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Here We Are - March Already!

By Ian Brown, Editor, Bits and Pieces, EAA# 657159

March 2016

Spring is just around the corner. Technically it’s just a few days away as you read this, but for most of us there is still that magic day when the risk of frost has ended, more often around the back half of May. If you are one of those pilots with skis, you may have been flying more than the rest of us. Why not send in an article about a winter fly-in you attended?

Mike Bush’s Engine Oil webinar. We all use oil, whether we fly a C150 or a Mustang II or an RV. There is a lot to be learned about oil. Check out Mike Busch’s webinar here. You may think you know all you need to about oil…You just buy a quart of your regular and pour it in the designated hole, right? Hint, he doesn’t like the oil that you’re probably using. Do you know the difference between W100 and SAE 50? What’s a VI improver? Why are the benefits of synthetic oils less evident in piston-aircraft engines? Why are 100 percent synthetic engines not available for aircraft engines? Is there a difference if you use mogas rather than avgas regarding oil choices? This two-hour webinar will give you a whole lot of things to think about.

Background checks for Young Eagles pilots. We currently do not have the background check requirement for pilots flying Young Eagles in EAA chapters outside of the United States. We definitely welcome you to take the training if you would like to. It is really beneficial to all volunteers working with youth to understand the basics, and if you’re a sports coach or involved in youth work in another domain, you’re probably very familiar with the concept, which is simply to protect our youngsters by taking some training. In this case it’s very easy and will just take a few minutes of your time. You can find the training under your “My Account” page when you log in to the EAA website. It will be listed as “Go to Training.” EAA will be rolling out the international process soon, and we will be in contact with chapter leaders as it becomes available. Adam Kokke, membership service representative, would welcome any questions on the topic.

The biennial Eastern Townships Air Show, which was supposed to have run this year in Bromont, Quebec, has been cancelled. According to an article in La Presse, they were unable to get enough sponsors for this show, which had grown significantly in recent years. The article puts forth the idea that maybe it had grown too much and that perhaps a smaller event could go ahead.

Home builders about to start flight testing might find the following document very useful. It is for our U.S. friends, but there is a lot of useful material in this 99-page document called AC90-89A. The document includes some of the thought processes for various aircraft types and what to do through the testing hours, especially the early ones.

Transport Canada recently sent out AC300-004, which should be very useful to those of you owning or sharing a grass landing strip or other unpaved runway. The advisory circular covers such topics as measuring soil density, drainage, dust remediation, repairing ruts and other damage, and should be a very useful read to those of you fortunate enough to be using an unpaved runway.

Dynon Skyview owners using version 14.0 software have been reporting occasional screen-freeze problems in flight. There is no solution at present other than reverting to version 13.0, but Dynon has sent out a service bulletin requesting volunteers to help find the problem. An updated test version 14.0 is available for those willing to run it. One would imagine that you would not want to volunteer if you had not experienced the problem, but you can find the Technical Service Bulletin here. The problem is stated to only affect D1000 displays with serial numbers lower than 6,000 and D700 displays with serial numbers lower than 4,000. Skyview Touch displays are unaffected.

The middle of March represents “almost there” for most Canadian aviators who don’t get to fly much during the winter months. We might get another snowfall or two, but you know it won’t last much longer. Environment Canada is predicting a probability of a warmer than usual spring for both east and west coasts, with the deterministic forecast showing a warmer than normal spring for the whole country. Let’s hope the weather is kind to us and that we have a great flying season. Maybe there are a few of you with a project you’d be willing to write about. You may notice that your editor’s name is on a lot of the articles in Bits and Pieces. This newsletter is only as good as its contributors, so please take this as a direct request to you, dear reader, to make a personal goal of having at least one article published in Bits and Pieces this year.

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