Sunday, August 25, 2013

Week Twenty-One: Form Complete! On to Instruments

Hello again,

It's been a pretty good week! Once again I've been double-turning almost every day, but mostly the focus this week was getting to my Form check ride and knocking that out. After flying through the last rides of the formation block, I was ready to go on Friday for my check. What's cool is they schedule you for the last three or four flights with the same student on your wing, so you really get a sense for how they fly and vice versa. My check ride buddy and I flew pretty well together, which definitely makes a big difference.

Anyway we prepped up well with some final studying and chair-flying, and went in on Friday ready to go. The ride went very well for me, from first to last. I was on the wing on the way out and then led back. Overall everything was well-flown on both sides, and as I drove around the traffic pattern for my landing I knew I was good. When I greased the landing that confirmed it. I came out of that check ride with an Excellent! My buddy was nervous because he forgot an important checklist on the ground (the one where you remove your ejection seat's safety pin) but got a Good. So that was awesome, the first two form checks in D Flight and they were both passes.

Funnily enough, both him and I were scheduled for instrument sims right after our check ride, so we went off to those. I was pretty tired by that point, so my sim didn't go perfectly, but overall it was fine too. Sims really are dependent on who your IP is. Most of them are pretty old dudes who are caught up in their old glory days, and sometimes you get a sim IP who is just absolutely awful. There are four or five who when you see you're scheduled with them you just want to curse profusely... But other times you get a really good IP and it's much better.

Right now I am three sims away from being T-6 Sim Complete and I am now only about 17 T-6 rides away from completion! A lot of these rides will get knocked out over our weekend cross country coming up on the 6th through the 8th. Time-wise, we are a month away from track select as of tomorrow. So we're on schedule to complete T-6s and find out our next aircraft.

Starting this week those of us who went form first will be moving solely into instruments, just like the guys who went instruments will now be getting more form rides. I am also scheduled for two night rides tomorrow and Tuesday, so that should be pretty awesome! Even if there are no cloud layers to deal with, when you fly at night you HAVE to fly off your instruments since there are no visual cues available at all. Plus you're dealing with lighting issues in the cockpit, since the sun isn't around to light up what you want to see. It should be a pretty cool experience.

I am feeling slightly under the weather, so hopefully I won't have to go DNIF (duties not to include flying) tomorrow... But I'd also rather not mess with my sinuses by exposing them to higher altitudes and possibly end up with a sinus block. Not fun, plus I'd not be finished with UPT on schedule at all. One of my classmates had that happen to him. He's a 1st Lieutenant now since he waited an entire year before he could get into another class. A year in Enid, not flying?? Yeah, no thanks.

Take it easy!

~ Dakota

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