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  1. "New" Computer, "New" Planes

    I knew it would happen eventually: my old Dell running Windows Vista finally gave up the ghost. So, I got a refurbished Dell with a faster processor, more RAM, and Windows 7. Hopefully, there will be no more "fatal errors" when flying.

    However, I have lost my FSX disk. Gone. I still have FS2004, but Disk 4 was stuck in the old, dead, computer. With a little research, I remembered the trick of putting a straightened paper clip into the hole to eject the disk, but my wife could ...
  2. Short Field in a Cherokee: Port Orchard, WA

    I needed to get my Cherokee out of the rain, so I moved from a tie-down at Bremerton to a tiny hangar at the tiny Port Orchard airport. With a runway length of 2460 feet, a width of 28 feet, and 50-foot trees on either end, going in and out involved a significant pucker factor. This is a recreation of my first flight there.

    I take off from Bremerton and stay at pattern altitude for the less-than-10-mile trip. Almost immediately I spot the Port Orchard strip, which appears about the ...
  3. Grass Field in a Cherokee: Leander, TX

    The only time I landed on grass was in Leander, Texas. I had found an aircraft mechanic to perform an economical annual inspection on my Cherokee 140, but I had to get it to his private airstrip. This is a recreation of that first flight to Pegasus Place, about 30 miles northwest of Austin.

    After planning, I start on the taxiway at (now-closed) Austin Mueller, and taxi to the smaller general aviation runway and depart to the southeast. As I climb through 1000 feet, I turn toward ...

    Updated 01-12-2015 at 12:06 PM by gmurray56

  4. Flying the iPad

    The iPad is an invaluable tool for many real pilots, with flight planning, interactive checklists, moving maps, instrument approach plates, etc. There are also some good flight simulators in the app store. While it may seem odd to fly the tablet by tilting (especially if you are used to a yoke, throttle quadrants, rudder pedals, and multiple displays), the actual flying is surprisingly intuitive.

    Here are my favorite FREE simulators:
    DOGFIGHT: This is a WWI simulation, where ...

    Updated 12-19-2014 at 03:09 PM by gmurray56

  5. XC Bremerton, WA to Hoquiam, WA

    This was one of my favorite flights, to the Pacific coast from Bremerton. I use the Saratoga (FS2004) to recreate the 60-mile flight. When I appear on the runway, I look at the instruments only to see black holes where the gauges should be. There is an autopilot and ADF, but no nav radios. In the virtual cockpit, there is a full array of instruments and radios, but they are static and somewhat out of focus, for looks only. However, “alt” and “w” give me a panoramic view to the front, with ...
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