Aircraft Structure Lift and Basic Aerodynamics

In order to understand the operation of the major components and subcomponents of an aircraft, it is important to understand basic aerodynamic concepts. This chapter briefly introduces aerodynamics; a more detailed explanation can be found in Chapter 4, Aerodynamics of Flight.

Four forces act upon an aircraft in relation to straight-and-level, un-accelerated flight. These forces are thrust, lift, weight, and drag. [Figure 2-1]

Thrust is the forward force produced by the power plant/propeller. It opposes or overcomes the force of drag. As a general rule, it is said to act parallel to the longitudinal axis. This is not always the case as explained later.

Weight is the combined load of the airplane itself, the crew, the fuel, and the cargo or baggage. Weight pulls the airplane downward because of the force of gravity. It opposes lift, and acts vertically downward through the airplane’s center of gravity (CG).

Lift opposes the downward force of weight, is produced by the dynamic effect of the air acting on the wing, and acts perpendicular to the flightpath through the wing’s center of lift.

An aircraft moves in three dimensions and is controlled by moving it about one or more of its axes. The longitudinal or roll axis extends through the aircraft from nose to tail, with the line passing through the CG. The lateral or pitch axis extends across the aircraft on a line through the wing tips, again passing through the CG. The vertical, or yaw, axis passes through the aircraft vertically, intersecting the CG. All control movements cause the aircraft to move around one or more of these axes, and allows for the control of the airplane in flight. [Figure 2-2]

One of the most significant components of aircraft design is CG. It is the specific point where the mass or weight of an aircraft may be said to center; that is, a point around which, if the aircraft could be suspended or balanced, the aircraft would remain relatively level. The position of the CG of an aircraft determines the stability of the aircraft in flight. As the CG moves rearward (towards the tail) the aircraft becomes more and more dynamically unstable. In aircraft with fuel tanks situated in front of the CG, it is important that the CG is set with the fuel tank empty. Otherwise, as the fuel is used, the

Drag is a rearward, retarding force, and is caused by disruption of airflow by the wing, fuselage, and other protruding objects. Drag opposes thrust, and acts rearward parallel to the relative wind. Aircraft becomes unstable. [Figure 2-3] The CG is computed during initial design and construction, and is further affected by the installation of onboard equipment, aircraft loading, and other factors.

Introduction to Aircraft Structure

An aircraft is a device that is used, or intended to be used, for flight, according to the current Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 1, Definitions and Abbreviations. Categories of aircraft for certification of airmen include airplane, rotorcraft, glider, lighter-than-air, powered-lift, powered parachute, and weight-shift control. 14 CFR part 1 also defines airplane as an engine-driven, fixed-wing aircraft that is supported in flight by the dynamic reaction of air against its wings. Another term, not yet codified in 14 CFR part 1, is advanced avionics aircraft, which refers to an aircraft that contains a global positioning system (GPS) navigation system with a moving map display, in conjunction with another system, such as an autopilot. This chapter provides a brief introduction to the structure of aircraft and uses an airplane for most illustrations. Light Sport Aircraft (LSA), such as weight-shift control, balloon, glider, powered parachute, and gyroplane have their own handbooks to include detailed information regarding aerodynamics and control.

Cockpit Management

After entering the airplane, the pilot should first ensure that all necessary equipment, documents, checklists, and navigation charts appropriate for the flight are on board. If a portable intercom, headsets, or a hand-held global positioning system (GPS) is used, the pilot is responsible for ensuring that the routing of wires and cables does not interfere with the motion or the operation of any control.

Regardless of what materials are to be used, they should be neatly arranged and organized in a manner that makes them readily available. The cockpit and cabin should be checked for articles that might be tossed about if turbulence is encountered. Loose items should be properly secured. All pilots should form the habit of good housekeeping.

The pilot must be able to see inside and outside references. If the range of motion of an adjustable seat is inadequate, cushions should be used to provide the proper seating position.

When the pilot is comfortably seated, the safety belt and shoulder harness (if installed) should be fastened and adjusted to a comfortably snug fit. The shoulder harness must be worn at least for the takeoff and landing, unless the pilot cannot reach or operate the controls with it fastened. The safety belt must be worn at all times when the pilot is seated at the controls.

