with an AOPA Lifetime Achievement Award, recognising his contribution to general aviation over such an extended period of time. AOPA executive director Ben Morgan presented him with the award at the Australian Beechcraft Society pilot proficiency event at Narromine and said it was important to honour people who have supported GA over a long period of time. “I’m proud to be able to acknowledge Ron’s long term membership of AOPA as well as his example as a pilot who has been dedicated to flying for so many years,” Ben said. The sleek Bonanza Ron has owned for 12 years is a lot different from the training aircraft he flew as a young air force trainee during the final stages of WWII. “I learned in Tiger Moths, like everyone did. They were a modern training aeroplane at the time.” With the war over Ron left the air force, but not flying, and in 1946 earned his private pilot’s licence at Essendon Airport, then Melbourne’s only major civilian landing ground. “Roy Boon, who commanded a Boomerang squadron in the islands during the war, gave me my PPL after a 30 minute checkout. He was a fantastic pilot and a great bloke.” Private aviation was growing with the large number of former air force pilots and training aircraft moving into civil aviation. One aspect of flying at that time was the amount of freedom pilots enjoyed. “We just flew. No one said where you should fly or where you shouldn’t. No regulations, or maybe there were but they weren’t bad or difficult. “We used to go down to Berwick and

Ron Dickinson

land at Casey Field, Lord Casey’s property. We were supposed to get permission but there were no buildings so we just landed there. We also used to land on a strip at Little River. In those days there were so few regulations. I used to take off from Essendon, fly out to Kew where I lived, do aerobatics and my mum would wave a towel at me. I used to fly across Port Phillip Bay with a friend to the orthopedic hospital at Mt Eliza where the children were and we’d put on aerobatics over the water for the children.” The opening of Moorabbin Airport was important in Melbourne’s growing aviation industry, and Ron was there from day one. “I was one of the first people to fly into Moorabbin after they cleared the potatoes and cabbages out of the paddock. That was in a Tiger Moth.” Ron sees the biggest change to the GA landscape, apart from the advancement of the aircraft, as the growth in the rules

that govern flying. “The big difference now is the regulations. They are the things that have changed. But maybe they need to be. I think some people don’t have the same discipline to that we learned in the air force. “I have a grandson who is a navy pilot and he’s on PC9s at Pearce. After that he’ll go on to fly helicopters and he was telling me the initial training he did at Tamworth was along the same lines as we had in the air force in 1944. It still works. I think civil aviation would benefit from that.” Ron’s affection for his Bonanza is obvious, and it’s shared by his wife Aylsa. “We love our Bonanza. We’ve owned it since 1991 and we’ve flown everywhere around Australia. I’ve done about 900 hours in it. Aylsa has been my navigator all the way. She loves it too. We had an A36 Bonanza for about 12 years, but we sold that after our family grew up.” Ron’s advice to anyone thinking of learning to fly is simple. “Do it if you possibly can. I know it’s expensive but it was relatively expensive in my day. When we were flying Tiger Moths out of Essendon we paid two pounds an hour and the basic wage was six pounds a week, so it was a third of your weekly pay, so it’s possibly not as expensive now.” n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Aero 2017 – Aviation’s Future On Show Europe leads the world in innovative aircraft design. Rob Akron sampled what’s on offer Germany’s Aero Expo bills itself as the largest GA expo in Europe. As of the last few years it also claims to be the most influential GA event globally. Uniquely the event is not staged around an airshow, but as an expo where manufacturers reveal their new developments. This year about 33,000 visitors explored the offerings from 600 exhibitors. Because Europe is a hub for GA manufacturers, many technological developments and new aircraft unveilings occur here. On average, new aircraft released here hit the Australian market two to five years later, giving Aussie aviators a heads up on what’s to come. A special airshow marked the fact this was the 25th official Aero Expo, with



historical aircraft from Focke and Junkers flying displays along with a modern fleet. An electric aircraft flyby capped off the show, with Walter Kampsmann flying the first ever all-electric aerobatic display in the brand new Extra 330LE. This display was certainly something to experience — a full 10 minutes with seemingly relatively little held back in terms of performance of the machine compared to traditional displays. Noteworthy was the noise: it was surprisingly loud. In their initial electric aircraft formation flypast the machines were almost completely silent but the aerobatic display had the pilot pushing in max propeller RPM, which in the Extra 330 series is about 2700rpm with a 36 inch prop, so the propeller tips pushed the Mach barrier.

What the audience hears is the propeller noise minus the engine, and the rushing of air past the airframe. Extra Aircraft says this aircraft is purely a test-bed for the Siemens electric motor and there are no plans for a production electric aircraft. Event director Roland Bosch saw the electric aerobatic display as a bit of a vindication. ‘’Six years ago we introduced electric aircraft to this event. People thought it was a joke, but now we have shown that we truly are on the forefront of what is happening in industry.’’ He said the future of the GA industry, and for the Aero event, lay in the growth of the drone sector, electric propulsion and developments in the light personal

Aero 2017 – Aviation’s Future On Show

“Six years ago we introduced electric aircraft to this event. People thought it was a joke, but now we have shown that we truly are on the forefront of what is happening in industry.”

The Hamilton aEro Twister Electric Aircraft offers 45 minutes flight time.

helicopter market. Blackshape recently completed certification of their new BK160 and unveiled it at Aero. The BK160 has evolved from the lessons learned on the BS100 UL/VLA, but uses an entirely new wing to make the most of the 160hp Lycoming IO-320. The factory was aware that buyers, including defence forces, had been looking for something which would allow operation outside the limitations of UL category aircraft. The BK160 targets this market segment with an aircraft capable of GA registration and fully aerobatic certified. Minor aerodynamic improvements learned from the BS100 were incorporated: fences along the wing are no longer necessary, and a vibration dampening endplate on the rudder has

Pavillion one with the electric Extra 330LE

Blackshape Bk160 Gabriel. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Zlin Shock Cub.

also disappeared. A more aggressive looking intake feeds and cools the new GA engine, with proper power absorption assured by a three-blade prop. Some of the more eye-raising announcements came from Diamond Aircraft. The manufacturer debuted the DA-50 and the Diamond Dart 450 at the event, signed major flight school contracts, and announced the design of their first helicopter. The DA-50 is a single-engined aircraft based on the fuselage of the twin-engined DA-62. With four seats instead of the DA-62’s seven, it’s powered by a SMA/Austro turbocharged SR305-260E. It’s a 260hp Jet A-powered piston engine. The target market is the upper end of the single engine trainer spectrum and pilot owner-operators. A noteworthy difference from its DA-62 big brother is the robust fixed landing gear holding



the aircraft very high off the ground. This in combination with slotted fowler flaps make it clear that the aircraft is intended as a relatively luxurious and roomy piston single allowing for operations out of short unprepared runways. Canada, Africa and Australia are considered to be primary target markets. A variation under consideration, depending on demand, may include a more powerful engine, retractable landing gear and six seats. The Diamond Dart 450 is clearly intended as a direct challenge to the Pilatus PC-7 and PC-9 in the airforce trainer market, but surprisingly the company says it will also certify the aircraft for the civilian register. With options for 550 and 700shp GE powerplants or an 450shp engine from a Ukrainian manufacturer, the aircraft offers a lower cost alternative to Pilatus

aircraft with the ability to market to alternative customers requiring no American components. At a base price of around (AUD4.4M), you can belt around in one too, excluding munitions pylons but including Martin Baker bang seats! Australia and New Zealand appear to be target markets for the civilian version because of strong interest in warbirds. The Shock Cub won the event’s innovation award in the ultralight segment. It’s an interesting variation of the Cub UL series built in Italy. Balloon tyres, slats and slotted flaps make it ideal for rough terrain short unprepared runways. V-stall is an impressive 29 km/h (not knots!) and several versions of these aircraft could be interesting to the Australian market. Several light helicopter manufacturers debuted co-axial designs at the expo. Because all power is directed towards

Aero 2017 – Aviation’s Future On Show

lift in such rotor arrangements, they have a theoretically higher lifting capacity than conventional helicopters despite aerodynamic interference between the rotors. Rotorschmiede announced first flight for their single seat VA115. The designer hopes to market the aircraft in Australia for cattle-mustering operations against the R22. EDM Aerotec debuted their CoAx 2D light helicopter, winning the reader’s choice award for innovation from one of the largest European aviation magazines. EDM hopes to sell their aircraft as a trainer and as a private helicopter. In the electric aircraft section e-Volo showed off their newly constructed Volocopter V2 boasting a more aerodynamic airframe and improved flight performance. E-Volo hopes to market the aircraft in Australia as an autonomous unmanned crop-spraying alternative, and as an air-taxi in select operations. Several other designers offered competition in the electric vertical lift sector with conventional arrangement electric helicopters (Volta), multi-copter arrangements, plus Lilium with a distributed boundary layer propulsion concept tilt-wing design. Pipistrel announced the sale of several electric versions of their aircraft to Elon Musk’s SpaceX. Since all astronauts are required to have some level of flight training, SpaceX intends to conduct this internally using these aircraft. Further electric aircraft were sold to flying schools around Europe. Siemens announced a partnership with Airbus to produce hybrid electric passenger aircraft by 2030. Although battery densities currently do not allow for all-electric passenger transport aircraft, a hybrid electric aircraft would use electric engines fed by boundary layer air ingestion. The power source would use relatively small battery banks to dampen power surges to the motors, with the primary energy source being a diesel-electric generator converting kerosene into electrical energy for the battery. Even in this seemingly complex energy-to-thrust conversion cycle, the whole is still more efficient than a direct coupling of a combustion engine to a turbine or propeller. n

Interior out

Rotorschmiede VA115




More Than Just a Fan Out Front

A collection of blades waits for overhaul.

Mark Smith looks at possibly the most misunderstood part of the aeroplane. There is a joke in aviation that says the propeller on an aeroplane has the sole job of keeping the pilot cool, with the proof being how much the pilot sweats when it stops turning. In a limited way that may be true, but in reality the big spinning thing on the end of the engine is a complex part of the aeroplane, even when it’s a supposedly simple fixed pitch unit. John Marks has been involved in propellers for most of his aviation career and can guide pilots about just what to look for as they do their daily inspection. His business, East Coast Propellers, at Bankstown Airport has approvals for all the major propeller manufacturers. “When performing a daily, the first thing a pilot should do with a fixed pitch propeller is look at the leading edge for nicks and gouges or any abnormality,” he says. “Then look straight down the leading edge because quite often you’ll be able to pick up if there is a bend or any warping of the propeller. Fixed pitch propellers



tend to get what we call thrust bends in that they do bow forwards, which can lead to them being out of track. That can lead to vibration.” Corrosion can be a big factor in the airworthiness of a propeller and so he says it’s important to look for its calling card. “Corrosion is one of the biggest issues for propellers and the most detrimental things we see are related to it. You can see it rearing its ugly head on the back of a prop as a bubbling on the matt black paint and you can simply pick it off to reveal a white powdery substance. When you can see that the prop should be sent to a prop shop immediately. At the very least get your LAME to have a good look at it. “The spinner hides a lot of things and we rely on LAMEs to inspect things like bolt tension and the serviceability of lock wire. If a propeller doesn’t have a spinner it’s important for the pilot to have a good look at the hub, making sure the bolts aren’t corroded and the

lock wire is in good condition. “We’ve seen props being held on by rusty bolts and it’s not a good look.” John says the state of serviceability of a fixed pitch prop can have a big impact on an aircraft’s performance, with many props losing their efficiency from years of seemingly small amounts of filing of defects. “We get calls from owners with fixed pitch props who say the aeroplane isn’t performing as well as it should. We check it and find the pitch is wrong and/or the blades are undersized. We’ll get a prop in here that, after overhaul, is within the permitted figures by 20 or 30 thousandths of an inch so it’s just serviceable. One stroke of a file during an annual and it becomes undersize, yet in theory that prop can go for another 10 years or 2000 hours or so. Imagine after a number of years of redressing during annuals just how undersize the prop becomes.” John says the basic daily inspection points from the fixed pitch also apply to constant speed props as well, though

Propellers - More Than Just a Fan Out Front

Photos: Mark Smith

Engineer Rob Del Carman starts an overhaul.

there are more things to look for on the constant speed propeller. “Apart from the things we covered with a fixed pitch, it’s a good idea to grab the tip of the blade and gently rock it backwards and forwards and make sure the blade isn’t loose in the hub and there isn’t any rotational movement,” he says. “Look in the spinner fillet areas to make sure there aren’t excessive grease or oil leaks. A lot of the McCauley props are filled with red dye oil as a means of crack detection. While this may be a good idea and make seeing a defect easy, when there is a leak, the red dye seems to just go everywhere and some people can mistakenly take a red dye leak as a sign of cracking where in fact it is a seal failure. “The older style threaded series propellers were never designed to be oil filled and as such, sealing of these hubs can be challenging. A Hartzell propeller should be serviced every 100 hours but we constantly see examples of hubs being over serviced. You need only pump approximately 30ml of grease which is equivalent to about five or six pumps of a conventional grease gun. Always refer to the Hartzell owner’s manual for

Possibly a writeoff?

lubrication procedure. On some propellers the interval for greasing is not more than 400 hours. It is not imperative that the grease comes out the other fitting. The book states whichever occurs first. People just keep pouring the grease in till it is evident from the opposite fitting. More than likely the whole hub cavity is now full of grease and the propeller could

operate sluggishly and lead to vibration and subsequent seal degradation.” Balancing of propellers is also a subject that can create animated discussion among pilots and owners but John takes a very conservative line about static vs dynamic balancing. “We use the very sensitive Marvel Suspension balancing equipment and I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Propellers - More Than Just a Fan Out Front

John Marks in the NDT area.

