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Thread: serious question

  1. #1

    Unhappy serious question

    Well this may not be the best place but i have a very serious question
    I am about to lose my father and when that happens i am supposed to
    spread his remains on a mountain and i seem to remember along time
    ago an old timer told me when you do that you can't just open the door
    or window and dump the ashes so my question is how do you have to do it
    do any of you know?? and i am asking so when i go to do this if the pilot
    doesn't know i will or can find someone that does
    thanks you for your replies
    Larry

  2. #2

    Default my advise

    I am sorry to hear about your father. May he go in peace.

    I have never done it but I had a friend spread some ashes from a Cessna 172. He said that you need to have the ashes in a sealed container and then put the container out the rear half of the window and not open the container until an arms length away from the cabin. The reason for this is if you open the container inside the aircraft and then try and put it outside the window all the ashes will end up in the back of the aircraft.

    The container doesnt have to be fancy. I think he used a heavy duty ziplock bag.

  3. #3

    Default

    There is a thread about this on supercub.org if you search there they had a whole bunch of different ideas.
    sorry about your father.

  4. #4
    Member BeaverDriver's Avatar
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    Default

    Sorry to hear about your dad.

    The answer to your question is that it depends on the aircraft and the location, on the aircraft, if the windows or doors you are going to use. The best method I have found is using a larger diameter plastic tube as a sort of siphon. We used to place the tube out of the small vent window in the Piper Cherokee then allow the person in the passenger seat to do the honors by holding the bag with the remains and using the tube as a sort of vacuum. Just make sure the tube is long enough and stiff enough to get it past the low pressure area that naturally occurs around the aircraft. I also found that climbing up a bit and bringing the power to idle helped to keep the tube from flattening against the side of the aircraft. The pilot can also help keep the ashes away from the plane by holding the rudder a bit and creating a slip although too much of this makes for a big low pressure area and burbles around the aircraft.

    There are other logical vents on other aircraft that could be used - the "spin-around" vents in the back windows of a 180/185 might work - you would just have to find a tube small enough to fit out the windows.

    It isn't as easy as it looks and there will be a certain amount of ashes that cling to the aircraft.

    Sorry again about your Dad.

  5. #5
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    Default Grizzly 1

    Quote Originally Posted by thehappyalaskan View Post
    Well this may not be the best place but i have a very serious question
    I am about to lose my father and when that happens i am supposed to
    spread his remains on a mountain and i seem to remember along time
    ago an old timer told me when you do that you can't just open the door
    or window and dump the ashes so my question is how do you have to do it
    do any of you know?? and i am asking so when i go to do this if the pilot
    doesn't know i will or can find someone that does
    thanks you for your replies
    Larry
    I'm sorry about your father, Larry. I have spread the ashes of my own father and my former wife in the mountains. I spread the first with a Super Cub, and the second with a C-206 floatplane. I used the same technique with both airplanes, and it seemed to work well. I simply used the container that was provided with the cremated remains, but made sure that the top remained in place until the container was outside the plane, and held far from the fuselage.

    If you use the "tube" technique mentioned in other responses, be sure to use a tube with an inside diameter large enough to handle such items as bone fragments and/or dental bridges and the like. Sorry to be so grim about this, but you did ask, and these elements are included with the cremated remains.

    Again, I'm sorry to hear about your father. I know he would have appreciated both your actions and the place you finally select for the honor.

    Respectfully,

    Mort Mason

  6. #6
    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Default

    Sorry to hear about your father. I don't know the correct way but I will share the incorrect way with you so you can avoid it. Not long after I got my private pilots license a friend ask me to help him spread his wifes remains over the ocean in Hawaii. I rented a Cessna 150 and he had the remains in a plastic bag. I slowed the plane down to near stall speed and he opened the door, when he went to dump the bag the wind sucked most of the ashes back into the cockpit. For a moment I could not see anything and thought that we in serious trouble. I was able to open my door as well and clear the cockpit. During this the wind pulled the bag from his hand and it got caught on the wing strut. We had to fly back to the airfield with the bag still flapping on the strut. The inside was covered in ash. I had the very unpleasant task of cleaning the plane as he was too upset to even think of it. What started out as a good deed almost ended in disaster.
    To be honest it never occurred to me that it would blow back on us that way, we were very lucky.

