Saturday, April 30, 2005


Photo Update Of A Couple Of Cold Days!!!!

I have recently found some more photos pertaining to one of my posts. I will mark the pictures NEW, and insert them in sequence in the previous post. To see the new photos and re-read the previous post, here is the link:

Bob Polinuk: "To The Rescue" -New Photos!!

(it is amazing what you can accomplish in -30*C weather!)


Steve's Video Of The Day: Bush-Flying the Boeing 747!!

I remember one time I was doing a Multi "Pilot Proficiency Check" (PPC) on Piper PA-31, C-FBKK, with a Transport Canada Inspector named Art Lashbrook. I had the usual "ride jitters", and figured I had done OK on the ride, but you never know until the end. I did the last emergency procedures, a single-engine flapless approach, and landed, and turned off the runway to taxi to the ramp at Winnipeg International Airport. Art didn't say much, until he asked me "Do you have a lot of 'float' time?" "Yes", I replied, "a lot." Crap, it must show. Maybe my "circuits" weren't square, or some other bad habit was glaring. "Yes, I thought so," Art said. I took the bait. "Why did you ask me that?" I queried. Art's reply was "I have done numerous, numerous PPC rides, in many different types of airplanes. I can always tell when a pilot has a lot of float time, because float pilots have much "smoother" flying skills than other pilots with equivalent time, but with none on floats." Hey, that was a compliment! Unusual coming from a Government Inspector!! I found out later Art himself had lots of float time, lots on Beech 18s! Anyway, from what I have witnessed, it is true, due to the environment you are forced to fly and deal with continually. I passed the ride, and said good-bye to Art. This was many years ago, but I understand Art still does Beech 18 PPC rides on floats to this day in the Red Lake-Kenora-Fort Frances areas!

The reason I wrote the above little "blurb" was just to explain that tremendous skills are learned flying in the bush due to the environment. Pacific Western Airlines used to hire high-time coastal B.C. float pilots to fly the Boeing 737s, and they were known in the industry as "The Cowboys". So, I figure the spectacle you will soon witness must have been perpetrated by a high-time "bush" driver. Anybody that can handle a Boeing 747 in this manner, knows how to fly "by the seat of his pants"!!

VIDEO! -Bush-Flying the Boeing 747!!

Daughter "Monger" (14 yrs. old now) aboard Piper PA-31, C-FBKK, a veteran of many a pilot's hands on her yoke. BKK was the location where Art gave Steve a fine compliment............. Posted by Hello

Beech 18 C-FSFH taxis to the dock on one engine at Little Grand Rapids, Manitoba.......... Posted by Hello

Beech 18 C-FSFH, shut down, gliding to the dock.......... Posted by Hello

A Beech 18 is a beautiful airplane, and a tremendous environment and training tool for pilots who end up with major airlines. Art has lots of time on Beech 18s, and still does check-rides to this day................. Posted by Hello

Top-notch pilot and Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Gary Polinuk emerges from Beech 18 C-FSFH, and is soon swarmed by a mob of adoring females............. Posted by Hello

Mini-airliner on floats, Beech 18 C-FSFH has a striking, beautiful profile.......... Posted by Hello

Friday, April 29, 2005


"Dump" The Shoot-Out In Medal Games!!

Canada's National Women's Hockey Team sure was burned this year at the 2005 IIHF World Women's Hockey Championship. Besides not losing a game before the stupid shoot-out in the Final, they went the whole tournament without being scored on in regulation time, and the one OT period. Therefore, get rid of the shoot-out and let them decide "Medal Games" only in "Sudden-Death" overtime!!!

2005 Women's World Championships

Linkoping and Norrkoping, Sweden April 2-9, 2005

Group A
Canada 3 3 0 0 35 0 6
Sweden 3 2 1 0 8 12 4
Russia 3 0 2 1 3 17 1
Kazakhstan 3 0 2 1 3 20 1

Group B
USA 3 3 0 0 23 3 6
Finland 3 2 1 0 11 10 4
China 3 0 2 1 6 16 1
Germany 3 0 2 1 4 15 1

Canada 3, Finland 0
USA 4, Sweden 1

Bronze: Sweden 5, Finland 2

Gold: USA 1, Canada 0 (20 min OT, then Shoot-out)

Qualifying round;
China 3, Kazakhstan 0
Germany 2, Russia 1

5th place
Germany 3, China 0

7th place
Kazakhstan 2, Russia 1


Today In Aviation History

APRIL 29, 1975

Operation Frequent Wind begins. The North Vietnamese were on the outskirts of Saigon, so US Ambassador Graham Martin ordered the start of Frequent Wind. In 19 hours, 81 helicopters carried more than 1000 US nationals and almost 6000 Vietnamese to aircraft carriers offshore. The cue to evacuate was a radio announcement that the temperature in Saigon was "105 degrees and rising," which was followed by Bing Crosby's "White Christmas." At 07:53 AM the next day, the last helicopter lifted off of the roof of the American Embassy and headed out to sea. Later that morning, North Vietnamese tanks crashed through the gates of the Presidential Palace. The Vietnam War was over.

(speakers on!)

VIDEO! -Fall of Saigon! Final Hours!

VIDEO! -Evacuation!

VIDEO! -The Fate of many post-evacuation choppers!


Steve's Video Of The Day: Self-Taught "Chopper" Pilot

The physical act of flying is not the hardest skill on earth to master, as there are a lot of "idiots" that can fly. Proper decision-making is a much more valuable skill, and a lot of people are lacking it.

Self-Taught "Chopper" Pilot

Thursday, April 28, 2005


A Day In My Life..........

