Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

The Planning – Useful Load

Posted: January 17, 2014 in Adventure, Flying, Travel

To maximize the fuel we can carry, we must reduce the total load.  So, we have decided to both lose 10-15 lbs of body weight and remove the four rear seats and rear baggage compartment.  We are looking at 100 or 160 gallon collapsable tanks.  With the 160 gallon tank, we get a total of 280 gallons giving us an effective range of 3000 miles with a 1.5 hour reserve and way more options on where to stop and how much fuel to tanker for our next leg.  With this kind of range, we can go from the US to UK non-stop…not that I want to do it.  I have had all of these discussions with my mechanic (A&P and IA).  With this modification, we will have to get a ferry permit for the plane as it is no longer a regular plane.

Now we can start looking at the various flight plans we have been kicking around…..

The Planning – Part 1

Posted: January 16, 2014 in Adventure, Flying, Life, Travel

Before we decide on our route, we need to know how much fuel to carry.  But we can’t decide that until we know the distance of our longest leg.  Well, the longest leg was going to be Hawaii to California, a total of 2100 miles, plus 2 hour reserve in case there was inclement weather at destination.  For that kind of endurance, we would need to at least double fuel capacity from 120 gallons to 240 gallons in our plane.  To carry that much fuel, we have three options, replace the wing tip tanks that currently have 20 gallon capacity to a side and replace them with “dolly parton” tanks with 100 gallons on each side or add metal tanks and plumbing to the cabin or buy the TurtlePacs from Australia, which are collapsable tanks that  could fill up when needed.  Jury is still out on which one we will get and we have a couple of months to decide.

The preliminary flight plan : 24000 miles, 155 hours of flying in 30 days….avg 5.4 hours per day.

The preliminary flight plan : 24000 miles, 155 hours of flying in 30 days….avg 5.4 hours per day.

The route currently seems to be : Indianapolis – Bangor -  Iceland – UK – France – Turkey – Doha – Pakistan – Sri Lanka – Thailand – Phillipines – Australia – Pago Pago – Christmas Island – Hawaii – California – Texas – Indianapolis….. a total of about 24000 miles and 150-175 hours of flying.  This routing will require us to get overfly permits for Greenland, Italy, Greece, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, and maybe even Indonesia…. we will also need to pre-arrange for fuel at all of our landing locations.

Route Option 2. It will shave 3500 miles from the trip.

Route Option 2. It will shave 3500 miles from the trip.

Another decision that has to be made early is the length of each leg.  If we opt for longer legs, then we have 17 flying days to complete this trip and lesser stops means not having to deal with some of the less desirable customs and immigration officials in some of the third world countries.  Haris and I need to decide how we want to structure this trip.  I want it to be educational and fun for Haris.

Lots of planning and not much time….

The Seed…

Posted: January 15, 2014 in Adventure, Flying, Life, Travel

Seven years ago I met a pilot in central Texas along with my, then 10 year old, son Haris.  He recounted a tale of flying around the world in his Cessna 210…. thus the seed was sown….waiting for the right plane, with the right engine, at the right time and the right place…. in 2013 I bought a Beechcraft Bonanza, had the engine overhauled by Powermasters, a Bill Cunningham special IO550 and upon his recommendation, replaced or overhauled everything to establish a baseline.  The only thing lacking was a decent engine analyzer….after discussing with a fellow BT’er (Beechtalk.com member), Wade Naziri, I called his favorite shop, Cumberland Avionics and discussed my options.  We agreed to pursue installing a JPI 930 as it allows removing 8-9 steam gauges…..small steps towards preparing the Bonanza to allow Haris and I to become first time earthrounders !

The planning for flying around the world started in earnest.  Opened a spreadsheet to record and plan all the minute details.  First things first….Haris is a Junior in high school with about 12 hours of instructor led flight training.  Must get him his Private Pilot and Instrument ratings before we launch on our adventure.  Two young budding instructors took up the challenge and will tag team to get Haris done in sixteen weeks plus one whole week of spring break.  Being in school, Haris can only devote time on Friday afternoons and Sundays to complete his flight training…. and it has to be done in a low wing plane to make his transition to the Bonanza easier…. the paln is to allow Haris to be the Pilot in Command (PIC), while I will be his First Officer and the person whosmackshimonhisheadifhemakesmistakes.  The adventure is ON !  There is a lot to be done and we have only 16 weeks to do it in.