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Don't Be Like This Guy


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Friday I was doing touch and goes at my home airport. I had just called my turn from crosswind to downwind on 31, and another airplane, who had not made a *single* radio call until that time, suddenly announces:


"blah blah [didn't catch his type or number] is also entering downwind for 31."


Wait...WHAT?!? I start swiveling my head like a maniac wondering where this guy is. Then I see him, a Lancair probably doing 110-120 knots, up ahead of me, flying at a right angle to the runway from my right, out past the end of the runway. He does a quick right turn, is on the downwind for maybe three seconds, then immediately makes a left turn and calls base. I called midfield downwind and that I have the other traffic in sight.


I mean, really?? If you are going to fly like a douche, at least make calls well in advance so that those of us that want to live to fly another day can get the heck away from you. I almost said something snarky on the radio, but held my tongue and settled for giving him a dirty look as I taxied past him on the ramp.

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I don't know what kind of Lancair it was but for a Lancair IV-P 120K may be fairly common. Same with many twins.


Sure, some airplanes need that speed, canards are fast like that too. But barreling into the pattern like that with no prior radio contact is unsettling to us lesser mortals. :)


CTLSi, I do expect all kinds of shenanigans at my uncontrolled field...but I don't have to like it! :) In fact I much prefer the more relaxed feel of uncontrolled airports, but IMO that relaxation should not come at the price of safety.

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Andy - I agree with you. If I had my way all planes would have radios and transponders and use would be mandatory.


I know many will disagree with this because it would be one more intrusion into our lives and wallets by government.


But, through all my years flying I have seen everything CTLSi talks about and more.


My biggest concern when flying is a mid air. I figure that I can handle almost everything else.


About 2 months ago I almost got hit by what I think was an RV which barreled through the pattern from my 2 o'clock while I was on downwind. No communication, apparently just going somewhere else.


My two cents. Now I stand ready to be flamed.

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I don't know that everybody needs a radio, I'd rather see everybody fly a standard pattern! If you are where people expect you to be, even if not on the radio, you will be seen. If you dart in from who-knows-where and try to make the pattern and all airplanes in it your b!tches, you will likely have or cause problems.


I can see where mandating radios and their use addresses the problem, but I'm not ready to go there. :)

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120kts in the pattern?


Unicom is all about self-defense. Expect no radio, poorly made radio calls, poorly defined locations, runway incursions, guys taking off on taxiways, guys back-taxiing on runways without completing the call they have exited or are taking off again, straight-in turds, midfield crossovers at pattern altitude, calls from guys flying at 10,000 feet as a 'courtesy' they are passing near or over the top, personal chatter, radio call collisions, bad radios with hyper static, a call like this 'will local traffic please identify theymseves', guys calling a 'xwind' turn when they are on base, guys calling a 'base' turn when they are on xwind, guys going long after takeoff then turning downwind from miles out and you have to follow them or cut them off rudely, guys calling touch-n-go then stop on the runway and sit, guys low or high in the pattern fooling you as to what they are up to, guys on the wrong frequency in nearby unicoms making calls....


And the ever fun wind change with guys ready for takeoff on the calm wind runway don't notice the wind coming up and switching. Suddenly the traffic reverses and its chaos.


The mid-air danger is everywhere especially when transition to another local field and non locals are flying low or near pattern altitude and not taking the 'traditional' route (usually one side or the other of a highway).


Have seen all of the above in a weeks worth of flying at my airfield.


True, all of it, have experienced all of it and then throw in some trikes NORDO, or hardly hearing radio above the wind noise (where is he/she ?). Much prefer, (personally), towered airports.



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