while our static balance is excellent I am an advocate of dynamic balancing. “I say to all of my customers that if they have the opportunity to get dynamic balancing done, then do it. You can have a prop that is statically balanced and you can still have an out of balance engine. You balance the prop/engine combination, take that imbalance out, and it’ll be running very smoothly,” he says “Everyone blames the prop because it’s the big thing spinning at the front but in a lot of cases vibrations are caused by an out of balance engine.” A propeller overhaul is much like a zero-time engine rebuild. The whole unit is pulled apart, right down to the last bolt, before the real work begins. “After pull-down everything is totally cleaned. We keep all the parts that will be replaced in a bag so that at the end we can hand it to the customer. The various propeller manufacturers have their own way to supply parts. Hartzell have one part number for a complete kit of all the replacement parts for a particular model of prop. With McCauley you have to order each part number, although we do have our own kits made up on the computer as per the manual. “Then every part is inspected as per the manual. Each item is visually inspected



and if there is a dimension to be followed, then it is measured. If the part is subjected to non-destructive testing (NDT) it’s then taken to the relevant area for inspection, be it magnetic particle inspection, fluorescent penetrant inspection or eddy current inspection. The blades are then taken to our blade dimension table and we do a complete measurement of the blade. We check for width, thickness, edge alignment, face alignment and blade angle. Any twist or straightening of the blade is performed at this stage. The blade is then scurfed down in the grinding room and if it’s a marginal blade where we’ve measured it and it’s very close to tolerances we measure it again and if it’s gone under, we scrap it. “The blades are subject to dye penetrant inspection and then treated with a chromate conversion product called Iridite, commonly referred to as Alodine, for corrosion protection and the blades are then painted using special polane paint as per the manufacturer’s specifications. The blades are master balanced and the whole thing is put back together.” John has some sympathy for private owners who may find they don’t fly enough hours to attain the prop’s time between

overhauls and so are forced to perform an overhaul based on calendar time. Those people flying with a Hartzell propeller have to overhaul their propeller at 10 years IAW AD/PROP/1, but if you have a McCauley you can leave it on until the TBO hours are reached. The AD is so confusing John is always having customers, LAMEs and maintenance facilities ring him to get some understanding of when their propeller is due for overhaul. “CASA attempted to rewrite the AD about 12 to 18 months ago and put out PAD for discussion. Unfortunately the PAD was cancelled and we are back where we were before,” he says. “I feel a bit sorry for the customer sometimes because we have to tear the propeller totally to pieces and in cases where the propeller is de-iced, remove about $1000 worth of perfectly good deicing boots so we can inspect the blades. However in a lot of instances, it is these very low hour propellers that we find riddled with corrosion that could lead to a catastrophic failure. “The best one I have seen was a prop that came in for its 10 year inspection and it had only done 30 hours in that time.” n

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Fully revised Visual Flight Rules Guide Limited print run—don’t miss out!


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Aeropro EuroFOX – A STOL with Style Mark Smith flies a European LSA that matches quality with impeccable flying manners. Years ago at Avalon Airshow a fledgling company was selling a tricycle version of the Denny Skyfox. The engine was the ‘new’ Rotax 912 and it was promoted as a GA trainer. Its name? The Skyfox Gazelle. History records the promise failed to live up to the sales pitch and the company disappeared as so many aircraft manufacturers have. Roll the clock forward 18 years and walking into Horsham Aviation Service’s hangar to review the Aeropro EuroFOX, from a distance you’d think the Gazelle has been reborn because it is roughly the same size and shape, it has rag and tube construction with a high set tailplane and a strut-based wing. It’s only when you get closer you



realise this is an all new airframe, with the mistakes made in the design and construction of aircraft like the Gazelle and the Denny Kitfox consigned to history. The EuroFOX is available as a nosewheel aircraft called the 3K, and a taildragger known as 2K. Composites are used extensively on the aircraft. The flat bottomed wing has a composite fibreglass leading edge and can be folded back for slipping neatly into the smallest hangar spot. The flaperons are also made from composites as well as the main gear. The nose gear is a forward inclined cantilever design with a rubber disc for suspension and cables to operate the steering. One item not made of composites are the aluminium fuel tanks. Some of the

additives found in automotive-based fuels can have a detrimental effect on composite materials so Aeropro have opted for traditional materials. The aircraft is covered with Stits Poly-Fiber and is painted in white twopack paint giving a superb finish, with individual detail stripes up to the owner’s taste. Other colours are available. The wing uses aluminium ribs with tubular aluminium front and rear spars. The fuselage is chrome moly tube, tig welded, oil filled and then painted with polyurethane. Power comes from the Rotax 912 ULS, though a standard 80hp Rotax is also an option, driving a three bladed Fiti composite propeller. Speed is claimed to be 100ktas.

Aeropro EuroFOX – A STOL with Style

Photos: Mark Smith

The roomy interior

Where do you start?

EuroFOX cockpit

To use a cliché, the EuroFOX simply blasted off and was airborne in around 100m.

The test aircraft has an empty weight of 300kg and max take-off weight of 560kg. The baggage area behind the seats can hold 20kg, though with some structure present getting a larger bag in and out would require a touch of deft handling. Horsham Aviation Services owner Tony Brand bought the rights to market the

design in 2006 and so far has sold more than 30 into the Australian market, with two more on order. “It’s been a mixed bag of buyers,” he says in his large maintenance hangar at Horsham airfield, 300km northwest of Melbourne. “Three or four flying schools operate them including a school in Queensland that operates three and he’s quietly growing. There’s an operator at Tocumwal, Eddie Madden, who has a nose wheel version and the tail wheel version and he’s been using them as glider tugs in his full time gliding business since 2008. “The glider tow variant is pretty much on a par with a 180hp Maule or a Bellanca scout type of aircraft. It’s not as good in the climb as a Pawnee but the turnaround

times are the same as the EuroFOX. With its liquid cooled engine it can descend quite briskly. Plus as a glider tug you couldn’t get a cheaper one to operate and maintain as I think it would work out to a quarter or a fifth of the costs associated with operating a more common GA-based glider tug.” Like many smaller high wing aircraft with strut-braced wings, the concept of simply opening the door and climbing in, motor car style, is not going to happen. The doors open upwards and are held in place with gas struts. They can be opened in flight below 80kts making it a potentially good photographic platform. The technique for getting on board is similar to climbing into a small high wing taildragger, but without the deck angle to I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



The EuroFOX

complicate things. From the front of the wing strut, your backside is eased over the side frame onto the very comfortable seat. At this stage your legs are still outside so it’s time to lift your right leg over or around the control stick and then swing your left leg in. Once seated on the throne of control everything comes nicely to hand and to your feet. Pilots who view the world from a slightly taller angle will still fit with their legs slightly bent, though all tall pilots must get used to this anyway. Those of a smaller stature can avail themselves of seat cushion extensions that Velcro in and allow hands and feet to meet the controls. The stick is connected to the control surfaces with pushrods which give a very direct feel. The rudder is cable operated. The cabin is roomy, thanks to the design feature used on many LSA aircraft of having the Perspex doors bowed out to make the cockpit bigger than it would be if the doors were solid aluminium like a Cessna 150. With Tony in the right seat it was comfortable without the shoulder rubbing found in many legacy airframes with solid doors. The flap handle and trim are between the seats with the flap handle slightly



forwards. Both are easy to reach. The flaps have no preset positions and the lever has a spherical knob on top so the pilot doesn’t get confused with the trim with has a cylindrical knob. Flap setting is by feel and is held in place by friction. Horsham Aviation Services offer a choice of avionics packages, with most people selecting one of the modern glass options from Dynon that are so prevalent in new RAA aircraft. With the Rotax running it was time to amble down to the runway to see what the Eurofox had to offer. The nose wheel version is available with optional toe brakes but they were absent on the test aircraft. The brakes on 24-8675 are operated with just a single red handle next to the throttle so all steering is via the nosewheel. With the engine at idle on a paved apron there was no problem keeping the speed down to walking pace with only the occasional need for a touch of brake. The aircraft has a vernier throttle so fine power adjustments while taxiing were easy, but I would still have preferred a normal push-pull power control. The technique of releasing the winding mechanism is to hold the throttle ring with your fingers and depress the

middle button with your thumb. This takes some practice . Once lined up Tony recommended dropping the flaperons and then winding on the power to around half before pushing it in all the way. There was no wind and the acceleration was rapid to say the least. To use a cliché, the Eurofox simply blasted off and was airborne in around 100m. Trimming for about 60kts saw a climb rate around 800fpm, with right rudder needed to keep the ball centred. Control forces were light but not overly sensitive with rudder needed to co-ordinate turns as we climbed. Levelling at 3000ft, 4800rpm produced an indicated airspeed around 94kts, so the figure of 100ktas was accurate. Fuel burn was 16lph. Steep turns left and right were no issue provided just a touch of rudder was used as the turn was initiated. Once we were straight and level after the fun of spinning around various spots in the paddocks around the airfield it was time to sample the stall, first with the flaps up. Power back and speed dropped away rapidly as the stick was gradually eased back. I always like to feel where my arm ends up at the stall break because that becomes my angle of attack

Aeropro EuroFOX – A STOL with StyleMinds

The EuroFOX takes a scenic flight over the Grampians

indicator for further flying and setting up for landing. Nearing 40kts she started to nod her head a touch as if to warn me I was approaching the limits of flight and at about 35kts the nose dropped with a very slight wobble of the wing to the right, needing only a touch of rudder to keep it tidy. Back pressure relaxed and you could feel the wing start to fly again. Power on and she flew on with the speed coming back up rapidly. Another go revealed no wing drop meaning I think I may have had a touch of rudder in at the stall without noticing it. Full flap next and with the power back at idle she seemed to simply mush along at 35kts with the nose level, descending at 400fpm. Relaxing the back pressure and she started flying away again with a touch of power. Bringing the speed back up to 50kts with the flaps down and the aircraft was able to loiter quite happily with moderate turns feeling safe and stable. With such predictable manners I knew the approach and landing would be easy. Downwind was at 100kts, slowing to 80kts as we turned base and deployed half flap and then full flap once on finals and aiming for 55kts

over the fence. The trim came easily to hand in the speed transitions and it wasn’t much of a challenge to flare, touch down and stop in around 200m. I’m sure this could be a touch shorter with practice a bit of a headwind. So what’s the conclusion? Light Sport Aircraft have come a long way, though it’s worth noting this is a 10-year-old design. Traditional rag and tube construction produced light but strong aeroplanes in the 1930s and it does now, with the main difference being the metal finishes used in manufacture today will stand up to the effects of corrosion far better than the older legacy aeroplanes. Add modern covering materials painted with modern paints and I imagine we’ll be seeing EuroFoxes buzzing around the skies in another 50 years, as we do Piper Colts now. It flies as a modern aeroplane with a lot of design work behind it should – predictable, civilised but with enough control response to have a touch of fun throwing it around a bit. Its standard of finish is superb and any owner would be proud to wheel it out of the hangar, unfold the wings, and blast off on a nice day. n

FACTS Aeropro, the manufacturer of the EuroFOX, was formed in the late 1980s following the division of the Czech Republic and Slovakia. With no more influence from the Soviet Union, four university graduates were able to turn their passion for aero modeling into full size aircraft design and production. Aeropro only produce the EuroFOX as a factory-built LSA and a kit set for home building. The current workforce is 25 with many having worked for the company for more than 10 years. A number also have a background in model aircraft building which leads to the quest for the socalled perfect finish on every aircraft produced. There are currently more than 500 EuroFoxes flying worldwide. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Woman Of Aviation Soars Again

Nina Kingsford Smith

Sheree Mcnab

Bathurst and Port Pirie were two aero clubs among many to host Woman with Wings events. Aero clubs across Australia introduced more women to aviation during the annual Women with Wings events. Among the signature events of Women of Aviation International are the Woman with Wings days, held at aero clubs around the world, which encourage women to take to the skies and experience flying, many for the first time. Three of the many aero clubs to participate in Australia were Bathurst and Orange aero clubs in NSW and Port Pirie Flying Group in South Australia. Together they flew more than 265 women. At Bathurst, the aero club used local and social media to promote their event and, with a flood of inquiries, they knew



they were in for a successful day’s flying. Local instructor David Carroll has organised the day for the past three years and was thrilled at the reaction he received from the many participants he flew. At 10, Grace Sheehan was one of the youngest to take flight, demonstrating even the youngest of potential pilots can benefit from taking to the air. “Thank you for taking me up in the plane. It was very awesome! I liked the thermal bumps and I liked the view. I never thought I would fly a plane, but it was the best feeling ever. I hope I get to do it again! You were a hilarious teacher,” she said after her flight. Sheree Mcnab also experienced GA flying for the first time. She came because her sister had flown the year

before and told her about it. “I never knew I’d be able to get in a cockpit, help with the takeoff and fly with such a talented instructor. Plus the view from up above the ground was so great, very unexpected.” Bathurst was also host to aviation royalty, when Nina Kingsford-Smith came up from Sydney to have her first fly in a small aeroplane. The great grand-niece of legendary aviator Sir Charles got straight on to the controls with instructor Matt Norgrove and flew the Bristell as if it was her 10th lesson. Port Pirie Flying Group held their first event, at the instigation of member Roger Crouch. Despite some concerns about the lack of time before the big day, the flying group decided to go for

Woman Of Aviation Soars Again

it and after a campaign involving talks at schools and interviews on local radio they received more than 100 inquiries which led to a busy day at the airfield. Flights started on a cool day with gusty winds but that didn’t stop local pilots using the flying group’s two Cessnas and four private planes to take the excited passengers aloft. Partners of the flying group’s members provided a free lunch in the club’s hangar, and all enjoyed a series of talks by three female pilots about their aviation careers. Doctor Angela Kohler spoke of her time learning to fly in Germany before migrating to Australia and converting her licence, followed by Katrina Humble who works as an outback pilot for Wrightsair in William Creek, and finally Sarah Stevens talked about the many hats she wears at Hawkers as a pilot and also working in an auto workshop. With the weather deteriorating, flying continued into the afternoon with a grand total of 96 girls of all ages being taken aloft. Port Pirie Flying Group president Duane Burge said many of the attendees were eager to keep flying despite the incoming inclement weather. “We only received positive remarks following the rides with many eager for more despite the trying conditions. We hope we have inspired many to continue,” he said. “After what seemed like a mammoth task, the event turned out to be an outstanding success, which wouldn’t have happened at all if it wasn’t for the big effort put in by Roger and Marg Crouch.” He also thanked the rest of the members who assisted before and on the day. And in a huge highlight for the movement in Australia, Temora Flyers organiser Emma Bowley won an international award for the event held in

Grace Sheehan

Marg and Roger Crouch, Katrina Humble, Sarah Stevens and Dr. Angela Kohler at Port Pirie

the central NSW town. Emma was awarded Women of Aviation Week’s 2017 Most Acclaimed Organiser Worldwide (activity including Fly it Forwards flights) - an award for the organiser of an activity hosting more than 50 who received the highest average review rating as reported by guests and volunteers. About 60 women flew with Temora pilots on March 11 and she will travel to Vancouver to accept the award later this year.

