Monday, July 24, 2006

In the air again!

Last Saturday, I finally found time to repair my MX and go flying. A couple of weeks ago, I replaced my fan shaft bearings again, this time with the required spacers that go between the inner races of the bearings. I had been having a problem with bearing failure after about 2 hours. I had this happen twice. After I explained the problem on the Quicksilver Yahoo group, Mark Smith asked if I used the spacers. Duh, No.... If I had been paying attention, I would have realized the importance of those little thin pieces of metal that just appeared after I removed the shaft! Sometimes I can really be an idiot!

Anyway, we went flying for about 45 minutes right around the airport. I wanted to make sure I didn't have any issues with the bearings or any other part of the engine before straying too far. The last time I went flying was on Good Friday in April. It much hotter around here now and although I know about density altitude, it's really amazing how the hot weather affects performance. It takes much longer at full throttle to reach a safe altitude.

I ascended above the airport to about 2000 feet (estimated). I was right at the flat bottoms of the sparse clouds and it got cooler and bumpier, so I throttled back and descended to pattern altitude and did about 4 touch-n-go's before landing an putting the MX back in the hangar. In just the 45 minutes I was in the air, cloud cover went to sparse with little vertical activity to 50% with thousands of feet of rising vapor. Of course, later in the day it rained, but I didn't care, we needed the rain and I already got my flying time in! Time to plan for a bit longer trip next time!