Aircraft Icing

Pilots HATE ice. It does really nasty things and rarely is there the equivalent of a raft. One of my least favorite memories of delivering an airplane was having the alternator go offline at the same time we hit some ice. You really need the pitot heat on to see your airspeed and you really need it off to save the battery.

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Suspect my dad’s Taylorcraft didn’t even have pitot heat, unless it was rigged off exhaust somehow which seems doubtful. Battery was strictly for running lights, I believe; and no generator at all.

I think he had to sell it to keep me. The flying story of his that I remember was him doing some mild aerobatics for his enthusiastically waving father as he left Buffalo to go back to MIT – and discovering his dad’s car keys in his pocket when he arrived.

And there was one about roof-hopping on an overweight takeoff that must have raised his pulse rate a bit, but it was in tall-tale format and I’m not sure it even happened.

Never heard of that. I’ve only seen them connected to the electrical ‘grid’ but as long as the engine is running it shouldn’t draw down the battery.

Yes, wouldn’t be easy. But as I said, Dad’s Taylorcraft had a battery for running lights, but no other electrics. Twin-magneto igntion.

Silly me. The brand name Taylorcraft should have been a clue. :pensive:

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Mister Taylor’s second stab at a Piper Cub, based on his experience designing the first one. Longer wings, very float-y aircraft I understand.

Taylorcraft Grasshoppers taught me how to fly a tail dragger. Nice little noisy planes that went slower than the car I drove to the airport was capable of doing. But, you had to fly them off the ground and back on, unlike the tricycles. Made me a better pilot and I have fond memories of those rag covered little planes. :slight_smile:


My cousin-in-law’s almost finished rebuilding an Aeronca Sedan with floats that came to him in a basket. With only a hundred hours on the engine after a major teardown.


I’ve never flown a Taylorcraft but they look like fun. I’ve flown Piper Cubs and Citabrias, one of which was an aerobatic model. It’s hard to keep from smiling while moseying over the countryside at low altitude in a Cub.

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See part about “alternator offline” :wink:

I don’t find them excessively floaty airplanes, but they are both light and slow so wind effects them a lot. Also people were smaller when those things were designed, I would need a chiropractor on standby if I had to fly one every day.

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