If the seats are adjustable, it is important to ensure that the seat is locked in position. Accidents have occurred as the result of seat movement during acceleration or pitch attitude changes during takeoffs or landings. When the seat suddenly moves too close or too far away from the controls, the pilot may be unable to maintain control of the airplane.

14 CFR part 91 requires the pilot to ensure that each person on board is briefed on how to fasten and unfasten his/her safety belt and, if installed, shoulder harness. This should be accomplished before starting the engine, along with a passenger briefing on the proper use of safety equipment and exit information. Airplane manufacturers have printed briefing cards available, similar to those used by airlines, to supplement the pilot’s briefing.

FAA Safety Team (FAASTeam)

The FAA is dedicated to improving the safety of United States civilian aviation by conveying safety principles and practices through training, outreach, and education. The FAA Safety Team (FAASTeam) exemplifies this commitment. The FAASTeam has replaced the Aviation Safety Program (ASP), whose education of airmen on all types of safety subjects successfully reduced accidents. Its success led to its demise because the easy-to-fly accident causes have been addressed. To take aviation safety one step further, Flight Standards Service created the FAASTeam, which is devoted to reducing aircraft accidents by using a coordinated effort to focus resources on elusive accident causes.

Each of the FAA’s nine regions has a Regional FAASTeam Office dedicated to this new safety program and managed by the Regional FAASTeam Manager (RFM). The FAASTeam is “teaming” up with individuals and the aviation industry to create a unified effort against accidents and “tip” the safety culture in the right direction. To learn more about this effort to improve aviation safety, to take a course at their online learning center, or to join the FAASTeam, visit their web site at


Jat Tehnika not happy
UPDATED at 19.10

Jat Tehnika has extended its strike action and Jat’s flights have been cancelled until further notice. Jat’s only flight which will depart today is to Moscow. The flight has been made possible as it will be operated by Aviogenex’s Boeing B737-200 which is not serviced by Jat Tehnika. Talks are currently being held between Jat Airways, Jat Tehnika and the Serbian ministry for infrastructure.

Speaking on national television Jat Airways’ CEO said that the professionalism on behalf of Jat Tehnika’s technicians has been appalling this year. He said that the 1.100 employed in Tehnika are nowhere to be seen whenever Jat’s aircraft are are in the hangers. He also goes on to say that 2 aircraft could not depart for over a month when they received a new cabin interior because Jat Tehnika did not want to paint the airline’s livery on the aircraft. Talks between Jat Airways and Jat Tehnika resume at 19.00 (7pm). Radovanović said that Jat would be more than happy to form its own technical division although this would see the end of Jat Tehnika which only has 2 other customers, according to Radovanović.

Jat’s technical division, Jat Tehnika, has gone on strike. Jat Tehnika said the strike will last until 15.00 (3pm). As a result all of Jat’s flights until 15.00 have been cancelled. Jat’s technicians will go on strike because Jat Airawys owes its technical division millions of Euros. Jat blames Jat Tehnika for poor maintenance which caused a string of safety incidents this summer. Jat’s CEO, Srđan Radovanović says that he is upset with Jat Tehnika’s decision to go ahead with the strike and calls on passengers for understanding.

Yesterday evening, flights to Monastir, Skopje, Abu Dhabi and Larnaca were cancelled because they did not receive safety clearances from Jat Tehnika. Jat Airways was paralysed when 3 years ago trade unions from Jat Tehnika went on a month long strike. Many flights were cancelled with Jat forced to hire Tunisian technicians to somewhat normalise its schedule. The airline lost numerous amounts of passengers and suffered a huge financial hit. Jat’s management hopes that the government will resolve the problem. The Serbian government owns both Jat Airways and Jat Tehnika. Jat Tehnika was separated from Jat when the strike occurred a few years ago. Radovanović said that the separation was a bad move. Flights should be normalised today after 15.00 although the strike could be extended.

Updates will continue throughout the evening.

Engine and Propeller

The pilot should make note of the condition of the engine cowling. [Figure 2-8] If the cowling rivet heads reveal aluminum oxide residue, and chipped paint surrounding and radiating away from the cowling rivet heads, it is a sign that the rivets have been rotating until the holes have been elongated. If allowed to continue, the cowling may eventually separate from the airplane in flight.

