The first time you see an AirCam, you do a double-take. The small twin engines and open cockpit are eye-catching, to say the least. Every pilot I’ve known who’s flown this unusual multiengine Experimental has fallen in love with it. AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Dave Hirschman has made a couple of ferry flights in them, and even when the temps require him to wear a flight suit, he can’t say enough about the perspective one gets from the front seat of the AirCam. Here’s a report he wrote up after ferrying one to Florida with Pilot Getaways co-founder John Kounis. and if you click this link you can watch a video of Hirschman flying the AirCam on another trek—this time from Florida to Minneapolis.—Jill W. Tallman
Posts Tagged ‘Florida’
Longtime AOPA members know this, but sometimes our Flight Training readers are shocked to learn that, yes, AOPA does give away airplanes from time to time. The airplane in this photo (shot by Mike Collins) is our 1963 Beechcraft Debonair B33. Sometimes called a “Baby Bonanza,” the Debonair is a great airplane all by itself, but once we’re finished the top-to-bottom refurbishment, the winner of this airplane will have a spectacular ride.
Editor at Large Tom Horne is in charge of the AOPA Debonair Sweeps project, and he has posted numerous updates on the work done so far on the Sweepstakes Blog, which you can read here. He also writes updates in AOPA Pilot; even if you don’t receive that magazine as part of your membership, you can still read those updates by selecting back issues on in the members-only section of AOPA Online.
Go to the Sweepstakes Home page for complete rules. If you’re a full AOPA member, you’re automatically entered to win.—Jill W. Tallman
The group photo of Swift pilots you see here was taken on November 4 to commemorate “World Domination: The Day of the Swift.” This friendly Facebook event was started by a Fort Myers, Fla.-based Swift owner who got to wondering one day how many Swifts were flying at the same time. He decided to see if he could get international interest among Swift owners to fly on the same day; thus the name “World Domination.” Perry Sisson asked participating pilots to email photos and updates; he estimates that 100 Swifts were flown on that one day in the United States, Canada, Brazil, and France.—Jill W. Tallman
AOPA’s 2010 Fun to Fly Sweepstakes was unlike any other sweepstakes airplane that preceded it. For one thing, it was brand new. For another, it was a Light Sport aircraft. The German-made Remos GX is unique in several other respects. You can remove the doors and fly it without them, exactly as you can in a Piper J-3 Cub. But the Remos can also do something you can’t do with a Cub. Its wings can be folded so that it can share a smaller hangar space or even trailered to an off-airport location, as AOPA did when we put it on display in downtown Frederick, Maryland. (Don’t believe it? Click the link and watch the video.) While AOPA was promoting the Fun to Fly Remos, it participated in a rally to Florida against a SMART car and even flew across the country so that it could go on display at AOPA Summit in Long Beach, Calif. In this shot, Chris Rose photographed Dave Hirschman flying the Remos over the Eastern Shore of Maryland.—Jill W. Tallman
Usually airshows such as Sun ‘n Fun and EAA Airventure in Oshkosh are dominated by news from aircraft manufacturers, GPS makers, and headset companies. Rarely is flight training ever discussed or featured. This year’s Sun ‘n Fun was different. There were a number of exciting announcements, including some from AOPA. Here’s a wrap-up:
When a simulator company announces the biggest nonairplane order of any company at Sun ‘n Fun, you take notice. Redbird is growing at a breakneck pace, and the company’s $1 million sale to a Brazilian customer was some of the top news of the show. With the simulated ATC program Parrot now shipping, look for more to come.
You probably know King Schools from the company’s video training. Now they are getting into the business of requalifying flight instructors. A new Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic will be aimed not at traditional content, such as FARs and aerodynamics, but rather on soft subjects, such as how to make sure your students pass the checkride, and how to get better at teaching risk management. I couldn’t be more excited about this. Flight instructors treat FIRCs much like students treat the written test. It’s a hurdle with little applicability to the real world. I’m hoping the King Schools course is a good step toward changing that.
Of course I had to throw in AOPA’s news. The association is doubling down on its efforts to grow the pilot population. We’re creating a center within the organization dedicated to the flight training initiative, and strengthening the pilot community. It’s a sign of the association’s commitment to fixing the problems we face.
As another part of the press conference, we announced the latest winners to the flight training scholarship program. There are some great stories here, so make sure you take a look and apply again later this year if you didn’t win this time.
Every pilot in the world, and many people who aren’t pilots, recognize the Piper J-3 Cub. Finally, someone who leads Piper Aircraft recognizes them as well. For far too long the company has ignored its flight training heritage and has not embraced its roots. People have a deep love and affection for the Cub, and while Piper has known enough to sell a few hats and T-shirts around the iconic brand, it’s done nothing to further capitalize on the good feelings the Cub brings about. For the first time in some years, Piper displayed a Cub at the show. No, don’t get too excited because it will be a cold day in product liability litigation before the company will manufacturer them again, but at least they are telling us they get it. And to top it off, new President Simon Caldecott said, “I want to get Piper heavy back into the training business.”
Didn’t win a flight training scholarship from AOPA? Try again with Sennheiser. The headset company is launching its Live Your Dream campaign, which provides eight $1,500 scholarships. Applications will open in May.
Did you go to Sun ‘n Fun this year? What did you think about the show? What was your impression for those who went for the first time?—Ian J. Twombly