Both Twin Stars have just received new Taxi and Landing light bulbs which are significantly brighter than the ones that were worn out and probably just about half as bright as when they were new. To help preserve the (not exactly cheap) bulbs, please generally turn off these lights as part of the cruise checks until approach/landing, with the following exceptions:
Local training flights: Keep the Taxi light on for all maneuvering
Alerting nearby traffic: Temporarily turn on the Landing light
The gearbox oil level of the CD-135 engines of our Twin Stars is inspected through a small round glass at the prop end of the engine. We have newer gearboxes on both DA42s: the oil level does not need to be at the top of the glass, but the level is correct when the oil covers (at least) half of the inspection window:
So if you see it at just about half, you’re good to fly!
All engine instruments need to be in the green prior to departure. On cooler days – or on the first flight of a day – in can take several minutes all the way into the runup phase before the oil temperature is in the green.
Please be patient, and wait that extra minute or so before taking off so you have a safe flight – treat any aircraft engine life your life depends on it.
You are encouraged to participate in AOPA’s recurring Pilot Passportprogram – 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 rocksin 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 simulatedon 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!
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 wateris still the best way stay hydrated on any flight.