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Old 12-13-2015, 09:00 PM
flyenforfun's Avatar
flyenforfun flyenforfun is offline
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Wilmington DE
Posts: 325
Default Re-learning old lessons

I've been flying since 1989 I was a flight instructor through the 90s and it's amazing to me how every once in a while you relearn an old was a beautiful day 70° in December so I thought I would bring out the RV-8 for short flight. Doing the pre-flight I got distracted by a man asking me questions about my airplane and of course I'm a talker so I answered his questions and then moved on. Putting gas into the airplane I got distracted again by a new pilot asking pilot asking questions about the RV and complementing me on how well It looked. Again I was distracted from the task at hand. I had reeled up the fuel hoses and got my receipt then another plane pulled up behind me to get gas at the pumps so I rushed I got in the airplane started the engine and started to move forward and out of the corner of Me eye I saw the orange ground cable that was still connected to my exhaust pipe I promptly shut down the airplane an unstrapped myself and got out and remove the ground cable. I don't think anything would've happened it probably would've just put in the ground wire off however there were other possibilities like I could've ripped the ground strap and flew with the ground wire hanging behind me at any rate something happen but it just reminded me to pay attention and don't be distracted by others. So pay attention.
Matt Giordano Sr. and Jr.
RV-8 - N861MM
Wilmington, DE

Last edited by flyenforfun : 12-15-2015 at 04:49 AM.
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Old 12-13-2015, 09:34 PM
Infidel's Avatar
Infidel Infidel is offline
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: WV22
Posts: 849

I think the clamp would've released, granted it was clear of the prop. The distractions/interruptions has happened to a lot of us. I've been caught and inquiried while refueling and I make a point to either stay focused on what I'm doing, politely, or stop completely. But the older I'm getting, the more I realize I need to make a checklist for my checklist.

When I see other guys hop in and start up, forgetting to remove the wheel chock, I don't feel so bad.
RV-4 0320\D3G 160, Whirlwind 200GA 70".
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Old 12-13-2015, 09:59 PM
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wjb wjb is offline
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Half Moon Bay, CA
Posts: 1,121

Distractions are evil. I was preflighting a spam can (PA-181) for a flight when I noticed a an adjacent pilot taking some kids up for their first flight. Awesome, I thought. However, in her quest to get into the air, she didn't untie one wing tiedown. On taxi, she got a bit of a surprise. I was able to get her to shut down; I untied her wing, and then sent her on her way.

Distractions form the "normal" preflight are worrisome. If I have to call the fuel truck, and it's late, I'll redo the full preflight just to be sure I didn't miss any thing!

Interested pilots and lookie-loos are great, but are not conducive to a good preflight. Give them the show, and restart at the top of the checklist.
Bill Bencze
N430WB RV-7 @KHAF, Flying 100+ hrs
VAF 2021 donation happily made
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Old 12-13-2015, 11:41 PM
md9680 md9680 is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Edgewood, NM
Posts: 139

Hmmm...Distractions. Maybe I shouldn't admit to:

1. Failing to remove the nose wheel chocks before trying to power away from the tie down.

2. Failing to remove the pitot tube cover. Someone from the FBO called over the radio while we were doing the runup. My instructor graciously got out to remove it saying, "A lot of people do that once."

I can almost guarantee these two things will never happen again.
Mike Davisson
Edgewood, NM
Cherokee 235
RV-14A #140805
VS complete
Rudder complete
HS complete
Elevators in progress

2021 =VAF= Donor
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:00 AM
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Don Patrick Don Patrick is offline
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: GTA, Ontario
Posts: 873

Originally Posted by wjb View Post
Distractions are evil. I was preflighting a spam can (PA-181) for a flight.
I always thought spam cans were Cessna's? Just learned something's any tric-cycle aluminum a/c.

Last edited by Don Patrick : 12-14-2015 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:03 AM
Vlad's Avatar
Vlad Vlad is offline
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Utah
Posts: 8,446
Default Distractions/interruptions are evil

I can almost guarantee they are not happening again. Missed on preflight during last 4 years luckily all were discovered before takeoff except pitot cover.

