PCDU Episode 120: History & Records

Steve’s very happy to have finally started converting currency into currency as he’s logging hours in a Flysynthesis Texan and progressing towards getting his RA-Aus license. Grant’s been too busy with work to get many hours but did finally get to log some “special shape” time in his balloon logbook. Naturally, both Steve & Grant are VERY happy to have finally released another episode.

Air Marshal Geoff Brown with Steve at Pt Cook

Air Marshal Geoff Brown with Steve at Pt Cook

This episode the boys are joined by Kathy Mexted and Maikha Ly so you know the blooper reel at the end will be “interesting” to say the least. Kathy & her hubby have been flying their Piper Cub while Maikha’s been flying for work but, thanks to Adelaide’s weather lately and a recent house purchase, he’s not been able to do any personal flying.

For this episode we’re bringing you a mixed bag of content from the RAAF’s Pt Cook Centenary of Military Aviation airshow (including Steve’s chat with AIRMSHL Geoff Brown), Kathy’s chat with Kingsley Just about his new world record, catching up with John Fisher to talk L39s & USAF and Grant’s recent visit to the B24 restoration project in Werribee for their heritage recognition award ceremony

  • 0:13:15 – Steve chats with Air Marshal Geoff Brown (Chief of Air Force) about the Royal Australian Air Force’s celebration of their centenary at Point Cook, his career with the RAAF, the RAAF’s fleet upgrades & current operations, the C-27J & F-35, flying gliders and transitioning from flying CH-47 Chinooks to flying fast jets.
     
  • 0:30:34 –
    Tony Maher demonstrates the electrically driven mid-upper turret

    Tony Maher demonstrates the electrically driven mid-upper turret

    Grant visited the B24 restoration project at Werribee for their Heritage Recognition award ceremony and recorded a few chats with the following people:
    • Doug Lindsay (President of the B24 Restoration project)
    • Professor Alex Baitch (National President, Engineers Australia)
    • Andrew Elsbury MLC (Member of State Parliament)
    • Dan O’Connell (Volunteer)
    • Before chatting with Tony Maher (volunteer), Grant also recorded the sound of Tony demonstrating the electrically driven mid-upper turret
       
  • 0:50:41 – Kathy chats with Kinglsey Just about setting the Guinness World Record for the most continuous rolls performed in an aircraft (an amazing 987 in his Pitts Special!). They talk about the planning & preparation, the method, the reason and how it all worked out (complete with a dramatic ending). They also talk about his interest in aviation including his gliding & flying tow planes in Europe.
     
  • 1:05:08 –
    Kevin Bailey and his wife with their Stinson Reliant

    Kevin Bailey and his wife with their Stinson Reliant

    Maikha was with us at the RAAF’s Pt Cook event and he spent most of his time with the antiques and warbirds where he recorded the following:
    • Chris Shine with his Beech Staggerwing
    • Kevin Bailey and his Stinson Reliant
    • Allan Harding and his MkIII Auster
    • Allan’s young assistant Lloyd Galloway talks about flying, the RA-Aus scholarship he was awarded and his involvement with the Auster
    • Steve Death talks about the Southern Knights formation team
    • Maureen Massey is the Vice President of the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) and she talks about the C-47, DHC-4 Caribou and PBY Catalina
    • Robert ‘Bob’ StJohn, a Vietnam veteran, volunteers with HARS to help keep the Caribou flying. He talks about what’s involved in keeping it going and his experiences in Vietnam with “Wallaby Airlines” (the RAAF’s Caribou operations)
    • Warren Gengos flies the HARS PBY Catalina
       
  • 1:42:55 – John “Viper” Fisher from Top Gun Australia talks about Top Gun Australia’s operations, flying the L-39, being a WSO on the F-4 & flying the A-10 with the USAF plus his exchange rotation with the French
     
