Sunday, April 30, 2006

Rain day.....

Regarding the post with the kite stuff in it, you might want to check this site, and look here for sure!!

I've been working on this one for a while. First, Jenny can you teach how to use this Photoshop thing??? I was able to get the red elipses in the photo to show the bullet marks, but the text is a pain!! I got some in, but can't seem to edit it or move it or make lines and arrows pointing from text to elipse. I really think the 3D solid modeling program I use at work was eaier to learn. There is nothing intuitive about this! Nuff' said.

By the way, Peg and I went to visit younguns' Friday evening. Here's Hailee yelling at Dad.

Anyway.... Next, the content: one day while I was working in the Lodge, I noticed that the West main-room window was broken on the outside. Big hole broken in outer layer of the thermopane! My first thought was that a bird had hit the window, but it would have to have been a crow, or something!! I went outside to investigate and found a few clues..... note the chipped jamb on the left side. Note the dent on the right jamb. And, of course, check out the lead bullet remains on the outer sill!!!

Here's Hailee, ready for action. She's got alot of energy, between naps that is.

Anyway, my flawless logic told me that a bullet (.22 cal.) had struck the building. The striking bullet imparted enough energy to break the glass, yet ricochetted off the glass and ended up outside the window. The only gunfire from that direction would be from the porch of the house toward the trees growing along the lilac row. Not sure who, but someone had been waging undeclared war with red squirrels in those trees.

Havin' some fun now!!!

Anyway, the bullet that hit the lodge must have struck a branch, or tree trunk, which altered it's course by about 40°!!! So here is a little lesson in bullets and such, boys and girls. Things don't always behave as we wish them to. So not only should you be aware of what lies beyond your target, be aware of the entire surrounding area!

It looks like Hailee is liking that granny of hers. Granny talks better baby talk than the baby....... but then who doesn't?? We stayed around long enough on Saturday to go out for breakfast at the 21/13 Retaurant. Or was it the 13/21??/ Hmmm.... Hailee and Carlo both took a little nap on the way to the place, Hailee slept through the last bit of breakfast, but Carlo managed to wait til we got home to the couch.....
Looks like Yram has been doing some birding lately. She sent a few pics and here are the Snowy Egret and Ruddy Duck that she photographed.

And look at what those darling daughters of mine have gotten me for an early father's day gift!!! The FAA's sectional charts do not go by state, but are sectioned off in rectangular chunks, but Wisconsin DOT makes one specific to Wisconsin and they make it in this wall sized version. Perfect for the office at work, where I seem to spend the bulk of my waking moments.....

Airplane update:

The patch cord for connecting radio to intercom system has arrived.

Power cord for connecting radio directly to plane power has arrived.

The new fuel pump awaits at the hangar, and I have some clamps and pipe fitting compound at the ready.

Carl reports that he has located the log books for the plane. The previous owner still has them, he is sending to Carl and Carl will forward to me. These log books are necessary for the airworthiness inspection.

All paperwork for the airworthiness inspection is completed and sent for processing (that is if Steve has received his reg. cert).

Once that inspection is completed, I will be looking to relocate the plane to Phillips ASAP. That way, I can go early mornings and fly for an hour or so before work, or any evening after work can be used for flying if weather co-operates. I told Steve not to be offended, but I was looking forward in a big way to getting out of Merrill. I just can't stand the drive over and back, and I would rather put that extra gas in the plane.....

Please submit your material for the anniversary edition of the blog. I will need a little time to put it together, you know, and the date for that edition is May 30, 2006!!!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Tuesday scoop.

Things just get stranger as we go..... Today I got to Merrill at 4:45, did my preflight inspection, filled the fuel tank and was just hooking up the radio as Steve pulled up to the hangar. I joked about the flat tire we had Sunday and pointed out that it was holding air now. The plan for tonight was to get my Ultralight pilot flight test done, then I would finish the evening on my own cruising about. I had forgotten about the ultalight stuff. When I started this training, it was with ultralights in mind and Steve was not a CFI for Sport Pilot anyway. Well he is now, and I need to complete the Ultralight test stuff so the hours of dual instruction we logged can be used to fulfill the sport pilot requirements.

Fuel pump below.
So we got buckled in, started up the Flightstar and headed for the taxiway. We hadn't gone far and we could smell gas..... crap, the fuel pump that had quit leaking had started to leak again! #$%%$&*! What next? We headed back to the hangar and stood there looking at the general vicinity of the fuel pump that you cannot see without getting into a full lotus position balanced on your left shoulder in the passenger seat. Or doing a handstand on a chair..... I was thinking "I just need to get a new fuel pump and be done with it." and Steve said, "Personally, I think you should get a new fuel pump." So we tore it out and pondered about who might stock this kind of thing. We hauled out a parts catalog for planes and found the item. $40. Surprised it wasn't about a hunnert. So I'm discouraged again when Steve says maybe I should take the flight test in his Quicksilver (pictured above). I said O.K. and I did the inspection while Steve poured some liquid gold into the fuel tank. We headed out and it felt strange to be in that plane again. I wondered if I would be able to land O.K., do the minimum controllable airspeed and the simulated engine failure landing???? Well, it went great and it was a beautiful evening with an excellent sunset. Made my day. So now I have everything I need to send in for my USUA official pilot certificate and de-coder ring. It'll only be an additional $25 . No comment.