Certain engine/propeller combinations require installation of a prop spinner for proper engine cooling. In these cases, the engine should not be operated unless the spinner is present and properly installed. The pilot should inspect the propeller spinner and spinner mounting plate for security of attachment, any signs of chafing of propeller blades, and defects such as cracking. A cracked spinner is unairworthy.

The propeller should be checked for nicks, cracks, pitting, corrosion, and security. The propeller hub should be checked for oil leaks, and the alternator/ generator drive belt should be checked for proper tension and signs of wear.

When inspecting inside the cowling, the pilot should look for signs of fuel dye which may indicate a fuel leak. The pilot should check for oil leaks, deterioration of oil lines, and to make certain that the oil cap, filter, oil cooler and drain plug are secure. The exhaust system should be checked for white stains caused by exhaust leaks at the cylinder head or cracks in the stacks. The heat muffs should also be checked for general condition and signs of cracks or leaks.

The air filter should be checked for condition and secure fit, as well as hydraulic lines for deterioration and/or leaks. The pilot should also check for loose or foreign objects inside the cowling such as bird nests, shop rags, and/or tools. All visible wires and lines should be checked for security and condition. And lastly, when the cowling is closed, the cowling fasteners should be checked for security.

Question time #72 resolved

Well done troops ! [Naki, ZK-CKE2 & Wayne]
It is indeed ZK-ARH. C/n 102 and ex G-ABYN and EI-ABU.
Rebuilt started at Mandeville and completed at Taieri.
Photos taken at Taieri 09-09-2005.

Aviation Safety Inspector (ASI)

The Aviation Safety Inspectors (ASIs) administer and enforce safety regulations and standards for the production, operation, maintenance, and/or modification of aircraft used in civil aviation. They also specialize in conducting inspections of various aspects of the aviation system, such as aircraft and parts manufacturing, aircraft operation, aircraft airworthiness, and cabin safety. ASIs must complete a training program at the FAA Academy in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, which includes airman evaluation, and pilot testing techniques and procedures. ASIs also receive extensive on-the-job training and recurrent training on a regular basis. The FAA has approximately 3,700 inspectors located in its FSDO offices. All questions concerning pilot certification (and/or requests for other aviation information or services) should be directed to the local FSDO.

UPDATED: Successful loss

Jat’s flight academy to be separated from the airline
Serbia’s Jat Airways has posted a half yearly loss of 14.9 million Euros. Despite being a significant figure, the results are better than expected and the year end loss is expected to total 21 million Euros, rather than the 25 million initially expected. Jat’s management believes that the airline will post a profit by the end of 2010. In order for the profit to be achieved the airline’s new business strategy suggests that 550 employees must leave the airline, which would leave approximately 950 people employed by Jat. 800 is the optimal amount of people needed to work for the airline, according to the managment. The strategy also suggests that Jat’s distinguished flight academy in Vršac, Jat’s agricultural aviation sector and the airline’s medicinal aviation sector should be separated from the airline itself. This news has not been welcomed by pilots.

Jat’s CEO, Srđan Radovanović has announced that Jat will be investing significant means into a new marketing campaign which will be unveiled to the public at the end of the year. He also said that he will “think about” the airline’s rebranding which was suggested by Jat’s now disgraced former CEO, Saša Vlaisavljević.


Jat’s technical division, Jat Tehnika, has gone on strike. The strike began at 15.00 (3pm) but all Jat flights departing this afternoon and evening have received a technical safety clearance, meaning that no flights will be affected today. For full news regarding his issue, visit the blog tomorrow.

Landing Gear, Tires, and Brakes

Tires should be inspected for proper inflation, as well as cuts, bruises, wear, bulges, imbedded foreign object, and deterioration. As a general rule, tires with cord showing, and those with cracked sidewalls are considered unairworthy.

Brakes and brake systems should be checked for rust and corrosion, loose nuts/bolts, alignment, brake pad wear/cracks, signs of hydraulic fluid leakage, and hydraulic line security/abrasion.

An examination of the nose gear should include the shimmy damper, which is painted white, and the torque link, which is painted red, for proper servicing and general condition. All landing gear shock struts should also be checked for proper inflation.

ZK-CNS crashed today.

