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Thread: How should I feel about this?

  1. #1
    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Default How should I feel about this?

    I know, I know, the word feel probably already has your dander up...but I keep watching this guy routinely making mile long aborted or sketchy take off runs at full throttle in his U206 on floats out of Petersburg. When he does get off the water he is unable to climb out for some time and really has to watch his turn out. More often than not he is crawling back to the dock to unload and try again (like this morning). Don't get me wrong, some take offs are normal, but a disturbingly high percentage (to me) are aborted let alone sketchy.

    I'll tell you, I feel like it's not good practice and eventually he's going to run into problems and might take somebody with him. I wish I knew him to ask him about it. I wish the community of pilots here would talk to him and ask him about it. I'm not a pilot so I don't know, but that's how I feel. Maybe there's nothing wrong with it. I don't know, I just want to do the right thing whatever that is. I'd rather just sit back and watch.

    So educate me. How should I feel about this routine overloading (my guess), as it has been occurring more than a few times this summer? I don't see it with anyone else around here, just this one plane, over and over again.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    If a non-pilot or even a pilot I wasn't very familiar with approached me to give me unsolicited advice I'd tell him to F-off.

    You asked.

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    Member dkwarthog's Avatar
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    I'll bet the mother/wife/kids of the person that guy kills will disagree with you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkwarthog View Post
    I'll bet the mother/wife/kids of the person that guy kills will disagree with you.
    I agree, your concern over his flight planning may save a life. You could share with him the accident report of the 206 that left PAMR overloaded, landed in a parking lot, burst in to flames, and burned the pilot's young son. I bet that man has regrets about trying to load a few extra pounds into the flight.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Depends on what you are seeing..... it might not be what you think you are seeing...:

    1. Is this a commercial operator hauling paying passengers ??
    2. Maybe somebody doing training. ??
    3. Just a local guy trying to haul too many boxes of supplies out to his cabin.??
    4. A pilot learning a new plane or experimenting with a modification ??

    Saw the same thing here with a ***** driver hauling too many passengers. I used videos of the aborted and marginal T-Os for training SES clients. Eventually the plane was piled-up into the trees without killing anyone. Plane has been rebuilt and now the pilot tends to fly a bit lighter.


    BTW: I used to live in a house on pilings about 7.5 miles out the road in Petersburg right on the water. The high tide came up under the living room.
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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    I'll add a gratuitous non-related Otter shot so nobody feels like I wasted their time reading this...

    I don't much care if the guy thinks less of me or bad mouths me, I do care about having a clean conscience.

    I don't know who or what he is hauling nor for whom. The registration goes back to a Fairbanks couple.

    I might suspect training or testing mods if he didn't always turn around and come back 10 minutes later and then take off and leave the area for a good while.

    It's obviously less risk over continuous water than in a climb out situation, but nevertheless it leaves me concerned.

    Float Pilot, I bet you had a great view of Mt. Point/Tonka!
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I was on the beach about mile 7.5 Mitkoff Hwy on the narrows. A few miles further out than the Beachcomber. I looked on google earth and my old house is no longer there. It was two old logging-camp float houses which had been nailed together and made into a dock house. it was just a little further out past a natural spring which came out of the rocks by the highway.
    Back in the mid 80s there was a big float-plane operation located on an extensive dock along the narrows.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  8. #8

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    You have valid concerns, but I'm with FP, there may be more to it. I'm not "that guy", but I have had to do the taxi of shame back to the dock. Once I under estimated the power of glassy water grip. I know, we learn this in ground school, but 200 hrs later I didn't think of it. Tried a takeoff with the same load I had taken countless times before. And it just would not accelerate, had to taxi back with everyone asking "what happened there?". I remember hearing the tide will get you too. I imagine trying to takeoff upriver. As a fairly new guy to this, I know the learning curve is steep, cause I'm still climbing. I guess I just give the benefit of the doubt when I dont know the story, and I can relate. I blame that trait on my other half. She's made me a bit soft.

