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Summer 2020 Newsletter

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 28 Aug 2020 Comments: 0

Summer greetings DFC pilots.

A few items of note that I see on the flight line:

Fueling:  It’s surprising how much fuel expands in airplane tanks during hot weather.  This creates pressure that will force it out under the cap or the overflow vent, or both.  It can also be a surprise during preflight when the cap is removed and avgas gushes out all over the wing.

Please do not fill tanks all the way up in this heat.  If you must take full fuel for an extended flight, request the fueler or FBO to stop at least 1” from the top.  Each plane has its own fueling policy, archers to the tabs, 172 1” from the top, cardinal bottom of the collars, etc.  This will provide around 3 hours plus reserve in any of our planes, which is about as long most people like to be in a plane anyway.  Get fuel at your destination or intermediate stop.  After the flight send the receipt  to and it will be deducted from the flight cost.  No plane should ever be fueled to the tip top in summer. 

Glare shields and windscreens:  Please keep all metallic items off the glare shield, including headsets, iPads, iPad mounts, etc.  Also, do not attach suction mounts (RAM) to the front windscreen, which I saw recently.  ADS-B receivers will receive just as well and are best attached to a side rear window where it won’t obstruct vision.  ADS-B are ground based transmissions, not from a satellite.

Control locks:  Please attach after flight.  The wind often picks up unpredictably and puts undo stress on unsecured control surfaces, including cables, bellcranks and bushings, especially ailerons.  It may be calm when you secure the plane but turn windy before the next flight.

Welcome our newest CFI Troy Martinez and our new admin. assistant Joanna Smardz.  Troy migrated south from teaching at a busy flight school at KVGT.  Joanna has become the “go-to” person for new member questions and keeps things running smoothly at DFC.  Joanna just moved to Vegas in April from Boston where she got her Private Pilot License. Her passion for aviation started while working for Virgin America as a customer service agent who got to deice a jet and had a lesson of “what do all these buttons do” in the Airbus A320 cockpit. After that she took to the skies as a flight attendant for United Airlines and finally went for it and got into GA. She grew up in Poland so flying isn’t just fun and exciting, but it also allows her to see her family in Europe. In her free time she enjoys cuddling with her Great Pyranese/Hound mix Lucy and hiking with her fiance. Getting her instrument rating is next on her list, but right now she will be using all her flight attendant skills to try and make everyone happy here at DFC.

Student/Member Achievements:

Private Checkride: Jon Jensen

Student solos: Brianna Francis, Glynis Olgado, Chloe Gardner, Eric Bentley, Tyler Hill, Robert Griffiths, Rudy Chimo, and Todd Austin.

When you see them around the clubhouse, please congratulate and encourage them in their achievements.  We look forward to hearing about their successful checkrides in the next newsletter!

Aircraft news: 

The DA40 N165PS should be back online by early September.  The rebuilt engine is in the hanger and a power flow exhaust will be added along with a new interior.
Cardinal 20313 just came from the paint shop and had the wings and stabilator re-painted along with a new glare shield.  A new power flow exhaust is has also been ordered.
Musketeer 5204M is also getting a power flow exhaust.  This airplane is probably the best time building value anywhere at $99/hr.  

Attention Remos pilots:  when you call for fuel after your flight please write the amount you ordered in the book so the next pilot knows how much fuel additive to add.

Cardinal pilots:  remember to order fuel only to the bottom of collars which is 33 gal usable.  If you need to add fuel for an extended flight please stop at the holes (43 gal usable), to account for expansion in hot weather.

Finally: Please remember the overnight rules of the club.  If you plan on taking a trip in one of the club aircraft, it is the responsibility of the member to make sure the plane gets back Henderson in a timely fashion.  If you do plan on taking a long trip, we have several cross country aircraft, such as the Cardinal, Comanche and Baron that are great options for a long trip.

A power flow exhaust is a type of “tuned exhaust” system that literally increases horsepower by 15-20 percent, increasing climb rates 200-300fpm and cruise speed 5-10 kts.  Ask anyone that’s flown a power flow equipped aircraft and they will enthusiastically attest to the performance increase.  You can read more at

Fly Safe,
Gary Kauffman
Chief Pilot, Desert Flying Club

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