This was a two day trip that involved flying two very different airplanes. One was a single pilot light jet with advanced avionics and the other was an older midsize Citation business jet. The plan was for me to fly the Cessna Citation M2, a single pilot private jet, to the Raleigh-Durham International airport for a pick up and be back in St Louis in time to fly the Citation XLS to the Chicago Midway airport. I would fly the Citation XLS back the next day. Unfortunately, the return time was an hour before the XLS flight. So, just to be on the safe side, I arranged for a part-time captain to be ready to fly the trip if it looked like I wouldn’t be back in time for the departure. I was really glad I had setup a contingency plan because as soon as I checked on with st Louis approach I head the XLS being handed off St Louis approach to Chicago center. I had missed the connection by 45 minutes. Fortunately, as a precaution, I had already purchased an airline ticket to the Chicago Midway airport. As soon as I shut down I secured he aircraft and jumped in my car getting to the St Louis airport in time to catch my Southwest Airlines flight to Chicago. The other Captain was flying back on the Airlines later that evening. I made it to Chicago, checked into the hotel and was ready for the return flight the next afternoon. This video is that two day trip with ATC, cockpit views and takeoffs and landings. Enjoy and safe travels.
This is more of an aviation vlog format for the flying video with a mix of flying, ATC and travel. Our flight started with takeoff on pretty day from the Spirit of St. Louis airport. Enroute we encountered some interesting cloud formations we flew through. Once we start our descent into the San Antonio area the weather clears again, and you get a good view of the area. San Antonio approach vectors us for a visual approach to runway 13 right and the Tower clears us to land. We taxi to the FBO which is Million Air and after securing the aircraft we are treated to fresh cookies.
We have one free day in San Antonio which we use to tour the Alamo and then have lunch on the River Walk. Day three starts of with a dense fog but it clears, and we get delayed so that we eventually takeoff at night. The departure ATIS at the end of the video has an interesting NOTAM referencing a laser strike on an aircraft.
The Cessna Citation Excel is a turbofan-powered, medium-sized business jet That seats eight passengers. It has a range of approximately 1,900 nm and cruises at 410 kts.
Flying the Citation M2, the newest version of the Cessna Citation Jet. The M2 is an absolute pleasure to fly. It’s an upgrade of the original CJ that has six passenger seats and is powered by the dependable Williams FJ-144 engines. It cruises at 400 knots and has the original service ceiling of 41,000 ft. The instrument panel has been completely redone and is now dominated by the three panel Garmin 3000. The new Garmin avionics are incredibly capable but, require a steep learning curve. FlightSafety is now requiring any pilot upgrading to the M2, who doesn’t have previous Garmin 3000 experience, to take a one time two day course on the avionics suite. Half the switches are gone and the systems they controlled are now selected and managed through the Garmin touch controllers, GTU’s. This isn’t always a plus. Now instead of just flipping a fan switch, you have to flip through a couple of pages to get to the selection option. The avionics master switch has been removed and when you turn on the battery the avionics come on. This is an odd adjustment if you transitioned from aircraft that would drain the battery in ten minutes if everything is powered up. The avionics now have their own full size battery. Systems are powered by the original battery. With the loss of both generators, and both batteries fully charged, you now have one hour till the total loss of avionics power. A properly managed electrical failure in this airplane is almost a non event. You still have one full panel in front of the pilot providing all the required information. Some of the other changes are the removal of one of the engine fire bottles, no inverters due to the fact that all lights are now LED’s and all equipment requiring ac power have integral inverters. The aircraft now has little winglets I like to call them stubies but, they are more for marketing appeal than anything else. Cessna had originally planed to provide the M2 with an option for an electric windshield but, recently announced that they had discontinued any plans to do so. In this video we go out for some training before picking up our clearance to Punta Gorda Florida. Some of the basic weights are maximum ramp weight 10,800 lbs., Maximum takeoff weight 10,700 lbs, maximum landing weight 9,900 lbs. Maximum fuel is 3,296 lbs and fuel burn is 800 the first hour then 700 lbs and 600 lbs.
