29 April 2016

Vintage Wings Launches Newsletter

Vintage Wings, the private flying museum located at Gatineau Executive Airport, has launched a new newsletter to improve communications with everyone interested in the goings-on at the museum.

Vintage Wings explained the need for a new newsletter, saying:

This inaugural edition of the Vintage Wings of Canada newsletter, ‘The Roundel’, marks the beginning of a larger effort by Vintage Wings to provide everyone with regular and up to date information. Our intent with this first issue is alert you to important activities around the hangar, including updates on the aircraft, a heads up on upcoming activities, and some information on how you can enhance your experience with us.

The PDF-format newsletter is supplied free and anyone can sign up for notification of the availability of future issues.

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22 April 2016

Woodcomp SR-3000 propeller blade looseness

From Transport Canada

In a recent event, an amateur-built Pipistrel Virus SW experienced a severe vibration while cruising at approximately 1600 feet above ground level. The pilot reduced the engine power and the vibration was reduced. The pilot steered the aircraft towards an abandoned aerodrome, shut down the engine and deployed the ballistic parachute. The aircraft descended to the Aerodrome and landed upright on the wheels. The pilot was uninjured. Shortly after the pilot exited the aircraft, the deployed chute was caught by a gust of wind and the aircraft was pulled inverted to where it came to rest.

The examination of the aircraft revealed that one blade of the propeller, manufactured by Woodcomp, model SR3000, had detached. The remaining propeller blade, hub, and blade root of the detached blade were sent to the TSB Laboratory for further analysis.

The TSB Laboratory determined that fatigue cracks, likely assisted by corrosion, had developed in the bosses of both blade roots of the occurrence propeller. In the root boss of the blade that detached, the crack had caused the separation of the blade.

A similar crack was growing in the remaining root boss but did not cause blade separation because a short segment (about 8%) of the boss circumference still remained unbroken. Fatigue cracking was a result of looseness in the blade root (retainer, bearings, hub assemblies).

Corrosion due to moisture penetration accelerated the growth of the fatigue crack. All 3 bearings that were examined (2) pitch bearings and the detached blade rear bearing exhibited distress of the rolling contact surfaces due to moisture penetration. In addition, the inward race of the rear bearings of both blades was made from a softer material, resulting in its significant deterioration.

The propeller, model SR3000, was acquired new with the aircraft kit. By the time of the present occurrence it was in service for about 11 months and accumulated about 235 hours since new.

All owners are reminded that STD 625, Appendix C, paragraph 6, requires the following:

Fixed Pitch and Ground Adjustable Propellers:

(a) Fixed pitch wooden propellers shall be checked for tightness after the first 25 hours of air time following their installation and at each subsequent inspection (amended 2007/12/30);

(b) At intervals of not more than 5 years, the propeller shall be removed from the aircraft and inspected for corrosion or other defects over its entire surface, including the hub faces and the mounting hole bores. While the propeller is removed, it shall also be checked for correct dimensions. However, if defects which require repairs beyond those recommended as field repairs by the propeller manufacturer are found, the propeller shall be repaired by an organization approved for the overhaul of propellers (amended 2007/12/30).

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19 April 2016

Book Review - World Directory of Light Aviation

  • World Directory of Light Aviation
  • by Willi Tacke (Publisher), et al
  • Published by Flying-Pages Europe SARL, Flying Pages GmbH
  • 210 X 297 mm, A4 magazine format, perfect binding
  • 282 pages, including an index
  • US$16.99

The World Directory of Light Aviation (WDLA) is more of a magazine format directory than a true book, but if you are shopping for a new aircraft, engine or avionics, or are just interested in what is new in aviation, then, regardless of format, this publication is essential.

The WDLA has been an annual publication for some years now and was originally called the World Directory of Leisure Aviation, but it grew too big and was split into two separate publications, the World Directory of Light Aviation, which covers mostly powered aviation and the World Directory of Free Flight (WDFF), which covers paragliders, paramotors, hang gliders, powered parachutes and other forms of foot-launched and related flight.