Women of Aviation International is dedicated to encouraging and advancing women in to all aviation career fields and interests. Astronauts, corporate pilots, maintenance technicians, air traffic controllers, business owners, educators, journalists, flight attendants, high school and university students, air show performers, airport managers and many others are counted among the members of this global organisation. n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Freedom to Fly,

The AOPA Way Paul Goard is taking a new aerobatics team to the world. Mark Smith attended one of their training camps. Three men walk on the ground close together, one at the front and the other two on either side, slightly behind the leader. They walk forwards in step then make a right turn, maintaining the same relative positions, with the leader moving his hands up and down as the others follow his every move. The performance goes on for nearly four minutes before they suddenly break apart, the leader spinning in one place while the other two move apart. To the uninitiated this would seem to be strange dance, possibly part of an arcane ritual

Photos: Mark Smith



understood by a select few. And they’d be right because the walk-through of a formation aerobatics routine is a dance on the ground, meant to match the precision moves in the air and only those who follow the ways of aerobatic pilots would understand just what was going on. Team manager Paul Goard is very familiar with aerobatics performances, and has brought together a troupe of skilled aviators to create the AOPA Freedom to Fly team, with the goal to help promote general aviation, one airshow at a time.

Freedom to Fly – The AOPA Way

The team training near Cowra. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



From left. Ivan Krippner, Paul Goard,Mike Jones, Adrian ‘AJ’ Van Der Sluys and Nigel Arnot.

“We’d been doing a lot of flying with other organisations around the country and it was just time to go out and do our own thing with our own brand,” he says as the team take off on another training flight. “This is a different team because it’s not about Paul Goard, or my company, or anything else. It’s all about the pilots and the crew being one team. There is no focus on any one person. No one’s really done that before and that’s what I want to create.” Paul doesn’t just have a local focus with the team. After working hard with his father to establish a manufacturing facility in China for their successful Brumby line of light sport aircraft, the connections he’s made with the Chinese government have put him in a key position to take the Freedom to Fly team to the many large airshows that are becoming popular in China. “I think the communist system over there is slowly dwindling away. I don’t think it will ever disappear entirely but the country and economy is certainly opening up. I get the feeling they want to be like us in the west,” he says. “When it does open up it’s going to be



huge for general aviation. Already planes are turning up to their airshows – we see Cirrus, Trinidads and Augusta helicopters all performing. Even gyros and ultralights are displaying and of course the Brumby. The shows just keep getting bigger and bigger. Our largest show last year had around 300,000 spectators. “The thing with China is they are very big on formation aerobatics, not solo. They just love smooth, tight, formation flying.” The growing relationship with Chinese interests has further benefits for AOPA in Australia, with Paul working to forge strong links between AOPA in China and Australia as that country’s fledgling GA and recreational aviation sector expands. Flying as lead aircraft is highly regarded airshow legend Nigel Arnot who has been reunited with the Sukoi SU 26, an aircraft he campaigned on the airshow circuit for many years before taking a break from performing in 2005. He says it’s great to be back in such a familiar aircraft. “Flying one again was just like pulling on an old faithful pair of shoes. I just felt at home straight away. It just felt right,” he says. “I’m super lucky. It’s just great to be able to get this opportunity without having

to buy it myself, to fly it and even be given the fuel. How great is that!” As formation leader Nigel is responsible for the pilots flying off him, but he likes to downplay his role in the team. “It’s really quite good for me because it’s easy. It’s just a matter of setting half throttle and cruising around the sky. There are a couple of boys off my wing tips and it works out well,” he says with a smile. All joking aside, he explains what’s involved in being number one. “As the leader you are responsible for the people hanging off your wings. They only have eyes for your aircraft. You have to make sure what you are getting them to do is correct and there is nothing to fly into where you are taking them. Plus when you are displaying you have to think of the display area and keeping the formation in front of the crowd. Thankfully after doing this type of flying for many years it’s second nature for me. “Right now we are a very new team so we are starting very simply; we are not making it overly complicated.” The SU-26 Nigel is flying is far more powerful than the Pitts Specials and an RV-7 that form the other part of the team,

Freedom to Fly – The AOPA Way

The team display as a four ship

We’d been doing a lot of flying with other organisations around the country and it was just time to go out and do our own thing with our own brand.

something that goes against normal formation aerobatic practice. “Normally in formation aerobatics the slowest aircraft is in the lead but we aren’t doing that. The Sukhoi has a 400hp supercharged engine so I could leave these guys as if they were standing still. So I’m flying at about 28inches manifold pressure which is just above idle at 2100rpm, but it works out well. It took a while to work out just how to make it all work together. Believe it or not the Sukhoi will go slower than a Pitts. It’ll just hang there. “The hardest thing I’ve found is that you can really throw the Sukhoi around. You only have to look at how big that stick is in the cockpit. You really only have to breathe on it to get a response from the

SU 26 Cockpit aircraft, so I really have to concentrate on keeping everything smooth. If I bobble, they bobble, and it all gets out of whack.” Flying in the number two position is Adrian ‘AJ’ Van Der Sluys in the Pitts S1 he has owned for four years. Unlike many who aspire to aerobatic flying, AJ’s entry into the sport happened by accident. “I started flying about 10 years ago. I’m not sure why I got into it other than it was always something I thought I’d like to have

a go at. Then when you start it’s one of those thing you do get addicted to,” he says. “But I never had intentions of getting involved with aerobatics until I took a ride with a friend who had a Stearman biplane. That started me on aerobatics and I got addicted to that as well. Within a year I’d bought my Pitts after doing some training with Phil Unicomb and falling in love with the design.” I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



AJ and Mike hang out togther.

AJ has been competing in aerobatic competition for four years and is thrilled to have been invited to join the team. “I feel really lucky as it’s special to be working with such an experienced group of pilots. It’s hard work but we are getting the rewards.” Those rewards will include flying in airshows on mainland China, something that will be a totally new experience for AJ. “It’ll be an experience to be performing in front of so many people in China but I suppose you just have to lap it up and enjoy it. It’s certainly a once in a lifetime experience, that’s for sure,” he says. “But even then, once that engine starts we might as well be flying over a paddock performing for the cows. That’s when all that matters is doing the job safely no matter how many are watching. When I’m flying all I’m thinking about is keeping Nigel’s tail in the same spot and getting



the hands and feet to work so that it stays there.” Number three slot has been taken up by New Zealander Ivan Krippner, an experienced aerobatic instructor. “I had my PPL at 19, though at that age I was a multiple RC model aerobatic champion so I learned my aerobatic skills from the models,” he says. “I’ve actually found that young students who have done a lot of radio control flying tend to make better students.” The aircraft Ivan has been given to fly in the team meets with his approval. “I’m happy to be flying the S2C as it is my favorite aerobatic aircraft, with the SU26 the second. I have a Bushby Midget Mustang at home that I’ve had since I was 19, which I also have a soft spot for because it’s what I used to learn aerobatics. “This team is fantastic. As a senior instructor it’s great to have a bunch of

guys who have a positive spin on aviation. There’s a lot of negativity out there from the public and from aviators so it’s great to see people who want to put something back into it, to get young people to say ‘hey it’s not all about the airlines but it’s about having fun’. “The Wright Brothers weren’t thinking about 30,000 feet when they were learning to fly. Instead they were flying around the trees, using their hands and feet, which is what we do today with aerobatics.” There’s even an RV-7 in the team to help show what a regular home-built GA aeroplane is capable of. Mike Jones is on board and hopes to show how accessible and fun a plane like the RV can be. “I’ve been doing aerobatics for a number of years now and I’m very happy to be a part of the team with my RV-7. It took me four and a half years to build and I’ve been flying IT for two years now. It’ll be going to

Freedom to Fly – The AOPA Way

Nigel sees the world differently in the SU 26

China, though we are still working out how we are going to show it off. The idea is to demonstrate an aerobatic aircraft that the average person over there can relate to. “I’m just really excited to have the chance to progress along with the team and keep learning.” The inclusion of Phil Unicomb, another long-term member of Australia’s aerobatic elite, showcases the depth of talent in the team. He is using his years of experience to help the group perfect their routine. “What I am doing this weekend is mainly ground critique, including looking at video clips where I can. Then we have a conference where I make suggestions. “Yesterday they had a proposed routine which I looked at. We made some adjustments to that and I looked at it again without too much input. The idea was to have a look at where they were up to and how it was shaping up. Today was more

of a diagnostic day, looking for typical errors. We focused on specific areas that needed to be worked on. A lot of this has been on the more simple manoeuvers in vic formation looking at the wingover, loop and barrel roll. If they can fly those figures in a nice, clean and tidy fashion then other colour can be added but we have to get the foundation stones right.” Paul has been able to get companies on board that share his vision for an aerobatic team that promotes general aviation at a time the industry is seemingly on the edge of a cliff. “There are some great sponsors on board who share our vision. Rob Mangan’s company Skyfuel is literally a gold-plated sponsor because without fuel support it would be next to impossible to get things moving. It’s worked out well because I bought Rob’s Yak 18T. Rob is also passionate about the Sukhoi as well as a

longtime fan of Nigel Arnot. Ozrunways came on board with iPads and their great software for navigation. “Finally our biggest sponsor agreement is with AOPA because partnering with them not only gives us great coverage through their magazine and website but it also helps us demonstrate something positive the team can put back into the GA industry,” he says “What we are trying to do is promote GA. We don’t want to be the loudest, fastest or the lowest aerobatic team there is, but rather just burn holes in the sky, be safe, and show people what we can do. Then when we land we want to bring the kids in from behind the barriers, sit them in the aeroplanes and show them flying isn’t something that is inaccessible. “I know if we can get that happening we’ll help grow the industry we all feel connected with.” n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



This Husky is No Dog!

The Aviat Husky is a no nonsense taildragger. Mark Smith got the chance to enjoy its charms.



This Husky is No Dog!

Photos: Mark Smith

A quirk of the big tyres is the way the aircraft bounces on the way to the runway, a product of the flat spots created while the aircraft is sitting on the ground.

Bush pilots love tailwheels! It’s a statement that is incredibly obvious, though pilots brought up on nose wheels often ponder why a wheel at the back, with its list of attendant issues regarding the footwork needed to stay tidy on takeoff and landing, is so desirable on rough grass runways. The answer lies in a few different things: a tailwheel keeps the prop well clear of the ground, it produces less drag with two wheels on takeoff once the tail is lifted, and ground handling is simple as the aircraft can pivot on its main gear which enables tighter turns in small spaces. The 1980s were turbulent for US aircraft manufacturing with Cessna and Piper walking away from the light aircraft market due to product liability issues involving airframes the companies had built more than 20 years earlier. It was into this marketplace that Christen Aircraft introduced the Husky in 1987. Frank Christensen had already made his mark in aircraft design, creating the Christen Eagle kit which revolutionised home building. He eventually bought the Pitts aircraft factory and in 1985 designed the Husky after unsuccessfully trying to buy the rights to the Piper Super Cub. He saw an untapped market for a new bush plane to replace the ageing Cubs that were such a huge part of the remote flying scene in places like Alaska. In keeping with the Cub heritage, the Husky has a chrome molybdenum welded fuselage that is fabric-covered up to the


baggage compartment. Unlike the Cub, it is covered in aluminium sheet from the baggage area forward. Aviat Aircaft eventually bought Christen Aircraft and continued to build the Husky. To date more than 650 have left the nest of the manufacturing facility in Afton, Wyoming. The Husky is still in production, with Aviat also building a certified version of the Pitts Special and the kit sets for the home-built versions of the Pitts and the Christen Eagle. It’s one thing to look at the history

of an aeroplane but it’s quite another to go flying in one. Qantas 747 captain Brad Fisher kindly made his 1989 Husky available for a flight test. With legendary tailwheel instructor Steve Curtis making sure Australian Pilot didn’t hurt Brad’s pride and joy, it was time to go bush flying at Camden. Brad’s Husky is fitted with 74cm x 33cm Alaskan Bushwheels that scream off-airport operations, but with time constraints the best we could do was a session of circuits and upper air work. With such big wheels you don’t climb I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



A flight over the green near Camden

into the Husky, but rather mount the machine. The technique is to climb onto the left wheel, swing your backside onto the window sill, then lift your left leg over the stick as you slide your backside onto the seat. Anyone who can do that gracefully deserves a prize! Once on board it’s obvious the only real commonality with the old Super Cub is that they are both tailwheel aeroplanes. The Husky is much bigger, with lots of room up front, and behind. The tundra tyres make the seating position incredibly high compared to a regular tailwheel aircraft: the cowl, propeller and sky the only things visible when looking straight ahead on the ground. The design improvements over the PA18-150 see the Husky able to carry a useful load of 420kg as opposed to 370kg for the Super Cub. The Husky comes with a variety of engines ranging from the 160hp 0-320 up to the IO-360 at 200hp. Brad’s is fitted with the 180hp 0-360, which is the most



popular engine for the design. This is matched to a constant speed three blade MT composite prop. It carries about five hours of fuel. With Steve supervising in the back it’s time to go flying. There aren’t many simpler things in life than starting a carburettor-fitted Lycoming engine so after a few pumps of the throttle, turn the key and the noise starts on cue. The tailwheel steering is quite indirect compared to the steering on my Corby Starlet and I tend to wallow from one side to the other before finding my feet. Pressing the rudder pedal starts a slow turn, then you release and the turn continues until opposite rudder is applied. It’s also very easy to ride the brakes so Steve points out the best technique is to just use one’s toes on the very bottom of the pedals unless brake is needed. A quirk of the big tyres is the way the aircraft bounces on the way to the runway, a product of the flat spots created while the aircraft is sitting on the ground.

