PCDU Episodes:

Here is a full list of all PCDU Episodes since #1 back in 2009. Click on a title to visit the episode page & download or listen to the episode from there.

PCDU Episode 74: Kiwi User Fees … and other issues

We’re joined by our mate Dan Morris from New Zealand to discuss some news from the Land of the Long White Cloud. Topics include:

  • Air Traffic Control in the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquake, especially the problems they encountered due to centralising all area controllers in one location
  • How user fees in New Zealand have lead funding being removed for weather briefing service: pilots must now pay an annual fee to access the weather service
  • What the Air NZ Aviation Academy and student loan funding by the New Zealand government (which remains interest free if you stay in NZ) mean for flight training in NZ
  • Air New Zealand’s latest earnings report
  • The rapidly approaching Flair 2011 industry innovation showcase & airshow
  • The Will it Fly project that is working to produce a replica of the Pearse Flyer from 1903 with updates on the Will It Fly Facebook page

Brentword's LogoNext up, Steve travels back to his old high school to discover that it’s a lot better than when he was there (and NOT just because his class photo has been hidden :) Thanks to Chris Barry at Brentwood Secondary College and our friends at Aus Air Services, kids at the school have the opportunity to learn to fly as part of their studies. Steve chats with Chris, Angelina from Aus Air Services and some of the kids about this fantastic project.

Our final interview in this episode is a quick chat with Mark Pracy Sr from JetRide Australia and Pracy Racing as he gets ready to head to the 2011 Reno Air Races to fly his L39 low, fast & turning left. We discuss what it’s like to fly the course and how he’s going about keeping himself ready for it.

We wrap up the episode with a quick chat about Dale Watson’s Tiger Airways song on YouTube (thanks to Chris Fenlon for pointing us at it) and the fact that Tiger Airways are back flying, albeit at a reduced level. We also discuss how Crawford Rix was replaced by Tony Davis who is, in turn, leaving the airline shortly after working hard to bring it back from the brink.

Finally, we have some shoutouts, including:

  • Charlie Willwerth from the FlightTime Radio show is currently in the Mayo clinic under going chemotherapy to fight Leukemia – good luck & get well quick, mate!
  • Zyola T Mix from the Mile High Flyers has spun off her own project, a podcast about women pilots called The BoXXoffice
  • The Uncontrolled Airspace podcast has just celebrated its five year anniversary on August 23rd! Woo hoo! Go guys! Congrats to Jack, Jeb & Dave!
  • There’s a new aviation podcast with us from Canada called Cleared Enroute with hosts Danny Vacar & Chris Johnson (on Twitter as clearedenroute)
  • Jamie Dodson who writes the Nick Grant Adventures novels and sent us a couple of copies

NOTE: You can find Dan Morris on Twitter as TheGrandVizier, on Facebook and at his blog which mixes aviation & coffee in copious quantities.

PCDU Episode 67: Team Pracy: Racing, JetRides & Aircraft Imports

We’re joined by Mark Pracy Sr and Mark Pracy Jr to talk about the many aviation endeavours they’re involved in, including JetRide Australia, Pracy Racing and Aircraft Imports. We also have Bas Scheffers sitting in from Adelaide for the interview as well as a fantastic announcement to make towards the end of the show :)

We start by talking with Mark Sr about his background in aviation including how he grew up in Scone seeing warbirds all the time, was taught aerobatics by Col Pay and then eventually became an aerobatics instructor. He’s also got a low-level aerobatics waiver and is an airshow pilot displaying a number of warbirds at events around the country.

Eventually progressing to jets, the Pracys purchased a Czechoslovakian Aero L-39 Albatros two seat aircraft. We discuss with them it’s handling, speeds and the typical manoeuvres they’ll perform when taking passengers up as part of their JetRide Australia flights. We also discuss some of the more interesting folks they’ve had on board before moving into their other main operation: Aircraft Imports.

Mark Jr is a certified LAME & pilot who runs the Aircraft Imports business, working with his father to scout aircraft, flight test & inspect them and arrange their purchase for clients. With the AUS$ being so high compared to the US$, they’re being kept very busy arranging purchases for Australians at the moment (although we’re not sure using a container to bring a Cirrus into Australia is the best way of doing it :). Mark Jr is able to run the entire operation from the inspections to dismantling & packing then on to reassembly, test flights & certification back here in Australia.

The work Team Pracy do in JetRide Australia and Aircraft Imports all helps support their latest endeavour which is racing their L39 at the Reno Air Races. They’ve recently completed their qualifications and are now certified to race this year in September. We talk to them about the qualification & selection process, dealing with emergencies and the mechanics of reducing weight to help compete. Fascinating stuff.

Team Pracy also note that they’re happy to take on sponsors of their L39 in Reno so if you or an organisation you represent are interested in getting space on a very sexy aircraft, contact Mark Sr via mark@jetride.com.au.

Finally, we have our big announcement for the show:

Thanks to the generous support of Team Pracy, we’re being sent to Oshkosh 2011. That’s right, after 2 years of having to miss Oshkosh because of insufficient funds and looking like we were going to miss this one as well, Mark Sr & Mark Jr have offered to get us over there (mostly, we think, so they can see our heads explode as we’re surrounded by aviation :)

We’d like to thank Team Pracy for their most wonderful offer as it’s thanks to them that we’re going to finally be able to meet up with our online friends and experience the wonder that is AirVenture Oshkosh. We’re also receiving additional sponsorship funding from other groups including the fine folks at Aviation Advertiser who are helping to chip in some additional funds to cover our camping gear while we’re on site.

Watch this space as we’ll have more news & updates about how our trip to Oshkosh is progressing over the next few weeks :)

As if all this wasn’t enough, we wrap up the episode with a quick chat with Bas about the latest news on the OzRunways application and he points us at a cool video of OzRunways being demonstrated.

Music supplied from the royalty free production music at JewelBeat.

Video 001: Steve’s Flight in JetRide’s L39

Here’s a quick teaser video of Steve’s flight in JetRide’s L39 down at Tooradin airport recently. We’re still working on the full “Adventure Flights” video so this one’s a bit of a teaser and a test of putting videos in our feed.

Let us know how it works for you. Do you want videos in the feed or a separate feed for video entries?

You can find photos from the flight on our Flickr Collection, a bit of a write-up in our Talk to Me, Goose post and see lots of comments about the flight on our Facebook Page.