A Cessna Citation Encore Landing on runway 17L at the Centennial Airport (KAPA) in Denver Colorado. This is a visual approach to the runway. At the beginning of the video we get a traffic alert from the TCAS for traffic to our left. Both of the pilots are looking for the traffic but never visually acquire it and the flying pilot initiates a turn to the right for traffic avoidance. This is the second flying video I’ve made with my Gopro camera and I”m still trying to get a balance between the cockpit and the view out of the front of the aircraft. There’s a substantial amount of snow on the ground that adds to the white seen out the windshield.
A Cessna Citation II (CE-550) departing just before a thunder storm moves over the airport. As we taxi the aircraft to the runway you can see the shelf cloud of the approaching storm. This was an empty flight where we were doing some flight training so you can hear discussion of speeds to use and technique. The Citation is a probably on of the easiest jets to learn to fly. During the visual approach we pick up some light rain and the landing is on runway 2C at the Nashville International Airport (KBNA).
A Cessna Citation II (CE-550) flying a visual approach and landing at the rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport (KBJC). The takeoff later that afternoon is in the video. At an elevation of 5,673 feet, BJC is a high altitude airport. Jet engines progressively lose thrust as they climb above sea level. This reduction of takeoff thrust means that a longer runway is required for the aircraft to accelerate to it’s takeoff speed. This takeoff is on runway 29R which has an uphill gradient of 1.3% resulting in an uphill run that requires even more runway for the airplane to accelerate. In addition high ambient temperatures also reduce the thrust of the engine. This was a relatively cool day so we didn’t take a third performance penalty on our takeoff. Even so, the extra time required to accelerate to our takeoff speed is noticeable in the video.
Cessna Citation Encore flying a visual approach and landing to runway 12R at the St. Louis Downtown Cahokia Airport (KCPS). The copilot is the flying pilot and we have a good view of downtown St. Louis and the Gateway Arch as we turn from the downwind to base leg. This is my first aviation video with a Gopro camera.
A very short repositioning flight in the Cessna Citation Mustang from the St. Louis Lambert Airport to the Spirit of St. Louis Airport. As I taxi onto the runway for takeoff, the airport diagram is displayed on the MFD for easy reference. Once On the runway the synthetic vision shows the runway and center line stripes on the pilot Flight Display. This is so accurate that our position several feet right of the center line as seen through the windshield is accurately displayed on the PFD. The takeoff is on runway 30R and the landing at Spirit Airport is on runway 8R. Straight line distance between the two airports is only 15 nautical miles which makes for a very busy single pilot trip. As soon as I level off, ATC confirms I have Spirit in sight and I’m cleared for the visual to 8R. This was a Saturday afternoon so there isn’t much ATC radio traffic.
A beautiful day for a Cessna Mustang single pilot flight to Rogers Municipal Airport-Carter Field Arkansas. This was the day after northwest Arkansas was hit by a winter storm. I approach the airport from the east and fly a right base for a landing on runway 2. You can see lots of snow on the ground and the snow plow has cleared a narrow strip down the center of the runway. ATC and tower radio communications can be heard in the audio.
Flying the Cessna Citation Mustang single pilot to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport and landing on runway 35C. During the climb out I picked up some clear ice on the wing leading edge. In this video you can easily see the ice breaking up and flying off the leading edge. When the deice boots are activated, they’re inflated with bleed air from the engines. The expanding rubber boot breaks the ice and it falls away into the slip stream. The ability to shed ice from the airframe is very important. Ice can accumulate rapidly on the airframe. As it does it adds weight, creates drag, and changes the shape of the wing thus reducing lift. It doesn’t take much ice to affect aircraft performance. This video shows much more of the cockpit instrument panel and you can easily see me paging through Garmin G1000 to load the Bonham Six arrival and the ILS 35C approach. I have an ipad on which I’ve loaded the Foreflight app and I’ve just started using it. We’re still required to have the NOS paper charts though. Air Traffic control communications can be heard in the 2nd half of the video.