Ground School: Week 3

Wow. A full week without blogging. It has been a busy, busy, week. Anyway, hopefully I’ll be able to catch everyone up on what’s been going on once things have settled down again.

Back to ground school. The drive was long than expected again. Caltrans (or whoever) has closed PCH down to one lane in each direction. Of course, people don’t know how to merge, so most of the drive in was at about 5 mph. Once we were down to one lane it was up to 40. Based on the throughput, I’d expect the two lane traffic to be going about 20. It never works out like that though, so we ended up getting to class about 15 min. late.

The Santa Monica College extension building was closed today, so the instructor arranged for us to have our class at American Flyers, a local flight school. It was pretty cool because we got to take a tour and check out a Cessna 172.

One of the weird things is that they have a simulator setup for their students to use for practicing. The simulator runs Microsoft Flight Simulator, the same software I have on my home computer, but their simulator has fancy, realistic, controls. I’m sure it’s useful, but I think they said that they charge $45/hr. I only paid $30 for my home edition. I have a hard time believing that their simulator is really worth that much more. I think I’ll stick to playing with my simulator at home and save my money for real time in the air.

In class we covered Chapter 3 on how planes fly. It starts with the basic four forces, gets into stalls and spins, then covers basic maneuvers. I’d really like to have a college level text on aerodynamics to add some depth to the reading.