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    [QUOTE=Mr. Pid;1415048]If a non-pilot or even a pilot I wasn't very familiar with approached me to give me unsolicited advice I'd tell him to F-off.

    You asked.[/QUOTE

    Your answer sort of surprises me, Mr. Pid. I think RainGull was asking for, not intending to offer, advice. Some of us, and even a few of us with quite a few hours of PIC, readily accept both inquiries and "advice". We don't have to take the advice, of course.

    It would appear that, if the guy is flying Part 135, he might be a bit beyond the regs with his loads. That's a violation, of course. If not, and if he's overloaded (a lot of us did that), then shame on him, since it's still on the far side of dangerous. It may even be that the pilot doesn't even know what his load is, nor how it's been loaded. Seems that simply asking the pilot shouldn't get his hackles up . . . . .

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I might suspect training or testing mods if he didn't always turn around and come back 10 minutes later and then take off and leave the area for a good while.
    Actually that sounds a lot like training......
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
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  11. #11

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    I think there is more to the story. If he gets the plane airborne why would he come back to land? I would just go to my destination and land there to unload. (Could be going to a high lake, that would change my mind). I am not a float pilot, but even on wheels some guys just take a long time to get into the air. He could just be a new pilot with poor skills. He may not be trying to climb out after take off some like to stay in ground effect for a while. But than he could just be one of the types that overload every time. If he is the type to overload every trip, I don't think anything you would say to him would help. Ask some of the local pilots what the story is, I bet someone has already said something if it is a overloading.
    DENNY

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RainGull View Post
    I'll add a gratuitous non-related Otter shot so nobody feels like I wasted their time reading this...

    I don't much care if the guy thinks less of me or bad mouths me, I do care about having a clean conscience.

    I don't know who or what he is hauling nor for whom. The registration goes back to a Fairbanks couple.

    I might suspect training or testing mods if he didn't always turn around and come back 10 minutes later and then take off and leave the area for a good while.

    It's obviously less risk over continuous water than in a climb out situation, but nevertheless it leaves me concerned.

    Float Pilot, I bet you had a great view of Mt. Point/Tonka!

    Nice pic of Dave Doyon's Otter in Ketchikan, thanks.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by boneguy View Post
    I think there is more to the story. If he gets the plane airborne why would he come back to land? I would just go to my destination and land there to unload. (Could be going to a high lake, that would change my mind).
    Just speculation, but if it was a situation where he felt there was a problem or a higher risk of problems when landing due to being overloaded, he may be choosing to land at a location that has better facilities for rescue should something go wrong. If he just barely got off and continued to some remote location and crashed at landing there, the chances of survival/rescue would be far lower than if he did it near town.

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    If the pilot in question is indeed making poor choices he is unlikely to accept constructive criticism from another pilot, much less a non pilot. On the other hand, if he piles it up your conscience is going to be screwed for quite some time.

    If you feel that strongly about it, you'd be best served by striking up a conversation that is educational to the both of you. Mr Pid.s answer does not strike me as odd in the least bit. Although many might not use those exact words, the sentiment will usually be the same. Introducing yourself, and asking a few genuine questions (when he's not got both hands full trying to get a revenue load out before the Wx closes) would far better serve the both of you.

    There are a couple things about your posts that you must come to grips with;

    Quote Originally Posted by RainGull View Post
    I'm not a pilot so I don't know, but that's how I feel. Maybe there's nothing wrong with it. I don't know,
    The vast majority of private pilots couldn't watch a take off run and tell you weather it was performed at almost gross, or almost light with a budding pilot. Let alone if it was performed legally or not. You don't even have the simple training of a private pilot

    Quote Originally Posted by RainGull View Post
    but I keep watching this guy routinely making mile long aborted or sketchy take off runs at full throttle in his U206 on floats out of Petersburg.
    There may be nothing wrong with burning a mile on a take off run, every one is something different, I would rather see someone burn up ground, or water, than stagger into the air. Incidentally, every take off should be made at full throttle, so I'm not sure what you are trying to emphasize there, but more importantly, what you are hearing as he roars down the water is his prop position, not his throttle. Once that thing is off the stops and set to fine pitch, it is going to be at take off RPM, regardless of throttle setting, which may in fact be some what retarded due to some mechanical anomaly ... My only point here is to illustrate that lacking both a trained eye in piloting skills, and lacking in aircraft mechanical knowledge you may really be going out on a limb to arrive at the conclusion that something is wrong...

