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Tales from the Log of the Ruptured Duck

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
On the next trip to pickup the plane, I plan to go in the evening instead of morning. Julie and I got up at 04:50 the other day. It raised holy hob with the sleep cycle of a couple of elderly folks. I’m thinking, arrive at the field about 5:00pm, do a thorough preflight/acceptance inspection. Learn a bit more about operating the little hand-held radio and electronic instruments. Get a full weather briefing. Take off at 6:00 or 6:30, and fly the 1-1.3 hour trip home.

Sundown is at 9:00pm, so I’ll be flying home during a quiet time with good light. There’s a sod strip not far from my flight path where skydivers operate from. I may have to divert around that area if they’re jumping when I’m flying
 

Kayak Jack

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Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
Got a call last night. Big change of plans; I like it much better. The dealer suggested that I come to the hangar this morning, we remove the wings, put the plane on his trailer, and we trailer it to Mason Jewett Field TEW. There, we’ll reassemble it.

This will allow me to learn how to operate the small, handheld radio, use and understand the electronic instruments, and practice takeoffs and landings on my home field. So, off I go!
 

texastom

Well-Known Member
Jul 29, 2013
184
4
Dallas
Disappointment! As they say on TV, “We are having technical difficulties.” I have to try again another day.

One thing we learned was - that’s the last time we get up at 05:00! We were dead the whole afternoon.
Oh well. It will happen when it happens.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
Yesterday, we dissembled the plane, carefully loaded it into a 25’ long covered trailer, drove about 70 miles to Mason Jewett Field TEW, and reassembled it. It is - by FAR. - The snazziest looking plane there.

Today, I’ve been studying the radio. First task is to program some specific frequencies as channels. It simplifies getting set up to approach a field, listening to wind, weather, runways, etc about the field, then switching to another frequency for other traffic for the area. Those number keys are little, and the plane is bouncing, and I have to have my eyes on the skies, not a little radio. So, I have to learn how to use it.

I also have to learn how to set up and use the instrument panel. Digital readouts are nowhere nearly as useful as round gauges. Round gauges give useful information in a large chunk, and have range markings on them. Little strips of green, yellow, and red are in the gauge face. When the needle lies in the green range, you’re OK. Yellow is caution, and red is out of limits.

Digital read outs are mkre specific, but not as useful. Knowing that my cylinder head temperture is exactly 1126 degrees, not 1127 degrees, isn’t nearly as useful as knowing what that number means, and is it nkrmal - or getting too hot?

Later this week, we’ll get’er airborne.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
GAINES AIRFIELD ULTRALITE FLY IN

Early yesterday morning, I left for a fly-in of ultralite planes,
pilots, friends, and kids. This is a private field that exists only once or twice a year. The Michigan Ultra Lite Association has been gathering here and doing this for 32 years now. A small, country church borders the north edge of the field. Selling food the attendees is a money raising activity for them. It all dovetails very nicely.

I drove in about 09:00, set up my rainfly and tent. Walking alongside the grass taxiway, I started to meet new friends all along the way. As I approached the doings - kids riding in a train of toy airplanes behind a lawn tractor - kids and adults getting airplane rides - folks sitting at shaded picnic tables eating breakfast - I smelled coffee. A few minutes later I was enjoying some home-made cookies and coffee. More new friends to talk with.

Later, I wandered back to the planes. Rick and Rob, the fellows who built my plane, were there. Rob was hawking tickets for plane rides at $40 apiece, and Rick was flying them aloft. Things hummed along mightily. At lunchtime, Rick took a break. Not only was he hungry, but winds had developed and grown stronger. There was a gaining crosswind, and vertical thermals were bouncing Rick pretty badly. Upshot was, that they had to stop rides. Lots of disappointed folks.

After supper, we neatened up the field a bit, sat arond talking, and the - THE CAMPFIRE. Ahh yes, the ancient, timeless campfire gathering. Stories of escapades from the last 32 years started rolling. So told by
 

oldbuffpilot

Well-Known Member
May 13, 2014
553
22
79
Central Kansas and Central Texas
Yesterday, we dissembled the plane, carefully loaded it into a 25’ long covered trailer, drove about 70 miles to Mason Jewett Field TEW, and reassembled it. It is - by FAR. - The snazziest looking plane there.

