Sunday, October 27, 2013

Frosty wings and a slice of pie

Plane: Cessna 150
Route: 40I-I74-40I
Weather: Clear, 46 degrees, wind calm

Yesterday, I asked around (i.e. posted on Facebook) if anyone wanted to fly to breakfast this morning. A group (also on Facebook - common theme today) of Ohio pilots made plans to converge on Urbana. There would be a couple guys I know from the Columbus area, Lenny and Dave, along with plenty of other nice folks in airplanes. Anyway, Gary - who I met in Newark a couple months ago - responded that he wanted to tag along, so he drove down and met me at Stewart this morning.

Guess I can add 'Manual Deicer' to my resume

I soon ran into a wrench thrown into my plans to make it to Urbana by 9:30 - there was a ton of frost and ice on the airplane. We eventually came to the conclusion that there must have been a bit of freezing rain or mist that fell overnight, as there was a thick layer on the entire plane. The only solution was sunlight, scrubbing with the Official Deicing Brooms™ and plenty of patience. It was nearly 9:45 before the plane was ready to go and the cold engine was warmed up and running in the green.

I'm not sure why the altitude didn't record correctly on the way home

Still, there was no reason to scrub the flight. It was a beautiful morning so we'd absolutely be flying, even if our breakfast plans didn't work out. So we flew north direct Urbana as I pointed out many of the sights in the area to Gary - downtown Dayton, WPAFB, the Air Force Museum, even downtown Columbus, which we spotted rising on the horizon from over 50 miles away.

I touched down quite softly on Runway 20 and we were parked on the ramp before 10:30. There was no time for a full breakfast but we chatted with Dave and Lenny for a few. Dave brought his just-painted RV-12, which is even more gorgeous in person than in all the photos. Gary was kind enough to buy us each a slice of black raspberry pie from the Airport Cafe so at least we got a little nourishment in Urbana!

Soon after, we were back in the 150, ready to fly back to Stewart. Someone had the airplane at 11:00 so we couldn't dawdle; we did get back a few minutes late but it didn't interfere with their lesson, thankfully. Gary and I chatted on the way home about locating airports and other flying stuff. His flight training's still on hold but I'm pretty sure he'll finish and get his license one of these days. You can just tell when flying's in someone's blood and they'll do anything to make the dream come true. Gary's one of those guys.

Flight Track: Google Earth KMZ File 
Today's Flight: 1.5 hours
Total Time: 294.0 hours


  1. RV waterline antifreeze......I used that on 08Romeo when it was covered in frost. By the time you finish up your preflight and sump the tanks the frost is running off the control surfaces.

    1. Yeah, I asked if they had any fluid to speed things up but they told me they don't use it when the entire airplane's covered. So, we went the sunlight route. It didn't take too long once we turned the plane the right direction.

      That said, airplanes shouldn't be painted white! Blue sure thaws out faster... ;-)

  2. I have to confess, "official deicing broom" made me cringe and wonder about the paint. But maybe that's just me. After years of being in a hangar, I know I'm spoiled - I've never had to deal with ice or frost on an airplane in a decade of flying.

    I am glad to know that you're holding a broomstick in that photo. When I first saw it, I wondered what kind of magic deeper-on-the-inside-than-the-outside fuel tanks you had on that 150 that required such a lengthy fuel stick!

    1. I can imagine! Don't think it would be the norm for most non-rentals.