I got home here and immediatly did some online research on this pump thingie. One of the guys in the nearby hangars had a new fuel pump of this type but it is a 6 PSI max. pump and the one in the plane was a 2.5-4.5 PSI pump. So I don't know if this higher pressure one will be O.K. Will need to call Flightstar tomorrow and find out. Blah, blah blah, yadda zip dah.......
Now I'm having a beer and typing. We could call this a blahg, if'n yanow wad eye mene.

I gotta go, Carlo

Monday, April 24, 2006

Happy anniverary, well, almost...

Hmm.... I just noticed that May 30th will be the 1 year anniverary of this blog. Anyone want to contribute to that momentous post??? Email me anything you may want to include, O.K.? There's an email link in the right sidebar...

I gotta go, Carlo

Allright, allready!!

I have been falling behind on this blog.
Last week I spent most evenings studying for the blasted knowledge written test. On Saturday morning at 10:00 I went to Tomahawk Regional airport to take the test, which is done via a computer testing company that is tied to the FAA. The test is downloaded, done on the compter and scored via computer and computer records are established and stored somewhere, I hope on an F16.....
I got a 95 which means two wrong answers out of 40 questions. You need 70% to pass, so you can get 12 wrong and still be O.K. There is a ton of information to be read, studied and understood, and the questions touch on a little of everything, each test download is different so you don't know what things will be asked, just that there is a ton of junk to remember.
After the test, I went to Merrill (for about the 2000th time, it seems) to get some more dimensions for the weight and balance calculations which I completed tonight. Found a slow leak at the fuel pump on the plane but could not determine the cause, got a headache and went home about 4:00. Sunday morning I left home at 14:00 Zulu to go to Merrill (2001st)to work on plane. Steve and I both had new tires to put on, and I had to fix that fuel leak. I messed with the fuel pump, took it off the plane, managed to tighten some fittings and got it to stop leaking. Took a couple of hours. Helped Steve raise the back of his plane about 11" to level flight attitude so we could measure the distance from the datum (front wheel axle on his plane) to the leading edge of wing. More info for weight and balance. Steve wrestled with his tubeless tires for a few hours and finally got them done. I managed to pinch an inner tube while re-assembling my split rims, so the tire went flat. I had to make a trip to Fleet Farm in Wausau to get a new tube!! Grrr..... finally got everything done at about 6:30. Too pooped and frazzled to consider flying. Too bad, cause the wind quit and it was a great evening. Oh, well.
So now we need to get the rest of the paperwork done to arrange the airwortiness inspection. Found out that this process will probably take about three weeks. It just never ends!
I have some other news and photos to post and will do that when I get time. Maybe later this week.

I gotta go, Carlo

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

I need more sleep.....

Looks like this upload thing is finally working!! So here goes. (I'm supposed to be studying for my pilot written test, but this has to get done, too. I read inbetween photo uploads.....)
First, here are a few pics of the newest family member, Paul and Candice's new babe... and Jen manages to get some exposure as well....

The next photo op came last Sunday when Bryn was here and Peggy handed out her anual Easter baskets which included a kite. So the kite was assembled, launched, de-treed, flown and crashed, etc.

Peg was the official launcher and rescue worker. She was kept busy and maintained a quite pleasant attitude through it all. I had the hard job of advising and photographing the event.

All's well that ends well, I guess.

Here are a few pics of the early spring beginnings. The woods is an interesting mix of tiny leaves on the aspen, and multiple shades of red and purple buds. Lots of catkins, too.

The maple in the back yard looks quite festive.

All covered with these huge flowery buds.

Cool looking things, eh?

Ground school is done, with the last session being last Thursday. Some of the people have already taken the Sport Pilot knowledge test, I'm scheduled for next Saturday morning. I'm reserving the next few nights for studying and doing practice tests. I went to Merrill last night and worked on getting the plane read for it's airworthyness inspection. I need to get that done soon, because I received my registration card in the mail, and now the plane is technically not able to be flown until the inspection gets done. What next??? So I installed the ELT (emergency locator transmitter) and it's control gizmo got installed in the cockpit area. This device is required by the FAA and supposedly will help search and rescue workers find you if the plane crashes.

Here is the bracket that came with the ELT and the wood adaptor I made to fit the curve of the frame tube.
Anyway, in a crash, the jolt of hitting terra firma will cause the ELT to start sending distress signals on an emergency frequency. You have to mount this thing so the mounting will withstand the shock of crashing. So this ELT is supposed to survive an airplane crash, yet on the box it was shipped in, it says "Delicate instruments. Do not drop!!" What??? If you can't drop it, how will it survive a crash? Go figure...... so here is the fabric opened up behind the cab, with the ELT (big orange thing)in place and the new antennae mount rivited on just to the right.

