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This page contains contact information for us as well as some other information. 

The Crew

Bill King

December 18, 2003

Here's a picture of me after I'd passed my Practical Test! Notice that it's the same plane the I first soloed in 18 years prior. 

November 22, 2003

Finally, got into the air today. Liz and I went to Penn Yann (PEO) and back. It was a beautiful day to fly. This was actually the first time I've exercised my privilege as Private Pilot and flew somebody someplace. Since she is taking her lessons, I showed her a little about pilotage and dead reckoning. Flying over the Finger Lakes, it's kind of difficult to get lost. We saw a huge house fire on the shore of one of the lakes. It was sad to see and we felt bad for the unfortunate souls that had to suffer through losing their house. I only hope that everyone got out.

 I've updated the logbook with the event. 2.5 additional hours towards the 50 needed before I can take the Instrument Test.  

November 14, 2003

Wednesday evening my wife and I went to the meeting of the Buffalo chapter of the EAA, (chapter 46). I had joined the EAA last year and attended one meeting way before I'd decided to build the RV. I would highly recommend anyone attempting to build their own airplane to join the EAA and attend local meetings. It's always nice to get together with like-minded people to commiserate. There are two people in our chapter that have built RV's. One is a 747 pilot who flies the great circle route to the orient! I'm looking forward to the next meeting (which happens to be the Christmas party!). 

October 27, 2003

My dad found this picture of his mother standing next to a Curtis Jenny so I told him I would post it.

October 18, 2003

Went to Royalton Airport today and Greg check me out in the Skyhawk. Today was rather bumpy with a fairly good crosswind, Got checked out OK and signed off. 

Updated the logbook. It's nice to start including PIC time!

October 13, 2003

Had a party yesterday to celebrate my getting my pilots license. My parents gave me this really nice card. My Dad drew the picture on the front.  

Point to the card with your mouse to see the inside

Click on the image inside to see a bigger picture without the talk balloons

 The picture on the inside is of my brother and me taken in the summer of 1956!

October 10, 2003

I passed the practical test yesterday and now I've joined the ranks of Private Pilot! It only took 10 hours!

I got to the airport yesterday morning at 7:30 to meet with Brian (the guy who owns the plane) to go over the aircraft logs before meeting with Mike (the examiner). I wanted to be completely ready for my examination. When Mike got there he started on the paperwork and when he got to my logbook he said "Now I want you to total up your dual cross-country time, and I only want qualified cross-country". Well, to Mike qualified meant every leg of the cross-country has to be more than 50 nautical miles. Greg (my instructor) says that in order to be a qualified cross country only one leg has to be 50 miles (which, by the way, is AOPA's position). That didn't matter to Mike since he had a letter from his district office that explained his position quite concisely. So we started going through all of my dual cross countries pulling out the 50 NM legs and pro-rating the hours for the flight. We needed 5 hours and got 5.1 dual cross country.

Then we did the solo cross country and only got 4.1 hours. So I was .9 short!

The examiner said that his hands were tied and there was nothing he could do about it.  Then Brian said to him. "Mike, you have an office in Canandaigua, right? That's about 60 NM from Royalton airport, Why don't you drive there and I'll send Bill (that's me) on a solo XC to Canandaigua airport and you can do the test from there?"

Mike said that that would be OK and off he went to his other office 60 miles away! (What a great guy he is, I still can't get over how he went out of his way like that to accommodate me)

So I planned a flight to Canandaigua (D38), which worked out to a little over than 30 minutes. If I headed to the Genesee VOR and back up to D38 it kept me out of Rochester C airspace and added a few minutes to the trip. So Brian said "Whatever you do, when you get to D38, Don't land until you've got .9 on the Hobbs!"

The flight to D38 was really a nice flight, you see those finger lakes and all, and the leaves are turning. There's a lot worse ways you can spend your day than flying a plane over west-central NY in the fall.

Anyway, I get to D38 and Mike is already there (When you slow-fly a C150, you don't beat the traffic I guess) and he asks me what kind of navigation did I use getting here. I told him I just headed inbound to GEE and then picked up the 82 radial from and flew for 15 minutes which put me right over top. I had filed a flight plan and activated it, so I had to close it out before we could get started. When I told him that I had to close my flight plan, he said, "Oh, you filed a flight plan? Good, I guess I don't have to ask you any of those questions then". 

So the oral test was about 3 hours and very detailed. I knew the answers about 95% of the time and could figure out most of what I didn't know. I think that impressed him quite a bit.

For the flight test I had to plan a whole new cross country since I was leaving from D38. So I think he went easy on me since he had me plan just to Dunkirk, which meant that I didn't have to explain how I would communicate with any approach controllers since DKK is non-towered. We'd covered all of that in the oral anyway.

So we took off for DKK and I set up my timer and everything. He put the hood on me as soon as I got to altitude, he had me make turns under the hood and all of that stuff. Of course, when he took off the hood, my timer was useless since I'd been making turns and slow-flying. So he says, "OK, let's continue to Dunkirk". It was easy to figure out where I was because of the finger lakes, So I was able to get back on course, and checked the time. 

After that he said, "OK, enough with the cross country" divert to the closest airport. That happed to be Geneseo with it's 5000' grass runway. So that's where I went. We get the Geneseo and I get myself into the pattern and he says "Give me a soft field landing". I did one of my best soft field's ever and he was thrilled. He kept saying "excellent, excellent, excellent". By now he was just checking off items. It seemed to me like he had already decided that I'd passed.