Rwy 24 is the strip of choice for ATC so with all the checks taken care of the Lycoming is given its voice and the Husky is away. With our weight way below maximum, the acceleration is impressive. In the time it takes to read this, right rudder is applied, the tail comes up and we climb away. Once clear of the obstacles power is reduced to 25/25 for the climb and around 1000fpm shows up on the VSI with quite a steep climb angle. At this stage the speed is around 70kts and we’d used the no-flap option for the first take off. Leveling at circuit height it is obvious this is an aeroplane that needs to flown with the trim. Quickly winding forwards to peg 1200ft and then reducing power to 24/24 sees the speed creep up to 90kts with a pronounced nose-down attitude. Steve says this is about the TAS that is expected with the bush tyres on. The tower allows us to do our circuits on the grass, which is much better for

This Husky is No Dog!

Alaskan Bushwheels for landanywhere operations

the very expensive tyres. Downwind the power comes back to 23/23, with the trim coming back and the speed coming back to 80kts. A further power reduction as we turn base and the 64kt flap speed comes up allowing for the first stage of the manual flaps to be deployed. The pitch change with flap is very pronounced so more wheeling of the trim wheel is needed. The carb heat is in a very difficult position to reach, being just above the mag switches but just below the top of the instrument panel. Speed drops to a shade below 60kts as we turn finals allowing for the second stage of flaps to come in and I hold 55 to 60kts until we cross the mythical fence. I then pull the final dribble of power off as the nose comes up, the world disappears from in front of us and the big soft tyres iron out the hard spots from my touchdown. Then, we drop the flaps, power up and head off for another go.

Steve demonstrates a short-field take off from the back seat. Basically this entails full flap, bringing the power up and letting the aircraft lift off in a three point attitude before pushing the nose over slightly to pick up a bit more speed. I’m guessing we used about 130m on a nil wind day. Upper air work is not a chore as the Husky displays impeccable manners. Turns need a degree of rudder coordination which isn’t a problem and the stick forces are nice and light without the control response feeling in any way sensitive. Once trimmed it rides the chop very nicely as the ground warms up. Visibility is excellent forward and below, while above is better than average thanks to the seating position being forward enough to take advantage of the top of the windscreen being curved into the leading edge. The pilot simply needs to lean forward a touch to see what’s above. Stalls are a non-event, which is to

expected in an aeroplane that is designed to be spend its life getting in and out of difficult runways where predictable slow speed flight means the difference between getting the job done or flying away and losing out to another operator. Full flap, no power and the speed drops to 44kts before there was a buffet, with a full stall coming at about 39kts with no wing drop. Steve tells me by playing with power and attitude you can hold off the stall for another four or five knots at low weights, which is in evident when watching videos of Huskies participating in STOL contests. Brad Fisher says logic didn’t play a huge part in his decision to buy a Husky. “I used to tow gliders in a Super Cub so there was a bit of nostalgia involved in buying a rag and tube taildragger,” he says. “With its STOL characteristics it means it’s just a simple, safe plane to fly that’s also a lot of fun.” n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



South Australia’s Unknown Hideaway Bas Scheffers uses his Cirrus to visit a hidden gem off the South Australian coast. One of the greatest privileges of flying is visiting places few earthbound travellers visit simply because they are too hard to get to, and islands have always had a special attraction to pilots. Hamilton, King and Kangaroo islands come to mind without the hassle and expense of ferries or airline flights. If you are looking for a really secluded spot, Flinders Island, just off the west coast of South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula, is hard to beat. All of its 9000 acres can be yours with no one else around. For the past 30 years, Streaky Bay farmer Peter Woolford, a pilot himself, has owned the island. In its heyday Peter ran 6000 sheep on the island, but there is much more history here as the island has been in use for hundreds of years.



We set off from Parafield on a Friday afternoon in sweltering heat and the fully loaded little SR20 barely drags itself into the air, slowly climbing to cooler altitudes for our 90 minute flight to the island. Overhead, the house and strip are clearly visible and on touch-down it is clear the grass strip is more than smooth enough to be comfortable for any aircraft. It does change direction a bit halfway and slopes up a bit from the middle in both directions (more so towards the south) but you do have a total of close to 1000 meters. There’s also an easily visible big yellow windsock on the southern end. The main residence was the Woolford family home until the demands of children growing up and needing schooling made it too hard to stay on the island. With five

Photos: Bas Scheffers bedrooms, it’s a great group getaway location and there is 24/7 power thanks to solar with big battery system, cooking is on gas with bottles Peter brings in by boat, and there’s plenty of rainwater in the tanks. Apart from a few high spots where you can get Telstra, there is no mobile reception but there is a landline telephone which is connected via HF to an exchange on the mainland. While unloading the plane and putting the food we brought for the weekend into the fridge, the kids quickly found their way to the beach right outside the house and found crabs, abalone and other sea creatures among the rocks. Choppy seas prevented Peter traveling to the island by boat to give us the tour on Saturday morning, so I fired

Flinders Island - South Australia’s Unknown Hideaway

up the Cirrus for the 20nm flight to the town of Elliston, which was also a good opportunity to get some fresh goodies from the local bakery and general store. Peter is keen to give new visitors a tour of the island using one of 4WD vehicles available to the guests as there’s a lot to see if you know how to get there! The rich history of the island started with whaling and sealing stations, and extracting guano from various caves along the 50km of coast line. Farming use included running cattle, growing crops and use as a sheep station by Peter. There are still about 600 sheep on the island. The evidence of this activity is all around with shipwrecks on the shore, the remains of farmhouse chimneys scattered in overgrown fields, and ancient hand and horse-operated farm equipment slowly rusting away nearby. More modern remnants also abound, including the rusted-out wreck of a crane whose back broke on its last job of replacing the head on a windmill used to pump bore water into stock troughs, which itself is now decommissioned and replaced with solar operated electric pumps. For the fishermen among us, there are plenty of whiting, snapper, salmon and more to be caught from the shore or aboard 15ft aluminium dinghy with 40hp outboard motor. Or go swimming or surfing on one of the many sandy beaches, do some snorkelling or diving, or go for a hike. It’s easy to fill a weekend in this place! Strip details: YFLS – Flinders Island. S33 43.7 E134 30.0 19/01 1000 meters, elevation 45 ft., grass/dirt surface. Nearby fuel: Port Lincoln and Ceduna. n For more information and how to book, visit or call 0428 261 132 I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Bobby and the Jets! Bob Carlton is an airshow performer who uses small jet engines to put on a big display. Mark Smith met him at Avalon. Airshow fans tend to come to airshows to watch jets – the bigger and noisier, the better. This makes it very interesting to stand at the back of the crowd line and watch the punters’ faces as they hear a jet taking off yet can’t see it because of the people in front of them. Noisy jets are usually big enough to allow those 10 back from the fence to see at least the top of the fuselage. It’s only when Bob Carlton’s SubSonex JSX-2 microjet actually lifts off that the crowd can then see what’s been making all the noise because, while the sound is almost the same as its bigger military cousins, it’s diminutive size shows great aeroplanes can come in very small packages. A retired rocket scientist, Bob began researching small jet engines about 12 years ago as a way of launching his Salto sailplane at airshows.



“I got tired of hiring tow planes for my glider and I found some small jet engines designed for model aircraft use so I put two on my glider,” he says as he sits next to the tiny SubSonex at the Avalon Airshow. “Then I discovered the PBS TJ-100 engine, which was so much better than the model aircraft engines I’d been using. It was a game changer. It starts every time and it’s powerful.” The engine Bob uses was originally designed for use in auxiliary power units on Russian jets. A decline in demand for APUs as the Russian economy stagnated saw the company begin to develop the engine used in the Safire APU as a standalone powerplant for small aircraft. “This engine isn’t just an APU engine with the wheels taken off. The company used the experience they had building APU engines to begin the development of this engine. It was developed knowing

a market would emerge for the engine,” Bob says. The engine weighs 20kg and puts out 113kg of thrust. “I’ve flown it over 300 miles cross country. At cruise altitude, between 15,000ft and 17,000ft , we are burning around 60lph at 200kts.” Bob started flying aerobatics with hang gliders at 19 and progressed on to gliders. In 1993 he started performing at airshows after watching another glider aerobatics legend perform. “I saw Manfred Radius perform in Albuquerque with his glider and I thought ‘wow somebody can actually get paid to fly aerobatics in a glider’. “That got me started down this road and a few years later, in 1993, I bought my Salto glider. I also bought my own towplane, a Steen Skybolt biplane, and I built a trailer to carry that and my glider. That worked but it’s two aircraft and two pilots

Bobby and the Jets!

Photos: Mark Smith

Bob wheels his jet through the crowd to the flightline.

with a lot more logistics. Then the little jets came along so I put the two model aeroplane jets on and after that the PBS on my Salto.” It was through Bob’s work fitting the PBS jet to his sailplane that Sonex came into the picture. “Sonex were using another engine that never worked and after several years they hadn’t got all the parts for it so I talked them into working with PBS and that’s how I ended up doing all the test flying on the program,” he says. It’s obvious the tiny jet is based on the original Sonex design that came from the pen of John Monnett, with all of the construction techniques similar to the more common propeller driven homebuilts the company is famous for. “It does have the same aerofoil as the propeller aeroplanes, which is not the fastest aerofoil around but it’s the one that is most forgiving at low speeds because

It’s obvious the tiny jet is based on the original Sonex design that came from the pen of John Monnett, with all of the construction techniques similar to the more common propeller driven home-builts the company is famous for. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Bob Carlton

Flying getting an extra 20kts doesn’t help if the first three builders kill themselves on landing. So, unlike some other small jets that have a pretty bad reputation for stall spin accidents, this is a very forgiving aeroplane.” With so much experience on the tiny jet, Bob’s airshow act is a graceful display comprising low level passes, loops and rolls flown with ease, demonstrating the power the TH-100 generates. Bob says flying the SubSonex is well within the capabilities of the average pilot. “You are very low to the ground,” he says as he talks about what’s involved in flying the JS-2. As the power comes up you can feel the nose gear move down



due to the high mounting point of the engine. There is also a distinctive note from the engine at full power. “At 90mph I ease back on the side stick and as soon as I have a positive rate of climb I have to get the gear up before the 130mph gear extension speed is reached. When the gear is stowed the speed increases to 150mph and at sea level I’m seeing just over 2000fpm climb. Full power is limited to five minutes. Maximum continuous power is 92% rpm, which is around 70% power, so in level flight after reaching a safe turn back height of around 3000ft this is what I pull the throttle back to, and then maintain 200mph. “It’s very light in all three axis. n

By Bob Carlton In essence, flying a small jet is like driving a car that only has fifth gear. Don’t expect jackrabbit starts! However, unlike a propeller which loses thrust with increasing airspeed, the jet just continues to push. Its thrust even increases slightly with speed. The takeoff roll begins at a stately pace but increases steadily to a rotation speed of 90mph, at which time you become fully aware of the diminutive four-inch main wheels and lack of spring suspension. A slight pull on the side stick and you’re airborne. With no pounding pistons, pulsing prop, or propeller slipstream, the instant

Bobby and the Jets!

the SubSonex transformation from an overspeeding wagon to intense smooth is nothing short of inspirational. The acceleration continues, quickly pushing the little craft to its best climb speed of 140mph. A little nose up and she’s rocketing skyward at nearly 2000fpm. Once airborne, there are no surprises. With the SubSonex’s light weight, ample control surfaces and short wings, handling is understandably sporty, but not twitchy. With the pilot’s fullforward position and no engine or propeller up front, visibility through the bubble canopy is superb. With a good pair of noise-cancelling headsets, the experience is a bit glider-like, except for the speed and climb rate.

The 22-plus gallon/hour fuel burn tapers off to 18 at 10,000ft and 14 at 17,500ft. Nosing over slightly settles the SubSonex into a cruise speed of 190mph true. When it’s time to come down, reducing power to 70 percent rpm while maintaining 140mph provides an average descent of about 800fpm. Landing is straightforward as long as you remember that energy corrections don’t happen instantly. Setting up a slightly higher than normal pattern, and remembering the fifth-gear-only sensation at the beginning of the takeoff roll, a long, stable final approach is in order. With flaps at 30 degrees, 90mph provides a comfortable margin above stall and crisp control feedback. Some glide-

angle adjustment is available by manually increasing flaps, which increases drag a bit, and there’s no settling when returned to the 30-degree detent. Because of the time required to add energy, and a slight nose-down tendency when adding full power at low airspeed, a decision to go around should be made early. The flat approach angle and the wing’s proximity to the ground mean only a slight flare is required—just be careful not to flare too high if you’re used to a taller airplane. Once the mains touch down, the nosewheel lowers quickly and she’s firmly planted. Steering requires only a light touch of the rudder pedals. The disc brakes bring her to a stop in less than 1000ft. n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Flying the Impressive New Piper M600 AOPA European correspondent Rob Akron got an exclusive test flight in the all-new Piper M600 It’s been a little while since Piper brought out a completely new product. There may be good reason for this – those keeping up to date with rumours may have heard about Piper working on a Piper jet program with the PA-47 Altair. Work was indeed done on the new aircraft and a single prototype actually flew, but the program was ultimately shelved following industry demand studies. The Piper team instead reallocated their resources to a follow-on aircraft for the Piper M series. A new aircraft would be needed to keep the M series alive but still stay ahead of the demands of the market in terms of increased useful loads, cruise speeds, and climb performance. The Piper M600 was born out of the



ashes of the Altair project. “The Altair project wasn’t wasted. A lot of what we learned and a lot of the aircraft systems went into the M600,” says Piper aircraft sales director Jacqueline Carlon. The powerplant chosen for the M600 is the PT6A-42A flat rated at 600 shp, which would give a fully loaded 2722kg M600 a climb rate in excess of 1600ft per minute. The performance increase over the original M500 is about 20% for both MTOW and available power. Time to cruise height of FL 280 would be 16 minutes at MTOW. An empty weight of 1655kg gives a significant useful load of 1088kg. “You almost always cruise at max FL in this aircraft. Time to height is so short that it simply doesn’t make any sense

to not do so on any flight exceeding 40 minutes,” explains Martin Rychtalik, my demonstration pilot for the test flight. The target market for the M600 is the owner-operator, although a recent change in legislation allowing single engine IFR turbine commercial operations is expected to cause some change to this. More than 95% of previous incarnations of the M series aircraft are flying with owner-operators. The night before the test, Martin and I discussed the flight, the plan to file, the images we wanted to get, and the aircraft limits we wanted to explore. Considering the Australian market with, potential short rough runway operations, I mentioned that I’d like to see a performance take off involving brakes

Flying the Impressive New Piper M600

A normal cockpit on a 21stC aeroplane.

