* Posts by ted frater

114 publicly visible posts • joined 13 May 2008


Please shut up about the Mull of Kintyre Chinook crash

ted frater

Reply to Tocsin

sport aviation

Abinitio pilots only,

VMC conditions only no IMC equipment

suitable weather only

open FIR areas only.

Re icing at MCL, flight should have been postponed till better weather came through.

If it was me I would have refused to fly given the weather forecast, aircraft limitations

and the non urgent nature of the flight plan.

Even if that meant Id have to disobey orders. Afterall,

It wasnt a military offensive strike against an enemy.

we had deicing on the props and wing leading edges so we could fly through the icing level.

A must read for all pilots is Ernest Gahn's Fate is the Hunter.

ted frater

Crew broke basic safety rules

We wont ever know what actually happened, but we do know the reason for the crash.

The crew broke these basic safety flying rules.

You dont fly in cloud, at low level, on instruments when there is high ground nearby.

onwhat was essentially a passenger/civilian flight.

I flew that area on a regular basis with my captain Flt Sgt. Sikierkowski on maritime reconnaisance .Even if he was told to fly at a certain height by senior ops personell, once in the air, he always flew 2000ft above the highest hills nearby.

Thats why he had 20,000hrs in his log book.

As captain of his craft, its was his responsibility to ensure the safety of his crew, aircraft and mission not the senior officer who authorised the flight. Afterall he was there, the senior officer was not.

.in the same way its everyones responsibility when driving a carto do so without causing an accident. You should never drive beyond you ability to see and stop.

If the crew of this chinook had doubts about the serviceability of this craft, why on earth didnt they fly at a height that gave them time to address any technicsl failure and send out a mayday?

when flying I was taght to fly only within the known flight envelope of the craft, then to cover unforseeable circumstances you add an extra 10% margin.

Ive known plots to break these basic rules and when events catch them out, they have no safety margin .As our flying club instructor I made the above points crystal clear to every abinitio pilot.

Pilots that dont stick to the rules pay the price aviation extracts for breaking the rules. It still upsets me when theres an accident but every pilot has to make these decisions everytime he flies.

Plotting air hours angainst accidents shows an interesting trend.

In the beginning pilots are basically scared of screwing up so they take more care.

Once they have several hundred safe? hours on type in their log book, there is a rise in accidents.

Ill leave it up to the reader to work that one out.

The captain of a craft always has to have the last word on safety, not anyone else.


Japanese chap sets paper plane flight record

ted frater

Eiffel tower launch

Many yrs ago i launched a paper plane off the top of the Eiffel tower.

It was possible to watch it for at least 10 mins as it was gliding about in the air, subject to various up and down currents. I lost sight of it when my attention was distracted and couldnt find it again.

after all a paper plane without any means of propulsion is just a glider.

Anyone that has flown hang gliders will confirm that unless your rising air rate is greater than your sink rate you will inevitably keep going downwards till you hit something.

so it could be that the jap chap chose the time when perhaps the floor was warmer thanthe air in the hangar and thus had some rising air to support his paper plane.

Heidemarie 'Toolbag' Piper resigns as NASA astronaut

ted frater

Where was a piece of string?

Ive a pair of post Office telegraph pliers here from the 1930's, they have a loop on one of the handles for a piece of string. Seems NASA hadnt learned this basic lesson,

Saved the pole man the trip down to the ground to pick them up, on a cold day.

If your likely to drop it( in gravity of course) or in space let it drift away,

Put a piece of string on it.

As to why women and tools dont normally mix,

Possibly because the male hunter made tools to improve his skills whereas the female made the home. Differnt mind set.

I think handling tools or home making is an inherited skill from as far back as the stone age.

EU calls hearing over Google 'orphan' treatment

ted frater

Simple answer to orphan books and untraceable Authors

Google should be able to scan any of the above books they want, at their cost, and make them available for free as a pr exercise.

so long as they DO NOT aquire eternal copyright to the work.