Today, I’ve been studying the radio. First task is to program some specific frequencies as channels. It simplifies getting set up to approach a field, listening to wind, weather, runways, etc about the field, then switching to another frequency for other traffic for the area. Those number keys are little, and the plane is bouncing, and I have to have my eyes on the skies, not a little radio. So, I have to learn how to use it.

I also have to learn how to set up and use the instrument panel. Digital readouts are nowhere nearly as useful as round gauges. Round gauges give useful information in a large chunk, and have range markings on them. Little strips of green, yellow, and red are in the gauge face. When the needle lies in the green range, you’re OK. Yellow is caution, and red is out of limits.

Digital read outs are mkre specific, but not as useful. Knowing that my cylinder head temperture is exactly 1126 degrees, not 1127 degrees, isn’t nearly as useful as knowing what that number means, and is it nkrmal - or getting too hot?

Later this week, we’ll get’er airborne.
Jack
Reminds me of transition to the the B 52 8 engines each with 7 or maybe 8 different gauges. Can't recall now (too many airplanes) soon learned in multi engines, IF each row of needles are all pointing the same way everything's ok!
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
My air speed indicator is a clear plastic tube with a forward-pointing hole in the bottom for ram air. A red,
plastic ring goes up & down to indicate speed. I bought little rolls of red, yellow, and green tape for range markers.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
THE PERE MARQUETTE TRAIL

In Michigan’s history, similar to other locales, well meaning missionaries visited the area. Pere Marquette (Father Marquette) traveled our area. Among other things a railroad and a city were named after him. Now, there is a bike trail named for him.

Get out your “take along map” of Michigan’s lower peninsula, the back lf your left hand. See the base knuckle of the ring finger? The left edge of that knuckle can be Baldwin, the W’ly terminus of the Pere Marquette Rail to Trail.. The lower-left corner of the base knuckle of your middle finger is where Reed City is located. 1/4” to the right is Clare. About 1/4” below the bottom edge of the base knuckle of your index finger is Midland. A few ink stripes would further fill in where four interstates I-69, I-75, I-94, and I-96, and several US highways traverse the state.

Last year, Charlie and I rode part of the Pere Marquette trail. This year we bit off another 32 miles of it. We started where we had left off at Lake Station, a tiny burg 10 miles W’ly of Clare on Monday morning. Temperatures were 88-90 degrees, and humidity was 80%-90%. Stopping for lunch where we were staying In Clare, we then embarked another 10 miles to Coleman.

I needed some salt tablets, but hadn’t brought them along. I was really glad to finally arrive at Coleman where Charlie’s pickup awaited the bikes. Strange coincjdence, Charlie had parked right across the street from an ice cream shoppe!!! I told you he was a good trail partner. BIG bowls of ice cream later, we drove back to Clare

Back at the hotel in Clare, it was time to scrub off the grime and repair to the lounge. A leisurely supper restored us to human beings again. I joined a small gaggle of geezers in Adirondack chars for cigars . Turned out they were all retirrd law enforcement types who had been coming up to Clare for 30 years to play golf. I thought of telling them that Chuck Littleton was a friend of mine, but thought, “No, better not. If they happen to know him, and are carrying concealed weapons. . . . . .”

Yesterday morning started with a hearty breakfast. Then we started to drive to, and past Coleman, and on to Midland. About 8-10 miles befkre Midland, is some of the village of Sanford. The other parts of the town were washed downstream a couple of months ago when a weakened dam broke. It washed away some houses, a lot of yard sheds, several hundred trees, lots of boats and docks - some still connected to each other, bottled gas pigs, restaurants, etc. We couldn’t get any further without eating up an inordinate amount of time. So, yesterday’s 12 mile ride from Coleman to Sanford was it. I was glad, as by that time, I was running on empty anyway.

Our unanimous decision was to return to the ice cream shoppe, have tacos for lunch, and ice cream for dessert. We’ll complete the trail on another trip or two.

