EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 is in the history books, and what a week it was! In the 32 years I’ve attended “Oshkosh,” I can’t remember a week of better weather. It was the kind of weather that causes Wisconsinites to choose to live here year around…crazy people that we are.
No doubt that great weather helped boost attendance, which EAA has estimated at 550,000, but so did an outstanding array of featured aircraft, from the Airbus 350 to the B-52 to the F-35 to the Wingfoot One airship from Goodyear (my personal favorite, along with all the great homebuilts). And certainly, the good weather encouraged pilots to fly in. More than 2,660 show planes registered throughout the week, including 1,031 homebuilt aircraft, 976 vintage airplanes, 350 warbirds, 130 ultralights and light-sport aircraft, 101 seaplanes, 30 rotorcraft and 50 aerobatic aircraft.
Marc C. Lee wins the prize for the busiest P&P writer this month, having contributed three features. The first highlights the merits of the Kenai, a much-modified C-182 from Peterson Performance Plus that combines more power with aerodynamic changes to make a sweet-handling, slow-flying machine. Then, Marc took a five-day course from Accelerated Flight and Instrument Training (AFIT) in Utah to earn his certificated flight instructor rating and writes about that process. In his third feature, he reviews what the future looks like for those seeking careers in aviation, be they pilots, maintenance techs, flight attendants and/or air traffic controllers. He also found time to do a handheld radios Buyer’s Guide. Thanks for hanging in there with us this month, Marc!
James Wynbrandt also flew the new Piper PA-46 M350 for another of this month’s Pireps. He enjoyed a quick flight from Groton, Conn., to Martha’s Vineyard and on to Plymouth, Mass. That gave him enough time to check out some of the new features on the M350, such as electronic stability protection that’s designed to prevent stall/spins, steep spirals and loss of control.
And, P&P is introducing a new column this month, Legacy Pilot Reports, bringing back reports on classic aircraft that are still popular in the used aircraft market. This month’s report focuses on the 2004 Cessna Skylane.
Bill Cox discusses the subject of when to declare an emergency in his Proficiency column, sharing stories of some of his experiences. In his Cross-Country Log, he talks about his dream of space flight (when he wins the lottery) and reviews the realities of such flight.
In Let It Roll, Patty Wagstaff shares the story of making the decision to start an aerobatic flight school after years of avoiding that business and the fun she has had with her wide variety of students, including three of her cousins who visited for a week and took training.
In NTSB Debriefer, Peter Katz talks about how what you don’t know can kill you, with some heartbreaking examples.
In Tech Talk, Jim Lawrence shares the latest information on the updated iFly 740 moving-map GPS unit from Adventure Pilot. Great performance at a great price, he says. And in Avionics Academy, John Ruley offers some insight into the process of updating your audio panel, especially making sure your aircraft wiring can accommodate your new equipment.
Whew! There’s a lot in this issue. Kick your feet back and enjoy! And while you’re at it, check out our fun and vibrant online community on Facebook at www.facebook.com/planeandpilot.