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 111: Radio Killed the Podcast Star (Almost :) )

As the F111 was late & delayed by all sorts of issues, so too has our Episode 111 been late in arriving. Our big excuse has been discovering that the PCDU Radio Show has taken a LOT more effort than we expected. All this plus our day jobs, families AND our PCDU Commentary & Announcing gigs have, in turn, made it almost impossible to get an episode out. Suffice to say, we’re parking the radio show production for a while as we try to find a new way of working that lets us produce radio shows AND episodes. It’s very much a learning experience!

Meanwhile, we have managed to get this episode out and it’s packed with lots of great content, including:

  • 0:01:55 – Grant recently took a holiday in Bali & flew with Virgin Australia. He provides a review of their short-haul international business class service & the GA scene on Bali.
     
  • 0:12:50 – We chat with Mark Pracy from Pracy Racing about his preparations for Reno 2013 and the “feel” of the event now that it’s coming up on two years since the big crash back in 2011.
     
  • 0:34:46 – We present a summary of the chats Steve recorded with Dave Jacka as he made his solo-flight around Australia to become the first quadriplegic person to do so as part of his On A Wing & A Chair charity. These chats were recorded during Dave’s journey and after his return to Tooradin airport (YTDN), giving a great overview of the many issues & experiences he encountered.
     
  • 1:03:46 – During Exercise Talisman Saber, Damien Rose interviewed Jake Press a pilot with the KC135. He then went on to enjoy a great ride in a USAF C17 doing a low-level airdrop. You can watch his summary video posted to the PCDU YouTube channel:
     
  • 1:08:20 – Back in 2012, Grant had a great chat with David Cottee, the curator of the Qantas Heritage Collection
     
  • 1:29:28 – Also back in 2012, Grant had a fantastic chat with Paul Gianniotis, an ex-Cathay Pacific Flight Engineer who learned to fly in a Piper at Kai Tak in Hong Kong (no, really :) ) and even started flying hot air balloons in Hong Kong. As you could imagine, he’s got some amazing stories to tell!
     
  • 1:47:23 – We give some shoutouts:
    • The Stuck Mic AvCast has not only passed their 50th episode, they’re about to release their 55th! Awesome!
    • Dave Homewood is about to release his 50th Wings Over New Zealand podcast episode and it’s going to be a fantastic one!
    • We’ve released our 200th Australia Desk segment for the Airplane Geeks podcast
    • Bevan Anderson from AvSoft has seen his AvPlan application turn 2 years old
    • Steve’s daughter Rachel turned 18 and his wife now has her Yellow Belt in Karate
       
  • Australia’s Federal Election is coming up & once again we’re going to do some Election Quick Cast episodes to give you an insite to the aviation policies (if any) of the major parties

PCDU Episode 93: Positive Moves

After three years of lamenting the hassles involved in getting to the West Coast of Australia to report on aviation happenings wwwaaayyy over there on the other side of the big empty, we’ve finally done something about it: we’ve set up a PCDU-WestCoast office and found someone just as aviation-crazy as we are to run it :)

In this episode we introduce Ben Jones who is based in West Australia and has a long and fascinating history of aviation. Clearly it’s in his blood as most of his family are into aviation while Ben himself is a pilot, home builder, member of the RAAF reserve and much much more. He’s even started a blog called WA Aviator to record his aviation activities ‘over there.’

There’s more to the episode than introducing Ben, however, and here’s what you’ll find in it:

  • 0:02:29 – We bring Ben in & start chatting about his background in aviation, the aviation scene in West Australia and his current projects.
     
  • 0:26:58 – We chat with Sussan Ley, Federal Member for Farrer, Commercial Pilot and one of the two people responsible for starting the “Friends of Aviation” group in Federal Parliament. With only a half hour window to chat with Sussan, we had to jump through a number of subjects in only a short time. Hopefully we can return to chat again with Sussan in the near future as it sounds like there are plenty of additional stories for us to listen to as well as updates on progress with Friends of Aviation group :)
     
  • 0:53:02 – Mark Pracy from JetRide Australia and Pracy Racing joins us to talk about their preparation for the Reno Air Races this year. We discuss the Galloping Ghost crash, the changes made to address the issues it raised and Mark’s training & preparation techniques.
     
  • 1:11:04 – David Brown from the Sport Aviation Association of Australia chats with Steve about the AusFly event being held at Narromine over September 14th to 16th.

We also have a very special announcement about AusFly: We’ve been invited to attend and provide commentary, narration and general radio services during the show. We’ll be there with a PA system, low powered FM transmitter and a live-stream to the Internet via LiveATC and our MyRadioStream link. Check it out at:

Finally, at 1:24:13 we have a few shout outs to cover:

  • Richard Pollard (the voice of the JetRide ads) is heading back to New Zealand to start a new chapter in his life.
     
  • Andrea Crook (our awesome voice-over lady) is launching her own podcast network: the Waffle Network
     
  • Steve gives HUGE thanks to Gary Mac for helping him with some voice-over training during the past couple of months. Check out Steve’s even more dulcet tones, folks! :)
     
  • Well done to the Airplane Geeks for getting sponsorship from AOPA
     
  • If you’re in West Australia, check out the Sport Builders Club of WA who are holding their annual fly-in on September 30th at Serpentine Airfield, which also happens to be right about the same time as the WestFly event
     
  • Thanks to JetRide Australia and OzRunways for renewing their sponsorship of our show!