Piper PA-32-260 Cherokee Six ZK-CNS , c/n 32-686 , crashed today just after take off from Great Barrier Island; two persons injured.
ZK-CNS was a product of 1966 and flew with the US registration of N3766W before being registered to Airwork (NZ) Ltd of Christchurch on 08-11-1966.
It went to the Southern Districts Aero Club at Gore from 12-07-67 but crashed at Big Bay on 07-1967 and was cancelled on 19-08-1968.
After rebuild it returned to the register with F H Chittock and E F Potter of Gore on 04-05-1970.
Some five opererators later it went to Great Barrier Airlines on30-04-1986.
In more recent times it has had the green tail end with a large stitchbird image on it.

Question time # 72.

What aircraft type do we have here then ?
What registration does this one have ?

Primary Locations of the FAA

The FAA headquarters are in Washington, D.C., and there are nine regional offices strategically located across the United States. The agency’s two largest field facilities are the Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center (MMAC) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and the William J. Hughes Technical Center (WJHTC) in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Home to FAA training and logistics services, the MMAC provides a number of aviation safety-related and business support services. The WJHTC is the premier aviation research and development and test and evaluation facility in the country. The center’s programs include testing and evaluation in ATC, communication, navigation, airports, aircraft safety, and security. Furthermore, the WJHTC is active in long-range development of innovative aviation systems and concepts, development of new ATC equipment and software, and modification of existing systems and procedures.

Field Offices

Flight Standards Service

Within the FAA, the Flight Standards Service promotes safe air transportation by setting the standards for certification and oversight of airmen, air operators, air agencies, and designees. It also promotes safety of flight of civil aircraft and air commerce by:

• Accomplishing certification, inspection, surveillance, investigation, and enforcement.
• Setting regulations and standards.
• Managing the system for registration of civil aircraft and all airmen records.

The focus of interaction between Flight Standards Service and the aviation community/general public is the Flight Standards District Office (FSDO).

Flight Standards District Office (FSDO)

The FAA has approximately 130 FSDOs. [Figure 1-13] These offices provide information and services for the aviation community. FSDO phone numbers are listed in the telephone directory under Government Offices, DOT, and FAA. Another convenient method of finding a local office is to use the FSDO locator available at:

In addition to accident investigation and the enforcement of aviation regulations, the FSDO is also responsible for the certification and surveillance of air carriers, air operators; flight schools/training centers, and airmen including pilots and flight instructors. Each FSDO is staffed by Aviation Safety Inspectors (ASIs) who play a key role in making the nation’s aviation system safe.

Another expansion

Split Airport passenger terminal
After Dubrovnik, another airport in Croatia is about to be expanded. The CEO of Split Airport Lukša Novak has signed an agreement with Zagorje Tehnobeton general director Miroslav Bunić for the enlargement of the airport apron. The addition of an additional 35.000 square meters will cost around 68 million Kunas or 9.32 million Euros. Construction should be complete by the start of the 2011 tourist season.

Novak said that the enlargement of the apron would enable the airport to deal with aircraft in a safer and more efficient manner. Split Airport will be in full compliance with international regulations regarding aircraft parking after the enlargement. It will also allow the airport to handle more aircraft, which is vital during the tourist season. Novak said the project would be wholly financed by the airport. Construction company Zagorje Tehnobeton has been awarded the contract for the work in competition with six other firms. Construction should start in October.

In 2008, Split Airport handled 1.203.778 passengers. This year the airport has been reporting a significant passenger decline. Split Airport is the second largest, in term of passenger numbers, in Croatia, after Zagreb. The next phase of Split Airport’s expansion is expected to begin in 2012 when a construction of a new terminal is scheduled.

Fuel and Oil

Particular attention should be paid to the fuel quantity, type and grade, and quality. [Figure 2-7] Many fuel tanks are very sensitive to airplane attitude when attempting to fuel for maximum capacity. Nosewheel strut extension, both high as well as low, can significantly alter the attitude, and therefore the fuel capacity. The airplane attitude can also be affected laterally by a ramp that slopes, leaving one wing slightly higher than another. Always confirm the fuel quantity indicated on the fuel gauges by visually inspecting the level of each tank.

