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Mithras

Around the World Flight - In a Piper Aztec

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For anyone interested in trying their hand at a round the world flight or two, but having no interest in biplanes (as my signature shows, I've had an interest in that area myself), the Alabeo Piper Aztec is now out. Some of you may remember that in the 60s and 70s the Aztec was flown by two daring/crazy pilots on incredible round the world flights that just beg to be recreated. 

 

Max Conrad flew around the equator in his, and then circumnavigated the earth from pole to pole, unfortunately he failed to take off from the South Pole in his little twin after he clipped the ice with his wing, and his Aztec was buried in the ice by the staff of the base, where it remains today. He set a lot of records and was a ferry pilot for Piper.   

 

http://www.soloflights.org/conrad_text_e.html

 

Sheila Scott flew a Comanche for a time, but she too, swapped this for Mithre, a Piper Aztec, with which she set her own long distance records, including a flight over the North Pole from equator to equator. To simply start the flight she had to fly solo from London to Nairobi. 

 

http://www.ctie.monash.edu.au/hargrave/scott_sheila.html

 

I'm certainly going to try one or more of these flights, the Alabeo Aztec is my new best friend, since it matches closely the layout of my homebuild cockpit, so I feel at home. The Aztec is old, reliable, well used and well loved, unlike the Beechcraft Duke which I tried to like, but its a real 'show off' plane built in small numbers and a rich man's toy. If I could buy a twin, its an old Aztec I could most likely afford. Since I purchased it my logbook shows that I have unbelievably flown it more hours than any of my A2A planes...

 

Inside and out it looks fantastic. It flies well too, though I cannot attest to its authenticity. The sounds are nice, but my Buttkicker chair vibration device just rattled and couldn't pick up many bass sounds from the soundset, so I have switched the engine sounds for those in the Milviz Baron. Lots of bass rumbles now. RealEngine 1.4 (freeware) gives me realistic failable engines that I have to watch carefully. Add Accusim for airflow, turbulence and all those squeaks and groans of an old Aztec and I am sorted. 

 

Finally, picked up an Aztec handbook from a UK web vendor, dated 1968. I was swapping emails with the site owner who told me that the book has an exotic history, it came from Nigeria, where the plane was registered in the 70s and 80s. Now that's perfect ... an old twin bush plane from Africa should be just what I need for a round the world trip! 

 

Bon Yoyage!! :)


One question ... what problems with FSX geography will I have when I try to fly over the poles? And will there be any ice pack in the north, or is it all open water?

 

I have Aerosoft's Antarctica, which does say in the manual that there is some kind of problem, and so Scott Base is not modelled.

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I have settled on recreating Sheila Scotts equator to equator flight of 1971, and my planning is almost finished. Sheila flew very long legs, always in excess of 10 hours, but I am going to stick with 2-3 hours so that I can fly every day after work - that's about 300 nm in my Aztec. Of course I will follow her course as closely as I can, but will have to make additional stops.

 

Sheila flew: Nairobi, Kartoum, Benghazi, Malta, London, Bodo Norway, Andoya Norway, Nord Greenland, over the Pole (slowed by low cloud, headwind and an unretracting nosewheel that almost killed her) to Barrow, Fairbanks, Anchorage, San Francisco, Honolulu to Canton Island just the other side of the Pacific equator. After that she flew back to London via Australia breaking additional speed records. She was forced to stop due to very bad weather at times, particulary just before the dangerous polar crossing, and at London where she found her flat had been burgled while she had been in the air.

 

Now my route is established (with extra stops in between) I intend to quickly check each runway out with the trike to ensure there are no trees on runways or horrible scenery or elevation issues, all of which would ruin a great flight.

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The trickiest part will of course be the polar crossing, FSX struggles with this region, since like any 3D net, the flat map sections of the FSX world meet up and bunch together at the poles, causing strange optical effects. I have slewed there to to 90 degrees north to see what I should exoect, and it looks OK, not realistic, but ok.

 

I assume navigation will be my biggest problem. Sheila had to use dead reckoning, and sighted intermittently with an sun compass, yet managed to pass directly over the pole (NASA scientists were tracking her by satellite). Like her I don't think my compass will work at that latitude, instead I have tracked a course using GPS just for this leg, to take me over the pole, after which I will leave the magenta line behind and head for the Canadian coastline. All of my other navigation will be by VOR, NDB and by VFR map reading and dead reckoning. It is true to 1971 and is a much more exciting and 'active' way to navigate than slaving the autopilot to the GPS for hours.

 

On fuel and loading, whilst only flying for 2-3 hours at a stretch, I feel that I would be missing out on the Sheila Scott experience if I did NOT dangerously overload my Aztec, her extra fuel tanks took the place of the passenger seating. I will start my flights with maximum fuel and loading to simulate the difficulties she sometimes had in gaining height, particularly from airfields like Benghazi (where she almost ran into hills, and where, at the airfield that night she was assaulted and almost raped by locals- though she passes it over breezily in her account).

