Short trip before the weather changes – Beccles

Will .. my middle son,who is frustratingly waiting for a combination of aircraft and weather window to complete his qualifying cross country suggested we get the Ranger out and pop to his training base at Beccles for breakfast.

2 pax and full fuel does take her close to limits and the grass was pretty wet at Priory but the base is also pretty firm … even though it was pretty cold and damp he engine warm up was fairly quick .. to 50’ oil temp ….so backtrack to take the 19 southerly take off and then head for the Suffolk coast

Beccles asked for us to extend the landing and miss the grass as pretty waterlogged .. touching down on the tarmac … still need to practice turnarounds by unloading the tail and blipping throttle

Great welcome by super friendly team at Beccles and free coffee as flown in ..

Keeping an eye on Parachute Caravan and canopy drops before getting the “all canopies down” clearance … then Caravan out straight away and we have around 15 mins to get out and off before they drop again and circuit and departing have to wait … seems to work …

One of these nights. …

Not the Don Henley Eagles version … but an evening in the hangar .. sun long down … and a few things to do …

expect to get one , maybe two done … but … to come away with ALL done … great 😊

Now the permit is done … time to clean, tidy and get this little niggly things worked on …

2 more mini screen bolts to drill out and fit … Done

2nd inspection ring under port lower wing needs the proper ‘layered’ inspection sandwich of material with plastic ring in between… the existing hole is one of two in a section between root and first rib. So patching over, with an oversized panel may not easily take … and leave the rest of the panel … some 50cm x 60cm slack

The freshly cut ring, pre glued took really well the the fresh glue around the outer ring of the old inspection hole. As it was so cold in the barn the heat soon dissipated meaning I could lightly shrink it … beautifully tight .. so ready for the next layer of glue to be applied ready to seal in the inspection ring.

Then, my ongoing intermittent click in the radio … whilst working on he engine reinstall, I realised I had BOTH mag leads running almost parallel to 3 dedicated direct earth leads (secured to the engine block) .. one of which is probably the dedicated earth for the Trig radio and Transponder

The slight irony … is that retracing these mag leads … they end up running down an engine mount tube and then end up going vertically up the bulkhead and into a dedicated blue loom … So when I installed I obviously wanted these to stand out and BE separate.

It may makes things better … now diverse routed … but good to continue neatening the general wiring and routing

Flight test and LAA paperwork

Doing something different to the day job ….

Having spent a few days on Teams and QA bits and automation it’s the time to get out and do a full Test Flight Schedule … a 14 page document to be completed for the authorities after any ‘significant’ work … an engine refurbishment is classed as ‘significant’ …

so it’s powered, timed climbs, logging pressures and engine and exhaust temperatures and climb rates …

stalls .. ie basically closing the throttle and waiting for it to slow right down and stop flying ..3 of those …

then dive at full speed … then pull out (ideallly) … and put her sideways with crossed controls then let go of the aileron … do that both ways and log what happens … then setup for landing and put full power and climb away and then down to land

Now try all of that with a biro in your mouth whilst noting the facts and figures and effects … in an open cockpit …

All in a (exciting) days work 😊

Admission … flying takes a chunk of your brainpower as you focus on the various normal tasks …. Now add the slight overload of a flight test .. which raises the stakes a little …ie you have done ‘bits’ that, by their nature, need testing …. Then add the capture of all those measures like oil temp and press … CHT 1 and 2 and EGT 1 and 2 .. and ASI .. and cloud base of the extended climb … and lookout …. And omitted one thing ….., was that Tibenham below … oops no … it’s Old Buckenham …. The drift at 3,500 was appreciably more than I’d planned … they probably wondered who his loon was stalling and diving and turning around !

One of the ‘new’ post flight jobs I’ve got to get used to now in the U.K. … is wiping the muddy bottom post landing 😊 a nice job ..after a lovely curving approach down to Priory grass ..

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