Tried Something New!

English: Remos G-3, photographed at Sun 'n Fun...
English: Remos G-3, photographed at Sun ‘n Fun 2004 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had the opportunity to fly with Total Flight Solutions in Louisburg yesterday and fly in a Remos GX light sport aircraft (like this one, well, sort of, this is a G-3 and I flew a GX, but pretty much the same) .   The plane only weighs 700 pounds empty and can’t weigh more than 1,320 pounds at gross weight.  This was the first time that I have had the opportunity to fly a light-sport and compared to a Cessna 152, it is a sports car!  It accelerates faster, climbs much faster and is much more responsive in flight.  This makes me even more excited about getting these type of aircraft into the hands of missionaries.

I am scheduled to fly my 2nd solo on Friday and then immediately fly a little cross-country to Fayetteville with Richard.  Right now, the weather looks acceptable.  Here’s to hoping it holds out.

About to Solo!

Got to spend 2.5 hours today in the air with Richard.  This makes a total of 6.6 hours so far on the Hobbs Meter.  If you ever rent an airplane, this little clock measures the amount of time the engine is running and that equals your rental time.  If you train out of a larger airport like Raleigh-Durham (RDU), you get to pay to wait in line to take-off behind Southwest and Delta.  Luckily, there is no waiting at Sanford Executive Jetport (KTTA).

During our flight, we worked on stalls, S-turns, all kinds of landings and take-offs (short-field, soft-field, engine-out, normal), and spiral descents to simulate engine-out landings.  The spiral descent was a new experience as we climbed to 3,000 feet, cut power and circled our “landing point” in a 45-55 degree bank (reach 60 degrees and you are required to wear a parachute) at 60 knots of airspeed.  You lose about 500 feet of altitude for every 360 degree circle around the point.  That is quite the elevator ride!

People are asking me what type of aircraft am I talking about in regards to mission aviation.  Here is a link to Zenith Aircraft and the Zenith CH750  (http://www.zenithair.com/stolch750/).  This is what I am talking about.  This airplane is able to carry two people and take-off and land in a football field!  Talk about opening up the ability for missionaries to reach remote locations!

Zenith CH750 - perfect for helping pilots get the Word out
Zenith CH750 – perfect for helping pilots get the Word out

Flying!

I went up with my instructor, Richard Taylor, on Memorial Day and again on Thursday.  I logged 1.9 hours of flight time.  Since I trained for 38 hours in 2007, we reviewed what I learned back then and worked on some new stuff.  Richard says that I am not that rusty for laying off 6 years.  We worked on coordinated turns, steep turns, stalls, and landings.  Cessna 152’s seem to drop faster in a stall than the Diamond DA-20 I trained in back in Little Rock.  Maybe I just forgot what it feels like.  Makes for quite the roller coaster the first time!

Here is a picture of my hot rod.

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Richard has been flying for more than 50 years and has flown everything from crop dusters to corporate jets.  He was also an instructor in the Navy.  He said that I would learn to land again on a nice BIG 6,000 ft. runway but that the airport was shutting down the runway to repave the runway and I would takeoff and land on the taxiway.  That will really teach me to land, he said.  We are also going to go to a 2,500 ft. grass strip surrounded by trees later on to, as he says, make flying fun!  I think I’m going to enjoy training with Richard.

Joined Wings of Carolina Flying Club!

On May 20, 2013, I joined the Wings of Carolina Flying Club (www.wingsofcarolina.org).  That night I started ground school, which lasts for 15 sessions, 3 hours each!  Luckily, I enjoy aviation, but no break in studying this summer!  John Hunter is our instructor and he has been flying and teaching aviation for 50 years.  He is also the chief mechanic for the flying club and uses volunteers to help maintain the aircraft each Wednesday night.  Wings of Carolina has been around for many years and is one of the largest flying clubs in the United States.  I am very blessed to have a club like this nearby to keep training costs lower and instructional value very high.  Well, back to the books to study aerodynamics (or as Marissa called it, “automaniacs”).

Welcome!

Greetings from Wake Forest, North Carolina!  Liani, the kids and I hope you are all well.

Don’t you find it interesting to look back over your life and see how the hand of God has been at work during different points of your journey?  We wonder why things happen the way they do, and then one day in the future it all comes together and makes more sense.  When Liani, the kids and I moved to North Carolina, all we knew was that God had made it clear that we were to obediently follow the call to ministry education.  Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary is known as a “Great Commission” seminary and focuses on finding ways to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Through these connections and a lifelong passion of mine (albeit one I thought I would NEVER achieve), I would like to present an opportunity into which Liani and I are embarking.

Many of you have seen missionary aviation aircraft on the internet or television before.  Organizations such as MAF and JAARS fly Cessna 206 and larger aircraft into remote areas for missionary and humanitarian transportation.  However, they want pilots already trained to fly.  In addition, a new industry is sprouting up all over the globe and especially in the United States known as light sport aircraft.  These planes are two seat aircraft and fly for a substantially discounted price.  No, these are NOT ultralights, but are real airplanes!  Many manufacturers have seen the need for affordable “bush” aircraft and are purposely designing these aircraft to fly into very rough landing/takeoff conditions.  We want to help further this niche and train missionary pilots.  We are also going to assist in raising funds and interest in missionary aviation to financially assist in transporting pastors and missionaries to heretofore unreachable areas to spread the saving news of Jesus Christ.  I have discussed this with international missionaries and they are excited about the possibilities.

However, I have to finance my own training.  The cost to obtain all of the certifications to teach flying and airmanship and other missionary skills is approximately $50,000.  While this sounds astronomical and impossible, we are reminded that all things are possible with God.  Therefore, we are asking each of you to pray about supporting this ministry.  I am reminded that Scripture instructs us to either GO or SEND in regards to mission work.  I believe it is our responsibility to SEND missionaries by training them and helping them finance their aircraft.  We also don’t have to GO very far when students come here to the United States to train.  We hope you agree to join us with the responsibility to GO or SEND missionaries by helping fund this ministry.

If you would like to discuss this ministry further, or would like for us to come speak to your church, please contact us at greatcommissionaviation@gmail.com.