The type, grade, and color of fuel are critical to safe operation. The only widely available aviation gasoline (AVGAS) grade in the United States is low-lead 100-octane, or 100LL. AVGAS is dyed for easy recognition of its grade and has a familiar gasoline scent. Jet-A, or jet fuel, is a kerosene-based fuel for turbine powered airplanes. It has disastrous consequences when inadvertently introduced into reciprocating airplane engines. The piston engine operating on jet fuel may start, run, and power the airplane, but will fail because the engine has been destroyed from detonation.

Jet fuel has a distinctive kerosene scent and is oily to the touch when rubbed between fingers. Jet fuel is clear or straw colored, although it may appear dyed when mixed in a tank containing AVGAS. When a few drops of AVGAS are placed upon white paper, they evaporate quickly and leave just a trace of dye. In comparison, jet fuel is slower to evaporate and leaves an oily smudge. Jet fuel refueling trucks and dispensing equipment are marked with JET-A placards in white letters on a black background. Prudent pilots will supervise fueling to ensure that the correct tanks are filled with the right quantity, type, and grade of fuel. The pilot should always ensure that the fuel caps have been securely replaced following each fueling.

Engines certificated for grades 80/87 or 91/96 AVGAS will run satisfactorily on 100LL. The reverse is not true. Fuel of a lower grade/octane, if found, should never be substituted for a required higher grade. Detonation will severely damage the engine in a very short period of time.

Automotive gasoline is sometimes used as a substitute fuel in certain airplanes. Its use is acceptable only when the particular airplane has been issued a supplemental type certificate (STC) to both the airframe and engine allowing its use.

Checking for water and other sediment contamination is a key preflight element. Water tends to accumulate in fuel tanks from condensation, particularly in partially filled tanks. Because water is heavier than fuel, it tends to collect in the low points of the fuel system. Water can also be introduced into the fuel system from deteriorated gas cap seals exposed to rain, or from the supplier’s storage tanks and delivery vehicles. Sediment contamination can arise from dust and dirt entering the tanks during refueling, or from deteriorating rubber fuel tanks or tank sealant.

The best preventive measure is to minimize the opportunity for water to condense in the tanks. If possible, the fuel tanks should be completely filled with the proper grade of fuel after each flight, or at least filled after the last flight of the day. The more fuel there is in the tanks, the less opportunity for condensation to occur. Keeping fuel tanks filled is also the best way to slow the aging of rubber fuel tanks and tank sealant.

Sufficient fuel should be drained from the fuel strainer quick drain and from each fuel tank sump to check for fuel grade/color, water, dirt, and smell. If water is present, it will usually be in bead-like droplets, different in color (usually clear, sometimes muddy), in the bottom of the sample. In extreme cases, do not overlook the possibility that the entire sample, particularly a small sample, is water. If water is found in the first fuel sample, further samples should be taken until no water appears. Significant and/or consistent water or sediment contamination are grounds for further investigation by qualified maintenance personnel. Each fuel tank sump should be drained during preflight and after refueling.

The fuel tank vent is an important part of a preflight inspection. Unless outside air is able to enter the tank as fuel is drawn out, the eventual result will be fuel gauge malfunction and/or fuel starvation. During the preflight inspection, the pilot should be alert for any signs of vent tubing damage, as well as vent blockage. A functional check of the fuel vent system can be done simply by opening the fuel cap. If there is a rush of air when the fuel tank cap is cracked, there could be a serious problem with the vent system.

The oil level should be checked during each preflight and rechecked with each refueling. Reciprocating airplane engines can be expected to consume a small amount of oil during normal operation. If the consumption grows or suddenly changes, qualified maintenance personnel should investigate. If line service personnel add oil to the engine, the pilot should ensure that the oil cap has been securely replaced.

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)

The FAA is empowered by regulations to promote aviation safety and establish safety standards for civil aviation. The FAA achieves these objectives under the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), which is the codification of the general and permanent rules published by the executive departments and agencies of the United States Government. The regulations are divided into 50 different codes, called Titles that represent broad areas subject to Federal regulation. FAA regulations are listed under Title 14, Aeronautics and Space, which encompasses all aspects of civil aviation from how to earn a pilot’s certificate to maintenance of an aircraft.

Title 14 CFR Chapter 1, Federal Aviation Administration, is broken down into subchapters A through N as illustrated in Figure 1-12.

