One of my aviation goals is to get a TMG rating. Right now, I don’t know if I’m going to add it to my PPL (probably have to take it in another European country to be able to do that), or take the lessons required to obtain the SPL (Sailplane Pilot License).
The rules are a bit complex, and not very straight forward.
But, since I’ve already taken LN-GJP, the local TMG, out of the hangar a lot of times already, I figured it was time to give it a try! No matter what I end up doing, a simple flight just to see how it is won’t hurt!
This airplane want to fly
The inside of LN-GJP sure is tiny compared to the 172 I’m used to flying! But the view is so much better!
When taxing from the parking to the runway, it felt almost like the first time I taxied the 172! This airplane is very different than what I’m used to.
I barely had time to advance the throttle before we were in the air, wow, this airplane really want to fly!
Stopping the propeller
We made it to the training area in no time, the same one we used when I learned to fly in the 172, and then we switched off the engine! This is something I’ve never done before, you simply don’t switch off the engine while airborne in a single engine airplane.
But LN-GJP, a Diamond HK36 TTC Super Dimona, is made to do this (still felt unnatural though).
We switched from from powered flight to soaring mode, and went hunting for thermals.
Clouds, especially cumulus clouds, often have thermals underneath them. So we went cloud hunting, another strange thing for me. I usually avoid clouds if I can.
Climbing high, no power required
The first attempt didn’t yield much results, so we restarted the engine (it stilled worked), and headed over to another nearby cloud. Once there, we shut down again, and hit the jackpot!
We were cleared to 4000 feet, but quickly had to ask for 5000 feet. It didn’t take long to realize that we could get even higher, so we asked nicely for 6000 feet - which we got. We made it to 5500 feet, and were able to keep that altitude for a while. Still with the engine stopped!
I’m usually never this high this close to the airport, so I though it would be fun to see if we could glide all the way back.
It’s safe to say that we had no issue making it back, we were so high when we got back, that we had to use the airbrakes to get down. Another new experience for me.
Back on the ground, we had to start the engine again to taxi back to the parking. It actually took a couple tries before we got it started, probably cold from all the soaring up at 4-5000 feet.
A little over half of the one hour flight was without the engine! A very nice day I was told, so I’m happy with this!
Now I just have to figure out how to do this…
If anyone reads this, and have went from PPL(A) SEP to SPL/LAPL(A) TMG before, please let me know! I want to know how you did it.