The M600 flies into Germany.

on, spin up to full power, and release. “Unfortunately we can’t do that,” Martin says. “The engine will drag the aircraft with the wheels locked.” Martin flies with OK Aviation, a European Piper dealer just south of Prague. He is the pilot who flew this particular aircraft from the US to Europe. It’s the first M600 to leave the US, and given the significantly higher cruise range of the aircraft relative to previous M models, the team made the decision to avoid landing fees across Greenland and Iceland and instead cross the Atlantic direct, coming over the Azores. You can’t install ferry tanks in pressurised aircraft so it came across stock standard. There are some significant differences in how regulators see the M600. Under the FAA, the M600 is just another M class aircraft which means that pilots upgrading from an M350 or M500 will

Fine leather interior

legally only require differences training. It’s not yet clear how the M600 will be categorised under Australian CASA regulations, but Jacqueline imagines it will be closer to FAA requirements than EASA. “We can do quite a bit of the training in the certified simulator we have, but in all honesty you really do want to spend some time doing landings in the airplane as it does feel much heavier than previous models and takes some getting used to,” she says. Each purchase includes a week-long aircraft-specific pilot training program conducted on the purchaser’s aircraft if so required. The next morning I meet Martin at the aeroplane. Taking a seat in the cockpit, I notice the aircraft’s total time is a mere 25 hrs. It’s clear that Piper sees value for the M600 on the Australian market given

the fact Australian Pilot was given the first test flight after the cross-Atlantic delivery. It’s expected that the aircraft will be the first turbine upgrade for many purchasers entering this performance class. With this target reader in mind I decide to conduct the test-flight from the point of view of a pilot who had never flown a turbine aircraft nor had to deal with a pressurisation system. It turns out that this works quite well because, when I check my logbook, I find I have never flown a turbine aircraft or has to deal with a pressurisation system before! Martin assures me this won’t be an issue and we won’t lose valuable instructional time on it during the flight. A single button automatically initiates the engine start process. All the pilot has to do is add fuel with the condition lever once the RPM comes up and monitor the I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



inter-turbine temperature. If by chance a hot start does occur, the pilot cuts the fuel and can try again in 30 seconds. The pressurisation system is just as simple. You close the main door, set outflow valves to normal, and the pressurisation selector to normal and the computer does the rest. At the maximum height of FL300 the cabin altitude is just under 10,000ft. As aircraft in this category are not equipped for reduced vertical separation minima (RVSM), airspace clearances will generally keep you at FL280 anyway. On descent the reverse occurs and the computer will “land” the cabin and automatically equalise pressure before the aircraft touches down. Should by some error the cabin still be pressurised, a dump is activated on ground contact equalising pressure and doing little more than popping your ears. Even at idle power the taxiing aircraft will continue to accelerate unacceptably. To slow the aircraft we don’t touch brakes, but instead lift the single power lever up over a detent into the beta



(reverse thrust) range. A squat switch prevents activation of beta when in flight. I can already feel how heavy the nosewheel steering is on the ground. It is a heavier aircraft on the controls compared to the twin engine and slightly larger Piper Navajo which I’ve flown in skydive ops. Differential braking is not needed. Visibility over the nose and in all directions is excellent. The new Garmin G3000 triple PFD/ MFD integration plus dual touch screen input pads is astonishing, and would deserve an entire article in itself. Martin explains it requires some schooling, but no task is more than two button presses deep. He shows me a safe taxi feature, which positions the aircraft exactly on an airport map, allowing the pilot to orient himself even in poor visibility, though it is not meant as a sole means of on ground navigation. The taxiway is clogged with GA aircraft leaving the Aero Expo, with the VFR departure delay approaching 30 minutes. As an IFR departure however we’re conveniently routed around the mess for

a priority line-up. There would have been a lot of annoyed pilots following us. There are three flap settings: up, takeoff and landing. Three guesses as to what we had set! After clearance I advance the single power lever to the stop. Prop pitch control is automatic. True to Martin’s predictions the aircraft skips on the brakes before the turbine fully spins up and we have to release them. Acceleration is immediate and smooth and the lack of vibration is quite novel to me as a piston pilot. Alternate airspeeds are cross-checked at 60 and rotation is at 85kts. Initial Vx climb out at 95 seemed impressive at first – but subsequent acceleration to Vy even more so. We’re loaded somewhere less than 2268kg, but once gear and flaps are up and we’ve stabilised the aircraft at 122kts best rate. I get a chance to look at the VSI tape. We’re exceeding 2700fpm climb and we maintain that rate until we re-settle for a cruise climb speed around 160kts from 10,000ft. From there we continue at a measly 2300fpm. Martin says it’s 12 minutes to height when light,

Flying the Impressive New Piper M600

It seems there’s a standard door height for personal hangars. We found out our tail is two inches below it. It turns out the TBM is two inches too tall.”

16 minutes at MTOW. I saw the numbers and I believe him. Below FL230 it’s possible to maintain full power on the engine, but as we cross this level power output to the engine has to be steadily reduced to keep turbine temperatures off the red line. Another interesting thing happens around FL240: as the density of the air reduces this is approximately the flight level at which the maximum allowable airspeed becomes limited not by kts but by Mach. A whopping M0.55 is the magic number. Above this point a little caution is required because the PT6 up is now able to pull the aircraft into its redlines for both airspeed and turbine temperatures in level flight and descent. Indicated cruise TAS is as advertised: I’m seeing level speeds between 275 and 280kts. At this power setting the book range is listed as 1085nm with reserves. A reduction in cruise speeds will allow a range increase up to 1484nm – unmatched in its class. The Piper team was quite helpful, but not nice enough to let me test the claimed endurance limits.

Given the aircraft was in Europe we’ll just have to believe them when they say they crossed the Atlantic. At altitude I get a chance to play with the options on the weather radar. It can be overlaid on the HSI, including traffic from ADSB if needed for a full overview. It’s a very cool feature. Tilting the radar down allows for an overview of terrain, clearly showing the alpine peaks surrounding us way below. Any aircraft designed to operate above FL250 requires quick-donning crew oxygen masks and the M600 is no exception. Oxygen masks are stowed within immediate reach and operable with a single hand. Time of useful consciousness at FL300 in the event of a depressurisation is commonly accepted as being one to three minutes. In the event of a slow depressurisation, the aircraft pressurisation system will issue warnings as the cabin altitude climbs. Should the cabin altitude exceed 10,000ft a caution will sound and display on the Garmin G3000 PFD. If the cabin altitude continues to climb above 12,000ft a

warning will activate. On flights above FL150, the flight computer will sense activity from the pilot. If the pilot has not made inputs for a certain period of time, missing several timed prompts based on altitude, it will engage autopilot hypoxia protection and automatically fly the aircraft down to a safe flight level allowing the pilot to recover. Since I’m not too fussed about normal operation of the aircraft, I ask Martin to show me an emergency depressurisation descent. Perhaps counterintuitively, the first thing Martin does is keep the nose up after reducing power. I remember this part from skydive operations in the Navajo though – Martin is reducing airspeed down to the gear extension speed. As soon as we hit 170kts indicated the gear comes down and the nose is lowered. In the Navajo we used to set one stage of flaps as well, but Martin explains the flap operating arc is too far out of reach at 147KIAS. At just under 170kts with gear down the descent rate stabilises at just under 5000fpm. At this rate it takes about four minutes to I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



get below 10,000ft, or three below the critical 14,000. At just over 10,000ft Martin dumps the cabin pressure for demonstration purposes. The result is unspectacular; it gets cold, our ears pop, and the cabin altitude warning system functions as designed when it reaches 10,000ft. Re-pressurising the cabin happens at the flick of a switch. The aeroplane has an independent envelope protection system which couples through the autopilot servos to counter roll beyond a nominal angle of bank. The countering force is increased beyond a second threshold. Overspeed and underspeed (stall) protections are linked to the pitch axis. The power setting is not incorporated. The envelope protection can be over-powered by the pilot or switched off if specifically required. This will allow stalling the aircraft or exceeding protection limits as required for demonstration purposes, or perhaps when flying specific approaches into airfields requiring manoeuvering. The stall behaviour of the aircraft is unspectacular and typical Piper-friendly, with a slight lowering of the nose allowing reattachment of airflow. It’s worth noting how heavy the airplane feels when it’s being hand flown. It’s not uncomfortably so, but more of a luxurious feel slowing everything down and befitting of the airplane’s internal atmosphere where the aircraft’s spirit is larger than the airframe which contains it. The ailerons are relatively small, with the majority of the trailing edge of the wing being taken up by the large flap sections. They will allow an airspeed reduction down to 62KIAS in the landing configuration at MTOW, with a clean stall speed of 73KIAS. We went for circuit exercises at another local airfield. The heaviness of the pitch control would catch me off guard during my first landing flare, as Jacqueline said it would After that it got easier. A target speed of 95kts on final works well, and the following landings were just fine, both with full flaps and flapless. A slight amount of power is kept in during the flare, both to soften the landing and to reduce spool-up time in case of a go-around. Even under a simulated engine failure the aircraft behaves well, comfortably gliding at 115kts and reaching the runway from downwind with room to spare. The dual-setting flap switch means that the difference between the take-off flap setting and the landing flap



setting is quite significant: from 15 to 75 degrees. The last stage of flap brings in a lot of drag and pitches the nose down. Re-trimming of the aircraft and slight addition of power is needed for a normal approach. For roll-yaw coordination a rudder-aileron linkage assists the pilot. This is a friendly aeroplane that anyone can learn to fly. The Garmin display is also very helpful in maintaining orientation, especially at a new airfield. I had to remember circuits are at 1500ft AGL now and wider because I’m not flying among the pistons anymore. The handbook shows a sea level ISA 1814kg takeoff ground roll at just under 400m. At MTOW this increases to 585m. The numbers for an ISA +20 day (think Australia at 35C) are 450m empty and 662m MTOW. Thou shalt add another 480m and 810m on top of that respectively to get over a 50ft obstacle. An emergency gear extension caps off the exercises. The gravity drop is a familiar and reliable extension method to anyone who’s flown retractable Pipers. The gear locks down instantly without requiring so much as a wiggle on the rudder. The M600 received its FAA certification in June last year. The M600 is fully equipped for flight into known icing (FIKI). De-icing boots, prop, pitot, and windshield heating come standard. Another point of concern I had for the Australian pilot was the handbook limitation on operation from paved runways only. This will also be lifted, I’m assured. Piper first focuses on getting the airplane in the air, then as with previous M class aircraft the unpaved runway

capability is just a certification check which is tagged on later. By the time the aircraft reaches Australia it should be completed. Previous operators of PT6-engined aircraft will be aware that the engine uses a centripetal particle separator to prevent solids ingested in the intake from entering the turbine. Unlike other PT6 engine installations though, the M600 doesn’t have a particle separator door. The particle separator still exists, but the intake has simply been made so large as to accommodate sufficient throughput to feed both the particle separator and the intake simultaneously with minimal loss of power. It’s simply left permanently active, with one less thing for the pilot to worry about. The market for this class of turbines is tight, with TBM being the main competitor. The TBM cruises faster than the M600. But it uses a higher power output version of the PT6 engine burning almost 40% more fuel. The factory base price for the M600 is about $3.9 million. In terms of operating costs, independent statistics from Conklin and deDecker show that the M600 is the best value initial turbine in this comparison; both in acquisition and in operation, with operating costs roughly two-thirds that of the nearest competitor. With a naughty smile, sales director Jacqueline can’t resist one last jab. “It seems there’s a standard door height for personal hangars. We found out our tail is two inches below it. It turns out the TBM is two inches too tall.” n


The S.E.5a: WWI’s Spitfire TAVAS continues its quest to preserve our WWI fighter heritage. Mark Smith saw the latest addition to the fleet. Andrew Carter lives and breathes WWI military history. Through his dedication, hard work and downright bloodymindedness he has assembled a collection of replica and reproduction WWI aircraft that honour and perpetuate the memory of the young men who flew, fought and died in the so-called Great War. The latest in the fleet is a replica of the famous Scout Experimental No 5, an aircraft that is credited with turning the tide of aerial superiority against the Germans in 1917. Like all of the aircraft in The Australian Vintage Aviation Society’s

