Saturday, March 18, 2006

A quick hop in light chop...

I'm going to be out of town for the next two weeks, flying back and forth across the country at the mercy of the disinterested and impersonal employees of various corporate operators of the big Greyhound Flying Germ Tubes known as airliners, so I took the opportunity this morning to fly in the way men were meant to fly: in control. Clear skies and great visibility, but a 10 knot crosswind from the left - my least favorite direction because of the way the wind combines with the torque of the engine to almost guarantee a big swerve to the left on takeoff. Minor detail, that, and in no way a contributor towards any diminishment of the pleasures of taking an RV up high for no more reason than to fly patterns in the sky.

Bolton was using runway 4, so I was taking off towards the end of the runway where Columbus State has their aviation maintenance school. School is out right now for spring break, and they just had their annual maintenance symposium, so all of the "lab" planes were parked out on the apron. I was able to get a pretty good snapshot as I went by:

As much as I'm enjoying spring break, I'm still really looking forward to the start of next quarter. Last quarter was fun, but there was a lot of book learning to do. We spent a bit more time in the lab in the last week or so working on a simple little sheet metal project, but I'm looking forward to the coming sheet metal class that will be far more involved, and should be 80 - 90% lab work. The classes are longer, five hours per night instead of the four from last quarter, but I anticipate the time going very quickly. I ordered myself a good rivet gun, having had the opportunity to do 30 or so practice rivets using the school rivet guns and deciding I'd prefer to have my own higher quality tool. Towards the end of last quarter I found that it's preferable to have you own tools whenever it makes sense to, and as some of the other students saw the value they started getting their own tools too. I figure the very expensive things like bending brakes and shears are provided by the sheet metal lab, but if there's a tool that I am going to need to have in my collection anyway, now is the time to get it.

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