- Tony Gardner’s talk, 4th May 2016
- News from the PilotAware team
- Paul Reilly (our man in the US) puts Air in to Airbnb
Chilsfold fly in is on Saturday 18th June. All members are all welcome to fly, drive or walk in.
Tony Gardner’s talk, 4th May 2016
Some picture by Dave Websdale of Tony Green’s detailed and authoritative talk with pictures on “WW2 in Worthing with an aviation bent”. The range of sources, including pictures taken by a German pilot during a raid over Worthing was amazing. I certainly came away with a new understanding of German tactics. Ed.
Click on an image to enlarge it.
PilotAware budget conspicuity device quick-assembly kit now in production
From the Pilot Aware team:
Over the past 18 months the PilotAware Community has been building and customizing their own user built conspicuity devices based on the ubiquitous and very powerful Raspberry Pi B+ single board computer coupled with the innovative software developed by Lee Moore of PilotAware Ltd. This has allowed us to see and be seen by the maximum number of other suitably equipped aircraft, for minimum cost.
Over the Winter of 2015 Dave Styles at Aviation Technology and Hardware Ltd (AT&H), has used his vast experience of hardware design, testing and manufacture to design and develop a single board which integrates a brand new radio, barometer and the necessary peripheral equipment to ensure that the board meets the necessary ETSI standard,EN 330-220 which applies to the use of radio equipment in the frequency band 868Mhz.
It’s been a roller coaster ride to meet the exacting standards,achieve volume manufacture and assemble all the other bits, but now it’s done and the results are very good. With correct positioning of the GPS and antenna placement a range of up to 20Km has been achieved in several aircraft types, metal, wood, plastic, tube and fabric and weight shift. More than enough for the local conspicuity application.
Of course if you are lucky enough to have a suitable mode S transponder then by connecting the RS232 link on the Raspberry Pi to the Mode S transponder, you will have the most comprehensive conspicuity device available today. You will be able to see aircraft using PilotAware(P3i) and anyone transmitting ADSB-out, and what’s more they will be able to see you whether they have PilotAware or not. Now that’s impressive!
Consequently, the combination of readily available, off the shelf hardware from multiple commercial sources coupled with the new AT&H Bridge and PilotAware software, provides what we believe is the most cost effective, flexible and expandable platform for use as a conspicuity aid available today. No other conspicuity system, at any price, spreads its safety net as wide as PilotAware and there’s more in the pipeline!
Whilst AT&H Ltd is a separate company to PilotAware Ltd, the good news is that they have agreed to open up shop and supply the hardware. So you know where to go, and to make it easy to remember, AT&H has called the website pilotawarehardware.com. Easy.
What’s more AT&H will supply all of the bits so that you can snap them together and have your own PilotAware Classic unit good to go in minutes. AT&H will also test the bits to ensure that the various parts will work when you plug them together and even load the latest software (with auto update) onto the SD card. Easy.
The latest PilotAware software now alerts you when Mode S bearing less targets are in the vicinity and even better news, it has the feature that everyone has requested but didn’t believe would be available until next year if at all … PilotAware Voice Activation Alert, an audio out feature that warns you of nearby traffic that you can link locally into your headset, intercom or whatever.
The PilotAware Classic kits is £159.99 plus vat.
I’ve put in my order and will post a review once I’ve received the kit and got it going. Ed.
Across the Pond – Accommodation Ideas
So it’s April and I have a small gap in my work schedule what to do… Well it’s Sun & Fun next week but I also need to get my Biannual Flight Review complete. The BFR is an odd one as I need to do my EASA license as well as my FAA license. Maybe I could fly down and combine these ideas?!?!
With this idea it got me thinking as my instructor could only do weekends and SnF didn’t start until Tuesday but maybe I could do a flying holiday around Florida and combine both. Sadly the day I was due to set off my aircraft went unserviceable so it ended up being a road trip but the following tale still applies.
As often is the case in both UK and the US there is never a hotel or B&B next to an airfield if you are planning an overnight stay. Here in the US a large number of the airfields have a ‘crew car’. Those who haven’t heard of this before it’s an old motor that has been donated or purchased that can be used by a pilot to explore the area, say for going out for lunch, all of this for free, donation or nominal fee, just fill the gas back up.
While a few let you borrow it longer or overnight it is not a rule of thumb so it cannot be relied upon. So the question is what to do if you want to go somewhere, like me who wants to fly around in Florida for a few days and stay overnight???
The answer is something that some of you might of heard of. It’s a tool called Airbnb. Here is the website link https://www.airbnb.com/ but it’s also a phone app for most devices that can be downloaded for free.