(TAVAS) squadron it tells the story of a hero of WWI, a man whose story has been lost in the mists of time. More about that later. As Andrew explains, an S.E.5a was high on his wish list right from the beginning of TAVAS. “I always wanted one and in fact I looked at getting one before I bought the Triplane, so it’s been a long time coming. It’s a very important aircraft to have in the collection, given the operational history of the type. It’s an iconic design that, along with the Sopwith Camel, is said to be

responsible for changing the air war for the allies,” he says after flying an air-to-air sortie with the collection’s Bristol Fighter. “Australia operated them, not only with RFC and the AFC, but when the RAAF was formed on March 1 1921 we were gifted 35 so we operated them well into the late 1920s.” TAVAS’s S.E.5a falls into their classification as a replica, being an aircraft that isn’t 100% faithful to the original. A reproduction, such as their EIII and DVIII is an example that is as close to the original as possible, right down to the covering I AUSTRALIAN PILOT I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



materials and engine. Andrew points out that with only one original S.E.5a, which is still flying with the Shuttleworth Collection, finding full scale replicas is difficult. “Full scale replicas are hard to come by. There are quite a few ¾ scale kits available but that’s not what TAVAS is about. The Vintage Aviator in New Zealand built five, with one being offered for sale, but it was way out of our price range. This one came about after some enthusiasts in the US wanted to produce five identical S.E.5as as accurately as possible. In the end they only ended up producing three. One of those is in a museum in America, one might still be flying and one was sent to Holland.” The exported S.E.5a in Holland was a



regular on the airshow circuit until the Dutch government banned the use of aircraft in the experimental category from performing at airshows, so it was once again put on the market. This time Andrew was determined to secure the aircraft for TAVAS. “One of the guys I work with who is very impressed by what TAVAS does approached me and said he was looking for an aircraft and asked what TAVAS needed. So I told him about this one that had come on the market. “It’s ironic because it’s the one I was looking to buy when the Americans were selling it but I missed out then.” With some international dealing the aircraft was secured, though a syndicate

comprising Mac af Uhr, Ross Bate and David Griffith, who were eager to be part of such an iconic aircraft while supporting the goals of TAVAS, ended up buying it. David joined TAVAS engineer Dave Walsh in doing a lot of work on the aircraft. Once they had it in Australia, the real work began in transforming the aircraft from a good replica into a great replica. “The Americans did a great superficial job on it so on the outside it looked interesting, but other than that it had a lot of faults. The owner in Holland made some improvements to it and changed the colour scheme, but the cockpit was completely wrong so that was the first thing to be changed. It was full of modern instruments. An S.E.5a cockpit has a very


Photos: Mark Smith

An original S.E.5a at Point Cook in 1922

Andrew in the S.E.5a is chased by the collections Fokker Triplane, flown by Paul Strike.

specific look and that was our biggest problem. Original S.E.5a instruments are very hard to come by. Over the years I’ve collected a lot of German parts but I have never come across any S.E.5a instruments, so we ended up getting things from NZ, who as always were very helpful.” The initial cockpit rebuild didn’t quite work out as planned so the team had to do it a second time, all in the name of historical accuracy. “A big part of what we do is to allow people up close to the aircraft so they can see exactly what the pilots of the time would have seen, including the cockpits. That’s why it was so important to get it right,” Andrew says. “They hadn’t installed a Lewis gun on

the top wing so we also had to get a reproduction one of those in place. Now all we need to do is put louvres on the radiator and rebuild the undercarriage. The one on the aircraft now is from an S.E.5 not an S.E.5a. “So over time we’ll keep improving it and it will look like million dollars.” Andrew says the aircraft is a delight to fly, with none of the gyroscopic effects found on rotary powered aircraft. “It has very conventional handling for a short-coupled tailwheel aircraft. Obviously we don’t have an original engine in it because they are incredibly hard to come by, but the setup we have got provides pretty much the same power and torque as the original and it’s driving

the same size propeller at the same RPM so we get very similar performance. “Aircraft like the Camel had a rotary engine and you had the gyroscopic effects inherent in having a huge spinning mass of engine at the front. The S.E.5a had an inline Hispano-Suiza 8b, and so it handles in a similar manner to an aircraft today. You have to remember by the time they’d designed the S.E.5 they’d learned a lot about fighter design, and they needed an aircraft that was a bit easier to fly for the inexperienced pilots coming through at the time.” Every aircraft in the TAVAS collection is finished in the colours of an aircraft that was flown by a specific pilot during the Great War, and their S.E.5a is no exception. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



“We completely changed the colour scheme to honour a little-known Australian fighter ace from WWI, Lt Frank Alberry of 2SQN, Australian Flying Corp. He is not very well known in Australia and we want to change that.” Frank was born in Tasmania in 1892. He lived around Port Arthur until, as a youth, he travelled to England and enlisted in the Welsh Guards. However after a year and half he’d decided military life wasn’t for him so he deserted and returned to Australia, rationalising his ‘crime’ that if a war started he would return to military service. He got that chance at the outbreak of WWI and enlisted in the First Australian Imperial Force’s 8th Battalion as an infantryman in August 1914, after having received a free pardon for his previous military misdemeanor. He served in the Gallipoli campaign from beginning to end, was promoted to Lance Corporal, and after attending machine gunners school in February 1916 was promoted to full Corporal, and then Sergeant. A month later he was posted to the British Expeditionary Force and served on



the Western Front in France, commanding a section of four Lewis guns. In July 1916, during the Battle of Pozières, he was wounded after manning his machine gun post under heavy enemy fire for two days. The wound resulted in the loss of his right leg above the knee after being evacuated to a hospital in England. His bravery earned him the Distinguished Conduct Medal. After serving in two of the most deadly theatres of battle you’d think Frank would have taken his medal and gone home. Andrew again takes up the story. “As he was convalescing in England the Army was trying to repatriate him home but he refused to leave. He wanted to stay in the military and fight on. He didn’t want to let his mates down. The British, with their caste system, tried to outsmart him and said the only way he could stay in the Army was to petition King George V, with the mistaken belief that a common man from the ranks would never dare do such a thing. But they didn’t take into account the Australian psyche that says ‘bugger it, if that’s what I have to do, I’ll do it!’ “So he petitions the King, gets an audience with him and explains his

situation. The King’s impressed and said ‘you can stay in the military but if you can’t walk, what will you do?’ “Frank said ‘If I can’t walk, I’ll fly!’ “So the King sent him to a British training squadron, where Frank got his wings and he was sent back to the Western Front near the end of the war. Between September 16 and November 4, 1918, he became an ace flying D 6995, which our aircraft is painted to represent.” It’s worth noting that Frank had the grand total of 75 hours when he began flying combat, a large amount compared to many pilots entering the combat zone at the time. He was able to build the extra time because the commanding officer of the squadron he was at kept Frank out of the front line a further two weeks so he could gain more experience flying with his wooden leg. An interesting perspective on Frank’s achievements and bravery comes a century later from another Australian who has also flown in combat. Matt Hall knows Frank Arberry’s story well and says it’s the dimming of history which seems to make us forget just how brave these young men


The S.E.5a with the collection’s Bristol Fighter.

Lt Frank Alberry DCM.

were. “It is easy to forget these heroes, with minimal footage or photos remaining of these formative years of aviation. In the modern era of social media, it is easy to get swept away in what is happening now, rather than what has happened before,” Matt says. “Reading the accounts of the aerial fights that Lt Frank Alberry was involved in and the rate of effort that was undertaken left me in awe of these WWI pilots. A modern day fighter pilot will receive approximately 300 hours of training over a period of up to three years, prior to being considered combat ready. Then, if combat is experienced, it is conducted at a rate of one sortie every two or three days, in a

pressurised, air-conditioned jet fighter with food, water and methods of bladder relief. It is hard to comprehend that these men were conducting three combat flights per day, in open cockpit aircraft up to altitudes of 18,000ft in freezing conditions, with as little as 45 hours total time in an aircraft. “Additionally, modern day fighter pilots have great situational awareness of what is going on around them, and what is likely to be threatening them at any particular moment, due to electronic surveillance, sensors and intelligence gathering. This allows the modern day fighter pilot to relax at certain times of the mission, due to the knowledge you are under minimal threat from the enemy.

“Directly opposite to this is the WWI fighter pilot. At no time were they safe from the enemy, as patrols from both sides wandered into enemy territory on a daily basis looking for prey. From takeoff to landing, these pilots had to expect the unexpected, be ready to react to an enemy aircraft shooting at them, and be on constant lookout for these threats. There was zero time to relax.” Frank finished the war with seven victories and left England on November 20, 1918. He was officially discharged in March 1919 but remained on the reserve officers list and became a full lieutenant in October 1920. Ironically, with the formation of the RAAF in 1921 he was unable to fly due to being classed as an invalid despite the S.E.5a becoming the main aircraft used by the new arm of the military. He transferred to the retired list in 1925, though rejoined the Airforce reserve in 1939, serving until 1942 as a recruiter. Lt Frank Alberry, DCM, passed away in 1969. n I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Inside Doug’s Big Shed! Doug Hamilton is a stalwart of the warbird community. He takes Mark Smith on a tour of his ‘shed’ at Wangaratta. Doug Hamilton is a man who chooses his words carefully. A long term member of the warbirds fraternity, he is responsible for reviving the Wangaratta-based restoration facility originally founded by Murray Griffiths. In Murray’s time it had a well earned international reputation for building Kittyhawk fighters, as well as the many specialist parts needed by other warbird builders for their projects around the world. During the time Doug was having his Kittyhawk restored at the facility, it looked like progress would be halted after



the death of its founder Murray. When the hangar that was formally home to the Drage Airworld Museum was put up for sale Doug became more involved by purchasing it. “I had my P-40 being re-built by Precision Aerospace. With the sad events around Murray’s passing I could see that it was probably going to close down. With an incomplete P40, I was almost forced to do something to keep it running. I saw what they were doing and I thought I can’t let that shut down. What the boys were doing in that

hangar was pretty amazing.” Two years on and Doug’s Kittyhawk is now flying and a regular performer at events across Australia. His growing adventure flight business Classic Air Adventures gives people the chance to fly in a PT22 Ryan, a Harvard or the iconic WWII Kittyhawk and experience the steps a young 1940s pilot would have taken to become a fighter pilot. Business is good and continues to grow with many projects at various stages of completion. A water jet cutter is the latest addition, as well as a line


Photos: Mark Smith

We make parts for clients doing restorations all around the World. With our CNC and sheet metal ability, we make components for pretty much anything.

A P-40 fuselage under construction

up of CNC machines that allow complex parts that would normally require days of hands on lathe work to create, to be made quickly once the necessary computer programming has been done. “Im lucky that the blokes that were working here when the hangar was sold have stayed on. They are a good bunch of guys with lots of skill and experience.” But restoring Kittyhawks is the operation’s specialty. “We have five almost completed fuselages as a well as many other components. There is plenty of P-40 stuff going on. We actually have more than 5

customers who want a Kittyhawk. There is a lot of demand for the aeroplane.” Doug says the single factor that usually determines how fast a Kittyhawk can be restored is the one common to most things – money. “Potentially, we should be able to restore a P-40 in a couple of years if there were no constraints” Like any specialised aviation engineering business one of the other limiting factors is finding people, with the necessary skills to undertake such specialised work. Currently Doug has 10 on board, but says that’s not enough to keep up with the

work coming in. “You don’t easily find guys with the special skills and passion needed that are available do this sort of work “ Apart from the work on P-40s Doug’s company is involved in helps build components for other warbird owners, including some notable collectors. “With visits from notable collectors around the world, feedback is that they are just happy that this place is still up and running. The orders for parts and components keep coming in. The support is fantastic.” “We make parts for clients doing restorations all around the world. With I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Dick Latham

our CNC and sheet metal ability, we make components for pretty much anything”. “We make components for lots of aircraft some months we may work on parts for a Corsair, Airvan, FW190 , Cessna, Wako, some motorbike bits and maybe some bits for our earthmoving business as well. Whatever it is, we can create parts to keep it going.” The sound of rivet guns echo in the huge hangar as another P-40 comes together. Where during WWII a fuselage would be covered in workers, mostly women, as the need for aircraft became all consuming, just two workers attend to this one, though as experienced sheet metal worker Dick Latham points out, they get to spend a bit more time on the aircraft so the quality should be better. “During the war it was a race to get these finished, out and into the fight, so when we pull apart an original structure we do see examples of that. There was no deburring of rivet holes and obviously not a huge focus on corrosion proofing. We spend a lot of time making sure these aircraft are going to last,” he says as he stands inside a P-40 fuselage, helping buck rivets the same way it was done in 1944. Doug’s flying career started many years ago, as a 17 year old in a 172, but like most pilots the desire started much earlier. “I just loved aeroplanes since I was a little fella. I’d see an aeroplane go past and was just fascinated by it,” he says. Doug purchased his first aeroplane in 1988, a Winjeel, which was the start of his warbird journey. “My brother in law had a Tiger Moth we



kept in the hangar with the Winjeel on my farm and I used to fly it around a bit. And then probably the next aeroplane I bought was the Harvard that we rebuilt. It was part of the Air World Collection, though I got hold of it while the museum was still running. I sold the Winjeel, but I’ve still got the Harvard. I couldn’t sell ‘Harold’.” Doug’s Harvard was built in 1941 and is a former Royal New Zealand Air Force example. But along the way he’s accumulated a few more aircraft, with an Aeronca Champ at one end of the scale to a Lockheed 12 at the other. Throw in Clive Canning’s famous homebuilt Thorp T18, VH-CMC, which flew from Australia to England and back in 1976, his Kittyhawk, a CAC Ceres ag plane, a Decathlon, the obligatory C182 and a Kiowa helicopter and you get the idea he’s an enthusiast with a passion for variety in what he flies. “The Champ’s fun because it’s so simple and you get such a great view out of it. It is the training aeroplane for our RA Aus flying school” he says. “We’ve done lots of training in that little aeroplane and a lot of people have done their first solo in it. I still like to take it out every couple of weeks.” And on learning to fly the Kiowa? “It’s fantastic. It’s been a great thing to do, to move off in a little bit of a different direction and really go back to the basics learning to fly something completely different. I absolutely love it.” “Oh it’s very solid and fast, great for aerobatics. It’s just like a real WWII fighter was meant to be.” n


The team at Precision Airmotive

A P-40 wing under construction. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



Meet Our New Directors CATHERINE FITZSIMONS, BA, MBA, GAID, CPL Catherine is an aviation professional and qualified flight instructor (aeroplane) with a passion for teaching and learning, and a deeply rooted sensitivity for the importance of systems, processes and the right culture to ensure safe and compliant enjoyment of aviation. She is an experienced CEO and general manager with a domestic and international track record of identifying change opportunities and leading commercial turnarounds

in consumer health/FMCG and nutrition businesses with multi-national companies. As an experienced Non-Executive Director (not for profit and industry boards) and highly practiced leader and chair of cross-functional executive boards/senior management teams she is able to bring focus, clarity, efficiency and energy to board and leadership teams. CURRENT EMPLOYMENT WARDAIR Flight Training, Bathurst NSW Chief Flight Instructor and Chief Pilot (HOO) / Owner and operator / Director

JOHN GLYNN, Dip Law, SAB John joined AOPA Australia during the

Tribunal, Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal.

mid-1980s after purchasing his first

He has obtained a special and intimate insight into many of

aircraft. He remained a member since

the problems face by AOPA Australia members in dealing with

and has subsequently has been invloved

the regulator and generally in respect to the operation of aircraft.

in three aircraft.