For the pilot, certain parts of 14 CFR are more relevant than others. During flight training, it is helpful for the pilot to become familiar with the parts and subparts that relate to flight training and pilot certification. For instance, 14 CFR part 61 pertains to the certification of pilots, flight instructors, and ground instructors. It also defines the eligibility, aeronautical knowledge, flight proficiency, as well as training and testing requirements for each type of pilot certificate issued. 14 CFR part 91 provides guidance in the areas of general flight rules, visual flight rules (VFR), and instrument flight rules (IFR), while 14 CFR part 43 covers aircraft maintenance, preventive maintenance, rebuilding, and alterations.

Thomson to Tivat

Soon in Tivat
The world’s largest charter airline, the UK based Thomson Airways, will commence seasonal services to Tivat from London-Gatwick Airport on May 5, 2010. The airline will be offering holiday packages to Montenegro, as well as selling individual airline tickets. The new arrival could give a big boost to the Montenegrin tourism industry. Packages to Montenegro, with Thomson, can already be booked. The flights will run from May 5 until October 6.

Thomson will be in direct competition with Montenegro Airlines on this service, although the Montenegrin carrier can relax as Thomson’s tickets will only be slightly cheaper. Thomson is no stranger to the EX-YU region, operating flights to the Croatian coast during the summer. The airline also at one time operated winter flights to Niš in Serbia.

Meanwhile, in the first 8 months of the year, a total of 416.076 passengers used Tivat Airport, which is 4.4% less when compared to the same period last year. A total of 3.186 aircraft landed at Tivat Airport from January until the end of August.

Charlie Drapers fly in 27-09-2009.

A general view down the aircraft line at Charlie Drapper''s strip just to the north of Darfield.
This was a very low key and relaxed but well run fly in plus a gathering of vintage and classic motor vehicles.
I noted 23 aircraft on site.
Above is the Richard Royds Auster Mk5 ZK-ARR , c/n 1364 . After RAF service this Auster went to Singapore followed by a lengthy period in Australia. It arrived in NZ in about August of 1997.
Another ex RAF aircraft is the De Havilland DH82A Tiger Moth ZK-BCO , c/n 83420 imported into NZ in 1953. Currently owned by the BCO Syndicate and based at Swannanoa on the Des Lines strip.
Piper PA-18-150 ZK-BNX , c/n 18-5453 flown in by Pat Scotter and Ron Smith from Rangiora.
The host's aircraft is this Beagle Auster A109 Airdale ZK-CCW , c/n B528 , which was assembled in the Wellington Aero Clubs hangar by Ivan East & crew in late 1962. Charlie acquired this aircraft mid 2000 and has based it on his farm since then.
All part of the fun. Des Lines topping up before heading off in Tiger ZK-BCO.
The G & N Partnership Cessna 172M Skyhawk ZK-DHQ , c/n 61103 , from up the Rakaia Gorge. [G = Gerald & N = Noel].
Cessna A185F Skywagon ZK-DPF , c/n 02421 , which has been with the Fechney family since new in late 1974.
Jodel D.11 ZK-EDG , c/n AACA/17/2. Built by Jack Inder mid 1970's and currently listed to Tony Den Haan.
Cameron V65 Viva balloon ZK-FBO , c/n 1854 , set off about mid afternoon.
Piper PA-28-180 Cherokee C ZK-FSP , c/n 28-2818 flown in by Pam Collings from Forest Field.
Robinson R44 Raven 11 ZK-HTZ2 , c/n 10083 of Darfield Helicopters (Peter Morrison) during one of its comings and goings.
Above Alastair Millar's Zenair CH701 Stol ZK-KJR , c/n 7-3854 , in its recent non white paint scheme.
Another Zenair CH701 Stol was Stew Bufton's ZK-LSB , c/n 6089.
Cessna R172K Hawk XP ZK-MAV , c/n 2153 , being pushed aloft by the 25m wing span Schleicher ASH-25 ZK-GTF , c/n 25104 , driven by Mike Oakley. Mike arrived from Hororata, did two low flypasts and landed at the narrow northern end of the strip - greatly impressing the cloud near the fenceline. After release from this tow he put on a short aerobatic display (limited by the cloud base) demonstrating the wing flex on these ASH25's..
A better view of the tow plane Cessna R172K Hawk XP ZK-MAV. Interesting history for this aircraft. Currently listed to the Stella Syndicate it has been a work of love by Mike Chilton.
Gordon Whale arrived in his Cessna 172P ZK-SGW , c/n 74407. A reasonably recent import, reaching the register on 30-07-08. A rare sighting for me.
Harvard 7660 came in for a while. Officially known as ZK-XSA [ex South Africa]. This North American Harvard 3* has the c/n of 78-6647 and was imported by Graham Orphan & John Kelly in 1996. It moved to the Harvard 7660 Syndicate on 16-02-2000.
A late arrival was the Yak 55M ZK-YKV , c/n 920402.