Basically Airbnb is a tool to allow users to search for anything from a spare bedroom to an entire house at any location around the world. You can read reviews from other users and book online sometimes instantly or after waiting approval from the person who is offer their place. Airbnb adds a small charge for their service on top of the basic cost. While many users are private owners there are also people using it as their reservation system on a proper Bed and Breakfast.
While there are many options near airfields that you could walk to after landing around Florida I thought I would highlight a few of the Aviation Gems I have found during my search.
Geneva is a rural area about 5 miles to the East of Sanford (North of Orlando where the charter airlines fly too) and while there is no municipal airport there it does have an airstrip. One of the tenants of the airstrip has done an amazing job with their hangar / house combo to be able to offer two options. The whole property is often rented out for weddings, parties or for filming. The options are:
Option 1 – Mancave Apartment stay
This place is a small apartment on the balcony in the hangar. It has all the aviation memorabilia you could think of that makes it a fun place to stay. The owner says ‘The space around the hanger is an active garage and maintenance facility. We work on classic cars, some farm equipment and other manly things. Not much feminine about the man cave but the girls seem to like it’. The mancave rents out at $55 per night but with the service and admin fee it comes to $110. Obviously, this will reduce the longer you stay but still not bad at £75
Option 2 – Mancave Apartment stay
This property is the master suite for the hangar home combination in the corners of the unit. It looks well finished and less aviation themed but has all the amenities of a full house with lounge, kitchen and bathroom The owner says ‘Stay in the Master suite of one of HGTV’s Million Dollar rooms featured properties! The Master suite boasts a walk through shower with Bluetooth showerhead. Spacious bed and sitting area with flat screen TV. You will have private use of the entire Inn that includes the Parlor and kitchen. Relax and enjoy the grounds and the patio area. Watch a movie in the theatre. It is all yours for the duration of your stay’. All of this for $75 per night with fees making it $119 for just one night.
Spruce Creek, Florida
Some of you may of heard of Spruce Creek as its the largest Airpark Community in the United States. It has 1,300 homes, not all equipped with hangars or located on taxiways it does have a 4,000ft runway with a championship golf course and used to be the home of John Travolta until he purchased the Boeing 707, that was too big to land so he moved to Jumboair Airpark. Have a look at Spruce Creek here http://www.7fl6.com/. Its well-placed for accessing the space coast and the Atlantic beaches but about an hour drive Northeast from Orlando.
There seems to be 3 properties available within the community. Two are entire houses but one is actually the guest annexe. I actually stayed in this one and was well equipped although it was a little dated it was clean. It had a good sized kitchen, bathroom and a large bedroom. The property has a 2 night minimum at $95 so comes in at $225 including fees for the period. None of the properties appear to be on a taxiway. You are allowed to park in the airfield visitor parking for no charge for 48 hours. From there the above place was about 15 minutes’ walk. The parking area is in the community centre that seemed to have some amazing aircraft within but also a café / restaurant. While having dinner at the café I saw a P51, Stearman and a Pitts Model 12.
Englewood is approximately 20 miles south of Sarasota on the Florida Gulf Coast. The airfield is a municipal grass strip with no FBO or fuel but it does have some properties around the perimeter. There are two places list, one is the entire house but the other is a B&C. The Owner says ‘Our B&B is actually a B&C, where the ‘C’ stands for fresh Coffee in the morning. The Flying Dutchman B&B which is also available as complete 3 or 4 bedroom rental is very unique because it’s located at a small fly-in community (8 planes) and is only 3 car minutes away from the Gulf beaches’. The property has a few rooms and you can stay for 1 night for $109. After all the service fees that comes to $170 which is about £115 at current rates. It seems a good staging point for a trip north around the Florida pan handle or south to the Everglades and the Keys.
While Florida might be out of the reach for some to try these places its certainly worth keeping this idea in mind when flying around the UK. If you get caught by the weather or even a technical fault on the aircraft it might be worth having a look what options you have. Using our local airfield as an example there are more than a dozen options within a ½ mile radius from Shoreham airport. While I cannot comment on the price or quality of these places I know the places I have stayed at using Airbnb I have been happy with the place, location, cleanliness and price.
If it’s your first time when you sign up why not use my link as a recommendation as you will get a free voucher as will I in return for writing this article. Just click the link here. https://www.airbnb.com/c/paulr857?s=8
Paul will be back in the UK this month so you will be able to quiz him about aviation in the US at the July meeting.
For the latest list of events, go to the Events page on the Strut website.
Please suggest/volunteer to organize some more.