They make enough money as it is.

Traceable authors should have a standard rate of royatly.

Lets have openess up front from google. It would be to your credit.

NASA takes stick over feet and inches

ted frater

US Aircraft

The US aircraft industry still builds aeroplanes to imperial standards, Why?

cause it would be too costly to change, not just the drawings and jigs but all the supporting hardware manufactureres make for example all rivets and nuts and bolts to imerial standards and ali sheet and plate in thous.

Most US machine tools are programmed in thous of an inch,

Yers of course metric is used in US industry when its economic to do so.

At present its not economic to change the whole of the US manufacturing base to metric.

On to something much more important,

It shuld be up to the purchaser to deside how he wants to buy something. for example I dont want half a kilo of spuds i want 1lb of them/,or bananas for that matter.

another stupid metric measument is newtons, If you think foot pounds it means what it says, so many pounds load at so many feet from a fulcrum point.


Might as well call them Darwins or Copernicii.

Data watchdog clears mobile phone directory

ted frater

Pretending to be a phone answering dog

Ive been exdir on my BT land line, and am also on the phone preference no calling list.

Ive had occasional marketing calls from overseas, and BT say they cannot stop these.

As yet none on my mobile payg sim.

however ~Ive had fun with the odd call on my land line, I pretend im a phone answering dog, and bark very loudly, then shout in a womans high pitched voice to my dog to put the phone down. It really pisses them off.

othertimes im very rude in a german voice.

Have fun at their expense!! I say.

DVLA issues double tax discs

ted frater

DVLA and fitness to drive

OK, so the DVLA make mistakes, and folk post their bad experiences here.


IF you need a medical to drive an HGV if your over 70 yrs, and theres a doubt about your fitness to drive ,

The DVLA have a very competent medical dept, that takes all the facts, and listens to what you have to say. As well as the speciallists reports to them , I also wrote at length to them.

.i went throught that mill last year, all the cardiac speciallists covered their asses and said your not fit to drive.

I disagreed with them all and said so. they didnt like that, so i took it up with the DVLA and surprise surprise!!

A letter came just before christmas last year to say I met ALL their medical requirements!!.

Mind you, you need to be the sort of peron who doesnttake no for an answer.

they were very good. Even my GP was surprised at their response.

Women's lust for shopping linked to periods

ted frater

Re AC at 18.04

Most men arnt aware of their own hormonal cycle?

Speaking for yourself mate?

Or are you on bromide in your tea? the standard joke for those doing national service, apart from the normal morning rise if you know what I mean,

An average male in his teens and 20's should be fully aware of his hormonal cycle,

it will makeitself obvious pretty much daily.

By the time hes 70 plus it will have dropped to a weekly event.

So i have found.

Not complaining tho,


Jacqui Smith pulls in another TV psych in violence probe

ted frater

Reply to Sarah Bee,

Perhaps you can copy my post to me in an email as I dont recall saying what you have quoted in your rejection message. If I had been able to post to your comments via email then Id have a record.

No intention to upset you. Just telling it like it is.

Believe me.

Ted Frater

Dorset UK.

Police law-interpretation: What next?

ted frater

the other side of policing

My sympathies to those of you who live in urban areas,

were in rural S UK,

the nearest CCTV is 20 miles away.

Our local police consist of 1 full time officer with 2 community pc's.

we know them personally, by christian names.

We ,with them run a rural watch scheme.

They have given us their mobile nos!! so if we need them we can call direct.

They know that if we need them they are 40mins away, and that we take it on ourselkves to provide our own security.

If you havent seen what a tractor front loader will do to a car or van, spike it lift it and roll it .

Any crim or crook takes a big risk trying us on.

we live down a long track way at the end of a country lane.

Nearest neibour some 2 miles away.

No street lights, no mains leccy no mains water no refuse collection. Completely independent for everything. Just the way we like it. Our law man calls in for a cuppa at least a couple of times a year. were his eyes and ears out here.