One of the remaining items was a normal takeoff. He tells me to make a normal takeoff (I'm thinking "from grass?"). So I tell him, "I'm going to make a soft-field takeoff because we're on grass". Not even looking up, he reply's "Just get the airplane into the air".

When I finished and got back to Canandaigua he told me that I'd passed and I'm thinking "YES!" and you get this feeling of accomplishment that is hard to describe. And I also thought "AT LAST! Man, what a day! I'm finally done!"

Except that I'm still in Canandaigua.

The flight back to Royalton was my first flight as private pilot. It was a totally different feeling knowing that I could go wherever I wanted. 

But I was tired, and it was getting late. By the end of the day I'd flown for almost 4 hours and answered questions for almost 3. 

It was worth every minute.

Updated the logbook

October 9, 2003

I PASSED! I'm a pilot!

I'm tired. I'll update this tomorrow.

October 8, 2003

The day before my big test. I went flying today to practice slips and various other maneuvers to get ready for tomorrow. I had quite a busy day! I started out by in the direction of my cross-country just to get an idea of the landmarks. Once I was sure of that, I went over to Genesee Country (GVQ) to practice some slips and short/soft field, etc. It was very gusty today so all landing were quite difficult to say the least. That, compounded with the fact that there were at times 3 other aircraft (one a helicopter) in the pattern with me made for some very interesting pattern work. I did one go-around while I was there. After that I climbed to 3500 MSL (about 2900 AGL) and did some power-on/power-off stalls. I then did an emergency spiral descent to about 800 AGL where I set up for some S-turns. Then it was back to Royalton (9G5) where the wind had picked up considerably, I made a normal crosswind landing (well, I only used 20 deg flaps and maintained a slightly higher airspeed due to the gusty conditions). 

Tomorrow the forecast looks excellent for my test. Winds are forecast at 5 MPH right down the runway. I can't believe how apprehensive I am. 

Oh, yeah. I've updated my logbook.

October 4, 2003

Brian from the airport called me this morning and told me my practical test was scheduled for Thursday, October 9th! I also didn't get to fly today. 15-20 knot winds gusting to 26 with light rain. So I've rescheduled my slip practice session for Wednesday.

October 1, 2003

Took the "Practice" practical test today. The airport that I am flying out of (Royalton, 9G5) likes to take their students out for a practice test before you take the real thing. I guess I did pretty well because they are scheduling me for the real thing next week. I felt pretty good except for the forward slip to a landing which I could have done better. I am going to go back out with my instructor and practice a few more forward slips before I take the test. 

The weather's been just terrible around western New York lately. The NWS just came out today and said that we are going to get snow in the higher elevations. <good grief>

Anyway, I've updated my logbook.  

September 29, 2003

Scheduled my practice practical test for Wednesday, October 1st. I hope the weather is good but right now, it doesn't seem like it will be. 

September 27, 2003

Today I took some ground instruction from my flight instructor in preparation for the practical test. It was a very good session and I feel (almost) completely ready for the oral part of the practical test. The next step is to schedule a practice test with one of the other instructors at Royalton (9G5). I will be doing that early next week. 

September 24, 2003

I practiced turns around a point and did some Short/Soft field take offs and landings. I also did one go-around. At Royalton airport you get to be pretty good at go-around's due to the local deer population. They are completely unaware of the rules concerning runway incursions. 

I still need to meet with my instructor on Saturday to go over the oral portion of the flight test. He will then sign me off to take the practical test. I've scheduled a practice test with one of the other instructors from the airport. Once I take that, I'll schedule the real thing.

September 22, 2003

Took my last flying lesson yesterday. I've updated my logbook. Next step is to schedule the practical test. 

September 19, 2003

I came across this picture of me in 1986 after my first solo. 



Me in 1986 after my first solo.

September 13, 2003

Last night I made my dual night cross country flight to fulfill the requirement for my PPL. I flew from 9G5 -> DKK -> 9G0 -> 9G5 . It was incredible. The weather was perfect, Sky Clear, unlimited visibility, calm winds. The only plane that was available N73400, a Skyhawk from Royalton airport was this  Skyhawk. I now only need one more hour of simulated instrument before I take my check ride. 

Since there were two empty seats in the back, My wife decided to go with us. This was actually the first time I'd ever piloted an airplane that she was riding in. After the flight, I asked her if she would ever get in another airplane with me. She said she would so I guess I didn't scare her too bad.

The Skyhawk was a nice plane. it climbs at about 700 ft/min with full fuel and three people. That may not seem like much to you RV'ers, but I'm used to a C-150 that climbs at about 400 ft/min with only me in the plane.


August 10, 2003

I started getting my pilot's license in 1985 and as of today I still don't have it. I am CLOSE however, and if you take a look at my logbook you may find that I've actually received it but haven't updated this page with the news yet. 

You can contact me at bill at Make sure you replace the word at with the familiar @ sign. 

Lizzie King

December 8, 2003

Lizzie went flying again and took off unassisted. Way To Go Liz! Updated the logbook

November 13, 2003

Lizzie went flying again yesterday, She says that she's much better at taxiing that last time. Updated her logbook

November 9, 2003

Lizzie started her flying lessons last week! I've included a link to her logbook so you can check on her progress. 

My wife Lizzie will be starting on her license some time the year. She wants to get her license so that when we fly together, she can land the plane if she has to.

You can contact her at lizzie at Again make sure you replace the word at with the familiar @ sign. 

For problems or questions regarding this web contact bill at Be sure to remove the word "at" and replace it with the @ sign. 
Last updated: December 19, 2003.