  • 1:59:04 – We come back for some shout outs:
    • Thanks to Barry Moore for suggesting we chat with John Fisher
    • Shane Simpson has recently completed his first solo in a Cessna 152 at Moorabbin (YMMB). Onya mate!
    • Congratulations to Anthony Crichton-Browne and his wife Prudence for the recent arrival of their son Andrew
    • Our friend Owen Zupp who is making the transition from Boeing 737s to a command position with Jetstar A320s as well as releasing his new book “50 More Tales of Flight” and his new site “The Pilots Blog
    • Maikha recommends that everyone should check out the South Australian Aviation Museum in Adelaide
    • Grant’s ecstatic to hear that OzRunways are producing an Android version of their app (“Project Marvin” – awesome! :) ). With AvPlan also producing an Android version, Grant is very happy to not need to buy an iThing :)
    • Congratulations to Steven Pam who has done a marathon effort producing the Tyabb Airshow DVD and also to Karl von Moller from the Broken Wings project who’s been helping out as well
       

 

Music for this episode was “Short Change Hero” by “The Heavy” (2009 on Counter Records)

PCDU Episode 114: AusFly 2013 - Back Together Under One Sky

Would you let these guys run a radio station? AusFly did!

Would you let these guys run a radio station? AusFly did!

September 2013 rolled around and it was time for the second AusFly event at Narromine in New South Wales. Team PCDU squeezed into a bus that was loaded with Analog Al’s airshow PA system, our gear and a certain trade stand then drove over 800km in a day to get there. Whew!

Once there we cleared out the studio, set up the sound system & got ready to run AusFly Radio & do the air display commentary. We applied the lessons we learned from AusFly 2012 and, over the course of the event, wound up learning all new lessons so AusFly 2014 will be even better. We also recorded a stack of content and have packaged some of it up into this first AusFly 2013 episode. Even though it’s over 2 hours long, there’s still more yet to come but we’ll save that for later episodes.

For now, here’s the AusFly 2013 content we have for you in this episode:

  • 0:02:13 – Ben Jones joins us for a recap of AusFly 2013 with David Brown from the SAAA.
     
  • 0:09:32 – Rob Fisher from Superior Air Parts covers the aviation components & parts they’re able to supply
     
  • 0:15:01 – Anton Meier from Aerosport Aviation in New Zealand talks about the Triton Sport, a derivation of the Sport Cruiser
     
  • 0:21:27 – Russell Milton from Atlas Aviation Australia talks about their SkyLeader aircraft
     
  • 0:26:22 – Stephen Gale talks us through learning to fly the SIA Marchetti S211 jet with input from Willie “Godfather” Chew (ex-RSAF instructor). We’re also joined by Jodie Davis from SkyThrills who went flying with Stephen in the jet.
     
  • 0:34:13 – Allan Barton from Zenair Australia tells us about the Zenith aircraft they’re importing from the USA
     
  • 0:37:11 – Dianne McNamara produces custom aircraft covers for Punkin Head Air Sports
     
  • 0:43:08 – Michael Coates represents Pipistrel in Australia
     
  • 0:51:36 – David Baddams runs Snow Goose International and ferries aircraft around the world. He also flew David Brown’s RV10 in an RV formation at AusFly
     
  • 1:00:31 – Grant & Ben chat with Dick Smith and Ryan Campbell about flying solo around the world
     
  • 1:09:50 – Amanda Pond from Puddle To Pond Financial talks about life insurance for pilots
     
  • 1:13:45 – Steve & Ben talk to Paul Holler & Norm Edmunds from the SAAA about home building aircraft
     
  • 1:38:17 – Bas Scheffers went up with Jeremy from SkyThrills to do some aerobatics in their Super Decathalon. He also tells us a bit about the latest OzRunways news
     
  • 1:46:14 – Steve, Grant, Ben & David Brown wrap up their AusFly 2013 review

Don’t forget to go & support Steven Pam’s Airheads documentary, a movie that desperately needs to be made.

PCDU Episode 98: Farewell 2012

Dan O'Donnell & Grant getting ready to go fly Matt Hall's Extra 300As 2012 draws to a close come & spend a bit of time with Steve, Grant, Bas & ATC Ben as they wrap up the year with some new content, some discussions and a bit of fun. It’s another long episode but we think it’s a pretty good way to send out the year :)

The episode unfolds as:

  • 0:03:30 – We discuss issues CASA are having with RA-Aus that has seen a number of LSA grounded due to administrative issues, one of which was Bas’ own aircraft
     
  • 0:21:35 – An update on the fight to save Aldinga Aerodrome
     
  • 0:29:10 – An interview Steve & Grant recorded with Brian & Rick from Commando Skydivers at the recent Tooradin Aviation Day
     
  • 0:40:33 – a chat we recorded with Dan O’Donnell (RAAF F18 pilot who also flies with Matt Hall Racing) and Angie Morino (from Aus Air Services)
     
  • 0:57:42 – Anthony Simmons returns at last with The View From The Lounge #13: The Phantom Dolmades Roller
     
  • 1:03:14 – Steven Pam has sent us a Christmas Greeting
     
  • 1:04:54 – Steve, Grant, Bas & ATC_Ben discuss the View from the Lounge and Top Gun
     
  • NOTE: The Collective View From The Lounge is a compilation audio CD featuring 14 TVFTL segments that you can package for AUS$7.50 (posted within Australia) or AUS$12.50 (posted internationally). It’s a great collection of Anthony Simmons at his best & makes for a lot of enjoyable listening. You can purchase it by using our “Donate” button to send through your $$$ & note that you’re buying a copy in the “Purpose” message box. We can sort out your address via emails once the order is in :)
     
     
  • 1:07:17 – Bas talks about the latest updates to the OzRunways app and gives us his response to the “OzRunways for Android” lobby on Facebook
     
  • 1:16:51 – ATC_Ben talks about becoming an On Job Trainer Instructor in the ATC world
     
  • 1:21:34 – CASA have introduced a Notice of Final Rule Making regarding the use of EFBs in Australian skies (PDF) – and the news is good, according to Bas
     
  • 1:32:12 – Tech in the cockpit comes up along with the inevitable IOS vs Android vs Windows 8 with Bas in the Blue Corner and Grant in the Red Corner. DING!!!!
     
  • 1:33:16 – Ben Jones sends us a Christmas greeting
     
  • 1:33:39 – Damien Rose also sends us a Christmas greeting
     
  • 1:25:12 – We spend some time reviewing the highlights of 2012, including:
    • Grant got his balloon license
    • ATC_Ben went to the USA and Oshkosh 2012
    • Steve got a C130 ride over Sydney
    • Bas changed his work and lifestyle to focus on OzRunways, allowing him to work for himself and move to a property where he’s setting up a runway on the front yard (now, where have we heard *that* phrase before? :) )
       
  • 1:43:49 – We look forward to 2013 and talk a little about our Avalon 2013 plans and how we’re always up for new sponsors for our Avalon coverage
     
  • 1:50:13 – We give shout-outs to those who have helped us over 2012, including:
    • Sponsors & Advertisers: JetRide Australia, OzRunways, , AvSoft & Adventure Wings
    • Those who helped make AusFly such a success: QBE Insurance, Aero Refuellers & Narromine Shire Council
    • Courtney Miller & Max Flight for inspiring PCDU
    • Cathey Visscher & Kitt Loughman for their on-going support behind the scenes and their endless roles as “podcast widows”
    • Of course, a big thanks goes out to our audience for doing us the honour of listening to our programme, supporting it, interacting with us and much much more

With 2013 practically on top of us, we’re going to enjoy some New Year celebrations and then get back to work on completing Episode 99 which covers the C130H retirement & is due out in late January.

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 91: New Horizons

Give Way to Balloons

Always give way to Balloons :)

After a number of years and the inevitable stumbling blocks that life throws at us, Grant has finally become a balloon pilot having completed his check flight up at Mildura just the other day. From how the final stages of solos & check flight unfolded to a comparison of “first solo” moments, Steve & Grant talk briefly about the realisation that a new license & $5 can now buy you a beer…

While Grant would no doubt like the entire episode to be about the new horizons he’s just opened up, there’s a lot more to this episode so we really should get into telling you about it:

  • 0:09:07 – Anthony Crichton-Browne & Bas Scheffers join Steve to discuss iPad aviation apps & their increased useage in cockpits (both small ones & large ones)
  • 0:36:10 – Having discussed apps in general, Bas then spends some time answering a number of OzRunways questions that Anthony had for him
  • 0:43:50 – Pieter Johnson presents From Up Here to Down There #4 with his interviews with Mark McNamara from GippsAero and Mark Shearer from Ferra Engineering on the Team Australia stand at Farnborough 2012

    Remember, if you’ve not checked out Pieter’s own podcast (Aviation Xtended) then you really should do so!

  • 0:55:04 – Steve & Bas chat with Peter Gibson from CASA about the new, easier to obtain (& cheaper) Class 2 fixed wing pilot medical that allows you to use a General Practitioner & be assessed like a standard drivers’ license (with a few extra checks). Of course, there are some restrictions such as: single engine piston, < 1,500kg MTOW, only 1 passenger, below 10,000' & no aerobatics
  • 1:10:13 – Andrew Rankin, Steve McCann & Jennifer Palmer join us from Aviation Australia to discuss their aviation training courses (Flight Attendants and Engineers) and their Aviation Careers Expo
  • 1:30:20 – Grant interviews Alan Joyce (no, really!!!!) about the Qantas experience, areas the company should focus on and flying hot air balloons
  • 1:34:15 – Steve & Grant review the show’s content, including the Class 2 Medical changes coming out just ONE DAY after Grant completed his expensive “old school” Class 2 assessment. DOH!
  • 1:39:00 – We’re going to AusFly in mid-September with the mobile studio and some new gear (watch this space :)
  • 1:40:32 – We got an email from Greg Leversher who shares his views on & experiences with aircraft ownership
  • 1:44:24 – Steven Pam sent in his thoughts on Episode 90 in a voice mail via our new Speakpipe system. You can access our Speakpipe system from our home page & our Facebook page.

Notes:
* Episode introduction by Andrea Crook from Scripts & Voices

PCDU Episode 89: RA-Aus NatFly 2012

Way back in April, Steve & ATC Ben flew “Ben Air” from Lilydale (YLIL) to Temora (YTEM) for the RA-Aus NatFly 2012 event, leaving Grant behind in Melbourne attempting to recover from bronchitis. While not as vibrant as 2011, there was still plenty of activity to keep Steve & Ben busy recording the following items:

  • 0:02:46 – Introduction to NatFly 2012
  • 0:03:25 – RA-Aus directors Steve Runcleman & Steve Tizzard discuss the event
  • 0:10:55 – Rohan Wittington talks about the amazing Petrel Amphibian
  • 0:18:28 – Chris Cabot from Wagga Air Centre discusses the Tecnam P2006T
  • 0:28:07 – Peter Wezenbeek walks us through the Wingmate Data Recorder
  • 0:33:02 – Andrew Tricket & his team will be releasing Sport Pilot TV in the very near future
  • 0:39:22 – Graeme from Stawell Aviation steps us through the Air Safaris they run
  • 0:45:51 – Chris Brandon at AirCreation Australia has some very cool trikes available (you know Grant wants to fly them, right? :)
  • 0:54:07 – Greg Robertson from Best Off Aircraft Australia had the Nynja on site for people to examine
  • 0:59:15 – Bas & Rowan from OzRunways talk about their presence at NatFly, the workshops they were running and their future plans for the software
  • 1:09:57 – Steve & Ben wrap up their NatFly 2012 experiences

ATC Ben preparing “Ben Air VH-RCR” for the great journey north

At 1:17:12 Steve, Ben & Grant have a chat about NatFly then we launch into an ATC Q&A where Ben answers questions about runway incursions plus aircraft callsigns and how ICAO handles them.

At 1:29:12 we then move into Listener Mail:

  • Lavan Ruben is a 14 year old aviation enthusiast who got to visit the 787 ZA003 at Melbourne (YMML), posting some videos on his YouTube channel: My Travels and Spotting
  • Jack Miller wrote in to say Hi and talk about his Aussie aviation blog General Aviation Australia
  • Andrew Brown writes in from the UK to say he really enjoyed the Geoff Whitty interview
  • Howard McClernon writes in to say he’s been sifting through the archives and enjoyed Lang Kidby’s talk about his flight re-enactments wwaaayyyy back in Episode 14

Temora’s making us all feel welcome

We then wrap up the episode (1:34:46) with a chat about helping to keep councillors from contemplating the closure of Kyneton airfield near Melbourne then a great shout out (at 1:36:50) to GippsAero for the first flight of their GA10 turboprop aircraft.

Notes:
* The Aus Air Services advert is provided courtesy of Star FM 94.3

PCDU Episode 86: One Fine Day at Parafield

Bas & Steve on the ramp at ParafieldThanks to the support of OzRunways, Steve was able to go to Adelaide to attend the Parafield Airshow where he spent the day with Bas recording interviews. After learning his lesson at Tyabb, Steve kept the sunscreen flowing and got through the day with a good stack of interviews & no sunburn :)

Steve’s collection of Parafield interviews includes:

  • 0:04:17 – John McArdle of the Adelaide & Parafield Airports Corporation talks about Parafield’s position in the community and its development masterplan
  • 0:10:42 – Chris Sperou walks us through his inverted ribbon cut in his Pitts S-1-11B Super Stinker
  • 0:13:54 – Flying Officer Richard Morris is Roulette #7, the commentator & ferry pilot for the RAAF Roulettes formation aerobatic demonstration team
  • 0:19:29 – Steve also chats with Sgt Dallas Young & CPL Dean Donohugh, ground crew with the RAAF Roulettes
  • 0:22:59 – Adam Butcher from True Aviators talks about the Yak52 adventure rides they’re now providing from Parafield Airport
  • 0:27:56 – David Hales from 5DME talks about their video podcast and their new projects
  • 0:36:14 – Tammy Augostin tells us about the Australian Women Pilots Association and events coming up for the South Australian & Northern Territory Branch
  • 0:42:06 – Brenton Ragless, Channel 9 Adelaide‘s weatherman, was the airshow MC and he talks about his interest in aviation and what was involved in being the voice of the airshow
  • 0:49:15 – Steve and Bas wrap up the day’s adventure

In addition to our Parafield Airshow coverage, we also bring you:

  • 0:53:40 – The latest “From Up Here to Down There” segment from Pieter Johnson in the UK. He talks with Peter Cesco, a highly experienced glider pilot & director of Fly Down Under. They work with European glider pilots (especially Germans) to give them a flying holiday in South Australia.

    You can find more of Pieter’s content on his XTP Media website and his XTP Media Facebook page.

  • 1:06:47 – We suggest that Pieter might want to follow up on the new EASA pilot certification regulations that are currently being introduced and how they may affect European pilots training here
     
  • 1:11:22 – Grant visits the B24 Liberator restoration project in Werribee and gets an update from Ron Taaffe on what’s been happening since our last visit. You can see the photos he took in the B24 Visit set on our PCDU Flickr stream
     
  • 1:17:48 – If you want to leave us a voice mail, feel free to use our new SpeakPipe service. We may even play the best ones on the show :)
     
  • Listener Drew McDonald has had to hang up his logbook but has a set of David Clark’s for sale at $200. Contact us if you’re interested in buying them.
     
  • 1:23:19 – Thanks to Josh Bullit on Facebook for his support and great story suggestions
     
  • 1:24:14 – Our friend Doug Worrall has released an eBook version of his Dragon’s of Thin Air (a great book about beating the fear of flying). Most of us know someone who’s afraid of flying, so why not support a great guy & buy a copy for them :)
     
  • Check out our updated CafePress store that’s now full of great PCDU merch featuring our new, cool “wings” logo
     
  • Be sure to sign up to our newsletter to keep up on all the PCDU updates & news

Additional music sourced from JewelBeat.

PCDU Episode 73: Oshkosh: The Greatest Show on Earth

Today Steve & Grant are chatting with Bas Scheffers, reviewing their experiences at EAA‘s AirVenture Oshkosh 2011. We talk about the long haul across the Pacific via V Australia 777 and Qantas A380, arriving in Chicago on their hottest day in 10 years and then hanging out with Rob Mark, his family and his ever watchful guard dog Simba (aka Steve’s new friend & house cat :)

From here Bas & Grant got to join the Bonanzas to Oshkosh group and fly from Rockford up to Oshkosh on the Saturday, landing on RWY 36 where even two days before the official opening, the aircraft parking spaces were filling up and the airport was a hive of activity. On the Sunday Rob, David Vanderhoof, Dan Web, Steve and his friend Mike all arrived having driven up from Chicago. Joining our friends at Firebase MyTransponder / Camp Bacon we set up the tent and settled into life in Camp Scholler, which is definitely something to be experienced at least once (& perhaps only once :)

Until we left on the Sunday at the end of the show, we were flat out experiencing the amazing sights, sounds & people that make up Oshkosh. We discuss the highlights and talk about trying to take it all in before winding up by reviewing our departure, our returns to Australia (including Steve’s flight with Milford from the FlightTime Radio show) and then our post-Oshkosh thoughts.

Titan II Control CentreFollowing this we have a recording Steve & Grant made with Rob Mark (also from CommAvia as well as JetWhine and the Airplane Geeks) before Steve presents an interview he recorded with Bill & Earlene Hankins about Bill’s time in Strategic Air Command. Titan II Launch Control PanelTowards the end of Bill’s time with SAC he was a commander of a Titan Missile complex. While some of the chat can be like watching the movies Strategic Air Command or Gathering of Eagles, his descriptions of the Titan’s launch environment are very much like those shown at the start of the movie WarGames.

Typical Titan II Launch ComplexIt also turns out that Bill and Earlene hosted Steve when he was an exchange student and then again when he returned to the USA to complete his US pilot’s licenses and instrument ratings. Titan II Combat Crew in ActionThe interview includes some discussion about N4223Q, a C172L Bill used to own and Steve got to fly a lot.

Steve's Favourite C172After all this we have a chat with Bas about the OzRunways app then mention Ryan Hothersall’s photos of the 787 and Rob Noonan’s heads up about the Australian aerobatic pilots who are getting ready for the World Aerobatic Championships in Italy later this year.Steve's favourite C172 tied down at its home base

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 63: RA-Aus NatFly 2011

Every year at Easter, Recreational Aviation Australia holds its National Fly In (NatFly). This is an event where RA-Aus members, vendors & interested folks come to meet, attend workshops, review vendor offerings, undertake test flights and show off their aircraft. Aircraft range from powered parachutes & ultralights through to home builds and the latest sport & recreational aircraft. Importers and manufacturers are present to showcase their equipment, the circuit is filled with aircraft undertaking demo flights and the local hotels & bars are filled at night with tall tales and recollections.

We were fortunate to be invited to attend along with the team from Aviation Advertiser, setting up our mobile recording studio in one of the Temora Aviation Museum’s hangars (along with their Mk VIII Spitfire and Cessna A37). We arrived on the Friday morning and departed on the Saturday evening, experiencing two very busy days packed with interviews, discussions, aircraft & equipment inspections and a couple of demo flights.

Suffice to say there was plenty of material captured and we’ve managed to squeeze the best of it into yet another very large episode. We considered splitting it over two but there’s more great content on the way on other topics so we felt it best to pack it all into one large package.

The content we present in this episode is:

We then wrap up the episode with a review of the show between Steve, Grant, Ben & Bas along with a quick chat about the OzRunways application that Bas has been developing.