Home > VansAirForceForums

-Advertise in here!
- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Keep VAF Going
Donate methods

Point your
camera app here
to donate fast.

Go Back   VAF Forums > Main > RV General Discussion/News
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
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.

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 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 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.
VAF #897 Warren Moretti
2020 =VAF= Dues PAID

Last edited by gasman : 06-11-2020 at 01:39 AM.
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 11:50 AM
Mel's Avatar
Mel Mel is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Dallas area
Posts: 11,218

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!
Mel Asberry, DAR since the last century. Over 1,000 certifications accomplished. Discount for Veterans, Law Enforcement, Fire Fighters.
EAA Flight Advisor/Tech Counselor, Friend of the RV-1
Recipient of Tony Bingelis Award and Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award
USAF Vet, High School E-LSA Project Mentor.
RV-6 Flying since 1993 (sold)

Last edited by Mel : 06-14-2020 at 05:41 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 12:17 PM
Ed_Wischmeyer's Avatar
Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 1,574

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.
RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual G3X Touch with autopilot, GTN650, GTX330ES, GDL52 ADSB-In)
Previously RV-4, RV-8, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
ATP CFII PhD, so I have no excuses when I screw up
Vaccines kept me out of the hospital but COVID still cost me a month of living, all told...
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 12:31 PM
Tankerpilot75's Avatar
Tankerpilot75 Tankerpilot75 is offline
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Posts: 683

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!
Jim Harris, ATP, T38, EC/KC-135A/E/R, 2008 RV7A, 2nd owner, N523RM (2015)
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!
Retired - Living the dream - going broke!
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 12:45 PM
kaweeka kaweeka is offline
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Roseville
Posts: 463

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.
RV-9A N435KR, Vans calendar March 2018
LIO 320 B1A, Dual LS Plasma III, AFP injection
G3x touch
Roseville, Ca
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 12:58 PM
SPX SPX is offline
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: San Diego
Posts: 574

I did my first solo in Palo Alto (PAO) in 1996.
2500' x 50' as I recall.
Paid, Jan 2021
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 01:01 PM
RV8iator's Avatar
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..
Jerry "Widget" Morris
RV 8, N8JL, 3,100+ hours on my 8.

VAF #818
Saint Simons Island, GA. KSSI
PIF 2007 - 2022

I just wish I could afford to live the way I do
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 01:35 PM
flyinga flyinga is offline
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Fredericksburg, TX
Posts: 667

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.....
Jim Averett
TS36 - Silver Wings
Fredericksburg, TX
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 02:05 PM
jcarne's Avatar
jcarne jcarne is offline
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Worland, Wyoming
Posts: 1,983

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!
Jereme Carne
RV-7A Flying as of 03/2021
Exempt but gladly paying!
Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2020, 02:14 PM
Foghorn's Avatar
Foghorn Foghorn is offline
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Virginia Beach
Posts: 220

Eastland, TX (KETN), June 1982, I was 17 years old. CFI was Joe Beatty (RIP).
Jeff Parker
RV8 Fastback (Tomís Dream) - Building (N767TS)
C195 (Red Dawg) - Flying (N4469C)
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:06 AM.

The VAFForums come to you courtesy Delta Romeo, LLC. By viewing and participating in them you agree to build your plane using standardized methods and practices and to fly it safely and in accordance with the laws governing the country you are located in.