We work together to keet our part of the country crime free.

Why cant the urban police do the same for the urban area?

If they can do it here then they could do it there too.

Debt collection can be harassment, rules court

ted frater

TV licencing and British gas.

My father in law died. We returned his TV licence for a proata refund ,which duly arrived.

His house was sold and a new owned moved in.

we then had a rude demand from TVL demanding the renewal of my father on law's licence.

We wrote back to say he had moved to the c/o the local church where hewas buried, and that they should write to him there.

Also we said that if they didnt believe this they should send round one of their fancy detector vans to his old address and check it out.

We heard nothing more.

Im now eligable for a free TV licence. Im just awaiting a renewal demand letter with which Im looking to having fun with!!!.

On a more serious note, BG had the cheek to demand payment for gas supplied to my daughter's flat for 2 yrs BEFORE she moved in.

The man I dealt with actually gave me his place of work address as I offered to come and see him in person to sort it out. I told him I looked forward to seeing him in court.

I then suggested that if as an agent of BG he didnt stop their harrassment he would bring misfortune unto himself.

It got things done at last.

BT's Phorm small print: It's all your fault

ted frater

A possible answer

My problem is ive been with Virgin .net since they started, and by and large have been happy with the service. so lots of folk know my email address and my small website I have with virgin.

Now I would find it a real chore to try and remember to let everyone know a new email addrees if I change ISP to avoid Phorm If Virgin decide to sell their soul to the devil.

I ran a trial yesterday using an old laptop which has win 98 on it and has netscape 3 as one of the browsers I used to use.

I plugged in the US robotics modem into the phone socket and used my dialup connection to virgin.net. For email it worked flawlwssly.

So I think Ive the answer.

Im sure I dont need my mac code for dial up so Ican therefore keep my email and website with virgin and as there will be no browsing, No profiling!!!

ll move my broadband connection to an outfit that doesnt use phorm.

one other worry, not mentioned anywhereso far,

as 90%of net users use the last mile? or so of BT copper, will bt still have the deviousness to monitor my traffic?

If I found out they would have a fire problem, a coincidence of course.

Heathrow 777 crash: Siberian cold to blame?

ted frater

water feezing in fuel lines?

I was lucky to be trained as a flight engineer many years ago.

We we taught to suspect everything if we had a fault in our aircraft.

We flew with it for up to 14 hrs on maritime reconnaisance out over the north Atlantic. It was MY responsibility to see we got where the navigator took us and get it back!!.

no mean task for a 20 yr old.

So, I still follow aviation news and this incident made me think, what set of conditions could cause fuel starvation after this uneventful flight?.

well, based on the facts as first reported by the AAIB, they flew through an area of extreme cold, this on its own isnt a problem with fuel flow to the engines as the fuel would be at a much higher temperature than the outside air, and even if the airframe in the wings was reduced to -70c the fuel would keep the pipe temperature up above the freezing point of any water in the fuel or the fuel itself.

BUT what happens when you throttle back to make the rapid decent from 40.000ft over the North sea? your fuel flow will drop very considerably in an airframe that still might be -70c.

Any water in the fuel will then have the chance to be cooled to below freezing inside the fuel pipes and thus restrict the fuel flow, as well as the possibility of the fuel freezing as well.

This doesnt matter when the engines are in descent mode, but the moment you want power to correct the landing glide path then opening the throttles to call for more fuel, wont happen, because the fuel flow may well have been restricted by ice or fuel slush like diesel fuel in winter..

By the time the AAIB got to work on the airframe it would have regained its normal temperature and the ice/fuel would have melted.

Especially as there was a fuel leak and any water residue may have spilled out.

Now they say the ambient air temp wasnt as low as -70c but much less.

So my initial thoughts now seem unfounded.

I commented to aviation frends one would need to replicate fuel flows in the temperature gradients they experienced to see if the fault could be duplicated.

Just an old engineer not a bold engineer.

Ted Frater

269 Sqn RAF.

Coastal command.