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Pell City Composite Squadron 118Alabama Wing Civil Air Patrol

Flight Log

Volume 2, No. 2 Inside this issue: Commanders 1 Corner Calendar


February 2011

Commanders Corner
From the Commander:
Practice, Practice, Practice, Well, it looks like Old Man Winter may be about to loosen some of his grip on us. Ground Hogs Day is coming. We should soon know whether to expect 6 more weeks of winter, or an early spring. We have even had a couple of nice days this month. So I have a question. How has your training program been going this winter? Do you ever get enough training? The short answer is no. It is very rare that we can say that we have had enough training. I dont recall talking with any instructors or evaluators and hearing them complain about everyone being over trained. Where are training opportunities? Some are formal and announced well in advance. Some examples would be the current WESS training or the recent IFR Ground School. Some are formal and unannounced. Training at your regular unit meeting would be one example. Some are opportunities to evaluate how effective our training has been. A SARX would be one occasion for this. Most of our training is done in a small group or even on a one on one basis. A lot of our Mission Training falls into this area. There are also courses offered through AOPA and other organizations. The bottom line is that training opportunities are where you find them. Sometimes you have to look for them. I believe that we should spend more time training in the skills needed for the completion of our missions. How long has it been since you used your handheld DF unit? How long has it been since you flew a search pattern? How long has it been since you located a beacon either in the air or on the ground? At a recent SARX, they placed GPS units in the aircraft to see how well the aircrew could fly the required patterns. They reviewed the GPS Tracks at the completion of the task. I think that this is a great idea. The feedback is true and unbiased. How comfortable would you be with a GPS in your aircraft or in your Ground Team gear to see how well you did your task? How much training is enough? The completion of the skill sheets and the achievement of a rating is not the end, it is the beginning. We all have a responsibility to maintain our skills to the highest degree possible. We should train so that we will be able to operate all of our equipment properly. This requires recurrent training on a regular basis. We have many instructors for all Mission Skills. Locate one and review the skills that were required to achieve your rating. Remember what we are training to do. Most people practice until they get it right. That is not enough. We need to practice until we dont get it wrong. Jim Gosnell Commander AL-118

PAOs Corner 3 Safety Officers W.E.S.S. Mission Staff Cadets Corner Standards and Evaluations


8& 9

Did you Know 10 CAP Trivia


Commanders Thanks



Page 2



Mon 1

Tue 2

Happy Birthday Randy Boyer

Thu 3 CADET PT 4

Fri 5


Happy Birthday Peter Randolph

Happy Birthday James Mastroni

Happy Birthday Stephen Lopez




14 Happy Valentines Day




18 WESS Feb. 18-20 Vigilant Warrior

19 Happy
Birthday Nathan Bedford


Presidents Day





26 Happy
Birthday Noel Harvey


CAP Newsletter Deadline



PAOS Corner . . .

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January is gone and February has arrived with gusto! Please make note of the Newsletter Deadline and try your best to submit your information before that date. Doing so makes my life easier and helps the newsletter get finished on time. All of us are very busy, but with a little planning we can get what we need done by the deadline. Ill send out a reminder earlier which may help. As your new PAO, Im constantly learning. One thing Im learning is that I dont know everything! That is where your help comes in. If you see something that I need to be aware of, please bring it to my attention through email. Im open for new information as well as constructive criticism. In order to make the newsletter what it should be, Ive set up a list of guidelines for submissions to the newsletter. These have been approved by several senior members and should help us all have a better understanding of what the goal of the newsletter is.
1. All newsletter submissions must be submitted by a Civil Air Patrol member unless special permission has been granted by our Squadron Commander. 2. All newsletter submissions must pertain to the following areas: A. Cadet and Senior Member Programs and Activities - This includes promotions, achievements, activities such as Iron Man, parades and volunteering at the Air Show and Golf Tournament, and events such as Squadron Christmas Parties. B. Aerospace - This includes educational programs, pilot instruction and information, and current e v e n t s . It is very important that when you include facts that you also include references that back up your statements. As PAO and Newsletter Editor, I reserve the right to edit and choose what is or isnt suitable for publication. I will always seek advice from the chain of command when in doubt. C. Emergency Services and Safety - This includes education and information about Wing and National Emergency Service schools and programs.

