Low IFR in a Bonanza

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Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby Iceberg » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:03 am

Here's a video I found on flying IFR in a Bonanza.
In SA many shy away from real IMC flying even though they may be IF rated.
I think it is a pity - many VFR into IMC accidents still occur in SA - I believe this number can be reduced if more pilots learn to fly the real deal.

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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby 747TDR » Mon Oct 23, 2017 6:21 pm

Voluntary IF flying in a twin is one thing, but voluntarily strapping yourself to a single and going and playing in the clouds is something very different. Sure, you'll know your departure and arrival cloud base, and perhaps one or two alternates along the way, if cross country, but there's no way I feel that true IMC flying in a single is a good idea.

You have no idea what the base is along the route, even if is out to the GF, and things like cumulo granite come into play when you start venturing off further afield.

I know there are guys out there who may say that it's pessimistic etc. to expect a failure, but I've had too many issues when flying singles to be overly trusting of them.

The only actual IF I've done in a single was coastwise into EL for the ILS onto 11. Wasn't a pleasant feeling.

I'd rather see what terrain I'm putting her down in, than feeling my way in.
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby Hop Harrigan » Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:33 pm

Hi Icberg,
Great video and I fully agree with you. The trouble in SA is that we don’t get much opportunity to fly in actual IF. Here on the Highveld we rarely have ‘soft’ IMC, Weather is either CAVOK or ‘hard’ IMC ie thunderstorms.
I fly all my xcountry trips on an IF flight plan and always request an instrument approach regardless of the weather. In the last two years I’ve only had one full IF letdown although I have done a couple of approaches in very poor vis.
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby Iceberg » Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:27 am

Hop, I found good use for the IF rating when going from coast inland or the other way round -
as per the other thread that you started on the subject.

Often there is broken SC on and around the escarpment.
Also flying from Gauteng to the lowveld in the morning - there is usually a layer of broken SC early over the lowveld in summer.

This is usually pretty benign if you are current and well prepared. The facilities at e.g. Hoedspruit and the friendly controllers make breaking cloud a breeze. Trying to do the same trip in the same conditions VFR has resulted in many accidents as we all know.

So it is seldom that I penetrate building cumulus clouds - sometimes it is necessary to get where you want - but this is where experience and good judgement becomes important to end the day well.

You have probably read some of Richard Collin's books. He flew single engine IF for 50 years+. Excellent reading for anyone interested.
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby Hop Harrigan » Tue Oct 24, 2017 10:33 am

Hi 747,
My personal opinion (and I believe the stats will support me) is that any flying, particularly IF in a ‘light twin’ eg Baron/Seneca /etc, is more dangerous than in a single. My second engine is a BRS chute, which I believe is a better option than a rotating second engine. Anything the size of a King Air or bigger and I believe the second engine is the better option.
Oh, and I stay away from the cumulo-anything...and the ice
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby HASELL » Tue Dec 05, 2017 4:02 pm

I am a VFR PPL. That video is an absolute eye opener. I have seen other IFR videos before, but down to the deck to minimums like this is something else. New appreciation for why there is an IF rating...

And yes, I would prefer a Seminole or a Baron instead of a single....
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby wysiwyg » Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:05 am

The following is a bit of a ramble, but I hope it will get some pilots thinking and hopefully save someone from a lot of drama (or trauma).

In a properly equipped aircraft, with a rated and current pilot IFR isn't a problem.
Avoid IMC with carbureted engines (carb ice) and non turbocharged engines (less power at altitude).
Any turbocharged twin is better than a single piston engine aircraft in IMC provided the pilot is correctly trained and current. Besides having the second engine, twin engine aircraft provide system redundancy (a second alternator - for instrumentation , windshield and prop heat - and a second vacuum pump - for instruments and de-icing boots - etc). However, I do concede that some well equipped aircraft could have some of the additional features.
Of course a single engine turbine aircraft that is correctly equipped with system redundancy makes flight in IMC safer too.

Some of the big problems with flying in IMC is (i) airframe and prop icing (few light aircraft are suitably equipped) and when there is heavy overcast you can bet that you will be in the freezing levels and (II) most light aircraft don't have weather radar (Cb's, turbulence, heavy rain / hail. Having said that, most radars won't show hail if it isn't associated with rain).

Being pessimistic is a good thing. All pilots should always be asking "what if?" I.e. Always have a back door. But once you start the flight, having confidence is a requirement.

Brs chutes - I am old school. I believe they tempt some (maybe many) pilots to push it and secondly, what good is it to be dangling below a chute in IMC with other aircraft in the clag below you. And they don't provide any system redundancy.

"many VFR into IMC accidents still occur in SA - I believe this number can be reduced if more pilots learn to fly the real deal" I believe that less accidents would occur if pilots were better planners, more patient, [b]disciplined and avoided get-home-itis. They would be better drivers too!
[/b]
Flying IFR isn't difficult but just having an IF rating isn't just what it's all about. Flying in IMC is a very different story. Key words, equipment, training, currency, preparation and attitude. And remember, in IMC a 'small' technical snag or a mistake by the pilot can easily kill you AND YOUR LOVED ONES.

My thoughts above are based on over 18 500 hrs in ALL types of weather in many types of aircraft. . I.e. not those of an armchair pilot ;) Btw, I don't fly in IMC in piston single engine aircraft. Yes I am chicken. I fortunately learnt not to do that about 30 years ago. I don't scud run either in any type of aircraft.

If you are undecided about whether to go or not, sit down and have an alcoholic drink. That gives the weather at least 8 hours to improve.

And finally, IFR and IMC do not have the same meaning.
Thoughts of an 'old' pilot:
Money cannot outperform physics,
A Mk1 one eyeball is the best gizmo for VFR terrain avoidance,
I have seldom learnt anything by talking, but by listening .........
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Re: Low IFR in a Bonanza

Unread postby apollo11 » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:30 pm

Such a good read and thought provoker...
Straighten up and fly right!
Perry



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