    'Sketchy' is very subjective... even minor gusty conditions may require an exorbitant amount of control deflection to keep the airplane tracking where you want, frequently to an untrained eye, all of this movement which is actually skillful piloting may appear 'Sketchy"

    Quote Originally Posted by RainGull View Post
    I might suspect training or testing mods if he didn't always turn around and come back 10 minutes later and then take off and leave the area for a good while.
    From your initial post I would have not suspected training or testing, however, after reading this line which leads you away from those ideas, I would come to the conclusion that training or testing may very well be what he is doing. 10 Minutes of flying an airplane that is wallowing to stay in the air is an enormous amount of time. If you take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with accidents that have occurred out of gross negligence in loading, you will discover that the vast majority of these occur in the immediate vicinity of the departure point, not 20 miles away which is where that 206 is going to be in 10 minutes. After 10 minutes of flight at a take off power setting (because no one is going to pull power off a plane that is staggering to stay flying) a 206 will already be almost 30 pounds lighter just from fuel burn! Again, what you think you're seeing and what is really happening may not really be adding up...

    At the end of the day, it may very well be something as simple as the pilot using a retarded takeoff setting and loping around the local area to get a look see at something at supercub speeds... Again to an untrained eye, or unwitting person this aircraft may appear to be struggling while there is actually plenty of power left in reserve. The fact that he left his prop spooled up may simply be a sign that he want's to be able to stab the throttle at any moment to access that reserve power without having two knobs to manipulate. The fact sometimes that he leaves for 10 minutes and returns to unload may in fact be a completed round-robin flight!

    So I guess what I'm getting at is there are so many other things that could be going on here,that it is probably a stretch to immediately prosecute this pilot for overloading, poor pilotage, poor maintenance or anything for that matter.

    Perhaps it is just an opportunity for you to learn a thing or two about airplanes, and for the pilot in question to learn a thing or two about how his piloting is appearing to the bystanders

    Approached with care, it sounds like a win-win to me...


    Take care, Rob

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    If that C-206 were turbocharged, and if he then used full throttle for the day's first takeoff, he'd be making a serious mistake! That first flight of the day should NOT be made with full throttle . . .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzly 2 View Post
    If that C-206 were turbocharged, and if he then used full throttle for the day's first takeoff, he'd be making a serious mistake! That first flight of the day should NOT be made with full throttle . . .
    Hi Grizzly 2,

    Operational procedures duly noted

    Unfortunately, I posted under the assumption that since RainGull had appeared to have gone as far as to performed an FAA search to identify the pilot / operator, the information regarding this aircraft (a Cessna U206) was correct. Had RainGull said it was in fact a (TSIO-520 powered) Cessna TU206 or Cessna TP206, or even a later (TIO-540 powered) T206, I may have addressed that question differently. On the other hand it may in fact be a U206, that has simply been converted?
    Of course then by virtue of the distinctly muffled exhaust note of the turbo models, I would have been really impressed by this non pilots ability to definitively point out throttle position from the shore Heck, I have known times when I couldn't be certain if the throttle was actually hitting the stops from inside the cockpit!

    This all really just goes to further illustrate that comments about throttle position from a bystander on the shoreline are folly at best....

    In the end I really have no 'dog in this fight' so to speak... I just hate to see a fellow aviator persecuted without due cause, (and perhaps it exists)... Heck I hail from so far away I am almost not even in the same country

    What I can add to this though, is that I recently returned from a 2 month road stint where the daily activity at the airfield included about a dozen ag aircraft coming and going all day. The vast majority of these aircraft were old enough to be governed by CAR 8 and operating under CAM 8.