I hope that these guidelines will help serve as a tool we can use when choosing what to submit for publication. This is your newsletter and should be one that reflects the message and mission of Civil Air Patrol. Photos of CAP activities are usually posted on my flickr page. If you ever need a copy of any of my photos, please let me know. I can email files to you or have them printed. The average cost of having a 4x6 photo printed is $ .11 per copy. Remember that you can access my photos at: If you cant find the photos you are specifically looking for, please contact me. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at: or

2nd Lt. Beth Shurbutt

Here is a listing of the deadline dates for upcoming newsletters: February 25 (Marchs Newsletter) March 28, 2011 (Aprils Newsletter)

PAOS Corner . . .

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CORE VALUES A recent FAA Safety Tip, Notice number NOTC2794, warns of a danger of ground incursions that we OF the major causes may not think of in the normal course of our operations. Do you know what is one ofCIVIL AIR of Runway Incursions? If you guessed vehicle or pedestrian deviations, then you arePATROL certainly correct. Almost all of senior members and maybe even some of our cadets have cards that allow them access to the PLR airport grounds. Our aircraft, N261CA, and our CAP van, are both located within the airportfenced area. In addition, most of our senior meetings occur at our hanger, requiring us to access the fenced in area of the airport. Most of us, in our normal operations, pretty well stick close to the vehicle road on the East Side of the airport and dont often take our vehicles or ourselves into the aircraft movement areas of the airport. However, I have observed members who, in cold weather or under other urgent needs, drive to the end of our hanger row to use the bathroom facilities located there. Also, many of us use the ramp area in front of our hanger for parking during our meetings.
Volunteer Service Excellence Respect Integrity

There is nothing wrong with any of the above actions as long as you recognize two important rules: 1) Aircraft Movement areas are basically for aircraft and we should never park our vehicles in a position that would, in any way, interfere with normal aircraft activities. 2) If we should encounter an aircraft in one of these areas, the aircraft must have the priority since it is much more difficult to maneuver aircraft than ground vehicles. I cant imagine any reason that any of us should be required to encroach even further into the aircraft areas of the airport (such as taxiways or runways) but if we do, we need to conduct ourselves exactly in the fashion of an aircraft and have two way radio communications capability on the Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF). Speaking of weather, regardless of what Birmingham Bill the zoos ground hog does this week, we are certain to have a bit more wintry weather before we break into spring and have another whole set of hazards of concern. Please keep up your winter weather vigilance for a while and dont forget that we will be transitioning into Thunderstorm possibilities at any time. And, to complicate matters further, they could actually be mixed in together. Hey, nobody said that flying was easy did they?

Stay Safe! Ron Harlan, Squadron 118 Safety Officer

REMINDER: Read the newsletter and receive a Safety Briefing Credit. Please email Ron Harlan at

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W.E.S.S. W.E.S.S. February 1820, 2011

(Vigilant Warrior, Titus, Alabama) Weather Predictions Highs (low 60s) Lows (high 30s) This could change!

WESS Dates

BASIC (GTM3) - Search Techniques Advanced (GTM1) - Advanced Electronic DirectionFinding/Triangulation, Perform an Airfield Search Leader (GTL) - Controlling SearchesWorking with SAR CaninesHelicopter Operations

February 18-20 March 25-27 April 29 May 1

Civil Air Patrol

Alabama Wing

Look for us on the Web:

ALWG Mission Staff Assistants Corner . . .

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From Your Mission Staff Assistant . . .

