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Aviation News

Your Mind, Your Ailerons and Your Life

Looking over the flight controls is one of the important tasks that a pilot performs just prior to taking to the air and the extent of your effort here might be a good judge of your overall thoroughness as a pilot.

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You Can't Get There From Here: On Going (and Being) Direct

Whenever we fly from point A to point B, many of us use the Victor airway system, and we pick a route that offers us the smallest increase beyond a great circle distance, or the highest groundspeed ... and these days, perhaps the widest berth from unfriendly airspace. In addition, particularly in the IFR world, there's often more to it.

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Which Altitude?

As VFR pilots, we should first consider the terrain elevation and then the wind when we select an altitude to fly, but then there is that confusing Even/Odd plus 500 question. It may be more complicated -- and more important -- than you think...

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When Your Engine's Intake Clogs

Airplane engines suck. Pistons move up and down (or in horizontally opposed engines, in and out) and create tremendous suction that draws air in through the induction system. Although some engines benefit somewhat from "ram air" induction, and others have turbochargers to boost the airflow, all depend primarily on this internal suction to draw air in for combustion.

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What's That Smell?

Whether your plane has rubber bladders to hold the fuel, a wet wing, or a metal tank inside the wing, fuel leaks can result in in-flight fires or a loss of engine power.

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