PCDU Episode 85: Tyabb Air Show 2012 & ATC Ben Answers Your Questions

P51 at TyabbAfter a long break from the show, Ben Ippolito (aka ATC BenATCBen.PCDU@gmail.com) returns in this packed episode to tell us about getting current again, wrap up the Tyabb airshow and answer some of your ATC questions. We also bring on a new sponsor (OzRunways) who helped us get to the recent Parafield airshow (more on that in a later episode).

We start by chatting with Ben about the steps he took to regain currency after spending a few years focussing on becoming an Air Traffic Controller. After this, we move into our Tyabb Airshow content:

  • 08:32 – Peter Bernardi & John Brett from the Peninsula Aero Club discuss the history of the show, the challenges in making it happen (the paperwork!), their involvement in the show and their aviation histories
  • 22:46 – Grant chats with Paul Bennett from MaxxG Aerobatics about his aviation background, winning aerobatic competitions, flying his Pitts Special and flying warbirds
  • 29:37 – Jim & Jenny Wickham talk to Grant about their 3/4 scale P51s & the latest news in Wicko’s world
  • 34:56 – Scott Taberner talks about flying his 1941 Ryan ST3-KR & his flying history
  • 39:44 – Mark Pracy from JetRide Australia gives us an update on the 2012 race, his perspective on the Reno crash and their expanding fleet of L39s & their new Glasair
  • 47:51 – Doug Thomas talks about the Pelican Amphibian, a Russian designed seaplane and the only one in Australia
  • 53:22 – Squadron Leader Adrian Burge talks about the CT4
  • 57:29 – Peter Clements & Steve Death tell us about the history of the Southern Knights
  • 61:04 – Guy Bourke talks to us about flying the T6 Harvard (or Texan if you’re from the USA :), the P51, the Spitfire, the P40 and the Lockheed Hudson as well as which aircraft he dreams of flying
  • 67:48 – Matt Hall on making it down to Tyabb despite the weather, his recent back surgery, how his routine has modified since Avalon, his first aircraft vs car race, his new projects for 2012 & his rotary license
  • 79:46 – Tim Connell returns to reprise his Timbo’s Tarmac sessions from Avalon 2011
  • 81:13 – Peter Bernardi – post show

Following all this great content, Steve, Grant & Ben review their experiences & highlights of the Tyabb show then at 88:42 Ben answers a few ATC questions that have come in:

  • Handling emergencies
  • Who decides whether an airport is closed
  • Who decides runway configurations during operations

Big thanks to Allan VP, ATC Ben, Steven Pam & Chris for their help on the day at Tyabb.

Notes:
* The Aus Air Services advert is provided courtesy of Star FM 94.3
* Cover art by Chris Visscher & David Vanderhoof

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.

PCDU Episode 64: Dick Smith – Setting it Straight

We are fortunate to have Dick Smith return to PCDU, joining us to discuss his views on Australia’s aviation environment. We talk about his time as chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority and then his return as chairman of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority. He mentions some of the initiatives he started that worked as well as some that didn’t quite work as planned. Dick also gives us a rather candid look at his views on user fees, ministers and what’s going wrong with aviation today.

Once again this discussion with Dick is sure to generate divided commentary from those in aviation, both old & new. If you’ve not already listened to our previous chat with Dick about his early flying adventures, you really should check it out now.

Following our chat with Dick we have a dramatic change of scene as the Infrequent Flyer (aka Anthony Simmons) returns to give us his View From the Lounge angle on the Avalon Airshow. Then, to answer Anthony’s question of “How it all flows together” we have ATC_Ben return to present his latest Controller’s Corner where he explains just what went on at Mercat Manor.

Following that we have a few interviews recorded at Avalon:

  • FLT LT Pete Komar, an F-18F Super Hornet pilot with the RAAF
  • BAe Hawk Mk127 techo LAC Brian Dick
  • Pilot Officer Emmanuel “Muz” Murray talks about flying the BAe Hawk Mk127
  • SGT Kerry Dimar who works in logistics with the BAe Hawk Mk127

To keep with the Fast Jets angle, we’ve thrown in some cockpit audio from Steve’s flight with Mark Pracy in JetRide’s L39 Albatros.

For this episode, we’ve dived into the mailbag to bring out:

We also give a shout out to:

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.

Talk to me, Goose!

Yee hah! Jester’s dead!

Steve scored a ride in an L39 Albatros with Mark Pracy from Jetride Australia, flying from Tooradin airport (YTDN) in the south east of Melbourne. Mark ran them through a combination of horizontal & vertical manoeuvres during which Steve experienced a sustained peak of 5G’s. Best of all, he didn’t even hurl!

In flight video was captured along with the briefing and a few interviews. We’ll be putting together a special video episode that combines Steve’s jet ride and Grant’s 8G RedBull aerobatics ride last year with Joel Haski from Red Baron. We’ll also be putting together an audio episode on high-thrill adventure rides. Watch for these to come out in the PCDU feed in the near future.

Meanwhile, here’s a quick video of Steve returning to the ramp in the L39:

www.flickr.com

Steve's JetRide Adventure Flight Steve’s L39 JetRide Adventure photoset