    Again, sorry to hear of your pending loss, please be careful and Gods speed to you and your family.

    Steve
    "I refuse to let the things I can't do stop me from doing the things I can"
    Founding Member
    http://www.residenthuntersofalaska.org/

  7. #7
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default

    I have done this on a few occasions for friends. I have always used large diameter piece of PVC tubing or large cardboard tube. Like 3 or 4 inches in diameter.
    The outside end gets semi sealed with paper with a tear string attached. The back end has a pull off cap.
    Just stick the tube out the cub window facing aft, pull the tearing string and then release the rear cap, everything gets sucked straight out.

    Twice, we also played around with some fireworks, using 2 inch motar rounds from Gorilla fireworks in a big cardboard tube and a flare parachute. I thought it was a rather nice touch, and we managed not to set the plane on fire lighting the fuze, but I am sure some pencil neck will point out the regulations against it...plus you pretty much have to be over water....

    I have an idea for the next time using a C02 fire extingusher and a PVC tube mounted to the wing strut of the cub. While not as American as pyrotechnics, it should be somewhat less flammable. I just need an extended HP hose and adapter ends..
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
    Experimental Hand-Loader, NRA Life Member
    http://site.dragonflyaero.com

  8. #8
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    Default

    Fireworks mortar out of a flying plane! That is really choice. Seems like a mortar from the ground with ashes incorporated would be pretty cool on its own. Maybe touch it off from a coastal peak.

  9. #9
    Member PatrickH's Avatar
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    Default bag it

    When we spread my father-in-laws ashes over the ocean the pilot had us put the ashes in a light paper bag with the top sealed before taking off. It was like a tissue-paper bag. He warned us that trying to sprinkle them would end up with a lot of the cremains blowing back into the airplane. Even if the bag held together until it hit the water, it would blow apart on impact. It worked great. He (father-in-law) ended up landing in the middle of a pod of whales.
    Whatever you do, be sure the ashes are well away from the airplane before they are released. Going out with a bang in fireworks is a nice touch. For myself, I would like to MacGyver something on a wing strut with a remote release. Maybe a mortar on the strut with a really long fuse. I would hate to have to explain that one to the FAA. Of course if I am the one in the mortar, I would not have to worry about that...
    Good luck

  10. #10

    Default

    Have no exp. but would think that a brown lunch bag would pretty much open upon impact with the ground. And be biodegradeable to boot. Could you rig the bag to the strut with some sort of release system from inside the aircraft? A pvc tube wire tied to the strut that had a coathanger pin that could be pulled from inside, allowing the paper bag to drop? Sounds easy and a way to keep the remains where you want them. On the mountain.

    Hope this helps, and my condolences. Bob.

  11. #11

    Default thanks

    thanks for all the replies guys

  12. #12

    Default

    I actually have to do this for my job with a fair amount of regularity. I did many tests and have come up with the best method so far. Materials: one plastic trash bag large enough to hold the ashes, and a length of cord about 6 feet long. Turn the bag inside out, at the bottom of the bag tie one end of the cord around a small piece of the bag, it has to be secure as you will see. On the other end of the cord tie a loop for a handle. Turn the bag right side out. The cord will be coming up the center of the bag. Pour the ashes into the bag and tie the neck closed with something easy to remove in the plane. For a 206 I use 90 knots clean, open the window, the family member who will do the release puts the loop around one hand, untie the string holding the neck closed but hold it closed with the non-looped hand. Hold the bag outside the window and release the bag. the bag will blown back to the end of the cord which makes the bag open, since the the cord tied to the bottom it makes the bag turn inside out ensuring all the ashes are distributed and because of the length of the cord there is no blowback. After a couple of seconds reel the bag back in. If you need pictures send me a private message.

  13. #13
    Member BeaverDriver's Avatar
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    Default

    Sounds like a pretty good idea.

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