He might be too enthusiastic, he might be weak, and he might be overactive. But he's trying to be part of this world of flying. He never die out his passion. Learnt himself that he's going for his dream, and Flying is every pilot's soul. He wants to be a pilot no matter what, because he likes to fly. Outgoing as well to meet all friends throughout the whole world. And that he is me :)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Backsiting before flying to the skies~

Flying to the skies? Wow, I'm officially entering Flying Phase. And to my surprise, my callsign was assigned as MAHA 402. So, what's the meaning of callsign actually? For example, Malaysia Airlines flights like MH 2640 from Kota Kinabalu to Kuala Lumpur, they are called as Malaysian 2640. So same to us, we have our own callsign eventually, and mine will be MAHA 402. Flying first day with the FAM, which is Familiarization on the local training area of Langkawi.
Familiarization is basically about knowing where's your training area, where you will learn all your flying techniques and etc. To tell it briefly, it's a joyride for flying phase actually. There are number of aircraft parked outside there, Diamond DA-40 is the most usual plane for us. Diamond DA-42 is a Twin Engine aircraft where you will see two engine on that aircraft.

But before start myself on my FAM flight, let me introduce my flight on the backsitting flight today. Today my flight will be MAHA 13 flight from Langkawi to Langkawi. So what's all about this flight? Langkawi to Langkawi? Basically, where you start, you will end yourself where. You won't get yourself to other places like airlines, dropping passengers to where passengers they boarded. Air exercise for this flight will be PT Profile, which means the whole PT exercises before you go for flying exam. Getting myself flying on 9M-HMP, with cadet Kyle on Pilot In Command (PIC) today, assisted by Captain Shaun.

Backsiting of a Diamond DA-40 is really enjoyable flight actually. It works as if you are the passenger flying on that plane. So how the sound of engine looks like? It's basically like ATR power up sound and reduce RPM sound. But of course RPM for DA-40 is quite low when IDLE, around 890 RPM, which means 14 cycles per second. But my aim to backsit today wasn't only go for joyride, but to feel the cockpit atmosphere, working environment, preflight checks and etc.
Another great opportunity when you comes to flying, the aircraft livery you find at LGK is totally out of no where. You won't need to track the aircraft, but they will send the special livery periodically from time to time. For example, Airasia sent the QPR plane livery when I backsit Cadet Kyle's flight today.
So Before Engine Startup Check, Engine startup checklist and before takeoff check has to be done every single flight. Why? Perhaps the flight might be problematic? Who knows engine might fail? Someone had made adjustment on it. As Murphy Law states that:
"If Anything Can Go Wrong, It Will."
So do not attempt to skip any checks! There are number of incidents and accidents throughout the whole world whom didn't do well any follow the checklist one by one. Checklist are made for pilots to ease their jobs by looking on what you should check for every phase of flight.

Of course, before you fly, you need to walk around, check any loose items, cracks, fuel, tyres, engine, control movement and etc. Do not attempt to feel lazy and check around as it's concerned not only your life but to other people as well. The other people doesn't refer to the one on your flight, but to those people on ground, houses, cars and families especially. You might throw your life easily because of a simple checklist that you didn't perform well, but who's the one grief aftermaths? Your parents, other people whom may concern.
Back to flying, in Langkawi, is a small island, you have one runway but two directions, Runway 03 and Runway 21. If you guys remember on the runway marking, there are lines and numbers. For example, Runway 03 represents heading around 034. This is a reference for pilots to check which direction they should fly.
This is a picture of Runway 03 from middle of runway. Diamond DA-40 doesn't really require a long runway like airliners. Total maximum weight for takeoff is only 1,150kg only, almost to a weight of a car. Speed required to fly this aircraft is 65 kts for people backsit like me. Sound for takeoff is like ATR full thrust takeoff. Of course, takeoff is not easy, I will cover more on this particular takeoff when I start my flying.
And this is me, backsit with Cadet Kyle and Captain Shaun. If you guys noticed my attire, you have to wear lifejacket and headset. That's the main requirement for a trainee pilot. However, don't expect the lifejacket will be the same as the ones in airliners used. But basically mechanism is almost identical. When you pull the latch on your lifejacket, it will inflate from a cylindrical tube which is pre-pressurized air, allow expansion of your lifejacket. But after I flew, I was surprised that I wear necktie while on flight, resulting myself from tiredness though.
So wingview for DA-40, how is it look like? This is the wingview. Dihedral on wingtip. And for those weather watchers, you might see the dark clouds behind... That's the indication of raining. Air exercise for today will be PT Profile, which is the most crucial part of flight before you fly.
Partial layout of Langkawi International Airport. This is our little homebase of HM Aerospace aircraft. There are number of flights you can encounter when approach Langkawi. You might be able to see all those HM Aerospace trainees doing circuit landing, holding at left downwind of  runway. So there is a chapter call Airmanship, which is vital for every flight to lookout for other traffic. For example you might notice an aircraft flying in this area like this.
Another DA-40 around might need a very careful and alert attention on flying. Airmanship chapter is very wide. There are number of things to talk about airmanship, not only traffic, but clouds as well. In aviation world, clouds is basically same as fogging on the ground. Can you guys see things clearly through fog? I bet it's hardly to see. For Visual Flight Rules (VFR) Flights, you need to stay away from clouds with at least 5km visibility. So, when you enter yourself into the cloud, it's basically blind totally.

That's all I could say about this joyride. But another chapter I will mention about my trip to Kuala Lumpur after my backsit on this Cadet Kyle's flight on Malaysia Airlines flight.

(P/S: I felt airsick after flying on this flight due to unstable weather conditions and G effects from the flight.)

Keep updated to my blog at all times as I will bring some magical tips about flying.


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