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That sounds like fun, Paul. Enjoy your flight. I don't think you need to worry about being attacked by locals though, so that's a relief! :LMAO:


Fr. Bill    

AOPA Member: 07141481 AARP Member: 3209010556

Interests: Gauge Programming - 3d Modeling for Milviz

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I'm certainly going to try one or more of these flights

 

Wow, this is an AMAZING adventure you're embarking on my friend! 

 

Please keep us informed of your progress! Some screenshots or pictures of your cockpit along the journey as well might be very interesting.

 

 

 


and at London where she found her flat had been burgled while she had been in the air.

 

 

 


at the airfield that night she was assaulted and almost raped by locals

 

The world is an interesting place. You're out there fighting for your passion and life, come back home, and just find out it's been raped... 

Sadly, the biggest danger out there in the wild is other people.

 

 

 


I assume navigation will be my biggest problem.

 

How are you planning each leg?  Could you show us an example of an "interesting" one, once you've done it for sure?

 

 

 

I'm really amazed at how little attention this thread is getting!


Jaime Beneyto

My real life aviation and flight simulation videos [English and Spanish]

System: i9 9900k OC 5.0 GHz | RTX 2080 Super | 32GB DDR4 3200MHz | Asus Z390-F

 

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Thanks Jaime, I plan legs using PlanG, and do this via VORs, but will make notes on the land features that I will be passing in order to check my progress.

 

The weirdest leg so far is the polar leg, with a straight line distance between Spitsbergen and Barrow, but look what PlanG has to do to try and deal with my impossible flight!!!

 

map1_zpslz4cokbj.jpg

 

I dontt have the endurance fly that complete leg, it took Sheila 17 hours in the air I think. So I will get to the pole, then divert to Alert in Canada, on the tip of that large island just to the west of Greenland.

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Very interesting Paul.

 

I'm following this thread and await your further updates!

 

BTW, don't forget to add an essential item to your checklists, you have to take a couple of empty bottles like this one, hehehe:

aquarius-15-l.jpg


Jaime Beneyto

My real life aviation and flight simulation videos [English and Spanish]

System: i9 9900k OC 5.0 GHz | RTX 2080 Super | 32GB DDR4 3200MHz | Asus Z390-F

 

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I get it! ;)

 

I read that Sheila used a Tupperware container and had to discretely empty it at each stop, but once a helpful ground attendant took it away to fill it with more sandwiches! :0

 

I'm finishing a book on the ancient Egyptian army tonight (after more than a year of writing), once it goes to the publisher tomorrow, I will start the flight from Nairobi! :)

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Hi Paul,

 

If you are having issues posting images here, you need the BBCode link.  More info here - http://www.avsim.com/topic/479802-how-do-i-post-a-screenshot/

 

Best regards,


Jim Young | AVSIM Online! - Simming's Premier Resource!

Member, AVSIM Board of Directors - Serving AVSIM since 2001

Submit News to AVSIM
Important other links: Basic FSX Configuration Guide | AVSIM CTD Guide | AVSIM Prepar3D Guide | Help with AVSIM Site | Signature Rules | Screen Shot Rule | AVSIM Terms of Service (ToS)

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8:00 am Nairobi, the equator to equator flight, flying over the North Pole, began.

 

2016-4-26_17-7-13-715_zpsknzihd8b.png

 

At Jomo Kenyatta airport the rain came down in a tropical thunderstorm, but within 30 minutes I had flown up and out of it to 10,000’ (local elevation is 5,500’).  I flew the leg to Soroti in Uganda using dead reckoning rather than VORs, just to keep my skills up.  The highlight was a fast pass over Lake Nakuru, to see several large flocks of flamingos (courtesy of Aerosoft’s African Adventures).

 

2016-4-26_20-43-21-532_zps1mfwcjyf.png

 

I’m still unsure whether to use VOR navigation or dead reckoning, but in the spirit of 1971 I guess VORs should be used, with dead reckoning to check my track.

 

That was an easy flight once I had cleared the thunderstorm.  Sheila Scott says very little about her flight to Khartoum and Benghazi, but on the outbound trip TO Nairobi before the flight, she had to divert around restricted airspace to Idi Amin’s Uganda, not a safe place to turn up to uninvited. Like Sheila, I am sure a friendly British ATCO will have quietly ushered me to a quiet part of the airport so as not to attract attention.

 

Tomorrow a short hop to Juba. 

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Tricky flying! Soroti in Uganda was under a thunderstorm today, but my motto, just like Sheila Scott's is to go for it! I was forced to fly around 500' QFE under the steel grey clouds, rain and lightning, trying to reach Juba in South Sudan.