Hey Cadets! Do you know what CAP Regulation document was updated and goes into effect February 1, 2011? If you guess CAPR 52-16, you are right! Take a look at some of the changes. I know a couple of changes that will really interest the cadets. There is a change in how many days between promotions. Go look it up!! With that being said, I'd like to share the basic process of how you get promoted through eservices. For those taking online tests, your scores automatically are added to your promotion data. I log in written tests taken at the squadron usually the next day. Things like PT, Character Development, Drill Score, Speech/Essays, SDA, Mentorship, AE Instruction, Cadet Oath, and Active Participation are logged in by a senior member. All of these qualifications must be verified and documented before they are put into eservices. Once everything is logged in, it goes into a "pending" queue for the Commander's approval. Please note that it is possible that your information cannot get logged in and/or approved at the exact moment you complete it. We must make sure all your paperwork is in order and these things take time. Don't forget to take into consideration we conduct Review Boards at least once per Phase which must be requested 2-3 weeks ahead of time by the cadet. If it's been more than a week past your intended promotion, call, email, text or send me a FB message and I will look into it. I want to tell you about one more change in particular regarding the Introduction to Safety test. New Cadets: (Effective Feb. 1) These new cadets must complete the following two tasks for Character Development Requirements During Achievement 1: 1. Complete an Introduction to the Core Values 2. Complete the Introduction to Safety course and pass a formal quiz with a grade of 80% or higher Existing Cadets: All cadets who have already completed Achievement 1 must pass the safety test by March 31, 2011. ONLY THREE CADETS IN OUR SQUADRON HAVE THIS COMPLETED. GO VISIT ESERVICES!! 1Lt Jeannie Scott

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Cadets Corner . . .

Cadets Corner
By Capt. Cindy Bennett

Cadets Corner
First thing this month, I would like to apologize to several of our cadets. I have inadvertently left their names off when I list those that have promoted. This month I will do this first and correct my mistakes. Waaaay back in Nov 2010 Cadet Allison Howard promoted to C/TSgt and we would like to congratulate her for her achievement. The next one I need to list is Cadet Andy Miller, he promoted to C/ A1C in December and is moving up to the next rank too. Now for this months promotions, Cadet Jessica Lucy promoted to C/ TSgt and Cadet Daniel L Smith promoted to C/ CMSgt. Congratulations to all of these cadets for all their hard work in attaining their promotions.

The Cadet Oath

I pledge that I will serve faithfully in the Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program and that I will attend meetings regularly, participate actively in unit activities, obey my officers, wear my uniform properly, and advance my education and training rapidly to prepare myself to be of service to my community, state, and nation.

January has been cold. There isnt another way to put it. We have seen cold temperatures, rain, snow, sleet and ice on the roads. We cancelled one cadet meeting this month because of the uncertainty about road conditions. We really have our members safety in mind when we have to make that call. Our members travel from all around the Pell City area and even though we might not have a bad weather situation in PC, there may be conditions present in other areas like Anniston, Oxford, Weaver, Saks, Trussville, and Moody to make traveling hazardous. So be patient with us when a meeting is cancelled, we are only thinking of Your Safety! Oh, by the way I did find a recipe for bread and milk. If you are curious I will give it to you. January also brought the continuation of the WESS cycle. We traveled to Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery for training in First Aid, CPR, and Blood Borne Pathogens for the basic school. Advanced school had more advanced map training and triangulation exercises. Next time WESS will be held at Vigilant Warrior and the training dates are Feb 18-20. Just a reminder to all parents and cadets, check the web site if you have questions about what the uniform of the week will be and what is on the schedule. There is also an archive of past Flight Logs. Look under News and click on newsletters to pick the one(s) you missed! Many thanks to Lt. Beth Shurbutt for putting our newsletters together. They are so professional looking and very informative. Capt. Cindy Bennett

Helpful web sites:

??????Capt. Bennetts Trivia Question?????

Who is the SER (South East Region) commander of Civil Air Patrol? Be the first to EMAIL your reply to: and receive a prize!

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Standards / Evaluations Corner . . .

We, as CAP pilots, come from many different aviation backgrounds, some are military but most of us have general aviation training. Unlike the military and the airline industry, CAP does not have standard operating procedures (SOP). This makes it very interesting when it comes to training and flying with other CAP pilots. Some say, there are many different ways to complete a task with the same outcome and most pilots are well aware of that fact. This is not to say that one is better than another, just different methods to get at the same thing. In the past, I have talked about the difference between techniques and procedures. Where procedures are required to be accomplished, techniques are merely suggestions. Below is an article from one of our CAP pilots who is working on acquiring more aviation experiences. I think you will enjoy his observations from flying with his primary instructor to flying with various instructors and check pilots within the CAP. Chris Iddins, Major

