neil on the web!

back in hong kong

2009 Aug 14

I returned to Hong Kong and and work about two weeks ago.

In spite of some technical problems I managed to log more than 7 hours of flying Cessna 172M HSATE over two days in Thailand last week. I was fortunate again to do some interesting and worthwhile flying, and renew friendships.

The first day we (Papa Dave, Daniel, and I) discovered a new airfield down near the Cambodian border. Later we found out that Ko Kut airfield is not in fact new; only upgraded. It now has about 700 M of concrete strip, edge lights, and PAPIs. We may land there on another trip.

The second day I gained experience with high density altitude (over 4000 ft DA), soft, and obstructed landings and departures at Klang Dong airfield. My first landing at Klang Dong was a bit long. I reacted too slowly to the wind increasing as I descended below 100 ft. The adjacent ridge funnels the wind near the airfield. I did a circuit on departure and aced the second soft field landing with 40 degrees of flap. Both of my departures were good but the second was the better of the two. Practice makes perfect! My advice is to treat Klang Dong with great respect (same for Pattaya Air Park): they eat airplanes!

The technical problems with HSATE were avionics related as usual. The new intercom did not work on the first day so we used a portable intercom. The next day ground staff fitted a second radio and wired it to the new intercom. After about 5 minutes into our flight to Klang Dong the receiver failed with (burning smell). I got to practice the Thailand Radio Failure Procedures again. The ground staff fitted a new radio and we took off again after an hour and a half. The transponder only operates mode A intermittently. Time to Spare? Go by air!