I'm sitting in St. Louis waiting for our plane to be fixed. This repair is the third required on our trip to Boston and back. The first was replacing a vacuum pump in Santa Fe; that only delayed us a few hours. The second was replacing a gear indicator switch in Poughkeepsie where we were stopped for a few days anyway. Failure #3 is bad luck, the attitude indicator failed on Saturday morning. Mechanics generally don't work weekends and you have to have parts shipped anyway, so now it's Tuesday and they just installed a new one and it doesn't work, something else is wrong.

The good news is none of these failures was anything serious; the plane flies fine even without fixing them (albeit it's not legal nor smart). The bad news is repairs are delays, multiple days of delay, and it gets a bit tiresome.

The other big slowdown in a little plane is winds. Generally you expect a 10-15kt wind from the west across the US, so you get a tailwind going east and a headwind coming home. But winds change a lot down low and we've had terrible luck. We haven't seen a tailwind yet and half our days have had 25kt+ headwinds, making us travel 20% slower. Between headwinds and other weather our 3 day trip to Boston ended up taking 4.5.

At least we're stuck in St. Louis and not somewhere in the middle of nowhere. It's a nice city.

  2010-10-26 17:02 Z