4:30 AM. Damn. Awake again. My "Bush Pilot alarm clock" had gone off again, but I didn't have to get up that early today. Got up, took a "whizz", had a glass of skim milk, and it was back to the "rack". I had been out with good friends the night previous, and "indulged", and enjoyed myself, but my head was clear. 6:00 AM. Awake again, this time for good. Outside on the ground, "SNOW". Not a lot, but the whole ground is covered. It is still freezing every night. Today I wanted to take our Cessna 185, C-GFVZ across Lake Winnipeg to be put on floats, but it was still snowing and blowing, so I never panicked to go early. I was also to take my friend Rick, who has a C-185, as it was at our hangar in Silver Falls, having been put on floats for him. I spoke with him around 8:00 AM, and I told him I would check weather. I called him later, and told him we would go after lunch, as the forecast was calling for the weather to improve about 1:00 PM. I went to the airport early and prepped the plane and "ran it up".

Rick arrived after lunch, and we were airborne about 1:30 PM. We headed south along Lake Winnipeg, as we would go around the lake, not cross it on wheels. We enjoyed the scenery, when we could see anything for the snow showers, and made Silver Falls. The "hangar boys" were putting Otter C-GBTU on floats, my airplane, and I took some pics. Rick and I headed for the river to find his airplane, and put it in the water. Steve Gaffray was driving the old International "Cornbinder" plane-launcher, and soon C-GULA was in the water.

We chatted and told jokes for an hour, and Rick and I were airborne, with Rick flying. Back into the snow-showers. Old C-GULA ran like a top, and we made it back to Riverton. Rick's landing on the Icelandic River didn't compress my spine, but it was "firm". I'm sure he will be doing "greasers" within no time. Made it home safe and sound, and headed to the town Minor Hockey "windup". Enjoyed myself, and now I type away sucking a "whiskey and water". What a life! (and soon to get busier!!)

C-GFVZ awaits Rick and I to fly her to Silver Falls for float change-over........... Posted by Hello

Poor Piper Aztec C-GOXI. After her maiden "shakedown" this spring, flown by local pilot and owner Craig, her prop touched the ground due to her gear sinking in soft ground, so her prop had to be repaired, and her engine had to come off for inspection......... Posted by Hello

South of Gimli is "Siglavik", an imaginative development on Lake Winnipeg............ Posted by Hello

Arriving in Silver Falls, we are greeted by the "skidder" and Walter turbine Otter C-FIOF........ Posted by Hello

A "skidder" and an "Otter"....... Posted by Hello

Beautiful airplane, ready for the water...... Posted by Hello

Putting BTU on floats........... Posted by Hello

Head-on view............. Posted by Hello

The "hangar boys" at work.......... Posted by Hello

The nose of "Walter" BTU........... Posted by Hello

Launching ULA........... Posted by Hello

Rick handling ULA........... Posted by Hello

The International "plane-launcher", designed and manufactured by mentors and "Skunk Works" wizards Art and Don Gaffray............ Posted by Hello

"Polish" Otter HYB ready for work......... Posted by Hello

Nice angle view of HYB........... Posted by Hello

View of lake Winnipeg on the ride home from C-185 ULA.......... Posted by Hello

Still snow on Hecla Island sand-bar.......... Posted by Hello

View from ULA arriving for landing on the Icelandic River at Riverton, home.......... just another day in my life!!! Till next time,.......... Posted by Hello


Steve's Video Of The Day: Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress Suffering Battle Damage

The Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress was the most important aircraft used by Bomber Command in WWII to smash the Nazis. Once Germany was "on the ropes", the B-17 kept pummelling them, like a good prize-fighter. I still love the movie 12 O'Clock High starring Gregory Peck as General Savage, and then the series made after with Robert Lansing in the title role. Anyway, the men who crewed the B-17s were "Real Men Flying Real Airplanes". My hat is off to them. They could take a lot of abuse and keep flying!

(Video shot from a German fighter. Damn, I would hate to be the tail-gunner.....!)

Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress Suffering Battle Damage

(and she kept flying, even with all the "parts" abandoning her.....!)

The Boeing B-17G "Flying Fortress"

Boeing Company, Seattle, Washington

B-17G Flying Fortress

Ten; -Pilot, Co-pilot, Navigator, Bombardier, Flight Engineer (top turret gunner), Radio Operator, 2 Waist Gunners, Tail Gunner and Ball Turret Gunner

The B-17G is powered by four 1,200-horsepower Wright Cyclone Model R-1820-97 engines. These engines are nine cylinder, radial, air-cooled type with a 16:9 gear ratio. The propellers are three-bladed Hamilton Standard propellers, 11 feet, 7 inches in diameter.

Basic Empty Weight 34,000 lbs.
Gross Weight (Wartime) 65,500 lbs.

1,700 gallons

1,850 miles. Range could be extended when equipped with "Tokyo Tanks" which provided a total capacity of 3,630 gallons.

103 feet, 9 inches

74 feet, 4 inches

19 feet, 1 inch

35,600 feet

Thirteen Browning M-2 .50 caliber machine guns. Fire rate approximately 13 rounds per second. No gun on a B-17 carried more than one minute's supply of ammunition.

Depending on types of bombs, maximum normal load could go to 8,000 lbs. If B-17 was fitted with special external racks, maximum normal short-range bomb load could go as high as 17,600 lbs.

12,732. Production peaked at 16 airplanes a day in April 1944. Today there are about a dozen B-17's still flying.

Maximum 300 mph. at 30,000 ft.
Maximum continuous 263 mph. at 25,000 ft.
Cruising speed 170 mph.
Landing 74 mph.
Rate of Climb 37 minutes to 20,000 ft

A little known fact is that the "Polish Otter" is powered by a Pezetel M18 1820 CI radial engine, which is actually a copy of the Wright 1820 CI Cyclone engine, the engines on the B-17, and is made under license in Poland and Russia to this day.......  Posted by Hello