 

I flew in a Twin Otter over the Masai Mara a couple of years ago, and the FTX Global captures East Africa superbly, lone Acacia, or groves dotted around. After an hour things went wrong. I have Real Engine 1.4 installed that produces failures for flaps, gear, CHT, oil temp, over revving and manifold pressure if you fly 'beyond the limits'. I heard an engine cough and die just east of Gulu (HUGU), then checked CHT, over temperature! I opened the cowl flaps, cut my speed, feathered the prop than waited until it cooled to restart. This was successful ... I looked at OAT and flying at 3-400' it was 28 degrees. No wonder the engine struggled!

 

2016-4-27_16-38-53-620_zpse4kaozl3.png

 

The storm was clearing, and I was looking for the White Nile to follow it to Juba 100 nm distant, I was able to climb a couple of thousand feet, caught the VOR set my heading bug to match but soon had to drop down to 200' when I hit more storm clouds. I lost the VOR too but was able to follow my heading bug instead. Lucky :) Of course I forgot to enrich the mixture as I descended and so RealEngine 1.4 made them rev and splutter too. Gulp. What a fool ...

 

I hit the White Nile, the VOR came alive and I sailed easily into Juba. Sheila says nothing about her visit to Juba. Juba is a tough place, plenty of old planes like DC3s and aircraft wrecked, shot up or in storage. There are military vehicles around too. Can't wait to leave tomorrow.

 

2016-4-27_18-22-46-274_zpsa33sbgbq.png

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I'm enjoying the stories very much while following your progress! :Applause:


Fr. Bill    

AOPA Member: 07141481 AARP Member: 3209010556

Interests: Gauge Programming - 3d Modeling for Milviz

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Thanks n4GIX ... I'm not making anything up, stuff happens on these very very very long flights, just as in RL!!

 

Today I flew north to Malakal in South Sudan, but rather than track due north following an outbound radial for 280 miles I opted to follow the White Nile northwards VFR for a more interesting flight, and I picked up Malakal's low level VOR at only 50 nm out from the airfield. The thunderstorms have abated and I could fly around scattered cloud at 9-10,000' no problem. At 38 degrees on the ground, it was still 18 degrees up at FL100!
 
Two shots of the White Nile, one exterior, the other from my (home pilot) view sat at my Aztec twin cockpit I built 18 months ago!
 
2016-4-28_17-16-19-885_zpsxwbof1zg.png
 
SAM_2377_zpsbniyud4q.jpg
 
My plan is to mirror Sheila Scott's flight, but with extra legs, getting to Khartoum, flying the Nile to Cairo, out across the desert to Benghazi then Malta and onto London, Norway and then the Pole. After Barrow I can relax and enjoy all that Orbx scenery down to San Francisco.
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It took a couple of 2-and-a-half hour flights to get to Abu Simbel. Again I decided to hand fly, following the River Nile northwards rather than just flying straight, and level, with the autopilot. I like to use the AP only when I need to grab a drink, when I returned five minutes later, halfway to Khartoum, I found the sun was already on the horizon and a towering cliff of thunder clouds blocked my path ahead. It looked like I would have to drop down to a few hundred feet again, until I spotted a chink opening up and dashed through the lightning storm to the other side. It was here I found that Microsoft had left out a stretch of the Nile, although the landclass along its banks persisted and was easy to follow. The view was lovely, the russet orange sunset clung on to the edge of a dark blue sky and painted the lightning-licked clouds with purple.

 

2016-4-29_17-13-46-668_zpsoeqcoepf.png

 

I touched down at Khartoum without any incident. Lots of record breaking flyers pulled in here on their way to Capetown, including Sheila Scott and Amy Johnson. There were a couple of Antonov An12 ‘Cubs’ on the apron and a United Nations Hercules, as I taxied past (Ultimate Traffic 2). In the morning, with the OAT at 42 degrees C , I again followed the Nile northwards from Khartoum all the way to Lake Nasser and Abu Simbel, where an Egyptair Embraer was waiting at the threshold for a flight to Cairo.

 

My left fuel tanks are draining faster than my right tanks, and I don’t know why. That could get me into trouble on a longer leg …. Mmmm.

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under the steel grey clouds

 

Love it!  Hope you get the fuel tanks figured out!


Jim Young | AVSIM Online! - Simming's Premier Resource!

Member, AVSIM Board of Directors - Serving AVSIM since 2001

Submit News to AVSIM
Important other links: Basic FSX Configuration Guide | AVSIM CTD Guide | AVSIM Prepar3D Guide | Help with AVSIM Site | Signature Rules | Screen Shot Rule | AVSIM Terms of Service (ToS)

I7 8086K  5.0GHz | GTX 1080 TI OC Edition | Dell 34" and 24" Monitors | ASUS Maximus X Hero MB Z370 | Samsung M.2 NVMe 500GB and 1TB | Samsung SSD 500GB x2 | Toshiba HDD 1TB | WDC HDD 1TB | Corsair H115i Pro | 16GB DDR4 3600C17 | Windows 10 

 

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