Presently he has an

interest in a Cirrus SR20 which is based at Tamworth Airport, NSW. As well as being an aircraft owner he has been a lawyer for 30 years, specialising in aviation law, acting for many aircraft owners, pilots and engineers in legal matters involving the

John has also had direct experience in the aviation industry, having been involved in several flying operations, including a small regional airline in Wagga Wagga during the 1980’s and was a RAAF Reserve Legal Officer from 1980 to 1994. CURRENT EMPLOYMENT

aviation industry. He has also run numerous cases against the


regulator on behalf of clients in the Administrative Appeals

Special Counsel Aviation (Since 2015)

AMINTA HENESSY, OAM Aminta is a veteran of the aviation industry and was awarded the Order of Australian medal in 2005 for service to aviation as a pilot and as an instructor through the establishment of the Australian Association of Flight Instructors. She says the reason she’s taken a directorship with AOPA is that for the first time in many years she has been impressed with the activity surrounding the association after the appointment of Ben Morgan and his drive, vision and above all creativity to turn around general aviation. She says the large



increase in membership of AOPA means there is more money to take the fight to the regulators who have for many years done their best to put general aviation out of business. “I wish this demise to be turned around and I wish Australia to get back to the level of aviation activity and vision that was so obvious when I first came to this country. Australia allowed me to realise my childhood dream and now I wish to put back and help.” CURRENT EMPLOYMENT CLAMBACK & HENNESSY, Bankstown NSW Co-Founder / Chief Pilot & Chief Flying Instructor (Since 1985)

Meet Our New Directors

DOMINIC JAMES, BSc (AVI) Dominic has always had a huge passion for general aviation and from a very young age was single minded about becoming a commercial pilot. he commenced his flying career in 1994, completing an Aviation Science degree at the University of Newcastle and since then has gained a fixed wing ATPL, a helicopter CPL and a UAV controller certificate. Dominic’s career has involved a wide range of roles and has flown commercially in 48 different aircraft and helicopters, ranging from Tiger Moth’s to Jet Rangers and Citations - flying has and continues to be a passion. He strongly believes that the Australian aviation industry is in urgent need of support and reform so that aircraft owners and pilots can freely go about their business without

unnecessary restrictions. Presently there are too many limitations imposed by industry bureaucracies that negatively impact the activities of general aviation participants. AOPA Australia’s reform agenda aligns closely with his own long held views and he hopes to support my industry going forward as a director of the association. CURRENT EMPLOYMENT BLACK AVIATION CONSULTANCY, Sydney NSW Co-Founder / Director (Since 2015)

MIKE SMITH Mike Smith comes onto the board having held senior positions with both Airservices Australia and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, most recently as the Deputy Director. He has led numerous complex programs including the introduction of Global Navigation Satellite Systems for en-route, nonprecision and precision approach use, development and introduction of Safety Management Systems (SMS) and Australian Airspace Reform. Mike is an an internationally recognised aviation expert with over 30 years of experience in civil aviation with a substantial knowledge of corporate governance, regulatory processes and safety management systems. His aviation qualifications include both Australian and United States FAA licences encompassing a broad spectrum of activity,

from aircraft maintenance though to airline transport pilot, recreational and sports flying operations. Since leaving the Australian Public Service, he has been engaged as a senior consultant by airlines and aviation regulators around the world, predominantly advising clients in the areas of regulatory reform. He also runs a flight school and aircraft maintenance business with his wife in Sacramento, California USA and actively flys their family Beechcraft Duchess and Cessna 172. CURRENT EMPLOYMENT WARDAIR Flight Training, Bathurst NSW

PHIL YATES Phil Yates has been a member of AOPA over many years, going

the regulator or we will be doomed. He

back to the era when experienced people from WWII held

says those with long term experience

the reins. Sadly he sees that despite many name changes, the

in aviation need to lend a hand and

experience level in the regulator continues to decline.

put something back into the industry

He says general aviation now is burdened with complicated regulations that pilots struggle to comprehend and expenses which have seen many pilots simply throw their hands in the air

if they can. Phil holds and ATPL and owns a Piper Comanche and a Cherokee 6.

and walk away. Further to this, he says commercial pressures have seen the demise of airports and many small flying schools have simply packed it all in and closed shop. He believes change can only be achieved with the support of

CURRENT EMPLOYMENT University of New South Wales, Bankstown Airport NSW Flight Instructor I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



» Victoria


DIRECTORY iation related To advertise your av 9791 9099 service here Call 02 or email: advertising@aopa

» South Australia

220 Chesterville Road, Moorabbin, 3189 MAIL TO: P.O. Box 615 Moorabbin, 3189 PHONE 61 3 9532 1411, FAX 61 3 9532 3001 ask for TONY TAGGART E-MAIL


“There are three kinds of people those who can count and those who can’t” ~ Wincorn’s Law call SMITH TAGGART, CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS


ENQUIRIES PHONE 0407 602 077 or 0419 826 754

AVGAS Naracoorte Credit card bowser - 24/7 NO LANDING FEES Enquiries (08) 8762 1721




» Queensland

an ames Jan James


Aviation Insurance Consultants

Aviation Insurance Consultants

(02) 6294 1383 General AviationPhInsurance Products Fax Non-Ownership (02) 6294 9026 Hull and Liability, Aircraft Liability PhMobile: (02) 6294 04161383 022 490 Aerial Application Liability, Hangarkeepers Liability, Fax (02) 6294 9026 Email: Freight Insurance Mobile: 0416 022 490


68181 JJ 01

68181 JJ 01

Email: 134 Calwell ACT 2905 PhPO (02)Box 6294 1383 Mobile: 0416 022 490 C ANBERRA A GENT FOR QBE A VIATION Email: PO POBox Box3005, 134 Lemon CalwellTree ACTPassage 2905 NSW 2319

» National


Looking for Cheaper Maintenance for your aircraft I may be able to help you For example 100 hourly from $1100.00 inc GST (Plus parts as required)


CENTRAL AVIATION Aircraft Maintenance Engineers

For details phone Doug 0418 624 297 HANGAR 272 BANKSTOWN AIRPORT SYDNEY NSW 2200

Founded in 1950 by pioneering aviatrix the late Nancy-Bird Walton, the AWPA aims to: • Assist women to follow their piloting aspirations in fixed wing, rotary wing, recreational, gliding or ballooning • Encourage networking among women pilots • Promote training, employment and careers in aviation Activities and services include: - Meetings and get togethers - Guest speakers - Fly-aways - Airnews magazine An extensive range of scholarships and awards – 2017 applications now open. Annual conferences that include educational seminars, social functions, air navigation trial, and presentation of trophies, scholarships and awards. Information and application forms – go to: I AUSTRALIAN PILOT I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



» New South Wales

» Queensland

Flying Safaris AROUND THE CENTRE 6th – 15th May 2017

Fly with us and visit Central Australia’s most iconic sites Lake Mungo, Trilby Station, Noccundra Pub, Birdsville, Kings Canyon, Uluru, Curtin Springs, William Creek, Lake Eyre, Flinders Ranges

Aussie Fly-Aways For more detail visit ph: 0395983320 email:

» Victoria

» Northern Territory Barkly Homestead Wayside Inn

Northern Territory - Cnr Barkly & Tableland Highways 19 43’S 135 49’E

NEW AV-GAS TANK! A great place to stop 4 1200 metre airstrip 4 Av-gas tank

4 Fully licensed bar

4 Jet A1

4 Restaurant

4 ATM/Eftpos

4 Air-conditioned motel and cabin accommodation

4 Swimming Pool4

Ph: (08) 8964 4549 Fax: (08) 8964 4543 Email: .au Open 7 days a week, 6.30am to 12pm



Classifieds FOR SALE Aircraft

AEROSTARS TWO of, Aerostar WGK 601P 1978 4000 hours Located Bankstown Missing one motor Machen conversion. Two new machen props AEROSTAR TLL 601P for parts. Motor and props 400 hours – t/r, calendar timed. A/frame unserviceable. Otherwise complete. Located Northam WA can dismantle and freight $50,000 for both Will split phone 0466 305 619

To advertise, email or telephone AOPA on 02 9791 9099

Rosen visors,door Stewart,King radio stack,KMD150 GPS,S-Tech 50 autopilot. $140,000+gst if applic Sensible offers considered. For more info and photos ring 0418-493818

CESSNA A185E Serial # 185 1315, 1968, TT 9900, Prop 0 hrs, 3 Blade, Eng 1500hrs, IO-520F, Previous IFR Rating, now VFR. Current 100 hr inspection. Cargo Pod, not fitted. Factory installed Camera floor opening with SID. 2 Blade Prop as spare, towing gear. Recently fitted Vortex Generators, Wing & Tailplane. Always Hangared, can be seen at Goulburn. $135,000 no GST. Duncan Bray 02 9699 4849, mobile 0427 808 880,

CESSNA 172C wrecking motor continental 1400 hrs t.R. $10,000 AUSTER J5G AUTOCAr VH-JSG a J5G Autocar has finally become available for purchase and is ready for a new home and owner. This aircraft is immaculate and has won Best Auster/Aircraft at every flyin it has been to. JSG has been hangared since restoration, leaving it still looking new. • 180 Hp engine – carries good load off ground in a short distance. • New leading edges • New and improved brakes • New alternating system. For more details, please see or contact Grayden:

CESSNA 172B nil hr continental wings, tailplanes interior stripped  $20,000 will sell nil hr. Motor  firewall forward separate if required. Contact Bruce Symes: mobile 0466 305 619

Avionics:- Garmin G300 MFD. Garmin Radios SL40. Garmin Transponder. Factory Optional Extras include Intercom, EGT Sensor, Ext Receptacle, Sun Visors and Aluminium Prop. Contact Details:- Andrew Crowe Mobile 0428 657 014

2007 Glasair Sportsman 2+2 VH-PNN. 185 hrs TT. Lycoming IO 360. C.S. Hartzel. Dynon D100. VM 1000. Icom IC-A 210 com. GTX 327 Txpdr. Tru Track A/pilot with Alt hold coupled to Bendix King Skymap IIIC. Leather interior. Folding wings. Winner Avalon 2009-Champion Concours D’Elegance & Best Overall Sport Aircraft. $150,000 no GST. Ring Peter Nelson 0418 949 943 or email peternelson666@gmail .com

CESSNA 180. 1956 Low time eng/prop/ airframe. Immaculate 9.5 inside/out. Loaded extras, hangared. Aircraft will be available with fresh 100 hourly and SIDS compliant. Serious enquiries to: hangar.

CESSNA 150K 1969 Engine T.B.O 1,525 Prop 800 VHF- AFD Many spares Always hangered. Call 08 8676 5093 (evenings please)


BONANZA E33. New engine io470n upgrade full life with hartzel 3 blade prop and D/Shannon's baffle kit,fresh annual,total new interior leather seats

Cessna Skycatcher 162 Aircraft Registration:- 24/8182. Aircraft Airframe Total Time TT:- 250. Manufactured:2012. Location:- Moree.Selling Price:$132000 (GST Inclusive)Horse Power:- 100. No Turbo. 1st Life Cycle. Serial No:- 1600198. Propeller Make: Macaulay. Construction:Metal. Propeller TBO: 1750. Primary

To advertise, email or telephone AOPA on 02 9791 9099 I AUSTRALIAN PILOT


MEMBERS MARKETPLACE 4950. 5000 hour centre section and wing attach fitting NDI inspection carried out. Fresh maintenance release. 4 seats, aerobatic, cruiser, tail wheel, 985 powered economical to run and is excellent value and a fantastic historic/ex military a/c AUD $120,000 ono. Call Roger Richards. Melbourne 0419 229 859 or Matt Richards 0417 396 101. FALCO F8L VH-SBD. TT 430hrs. IO360 B1E. Bendix/King KX 155 Nav/Com. Bendix/King KT76A Trans. Garmin GNC 420. PS Eng PM1200 Intercom. EDM 930. Tru Trak autopilot slaved to GPS. Lift Reserve Indicator. Built to ANO 101.28. Previously IFR. Always hangared. Offers around $115,000. Ph.02 4844 3139 or 0427 482123

MAULE M9 First Maule M9 available in Australia, for details contact Rob, email, 0425 252 550

MOONEY M20C TT4513.ETR520.PTR 1270. Fast and economic @ 38 LPH. Very good condition inside and out.Always hangered,nil corrosion. Constant speed retractable .$53k no gst Phone 0418 511 253

CORBY STARLET Built by legendary SAAA builder Keith Jarvis. 280 hours on the airframe. VW 1600 rebuilt 12 hours ago by Stan Pobjoy. Secondary ignition system built by Sig Munniger. Will be sold with fresh annual. Flies like a dream. If I could use this aeroplane for my work, I'd never sell her. But I need something a bit bigger. But please, no dreamers who want a chat. I can't find a way to convince your wife this is a good thing, nor is that my job. If interested call me, 0419 509 548. Based in southern Victoria. $15,000

• Majority of mental parts and all fiberglass mouldings and fairings to complete the project ready to be fitted

• Epoxy test samples of construction and construction progress diarised SPITFIRE SUPERMARINE Mark 25 Mark 25 3/4 scale replica with Experimental CofA VH-XST. Jabiru 3300 with Rotec liquid cooled heads, TBI, & Ignition mods Airmaster elect CSU with 3 blade prop King Avionics. TTIS 70 hours Hangared at Jandakot. Asking $140k but realistic offers considered ( no GST ) Peter 0414 945 129 <>

WINJELL VH – WIJ KYNETON VIC One owner for 32 years since retired from RAAF. Always hangered. ETR 900 hours. PTR 900 hours. TT airframe AUSTRALIAN PILOT I

• Retractable tailwheel mechanisms and electrical motor fitted with dog house and Instrument housing, Polycarbonate canopy, windscreens frames complete

•Comprehensive plans, very detailed, test reports for build progress from SAAA TC’s and AP available. All tools and equipment included in the purchase.“A” grade Sitka Spruce and Birch Ply construction

LAKE RENEGADE LA mod fresh 100 hourly, Eng. 470HTR Prop1990 HTR Garmin 430W King GPS/COM Transponder, switching panel, Gear adv. system, VG kit a/c hangared $150.000 no GST. Contact Ken 0408 254 872 or email


SAL P-51D MUSTANG TWO SEATER (TANDEM) • Plans built 2/3 scale replica. Fuselage & empennage, horizontal / vertical stabiliser/elevators/rudder 90% complete.