By the way, Chuck. The trail runs through a small town by the name of Farwell. That was the name of the disagreeable fellow who wrote for the two kids running the Kayak.com site. Remember him? He told us that nobody was building wooden boats anymore. I’m pretty sure that he was from here, and just used the town name as his pen name, nom de plume.
 
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Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
Both Farwell, and his woman partner, whose moniker does not come to mind, were nasty. They were defensive as all git out. I think they recognized that someone with knowledge and experience had views that challenged theirs. Their insecurities were pretty obvious.

Participants here share their different views, and it is a learning experience for us, not a threatening experience. Kind of like the difference between contestants on Jeopardy, vs those on Wheel of Fortune.
 

Kayak Jack

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Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
THE FINAL BRICK

Today, the last of the eastern leg of Michigan’s Pere Marquette Trail was completed. (Western leg from Baldwin to Reed City, central leg from Reed City to Clare, and eastern leg from Clare to Midland.) Charlie and I finally navigated around the badly broken area of Sanford, and rode into Midland MI. Some may recognize Midland as home of the Dow Chemical Company.

Weather was in the low to mid 70s, humidity was low, terrain was downhill, and we had mild breezes. After the ride, we beat a hasty retreat to a favorite ice cream shop, then coffee shop. (No wonder we like bike riding! )

Get out there, gang, and put some miles behind your smiles.
 

oldsparkey

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Aug 25, 2003
10,431
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Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
THE FINAL BRICK
Get out there, gang, and put some miles behind your smiles.
If you don't mind right now we are baking BRICKS outside during the day. With the heat index hovering between 104 and 108 it's smarter to be inside while the tourists , bricks and fools bake. That way the smiles stay on and don't melt away.
Our outside play time will be when you are shoveling Snow. The best outside time is during our Fall , Winter and Spring times. ( Especially our almost cool winters ) Just anticipating the arrival of those days has me smiling. Especially the thought of being able to try out the new tent I got. Yep , a New Ultralight Tent and No I still have all the Hammocks but sometimes (.o_O I should never :rolleyes:admit this :oops: ) I ....ACTUALLY.... need a tent.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
God help us. I have 2 each one man tents, a 4 man, tent, plus a hammock. I gave my Son a 1 man and a 4 man tent.

i still look at tent ads. I may be sick. My Little Boy (the one who lives and romps around inside me, the one who wraps a blanket around his shoulders like a cape and jumps off of the table) still likes tents. sigh

i used to be OK, and then I paddled with Joey Dupre. I think he’s to blame. Yeah! Yeah! That’s it!
 
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oldsparkey

Well-Known Member
Aug 25, 2003
10,431
113
78
Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
God help us. I have 2 each one man tents, a 4 man, tent, plus a hammock. I gave my Son a 1 man and a 4 man tent.
Jack , It's sickness and is commonly found in people who spend some time in the woods , especially on overnight excursions.
The kids came down here a while back and left with two , two person tents and one 4 person one. Plus they took dehydrated meals , a water purifier and a water filter. Assorted stoves and Titanium pots and pans.
Since then I acquired 2 solo tent's , then this solo tent. Also a two person ( free standing one ) Which by the way is still in the box in the closet. I keep using a hammock or one of the solo tents , they are lot lighter , a lot lot , lighter.
Couldn't resist this newer one. I have been watching it for a couple of years and finally pulled the trigger on it. No guide lines to use it. You can tie off two if the weather is really bad but they are not needed for normal use. Two Treaking poles hold it up ( I got 2 collapsible 48 inch carbon fiber poles to use ). Stakeout the 4 corners and the 2 doors , insert the poles and it's up. Plus it offers lots of ventilation ( especially with both doors open ) and 2 huge vestibules for gear. The material is a silicon coated polyester which does not stretch and packs lighter. it shed's water where the nylon and even silnylon tents adsorb some water.
Even comes in a 2 person one but all I need is the solo one.

Here is how it's set up.

Where I got it.
 

Kayak Jack

Well-Known Member
Aug 26, 2003
13,976
168
84
Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
Joey, I’d gladly take full credit for your total, moral deterioration. But, I’m afraid that your status as an innocent had begun eroding before I came into the scene. But, I did give you a nudge, or two. ;-)

And, will gamely try to give a couple more nudges the next time, too.