3WF Status Update

After a forced landing event a couple of weeks ago, 3WF is still waiting for critical inspections and decisions on the future of that plane. In any case, we’re likely looking at several more weeks at least, if not months before it can go back into service. As soon as there are more reliable insights and developments we will announce them here – thank you for your patience and understanding.

On a related note, when flying – especially in single engine aircraft – it is always a good idea to know how to make instant use of the NRST function on the MFD (and/or your EFB, if you have one) – remember private airports are perfectly acceptable options in an emergency, and can help save the day; there are lots of those in our region.
In addition to that, the GTN in 3WF can show a glide ring (just like the one available in Foreflight) that factors in current altitude and terrain to quickly identify the best direction (the “B” in the emergency ABC) to a good landing option as you keep best glide speed and start applying cockpit flow checks / emergency checklist.

AOPA Pilot Passport

You are encouraged to participate in AOPA’s recurring Pilot Passport program – have fun, expand your experience, and earn badges by exploring the airports in WA and beyond!

However, please do not take unnecessary risks by flying into airports with potentially insufficient runway length (a runway may be long enough to land, but takeoff distances usually require more runway), especially in combination with obstacles like trees or sharp rising terrain near the airport.

As for the surface, this is also a gentle reminder of Renter/Student Ops Manual regulation 5.6 – Runway Requirements – and 5.6E in particular: “Operations into any field other than paved surfaces (soft, gravel, sand, grass, etc.) are prohibited unless prior approval is obtained from the Director of Operations, Chief or Assistant Chief Flight Instructor.

Soft fields can hide a number of hazards like

  • potholes or rocks in the grass,
  • gravel causing very expensive prop damage
  • mud is the last thing you want to get stuck in during landing or trying to get out of on takeoff.

    These are all unnecessary problems, and therefore all soft-field exercises should be simulated on paved taxiways and runways .

Soft-field landing in our Twin Stars are not allowed at all; it’s not part of multi-engine training anyway.

Thank you for your understanding and helping keep our planes in the condition you wish to find them when you want to go fly!

Drinks in the cockpit

Two inflight engine shut downs in early 2020 have prompted Airbus and EASA to order changes to how liquids are consumed (or not) on the flight deck. A drink spilled on the center console of a Delta flight required a diversion, and an Asiana flight diverted after a similar spill. 

Hydration is important, especially on X/C flights – but needless to say, spilled drinks into or onto any cockpit components can lead to both inflight issues, major clean-up/MX costs, and aircraft downtimes.

Please be mindful only bring travel mugs or other containers that can be fully closed, and make sure passengers of yours do the same.

Non-carbonated water is still the best way stay hydrated on any flight.

C172S Tachometer: Normal operating limit

This is a reminder that the normal engine speed operating limit (top of green arc, representing ~75% BHP) changes with altitude.

See also POH:

  • Section 4: ENROUTE CLIMB and CRUISE
  • Section 5: CRUISE PERFORMANCE / RANGE / ENDURANCE
Top of normal operating RPM range (standard-day conditions):
2,500 RPM between sea level and 5,000′
– 2,600 RPM from 5,000′ – 10,000′
– 2,700 RPM above 10,000′