With Wings As Eagles: Craig P. Steffen's Blog


2013 March 17 21:39

This post is just to show the baffling seals in my airplane's engine. These were taken at the beginning of November when I was looking at the airplane for the first time.

Seeing the Redstone

2013 March 02 21:34

A couple of weeks ago, my wife and I took a first trip on the Mooney to visit the rocket museum at Huntsville, Alabama. I'm happy to say she thought the trip was reasonabe; she didn't hate flying in the Mooney. Yay!

It was both of our first time there; we were only there a couple of hours, but it was neat trip. We saw some pretty cool artifacts. Here's me beneath the business-end of a Saturn-5 rocket that's stacked outside the museum.

It's immense. For some reasons the Saturn 5s I've seen inside on their side (at Huntsville and at Cape Canaveral in Florida) dont' seem as big as the one outside that's upright.

That's a massive showerhead!

Not really--it's an early fuel/oxidiser injector for an F-1 rocket engine; 5 of those engines powered the Saturn-5 first stage.

We rented a car to drive from the local municipal airport to the museum. It was a Lincoln SUV. Very nice, the panel was really slick and had a nice digital turn-on sequence.

It drove nicely, and was very comfortable. However, I found the environmental controls difficult to use. It took us 10 minutes to figure out how to turn on the air conditioning.

Oh, and I never really thought of why it was called the Redstone missle or the Redstone arsenal. Becky pointed out the dirt--and that's probably why.

Another first

2013 March 01 23:33

Buying the airplane involved a bunch of firsts for me. First time buying an airplane, of course, and first time making an offer on one. (I got luck that my first offer was accepted). And there will be lots of other firsts as I take it on trips, and do other stuff.

I took a lot of trips down to see the airplane while buying it. First I went to the sellers place to look at it. Then to where it was being inspected. Then during Thanksgiving week my wife and I drove down to see it up close and finish up some business.

The money moved in November, and the plane was finally ready to fly again in January. So I had to go down to the plane by car, and fly the plane back...but that involves another person if I'm not going to leave a car there. So my friend Wayne (thanks!) rode down to Georgia with me, dropped me off, and then drove my car back. This is him driving away in my car--my car leaving somewhere without me is not something I see very often.

I got dropped off on a Sunday and we didn't leave until Tuesday (we meant to leave Monday but that's another story). While I was down there I drove myself (and my instructor) back and forth to our hotel in a rental car. The agency at the small airport only had a couple of cars; of the ones they listed off, then one that I picked was a Mitsubishi Galant. It was a fine car; firmly middle-of-the-road in all respects. I wouldn't go out of my way to get one again, but I won't avoid one either. Here are some dashboard photos.

Everything off:

Key on warning light test:

started and ready to go

later, all warmed up (temp higher, rpm lower)

And at night. This may have been the morning I picked up the airplane

Not much of a post, but I like to put things down about cars when I still remember them. More stuff about airplanes soon. With luck I'll blog more this month.