    In a nutshell this meant that the vast majority of these flights were not only conducted at well above certified gross weights, but they were conducted at weights that would be deemed illegal, unsafe, and likely immoral if attempted in a Part 135 A/C. HOWEVER ....

    Without fail, by virtue of the pilots in question familiarity with the aircraft loads and configuration, profeciency etc etc, these take offs routinely appeared visually flawless, smooth, and safe...

    Appearances can be deceiving ...

    I will save you the boredom of the specifics of CAR8 / CAM8 operations and just get to the point with regards to weight and balance. What occurs here is a restricted cat part 137 aircraft is allowed to operate above its 'Certified gross weight' provided it meats the construction age requirements and has been flight tested at the intended operating weight and recorded. that will read as such;

    On this date ___________ , I (pilot)_____________________ holding a _____________ rating with certificate number _____________ as pilot of aircraft, make ____________ , model ____________ N_______ . Performed multiple take offs, spray runs procedure turns and other maneuvers related to aerial application with a hopper capacity of __________ pounds and a altitude of _________ and OAT of _____ degrees and it was determined that the aircraft performed safely and adequately as per CAM8.10-3(e)


    Consequently as you can imagine, what in effect now becomes the 'reality gross weight' is what the airplane will get off the ground from a given airstrip...

    Take care, Rob

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    To azsupercub:

    Didn't know about the CARB / CAMB operations, and am glad that you provided that info. The FARs allow a 15% overload to certain, closely defined, Alaska bush operations, an increase that most Alaska outback pilots think is humorous. A Super Cub used to have, and may still have, a placard limiting the baggage load to 50-lbs. It used to be that most Alaska guides put a butchered moose back there, at least a 550-lb "overload", and then secure the horns to the starboard jury struts. Certainly not legal, but is probably still be done almost every day during moose hunting season. My last turbocharged, amphibious C-206 was over gross with full fuel and two passengers, according to W&B calcs. We frequently flew with all six seats filled during floatplane operations. Heavy? You bet! I'm sure that the insurance coverage was not in place with those loads, but we did it nonetheless. I know I'll catch hell for admitting this . . . . .

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    Hi Grizzly 2

    I will try not to muck up the original posters thread too much more with view points from an outsider, but just wanted to say that I have been fascinated by your great state and it's rich entanglement with general aviation for most of my life. In fact since the early eighties when I left the service, I have done my best to at minimum make a yearly visit and see something new. I have enjoyed reading the stories of all the guys that flew in 'the good ole days' including yours . May those aviation tangles run for many years to come!

    take care, Rob

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    Member RainGull's Avatar
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    Sorry, a few misconceptions to correct. By "come back ten minutes later" I don't mean getting airborne and flying for ten minutes, I mean hitting it hard for a mile take off run, aborting, stopping at the mouth of the channel where boats and birds congregate and then idling back to the dock and then ten minutes later trying again. Also it is clear to me that he is unable to climb out not simply choosing not to in these instances.

    azsupercub, I get what you are saying, but respectfully I think that my judgment of "sketchy" is sound on this matter. Of course if he had the prop pitch such that he was not putting his max rpms to good use that could very well be the problem as could overloading or other performance issues that cannot be heard. That is something I cannot do anything but speculate about. FWIW his plane is by far the loudest and most vexatious to the ears around, very sharp and thwacky (to add some levity to the discussion).

    At any rate I will take all of your advice into consideration and do appreciate all of it.
    Science has a rich history of proving itself wrong.

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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    The mystery would drive me nuts.... I would buy a bunch of beef jerky and a couple of sodas. Then wander over to his dock when he is alone and after handing him a jerky stock mention that you are interested in aviation and wonder why his plane sounds so much loader than anyone else's in the area?
    Then mention,,,, " Boy you must really haul something heavy because you sure go further than anyone else to get out of the water... " He might tell you why, or he might snap and we will read about in later...
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