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EAA Chapter 501 Hosts Second Young Eagles Workshop

By Ron Reinartz, EAA 298952, Chapter 501 Young Eagles Coordinator

Having completed a successful Young Eagles Workshop session in September, we regrouped a week later and initiated changes to further improve our second workshop. Fast forward to October 22 and the team was ready to meet again to initiate the setup for the following morning. Everyone knew their assignment and secured whatever was required to support the workshop. The setup team, now experienced in what needed to be done, quickly transformed the hangar from a maintenance facility to a classroom. Within an hour, we’d completed most of the setup and prepared for the following morning.

Saturday morning was gloomily overcast and much cooler than the preceding month. Inside Aero Safety Training, Jessica Daisy, EAA 1394005, our registrar, checked in our Young Eagles. Unfortunately, three of the six Young Eagles were unable to attend, but the other three were eager to head down to the workshop. Bob Menier, EAA 1106119, had kept them busy, sharing his knowledge with physical examples of the fasteners used in aircraft sheet metal work, which was the day’s project. Aviation sheet metal work was Bob’s 40-plus-year career as an AMT.

The three Young Eagles were (Mary) Lia Valente, Josh Puerzer, EAA 1364403, and Beck Youngberg, EAA 1389108. Josh and Beck are both chapter scholars and Beck was the recipient of the EAA Ray Scholarship, which he is using to secure his private pilot certificate.

Bob led the Young Eagles down to Hangar No. 2 for introduction to the chapter members in attendance. Lia gave us her background and newfound interest in aviation. Josh and Beck spoke at the prior workshop.

eaa chapter 501 hosts second young eagles workshop Airplane GEEK EAA Chapter 501 Hosts Second Young Eagles Workshop

With a little help from the young people, we were able to get the PowerPoint running on the laptop computer; Josh figured out why it wouldn’t load. Ron Reinartz welcomed everyone and went through the program outline and housekeeping items.

The first presentation was “Weather and How it Impacts Flight.” Ron, a CFI/CFII, covered the material, providing insights and discussing how knowledge of the complete weather picture is critical to the safety of flight. The course objectives were met, and by the close of the presentation, each Young Eagle had a better appreciation of how weather develops, impacts flight, where to secure it, and how it moves across our country.

During the break between presentations, Matt Lamm, EAA 1229418, gave a personal tour of his Cessna 182, flown in from Morristown Airport (MMU) earlier in the morning. The Young Eagles were impressed with the roominess of the aircraft and with the addition of the new Garmin equipment, and quickly appreciated how the technology updates can really assist pilots in the operation of their aircraft as well as stay current with the times. Beck and Josh readily identified the similarities in design and layout, as compared to their training aircraft, Cessna 172s.

Charlie Derk, EAA Lifetime 1184280, then made a great presentation on the building of his RV-10, which kept the Young Eagles on the edge of their seats. He was unable to bring the RV-10 to this workshop, but Beck and Josh had the opportunity to sit in the pilot’s seat in September and received a personal tour of the aircraft by Charlie. Watching the presentation made most of the older members very tired, especially when Charlie said there were 35,000 rivets in the airframe that he drove or pulled during the build. The entire homebuilding process was described, from selecting the aircraft kit, through the flight testing and painting, no detail was omitted. Charlie did admit that if he had it to do again, he’d go with the quick-build kit; the additional cost was worth it, as it would have shortened the building process by approximately one year.

Ryan Ferguson, corporate/executive jet pilot and DPE, was our career speaker. Ryan shared how he worked his way up to becoming a corporate jet pilot. Aviation had always been an interest, but he found himself in a position to join the corporate ranks earlier than an airline position would have been available. He noted that sometimes, opportunities arise that are not anticipated, and that’s when the decisions must be made. He also shared a number of photos he’d taken while on international corporate flights around the world. The Young Eagles were very much in tune with Ryan and enjoyed his insights into corporate aviation.

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Once Ryan completed his presentation, the Young Eagles ate their lunch while enjoying a P-51 DVD. Matt Hall, former Red Bull pilot, walked us through the pre-flight and then flew some exciting aerial maneuvers with the P-51. He was flying in formation with a T-28, diving in a simulated ground attack, S-turning along the ocean beach and finished by buzzing his home field, somewhere in Australia. Great lunchtime entertainment.

Immediately following lunch, Frank Galella, operator of Lincoln Park Aviation, led our Young Eagles through the sheet metal project, building an aluminum cellphone stand. Starting with a blank piece of aluminum, Frank guided each Young Eagle through the following processes:

  1. Rounding the corners of the aluminum pieces and deburring.
  2. Properly measuring and marking the bend lines and position of the rivet holes.
  3. Using a metal brake to bend each piece to the proper angle.
  4. Center punching the position where the rivet holes were to be drilled,
  5. Drilling the initial hole, then Cleco-ing it for the alignment of the second rivet hole.
  6. Finally riveting the two aluminum pieces together and attaching the EAA wings to the front of the stand.

We had three happy Young Eagles at the conclusion of this project.

Matt was our next and final presenter, engaging the Young Eagles in a dialogue about flight instruments. Matt discussed how all the instruments in the panel have a specific function and their respective operation. He defined and explained the pitot-static system and how each instrument relies on static air for correct functioning. Matt tackled the gyroscopic instruments, providing a “fidget” that demonstrates the rigidity of the gyro in space. He also explained how each gyro was positioned differently in each instrument, producing a miniature aircraft display movement, accurately depicting bank, roll, and pitch as well as the directional gyro operation. Matt’s explanations were excellent, addressing not only how these instruments work, but their importance for control of the aircraft, especially in instrument flight.

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A special thanks to Frank for the use of his facilities and the terrific job he did in guiding the Young Eagles through the cellphone stand project.

I want to recognize the Chapter 501 team members who directly supported Workshop No. 2:

  • Jessica Daisy Registrar, Young Eagles check-in, fruit snack
  • Bob Menier Mentor, project fastener support, take-down
  • David Jones Mentor, Saturday set-up, take-down
  • Allen Dunn Friday set-up, Saturday set-up, take-down
  • Don Provost Friday set-up, audio/visual, snacks, ice, cooler
  • Charlie Derk Presenter
  • Matt Lamm Presenter, mentor, aircraft guide 
  • Bob Crozier LPA support in set-up and take-down

I am very proud of the men and women of EAA Chapter 501 who have successfully delivered two of the three workshops we’ve scheduled for 2021. With each workshop, we’ve become better at what we do to immerse young persons in aviation. My thanks go out to the aforementioned crew and the entire workshop team, who continue to prepare for Workshop No. 3 on November 20, 2021.

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