A great laid back day which Charlie will almost certainly repeat.

Outer Wing Surfaces and Tail Section

The pilot should inspect for any signs of deterioration, distortion, and loose or missing rivets or screws, especially in the area where the outer skin attaches to the airplane structure. [Figure 2-6] The pilot should look along the wing spar rivet line—from the wingtip to the fuselage—for skin distortion. Any ripples and/or waves may be an indication of internal damage or failure.

Loose or sheared aluminum rivets may be identified by the presence of black oxide which forms rapidly when the rivet works free in its hole. Pressure applied to the skin adjacent to the rivet head will help verify the loosened condition of the rivet.

When examining the outer wing surface, it should be remembered that any damage, distortion, or malformation of the wing leading edge renders the airplane unairworthy. Serious dents in the leading edge, and disrepair of items such as stall strips, and deicer boots can cause the airplane to be aerodynamically unsound. Also, special care should be taken when examining the wingtips. Airplane wingtips are usually fiberglass. They are easily damaged and subject to cracking. The pilot should look at stop drilled cracks for evidence of crack progression, which can, under some circumstances, lead to in-flight failure of the wingtip.
The pilot should remember that fuel stains anywhere on the wing warrant further investigation—no matter how old the stains appear to be. Fuel stains are a sign of probable fuel leakage. On airplanes equipped with integral fuel tanks, evidence of fuel leakage can be found along rivet lines along the underside of the wing.

West Melton today [27-09-2009].

This Sundays drive took me to the West Melton airfield. This field belongs to the Canterbury Aero Club but has several private aircraft based there.
Above is the Denney Kitfox IV ZK-KIV , c/n 1642 , of Russel Ainsworth.
Peter W Harland's initials make up the registration for his Tecnam P2002 Sierra ZK-PWH , c/n 142 . It resides in the same hangar as the Kitfox.
My main reason for calling in was to see the Australian Aircraft Hornet STOL ZK-JCM , c/n 023. Again the registration is the initials of its owner Jock C Montgomery. It was flying off its final hour of testing today.
Test pilot being Evan Belworthy. Evan flew across the river from his ranch in his Clutton Fred ZK-FRD, seen in the background above.
The Hornet has gained some bigger wheels since it appeared in an earlier blog.

Hurricane Mk 11A ZK-TPK Auction - Last Chance!

Today someone kindly gave me this catalogue for the auction of military and aviation collectables to be conducted by Bonhams and Goodman in Melbourne at 6pm today (Sunday 27 September 2009).

As this is 9pm New Zealand time you all still have time to get a last minute bid in! Yeah Right! For your reference it is Lot Number 29.

(Actually it is too late for you all as I note that bids should be submitted no later than the day prior to the sale - I don't quite know how this aligns with the auction process?).

Question time #71 resolved


You night owls are too good. I will have to rat around and find something harder.

It is indeed the Ferrymead Museums nose section of Lockheed L188 Electra ZK-TEA , c/n was 2005.

It arrived in Auckland on 19-11-1959 to become listed with TEAL on the 23rd as ZK-TEA. The registration ZK-BMP was initially pencilled in for this aircraft.

Being the first of five it was named "Aotearoa".

It transferred to Air New Zealand on 01-04-1966 and was cancelled from our register on 01-06-1972 to become N31231 followed by LN-FOI with Fred Olsen Air Transport. It was withdrawn and stored at Coventry in about 2000.

The nose section was acquired by Ferrymead and arrived on 22-07-06.

Well done Matt.

I will be going fishing this afternoon. So if you care to flick me your snail mail address to I will mail you one.
If per chance you are at Charlie Drapers strip today - the Blue Bus will be in attendance.

