A cleanup and maintenance

I really like having a hanger to keep the airplane in, It has been a long time since I’ve had this luxury. It’s still kind of warm here in north Georgia but, it beats being out in the direct sunlight. Before you ask, NO, we did not do anything to her that requires an A&P license to do so.

This COVID virus thing has nearly put a stop to our flying. Although Rich and I are flying together again now, we had stopped for some time just for safety. I was also doing some training with an instructor but have not restarted that yet. Soon, very soon.

So much of life has got in the way. The company that I worked for in television broadcasting up and closed down (because of the effects of the virus) with just about every other local company in the area in mid-March so that kinda put a damper on things. Then, my wife and I put one of our homes up for sale and that took not only all of my extra time but also my hobby money as well.

Rich and I got to go out and do some flying the other day and we took turns doing landing so we could get recurrent again. Had a great time but, man was it hot. Even at altitude, there was warm air blowing in. Looking forward to a little cooler weather and getting this house sold so at least somethings can get back to normal.

#cessna172 #pilotslife #flying

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Finding The Right Mount For Your IPad


As the advancement of electronics has entered the cockpit there have been many different types of devices used. Companies like Garmin and IFly have done wonderful jobs of developing personal aviation navigation devices but, now the Apple IPad has finally made its way on board. With all the different downloadable programs available now, if you get lost flying then, well, maybe you just don’t need to be flying. The biggest problem a lot of pilots who fly smaller aircraft find, however, is space to mount a device of this size without covering either the panel or their outside view. Finding room for even the IPad mini in a Cessna 172 or a Piper Cherokee is challenging in its self but, what about a full size 10 inch IPad, like I own?   


Fellow pilot and Facebook friend  Edward Galvis posted his problem-solving solution on a Cessna 172 pilots page on Facebook and it caught my attention. Here is what he wrote. 

“After lots of trial and error, I think I found a way to mount my 10.5 inch iPad in the cockpit that meets the following requirements:”

1) doesn’t block my view
2) keeps it off my knee, less head down time
3) easy to reach and use
4) mostly out of the sun
5) not on the yoke
6) doesn’t block any instruments


Edward purchased all of the on Amazon, here is the list:

Ram Mount Double 1-Inch Ball Adapter
Ram Mount Composite Double Socket Arm for 1-Inch Ball Bases
RAM Twist-Lock Suction Cup Base with 1 inch Ball
Ram Mount Long Double Socket Arm for 1-Inch Ball Bases
Ram Mount X-Grip III Universal Clamping Cradle for 10-Inch Large Tablets (RAMHOLUN9U


All of the separate pieces were purchased for totaling of $121.52. 

I would like to see your set-up. Comment to this post or email me at tommy@privatepilotsindier.com 

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You Better Know Before You Go!

Better know before you go. It is so very important to do not only a proper preflight on your aircraft but also on your intended planned flight. If you are like me, you may live close to two major stadiums that often have flight restrictions during games. With today’s electronics, it makes it much easier to check while in flight but, It is a good practice to do a little groundwork to lighten up the air work.

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Almost ready for the clouds…. Or am I?

Well, I finally bit the bullet and began my instrument training. Lord forbid I call it my IFR training. I have seen too many “Professional Pilots”, if you will, dog the student for calling it IFR and not instrument training so I will just knock that out now. After much review and asking a ton of pilots for recommendations, I ended up with the Sporty’s Instrument course. I have been working on it now for about 2 months but< in my defense, Fall is the Tommy Eldridge instrument training busiest time of the year for me at work so that plays a major factor in my slackness. The other thing is, It’s hard, lol. Well, I don’t guess it’s really hard, there is just so much information to learn. In the Sporty’s course, there is probably 7+ hours of videos to watch and, well….. I’m on my second go around. I was only about halfway down to the runway the first time around, if you know what I mean. 

I find it a little strange that part of the “Instrument” course is high altitude flying and pressurized cabins. I’m not really sure exactly what that has to do with the instrument. I would think that more of a “Commercial” rating study. 

I have had a slow start to the flying portion, once again, due to my workload this time of Rodney Hardin and Tommy Eldridge Instrument training year but, I should be in the clear now. I use a local instructor and friend, Rodney Hardin. You can visit his web page at https://gaaero.com/ We have only had the opportunity to fly instrument once together. I have some instrument time prior to him but I do have a lot of time to make up. 

I’m really looking forward to earning that rating. Not only will it be a great accomplishment but will most certainly add to the level of safety for which I try to fly.

I would like to hear your stories of training for your instrument and what you found to be the most challenging. I would also like to hear how it has changed your stick time. Be sure to leave a comment below and please share this story on your social media page. 

Steer clear and land safe,

Tommy Eldridge 

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I have not had the opportunity to do a whole lot of flying over the past year or so because of the new job I took at Lighting & Production Equipment in Atlanta. This has certainly taken a tremendous amount of my time and energy. I am, however, now using my college degree, which is Television Production. I’m making pretty good money, for a change, and I am having a lot of fun at the same time. Summer is a slow time in the production business so I thought I would take advantage of the opportunity, knock out a BFR and get reacquainted with flying.


I went down to a new doctors office close Atantas Hartsfield Jackson Airport byTommy Eldridge biannual flight review BFR recommendation of an instructor friend of mine, Shawn Hardin, and upped my medical. I must say that out of all of the offices I have gone, this one takes the prize. Very clean and very professional so if you’re in the Atlanta area then go and visit Dr. Thomas Faulkner, MD.  I will again. 


Tommy Eldridge Cessna 707PDNext, I wanted to check out at one of the local flight schools or flying clubs, being that I don’t own an airplane so that I could just go when I wanted and fly. I chose Superior Flight School at KRYY in Marietta. 98% of my air time has all been in the old faithful, Cessna 172. Some of the local clubs and school have a few more options for aircraft but, for the most part, it’s the 172. It’s a very good bang for its buck, It’s very reliable and, not to mention, forgiving. Additionally, my BFR is coming up due in November so no better time than now to freshen up. 


I finally had the opportunity to go spend a few hours with an instructor last Saturday. We flew a 2000 Cessna model 172S with a KLN 94. I explained that I needed to both check out and to take care of my BFR. We went through the oldTommy Eldridge checking out in Cessna 707PD routine of standard, soft field and short field takeoffs and lands, power on and power off stalls, steep turns (my favorite) turn around a point and a little bit of pilot dead reckoning (among a few other tasks as well). Once back at the airport, he spent some time drilling me on the Far/Aim, charts, and navigation. At the end of the day, my instructor was happy with my performance and I now have another airplane to fly.    


Well, It’s time for one of those $100 hamburgers with the guys. There is simply nothing better than the smell of 100LL in the morning and the view from 3000 feet. Come on, let’s fly! 


Safe skies to all,
Tommy Eldridge


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