Globe with the words Around the Pattern cured around the top half.

Aviation Stories for June 10, 2011


This week was another sparse week for my type of links. As a matter of fact I didn’t find a single one that I felt like passing along here. I’m not really into arguing about whether or not N-numbers of business jets should be tracked.

I did find an interesting conversation about CFI compensation on Bruce Landsberg’s blog at the AOPA Air Safety Institute, but it’s more directed toward those of you who are CFIs.

There was also an interesting segment on The Aviators about whether or not a private pilot could land an airliner in an emergency.

But that was about all I found this week. On the other hand, there was plenty going on out at the Reno-Stead Airport this week.


It seems that another group is attempting to make a film about the Reno Air Races. This one will be an IMAX movie, titled Air Racers, Forces of Flight 3D is supposed to be released in September of this year – hmmm, same time as the races. It would be great to premier it here in Reno during the races, but Reno doesn’t, to my knowledge, have an IMAX theater.

The attempt at a movie about the Races was Thunder Over Reno. I won’t say it was bad, but I got up and walked out – and I was watching a DVD on my computer…

Here are some photos and a couple of film clips from the week’s activities.

Reno Air Racer Strega at Stead Airport.

There were a few Reno racers at the airport for the filming and an air show act of three. This is “Strega”, the unlimited champion for the past three years.



Reno Air Racer Jelly Belly at Stead Airport.

This is the “Jelly Belly” Reno Air Racer. It’s pretty obvious who their sponsor is. The ‘every day’ name of the plane is “Sparky,” an off-handed reference to previous problems with landing gear extension.


P-47 stopping for fuel at Reno-Stead Airport.

This bad boy stopped in earlier in the week for fuel. I didn’t get a chance to talk to the pilot.

Hearing a big-throated radial in the pattern is a nice diversion from whatever you happen to be doing in the hangar.


This first video clip is of some Jet Car maneuvers on the ramp. It looks like they were deliberately trying to blink the camera on the boom with smoke from the car in some case and to look directly into the flame plume in others.

This clip shows some minor action on the ramp as the pilots exit their planes. The pilot in the Jelly Belly is Brandt Seghetti and the one in Strega is Steve Hinton, Jr. – with his father handling the chock duties.


6 responses to “Aviation Stories for June 10, 2011”

  1. Jim Avatar

    “I think they may have had the fish”. That’s my new tag line for the week!

    The AOPA video on a private pilot landing an airliner was great, but I wonder how realistic it is for ATC to be able to talk someone down on any aircraft type. For instance, I would have had no idea how to silence the autopilot disconnect warning on that plane. (just keep smacking the master caution or master warn??)

    And dang….don’t give away the secret that most planes are flown by twisting a knob for 95% of the flight profile!!

    Don’t apologize for the sparse links….quality over quantity.

  2. Tracy Avatar

    Thanks for that comment – I’ll try to keep that in mind.

    In normal operation the autopilot is disconnected by pushing a button on the control yoke (or side stick) once – and to silence the disconnect warning that results, the same button is pushed a second time. On the Airbus the warning will eventually stop automatically if it’s a ‘normal’ disconnect. One of the warnings you receive is through the Master Warning Caution system – and yes, you can silence the warnings by pressing that obnoxious flashing light – or you can turn the autopilot back on (if it’s operational). Several ways to get to the same place – if you know what they are.

    Yeah, you have to remember that airline pilots are paid not for what they do on a ‘normal’ day, but what they do on days when the best option is a river landing.

  3. Nick Avatar

    Hi Tracy,

    I’d love to hear a bit about your Swift on one of the sparse story weeks. Keep up the good work!


  4. Tracy Avatar


    OK, I’ll keep that in mind. I wrote several articles on the rebuilding that I did on the hydraulic system. And back in 2009 I wrote this article about the Swift I’m flying now. I’ll try to get something more recent published.

    Thanks for the suggestion.


  5. Harrison Jones Avatar

    A private pilot landing an airliner? Possible, but not easy. Lots of variables, like how much experience and what kind of airliner. An auto land would have been a much better choice. I flew Cessnas for eight years before being hired as an airline pilot. My first simulator landing in a DC-9 was not pretty.

  6. Tracy Avatar

    I know the feeling – and it goes the other way, too. I had been flying the Lockheed C-5 for 8 years when I went for my airline interview. The simulator part of the interview for me was in the MD-80 while some of the others being interviewed had theirs in the 747.