• Purchaser to arrange collection or shipping Contact Ken Hodge Email: Mobile: 0404 000 442 $15,000.00 ONO

FLYING RECOLLECTIONS - By Bruce Baily This book is about various flying experiences dating back to when I commenced my career in the early 1950’s. There about 100 stories with lots of photos. Copies of the book are available for $40 plus postage. Postage to SA VIC NSW QLD $13 or WA $8.50 Payments can be made to ; Bruce Bailey, 86 Port Royal Drive, Safety Bay WA 6169 Mobile: 0412 421 032


MUSTANG FLIGHTS. PARAFIELD SYDICATE SHARES AVAILABLE Archer 11. Fly $150 p hour wet and $75 pmonth fixed. See website or phone 0413 987 346.

SHARES IN 1996 A36 BONANZA Fully IFR, autopilot, modern avionics. 170kt TAS, air-con, leather interior. Excellent touring aircraft. Long standing well run syndicate. Aircraft hangared at YSBK. Shares $20,000ea. Contact: 0417 481 529

FOR HIRE GRUMMAN TIGER for pvt hire: TOWNSVILLE. Rate negotiable depending on wet or dry hire. Email 1/3 SHARE IN 1998 CESSNA 182S TTIS 1836 hrs as at 1 Feb 2016 Engine 480hrs SOH (Crankshaft AD) Propeller 1835hrs since new (2000hr TBO) Maintained IFR, aerial work Hangered at YPEF AUD 75,000 Contact: Sean 0417 661 003 Efim 0432 213 802

HELICOPTER Pilots interested in forming a Bell 47 Helicopter Syndicate Contact Jim 0419 600 071

DA40 DIAMOND STAR: Syndicate shares available 2007 model with

G1000 & GFC700 based at Camden. NO UPFRONT FEES, minimum 3 month commitment, $400 per month fixed and $125 per hour. No min hrs (subject to insurance). Photos & info on Call David on 0450 172 299 or email info@​

OTHER Assorted Spare Parts

Parts suitable for Rockwell Commander. Turbo prop. Assorted spare.

Plus workshop tools

(2nd hand); Full micrometer for engine shop, Honing top/complete 3” x 6”, Inclinometer, Oil filter cover cutter +more. TOOLS: Just about to finish building our RV14A. Won’t be needing our tools, benches and equipment soon. One build only - given full TLC. If you are thinking about building an aircraft soon (particularly an RV) we have a complete set of tools and accessories you will need for your build. More comprehensive than those packaged tool sets we bought and then had to add on and onto. Don’t forget the GST and freight costs to import tools +25% on to the purchase price. Replacement cost $8000+. Selling $5500. Contact for full inventory. Alan Carlisle 0403 323 973,

Fly in a real P51 Caboolture QLD. PH 0410 325 644, 02 4963 4024

BUSINESS Aviation Resort

3 HOURS FROM SYDNEY 2 hangars, three houses. Farming operation on 300 acres and accommodation income from houses $1.4 million. For brochure and details call 0413 963 438 or email

Aircraft manufacturing opportunity.

Tooling, drawing components for the Typhoon and Cyclone aircraft. With the latest styling could be easily upgraded to the 600kg LS aircraft. $60,000. Retiring. 07 3205 4452 or 0431 693 280. Leave message if not answered. SHARK BAY AIR CHARTER IS FOR SALE Laid back lifestyle in an idyllic location while supporting yourself by flying. Includes 2 SE aircraft with regular work Ideal for owner/operator, rather than an investor POA. Phone 08 9948 1773

Capitol Aviation Finance Funding is available for the purchase of all types of aircraft. We can structure a package to suit your requirements. Facilities available include:

• • • • •• •• • ••• •• • ••• ••• • • •

Leasing Finance Commercial Hire Purchase

• • • • •• •• • ••• •• • ••• ••• • • •

TYRES: Retread Goodyear 4 off 6.50 – 10 8 PR; 1 Goodyear off 8.50 x 10 8 Ply, Citation (2nd hand); 1 off 22x8.00 x 10, 10ply; 1 off Aviator 8.5 x10, 10PR Contact: Euan 0412 418 345 or email

Funds are also available for replacement engines and major avionics purchases. For funding information call or fax:

David McLean Ph: (02) 9555 8234 Fax: (02) 9555 8573 Mobile: 0412 218 011 Email:

To Advertise in our classifies send an email to; with a short description and picture. I AUSTRALIAN PILOT




ARCHER PARK PROPERTY Archer Park is a pilot’s paradise: 75 Acres of luxurious privacy located in Hervey Bay. 2x brick aircraft hangars, 3x runways, internal asphalt roads. Large brick colonial residence. $1.5 million. Ph. 0412 75 99 77. Email:


GOULBURN AIRPORT Lot 19 Cummins Close, Unique opportunity to secure land at Goulburn Airport. 400 sq m vacant land at Goulburn Airport. Perfect for hangar / aircraft storage. Close to taxiway and runway Good access to site for vehicles Trish Graham 02 4822 1555

Prime site for sale next to the Whitsunday Airport with 1400m sealed runway. Fly in/ fly out to your tropical paradise. Gateway to the magnificent Whitsunday Islands and reef. 4.4 hectares (11 acres) of vacant land zoned rural residential with development approval for a four lot subdivision. Mostly level, partly cleared land featuring rain forest and a seasonal creek. Easy road access to Airlie Beach and Shute Harbour. Town water, electricity and telephone lines to the property boundary. $498,000 Mobile 0417-645268 email:

HANGAR TAREE Recent construction,12*12 metres, concrete floor, 3m sq internal office, additional carport. Front row position. Used to fit B55. Air con, hot water, bifold opening doors. MAKE AN OFFER. Peter 0412884484 or Mark 0418 652 213.

HANGAR AVAILABLE – Bankstown Suit medium size aircraft (King Air) Easy access & large hardstand in front Phone Brad 0419 54 1234

HANGAR SPACE AVAILABLE – Bankstown Suits Baron or Similar Ph: 0407 249 573

RADIOS OR AVIONICS BENDIX KING G.P.S. AV8OR – never used – with all books etc. Price $1100 Contact email: hangar.bum@


3 minutes from Watts Bridge Memorial Airfield. Lovely home on 5 acres. Land is high, flat, and easy to mow. 20,000 galls water. Home as new; timber with iron roof; built 2009 as holiday home. 3 bed, 2 bath; 1 toilet off laundry; open plan lounge, kitchen, dining. Floors polished spotted gum, tiles in wet areas. Wide front verandah, great views to mountains. Large shed for 2 cars, machinery and storage, plus long carport, and 2 garden sheds. 2 reverse cycle a/cs. $430K. Inspect by appointment only. Best contact is: 0732897310, or mobile 0412 889 930 email:

PACIFIC HAVEN AIRPARK QLD 4659 Frazer coast Hervey Bay. 2 Acres large brick four bedroom lowset residence 4 Car garage large boat shed. Hanger with asphalt taxi ways to 3000ft bitummen runway with pal lig Above ground swimming pool. 20.000Gallon watertanks to house. Full share to your private airfield 5 min to Burrum river boat ramp $595,000. mob 0438 00 4471

Classifieds With over 9000 magazines distributed bi-monthly, It pays to advertise with us. To advertise, email or telephone AOPA on 02 9791 9099



JOIN AOPA and Receive Great Benefits AOPA is the only association in GA working directly to represent you. Whether you’re a student, a private pilot or a commercial pilot, we’re here to support you and your needs. In addition to tirelessly advocating on your behalf, we also provide a fantastic range of member benefits. These include an electronic members’ magazine, in addition to our newsstand bi-monthly mag, access to our members only area of our website and regular news updates on any new developments in the industry. As a member, you’ll be the first to know about our safety seminars, and you’ll receive ongoing information about our scholarships and publications, such as the National Airfield Directory. We offer discounts on car hire, Virgin Australia lounge membership and Virgin holidays and discounted spare parts and specials from Hawker Pacific. Join today, and you can start receiving these great benefits right away!

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Mail to form to: AOPA. PO Box 26, Georges Hall NSW 2198 Or Fax to: (02) 97991 9355 I AUSTRALIAN PILOT



A Very Memorable Ferry Flight In the 1960s, I was off to Sydney where a job with Helicopter Utilities, later Airfast, waited. Before leaving Darwin, a friend asked me to ferry his Chipmunk to Adelaide so he could sell it. To re-familiarise myself with the aircraft before the ferry, I asked the aero club instructor to come up with me for a flight. We got carried away doing aerobatics and when I did some inverted flight Peter suddenly shouted at me to land as soon as possible. After a short landing he jumped out and disappeared into a storm drain next to the runway. He rejoined me after I parked the aircraft. “What was all that about,” I asked. “I got a head full of battery acid. A cap must have come off a cell, allowing acid to drain out and run forward into my hair so I had to wash it out in the drain.” Was this to be an omen? We found the errant cap and, with the battery issue sorted, I took off for Adelaide – a trip that would take almost three days due to frequent refueling stops. The flight proceeded as planned until near Barrow Creek. Looking south I saw a very high, apparently solid wall of dust extending to the left and right for a great distance. I buzzed the hotel, landed and was tying the aircraft down when the storm hit. A Connellan’s Cessna appeared out of the brown sky, attempting to land. The pilot was Col Prichard flying the scheduled run from Mt Isa to Alice Springs. His passengers were a Hollywood film star and her female attendants. They were supposed to feature at a meeting in the Alice that night. Due to the massive storm we would only go as far as the nearby hotel.



Being the only building of substance in a bleak, dry landscape, it was a strange gathering of locals and high profile guests who sat in the bar watching the dust settle. An interesting evening followed where I flirted outrageously with the attractive starlets. Next day I flew south in clear skies, pausing briefly in Alice Springs to phone my parents and explain why I had not arrived last evening. The light was fading as I landed at William Creek. Entering a small bar I asked the lone barman if a room was available for the night. Without answering, he turned and reached for the Scotch bottle, poured himself a generous slug, swallowed it, and then faced me. “Bu – bu, but you can’t stay tonight. It’s the annual ball. We always close the hotel and go. It’s the only night of the year we have off. Now you turn up and we can’t.” The only other occupant standing at the bar spoke. “Look, you’ve got Bill all shook up. Why don’t you come to the ball as well? There’ll be spare beds in the wool shed I’m sure,” he said. “The homestead is a few kilometres to the west. They have an airstrip.” I told them to close the pub, figuring I had just enough time to fly over before it got dark. I had a blast. People drove hundreds of kilometres for the annual races and ball. Even cattlemen from Alice Springs had driven down, so I didn’t feel like a complete stranger. During the evening, one young chap pestered me continuously for a ride in my aircraft. I finally relented

and told him to be at the airstrip at 6am. I didn’t expect him to be there. Arriving at the strip, I was surprised to find an eager passenger waiting for me. I strapped him in tightly as I briefed him as he was going to get the works. I threw us all over the sky, rolling and looping. After landing he thanked me profusely, told me it was his first ever flight and that he enjoyed it immensely. He got out and vomited. I left him to his heaving stomach. South of Oodnadatta, the engine developed a strange erratic vibration. I was not anxious, everything stayed in the green, but I flew high enough to find a landing area if it stopped. It didn’t, so after arriving at Parafield and landing after receiving a green light (the correct frequency was not among the six fitted to the VHF radio) I handed the aircraft over to a maintenance organisation. They were to complete an overhaul before the aircraft was sold. Then I filled in the dreaded DCA 225 incident report form and blamed the dust storm for failing my radio and heard nothing further. Next day someone phoned me and asked where the additional aircraft records were. I told them there were no others I knew of and had previously chided the owner regarding this. I heard that the propeller and magnetos had to be thrown away, along with other less critical parts. It’s hardly surprising I experienced vibration from the engine. The commercial flight back to Darwin was rather tame compared to my trip down. n Phil Lutz

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Australian PILOT Magazine Jun-Jul 2017  

The magazine of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia.

Australian PILOT Magazine Jun-Jul 2017  

The magazine of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia.