24 September 2013

My Last Flight

by André Durocher, COPA Flight 8

Last Saturday, I started my engine. Black smoke then fire appears around the cowling. I continue cranking and the fire stopped. Then, while taxing my turn coordinator stopped working and on take-off my airspeed was showing zero. Then, the vaccum pump and my radio went dead. Landed in Gatineau with no left brake. Took off from Gatineau and my engine quit at 400-500' AGL. Landed at the end of the runway and stopped in the grass. I managed to restart the engine and took off on runway 09 with 10 kts tailwind. Once in the downwind the visibilty went down to 2 miles. I found the downwind for 09 in Rockcliffe (the wind shifts 180 degrees!!). Before turning base, the engine quit, again, landed short of the runway but we walked away.

It was lots of fun, I learned a lot from my instructor in the Red Bird simulator in Rockcliffe.

I plan to do it again!

17 September 2013

New Pontiac Airpark Video

Pontiac Airpark has a newly produced promotional video that shows an animation of what the development will look like as it is completed.

Pontiac Airpark is a new residential airpark that is being built by COPA Flight 8 member André Durocher in the Pontiac region of Quebec, just to the west of Ottawa on the north side of the Ottawa River.

The animation shows views of the airpark from above and from ground level with cockpit views arriving and departing from the main runway. It also depicts many of the planned amenities and gives a good idea what it will look like in the future.

The video runs for 4:21 and can be found on on You Tube.

More information:

05 September 2013

ForeFlight gets FSS wrong in Canada


ForeFlight is a truly big improvement over all those paper charts, the CFS and Canada Air Pilot. Wow a pile of paper is replaced by your iPad! But there is at least one or two gotchas for pilots using ForeFlight in Canada.

One relates to Flight Service Station (FSS) information at some Canadian airports. The screen capture above shows the Flight Service Station (FSS) information for Ottawa’s Macdonald-Cartier International Airport (CYOW). I marked the problems with red arrows. At the first  arrow we see “Radio 126.7”. Wrong! Canadian pilots likely know that FSS is unlikely to reply on 126.7, rather if you want to contact a FSS in the Ottawa area call Quebec Radio on 123.15 from CYOW or 123.37 from CYND. What is worse is the next red arrow points to another “Radio 123.5”, oops ForeFlight, you are wrong again! That frequency will not get you any FSS, rather it is Rockcliffe’s (CYRO) and Les Cedars’ Unicom frequency. So far ForeFlight has batted zero on FSS!

Also, ForeFlight fails to identify the call sign of the FSS by simply calling them Radio. Pilots need to know the  call sign of the FSS e.g., “Quebec Radio” in the Ottawa area.

Now look at the next two red arrows, both pointing  under the heading of Other Frequencies to FSS in the USA, specifically Burlington Radio. Oops ForeFlight, Ottawa is in Canada and we use Canadian FSS! These problems area at many Canadian airports. As well Mandatory Frequency (MF) locations, such as Gatineau (CYND) and Kingson (CYGK) are also shown poorly in ForeFlight, almost guaranteeing their MF status will be missed.

My second complaint is the suggestion that ForeFlight provides CFS information. Well, yes it does, but not all CFS entries are there. Staying with Ottawa, where are the CFS pages showing Ottawa Airspace and VFR call up points? Same is true for Kingston (CYGK). There are more CFS pages for most major airports than are shown in ForeFlight.

For that matter where are the CFS pages showing FIC and ATC frequencies and remote communication outlets? Can’t get to those using ForeFlight, or at least I can’t see how. Sure they show up by accident if you know which airport to check. Try looking for London FIC frequencies. It is there if you know to look up Chapeskie Field (CLC2). Why does it not show up under London (CYXU)? The CFS has an inch of chart supplement material dealing with obstructions etc. near the back. How do I get at that information in ForeFlight? I guess I still need to buy the CFS!

Not that there aren’t things to like about ForeFlight, it’s just too misleading, incomplete and potentially unsafe in Canada.

2013 CAHS National Convention Silent Auction


The 2013 CAHS National Convention & Annual General Meeting - "The Big Five O" - will take place from 11-15 September 2013 in Ottawa-Gatineau. Due to the generosity of corporate and individual donors, CAHS National is able to hold a silent auction at the 2013 convention!

Viewing will begin on Wednesday 11 September 2013 during the reception and items will be on display during the day Thursday 12 September and up until noon on Friday 13 September. Winners will be announced at the end of lunch on 13 September.

How does one participate? There will be bidding sheets for each item. Just put your name and bid amount down on the items you want. Keep checking back throughout the convention to see if you have been outbid in order to place another higher bid. There are no limits on the number of times you can bid or the number of items you can try to win. The highest bidder for each item at the close of the auction will be declared the winner.

So bring your cheque book; empty out your piggy banks; check those sofa cushions for extra change, and come prepared to take home some great deals on some great items! Many thanks to the following donors for their generous contributions!

List of Silent Auction Items

Each item represents a separate auction.

  • Air North (Yukon's Airline) - One $200 gift certificate for airfare on any route, two $100 gift certificates for airfare on any route
  • Aviaeology - Canadian Aircraft of WWI by Carl Vincent, Dragons on Birds Wings: The Combat History of the 812th Fighter Air Regiment, Early Canadian Military Aircraft Volume 1
  • Canadian Aviation Hall of Fame - They Led the Way (3 volume set with 2013 updates)
  • Frontenac House - Yukon Wings (by R.B. Cameron)
  • Harbour Air Seaplanes - $360 gift certificate for round trip on the Vancouver to Victoria route
  • Laskin Publishing - Editorial Evaluation of a manuscript of up to 50,000 words (up to five pages in length)
  • LCMSDS (Wilfrid Laurier University) - 3 Battlefield Tour Guides (First World War), 4 Battlefield Tour Guides (Second World War), 3 Battlefield Tour Guides (Italy), 3 Battlefield Tour Guides (Normandy, France, & Belgium/Netherlands/Germany), 1-Year Subscription to Canadian Military History (4 issues) plus 4 back issues (past year)
  • CAHS Vancouver Chapter - CAHS Journal set from 1990 to 2012 (92 issues)
  • Allan Botting (artist) - Framed Print: "Andy's Spitfire"
  • Alistair Reeves - 2 Avro Arrow Pencils originally owned and used by Avro design engineer Ross Richardson
  • Chris Terry (collector) - Framed Print: "Banshees over Bonaventure" by Steve Snide (Number 162 of 200), 11 other unframed prints/posters
  • Danielle Metcalfe-Chenail - For the Love of Flying (signed copy of the book, pen, mug, and silver airplane desk clock)
  • Helene Girard (artist) - Unframed Print: "Friendly Giant", Unframed Print: "Winter Blues", Unframed Print: "Peaceful"
  • Sydney Baker - My 53 Years in Civil Aviation

To attend this year's Convention, simply download and complete the Registration Form and Schedule of Fees and return with your cheque to the address indicated. You can also check the Program of Events.

You can also find the registration form and more information on CAHS website under "Events".