The WDLA is published by a large team of writers and researchers working in conjunction with the publisher, Flying Pages Europe. There are four separate editions published in English, French, German and Chinese.

The publication has listings for over 1000 aircraft, a quite remarkable number, illustrating the global scope of the publication. The WDLA is advertiser-supported and the pages feature aviation ads from many of the leading manufacturers. I didn't see any ads from non-aviation advertisers.

The WDLA is divided into a number of chapters, each with their own tab colour for quick flipping:

  • Red tab - Fixed Wings/LSA, edited by Marino Boric, covers European microlights, light-sport aircraft and advanced ultralights
  • Orange tab - Homebuilts, edited by Roy Besswenger and Marino Boric, covers homebuilts including plans-built and kit-builts
  • Mauve tab - Certified aircraft, edited by Dave Unwin and Marino Boric, covers certified production aircraft
  • Light blue tab - UL Motorgliders, edited by Marino Boric, covers ultralight gliders and powered gliders
  • Light blue tab - Certified motorgliders, edited by Xin Gou, covers powered and unpowered gliders
  • Dark purple tab - Gyroplanes, edited by Werner Pfaendler, covers manufactured and kit gyroplanes
  • Light Purple tab - Helicopters, edited by Werner Pfaendler, covers kit and certified helicopters
  • Dark blue tab - Trikes, edited by Dimitri Delemarle, covers hang glider-winged ultralight trikes
  • Green tab - Instruments, edited by Robby Bayerl, covers aircraft instruments of all kinds
  • Periwinkle tab - Motors, covers all the aircraft powerplants available, in table format for quick comparisons, with a special section for electric powerplants
  • Sky blue tab - Suppliers and Services, listing manufacturers of everything for aviation from floats, helmets, propellers, radios, rescue parachutes, wheels and tires, plus a list of importers for each brand. Finally there is an index of manufacturers, aircraft and advertisers

There are introductory articles to the publication overall, describing current trends in aviation, plus also introductions for each aircraft section, with more detail on what is new in the world of LSAs, gyroplanes, helicopters, etc.

The aircraft sections feature five entries per page in a standardized "box" format. Each entry provides a photo, a text description of the aircraft and its manufacturer, its regulatory category, the manufacturer's contact information and website, basic specifications, such as empty weight, gross weight, wing span, fuel tank size, engine, horsepower, seats, maximum speed, cruising speed, stall speed, climb rate, certification and prices. Since this is a European publication, the specifications are in metric. The prices are for the country of origin and thus may be in US dollars, pounds sterling or Euros.

The WDLA is affiliated with and carries the logos of Flying China, Vol Moteur, Flugel das magazin, Powered Sport Flying, The British Microlight Aircraft Association, the Experimental Aircraft Association, Paramoteur+ and Parapente+.

New editions of the WDLA and its sister publication, WDFF, come out each year, in updated form. They can be found on the shelves of some Canadian aviation booksellers and magazine stands, but they can also be ordered directly from the publisher's website.

Overall the WDLA is a great publication that will appeal to the the aircraft shopper, but also to anyone who wants to keep up with what is happening in the world of general and recreational aviation. It will also appeal to aviation enthusiasts, both young and older, just the thing to curl up with in a quiet chair on a low-IFR day!

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07 April 2016

Museum Gets Vintage Hercules

The Canada Aviation and Space Museum at Rockcliffe, in Ottawa has a new acquisition. On Tuesday 05 April 2016 the RCAF delivered its last remaining Lockheed CC-130E Hercules to the museum.

This "E" model Herc, serial 130307, was in service for 51 years and accumulated more than 30,000 airframe hours before being retired from the fleet. This particular "E" model was last operated by 424 Transport & Rescue Squadron, based at 8 Wing, CFB Trenton. The "E" model was an upgrade to the previous "B" model, with the additional of more fuel in wing-mounted external tanks for more range.

There are still older "E" model Hercs in service elsewhere in the world and the RCAF continues to operate newer "H" and "J" models, so the Hercules has not disappeared from Canadian skies quite yet.

Hercules 307 is now at the museum at Rockcliffe airport and will be soon displayed there for the public to have a look at.

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