For the duration of my private pilot ticket I had, for the most part, one CFI. I listened carefully to his every word taking it as the gospel. I did not have any friends who were pilots so I had very few constructive aviation discussions outside of my training. Then I joined CAP, a tremendous asset for me to learn much, much more. However I soon realized I had to relearn some things, or learn how to do them differently. After a few flights with other pilots it became clear to me that if you ask 5 pilots or even CFIs a question you might just get 5 different answers. While getting my initial form 5 and then a subsequent one the following year it was frustrating that even though I thought I knew the right answers, sometimes there was more than one right answer. Some were more right than others depending on who was asking the question. I recently completed my transition to high performance and G1000 equipped aircraft. During this transition I flew with several pilots and CFIs offering a multitude of information on best practices for flying this type of aircraft. All provided good information. Some of it was contradictory. These contradictions can become very frustrating, especially while trying to do your best during a check ride. Here are some subjects I recently discussed with my check pilot during my latest form 5.

Since joining CAP I had been instructed to leave the left side of the master switch off until after starting the engine. Something I had not been previously taught during my private pilot training. This practice was to help increase the lifespan of the alternator. While this check pilot was one of the most particular and thorough pilots I had ever flown with, it surprised me that he did not put too much weight into this theory and did not partake in this practice.
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Standards and Evaluations . . . continued

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For high performance operations I was cautioned about shock cooling and to avoid reducing manifold pressure below the green arc during cruise. During a need to demonstrate reducing altitude in a short distance during my check ride I reduced manifold pressure to the bottom of the green arc and then started adding flaps as air speed would allow. This puzzled my check pilot and he asked why I did not pull the power all the way back. When I explained I was avoiding shock cooling the engine it was then I learned not everyone subscribes to this theory. This check pilot was okay with operating the engine in full range anytime during the flight. In our pre-flight discussions I began describing how I was taught to reduce manifold pressure to the top of the green arc as part of the "climb cleanup" as this would help prolong the engines lifespan and reduce fuel burn in the climb. My check pilot disagreed with this approach with some thoughtful alternatives. According to the POH the engine is rated to perform at maximum power for 2000 hours so there is no real need to be so cautious since the engine would be replaced around 2000 hours anyway. In fact its safer to climb at full power so you reach your cruise altitude quicker therefore allowing you to reduce your time with a nose high, reduced forward visibility attitude.

In last months newsletter we learned that for cold weather starting without a preheat to hand turn the prop to lubricate the engine before starting. An additional instruction was given by my check pilot. Turn the prop backwards to reduce the chance that the engine could fire in case you had a hot mag. Also in last months newsletter we learned to wait a few moments after priming the engine before cranking to allow the avgas time to evaporate into the intake manifold. My check pilot disagreed with this suggestion as the fuel could wash away the oil you just circulated through the engine by turning the prop backwards by hand.

In many situations during our discussion of these contradictory subjects my check pilot would say "its in the manual". These contradictions can be very frustrating but I've learned to soak all this guidance in, read the manual and apply logic that makes the best and safest sense to me. In some situations there may be more than one right answer. In any case I will never know everything and will always need to continue my studies to become a better, safer, and more proficient pilot. Bottom line, when you are taught something, there should be documentation somewhere to back up the subject. I challenge you, as well as myself, to find the truth and be safe. My check ride was both enlightening and enjoyable. My check pilot was very thorough, professional, and knowledgeable. His challenge for me to learn more was welcomed. I now have some truths of my own to formulate and more studying to do. I look forward to flying with and learning from all of you. 2nd Lt. Jay Gamblin

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Did You Know? . . .

