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  #1  
Old 06-09-2020, 11:24 AM
gasman gasman is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Sonoma County
Posts: 4,134
Default First Flight... the pilot. Where did you solo.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel View Post
I'm glad Texas doesn't have these kinds of restrictions. My 1500' X 20' runway would never pass muster.
This post from Mel made me think about my home base.

My training and solo was out of this strip https://papapetaluma.org/about-the-airport/ in 1979. "The Sky Ranch had a gravel runway 1800 feet long by 30 feet wide." By then it had been paved but only out to a width of 25 feet... and even at that the edges were eroded back to 20 feet by the time I started training there. There was a farm fence on one end and a road with power lines at the other. The runway was 1800' long and the turnoff was 3/4 down the runway. We were trained to make that turnoff, it led straight to the gas station type fuel pump.

You think all of this is normal.... until at around 10 hours we head out of our training area and go here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naval_...eld_Santa_Rosa This field is 7000' long by 150' wide. For me then, it was hard to land on. Go figure. The instructors at that airport would not let their students land in Petaluma.

My little strip was "normal" to us students and all that were based there. And that included a guy with a P-51. This guy always made the first turnoff. Remember the road at the end of the run way.... Driving in for a lesson one day, I looked down the runway just in time to see the P-51 lift off!! With the sun hitting the face of the prop, it looked (the disc) as wide as the runway.

Learn to fly from a small strip and you will never regret it.
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Last edited by gasman : 06-11-2020 at 01:39 AM.
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  #2  
Old 06-09-2020, 11:50 AM
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Mel Mel is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Dallas area
Posts: 11,218
Default

I learned to fly at White Rock Airport in east Dallas in 1967. As I remember it was 1900' long and about 15' wide (after years of erosion). Church at one end and school at the other.
Approach to Rwy 18 was across a road and blocked from view from the road so about once or twice a year landing aircraft bounced off the roof of a car.

Don Scott was starting a new flying school and needed students. Offered me a deal..... "Up through Solo for $100!" That was a great deal even then.

Soloed C-150 and soon after, bought a '41 T-Craft. Much more fun!
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Mel Asberry, DAR since the last century. Over 1,000 certifications accomplished. Discount for Veterans, Law Enforcement, Fire Fighters.
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<rvmel(at)icloud.com>

Last edited by Mel : 06-14-2020 at 05:41 PM.
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  #3  
Old 06-09-2020, 12:17 PM
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Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is offline
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 1,574
Default

I learned to fly at Bedford, MA, with massive runways. But... I soloed at Lawrence, MA, uncontrolled at the time. I also regularly flew out of Minuteman, before they lengthened the runway, and also flew out of another airport where the first third of the runway was narrower than the wingspan. We also went into Marlboro, MA, 1400 feet long, landing over the trees. Worked real hard at it (in the Cessna 172) and was stopped mid-field. Coming in the other way, you checked for no traffic on the highway and checked that you were level with the second floor windows in the house next to final.
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  #4  
Old 06-09-2020, 12:31 PM
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Tankerpilot75 Tankerpilot75 is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Posts: 683
Default

I learned to fly on a 10,500? x 150 runway. At least now I don?t flair high when landing on a towered runway!
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Superior XPIO-360, Hartzel CS prop, Dual GRT Horizon EX with ARINC, EIS, Garmin 340, 335 w/WAAS gps, Dual 430s (non-WAAS), TruTrak 385 A/P with auto-level & auto-trim, Tosten 6 button Military Grips, FlightBox wired to EX, Dynon D10A w/battery backup, 406 MHz ELT. Custom Interior, New TS Flightline hoses, Great POH!
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  #5  
Old 06-09-2020, 12:45 PM
kaweeka kaweeka is offline
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Roseville
Posts: 463
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I learned out of a small airport in Chico, Ca (Ranchaero Airport) that, at the time, was nestled in the middle of almond orchards. It was nicknamed the sidewalk (2156 x 30 ft.) and the wind would always turn as soon as you got below the tree tops.
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  #6  
Old 06-09-2020, 12:58 PM
SPX SPX is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 574
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I did my first solo in Palo Alto (PAO) in 1996.
2500' x 50' as I recall.
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  #7  
Old 06-09-2020, 01:01 PM
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RV8iator RV8iator is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Saint Simons Island , GA
Posts: 1,635
Default Tims Airpark

I soloed from Tims Airpark, north of Austin, Tx. in July of 1968. 2746 feet by 40 feet wide. We used the grass on the east side in Taylorcrafts and Champs. Lots of extra runway there...
What great memories..
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  #8  
Old 06-09-2020, 01:35 PM
flyinga flyinga is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Fredericksburg, TX
Posts: 667
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Hey Mel, got my PPL in 1968 and flew int White Rock several times. I'd usually rent C-150 out of Dallas-Garland. Both long gone now.....
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  #9  
Old 06-09-2020, 02:05 PM
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jcarne jcarne is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Worland, Wyoming
Posts: 1,983
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Mine was at Lakeland Linder in 2003. Fun fact, I used to hate Sun 'n Fun because they would take our planes off field for the week and I couldn't fly. Haha that was before I knew how awesome the experimental world is!
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  #10  
Old 06-09-2020, 02:14 PM
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Foghorn Foghorn is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Virginia Beach
Posts: 220
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Eastland, TX (KETN), June 1982, I was 17 years old. CFI was Joe Beatty (RIP).
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