The Airline Deregulation Act of 1978

Until 1978, the CAB regulated many areas of commercial aviation such as fares, routes, and schedules. The Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, however, removed many of these controls, thus changing the face of civil aviation in the United States. After deregulation, unfettered free competition ushered in a new era in passenger air travel.

The CAB had three main functions: to award routes to airlines, to limit the entry of air carriers into new markets, and to regulate fares for passengers. Much of the established practices of commercial passenger travel within the United States went back to the policies of Walter Folger Brown, the United States Postmaster General during the administration of President Herbert Hoover. Brown had changed the mail payments system to encourage the manufacture of passenger aircraft instead of mail-carrying aircraft. His influence was crucial in awarding contracts and helped create four major domestic airlines: United, American, Eastern, and Transcontinental and Western Air (TWA). Similarly, Brown had also helped give Pan American a monopoly on international routes.

The push to deregulate, or at least to reform the existing laws governing passenger carriers, was accelerated by President Jimmy Carter, who appointed economist and former professor Alfred Kahn, a vocal supporter of deregulation, to head the CAB. A second force to deregulate emerged from abroad. In 1977, Freddie Laker, a British entrepreneur who owned Laker Airways, created the Sky train service, which offered extraordinarily cheap fares for transatlantic flights. Larker’s offerings coincided with a boom in low-cost domestic flights as the CAB eased some limitations on charter flights, i.e., flights offered by companies that do not actually own planes but leased them from the major airlines. The big air carriers responded by proposing their own lower fares. For example, American Airlines, the country’s second largest airline, obtained CAB approval for “SuperSaver” tickets.
All of these events proved to be favorable for large-scale deregulation. In November 1977, Congress formally deregulated air cargo. In late 1978, Congress passed the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, legislation that had been principally authored by Senators Edward Kennedy and Howard Cannon. [Figure 1-11] There was stiff opposition to the bill—from the major airlines who feared free competition, from labor unions who feared nonunion employees, and from safety advocates who feared that safety would be sacrificed. Public support was, however, strong enough to pass the act. The act appeased the major airlines by offering generous subsidies and it pleased workers by offering high unemployment benefits if they lost their jobs as a result. The most important effect of the act, whose laws were slowly phased in, was on the passenger market. For the first time in 40 years, airlines could enter the market or (from 1981) expand their routes as they saw it. Airlines (from 1982) also had full freedom to set their fares. In 1984, the CAB was finally abolished since its primary duty of regulating the airline industry was no longer necessary.

Question time # 71

Another nosey question.
What ?
Where ?
Why ?
& anything else you care to mention !

More About Sindlinger Hurricane ZK-VYX

In February 2009 I posted an article on the blog about the Sindlinger Hurricane ZK-VYX and its previous identity ZK-FVW. In that post I asked if anyone had any further information on this interesting aircraft.

Now Blue Bus has forwarded a web link to an article that has been written by Bob Gibson who returned the aircraft to flying condition and currently flies it (photographed above at the 2009 SAANZ flyin at Ashburton). This article gives a clear history of the aircraft and its Mitsubishi V6 motor. The link is

More from NZCH west side 26-09-09.

It is not every day that we see an out of towner microlight at Christchurch. But here we have Jabiru SP ZK-WBA , c/n 449 , from the RNZAF Base Woodbourne Aviation Sports Club on the tie downs.
The aircraft in the background is the Taylorcraft 20 Ranchwagon ZK-BQM.
More rotary wing sightings. Above is the Aerospatiale AS350BA Squirrel ZK-HKW4 , c/n 1360 , of Way To Go Heliservices on the Pacific Aircraft Services grass patch. This Squirrel operated as ZK-HDV2 between 1990 and 1993 before being exported to Australia. It returned to NZ as ZK-HKW on 28-06-02.
The Rick Lucas Helicopters Robinson R44 Raven 11 ZK-HGU3 , c/n 11259. This helicopter was delivered new to Endurance Fishing Co Ltd of Nelson in a blue colour scheme and only joined Helipro on 30-07-2009.
In at Heli Maintenance for a spot of servicing was the MD 369E ZK-HCC5 . c/n 0220E , of Mountain Helicopters of Fox Glacier.

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