Pitot cover
Cowl plugs
Nose wheel chock
Rudder lock
Aileron lock
Canopy latch
Oil door

Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:14 PM
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RONSIM RONSIM is offline
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Largo, FL
Posts: 1,074
Default Vlad covered most of mine, except

unused seat belt INSIDE before closing door ----- makes one H of a mess on fuselage paint during runup!

RV-10 Co-built, maintained, flown (sold)
RV-8A Maintained and flown (Sold)
RV-6A (Sold) Bought and Flying (N177RV), upgrades $$$
IO360, 180HP/CS, AFS 5600T, D10A, G650, G430, G327, ADS-B, VIZ385 AP
Very Happy Contributor
Based at KCLW (Clearwater, FL)
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Old 12-14-2015, 01:39 PM
8 Builder 8 Builder is offline
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Lowell, MA
Posts: 88

OK... Since we are all going to confession...One cold morning last month I did my preflight on the PA28 I am taking lessons in. I got to the point where I had the right cowl open and was going to remove the extension cord plugged into the electric engine heater. My instructor wasn't there yet so I said to myself...."Self; be good to the engine and wait to unplug it untill just before you are ready to go." I went back inside to warm up. My instructor arrived and we went out to the plane. Well I'm sure you can finish the story from here. We got in and did the usual checklist for startup. Started real nice too because someone kept the engine nice and warm. Taxied to the runup area and did an uneventful runup check. Cleared for takeoff and off we went. This is when it got interesting. When we reached about 500ft AGL, the right cowl popped patially open and twisted down in the airstream and got caught under the rear of the nosebowl. NOWWWW I remembered leaving the cord plugged in and the cowl unbuttoned. Since this was a flying lesson, I got to practice a SHORT base leg approach on the return to the field. When we got out to view the damage we found only a small dent in the front of the cowl panel where it got caught. Much to my surprise the extention cord had gotten caught in the front wheel support tubing and hung there trailing in the wind for the whole ride. The person working the desk for the school came out and surveyed the damage. I don't know why he didn't laugh when I suggested that because of the trailing cord, I should get tow plane time in my log book.
You are all correct. THAT will never happen again. Good to hear I'm not alone.
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Old 12-14-2015, 02:09 PM
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DaleB DaleB is offline
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Omaha, NE (KMLE)
Posts: 2,331

Originally Posted by 8 Builder View Post
so I said to myself...."Self; be good to the engine and wait to unplug it untill just before you are ready to go."
I learned to never -- EVER -- think "Oh, I'll do that right before I get in".

Had my newly purchased plane tied down overnight on the trip back home. The next morning I did my preflight, but didn't pull the nose wheel chock. Oh, it's a little breezy. I'll remove that right before I get in so I don't have to worry about the plane rolling. Yeah.

Strapped in, canopy closed, reached for the key to start it... nope. It's in my pocket. Fumble around, squirm around, finally give up and unbuckle, dig it out of my pocket, get all buckled back in and start the engine. Engine looks good, let's taxi... umm, let's taxi... Oh, crud. Guess who forgot to pull that chock? I'm sure the FBO guys were having a good chuckle. Or maybe not, they probably see it a couple of times a week at least.

Shut it all down. Unbuckle. Canopy open. Climb out. Go pull the chock. Do it all again. Lesson learned... Thou shalt begin thy preflight inspection at the beginning, and thou shalt end thy preflight inspection at the end, and thou shalt not interrupt it; and if thou gets interrupted thou shalt begin anew from the beginning.

Omaha, NE
RV-12 # 222 N980KM "Screamin' Canary" (bought flying)
Fisher Celebrity (under construction)
Previous RV-7 project (sold)
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Old 12-14-2015, 02:59 PM
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keen9a keen9a is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 247

Originally Posted by 8 Builder View Post
be good to the engine and wait to unplug it until just before you are ready to go.
I did the same thing just the other day, though with a C-172. I took one step away when I realized it was a bad idea. However, my solution was to coil up enough of the extension cord tom top of the cowl that I couldn't miss it from the pilot seat.
Ben Keen
RV-9 Flying 8/21/2016
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