DID YOU KNOW? Did you know that there is a new safety training requirement? I know, you are probably saying, oh no, not another one. Yes, another one. NHQ has been taking a harder look at safety training and has decided that it really isnt necessary for everyone to be trained to the level of a Safety Officer. That doesnt mean that we dont all need to be trained in Safety. We all have to have basic safety knowledge to avoid accidents and injuries. NHQ has come up with a new course called Introduction to CAP Safety Program for New Members. That is a mouth full but, the long and short of it is that not just new members have to take the training but, existing members as well. Here is the official CAP version of the interim change letter issued in November. In accordance with the policy approved by the National Board, every active CAP member (seniors, cadets, cadet sponsors, 50 year, and life members) who attends CAP meetings, participates in any flight and/or vehicle operation or participates in cadet or any ES missions, shall complete introductory safety education. The policy implementation for all current members and new members is as follows: a. All current members must complete the current introductory safety education module, Introduction to CAP Safety for New Members, by 31 March 2011. This includes all members that have previously completed the Basic Safety course or have earned a specialty track rating in safety. b. Effective 1 January 2011, all members, upon joining CAP, will complete this introductory safety education as a part of their Level I requirements for senior members and as a part of the Curry Achievement for cadets. I dont know about you but, I like to go ahead and get my training over with so I dont forget about it. Then I have to hurry up and get it done before the deadline. The way to do that is to log on to eServices and look on the left side of the page and find Online Safety Education. Click on the link. Under the heading Educational Course look for Introduction to CAP Safety Program for New Members. Click on the link and start the course. When finished print a copy of the certificate for your file. The system will also record that you have completed the course. While you are there, look at the other online Safety courses you can take. You might learn something that will someday save your life. So now you know. Eddie Shurbutt, 1LT

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CAP Trivia Corner . . .

Last Months WinnerBrian

Scott (Cadet Member)

Last Months Question: Identify Building 714 and give 5 facts about it. Answer: 1. It is where CAP National Headquarters are located. 2. It is 80 yrs old. 3. It was recently remodeled/renovated. 4. It was originally built as the Base Hospital. 5. It cost $83,147.56 to build originally. Additional information provided by Cadet Jessica Lucy: 6. Two current CAP employees were born there. It is 48,000 square feet in size, 7. It began as a 30-bed hospital, finally growing to a 225 bed facility. 8. Renovation lasted 18 months. 9. Renovation cost $5.5 million. 10. It looks much the same now as it did in 1931, but now it is better suited for todays technology.

This information came from the online Volunteer Jan-Mar issue.

This months question: How is Civil Air Patrol involved in the Super Bowl XLV game?
The first cadet and senior member to send in their answer along with where they found the answer (do not use Wikipedia), will win a special prize chosen by the editor. Email your answer to:

Alabama/Mississippi Summer Encampment

13 Active Cadets should consider ALMS Encampment this summer. Encampment is a requirement before beginning Phase 3. If you are in Phase 2 and have not gone, you should begin preparing for this now. It will be in Alabama this year!

The new E-edition of the January-March 2011 issue of the Civil Air Patrol Volunteer is now available at:

Aerospace Corner . . .

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From the world of Aerospace news this month of January 2011, we have information you may not be aware of. The attack on Representative Gabrielle Giffords has a connection to the space community. Her husband Mark Kelly was scheduled to command the next space shuttle mission, STS-134 on April 19, 2011. The decision for Mark Kelly to continue as commander may be changed because of his wifes rehabilitation and his desire to support her during this critical time. Mark Kelley has a twin brother who is also active in the space program. Scott Kelly is now serving on board the ISS. Cadets and Senior members who would like to have their image or name flown aboard the STS-134 can go to to sign up. Let me encourage each senior member that has not done so, to study the book, Aerospace: Journey of Flight, then take the online Yeager test. If you need a copy of the hardback book, please email me and I will see that you receive one, otherwise, you can download a copy at eservices, To take the test you will go to click on CAP university, then online courses and exams, scroll down to Aerospace Education then choose AEPSM exam (Yeager). The test is open book, and un-timed. Earning your Yeager award or giving a public presentation to a Non-CAP group is a requirement to completing Level IV in your professional development. Capt. Cindy Bennett Congratulations to Capt. Jon Garlick and 2d Lt. David Taylor for earning their Yeager award in 2010.

Special Thanks from our Squadron Commander :

"I would like to personally thank each and everyone of our pilots and aircrew members for their hard work. Because of your efforts, we have been able to meet our flight time expectations for every month so far this fiscal year. Thank You and Keep up the hard work." Jim Gosnell, Commander