Steve showed up at the hangar and helped me get the plane onto three precision scales, one under each wheel. Then we leveled the plane to flight attitude, drained the gas, and recorded the weight figures shown on the scales. These numbers will be used to calculate the weight and balance specifications. Thes calcs are necessary for, you guessed it, the airworthiness inspection. Then I put all the placards on the plane (labels for what things are and how they work), and installed the fire-proof identification plate on the main frame. Now I'm pretty much ready for the inspection except for paper work. Oh, yeah, and some new tires. Eh???

I gotta go, Carlo

Monday, April 10, 2006

How's this for a Monday night news story?

This is what it looks like.....

No date has been set, but hoping for fall of 2006. That's my idea, anyway. Otterbabe has posting priviledges, so maybe she has something to say about it all. Maybe by tomorrow or the next day she'll have second thoughts. I hope not.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

BIG Changes......

O.K., moderate changes. Maybe small changes, depending on your viewpoint...
Ol' dumb-head Carlo finally figured out how to let people comment with-out having to go through that sign-up process! Now you can just click 'Anonymous' and type away. You will still have to go through the 'word verification' gig, as that is the only way to keep spammers and other jerks from dumping loads of junk in here. And we don't want that, do we?????

Short update on things around the Lodge. Spring has sprung, the snow is gone, the gravel from plowing the road has revealed itself (all over the lawn), and the Yellowstone-esque mudpots and sinkholes have appeared in the drive. Who cares, it's warming up!!
I've got a particularily busy week comning up. But let's back up a moment. Saturday I was able to get to Merrill and put the new muffler mount on the plane. I hope this is not a recurring problem, but it wasn't a big deal to fix. The dealer sent one gratis, so that is good. So that meant I spent a while on Saturday doing a bunch of solo landings at the airport. That was fun and it went well. Seeing as how I need to build some solo hours so I can get this plane moved to Phillips, I decided to head to Merrill Sunday morning, with the plan of getting airborn before sunrise. We can fly from the beginning of civil twilight in the morning til the end of civil twilight in the evening. You can find the definition of civil twilight here. Guess who forgot his aviaton radio??? And didn't discover that fact until he was a few miles East of Spirit??? Back for the radio, didn't get into the air until 7:15. (I had gotten up at 4:50 in the A. of M.!!)
Flew to Wausau where I did three touch and go landings, then headed back to Merrill, flying at 5,300' MSL (above sea level). Stopped in at the Merrill airport and grabbed my GPS, a drink of water and a bathroom stop, and headed to Antigo, about 25 miles to the east. I had never been there before, but I had looked at this site, so I knew what the field looked like. Just click on "Antigo" (or where-ever) in the list to see that airport. I also had my GPS loaded with the latitude/longitude numbers, so it was easy to find and plan a landing. I did two touch and go landings there and then headed back to Merrill. So I got 2.5 hours logged this morning before the wind started to kick up.
Tuesday evening will be the last regular class session for our ground school. Will get home about 11:00 P.M. and need to get up at about 4:00 A.M. on Wednesday to go turkey hunting. Ivan and I both got first season permits, so we are taking off work on Wed.-Friday to hunt, maybe go fishing, and just generally be out of work for a while. Thursday is the final night of school, with tests and review, etc, so will get home late again.... mind you, I'm not complaining, because all of this is of my own doing.
That's about it for now, I just heard the clothes dryer buzzer, so I need to get on with my chores.
Yram, we are having lots of sunny days while you are having all rain..... (just don't forget our snow).


Sunday, April 02, 2006

Clocks advanced? They are here!!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Coolers and groupies....

Some of you will remember the following photo:

This was posted in December when Carlo made the effort to send prime venison loin, delectable fish fillets and apple pie to the inhabitants of the western reaches of the territory. You will notice that the cooler is of substantial size, able to hold gallon and 1/2 gallon containers of ice, packages of meat and fish, and even a full sized pie...... with room to spare.

Here is what was sent home with Lucy!! An Igloo playmate cooler capable of holding 18, you heard me right, 18 cans. We all know how long a playmate will keep ice....

So what do you think? Who got the better of that deal?????

Here are a few pix of the Heart breakers in action.....

Angie sits in on a few numbers as the bass player.


Carlo in action.

A wild looking bassist....

Wondering in Wisconsin,

April fools day.

Well, folks, Lucy has returned to the Northwoods!! She arrived today, Saturday, with Kate.

I guess the picture thing is working, so here goes. These are old by two weeks, but the following are the pictures are from the birthday bash. First, Carlo devotes many hours to preparing the famous spaghetti sauce.

This year we managed to document the year! No calendar near the festivies, so R&B made the little sign.

We had a scrabble game and at one point Rosie had these letters on her tray!! (Boyfriend is ID.)

Including this as a memorial.... Buck passed on last Saturday, the same day that the Heartbreakers kicked off the new season. We played "Tiger By the Tail" as a tribute.

Well, Hailee is learning to eat cereal.... sort of. I remember well the days of trying to feed Rose and Bryn when they were pints. Yikes, what a mess they could make!!

Relaxing after dinner.

Pa and the youngun'

See ya later. I'll try to be a little more consistant with the posting. Carlo